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Word Count: 1,011
The entire opening chapter of The Return of the Native is devoted to a lengthy description of Egdon Heath the setting of the novel The heath must be significant in terms of the themes and the continue progress of the novel The author of the novel Thomas Hardy made the heath so significant to the point that it can be look upon as a character like any other in the novel The heaths constant correlation with the plot and its personality even transformed it into the major antagonist of the story In the opening chapter the heath is introduced just as how a major character of most novels would be introduced with detail In fact the way Hardy devoted the entire first chapter just to describe it gives it the level of importance that is over any other characters in the book This seems to suggest that the heath is like the ruler of the story it is the King and it is more powerful than any person is The heath demonstrates the idea that fate is more powerful than the desires of individuals This theme can be seems throughout the novel The biggest effect of this theme is on Eustacia The fact that Clym delayed sending his letter to Eustacia coupled with the fact that Captain Vye unwittingly kept the letter from Eustacia until it was too late suggests that perhaps destiny is against her It is under the downpour of the rain on the rugged heath where Eustacia laments her fate Eustacias own remark how destiny is against me 354 and I have been injured and blighted and crushed by things beyond my control 354 affirm the existence of such a force the power of fate On Egdon Heath night and darkness comes before its astronomical hour 11 This presents the idea of Egdon Heaths unchangeable place in time This early arrival of darkness gives Egdon Heath a sense of gloom
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