• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Duty In Silas Marner Duty Is Peremptory And Absolute. How Far Would You Say Duty Was Important In George Eliot's 'Silas Marner'

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

Duty In Silas Marner Duty Is Peremptory And Absolute. How Far Would You Say Duty Was Important In George Eliot's 'Silas Marner' In George Eliot's novel 'Silas Marner' there is much evidence to justify the significant importance of duty. Duty has various meanings, but in the instance of George Eliot's novel it is an obligation. An example of this is portrayed by Silas and Eppie. Another example is Godfrey's obligation to Molly, Nancy and Eppie. In the novel the characters can be divided into two groups. There are those who honour duty and those who neglect duty. There are two main outcomes, one positive and one negative. Those who honour duty are rewarded, and those who neglect it are punished. Throughout the entire novel there are characters who neglect duty. The Cass family neglect duty quite a lot, as Godfrey, the Old Squire, and Dunsey all neglect duty. The community at Lantern Yard neglect their duty, especially William Dane. Godfrey neglects his duty towards other characters. He is obliged to Molly but fails to honour his duty, due to dishonesty and hypocrisy and stopped caring for her. Godfrey is unable to live up to his duty towards his second wife Nancy. ...read more.

Middle

William Dane and the Lantern Yard community are also punished as they all disappear. However, there are also those characters in this novel that honour duty, and on the contrary are rewarded. Examples of these characters are the Lammeter family, Winthrop family, Silas himself and Eppie. Nancy and Pricilla are members of the Lammeter family and honour duty. From the Winthrop family Aaron and Dolly honour their duty towards others. The Lammeter family are persistently helping around in the community, and honour their duty. Nancy is a responsible woman and stands by her obligations. She fulfils her duty towards Godfrey, and her sister. She manages to be a dedicated wife and supports her husband, hence is able to fulfil her duty of being a wife. An example of this is when Godfrey tells her about Eppie. She doesn't react but on the contrary cooperates and supports Godfrey as she says, 'Godfrey, if you had told me this six years ago, we could have done some of our duty by the child.' Nancy is also obliged to Pricilla, as they are both sisters and treats her with respect. A prime example is shown during the preparation for the New Year's Eve party, as when the two sisters are getting dressed Nancy says, 'I must dress myself just like you.' ...read more.

Conclusion

He shows great sense of duty and honours it. Eppie is also another character who honours duty, especially to her father and never betrayed him. She changes Silas's life in many ways, and makes him a happy person. When Godfrey Cass comes along to claim her as he is her biological father, she refuses to leave Silas. She honours her duty towards her 'father,' 'I can't leave my father, nor anybody nearer than him... And he's took care of me and loved me from the first, and I'll cleave to him as long as he lives.' This is a great show of duty from Eppie. All these characters that have honoured duty are rewarded in various ways. Silas is rewarded as he retrieves all his gold, and is blessed with a family. Dolly is also rewarded as she gains respect. Eppie and Aaron are both rewarded in a similar way, as their reward is getting married to each other. In the novel 'Silas Marner' there is plenty of evidence to suggest duty is a major theme, even though it isn't very consistent. This is because Nancy is not rewarded and on the contrary can't have any children. Although the novel can be considered to be a 'fable' there are aspects of realism therefore it can be considered as a moral fairy tale. ?? ?? ?? ?? Silas Marner 07/05/2007 1 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE George Eliot section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related GCSE George Eliot essays

  1. Discuss how Silas Marner changes in the novel Silas Marner by George Eliot.

    escaping a life of nothingness, for if he did not have his job then Silas wouldn't have anything at all. That is why, when Eppie was found, he had something else to look after, and his life meant more than it had before when he was just working towards his gold.

  2. Discuss The Importance of Loneliness in the Novel Silas Marner by George Eliot

    Eliot uses Silas' weaving and his medicinal knowledge in Raveloe to further show Silas' eccentric skills. The image used for the weavers in Raveloe is described by Eliot as, "Remnants of a disinherited race." This perfectly describes the role of someone like Silas who is a weaver and who has the knowledge which no one else in Raveloe has.

  1. What does the novel Silas Marner have to say about the relationship between parents ...

    He showed love and care for her as they were both 'lone things', in which he showed her love as a father had never done. This shows that even though Godfrey comes from a higher class, he hasn't got morality as much as Silas has.

  2. Explore George Eliots interest in human nature as shown by her approach and interests ...

    into the stone-pits near Silas's house and died there, but no one is quite sure if he committed suicide. Dunstan Cass's has died due to what he does. He drinks, gambles, steals and lies. He gets his 'just desserts,' for what he does.

  1. What part does gold play in the lives of Godfrey Cass and Silas Marner?

    After the theft of the gold Marner is shocked and desolated, for the gold had been keeping him through the day and he had now no person or object to focus his affections on. When Marner discovers that his gold has been stolen he desperately scrambles about the hole where his gold was hidden.

  2. How Is The Importance Of Doing Your Duty As A Parent Highlighted In The ...

    The neglect of a child, even subtly, in the Romantic's eye, is not a way for a child's purity to be kept intact. Therefore, Godfrey having no good example of how to live and parent, became impure and a bad parent; his impurity is depicted later on when Godfrey severely hurts his child's feelings with no justification.

  1. How does Eliot create sympathy for Marner in chapters 1 & 2? Why is ...

    knows where he came from, he treated Sally Oates from illness with the use of herbs, and he suffers from misunderstood cataleptic fits. All of these things establish Marner as associated with the Dark Arts and the Devil. Eliot describes further the village of Raveloe; and its relation to Marner's already outcast self due to the backwardness of the village.

  2. The Gift of Children in "Silas Marner". What does the novel have to say ...

    children or take responsibility for anything ? as long as you have financial security your family will be perfect in everybody else?s eyes. His wife died a long time ago, and she was the one who was ?the fountain of wholesome love?, whereas Squire Cass seems to lose interest in them very quickly.

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work