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DAISY MILLER STUDY GUIDE
CHAPTER SUMMARIES WITH NOTES
PART II: "ROME"
Winterbourne, horrified to find Daisy at the Colosseum at this hour, comes to a dead stop. He suddenly realizes that he need not respect Daisy anymore; her foolishness has gone too far. He turns to go, but Daisy sees him retreat and exclaims, "He cuts me!" Winterbourne decides that he cannot leave. He approaches the couple and focuses his brutal remarks on the physical danger of Daisy exposing herself to the malarial air. She states that she has been here all evening and finds it beautiful. Winterbourne answers by saying that the fever is not pretty. He then turns to Giovanelli and asks why he has put Daisy in danger. Giovanelli replies that for himself he is not afraid. Winterbourne points out that Daisy is another matter. Giovanelli smiles, and replies that he warned her, but Daisy is never cautious. Daisy dismisses the matter and states that Eugenio has some pills she can take.
Giovanelli leaves to get the carriage, and Daisy follows Winterbourne out, chattering her glee about seeing the Colosseum at night. Before she gets in the carriage, she asks Winterbourne if he really thinks she is engaged. He replies that it makes no difference. Before the couple departs, Winterbourne reminds her to take Eugenio's pills. Daisy's last comment to him, as they drive away, is that she doesn't care if she has Roman fever. Winterbourne never mentions the scene at the Colosseum to anyone, but soon everyone in Rome seems to know, via the hotel porter and cab-driver. Winterbourne convinces himself that he doesn't care, but when Daisy is reported ill, he goes straight to her hotel. Mrs. Miller is not available, for she is now forced into attending to her daughter.
Winterbourne goes back several times, and once speaks to Mrs. Miller, who reveals herself to be a good nurse to Daisy. She explains that Daisy is often delirious, but in a lucid period Daisy has asked her mother to give Winterbourne a message: she was never engaged to the Italian. Mrs. Miller then notes that they have not seen Giovanelli since Daisy fell ill, and she is glad they were not engaged. A week after this visit, Daisy dies while spring is in full bloom. She is buried in a small Protestant cemetery at an angle in the wall of imperial Rome. There are a surprising number of mourners at her funeral. Giovanelli is at the funeral and approaches Winterbourne. He says that Daisy was the most beautiful, amiable, and innocent young woman that he ever saw. Winterbourne questions him about taking her to the Colosseum, and Giovanelli replies that Daisy wanted to go. Then Giovanelli walks away.
Winterbourne leaves Rome, but the following summer meets his aunt at Vevey. He has thought of Daisy during the year and speaks of her with his aunt. Winterbourne feels he was unjust to Daisy, for she needed his esteem. Winterbourne concludes that he has lived "too long in foreign parts." Still he returns to Geneva, where there continue to be contradictory accounts of his motives; perhaps he is there to study or perhaps there is a "very clever foreign lady."