Chapter 26


Narrator: Nelly. 

It is late summer. Edgar allows Cathy to visit Linton on the moors and she realises that he is very ill. His moods make the meeting very trying. It is clear that Heathcliff is controlling him. They arrange to meet again on the next Thursday. 


Heathcliff’s plans go forward without him having to do too much. Linton is frightened of him, Cathy’s pity for Linton stops her seeing the full picture, and Nelly advises keeping the details from Edgar in his weak state. Linton is even tormented by Heathcliff in his dreams as we see when he wakes up in terror. Throughout the novel, the boundary between being awake and dreaming is blurred. 

Catherine surveyed him with grief and astonishment: No-one, including the reader, has heard from Wuthering Heights for a while and it is a shock how ill Linton is. 

This is something like your paradise: Cathy reminds Linton of their earlier conversation about what each considered to be ‘heaven’. The fact that he cannot even remember shows that he is not going to live long, even though he insists that he is ‘in tolerable health’.

Bilberries: wild berries which would grow on the moors.

I liked him better than I do in his present curious mood: Cathy prefers Linton when he argues rather than now he is lethargic and doing what he is told by Heathcliff. Throughout the novel, energy and fight are valued over complacent or defeatist attitudes.

a task he was compelled to perform: Cathy has a moment of perception about the reality of Heathcliff’s control over Linton.

Nab: a steep hill.

Ongoings: a way of saying ‘goings on’, a little outdated for the time.

Investigating Chapter 26

  • It is often difficult to sympathise with Linton, but does the reader feel sorry for him in this chapter?
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