Wuthering Heights By Emily Brontë Summary and Analysis Chapter 13

Summary

Edgar nurses Catherine for the next two months. During this time, it is revealed that Catherine is pregnant. Edgar longs for a male heir, to prevent Heathcliff and Isabella from inheriting the Grange.

Six weeks after she runs away, Isabella sends a letter to Edgar, announcing her marriage and begging forgiveness. He does not reply. After that, a distraught Isabella sends a letter to Nelly, questioning the humanity of Heathcliff. She tells Nelly that they are living at Wuthering Heights and begs for a visit. The letter goes on to tell of her experiences at Wuthering Heights. Isabella encounters Hareton, Joseph, and Hindley: All are rude and uncaring. She realizes her mistake but also knows that it is too late. She cannot even find a place to sleep that is her own. When Heathcliff returns, he tells her that Catherine is sick, that he blames Edgar, and that he plans on making her suffer in place of Edgar.

Analysis

Nearing death, Catherine knows the next time she goes to the moors will be her last. She does not allow Edgar to comfort either her or himself with a false sense of hope or security. Edgar nurses Catherine tenderly and attentively as best he can, but is he doing this out of love for his wife or the child she is bearing? Without an heir, Isabella would inherit Thrushcross Grange in the event of Edgar's death. Because Isabella is married to Heathcliff, that means Edgar's rival would essentially inherit Edgar's property. Edgar does not want this to happen.

While Edgar is nursing Catherine, readers get a view of Heathcliff from Isabella's perspective. Her letter to Nelly narrates the events that have transpired from the time she eloped. Isabella questions if Heathcliff is really a man and suggests that he may be incarnate evil. She realizes marrying him was a mistake but also realizes she cannot atone for her error. Isabella reveals that Heathcliff blames Edgar for Catherine's suffering, and he will take this out on Isabella, too. Heathcliff may or may not be the devil, but he is making Isabella's life a living hell.

Glossary

frame off be gone.

soliloquy an act or instance of talking aloud to oneself.

thible a smooth stick for stirring broth or porridge.

vouchsafed was gracious enough, or condescended, to give or grant.

adjuration an earnest entreaty or request.

abhorrence loathing, detestation.

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