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What does Catherine think of Isabella in Wuthering Heights?

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lilkatie07 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted August 16, 2010 at 8:22 PM via web

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What does Catherine think of Isabella in Wuthering Heights?

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lit24 | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted August 31, 2010 at 11:49 PM (Answer #1)

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In Ch. 7 Catherine is forced to spend five weeks at Thrushcross Grange, the home of the Lintons. When she returns to her home at Wuthering Heights, she is a much altered person - she has been transformed completely into a fine and elegant lady.

But nowhere is it mentioned that this is because of Isabella Linton.

In Ch.10 Catherine, now Mrs. Catherine Edgar Linton, clashes with her sister in law Isabella Linton, because Isabella who is now,

a charming young lady of eighteen; infantile in manners, though possessed of keen wit, keen feelings, and a keen temper, too, if irritated.

has become infatuated with Heathcliff!

Soon, Catherine and Isabella begin to quarrel over Heathcliff when Isabella remarks,

'I love him more than ever you loved Edgar, and he might love me, if you would let him!'

Isabella wrongly believes that Catherine is in love with Heathcliff and that she is preventing Heathcliff from loving her. No amount of reasoning on the part of Catherine is able to dissuade her sister in law Isabella from falling in love with Heathcliff.

In the same chapter, when Mr.Edgar is away on business and Catherine and Isabella are in the library Heathcliff arrives. Catherine at once begins to mock at both Isabella and Heathcliff and she remarks sarcastically,

My poor little sister-in-law is breaking her heart by mere contemplation of your physical and moral beauty. It lies in your own power to be Edgar's brother!

Catherine's attitude towards her sister  in law is one of pity. Having been acquainted with Heathcliff from the time when both of them were children, she knows fully well what sort of a person he really is and so she advises Isabella against  marrying Heathcliff. But there is no stopping Isabella who elopes with Heathcliff only to find out, as she writes to Nelly Dean in Ch. 13:

Is Mr. Heathcliff a man? If so, is he mad? And if not, is he a devil?

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mkcapen1 | Middle School Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted August 17, 2010 at 8:31 AM (Answer #2)

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In the book Wuthering Heights Catherine was raised on the land of Wuthering Heights only to go into town for church and, before they were taught at home, to school.  Catherine had been kept away from other people due to the place she lived and the distance.  Her father was raising her with Nelly's help, and he was often gone.  Her only playmate was Heathcliff.

At first Catherine and Heathcliff made fun of the Earnshaws, but after Catherine went to live with them she began to like Isabella like a sister.  Isabella shared with her and showed her how to be a lady.  Catherine later began to feel sorry for and at the same time hate Isabella when Heathcliff started to woo her.  Catherine loved Heathcliff and did not want someone else with him.  She also saw right through the danger in him.

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musclin | Student, Grade 9 | eNoter

Posted October 16, 2010 at 8:10 PM (Answer #3)

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she fond of her but when she tells her she likes heathcliff ther friendship ends because for me catherine is a bit selfish i mean she has Edgard and she broke heathcliff's heart but she want heatchliff to wait for her forever!

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