How has their relationship changed by the end?  

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rdb919 eNotes educator| Certified Educator

At the start of Edith Wharton's "Roman Fever," the characters of Mrs. Slade and Mrs. Ansley are civil with each other but not especially warm. The two women knew each other as young girls and as adults, lived across the street from each other. Though they were not close and they didn't really like each other, they found themselves together in Rome as middle-aged women. Their relationship changes from civil to antagonistic by the end of the story. When each woman reveals her secret, the other becomes angry at the deceit and betrayal. Mrs. Slade is angry that after all of these years, she didn't know that her husband had met and had a child with another woman--Mrs. Ansley. Mrs. Ansley didn't know that Delphin didn't write that letter, Mrs. Slade did. By the end of the story, the women hate each other and will probably not even be able to be civil again.

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Roman Fever

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