A Damnosa Hereditas Essay
A Damnosa Hereditas
A vehicle of some kind was softly creeping along the lane from Casterbridge to Little Weatherbury Farm. The dirt and muddy tones that contrasted with the formal black of the small carriage would alert anyone who knew of the adverse conditions of the roads in the south would know that this vehicle had been around Norcombe. On this cold, cloudless night the not so humble abode of the Everdene’s appeared like one of the gatehouses of Camelot, the glassy shine of the stars reflecting on the upper windows and into the eyes of the new mistress.
To her it was destiny for her to live in the manor as Nelson thought it his destiny to succeed. And as with the great sailor there was great pride in the woman. Although it was now late at night Miss Everdene insisted that her guide rouse the whole house in honour of her arrival. When all her workforce had assembled itself outside of the house she wav most ashamed that she was only the mistress of such a piteously small number of souls and even then she was not even fully in charge as her uncle had left his bailiff in command of the parochial business of the farm.
Despite this Bathsheba was pleased to finally have people beneath her, but little did she know that she had been given a “Damnosa Hereditas” (Ruinous Inheritance). The bailiff, whose face was like a circular disc, and whose eyes were like those of a serpent. After she permitted her flock to return to bed, she herself turned in. It was late morning, long after the lark had finished its song and long after her workers had begun their work that Bathsheba did see fit that she should rise. She rode around her farm on a ‘high horse’ in more than one way.
At the point where her ‘Hereditas’ bordered the other Weatherbury Farm, she looked upon it enviously wishing to covet it. At this point a farmer of dignified and Spartan stature was also looking over his farm and as he passed Miss Everdene said “Good Morning”, politely and expectantly as if she were all to used to getting approached by gentry. However instead of a friendly and interested response the gentleman replied, ” I beg to inform you madam that it is long past meridian, and I would very much appreciate it if you would not distract my workers by parading yourself in front of them.
Good day to you. ” Bthsheba returned home in such a mood as would have befit the Emperor’s rage after being purged from the Realm of the Cossacks. At the birth of the next week however at Sunday Service Bathsheba’s spirits had risen from the ashes like a Phoenix from the ashes, as she was the centre of attention, like a jerry-go-nimble show or something of the sort. Nevertheless Boldwood ignored her most religiously.
While these events were taking place there was a young person in the employment of Bathsheba that had other things to worry her, her pregnancy and her thoughts of her husbands whereabouts. Commentary As you can see I have tried to maintain Hardy’s style of writing in my chapter. I have tried to put his poetic and descriptive nature in my chapter, for example comparing the look of the Everdene house in the starry night to one of the gatehouses of Camelot because the light of the stars reflected off of the windows and the lines of the house.
This description shows Hardy’s love of architecture. This description goes on to how the reflection of the stars could be seen as a glisten or a spark in Bathsheba’s eyes. I have also compared Bathsheba to Horatio Lord Nelson the hero of the British public for such along period of Hardy’s life because he had an enormous ‘big-headedness’ that Bathsheba arriving at her new home would have. In an “England expects every man will do his duty”; form (Nelson’s signal at Trafalgur).
Bathsheba turned out her workers. As we know how vain she was I have described her as being disappointed about how little people she commanded because from the first meeting with her at the toll gate we could see her pride and she takes it that the world does not think her as important as she believes herself to be, giving only this small workforce to her.
I have described Pennyways as a ‘snake’ because we know from reading the book that he has been stealing grain and is a co-conspirator with Troy at the end. I have put in the part with Boldwood as to give another reason for Bathsheba sending the valentines card in the future.
The uncivil way in which he snubbed her would have warranted revenge from the proud woman. I have reinforced this by adding in the part about Boldwood ignoring Bathsheba at Sunday Service, which Liddy reminds her mistress about before sending the valentines card. I used the quote “Damnosa Hereditas” because it means ruinous inheritance and from Bathsheba’s first steps in the land she sets off a disastrous sequence of events that will leave a scar on her and other good, innocent people. I have put in the part about the young woman because it gives us the idea about Fanny Robbins imminent departure and troubles.
University/College: University of California
Type of paper: Thesis/Dissertation Chapter
Date: 30 September 2017