The Village of Raveloe (The Setting for SILAS MARNER)

It is a very chill, bluster-y day in Mendocino.

But self is snug as a bug in her apartment, endlessly reading angst-y one-shot fan fiction (Yes, self knows, she knows. She won’t get into that right now).

She’s making great progress with Silas Marner. In fact, she got 20 pages in with no hesitation. Until self suddenly realized that, at this rate, she’d be finishing Silas Marner in a jiffy, which she most certainly does not want to do. So she decided to start reading again from the very beginning. And it’s a good thing she did, because now that she is more used to the dense narrative, she finds that she’s missed many good passages, such as the one below, which describes the village of Raveloe:

Raveloe was a village where many of the old echoes lingered, undrowned by new voices. Not that it was one of those barren parishes lying on the outskirts of civilization — inhabited by meager sheep and thinly scattered shepherds: on the contrary, it lay on the rich central plain of what we are pleased to call Merry England, and held farms which speaking from a spiritual point of view, paid highly desirable tithes. But it was nestled in a snug, well-wooded hollow, quite an hour’s journey on horseback from any turnpike, where it was never reached by the vibrations of the coach-horn, or of public opinion. It was an important-looking village, with a fine old church and large churchyard in the heart of it, and two or three large brick-and-stone homesteads, with well-walled orchards and ornamental weathercocks, standing close upon the road, and lifting more imposing fronts than the rectory, which peeped from among the trees on the other side of the churchyard: — a village which showed at once the summits of its social life, and told the practiced eye that there was no great park and manor-house in the vicinity, but that there were several chiefs in Raveloe who could farm badly quite at their ease, drawing enough money from their bad farming, in those war times, to live in a rollicking fashion, and keep a jolly Christmas, Whitsun, and Easter tide.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.


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