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abhishek krishnan

on 13 April 2014

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Key Details
Character Sketches
The Outset
The Twist
A brief insight into Chapter I

The Setting (Mise en scène)
The novel opens in the English countryside “in the days when the spinning-wheels hummed busily in the farmhouses.”
In this era one would occasionally encounter weavers—typically pale, thin men who looked like “the remnants of a disinherited race”—beside the hearty peasants who worked in the fields.
The Venue : Raveloe
The story is set in the village of Raveloe, which lay in the central plane of Merry England. The village held farms, and was situated far away from any checkpoint , completely cut off from public opinion.
The village is described as "important looking" with a fine old church accompanied by a large church yard, few estates, and plenty of trees.
While Raveloe may not have any great park or Manor House, plenty of residents live in comfortable houses, and can afford "rollicking" fashion , and celebrate festivals heartily.
Main Characters
Silas Mariner : The lead character, an eccentric weaver who is wronged by his closest friend.
William Dane : Silas Mariner's closest friend and a fellow church-mate who accuses Silas of having satanic visions.
Sarah: Silas Mariner's fiancee, a love interest without much significance in chapter I.
Members of General Public and the Church: Men, women and children of fickle minds , easily prone to influence by the thoughts of an individual , and general rumours.
Silas Mariner
Silas Mariner, the weaver is reclusive and his neighbors in Raveloe regard him with a mixture of suspicion and curiosity.He spends all day working at his loom and has never made an effort to get to know any of the villagers.
Silas’s physical appearance is odd: he is bent from his work at the loom, has strange and frightening eyes, and generally looks much older than his years.
Because Silas has knowledge of medicinal herbs and is subject to occasional cataleptic fits, many of his neighbors speculate that he has otherworldly powers.
Before Silas came to Raveloe, he lived in a town to the north, where he was thought of as a young man “of exemplary life and ardent faith.” This town was dominated by a strict religious sect that met in a place called Lantern Yard.
Despite his antisocial behavior, however, Silas is at heart a deeply kind and honest person.
Mentality Of The People
The peasants were superstitious people, often suspicious of both “cleverness” and the world beyond their immediate experience. Thus, the weavers lived isolated lives and often developed the eccentric habits that result from loneliness.
The members of the church easily fell prey to William Dane's words, while stoutly refusing to listen to Silas's reasons . This only shows how fickle minded the members are.
A breakdown of Chapter I
Silas mariner is a weaver who lives in Raveloe , strongly disliked by many people.They figure he has powers other than weaving, because he can cure sickness.
In the 15 years Silas has lived in Raveloe , Silas has kept interaction and communication with residents to a minimum. Even though people dislike him , they tolerate him out necessity for the cloth he weaves.
Silas is an active member of the church , and a staunch believer in God. He and the church are one big family before he falls into a trance during a prayer-meeting. The church members are concerned and curious but Silas refuses to pretend he had a spiritual vision. Silas's only good friend William Dane however thnks Silas's fit could have been a visitation from Satan.
After Silas's trance, William begins to act funny. At the climax of Silas's history , The lead character is accused of stealing money . The allegations are denied , but William finds the money in Silas's house.
As a punishment , Silas is exiled, but before he leaves , he accuses William of taking the money and rejects God. Sarah, Silas's fiancee and William Dane Later get married.
About the author : George Elliot
Novelist George Eliot, a pen name for Mary Ann Evans, was born on November 22, 1819. She was a subeditor for The Westminster Review for three years. In 1851, she met the philosopher George Henry Lewes. Lewes was already married, but she spent the next 20 years of her life with him. She wrote several novels that explored aspects of human psychology, including The Mill on the Floss and Silas Marner. She died in 1880.
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