What means does Eliot employ to inform us about the various characters in Silas Marner?

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M.P. Ossa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

The style of the narrative in Silas Marneris very similar to that employed by the narrator of a fairy tale. You have a clear beginning, middle, and end of each of the character's stories, and you can see how each has a direct effect in the storyline of the main character. Silas is portrayed like the banished, innocent victim turned cruel and angry over a series of events that are directly connected to special people in his life. His abrasive and selfish ways are realistic and yet semi exaggerated ways to expose his main problem of trusting people and sharing what he had earned.

The way that other characters are portrayed are also realistic but with characteristics almost too fairy-talish such as for example the treason of William Dane, the shunning of Sarah, and all the other things people did to him unfairly. This is how he employs his style to describe characters.