In "The Mayor of Casterbridge", why is Michael Henchard the man of character? please answer, it's urgent!!
He also admits the charges which the furmity woman heaves on him (of the wife-selling episode) infront of the whole court and accepts them honestly,and does not try to deny them. Although he knew that the furmity woman had no credibilty in the eyes of Casterbridge people and if he once denied the charges, the topic would never be brought up again. Despite this, Henchard decides to act honestly and nobly accepting his past as it was.
Also, at the time when his belongings are being auctioned to repay his creditors, he does not tamper with the list of his possessions and states everything he owns, and after all his possessions have been auctioned, he presents the little money he has in his pockets and his gold watch, to which the creditors' reply is that he ought to keep it for himself and they dont want it. They also state the fact that Henchard had used his energy to gain his success when he first came to Casterbridge and never had he took to hand any unfair means,and the way he dealt with his creditors was very honest on his part.
Henchard,as a person,is not a wretched man, but fate puts him in such situations where he acts impulsively and his tragic flaw thus proves to be very fatal for him and causes his own downfall. The people he loves the most are lost by him through his irrational and impulsive behaviour. Other thn his tragic flaw, he is an honest man, and is not an astute, and does not gain advantages by unfair means. He relies on his energy for his succes and his business is a fine example of his energy which starts declinig when his energy in the form of impulses and temper diverts to other matters. When his fit of impulse is over, he does realize that what he has done was wrong by all means, like when he sold Susan, wrestled with Farfrae, tried to disgrace Lucetta and lied to Newson and mistreated Elizabeth Jane. At all these incidents, he realizes that he has done a great wrong,yet he cannot undo what he has done. So he lives in his past and his actions consistently haunt him. His tragic flaw is the cause of his downfall, besides that Henchard has great and nobles qualities. He kept his oath for 21 years and resisted the temptation of alcohol. He also did not disclose his and Lucetta's affair to Farfrae although he intended to, because he couldnt bring himself to do it. When he realizes that Newson has returned he quietly lives Casterbridge and he accepts the fact that his suffering is not greater than what he can bear.Similarly, when Susan returns to him, although he wanted to marry Lucetta,he still marries Susan because he believes that his first duty is towards Susan and he wishes to make ammends to her and is guilty over the transaction episode. These incidents all indicate to Henchard's strong and noble qualities of character which are at times subdued by his impulses. He has to suffer alot at the hands of his fate,it almost feels like his fate has been conspiring against him ever since we are first introduced to the character of Henchard.