The Downfall of Tess in Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Improved Essays
The Downfall of Tess in Thomas Hardy's Tess of the D'Urbervilles

Tess of the D'Urbervilles is considered to be a tragedy due to the catastrophic downfall of the protaganist Tess. From the early days in her life, her father John had begun to destroy her, which then led to
Alex D'Urbervill and eventually finished with Angel Clare. Each dominant male figure in her life cocntributed to her tragic downfall which the reader encounters at the end of the novel. It is unfortunate how one woman can be ruined by the three most important and dominant people in her life.

Tess's downfall began with her experiences with her father. She grew up with a father who drank excessively and did not give her any type of guidance or support. His
…show more content…
When the time comes for
Tess to return to Marlott, he begs her to stay and gives her mahy flowers. This, to some extent, foreshadows how Alec will not give up on having her for himself.

Tess's first real horrific life experience comes about on the night when Alec and Tess are returning from Chaseborough. Upon realizing that she is vulonerable and weak he takes the opportunity to seduce her. The consequence of this is her unexpected pregnancy, which results in the birth of Sorrow. She is so depressed and upset she does not tell Alec about the outcome of that night and leaves Tantridge.
Unfortunately Tess's experience even with Alec results in a negative outcome. Nex she begins her journey to Dairyman Crick's farm, after receiving aletter asking her to go there. Once more she sets her family as her priority and not herself, she proves to be selfless. When arriving at the farm, she is introduced to a fellow worker, Angel Clare. They being to be close friends and finally Angel confesses his love for her and asks her to marry him, but she refuses.

Tess had promised herself that she would never again trust a man, not even her new love Angel after what Alec had done to her. As the months go byk, she finally gives in to Angel and marries him. When Tess reveals her past to him following the wedding, Angel

Related Documents

  • Improved Essays

    Collins because of the pressure of wanting stability and, although she is happy with her house and other aspects of her life, she has no interest in her husband. Mr. Collins’ interest in Charlotte was entirely imagined, as he proposed to her very shortly after being rejected by Lizzie. Charlotte “accepted him solely from the pure and disinterested desire of an establishment” (Chapter 22). Neither of them cared at all about the other’s personality or values, just about getting married. When Lizzie visited Charlotte, she “took her sister and friend over the house, extremely well pleased, probably, to have the opportunity of showing it without her husband’s help” (Chapter 28).…

    • 1028 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Before they were married, Angel’s parents encouraged Angel to marry the pure girl next door, Mercy Chant. When Angel’s parents learned about Tess they compared her to Mercy and were a little hesitant on whether or not to give him their blessing. On the other hand, in today’s society, marriage has a whole different meaning than the time Tess of the d’Urbervilles was…

    • 799 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    She meets Alec who still loves her and keeps oppressing her to marry him saying that Angel is never going to come back. She lives with Alec for a while before Angel comes back expressing…

    • 993 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Oedipus unknowingly married his mother Jocasta and faced many obstacles in his life because of his wrong deeds. Jocasta 's life becomes filled with darkness when she hears her husband is dead. This made Jocasta commit suicide to end all her grief and sorrow as she is also blinded of the actions around her. Oedipus 's flaws have caused him to lose both his parents King Laius and Jocasta. Oedipus is now left alone with the death of his mother.…

    • 1950 Words
    • 8 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Her two brothers have perished as well after a large battle over the thrown. All she has left is her uncle and her dear sister Ismene. When Antigone breaks Creons law and buries her traitorous brother she is sentenced to be locked away forever. All of this brought a curse on Creon and his family which led to his tragic end. Aristotle defines tragedy as "an imitation of an action…

    • 751 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Many of the phases of Janie’s life trusted on her goal of searching and reaching the horizon she felt her grandmother took away from her. While married to Joe Starks, her second husband, the appearance of the horizon appears while watching the sunset on the porch. The image of the horizon describes the fact that Janie is not satisfied with the marriage she has with Joe Starks, due to the fact Joe was controlling, mean, jealous, and abusive with his words towards Janie. In the words of Joe “Thank yuh fuh yo’ compliments, but mah wife don’t know nothing’ bout no speech-makin’. Ah never married her for nothing lak dat.…

    • 1089 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Superior Essays

    Janie’s dream starts off to be a life with true love, but is change when she marries into a relationship where she is not treated as an equal. With Janie’s first husband she was beaten and verbally abused. One day when she was doing the laundry she meet a man named Joe Starks, which she later ran off with to marry. She was certain that her and Joe’s relationship was based on true love, but as she got to known his true personality she no longer wanted to repeat what happen in her first marriage. The narrator describes Janie’s feelings; “ Everyday after that they managed to meet in the scrub oaks across the road and talk about when he would be a big ruler of things with her reaping benefits.…

    • 1206 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Superior Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Although Emma accepts this she does not leave him alone or attempt to find somebody else to spend her life with until she finds out that, although he was not supposed to, Augustus got married to another woman. Once she realised that she had no chance of being with him Emma married the man who had been pursuing her Mr. Montague. Once Augustus passed away Emma takes in his son whom she raises as her own, this is to convey that after all of those years Emma still refused to get over the love that she had for a man who she never knew. Women are often portrayed as flighty and daydreamers in novels, whether it be about men or not. This can be seen in Northanger Abbey by Jane Austen which was written in the late 18th century.…

    • 1723 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    Remy had never noticed there was a distance between her and her mother until her fight with Don. It established the fact that even though her marriages have never been successful, Remy’s mother chooses her husbands over her own daughter. Her mother’s five, unsuccessful marriages taught Remy that love does not exist and she has commitment issues because she was never shown a lasting relationship. This belief that love does not exist or last causes Remy to have a negative and cynical belief in relationships. This is why her boyfriends have “expiration dates”; Remy goes into a relationship knowing she will give “The Speech” to slow down the relationship, then sleeps with them, and then reasons with herself that it’s time to end it (135).…

    • 799 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Improved Essays
  • Improved Essays

    She is happy there, making friends with the other milkmaids and falling in love with Angel Clare, whom she agrees to marry after many months. Due to her morals and Angel’s pure ways, she feels obligated to tell him about her previous problems with Alec and the resulting events. She leaves him a note, which slips under his carpet and is never read. Following their wedding, Angel confides that he had an affair with a woman in London, and Tess explains her history with Alec. Although Tess forgives him, Angel finds himself unable to forgive her and leaves to try and establish a farm in Brazil.…

    • 704 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Improved Essays