Can you provide me a full character analysis of the protagonist on Silas Marner by George Eliot?

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lmetcalf | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Senior Educator

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Silas Marner is the protagonist of the novel, and he is an excellent example of a dynamic character whose growth serves as the thematic center of the novel.  When we first meet Silas, he is a recluse weaver who has very little positive interactions with the people of the village of Ravaloe.  We find out that he had a very troubling experience with betrayal by a once-close friend, and appears to have shut himself off from society ever since arriving in this village.  We also learn that while he doesn't love people, he loves his money.  He literally frolics with his gold coins, counting them and admiring his accumulation of wealth in the evenings.  When all of his money is stolen -- he is devastated.  Life seems barely worth living, in his opinion.  That is when everything changes for Silas.  At this lowest point in his life, he finds an orphan child on his door-step. 

After he decides to keep the child and raise her as his daughter, his entire world view changes.  He makes friends in the village, and he experiences all consuming love for the child.  She is the light of his existence.  He is completely transformed by his relationship with her and becomes an excellent father who finds the right balance between freedom and discipline for his child.  He raises her to be one the finest young women of the village.  He realizes that success and wealth are not measurde in money, but in spirit, love, and human relationships. 

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