Chapter 18


Narrator: Nelly. 

Twelve years have passed. We are introduced to Cathy’s lifestyle and character. Edgar visits the dying Isabella, and agrees to bring her son back to Thrushcross Grange. Cathy (now aged 13) wanders off, and Nelly finds her at Wuthering Heights with Hareton (now aged 18). Cathy is shocked to hear that the rough Hareton is her cousin.


The chance meeting between Cathy and Hareton helps Heathcliff to develop his plans of revenge. 

A real beauty… yellow curling hair: Cathy has the best features from the two families.

But I know the park and I don’t know those: Cathy wants to explore; she is inquisitive and adventurous, foreshadowing later events.

Pointers: game dogs.

Galloway: small horses from Galloway in Scotland.

Fairishes: fairies.

A mind owning better qualities than his father: early hints which prepare us for Hareton’s role later in the novel. Here, though, he is rough and ignorant.

The Sower by James TissotGood things lost amid a wilderness of weeds, to be sure, whose rankness far over-topped their neglected growth; yet, notwithstanding, evidence of a wealthy soil, that might yield luxuriant crops: Nelly’s view of Hareton would recall for Brontë’s readers Jesusparable of the sower:

A farmer went out to sow his seed. As he was scattering the seed, some fell … among thorns, which grew up and choked the plants. Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop – a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown. (Matthew 13:3-8)

She argues that Hareton’s nature is good, even though his nurture is bad.

Offalld ways: worthless habits.

he allowed that .. [Hareton’s] soul was abandoned to perdition; but then he reflected that Heathcliff must answer for it.: Perdition is a euphemism for hell. Joseph is never happier than when condemning others and anticipating God’s punishment of them. (See Rabbi,Pharisee, teacher of the law.)

Investigating Chapter 18

  • Create a table that compares Cathy with Catherine, her mother.
    • Do you think that Brontë is making the daughter more likeable than the mother? If so, why?
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