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Part 12 Summary and Analysis

Richard decides to bring Clarissa flowers. Crossing London, he thinks intently about her. His thoughts center on her, and her importance to him. He yearns to come to her in just the right way, speaking words of love and showing that he appreciates her.

Big Ben tolls thrice in Clarissa’s drawing room. She receives a note asking if she might invite Ellie Henderson to her party, and this nettles her. Clarissa had deliberately not invited Ellie, and dislikes feeling pressured to include her. Thoughts about Doris Kilman, who is praying with Elizabeth in another room, also make themselves felt.

Richard surprises her with flowers, but he cannot bring himself to say what he has been thinking. He wavers on the edge of saying what is in his heart. Yet Clarissa understands, for the
flowers and the unexpected visit are themselves enough. Richard mentions that Peter is back, and Clarissa tells him that Peter visited that morning. Richard describes Hugh at lunch and afterwards, while Clarissa still talks about Peter. Their words are at cross purposes, and neither side fully hears the other.

The Dalloways discuss the situation with Elizabeth and Kilman; neither of them is pleased. Richard leaves the room to take a nap. Clarissa...

(The entire section is 417 words.)