Tess of the DUrbervilles
Thomas Hardy
Contributed by Harvey Landy
Chapter 40

The next morning, Angel makes his way to the bank to withdraw money and afterwards, he writes to Tess about his travels to Brazil. He then takes leave of his parents and goes to the Wellbridge farmhouse to pay rent for their stay there after their wedding. He comes across Izzy Huett, who is calling to see how he and Tess are. Angel tells her that Tess is not with her, and then he offers her a ride home. He is reminded that the girls at Talbothays used to have affections for him. He asks Izz if he had asked her to marry him instead of Tess, would she have said yes, and she replies enthusiastically in the affirmative. Energized by her earnestness, he asks if she is willing to go with him to Brazil, though they would be committing an immoral act. Izz does not care and agrees. However, she mentions Tess’ superior love for Angel, which brings him back into reality, and he rescinds his offer to the disappointed Izz. However, what passing love he has for Tess goes away quickly, and his plans for Brazil go on undeterred. If he is right to scorn her at the beginning, time has not change his righteousness.

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