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Silas Marner, Essential Revision Notes

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Table of Contents

Context 5

Life of George Eliot (1819-1880) 5

George Eliot’s Writings 5

The Industrial Revolution 5

The Victorian novel 6

Summary 7

Chapter Outline 7

Chapter 1 7

Chapters 2-10 8

Chapter 11 8

Chapters 12-13 9

Chapters 14-15 9

Chapters 16-21 9

Conclusion 10

Characters 11

Silas Marner 11

Eppie 11

Godfrey Cass 11

Nancy Lammeter 12

Language 13

Important quotations explained 13

1. 13

2. 13

3. 14

4. 14

5. 15

Themes, Motifs, and Symbols 16

Themes 16

A fairy tale 16

Magic 16

Coincidence 16

Mystery 16

Money 16

The community 17

The significance of a child 17

The children 18

Religion and duty 18

The omniscient narrator 19

Motifs 19

The Natural World 19

Domesticity 19

Class 19

Symbols 20

Silas’s Loom 20

Lantern Yard 20

The Hearth 20

Sample Answers 21

Explore how Eliot contrasts the progress of Godfrey and Silas in the novel. Remember to support your ideas with close reference to the novel. 21

The importance of family in Silas Marner 23

Context

Life of George Eliot (1819-1880)

George Eliot was the pen-name of Mary Ann Evans. Her mother died in 1836 and from then until his death in 1849, she was her father’s housekeeper. After that, she moved to London.

Although she was influenced by the Evangelical preacher, Rev. John Edmund Jones, when younger, she moved in intellectual circles in London that sought to question conventional beliefs.

However, it was not just in this or in taking a male pen-name that she was unconventional. In 1854 she started to live with G H. Lewes. They remained unmarried because he had an estranged wife. After his death, she married John W. Cross, who was an old friend, in 1880.

George Eliot’s Writings

George Eliot is best known for her novels but published a variety of work, including articles, poetry and satirical writing.

Her major novels:

  • Adam Bede 1859
  • The Mill on the Floss 1860
  • Silas Marner 1861
  • Romola 1863
  • Felix Holt: The Radical 1867
  • Middlemarch 1872
  • Daniel Deronda 1876

The Industrial Revolution

The Industrial ...

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