Summary (Masterplots, Fourth Edition)
Through the help of his Italian friend Professor Pesca, Walter Hartright is engaged as drawing master to the nieces of Frederick Fairlie, of Limmeridge House in Cumberland. On the day before he leaves to take up his new position, he meets a young woman dressed in white wandering about the outskirts of London. Walter discovers that she knows Limmeridge and once went to school there with Laura Fairlie. The young woman leaves him very suddenly, and soon after a coach comes by whose passenger leans from the window to ask a police officer if he saw a girl in white. The police officer did not, and Walter hesitates to intrude. As the coach leaves, he hears the man say the girl escaped from an asylum.
Upon his arrival at Limmeridge, Walter meets the first of his two pupils, Marian Halcombe. Marian is homely but intelligent and charming in manner. Her half sister, Laura, is the beauty of the family and heir of Limmeridge House. The two girls are living under the protection of Laura’s uncle, Fairlie, a selfish and fastidious hypochondriac. Walter falls in love with Laura almost at once. After hearing his story about the mysterious woman in white, Marian searches her mother’s letters and discovers that she must be Anne Catherick, a young woman in whom Mrs. Fairlie took great interest because she so greatly resembled Laura.
After several months, Marian realizes that Walter is deeply in love with Laura. She advises him to leave, as Laura’s father...
(The entire section is 1203 words.)
Want to Read More?
Subscribe now to read the rest of The Woman in White Summary. Plus get complete access to 30,000+ study guides!