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CHAPTER 8: Summary
Dunstan had not returned, but Godfrey Cass was so busy thinking about the beauty of Nancy Lammeter whom he had met at Mrs Osgood’s party that he did not give much thought to the fact that his brother was missing. He assumed that his brother had spent the night somewhere else.
He felt trapped as he could not free himself from his secret wife. The next day Bryce, the man with whom Dunstan made the deal about Wildfire, visited Godfrey and told him about the deal for the horse, the horse’s death, and the disappearance of Dunstan. This outraged Godfrey, who swore revenge. Godfrey was in a difficult situation since now he had no money to pay off his debts. He considered lying to the Squire about what happened. He later realised that the act would simply get them both into more trouble with their father, so he decided just to speak the truth to the Squire the next day.
On the other hand, the whole of Raveloe was dwelling on the story of Silas Marner’s robbery.
A close examination of the area near Marner’s cottage produced a tinderbox found in the mud. Many of the villagers were convinced that the tinderbox was connected with the robbery, while others maintain that Marner had made up the story. Some speculated that Silas was partly crazy. Mr Macey was convinced of supernatural intervention in Silas Marner’s robbery.
Dunstan’s absence indicated that something above and beyond the robbery of Marner may have occurred. The village united around the story of Marner’s loss. In a village where everyone knew one another, the idea of a thief was shocking and the villagers concluded that it must be an outsider and one who owned the found tinderbox. The villagers, like Dunstan, were not afraid to build ideas and actions upon poorly grounded assumptions.
At the Rainbow, MrCrackenthorp (the rector), Squire Cass, and several others carried out an investigation of the tinderbox. The landlord Mr Snell, now appointed deputy constable, recalled that a peddler who stopped in for a drink a month earlier carried a tinderbox to light his pipe. Upon further reflection, Mr Snell recalled his foreignness and a certain look in his eye, which he had disliked.
The peddler who was supposedly connected with the robbery underlined the Raveloe community’s fear of the outsider. The most incriminating detail that Mr Snell could recall about the peddler was his “foreignness.” For the villagers, to be foreign was nearly the same as being a criminal.
Ql. Why did Godfrey resolve to come clean with his father when Dunstan did not return?
Ans. Godfrey was measuring what would be the worse consequence. Godfrey was in a difficult situation since now he had no money to pay off his debts. He considered lying to the Squire about what happened. He later realised that the act would simply get them both into more trouble with their father, so he decided just to speak the truth to the Squire the next day.
He knew confessing would entail facing the rage and after actions that his father was most famous for. He even contemplated that it would be easier to just go with the flow and wish for the best. If he was disinherited, he would have to suffer the shame of living under the shadow of who he once was or enlist in the military to earn at least half of his reputation.
It was as if he was living for the moment in the process of determining whether to confess or not. He would cherish the opportunity of seeing Nancy and just wait and see what came up. He was quite nervous but understood that all of this had been his own wrongdoing. He finally decided to come clean with his father.
Q2. What do the villagers find near the place of robbery? What do they conclude? What do they think happened?
Ans. The villagers find a “tinder-box” which they think is somehow related to the theft of Silas’ gold. They believe that the robber who had taken Silas’s gold must have left the box behind. Mr Snell recalls that a peddler had come to the village a month before and had such a tinderbox. The people try to consider the foreign peddler as a possible thief.
The peddler who was supposedly connected with the robbery underlined the Raveloe community’s fear of the outsider. The most prominent and damning observation was that he was a foreigner.