44 pages 1 hour read

Henrik Ibsen

Hedda Gabler

Fiction | Play | Adult | Published in 1890

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Act II

Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Act II, Pages 57-63 Summary

It is afternoon. Hedda loads one of her pistols. She calls out a greeting to Brack, who is outside the window. She points her pistol at him and fires, deliberately missing. Brack asks if she is out of her mind.

Brack enters. Hedda has been bored all day: Nobody has called, and Tesman is visiting his aunts. It has been a long time since she and Brack have been alone together. Hedda tells him she missed him while she was on her honeymoon; he feels the same. Though Tesman told Brack that Hedda had a good time on the honeymoon, she was actually very bored. She hints to Brack that she does not love Tesman; he is not particularly surprised. 

Hedda admits that she only married Tesman because he seemed like a model husband and had good financial prospects. Brack has never thought much of marriage for himself, but has always wanted a “a circle of close friends” that he could help and advise (62). He wants to be the trusted friend of a couple and tells Hedda that a “triangular relationship” can be satisfying for everyone involved. Hedda often wished for a third person while she was lonely on her honeymoon.