Heathcliff is one of the main characters in the renowned novel, Wuthering Heights, by Emily Bronte. Heathcliff is such a memorable character due to his unique personality and how he approaches and engages conflicts in his life. Whether Heathcliff’s actions spark sympathy or lead to disappointment with his conduct, some characteristics of his personality do seem to stand out throughout the novel. Traits such as his unwillingness to forgive those for events in the past, his selfish nature, or even the deep emotion that emerges through this seemingly dark figure.
In the novel Heathcliff is betrayed by those around him. He is forced to do servant duties by Hindley, who he lives with for many years. As if this is not degrading enough, he begins to lose the love of his life, Catherine, because Heathcliff can no longer provide her with the luxurious life to which she is accustomed. This betrayal probably is what caused him to develop his unforgiving nature, especially since it causes dramatic alterations to his lifestyle, cripples his chances for a successful future, and leaves him emotionally distraught. In chapter 7 of the novel Heathcliff says, “I’m trying to settle how I shall pay Hindley back. I don’t care how long I wait, if I can only do it at last.” This quote shows the grudge he holds against Hindley and his unwillingness to forgive him. Quotes like these can be plucked out from various chapters in the novel, but they all reveal the same thing about Heathcliff. No matter whether it has been a week or years, he seems to hold his grudges and be unable to forgive.
Another trait that Heathcliff exhibits throughout the novel is his selfish side. I believe this side emerges hand in hand with his unforgiving nature. I think when his world is crashing down around him he decides that he is the only person he can trust and he developes a fear of building a bond that can be severed leading him to be selfish. This selfishness is also...
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