The Death of the Heart Short Essay - Answer Key

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1. Why is Portia staying with Anna and Thomas?

Portia is staying with Anna and Thomas because Thomas's father, Mr. Quayne, wrote a letter, which dictated that upon his death Portia was to live with them for one year.

2. Why is Anna avoiding going home?

Anna is avoiding going home because Portia annoys her, and Anna knows that she will be forced to see her at home.

3. How was Portia conceived?

Mr. Quayne went on frequent trips to London, and met Irene there. He was taken with her, and they began an affair. That autumn, Mr. Quayne received word that Irene was pregnant with Portia.

4. What was Mr. Quayne's life like after he married Irene?

The couple didn't have much money of their own, so they ended up moving around a lot and living in dark and dreary places. Thomas knew that the lifestyle would kill his father, and it eventually did.

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