Study Guide

Wuthering Heights

Wuthering Heights Summary

In the winter of 1801, our narrator, Lockwood, shows up at Wuthering Heights to make arrangements with Heathcliff to rent the nearby manor, Thrushcross Grange. (These names are insane, we know.) Heathcliff, the landlord, makes no effort to be pleasant (read: he's a Gloomy Gus) and immediately becomes a source of deep curiosity to Lockwood. A snowstorm forces Lockwood to spend the night at Wuthering Heights, and he has crazy nightmares complete with a wailing ghost named Catherine Linton trying to come through the window. Cheery!

Settled into his new house, Lockwood invites the housekeeper, Ellen "Nelly" Dean, to tell the story of the curious inhabitants of Wuthering Heights. Nelly is all too happy to recount the dark tale of the Earnshaws, the Lintons, and, mostly, Heathcliff.

We jump into the past as Nelly recounts the story. Nelly starts to work for the Earnshaws as a young girl. Everything is fine until Mr. Earnshaw takes a trip to Liverpool and returns with a swarthy little orphan child named Heathcliff. Though Earnshaw's daughter, Catherine, takes to the boy after only some initial aversion, the son, Hindley, resents his father's favoritism of the strange, mannerless boy.

Soon Catherine and Heathcliff are inseparable, but Hindley's bitterness has only grown, so he goes off to college. Catherine and Heathcliff briefly enjoy a sort of idyllic, adventurous childhood out on the stormy moors and snuggling in the oak-paneled bed.

When Mr. Earnshaw dies, Hindley returns from college, with his new wife Frances, to claim his place as master of Wuthering Heights. College hasn't altered Hindley's feelings toward Heathcliff, so he decides to make life miserable for his adopted brother by treating him like a servant.

With Hindley acting the tyrant, Catherine provides Heathcliff's only solace. They remain allies and friends. One night Heathcliff and Catherine ramble down to Thrushcross Grange to spy on the Linton children, Edgar and Isabella, who live a pampered and protected existence. When a dog bites Catherine, she is forced to stay at the Grange for five weeks to recuperate. While there, she captures the affections of young Edgar. Back at Wuthering Heights, life without Catherine has been miserable for Heathcliff, but with Edgar in the picture things will never be the same.

Frances dies after giving birth to a son, Hareton. Without his wife to help tone down his rage, Hindley becomes even more vengeful toward Heathcliff. Hindley resents his new son, and he becomes an abusive alcoholic. His primary activity is making life miserable for Heathcliff and, as a consequence, for everyone else in the house.

Though Catherine confesses to Nelly an all-consuming love for Heathcliff, she still marries Edgar. (Even out on the isolated moors, social class dictates whom you marry.) Heathcliff takes off for three years to who knows where. When he returns, Heathcliff finds Catherine and Edgar married and living at Thrushcross Grange.

Heathcliff is now on a mission of revenge against Hindley, who is in even worse shape than before. Loaded with a bunch of money gained during his mysterious absence, Heathcliff sets into motion his master plan to acquire Wuthering Heights and Thrushcross Grange. Heathcliff exploits the fact that Hindley is a drunken mess and engages him in extended bouts of gambling that eventually lead Hindley to mortgage Wuthering Heights to pay his debts. The house now belongs to Heathcliff.

Heathcliff continues to visit Catherine at Thrushcross Grange, though her husband Edgar treats him like a low-born outsider. In order to acquire Edgar's property, Heathcliff marries Isabella Linton, who brings out all of his abusive instincts.

A violent argument between Edgar and Heathcliff sends Catherine to the sickbed, from which she never really recovers. She does, however, give birth to a daughter, also named Catherine. When Catherine dies, Heathcliff's sorrow and rage increase and he pleads for Catherine's ghost to haunt him.

Unable to take his abusiveness any longer, Isabella flees for London, where she gives birth to a son, Linton Heathcliff.

For the next thirteen years, Nelly Dean stays at Thrushcross Grange to raise Catherine, a feisty daddy's girl. Edgar and Nelly make sure that Catherine knows nothing of Wuthering Heights or its master. But, like her mother, Catherine is drawn to adventure and wants to explore the moors and all of its craggy, windswept spots. When Nelly forbids her to leave the property of Thrushcross Grange, Catherine goes off on her own. She ends up at Wuthering Heights, where she meets Hindley's son Hareton. Heathcliff's despicable treatment of the young man has turned Hareton into a grunting, uneducated oaf. Still, Catherine is happy to have some companionship.

When Isabella dies, Edgar retrieves his fragile, dismal nephew Linton and brings him back to live with them at Thrushcross Grange. Heathcliff has other plans, and demands that his son live with him, though Linton did not even know his father existed. The contrast between Linton and Hareton is stark, but Heathcliff can't stand either of them.

Eventually young Catherine encounters Heathcliff on the moors and ventures to Wuthering Heights, where she meets Linton, whom she only vaguely remembers. She and Linton begin a secret correspondence of love letters sent via the milk-fetcher. When Edgar and Nelly become sick and bedbound, Catherine begins to sneak up to Wuthering Heights to visit Linton. The miserable and suffering Linton becomes a tool of his father's plot for revenge—marrying Catherine would ensure that Linton inherits Thrushcross Grange.

At a prearranged meeting between Catherine and Linton, Heathcliff lures Nelly and Catherine back to Wuthering Heights, where he imprisons them and forces Catherine to marry Linton. Soon after, Edgar dies and so does the sickly, young Linton. Heathcliff is now master of both Wuthering Height and Thrushcross Grange. He keeps his widowed daughter-in-law with him at Wuthering Heights so that she can work for him as a common servant. He rents out Thrushcross Grange to Lockwood.

Nelly's story is now complete. Lockwood's fascination with Heathcliff has turned to disgust and he gives notice to Heathcliff that he will be leaving Thrushcross Grange to return to London. Six months later, however, he is back in the neighborhood and visits Nelly, who gives him an update on the dramatic tale.

Despite her initial rejection of Hareton as an illiterate boor, Catherine warms to him and begins teaching him how to read. Heathcliff finds himself too obsessed with the dead Catherine to even care about the younger generation or even to bother eating or sleeping. Instead of continuing his cycle of abuse and revenge, he wanders the moors, stares into the middle distance, and makes broken-hearted appeals to Catherine's ghost. Heathcliff dies in the oak-paneled bed, a water-logged, grimacing stiff.

Hareton and Catherine inherit the two houses. They plan to marry on New Year's day and have created a new atmosphere of renewal and hope. Lockwood leaves the happy lovers and passes by the gravestones of Catherine, Heathcliff, and Edgar. Heathcliff's grave plot is fresh and not yet covered with grass.

  • Chapter 1

    • Wuthering Heights begins with Lockwood reflecting upon a recent first visit to his landlord, Mr. Heathcliff, "a capital fellow" (1.1) with whom Lockwood anticipates he has a lot in common. He's hoping they will hang out a lot because there's not much to do out on the moors, where the story is set.
    • First, it's important to notice that what Lockwood tells us as readers and what he shows us of his experiences can be a little inconsistent. This book is full of flashbacks, and this one is our first. Here's what he recounts about this important encounter: Heathcliff is teeth-clenchingly tense and doesn't seem very excited about renting his house, Thrushcross Grange, to Lockwood. (Heathcliff doesn't seem like such a "capital fellow," does he?)
    • They enter the house and Lockwood realizes that there is only one "domestic" (servant), which might explain why the house is in such disrepair. Joseph is the do-it-all house man, and he is just as surly as Heathcliff. He's old, crusty, and a religious zealot, constantly grumbling and cursing.
    • Lockwood provides a brief description of Heathcliff's house, Wuthering Heights. The word "wuthering," he tells us, comes from the stormy conditions that characterize the region. Thankfully, the house looks strong. It also has all sorts of elaborate designs around the front door—gothic-looking details, the date 1500, and the name "Hareton Earnshaw." We know that the date is now 1801, so the house is 300 years old.
    • The inside of the house is not much more inviting than the outside. It's far from warm and cozy. No one is cooking. Instead, there are, among other random items, some "sundry villainous old guns, and a couple of horse pistols" (1.14).
    • Instead of meeting the typical farmer who would usually live in this type of house, we find Heathcliff, who immediately becomes a subject of great fascination to Lockwood. He doesn't look like the kind of person you'd find in a place like this: he is more "dark-skinned gypsy" (1.21), as Lockwood calls him, than country squire. But Lockwood is pretty sure he has him figured out, and he goes to great lengths to express how Heathcliff is his kind of people.
    • Lockwood then briefly flashes back to the previous summer, when he fell for some "goddess," but didn't let her know how he felt. He pretty much blew her off when he found out she was interested in him, but he wants to make sure we still think he's a nice guy.
    • Back to the kitchen with Lockwood, Heathcliff, and company. At this point we meet a heap of unfriendly dogs. Heathcliff tells Lockwood to lay off them, but Lockwood makes faces at them, and they attack. A "lusty dame" (1.26) enters the kitchen and breaks up the assault with a frying pan and a few choice words.
    • Lockwood can tell Heathcliff doesn't want him around, but that's not going to stop him.
  • Chapter 2

    • Lockwood ventures back through "heath and mud" (2.1) for another visit to Wuthering Heights. The gate is locked, so he jumps over it, only to find the front door locked too. He is clearly not one to take no for an answer, so he knocks until Joseph yells at him through the door.
    • Standing in the snow, Lockwood finally gets the attention of a young man who lets him into the kitchen. There he finds a woman he addresses as "Mrs. Heathcliff." She only speaks to tell him he should not have left the house and that the aggressive pack of dogs does not belong to her.
    • Lockwood spends a good amount of time checking out the "missis." She's blonde, young, and skinny, but has a look of scorn that even Lockwood can't fail to notice.
    • Also joining them in the kitchen is the young man who let him into the house. It's not clear who he is—he looks like a "common labourer" (2.33) but doesn't treat the missis with much respect, so now Lockwood is really confused.
    • Enter Heathcliff, not surprisingly unhappy to see Lockwood in his kitchen a second time. Heathcliff's harsh manner with the unidentifiable young man makes Lockwood finally realize that he might not be such a nice fellow after all. After putting his foot in his mouth several times, Lockwood realizes that the missis is, in fact, Heathcliff's daughter-in-law, and the cranky young fellow is Hareton Earnshaw. Remember the name above the door? Hmm.
    • As all of this is going down, a huge snowstorm has arrived, preventing Lockwood from leaving. No one is interested in helping him home, Heathcliff resents having to show any hospitality, and the dogs—Gnasher and Wolf—become so excited by the scene that they floor Lockwood, giving him a bloody nose. Finally the wretched group brings Lockwood back in and gives him some brandy.
  • Chapter 3

    • Lockwood is ushered upstairs to a bedroom and warned that Heathcliff would not be happy if he found out anyone was sleeping there.
    • The bed is a curious structure, with sliding panels and windows. Inside are a bunch of old books and a ledge with names scribbled on it: Catherine Earnshaw, Catherine Heathcliff, and Catherine Linton. Other books have journal entries in the margins and on the blank pages. Reading them, Lockwood provides a flashback to when Heathcliff and the author of the entries were young children together.
    • This is what we learn: Hindley (whoever that is) runs the house when father is gone. Catherine describes him as a "tyrant." Between Hindley's cruelty and Joseph's oppressive preaching, things are pretty grim. Hindley treats Heathcliff like a servant and outsider—though it's not yet clear exactly who all these people are to each other.
    • Catherine and Heathcliff console each other by hiding under furniture or running on the moors. It all reads like a drop of joy in a sea of oppressive misery.
    • Back to the present: Lockwood drifts into a psychedelic dream about Joseph and a visit to a chapel in which he sits though an endless sermon by one Jabes Branderham. The sermon culminates with all present in the chapel attacking one another while Branderham hammers on the pulpit in an effort to bring order to the crowd.
    • A delirious Lockwood awakens to realize that a pine cone at the window is the real cause of the loud taps. Because the window is soldered shut, Lockwood has to break it and reach out to move the branch.
    • The branch turns out to be an ice cold hand and a voice moaning "Let me in" (3.47). Identifying itself as "Catherine Linton," the voice declares that it has "come home" (3.49). Rather than just letting the miserable ghost in, our ninny of a narrator rubs the hand "to and fro" (3.50) across the broken glass in an effort to release its frosty clutch. The ghost moans some other vital information that doesn't compel Lockwood to be any more sympathetic.
    • Heathcliff comes in to see what the racket is. He is visibly shocked to see his bumbling tenant in the noisy oak-paneled bed.
    • Lockwood tells Heathcliff about his dreams, and the ghost, and says he is convinced that the house is haunted. Heathcliff becomes emotional but tries to hide it. Lockwood knows something's up, though, when he sees Heathcliff sobbing and shouting out the broken window: "Cathy, do come. Oh, do—once more! Oh! My heart's darling, hear me this time—Catherine at last!" (3.83).
    • Now we know that in addition to being really irritable, Heathcliff is heartbroken. He basically wants to be haunted by a ghost. What's up with that?
    • Lockwood spends the rest of the night sitting in the kitchen, watching the various household members insult each other. At dawn, Lockwood wanders back to Thrushcross Grange in the thick snow. He's a mess.
  • Chapter 4

    • We meet Mrs. (Nelly) Dean, the diehard housekeeper at Thrushcross Grange. When Lockwood finds out she had been there for eighteen years, he lures her into providing gossip about Heathcliff and his bad-tempered housemates. She is only too willing to tell him the story, and she becomes our new narrator.
    • Mrs. Dean lets us know some vital pieces of Heathcliff's story. It's important to remember that with each new narrator, we also get a new point of view. Where Lockwood is naïve, Mrs. Dean is cynical, having spent so many years taking care of Thrushcross Grange.
    • Here's what Mrs. Dean tells Lockwood about the cast of characters up at Wuthering Heights. Get ready because it's really a cluster:
    • Heathcliff is rich and greedy, which is why he is renting out Thrushcross Grange. His wife is dead. The young lady is Catherine Linton. Her father, Edgar Linton, used to own Thrushcross Grange.
    • Heathcliff was married to Edgar Linton's sister, Isabella. The fumbling young man is Catherine Linton's cousin, Hareton Earnshaw. He's the last of the Earnshaw family line (remember the inscription over the door?). Strange that he doesn't seem to be master of the house. What's the story with that?
    • So why, Lockwood wants to know, is Heathcliff such a jerk? (He calls Heathcliff a "churl," but you get the point.)
    • Mrs. Dean knows Heathcliff's whole story—"except where he was born, and who his parents were, and how he got his money at first" (4.33).
    • So now we know that Heathcliff is a big mystery—the dark-orphan-from-the-nineteenth-century-novel figure. But instead of becoming an orphan in the story (like so many Dickens characters), Heathcliff is adopted. So Brontë is reversing that popular Victorian motif. Anyway, back to the story:
    • Mrs. Dean worked up at Wuthering Heights for a long time. She starts her story by recalling when Mr. Earnshaw—"the old master" (4.40)—leaves and returns from a trip to Liverpool with a "dirty, ragged, black-haired child" (4.46): Heathcliff.
    • There's not a lot of excitement or love coming from Mr. Earnshaw's two children (Hindley and Catherine), and even Mrs. Earnshaw doesn't want the "gipsy brat" (4.46) in the house, seeing as they already have their own "bairns to feed" (4.46). Not the nicest reception for young Heathcliff, who, explains Mr. Earnshaw, was starving and homeless in the streets of Liverpool.
    • It's all very suspicious, but Heathcliff is now in the family, for better or worse. (Mostly worse.)
    • Immediately, Heathcliff is the object of abuse from everyone but Mr. Earnshaw, whose protectiveness and favoritism just makes everyone even more jealous and ticked off. "So from the beginning [Heathcliff] bred bad feeling in the house" (4.55), Mrs. Dean ominously informs Lockwood.
    • As a child, Heathcliff spends a lot of time threatening to tell on Hindley, and Hindley calls Heathcliff a lot of names, like "gipsy" and "imp of Satan." A lot of resentment accumulates all around.
  • Chapter 5

    • As Mr. Earnshaw gets older (and sick), he becomes more and more protective of Heathcliff. His preferential treatment doesn't help the young boy one bit.
    • Thankfully, Hindley goes off to college.
    • Meanwhile, Catherine is growing up into a little troublemaker herself, but she's still sweet and pretty, and an Earnshaw, so she gets away with it. Her biggest problem, according to Mrs. Dean, is that she is overly fond of Heathcliff. She is with him all the time.
    • Inevitably, Mr. Earnshaw dies, and now all Heathcliff has is Catherine. With no one else in the house liking him, trouble looms.
  • Chapter 6

    • Hindley comes home from college for the funeral, which is bad news, because now he's master of the house. On top of that, he has a wife, Frances, who is ready to help him run the show. Mrs. Dean thinks the wife's a silly nitwit, but her suspicious coughing lets us know she probably won't be around for long anyway.
    • Now that Hindley is boss, things are going to change around Wuthering Heights. When Frances expresses her dislike of Heathcliff, it stokes Hindley's animosity all over again. Hindley decides to start treating his adoptive brother like a servant, reducing him to a farmhand and depriving him of an education.
    • Heathcliff consoles himself with the friendship and love of Catherine. The two of them steer clear of Hindley and spend a lot of time enjoying idyllic childhood activities like romping around on the moors. Having each other makes living with the tyrant Hindley okay.
    • But everything changes when Heathcliff comes home late one night without Catherine. Mrs. Dean demands an explanation, and this is what Heathcliff tells her:
    • Catherine and Heathcliff had decided it would be fun to go spy on the Linton family down at Thrushcross Grange. (There's not a lot going on around the moors.) Peering into the house, they see that it is everything Wuthering Heights is not: colorful, bright, and well-lit (and with no cranky Joseph telling them they are all going to hell).
    • Catherine and Heathcliff see the Linton children—Edgar and Isabella—fighting over a dog. Catherine and Heathcliff can't imagine this—they are much too in love and have other things to worry about, like a drunken sot of a guardian.
    • When the Linton children detect the intruders, Catherine and Heathcliff try to make a run for it, but another dog, Skulker, gets her. (Can you believe how many unruly dogs there are in this story?)
    • The kids are dragged into Thrushcross Grange by a servant, and Heathcliff is subjected to a round of insults based on his race and class. He's made to know he is an outsider—a "villain," the "son of fortune teller," "a gipsy," "a Spanish castaway," and so forth. Basically a lot is made of the fact that he has dark skin.
    • Heathcliff is locked out and sent on his way. Catherine remains behind while her wound heals and she is treated like a princess. Now Heathcliff has no one.
  • Chapter 7

    • Five weeks later, Catherine returns to Wuthering Heights, and you can bet that was a long five weeks for Heathcliff. Without her around, Heathcliff was neglected and abused even more than usual.
    • Catherine has changed a lot during her stay at Thrushcross Grange. No longer the tomboyish wild child, she is composed and groomed, looking quite the little lady.
    • Hindley and Frances look on as the friends are reunited—a polished young miss and swarthy, "beclouded" Heathcliff. No one can fail to see the contrast between them, and Hindley refers to Heathcliff as a servant, leaving him humiliated and bitter.
    • The Lintons are invited to Wuthering Heights and Nelly Dean sets out to clean up Heathcliff. After pouting and fasting, Heathcliff approaches Mrs. Dean, exclaiming, "Nelly, make me decent, I'm going to be good" (7.33).
    • Nelly cautions Heathcliff to watch his behavior around Edgar Linton, who, though fair-skinned, blue-eyed, well-behaved, and rich, is also far less strong and well-built than Heathcliff.
    • Though now groomed and well-mannered, Heathcliff is kept away from the company by Hindley, who proceeds to torment him with names like "vagabond" and "coxcomb." When Edgar Linton pipes in, Heathcliff throws a tureen of hot applesauce in his face. That's gotta hurt.
    • Hindley banishes Heathcliff to his room for the remainder of the evening.
    • Meanwhile, Catherine alternates between lively participation in the party and dark moodiness while lurking in the stairwell.
    • When Heathcliff finally emerges, he makes a solemn vow to Nelly Dean: "I'm trying to settle how I shall pay Hindley back. I don't care how long I wait, if I can only do it at last. I hope he will not die before I do" (7.69).
    • Thus, the revenge plot is set in motion. Now things start to get really ugly.
    • Nelly Dean's narrative stops as she tries to skip over a few years, but Lockwood insists she include all of the details. She is now up to the summer of 1778, which, she remarks, is "nearly twenty-three years ago" (7.87).
  • Chapter 8

    • Frances gives birth to Hareton, the last of the Earnshaw line. Sick from consumption, Frances dies in childbirth. Nelly must now raise the baby, as Hindley turns into a cursing, raving mess. "The servants could not bear his tyrannical and evil conduct long" (8.18), Nelly reports, so only she and Joseph remain with the family.
    • Hindley's treatment of Heathcliff gets worse. "I could not half tell what an infernal house we had" (8.21), Nelly tells Lockwood.
    • Catherine is out of control, but remains steadfastly loyal to Heathcliff, while Edgar Linton vies for her affection. She develops a "double character" (8.26)—at home she's rude and rough, but in the company of the Lintons she's genteel and polite.
    • Nelly Dean recounts one day when Edgar Linton dared visit Catherine in the troubled house. Hindley orders Nelly to chaperone the two lovebirds, which angers Catherine, who pinches and slaps the housekeeper. When Edgar tries to reason with her, Catherine hits him as well.
    • Instead of leaving, Edgar likes Catherine even more—he's hooked. As Nelly puts it: "[H]e possessed the power to depart, as much as a cat possesses the power to leave a mouse half killed, or a bird half eaten" (8.87).
    • They confess that they're in love.
  • Chapter 9

    • Hindley comes home in a drunk and violent state. When Nelly Dean tries to shield Hareton from his father's wrath, Hindley puts a knife in her mouth.
    • Hindley drops Hareton from the top of the stairs and Heathcliff catches him. Though he desires nothing more than to ruin Hindley, Heathcliff rescues the child on instinct. Giving no thanks, Hindley proceeds to drink, seethe, and rave.
    • Nelly Dean consoles baby Hareton in the kitchen. Catherine comes in for a little one-on-one with her. Neither realizes that Heathcliff can hear the whole conversation.
    • It turns out Edgar has asked Catherine to marry him. She cites the various reasons she loves him, but admits that it doesn't feel right. She and Heathcliff are made of the same stuff, but Hindley has brought Heathcliff so low that, even though she loves him, it would degrade her to marry Heathcliff.
    • Nelly realizes that Heathcliff has overheard the confession up to this point. He has now departed.
    • Catherine foolishly believes she will be able to maintain her friendship with Heathcliff after she marries Edgar.
    • She makes the vital distinction between her love for the two men: "My love for Linton is like the foliage in the woods. Time will change it. […] My love for Heathcliff resembles the eternal rocks beneath […]. Nelly, I am Heathcliff—he's always, always in my mind […]" (9.101).
    • Things might have gone a little differently if Heathcliff had heard that last bit, no?
    • Nelly tells Catherine that Heathcliff heard part of her confession and that he has left Wuthering Heights. Catherine becomes hysterical.
    • Now Catherine is sick, and Mr. Kenneth, the village doctor, "pronounced her dangerously ill" (9.147). Catherine goes to convalesce at Thrushcross Grange. While she is there, Mr. and Mrs. Linton (parents of Edgar and Isabella) both die from Catherine's fever.
    • Three years go by and Catherine and Edgar marry. Nelly moves with the couple down to Thrushcross Grange, where they will live with Isabella Linton.
    • Hindley, Hareton, and Joseph stay at Wuthering Heights.
    • Heathcliff is still AWOL.
  • Chapter 10

    • Lockwood returns to the story, complaining about his continued illness. He can't wait to hear what happened to Heathcliff and is full of speculation.
    • Nelly informs him: "I stated before that I didn't know how he gained his money; neither am I aware of the means he took to raise his mind from the savage ignorance into which it was sunk" (10.9).
    • For about six months, everything at Thrushcross Grange is going well: Catherine clearly loves Edgar, Edgar avoids upsetting her, and Isabella and Catherine get along.
    • Then Heathcliff returns. Edgar reluctantly allows him into the parlor, suggesting that the kitchen is more suitable for his kind. But nothing can suppress Catherine's giddy enthusiasm.
    • Heathcliff has changed dramatically in three years. Nelly describes his "transformation" into a "tall, athletic, well-formed man […with] upright carriage" and look of intelligence with "no marks of former degradation" (10.53). To put it bluntly, his makeover has been extreme. Everyone is surprised.
    • Heathcliff admits that he has returned, in part, to settle his score with Hindley. Still, he plans to return to Wuthering Heights. Nelly has a bad feeling.
    • Catherine confides in Nelly that Heathcliff has already been up to Wuthering Heights, playing cards and gambling with Hindley. A desperate drunkard, Hindley allows Heathcliff to stay so he can collect rent and gamble. He has no clue about Heathcliff's plan for revenge—he's too pickled.
    • Heathcliff starts coming around to Thrushcross Grange and, as if Edgar doesn't have enough reasons not to like him, his sister Isabella develops a major crush.
    • Catherine mocks Isabella for loving Heathcliff, warning her that Heathcliff is "an unreclaimed creature, without refinement, without cultivation [. . .]" (10.98) who would marry her just to claim the Linton fortune.
    • Heathcliff shows up, and Catherine seizes the chance to humiliate Isabella. Hearing of her crush, Heathcliff describes the pleasure he would take in decorating her face with bruises. But the fact that she is her brother's heir is alluring to him.
  • Chapter 11

    • Nelly Dean is overwhelmed by a feeling of dread one day while out for a walk. Fearing something awful is happening at Wuthering Heights—particularly to little Hareton—she heads up to the house.
    • Young Hareton has become a cursing, violent young boy. Living with "Devil daddy," as he calls Hindley, he is a pure product of his environment.
    • Heathcliff continues to visit Thrushcross Grange and begins making the moves on Isabella. He tells Catherine that she has no right to object and that she has treated him like a dog. Nothing will get in the way of revenge against all who have degraded him, though he assures Catherine, "I seek no revenge on you" (11.51).
    • Edgar shows up and tries to kick Heathcliff out of the house. When Edgar tells Nelly to "fetch the men" (11.67), Catherine mocks him as a coward, telling him he deserves to be beaten down by Heathcliff. Heathcliff realizes it's time to beat a hasty retreat.
    • Edgar tells Catherine that she must choose between him and Heathcliff. She flies into a rage and locks herself in her room.
  • Chapter 12

    • For several days, Isabella mopes around, Catherine pouts in her room, and Edgar worries about his wife. Catherine believes she is dying and is infuriated when Nelly Dean tells her that Edgar has been reading contentedly in the library, in "philosophical resignation" (12.18). (Of course, Nelly is just trying to make Catherine mad—and it works!)
    • Catherine actually does get sick and, in a feverish delirium, she begins to name all of the bird feathers coming out of her pillow. She starts hallucinating, doesn't recognize her own reflection in the mirror, and tells Nelly that in her confused state she thought she was back home at Wuthering Heights. She starts to recall her childhood—the oak-paneled bed, the wild adventures on the moors, and her love of Heathcliff.
    • Now completely babbling and convinced she is at death's door, she raves, "I'll not lie [in the ground] by myself; they may bury me twelve feet deep, and throw the church down over me, but I won't rest until you are with me. I never will!" (12.52).
    • Edgar finally comes to see Catherine. Nelly wises up and goes to seek medical attention. In the garden, she finds Isabella's pet dog, Fanny, hanging by the neck, nearly dead. The sounds of galloping horses echo in the distance.
    • Mr. Kenneth tells Nelly that he has heard on "good authority" that Isabella has run off with Heathcliff. Nelly is too scared to tell Edgar, but when he does find out, he seems resigned to her decision.
  • Chapter 13

    • Catherine's brain fever worsens, but under Edgar's close care, she recovers. Well, almost. She's pregnant.
    • In the meantime, Isabella has sent a letter to Edgar announcing her marriage to Heathcliff. He doesn't reply.
    • Two weeks later, she writes to Nelly announcing that she is living up at the Heights. She also has a few choice words about her new residence and her spouse.
    • Isabella briefly takes over the narrative, as she tells Nelly in the letter that she basically thinks Heathcliff is the devil. The house is a pigsty and Hareton is a little hooligan. Joseph is still a ranting, cursing crank and Hindley is a ghost of his former self, having been worn down by his own issues and the vengeful abuse of his roommate/semi-brother Heathcliff. It's a real ragtag gang—not the kind of company Isabella is used to keeping.
    • Isabella already misses the Grange and realizes she will have no allies at the Heights. On top of all of that, there are no servants to show her to her "chamber" and treat her in the way she is accustomed.
    • Hindley shows Isabella his gun and warns her to lock her bedroom door because he is planning to murder Heathcliff. Hindley's confessions reveal that he has lost a heap of money and is now in Heathcliff's debt. Heathcliff would kill him or kick him out, but he wants his money back.
    • Isabella spends the night sleeping in a chair in Hareton's room. Heathcliff comes looking for her in the middle of the night. He tells her Catherine is sick and that it is her brother's fault. Heathcliff also tells her that until he can get to Edgar, he will make Isabella suffer in his place.
    • She closes the letter, and her narration, by begging Nelly to send help.
  • Chapter 14

    • Nelly resumes the narrative.
    • Edgar tells Nelly he will have nothing to do with Isabella now that she has married "the villain." Nelly decides to go up to the Heights herself to check on Isabella.
    • The house is a shambles, and Isabella is making no effort to keep up her surroundings or her own appearance. Heathcliff, however, "never looked better" (14.9).
    • Nelly tells Isabella that Edgar will not be contacting her. She tells Heathcliff that Catherine is recovering from her illness and that he should let her be. He, of course, won't stand for that, and Nelly warns him, "Another encounter between you and the master would kill her altogether!" (14.20).
    • Heathcliff rants about how great Catherine's love is for him, compared to her love for Edgar. He says Isabella fell in love with the idea—or "delusion"—that he was a hero. She now knows better, but she still loves him no matter how vile he is. "No brutality disgusted her"(14.35), he tells Nelly.
    • Heathcliff forces Nelly to arrange a meeting with Catherine. She walks back to the Grange with a heavy heart.
  • Chapter 15

    • Lockwood has heard the whole story now and decides to tell a condensed version.
    • Several days go by, and Nelly finally gathers the courage to inform Catherine of Heathcliff's desired visit. Catherine is still wrecked from being sick and just sits and stares out of the open window.
    • Heathcliff marches right into Catherine's room, declaring, "Oh, Cathy! Oh, my life! how can I bear it?" (15.21).
    • Catherine scolds him for his actions, saying he is killing her and wishes they were both dead. He grips her until he leaves bruises on her skin, assuring her that he is tortured too.
    • Catherine announces that life is a prison, that she wants to die and take Heathcliff with her. Lots of hugging, kissing, and crying ensue as Heathcliff demands to know why Catherine betrayed him, and her heart, by marrying Edgar.
    • Nelly watches the whole drama unfold but becomes nervous when she realizes that Edgar will be home from chapel soon. Edgar storms in but ignores Heathcliff because Catherine is such a mess.
    • Heathcliff consents to leave, but says he will stay outside in the garden for as long as he pleases.
  • Chapter 16

    • That night little Catherine is born, two months premature, and her mother dies in childbirth. Edgar begins mourning. On top of the whole mess, he has no heir (girls don't count).
    • Nelly goes out to the garden to break the news to Heathcliff, but he already knows. Still, he begs for all of the grisly details and, of course, wants to know if she mentioned him.
    • Heathcliff doesn't want Catherine to rest in peace. He cannot live without her, and he cries out for her to haunt him.
    • Heathcliff sneaks into the house to say one final goodbye to Catherine in her coffin. As a parting gesture, he replaces Edgar's hair in the locket around her neck with a lock of his own.
    • Instead of being buried in a chapel or with the Linton family, Catherine's body is laid to rest outside, near the moor and peat mould (decomposed vegetable matter that covers uncultivated land—the "mould" part is because it is saturated with water).
  • Chapter 17

    • Nelly tends to the new baby while Edgar keeps to his room.
    • Isabella shows up, having run all the way from Wuthering Heights in the snow. Nelly tends to Isabella's cuts and bruises. Isabella throws her wedding ring into the fire, though it is clear that she would go back to Heathcliff if he showed even the slightest interest in her.
    • Isabella tells Nelly that she plans to escape from Heathcliff because "He's not a human being" (17.18).
    • Isabella takes over the narrative again, telling Nelly about Heathcliff's recent behavior. One night, Hindley locks Heathcliff out of the house and shows Isabella his gun again, resolving to murder Heathcliff. Isabella shouts out a warning to Heathcliff. Heathcliff bursts into the house and beats the living daylights out of Hindley. The next morning he looks a mess. He broods in the corner, paying no attention to Hindley or Isabella until she provokes him by talking about Catherine. He hurls a knife at her.
    • Isabella ends her visit with Nelly and leaves the Grange, never to return.
    • Nelly describes Edgar's mourning after Catherine's death and the deep affection he develops for baby Catherine, whom he calls Cathy—a nickname he never used with his wife.
    • Six months after Catherine's death, Hindley finally dies too. Mr. Kenneth, the hardworking doctor, reports the details to Nelly: Hindley died a drunkard at the age of twenty-seven.
    • Now Nelly is really worried about Hareton living up at the Heights alone with crazy Uncle Heathcliff.
    • Going up there to arrange Hindley's funeral, Nelly witnesses two triumphs for Heathcliff, who announces to Hareton, "Now, my bonny lad, you are mine! And we'll see if one tree won't grow as crooked as another, with the same wind to twist it!" (17.119). In other words, Heathcliff plans to run Hareton into the ground by giving him the same treatment he (Heathcliff) received from Hindley. Heathcliff is now master of Wuthering Heights, which Hindley mortgaged to finance his gambling habit. Hareton inherits nothing.
  • Chapter 18

    • Cathy is growing up a favorite of her father. She is not allowed to leave the grounds of Thrushcross Grange and has no notion of Heathcliff or Wuthering Heights. However, like her mother, she yearns to explore the moors and a certain rock formation called Penistone Crags. Because you have to go past the Heights to get there, Edgar forbids it.
    • Isabella has moved to London and had a son, Linton Heathcliff, who is now twelve. Dying, Isabella persuades Edgar to come to bid her farewell and take her child.
    • When Edgar leaves, Nelly is left alone to watch after young Cathy. She allows Cathy to ramble around the Grange playing games, but she always keeps the gates locked. Sure enough, one day Cathy takes off and goes straight up to Wuthering Heights.
    • Nelly goes off to the Heights in search of Cathy, and finds the girl happily chatting with the shy, awkward Hareton. As it turns out Heathcliff is not at home.
    • Angry at Cathy, Nelly tries to make the girl go home right away, but Cathy resists leaving the Heights. She thinks it's Hareton's house, but when she finds out it isn't, Cathy starts treating him like a servant. She's shocked when he starts cussing her out.
    • Nelly angrily tells Cathy that the rude and rough young man she thought was a servant is her cousin, Hareton. Cathy refuses to accept that and insists that her father is going to London to get her cousin (Linton Heathcliff). Apparently she doesn't know you can have more than one cousin.
    • Nelly observes the young man that Hareton has become—"a well-made, athletic youth, good-looking in features, and stout and healthy" (18.78). Heathcliff has denied him any education, so between his uncle and Joseph he has grown up without manners or guidance of any sort.
    • Nelly tells Cathy that her father would be very unhappy if he heard she was at the Heights.
  • Chapter 19

    • Edgar sends a letter from London announcing that Isabella is dead and that he will be returning with her son, Linton Heathcliff. They finally arrive, and Cathy excitedly meets her cousin, a "pale, delicate, effeminate boy" (19.9).
    • Joseph comes down from the Heights to take Linton home to his father. Edgar feels terrible, because he had promised Isabella that he would watch over her son. But he has no choice—Heathcliff is the boy's father, after all.
    • Edgar tells him the boy will come to the Heights the next day.
  • Chapter 20

    • Nelly wakes Linton up at 5 o'clock in the morning to take him to his father. Because his mother never mentioned his father, Linton is surprised and confused. Linton is full of questions about his father, questions Nelly answers reluctantly.
    • Nelly and Linton arrive at the Heights. "Hallo, Nelly!" Heathcliff cries. "I feared I should have to come down and fetch my property myself" (20.29). That "property," of course, is the son he has never met.
    • They get off to a rough start, with Heathcliff making comments about his son's appearance. He announces that the only reason he will put up with his son is that he is the heir to everything—including Thrushcross Grange.
    • As Nelly leaves the Heights, she hears Linton crying out, begging not to be left behind.
  • Chapter 21

    • Cathy is not happy to have lost her new cousin and playmate so quickly.
    • The housekeeper from the Heights updates Nelly on how things are going between Linton and his father—as expected, not good. Linton is sick all of the time and is "selfish and disagreeable" (21.6).
    • On her sixteenth birthday, Cathy announces that she would like to spend the day on the moors. Of course, she begins to make her way toward Wuthering Heights, and she and Nelly run into Heathcliff, who invites them back to the house, insisting that Cathy come see Linton.
    • As he drags them back to the house, Heathcliff announces his plan to have the cousins (Cathy and Linton) get married, so that he can inherit the Grange when Edgar dies. It's all about property.
    • Cathy is thrilled at finding these relatives living so near to the Grange and chastises Nelly for not telling her about them. Heathcliff mentions Edgar's "prejudice" against him and complains to Nelly that his own son is a wimp.
    • Heathcliff explains to Nelly that he sympathizes with Hareton and yet has enjoyed mistreating him, degrading him, and turning him into an animal who scorns "book-larning"—all as revenge against his father, Hindley.
    • Heathcliff enjoys pitting Hareton against his son in an effort to make Linton seem more appealing to Cathy, simply because he has a glimmer of intelligence next to his oaf of a cousin.
    • Rather than keep the visit a secret, Cathy announces it to her father the next day. Edgar tells her the whole dark story: how Heathcliff ran away with Aunt Isabella and desires only revenge.
    • Cathy wants to begin writing letters to Linton. When Nelly refuses to help her, Cathy finds a milk-fetcher to be her delivery boy. She quickly accumulates a mass of letters, which she hides in a drawer. Nelly collects them all, and when she confronts Cathy about her disobedience, she finds out that Cathy is in love with Linton.
    • Nelly burns the letters and puts an end to the correspondence.
  • Chapter 22

    • Edgar is ill. Nelly takes Cathy out for a walk on the moors to enjoy some fresh air and to cheer her up after ending her little romance. They discuss the possibility of Edgar dying and Cathy announces that she loves Papa and would never "do an act, or say a word to vex him" (22.18). Right.
    • While out on the walk, Cathy drops her hat over a wall and clambers over to retrieve it. Heathcliff comes up the road and, not seeing Nelly on the other side of the wall, scorns Cathy for sending love letters to Linton and then abruptly stopping. He tells Cathy that Linton is heartbroken and dying and threatens to send the love letters to her father.
    • Nelly and Cathy return home. Nelly promises to take Cathy to Wuthering Heights the next day.
  • Chapter 23

    • Nelly and Cathy arrive at the Heights to find Linton, shivering and pathetic, making demands that Joseph flatly ignores.
    • Linton chastises Cathy for ignoring him and complains about his treatment by Heathcliff.
    • Cathy and Linton begin to fight about their parents' relationships. When he tells Cathy that her mother (Catherine) hated her father (Edgar) and was really in love with his father (Heathcliff), Cathy pushes his chair, causing a dramatic scene. Linton can't stop coughing, choking, and whining. (Remember way back when Catherine hit Edgar right before they got engaged? All this violence as foreplay sounds familiar.)
    • When they leave the Heights, Nelly swears to put a lock on the gate so Cathy cannot sneak off again. Cathy responds, "The Grange is not a prison, Ellen, and you are not my jailer" (23.79).
    • Nelly becomes sick for three weeks. With Edgar still ailing and Nelly in bed, Cathy has the freedom to do what she wants.
  • Chapter 24

    • A suspicious Nelly finds out that Cathy has been sneaking away to the Heights during her illness. Nelly forces the truth out of her, and Cathy briefly takes over the narrative.
    • Here's Cathy's story: she goes to the Heights every night while Nelly is sick. She and Linton spend all sorts of time talking and telling stories, finding out how little in common they have.
    • One day, she runs into Hareton, who tries to impress her with the fact that he can now read his own name above the door. She just mocks him and goes into the house. Hareton bursts in and throws a screaming Linton into the kitchen.
    • Linton later blames Cathy for the scene, but they make up. And that's the end of Cathy's narration.
    • Nelly promptly tells Edgar about Cathy's visits to the Heights; again, she is forbidden to go there.
  • Chapter 25

    • Nelly interrupts her narrative to tell Lockwood that her story has now taken them up to the previous winter. She and Lockwood then discuss the possibility of Cathy falling in love with him. Huh?!
    • Nelly resumes her narrative. Edgar presses her for information about his nephew, Linton, wanting to know if he is nearly as bad as his father. He confesses that he is ready to die and that he would be okay with Cathy marrying Linton if he wasn't such a "feeble tool to his father" (25.8).
    • Linton sends a letter to Edgar begging to see Cathy, but it's so well-written that Nelly figures Heathcliff actually wrote it.
    • Eventually Edgar consents to letting Cathy seeing Linton. He is clearly dying and would like for Cathy to live at Wuthering Heights, the home of her ancestors. He figures the only way to do that is by marrying her off to Linton. He has no idea that Linton is as sick as he is.
    • Heathcliff is getting worried because to make his plan work, Cathy must marry Linton; that way he'll get the Grange when his sickly son dies. So now he's in a race against Linton's death and Edgar's willingness to allow the marriage.
  • Chapter 26

    • Edgar allows Cathy to meet with Linton, as long as they stay on Grange property.
    • Nelly and Cathy end up going past the property line and encounter Linton looking worse than ever. He is feeble, pale, and unable to follow the conversation. Something is up—Linton is very worried about what Heathcliff thinks of his behavior toward Cathy.
    • Linton falls asleep and Cathy is now eager to head back to the Grange. They take off just as Heathcliff arrives.
  • Chapter 27

    • Edgar is dying. Linton continues to send appeals to his uncle to see Cathy. Edgar seems open to the idea of Cathy marrying Linton, for as Nelly reports: "Linton's letters bore few or no indications of his defective character" (27.4). Nelly doesn't tell him about Linton's health because she doesn't want to upset Edgar as he is dying.
    • Cathy and Nelly return to meet Linton at the same spot. Linton is extremely agitated. Cathy angrily questions his motives. (If you love me so much, why are you acting like such a freak?)
    • The truth comes out: if Linton doesn't get Cathy to marry him, Heathcliff will kill him. Obviously Linton is a traitor.
    • Heathcliff arrives and insists that Cathy help get the withering boy back into the house. When Cathy maintains that Edgar has forbidden her to go to the Heights, Linton spills the beans that he himself cannot reenter the house without Cathy. So they all go into the house and Heathcliff locks the door and announces, "Had I been born where laws are less strict, and tastes less dainty, I should treat myself to a slow vivisection of those two, as an evening's amusement" (27.45). Wow. He has some seriously dark plans.
    • Cathy tries to fight for the key, but Heathcliff slaps her upside the head. He vows to be her father-in-law by morning.
    • Linton refuses to help Cathy and Nelly escape, as he is more interested in saving his own skin than in letting Cathy be with her father on his deathbed. Heathcliff adds that she came in of her own accord and that she is not going anywhere.
    • Nelly and Cathy spend a long, sleepless night locked in a room, unable to escape through the narrow windows. In the morning, Heathcliff releases Cathy from the room but keeps Nelly there for four days and five nights.
  • Chapter 28

    • On the fifth day, the house servant Zillah finds Nelly. Everyone in the village thought she had sunk beneath the marsh, but Hareton gave Zillah the key to let Nelly out.
    • Nelly finds Linton coughing on the couch. Cathy is locked in a room upstairs and is not allowed to leave. Heathcliff has poisoned Linton against Cathy, telling him she is after his money, and now the young man has no sympathy for his new wife.
    • Heathcliff is outside talking to Doctor Kenneth, who says Edgar is finally really dying. Linton reflects, "I'm glad, for I shall be master of the Grange after him […]" (28.28). Linton's vengefulness is even greater because of another fight he had with Cathy. They had fought over property, and when she pushed him, Heathcliff "struck her down," leaving her with a mouthful of blood (28.30).
    • Nelly returns to the Grange and lies to a dying Edgar about how she and Cathy got into the mess. Edgar realizes he had better change his will so Linton doesn't inherit everything, so they send for the attorney, Mr. Green.
    • Cathy returns to the Grange and hurries to her father's bedside. Edgar dies without a struggle.
    • Mr. Green, the lawyer, shows up (a little late!) and has clearly let Heathcliff bribe him. Green orders everyone out of the Grange and fires all of the servants except Nelly.
    • Cathy briefly recounts her escape from the Heights: she climbed out of her mother's bedroom window.
  • Chapter 29

    • Now that her master is dead, Nelly hopes to stay at the Grange. Heathcliff has other plans, storming into the house as its new master. He announces immediately his intention of bringing Cathy home to the Heights despite her desire to stay at the Grange with Nelly.
    • Ever since Linton helped Cathy escape, Heathcliff has punished him with his very presence. Heathcliff has a plan to rent out the Grange and needs Cathy at Wuthering Heights to help around the house.
    • Heathcliff and Cathy argue over Linton: she claims he is all she loves in the world; Heathcliff announces Linton's intention to be an abusive husband.
    • In his sorrow and rage, Heathcliff briefly takes over the narrative. Heathcliff tells Nelly that he persuaded the sexton to dig up Catherine's grave. He stares at her dusty corpse and bribes the sexton to put his body next to hers when he dies. He has no fear of disturbing the dead, he tells Nelly. Cathy has been haunting him for eighteen years.
    • He continues, "You know I was wild after she died, and eternally, from dawn to dawn, praying her to return to me—her spirit. I have a strong faith in ghosts; I have a conviction that they can, and do exist, among us!" (29.24).
    • He tells Nelly that the day after Catherine died, eighteen years ago, he visited her grave and felt her presence there. He then ran home into her old bedroom. "I felt her by me" (30.30), he says, and has ever since. Seeing her corpse the day before provided a strange feeling of solace.
    • Heathcliff returns to the present. He takes down Catherine's portrait from over the hearth at the Grange and tells Nelly to send it to the Heights. He leaves with Cathy.
  • Chapter 30

    • Nelly tells Lockwood that she has not seen Cathy since that day. Her only source of gossip is Zillah, the housekeeper at the Heights.
    • Zillah briefly takes over the narrative: back at the Heights, Cathy tries to convince Heathcliff that his son is dying. Heathcliff doesn't care and won't spend the money for a doctor.
    • Linton dies. Cathy doesn't come out of her room for two weeks. Finally Heathcliff goes upstairs to show her Linton's will. Linton has left everything to his father, which means Cathy gets nothing.
    • Hareton, Cathy, and Heathcliff are now the only ones left at the Heights. Cathy tells Hareton that he has been cruel to side with Heathcliff. He tells her that he tried to help.
    • Zillah tells Nelly that no one likes Cathy, and that even she thinks the girl is prideful.
    • Nelly's story finally ends. Lockwood announces his plan to go to the Heights and give Heathcliff notice that he will leave the Grange for London.
  • Chapter 31

    • Lockwood goes up to the Heights and delivers a note to Cathy from Nelly. Cathy cannot send a response because she has no paper. Heathcliff has taken everything away from her and Hareton has hidden some of her books in his room.
    • After Cathy humiliates him for his illiteracy, Hareton returns the books to her. When she continues to mock him, he hits her and throws her books into the fire.
    • Lockwood overhears Heathcliff tell himself how much Hareton's face reminds him of Catherine's.
    • Lockwood stays for dinner. As he rides back to the Grange, he muses to himself, "What a realization of something more romantic than a fairy tale it would have been for Mrs. Linton Heathcliff, had she and I struck up an attachment, as her good nurse desired, and migrated together into the stirring atmosphere of the town!" (31.56). He is truly out of it.
  • Chapter 32

    • Some time has passed since Lockwood left, when he finds himself in the vicinity of the Grange.
    • He arrives at the Grange to find that Nelly has moved up to the Heights. Lockwood visits the Heights and is immediately struck by the changes in its appearance. The gate, for once, is not locked. Doors and windows are open and a fire lights up the chimney. More shocking than the change in atmosphere is the fact that Cathy is teaching Hareton to read.
    • Lockwood observes affection between the two cousins, who then leave for a walk.
    • He encounters Nelly, who tells Lockwood that Zillah has left and that she has been at the Heights since he left for London.
    • Nelly tells Lockwood that Heathcliff is dead. Cathy is now in charge of the Grange.
    • Nelly resumes the narrative, telling Lockwood of Heathcliff's "queer" end. She begins:
    • Shortly after Lockwood left the Grange, Heathcliff calls for Nelly to return to the Heights. Cathy spends her time picking on Hareton, though she is clearly interested in his attention.
    • A gun accident confines Hareton to the fireside. Now he and Cathy are stuck together. They make amends. She tells him she is glad that he is her cousin. He informs her that he had often stuck up for her side against Heathcliff.
    • Cathy and Hareton enjoy looking at books and reading together. Though Joseph is disgusted at the sight of any friendship, "the intimacy," Nelly announces, "grew rapidly" (32.110).
    • Back to the present, momentarily, Nelly announces that Hareton and Cathy are soon to be married.
  • Chapter 33

    • Chapter 33 jumps backwards in time a bit.
    • Cathy and Hareton grow closer, though the sight of it annoys both Joseph and Heathcliff. Together they plant a garden, but dig up Joseph's plants to do it.
    • When Heathcliff scolds them for touching the property, Cathy stands up for herself, saying, "You shouldn't grudge a few yards of earth for me to ornament when you have taken all my land!" (33.29). She also accuses Heathcliff of robbing Hareton of his land and money.
    • Heathcliff storms out. He returns later to find Hareton and Cathy reading together. Unexpectedly, Heathcliff does not fly into a rage. Instead he confesses to Nelly that he has lost interest in revenge. "[W]hen everything is ready, and in my power, I find the will to lift a slate off either roof has vanished!" (33.59).
    • Heathcliff continues to be struck by Hareton's resemblance to Catherine. But then, everything reminds him of Catherine. He tells Nelly that he is a changed man. He no longer has the will to live but yearns for only one thing.
  • Chapter 34

    • Heathcliff leaves the house all night. When he returns, Cathy reports that he has a "different" look on his face. When Nelly sees him, he has a "strange joyful glitter in his eyes" (34.12).
    • Heathcliff wanders around the garden in a rare good mood. Nelly tries to get to the bottom of it but he refuses to give her any details, only telling her that heaven is in sight.
    • Heathcliff starts acting really creepy, staring out of windows and looking, Nelly says, like a "goblin." He goes to spend the night in the oak-paneled bed, and Nelly wonders, "Is he a ghoul, or a vampire?" (34.46). After all, no one ever really knew where Heathcliff came from, and he only has the one name, which will look strange on his headstone.
    • Heathcliff tells Nelly to summon the lawyer, Mr. Green. It's time to write his will and decide how to leave his property. He reminds Nelly that he made a deal with the sexton to be buried next to Catherine.
    • Having forced her way into his room, Nelly finds Heathcliff dead, rain pouring down on him from the open window. His eyes are wide open and he has a grimace on his face, his mouth sneering. Nelly cannot close his eyes.
    • They bury him next to Catherine. The country folk in the region all claim that "he walks. There are those who speak to having met him near the church, and on the moor, and even within this house" (34.99). Some have even seen him wandering about with Catherine.
    • Cathy and Hareton return from their walk, and Lockwood leaves. As he walks home, he passes the three headstones—those of Edgar, Catherine, and Heathcliff.