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MonkeyNotes-Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy
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Notes

In this chapter, Hardy reveals the results of Fate at work with the roles of Gabriel and Bathsheba being reversed. Gabriel has lost his sheep and seeks any kind of employment. On the other hand, Bathsheba has become the independent farmer. Fate also puts Gabriel at Bathsheba's farm. He chooses a wagon abandoned by the side of the road as a resting place. When it starts to move, he disembarks and sees a fire in the distance. Being the kind and helpful man that he is, he travels towards the blaze to lend assistance. He has no idea that he has arrived at the farm of Bathsheba. As he labors to put out the fire, she has an opportunity to observe and admire the skills of the capable Gabriel Oak.


The reverses suffered by Gabriel have also made him fatalistic. Like other workers, he too has learned the art of waiting on chance; but Gabriel's strength of character enables him to persevere, believing that fate will sometime help him. Indeed, fate seems to be working in his favor when he arrives at Bathsheba's farm. When he speaks to her, she recognizes his voice and reveals herself to him. He hopes that perhaps she will give him a job on her farm as a shepherd, that fate will work in his favor.

The rustic characters in this chapter act as a chorus. They provide the background humor and make shrewd comments on the main characters and lead to the development of the plot.

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MonkeyNotes-Far From the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy

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