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Part 1, Chapters 2 and 3

Part One, Chapter Two

Raveloe is quite different from Lantern Yard. It's more prosperous, and in Silas' crisis of faith, such luxury seems obscene. He is in a numbed state -- numb to his old sense of faith, numb to having lost faith. He turns to his work and works late into the night, weaving on his loom almost mechanically. Whereas in Lantern Yard Silas had worked for a dealer and had made less money, Silas finds his work quite profitable in Raveloe. Furthermore, he is accustomed to giving a portion of his earnings to church charity. Now he begins to save it. The purpose of money, for him, had been to give it to others. Now that such purpose is gone, Silas begins to love money in and of itself.

One day, when bringing some wares to a customer, Silas finds the customer's wife -- Sally Oates -- suffering from a heart condition that the town's doctor has been unable to cure. He brings her herbs and cures her. Since Sally is a well-known member of the community, the town gets word of Silas' powers. Silas' cottage is swamped with villagers seeking cures for their various ailments. They begin to regard him as a wise man -- something he does not consider himself to be -- and he turns them away angrily, feeling misunderstood.

Silas begins to work longer hours -- 16 per day -- and spend less and less money. He's accumulating quite a hoard, and he becomes paranoid that someone will try to steal it from him. He begins inventing elaborate systems by which to hide his gold. He makes a hole in the floor of his home, sets a pot of gold inside, and covers it with dirt. He begins shrinking and withering, mimicking an appendage of the loom itself. By day he weaves, and at night he takes out his pot of gold and gazes at it lovingly. But at Christmas of Silas' fifteenth year in Raveloe, a change takes place, we're told, that links Silas with his neighbors in a way that he hasn't been before.

Part One, Chapter Three

Squire Cass is the most important man in Raveloe, we're told. He lives in a red stone house -- referred to as the "Red House" -- opposite the church, and seems to enjoy great plenty. Smells of roasting meats are often detected wafting from his luxurious kitchen. In fact, there's often perceived to be an overabundance of cooking in the Cass kitchen, and this is partly because, we're told, his wife has died and the house overproduces as compensation for her absence. And, in fact, the Cass' are less well-off than they would seem.

The Squire's second son, Dunstan -- called "Dunsey" -- is a rough boy who engages in lots of wild oat-sowing and other unsavory activities, and is known around town as a bad seed. The eldest son, Godfrey, had been a shining example of wealth and good breeding, and carried on a flirtation with Miss Nancy Lammeter. But of late, Godfrey seems to possibly be following in his younger brother's footsteps, and is thus losing the attentions of Nancy. This is unfortunate since Nancy would bring quite a family fortune with her.

One November afternoon in Silas' fifteenth year in Raveloe, Godfrey calls Dunsey to him and demands that Dunsey return money that he'd lent him, since it was rent money from the Cass land, and the Squire has asked Godfrey for it. Dunsey refuses. The two have a heated argument about money, with Dunsey suggesting that Godfrey sell his beloved horse, Wildfire. The two boys drink lots of alcohol as they argue, and Dunstan slams out of the room.

Browse all book notes

Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Part 1, Chapter 1
Part 1, Chapters 2 and 3
Part 1, Chapters 4, 5 and 6
Part 1, Chapters 7,8, and 9
Part 1, Chapters 10, 11, and 12
Part 1, Chapters 13, 14, and 15
Part 2, Chapters 16 and 17
Part 2, Chapters 18, 19, and 20
Part 2, Chapters 20 and 21
Part 2, Conclusion


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