Mary Elizabeth Braddon

Lady Audley’s Secret

  • 68-page comprehensive study guide
  • Features 42 chapter summaries and 6 sections of expert analysis
  • Written by a literary scholar with a PhD in English and a Master's degree in Philosophy
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Lady Audley’s Secret Volume 3: Chapters 6-10 Summary & Analysis

Chapter 6 Summary: Buried Alive

Lady Audley is packing in preparation for her exile, and her maid notices that she seems to enjoy this task: like her beauty, no one is going to rob her of these possessions.

Once they are in Belgium, Lady Audley asks where Robert is taking her and he replies that it is somewhere where she will have “ample leisure to repent the past” (328). Whenthey reach their destination, Lady Audley realizesit is a madhouse. She is led away to her rooms, which have been sumptuously furnished. Still, they are dark and dreary, and Lady Audley sinks into an armchair in a state of anger and despair.

Robert’s story is that this woman is a relative called Mrs. Taylor who has inherited the seeds of madness from her mother, though she is not to be called mad. He asks that she be treated with compassion but warns that she is not to be allowed outside the premises unattended. The proprietor, Monsieur Val assures Lady Audley that every effort will be made to make her stay agreeable, but she orders him to leave her alone with Robert.

Lady Audley rebukes Robert for his cruelty, but Robert says that he has been merciful. Had he let her go free, she would be a menace. He then tells herthat she should be grateful that the people she will be with have no knowledge of her crimes and that she will have a peaceful life. He urgesher to repent, but she says that she cannot, and she bemoans the factthat she has put herself through so much only to end up in such a place.

Lady Audley remarks that George was standing before her much like Robert is now on the day of his “disappearance.” She continues that Robert would not have needed to excavate the gardens of Audley Court, as George lies at the bottom of the well. She tells him that she knew George would come to find her and she had planned to bribe and cajole him, but George was determined that she disclose her true identity. She resisted his goading…

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