Tess of the DUrbervilles
Thomas Hardy
Contributed by Harvey Landy
Chapter 27
Summary

As Angel makes his way back, he is so in tune with the surroundings that he recognizes all the cows by name even from some distance away. He encounters Tess, who is surprised to see him, and tells her that he has come back so soon from home just to see her. Her heart beats excitedly, and together, though in a daze, they set about to the daily tasks of skimming the milk. When they are alone, he finally asks her if she will marry him, but with the painful vow returning to her, she refuses. Angel is shocked, so sure that she loves him, but she cannot marry him, owing to her vow that she die unmarried. She tells him that she only wishes to love him.

Angel persists, saying that he has already spoken to his parents and he tells her the details of his visit. He even tells her about the young squire d’Urberville whom his father is trying to save, but the story only hinders his process of receiving an affirmative response to his question. Reminded by the tale of her past sorrows and deception by Alec, Tess is only further convinced that she cannot marry Angel.

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