Middlemarch Book Six: The Widow and His Wife Questions and Answers

George Eliot

Book Six: The Widow and His Wife Questions and Answers

Chapters 54-58
Study Questions

1. What motive does Dorothea have in rejecting the suggestion to have a companion once she returns to Lowick Manor?

2. Why isn't Dorothea disturbed by the discussion about remarriage before the end of the year of a widow's mourning?

3. For what reason is Caleb at the site of the fracas?

4. How is it that Fred happens to be nearby when the farm laborers threaten the railway workers?

5. For what does Fred ask Caleb?

6. What are Mrs. Garth's initial objections?

7. What is Fred's purpose in going to the parsonage?

8. In what manner did Rosamond lose her baby?

9. After Ladislaw leaves, what news does Lydgate give his wife?

10. What response does this news elicit from Rosamond?

Answers
1. Dorothea wants no companion because she wants to be alone at Lowick Manor, to make her peace with her deceased husband and to see Ladislaw.

2. Dorothea takes no offense at the discussion of remarriage before the end of a year of mourning because she plans never to marry again.

3. Caleb has been hired by Dorothea and is on his way to meet some railway people to sell some of her land to them.

4. Vincy sent his son riding on this fine day. Fred was just deciding which way to go when he saw Caleb and the fracas.

5. Fred wants Caleb to hire him permanently and teach him the profession so that he may be an honorable man.

6. Mrs. Garth thinks Farebrother is interested in Mary and would be a better choice as her husband. She also believes Fred wrong in not seeing this and using Farebrother as his emissary to assure himself of Mary's love.

7. Fred goes to the parsonage to find Mary and see if she prefers Farebrother.

8. Rosamond lost her baby by going riding with Captain Lydgate, at his request and against her husband's advice, on the untried horse.

9. Once Ladislaw leaves, Lydgate tells his wife they are in debt and must sell some of their things.

10. Rosamond thinks she must ask her father for money. Lydgate has not. Then she thinks moving away to London will be the answer to their financial problems. She is barely acquiescent when he tries to make amends between them with a kiss.