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Far from the Madding Crowd

Far from the Maddning Crowdis a story of three men with nothing in common except the conquest for the same woman. It takes place in the 19th century in a country town of West England, where the sound of the wind along with the singing of the birds is a melodic rhythm, the field is green, and the flocks of sheep graze peacefully like cotton balls. On top of the hill lived Bathsheba, a beautiful and independent young woman. After the death of her father, she confronted with the role of managing the farm she inherited from her father.

Batsheba faces her duties and responsibilities with control and authority. This is in contrast to her personal life; she is confused because she does not know which one of her three pretenders she wants as a prospective husband.

One of Batsheba’s pretenders was Gabriel Oak, a shepherd of flocks and a man who was loved and respected by everyone. Gabriel was a kind man whose eyes implied tenderness. He wanted Batsheba’s love, but she told him that she was independence and needed a husband that would tame her. He lost all of his wealth when his flock of sheep had strayed off a cliff and had to become Batsheba’s Foreman.

Bathsheba arouses an unrestrained passion in Mr. Boldwood, a middle-aged, wealthy man who had never bothered with the feelings of a woman, until, he receives an anonymous letter where he was teased with a marriage proposal. When he found out that Batsheba had written the letter, he proposed to her. Batsheba felt guilty for what she had done to Mr. Boldwood and was willing to marry him even without feeling any love for him.

Batsheba meets the third pretender; Sgt. Troy, a good looking, daring, young man, depressed by being left at the altar by the woman he loves. Bathsheba felt jealousy and distraction toward him, which she thought was love. He desires only Bathsheba’s wealth.

Bathsheba and Sgt. Troy were married even though Mr. Boldwood offered Sgt. Troy a fortune in exchange for not marrying Batsheba. Gabriel and Mr. Boldwood were left broken hearted; Mr. Boldwood sworn vengeance to Sgt. Troy. As soon as they were married, Sgt. Troy started ill treating Bathsheba, and he does not help her with the farm duties; instead, he demands money to support his gambling. But there was Gabriel Oak always by her side and working arduously on the maintenance of the farm.

One day while riding in a carriage with his wife, Sgt. Troy observed a paled, poorly dressed woman whom he recognized as being his true love, Fanny. Sgt. Troy stopped the carriage and told Batsheba to wait in the carriage while he helped someone who needed assistance. Sgt. Troy failed to notice that Fanny was close to giving birth. He approached her and was very happy to see her. He helped her with what money he had and arranged to meet her, but the meeting never took place; she died giving birth. Sgt. Troy felt deep sadness and guilt for the death of his loved one and child because he never forgave her for being late on their wedding day. Sgt. Troy wanted to go far away to get over his sorrow, so he made believe that he drowned in the ocean.

Since no body was found, Sgt. Troy was presumed a living spouse, so Batsheba would have to wait six years before she could remarry. Mr. Boldwood was more than willing to wait. Batsheba with bruises on her heart, was not yet interested in any new romance, but the insistences of Mr. Boldwood made her promise to be his wife in six years. At the celebration on Mr. Boldwood’s farm in honor for the acceptance of marriage by Batsheba, the presumed dead Sgt. Troy appeared and tried to take Batsheba away against her will, he died instantly after being shot by Mr. Boldwood.

Mr. Boldwood was to be hanged, but evidence furnished by Gabriel Oak demonstrated that Mr. Boldwood was not in full possession of his mind, and instead he was confined to a psychiatric jail. Gabriel Oak is now the last of Batsheba’s pretenders, but he feels somewhat guilty to propose to Batsheba because Mr. Bolwood was confined, and he had made Gabriel a partner of his wealth, so Gabriel decides to leave to the Americas. When Batsheba hears about Gabriel’s trip, she asks him to stay, and he asked her what she wanted to hear; if she wanted to marry him. She accepted the proposal, and they were married. After her bitter experiences, Bathsheba finally recognized that love is kind and does not look for its own interest. It is unconditional. It bears all things, endures all things, and it has a name; Gabriel Oak.

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