The Mayor of Casterbridge Summary & Study Guide

This Study Guide consists of approximately 63 pages of chapter summaries, quotes, character analysis, themes, and more - everything you need to sharpen your knowledge of The Mayor of Casterbridge.
This section contains 2,449 words
(approx. 7 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Mayor of Casterbridge Study Guide

Chapters 1-2

As the novel opens, Michael Henchard and his wife, Susan, are walking toward a village in Wessex in southwestern England. Susan is carrying their infant daughter, Elizabeth Jane. It is a late summer afternoon in the mid 1800s. Michael, a skilled farm laborer, is looking for work. Hardy describes the man and woman as being distant from each other and in low spirits. Hardy makes clear that Susan is naïve and malleable.

They enter a shop that sells furmity, a grain-based dish, and order their dinner. Michael quickly discerns that the proprietor, whom Hardy calls "the furmity woman," will spike his furmity with rum for an added payment. He gets drunk and tells those around him that he has ruined his chances for success by marrying too young and would sell his wife if he could. Michael refuses to drop this idea, and finally...

(read more)

This section contains 2,449 words
(approx. 7 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Mayor of Casterbridge Study Guide
Copyrights
Novels for Students
The Mayor of Casterbridge from Novels for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.