Study Guide

The Return of the Native Book 4, Chapter 3

By Thomas Hardy

Book 4, Chapter 3

She Goes Out to Battle against Depression

  • Eustacia shuts down and things are very tense between her and Clym.
  • He confronts his wife over dinner one night and asks if she idealized him and saw him as some sort of hero and not a real person.
  • They argue some more and Clym tells Eustacia that she can go her own way if she needs to and that he loves her anyway.
  • Eustacia cries but then shakes herself out of her funk and decides to go to a party.
  • So she heads out to the village where there's an outdoor festival with dancing.
  • Damon is there too. This spells trouble.
  • The two talk and dance all evening and sparks start flying once again.
  • After the dance, Damon walks Eustacia home and the two talk about their marriages.
  • Thomasin is pregnant and Damon learns about Clym being nearly blind now.
  • They spy Diggory Venn coming towards them, so Damon sneaks off and Eustacia greets Diggory by herself.
  • Diggory decides it's time to do his super-spy routine again and goes over to Thomasin's house to "visit" her husband.
  • Thomasin informs him that Damon isn't home and Diggory grills her for more info.
  • After Damon arrives home he learns that Diggory was there asking for him. Damon is a bit concerned.