Study Guide

The Mayor of Casterbridge Chapter 28

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Chapter 28

  • Henchard has to go to the Town Hall to deal with the old drunk woman from the day before.
  • He hears all the evidence about the woman from the witnesses.
  • The woman is then allowed to present a statement in her own defense.
  • She says that twenty years ago she was a relatively prosperous furmity saleswoman at a fair in Weydon. One day, a man and woman came in with their baby. The man auctioned off his wife for five guineas, and the woman left with the sailor who bought her. And that man was Henchard, the Justice of the Peace!
  • Henchard admits that it's true.
  • Of course there's a big commotion at the Town Hall.
  • Everyone wants to hear the story about how Henchard, the former Mayor and current Justice of the Peace, sold his wife at a county fair.
  • Lucetta hears the story and is miserable. She promised to marry a guy who would sell his wife at a county fair?
  • She spends the rest of the day out and about, and Elizabeth-Jane doesn't see her until late.
  • The next day, Lucetta leaves for a trip to Port-Breedy, a town by the seaside.
  • She says she needs some fresh air.
  • A few days later, Henchard comes by to see Lucetta.
  • Lucetta is back from her trip to Port-Breedy, but out on a long walk.

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