74 pages 2 hours read

George Eliot

Daniel Deronda

Fiction | Novel | Adult | Published in 1876

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Book 4, Chapters 28-34Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Book 4: “Gwendolen Gets Her Choice”

Book 4, Chapter 28 Summary

Gwendolen’s engagement brings happiness to her family. The Gascoignes celebrate as well, while Gwendolen is delighted that she does not have to be a governess. As she lies awake that night, however, she worries about the idea of marriage, an idea that once repulsed her. The following day, Grandcourt sends an engagement ring to Gwendolen. He also gifts her £500 for expenses. Gwendolen struggles with the reality of her engagement and her guilt regarding Lydia. She wonders whether she might be able to promise some of the vast Mallinger fortune to one of Lydia’s children. However, these worries begin to recede as she imagines the influence she will have as the wife of a powerful man.

As per his fiancée’s request, Grandcourt dismisses Lush. He arranges to keep his old friend on retainer, however, so he will continue to pay Lush even though Lush will go away. The departure of Lush results in Grandcourt slipping into a bout of indolent speculation. He does not believe that Gwendolen is in love with him but the prospect of imposing himself on her and becoming the “master” of her appeals to him. He composes a letter to Sir Hugo, explaining that he plans to marry the recently impoverished Gwendolen.