Study Guide

Northanger Abbey Chapter 23

By Jane Austen

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Chapter 23

  • Catherine grows more convinced that the General is evil since he wanders off by himself a lot.
  • The tour of the house commences. The house is very charming and well-decorated. It's also very modern, which doesn't appeal to Catherine. The creepy factor is about zero.
  • She is impressed by all the renovations the General has done on the place though – even though they aren't very "Gothic."
  • Catherine is sad to hear that an old part of the house was knocked down to put in modern kitchens and stables, but she finds the kitchens impressive. She still thinks this is a poor excuse for a Gothic abbey, though.
  • The General hints that Catherine's family might be paying a visit in the future. Catherine thinks he's cool to invite them over for no apparent reason. We'll pause to let you roll your eyes.
  • The General halts the tour as they reach a passage with a winding staircase and Catherine is convinced that the General is hiding a deep, dark secret there.
  • Eleanor tells Catherine she had planned to show her Mrs. Tilney's old rooms when the General stopped the tour.
  • Catherine interrogates Eleanor about Mrs. Tilney's death and finds out that Eleanor was away at school at the time. Catherine is now convinced that the General murdered Mrs. Tilney.
  • Catherine is further suspicious by the fact that the General is sitting up late to work. Clearly, only evil murderers pull all-nighters.
  • Catherine now suspects that Mrs. Tilney may not be dead at all, in true Gothic novel fashion. She may be locked up in a secret chamber.
  • Catherine decides to sit up late to see if the General goes to the area of the house he refused to show her, which Catherine can conveniently see from her window.
  • Catherine makes a lousy detective though, since she falls asleep during her surveillance.

Northanger Abbey Chapter 23 Study Group

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