"Wuthering Heights" centres on the story of Heathcliff. The first
paragraph provides a vivid physical picture of him, as Lockwood
describes how his "black eyes" withdraw suspiciously under his brows
at Lockwood's approach. Nelly's story begins with his introduction
into the Earnshaw family. His vengeful desire to do evil and his love
for Catherine drive the entire plot.
Heathcliff, however, defies being understood and it is difficult for
the reader to resist seeing what they want to see in him. By the name
Heath-cliff it hints to the reader that he is empty like a heath or
dangerous like a cliff. The house which he is brought to also gives
the reader a picture of stormy bad weather. Bronte teases the reader
with two sides to his character. One that his cruelty is only an
expression of his frustrated love for Catherine and thus seen as a
romantic hero. The other, a demon or a devil who is hungry for
recognition, money and power and thus seen as a villain.
A romantic hero in a novel is usually someone who appears dangerous,
daring or cold at first who later emerges to be fiercely devoted and
loving. A villain is usually someone who's violent and ill disposed
towards others, the wicked enemy of the hero in a story or play.
As soon as Heathcliff entered the home after being picked up from the
streets of Liverpool he caused havoc and jealousy. He upset the family
and above all Hindley, as Mr. Earnshaw seemed to have a soft spot for
him. Heathcliff abused from this and used it as an opportunity to
blackmail Hindley. Once, when the father gave them two horses,
Heathcliffs' appeared to have a defect so he made Hindley change with
him or he would have his father of the beating...
... middle of paper ...
...e would be with Catherine again he saw happiness "last night I was at
the threshold of death, alone, I am within sight of my heaven. I have
my eyes on it hardly three feet to sever me!"
Bronte was very successful in combining two completely distinct
characters into one man. As the reader has seen Heathcliff could
either be seen as a romantic hero somewhat like Romeo in "Romeo and
Juliet" who at the end of the play took his own life to be with his
love Juliet as he could not stand being alone in this world without
her or as a tyrant who destroyed the lives and futures of two
families. In my opinion I see Heathcliff as a villain he managed
single handedly to win his way from nothing. Nevertheless happiness is
restored at the end of the novel moral rightness is restored when
Hareton and Cathy get married and the two house holds are left to rest
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