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Chapters 10 and 11

Chapter 10

In Trantridge, the main forms of entertainment are Saturday night excursions to Chaseborough, a market town a few miles away. Though Tess stays away from these activities initially, she is convinced to attend and has a delightful time in the company of the others. She continues to attend, to escape the monotony of her job, and one Saturday, like the others before it, she heads out towards Chaseborough to meet up with her friends.
At first, she cannot find them after she has done her own shopping, but she is told that they are all in attendance at a nearby house. Making her way there in order to walk home with them, she encounters Alec but leaves him after telling him where she is headed. At the house, she finds her friends enjoying themselves immensely, which worries Tess since she fears none of them will be heading home until late. She waits and waits, not feeling in the mood to dance, and soon she sees Alec d'Urberville looking at her. She confides in him her troubles and even though he offers her a ride home, she refuses saying that her friends expect her to walk with them. After a long wait, Tess' company is finally ready for the walk home.
As they walk, one of the girls, Car Darch, accidentally is stained with treacle, making for a humorous sight, causing Tess to laugh. Car, disliking Tess for being Alec's girl of interest, shuns Tess for her laughter, singling her from the crowd. She threatens to fight Tess in retaliation but Tess is too outraged and ashamed to match her.
Just then, Alec comes along, asking what the row is about although he overhears its cause and needs no explanation. He calls for Tess to jump up behind him on his horse, and Tess does so, although under less straining circumstances she most likely would not have. The crowd manages to re-organize itself while Alec and Tess ride off.

Chapter 11

Tess clings to Alec on the horse, too faint and stunned to be truly aware of her situation. Alec asks Tess why she is so standoffish at his romantic overtures to which Tess replies that she does not love him. When she tires, Alec attempts to resituate himself so as to make her more comfortable but that sets her on the defensive. Alec is insulted and demands that she treat him as her lover since he loves her very much. By now, Tess realizes that their ride has been too long, that they should have arrived in Trantridge a while ago. Alec admits to prolonging the ride in order to spend more time with her, and unfortunately, he has gotten them lost in the fog.
Alec sets her down near some trees, telling her that he will attempt to discern their location from a higher elevation if she will rest and wait for his return. With no other options of return, Tess has no choice, but before Alec leaves her, he tells her that he has gotten her father a new horse and her siblings new toys. He asks if learning these things changes her mind about him, but still she cannot admit to loving him.
The fog is quite thick, and Alec has a difficult time trying to guess their location. Nonetheless, he finally realizes where they are and makes his way back to Tess. He feels around with his hands and finding her so beautiful, he rapes her as she sleeps. Tess has no guardian angel to stop his advances, and sadly, Fate carries out what is meant to be.

Browse all book notes

Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Chapters 1, 2, and 3
Chapters 4, 5, and 6
Chapters 7, 8, and 9
Chapters 10 and 11
Chapters 12, 13, 14, and 15
Chapters 16, 17, and 18
Chapters 19, 20, and 21
Chapters 22, 23, and 24
Chapters 25, 26, and 27
Chapters 28, 29, and 30
Chapters 31 and 32
Chapters 33 and 34
Chapters 35, 36, and 37
Chapters 38, 39, and 40
Chapters 41, 42, 43, and 44
Chapters 45, 46, 47, and 48
Chapters 49, 50, 51, and 52
Chapters 53, 54, and 55
Chapters 56, 57, 58, and 59


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