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Describe Mr. Lockwood's strange dream at Wuthering Heights.

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u2009 | Student, Grade 9 | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 12, 2009 at 4:18 PM via web

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Describe Mr. Lockwood's strange dream at Wuthering Heights.

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lit24 | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted August 12, 2009 at 11:24 PM (Answer #1)

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In Ch.3 because of the storm the primary narrator is forced to spend the night at "Wuthering Heights." Zillah the housekeeper ensures that he is lodged in a room upstairs, while leading him up to this room

"she recommended that I [lockwood] should hide the candle, and not make a noise; for her master had an odd notion about the chamber she would put me in, and never let anybody lodge there willingly.

I asked the reason.

She did not know, she answered; she had only lived there a year or two; and they had so many queer goings on."

This sets the tone and the gothic atmosphere of this chapter. Lockwood begins to browse through the diaries of the elder Catherine which she had written when she was a small girl. Weary as he is he soon dozes off only to be woken up by the branch of a tree scratching a window pane and disturbing his sleep. He wakes up and opens the window to get rid of the offending branch only to grab the hand of a small child!

"I must stop it, nevertheless!" I muttered, knocking my knuckles through the glass, and stretching an arm out to seize the importunate branch; instead of which, my fingers closed on the fingers of a little, ice-cold hand! The intense horror of nightmare came over me. I tried to draw back my arm, but the hand clung to it, and a most melancholy voice sobbed, "Let me in -- let me in!" "Who are you?" I asked, struggling, meanwhile, to disengage myself. "Catherine Linton," it replied shiveringly. (Why did I think of Linton? I had read Earnshaw twenty times for Linton.) "I'm come home. I'd lost my way on the moor." As it spoke, I discerned, obscurely, a child's face looking through the window. Terror made me cruel; and finding it useless to attempt shaking the creature off, I pulled its wrist on to the broken pane, and rubbed it to and fro till the blood ran down and soaked the bedclothes. Still it wailed, "Let me in!" and maintained its tenacious gripe, almost maddening me with fear. "How can I?" I said at length. "Let me go, if you want me to let you in!" The fingers relaxed; I snatched mine through the hole, hurriedly piled the books up in a pyramid against it, and stopped my ears to exclude the lamentable prayer. I seemed to keep them closed above a quarter of an hour;

yet the instant I listened again, there was the doleful cry moaning on! "Begone!" I shouted; "I'll never let you in -- not if you beg for twenty years." "It is twenty years," mourned the voice -- "twenty years. I've been a waif for twenty years!" Thereat began a feeble scratching outside, and the pile of books moved as if thrust forward. I tried to jump up, but could not stir a limb, and so yelled aloud in a frenzy of fright."

The meaning of Lockwood's dream becomes clear when Heathcliff arrives on the scene and from his frenzied manner we realise that it was the ghost of the elder Catherine which was trying to come back to 'Wuthering Heights' where it had spent its early childhood.

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ehnado | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 25, 2010 at 12:39 PM (Answer #2)

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what torments lockwood during his first dream?

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