Weather is gothic and very important in "Jane Eyre." Why?

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reidalot eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Bronte uses the weather to heighten the element of the gothic, the dark, a brooding storm about to destroy Jane's happiness. In fact, perhaps, the most important aspect concerning weather occurs before Jane's wedding to Rochester. In Chapter 25, the wind starts blowing, and the wind becomes a metaphor for the changes that will sweep into Jane's life. Jane waits for Rochester and goes to meet him; meanwhile, the rain and wind have begun and she becomes drenched and "feverish." As he places her on his horse she recounts the terrible events that occured in his absence:The wind blew, "wild and high, but with a 'sullen moaning sound' " and as the gale increased, so did Jane's anxiety. The scene is set for the mad wife to enter Jane's room and tear her wedding veil! The weather allows for the eerie and evil mood, and we find out afterwards that their marriage cannot take place. This motif conveys to our modern day world also; just think how many scary movies you've seen with storms, howling wind, and dark, terrible weather! The gothic heightens suspense!