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How does the character of Silas Marner change and develop throughout the course of the novel?

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Introduction

"How does the character of Silas Marner change and develop throughout the course of the novel?" In Lantern Yard Silas Marner was a valued man who showed a great devotion towards God and kindness towards his neighbours. Because of unfair accusations and betrayal by both God and man he lost all faith in God and in humanity, thus putting a halt to the philanthropy that he previously practised. Silas moved to a far off country named Raveloe where he lived a spider-like existence weaving in his loom, isolated from the community. It was in Raveloe that Silas first entered his selfish misanthropist way of life. Silas' devotion to God became replaced by devotion towards an inanimate object - his gold. Silas experienced a great shock when his dearest companion (his gold) was stolen. The feelings of devotion towards the hard objects disappeared when a young girl, Eppie entered his life. Eppie was the reason for Silas' redemption and his chance of becoming reintegrated into society. His selfishness turned into selflessness and he showed sociability rather than dedication to gold. This discovery of love and loves resurrection was the ultimate development and growth within him. A respected and credulous man, Silas Marner lived an altruistic lifestyle surrounded by the security of the "little hidden world" of Lantern Yard where he lived a purposeful existence. Within this narrow congregation Silas was a good-natured, reverential and above all a "highly thought of" member of the minute community. Marner was known to be a man of "exemplary life and ardent faith" he was an integral and important member of the community, devoted and pious, he possessed an unshakable faith in both God and in humanity. Due to his occupation as a weaver Silas did not earn an immense sum of money, but from what he did earn he donated most of his income to objects of charity or piety, this amongst other things proved Silas' benevolence towards mankind. ...read more.

Middle

He believed that like the money, the earthenware pot was a companion of his. This happening proved to the reader that not all of the affection within Silas had been killed off (due to the betrayal by humanity and God). It also showed that Silas still had love within him, but instead of giving his love to humans, he gave it to his inanimate material belongings. When Silas' precious gold was stolen from him he knew no reason to continue living. For the gold had been Silas' only companion, the sole purpose for him going through the day was that he would have an opportunity to feel and look at his gold in the evening. Now that the gold had been taken from him, he knew not of what he could do to make it return. This was the first occasion that he was somewhat forced to interact with the community (for the curing of Sally Oates had been done out of choice not force). Silas' first instinct was to sit at his loom and weave; this was his "strongest assurance of reality". When Silas did not know what else to do to find his gold, his decision to tell the people of Raveloe let them know that Silas was not the callous man they had pictured him to be. The community was reassured when they realised that "folks as had the devil to back 'em were not likely to be so mushed" The fact that he was completely distraught at the thought of his gold never returning to him caused people to sympathise with him and believe he was neither inhumane nor possessed by the devil. Unconsciously there was a growth occurring within Marner; due to the loss of his gold he had made contact with people to whom he had never before spoken and had given them reason to believe he was not the unfeeling man they had thought him to be. ...read more.

Conclusion

had resulted in Marner becoming experienced with the good and bad things about life. These experiences in his life ultimately made Silas Marner a stronger person, both physically and mentally. This also resulted in a growth appearing within Marner psychologically. Silas' confiding in Dolly showed that he was at long last ready to talk about his past life. Which established that he had finally come to terms with the betrayal that led to the tragic life he had previously led (prior to Eppie's arrival) simply because to get beyond a catastrophe such as that of Silas Marner you must confront it, which was exactly what Marner attempted to do. At long last Silas changed his outlook on life and finally decided "there's good in this world". As of the time that Eppie was mature enough to comprehend, Silas had enlightened her with all knowledge that he had about her past. Because of this, a genuine mutual respect developed between father and daughter. A strong trust urbanized between the two, and it was as a result of this reciprocal trust that Marner once again trusted those around him. Eppie's love taught Marner how to love the world and humanity again. As Marner taught Eppie the ways of the world, Eppie unintentionally taught Marner how to be whole again. As Eppie grew older, Silas eventually became utterly selfless. He stopped admiring material, inanimate objects and instead focused his life around his beloved daughter. His love towards Eppie was stronger than his infatuation with gold. Eppie was the reason for the ultimate growth, both mentally and physically within Silas. Because of Eppie, Silas became stable minded, his once bad eyesight improved magnificently, and his malice, miserly ways changed completely to form a new and improved man. The redemptive power of love, shown to Marner through Eppie saved him from being an embittered man until his dying day. THANK YOU SO MUCH FOR YOUR HELP AND TIME, JUST WANT TO SAY THAT YOU ARE DOING A GREAT JOB, AND THIS IS BY FAR ONE OF THE BEST HOMEWORK HELP SITES AVAILABLE! LUV YA! Amrah Ahmed 1 ...read more.

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