After much turmoil and tribulation, sorrow and pain, and sweat and tears, the final fates of the characters in Thomas Hardy’s classic novel Tess of the d”Urbervilles were dealt their final fate. But the question still remains: were the fates of Alec, Angel and Tess justified at the end of the novel? Throughout this essay, these three fates will be examined, and this question shall be answered.
From the moment Alec d”Urverville stepped up to the plate, there was an air of mischief around him. He was suave, debonair and extremely greasy. His character continued to head into a downward spiral throughout the entire novel. However, in the end the reader finds him dead on the bed with a knife stabbed through hit heart. But was his death true justification of the deeds he executed? Throughout this novel, Alec has been nothing but a thorn in Tess” side. He raped her, mentally broke her down twice, and prevented her from having the true love of Angel. Ethically Alec should have been hanged for all of his actions. This statement also comes true for the way his feelings were directed towards Tess. In the beginning, Tess was pure sport for Alec. He needed to be the master of her, and he accomplished his goal. As the novel progressed she not only became a goal, but an obligation to Alec as well. It seems that whenever he cannot win Tess with his “incredible” charm, he turns to his wealth to try to sway her. “”I have enough and more than enough to put you out of anxiety, both for you and your parents and sisters.”” [Hardy, pg. 329] After all of Alec’s persuasion, and assurance that he has changed, he still reverts to his old techniques when attempting to attain Tess” affection. This sheer fact is why Alec’s death was justification for his life.
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Angel Clare was the only main character in the novel whose fate was physically enjoyable in the end. On the other hand, mentally his fate was worse than death.