What is a short summary of "Wuthering Heights?"


Quick Answer

"Wuthering Heights" is a multi-generational Gothic romance. It centers around the doomed love between Heathcliff, an orphan, and Cathy Earnshaw, the daughter of Heathcliff's adopted father, according to SparkNotes.

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Full Answer

Mr. Earnshaw returns from a trip with an orphaned gypsy boy he named Healthcliff and decides to raise Heathcliff as one of his own. Heathcliff and Cathy become inseparable and Mr. Earnshaw comes to favor Heathcliff over his biological son, Hindley. But when Hindley inherits Wuthering Heights after Mr. Earnshaw’s death, he makes Heathcliff a common servant. Cathy and Heathcliff still spend as much time together as possible until Cathy suffers an injury and stays with the Lintons at Thrushcross Grange.

During this time Cathy falls in love with Edgar Linton and learns how to become a proper young lady. When Cathy returns to Wuthering Heights, she rejects Heathcliff in favor of improving her social status. Scorned, Heathcliff leaves Wuthering Heights to seek his fortune and returns three years later to exact his revenge. Heathcliff inherits Wuthering Heights after Hindley dies and marries Isabella Linton, Edgar's sister, whom he mistreats. But when Cathy dies in childbirth, Heathcliff nearly goes mad with grief.

The story then picks up 13 years later with Cathy and Edgar's daughter, Catherine. Heathcliff continues to exact his revenge on Edgar by tricking Catherine into marrying his son Linton, Catherine's cousin. Edgar dies soon after the marriage, along with Linton, and Heathcliff forces Catherine to work as a servant at Wuthering Heights. While there, Catherine falls in love with Hareton, Hindley's son, but Heathcliff, still haunted by Cathy's memory, dies one night after walking on the moors. With Heathcliff's death, Catherine and Hareton are now free.

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