My Cousin Rachel

by

Daphne du Maurier

Teachers and parents! Struggling with distance learning? Our Teacher Edition on My Cousin Rachel can help.

Philip Ashley Character Analysis

Philip Ashley is the novel’s narrator and protagonist. Philip was orphaned at a young age: his father died fighting the French in an unspecified war, and his mother lived only five months longer than her husband. Since he was eighteen months old, Philip has grown up under the care of his beloved older cousin, Ambrose Ashley, whom he loves as a father. Philip has inherited many of Ambrose’s views of the world, including his opinion that women are simple-minded and annoying. Philip has never known a woman aside from his childhood friend, Louise Kendall, and Mrs. Pascoe, the vicar’s annoying wife. Consequently, he is at a loss when he meets Rachel Ashley, Ambrose’s beautiful Italian widow. However, Philip is young and naïve, and he quickly finds himself beguiled by Rachel, though he had originally sworn to hate her forever. Over the course of the novel, Philip’s infatuation with Rachel begins to reveal itself in a dominating, violent attitude. Philip becomes obsessed with “owning” Rachel, even if it means physically hurting her in order to do so. Du Maurier frequently uses dramatic irony—where the reader knows something the main character does not—to show how Philip’s obsession with Rachel blinds him to reality. Du Maurier depicts Philip as a sympathetic yet deeply troubled character. Philip may be young and rather foolish, but du Maurier makes clear that this is not an excuse for his behavior throughout the novel.

Philip Ashley Quotes in My Cousin Rachel

The My Cousin Rachel quotes below are all either spoken by Philip Ashley or refer to Philip Ashley. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Guilt Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Sourcebooks edition of My Cousin Rachel published in 2009.
Chapter 1 Quotes

How soft and gentle her name sounds when I whisper it. It lingers on the tongue, insidious and slow, almost like poison, which is apt indeed. It passes from the tongue to the parched lips, and from the lips back to the heart. And the heart controls the body, and the mind also. Shall I be free of it one day? In forty, in fifty years? […] Perhaps, when all is said and done, I shall have no wish to be free. As yet, I cannot tell.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 9
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 6 Quotes

Master Philip had gone forever. Mr. Ashley had come home. It was a strange feeling. In a sense it made me humble, and at the same time oddly proud. I was aware of a sort of confidence and of a strength that I had not known before, and a new elation. It seemed to me that I felt as a soldier might feel on being given command of a battalion; this sense of ownership, of pride, and of possession too, came to me […] But, unlike a soldier, I would never have to give up my command. It was mine for life.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker)
Page Number: 65
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 7 Quotes

I don’t know what I thought to see. Something bold, perhaps, with loops and flourishes; or its reverse, darkly scrawled and mean. This was just handwriting, much like any other, except that the ends of the words tailed off in little dashes, making the words themselves not altogether easy to decipher.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Related Symbols: Letters
Page Number: 73
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 8 Quotes

Somewhere there was a bitter creature, crabbed and old, hemmed about with lawyers; somewhere a larger Mrs. Pascoe, loud-voiced, arrogant; somewhere a petulant spoilt doll, with corkscrew curls; somewhere a viper, sinuous and silent. But none of them was with me in this room. Anger seemed futile now, and hatred too, and as for fear—how could I fear anyone who did not measure up to my shoulder, and had nothing remarkable about her save a sense of humour and small hands?

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Mrs. Pascoe
Related Symbols: Rachel’s Hands
Page Number: 101
Explanation and Analysis:

Once, not so long ago, I had seen other eyes with that same age-old look of suffering. Those eyes too had held reserve and pride, coupled with the same abasement, the same agony of supplication […] it must be because the eyes are the same colour and they belong to the same race. Otherwise they could have nothing in common, the beggar woman beside the Arno and my cousin Rachel.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 103
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 10 Quotes

I looked up, startled, and it seemed to me, as we stared at one another, that she knew now all my fantasies, my dreams, that she saw one by one the faces of the women I had conjured all those months. Denial was no use, protestation absurd. The barriers were down. It was a queer feeling, as though I sat naked in my chair.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 119
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 11 Quotes

“Not unremarkable,” said Mr. Pascoe, flipping the head of a hortensia with his cane, “certainly not unremarkable. Nor would I say, as the girls do, beautiful. But feminine, that is the word, most decidedly feminine.”

Related Characters: Mr. Hubert Pascoe (speaker), Philip Ashley, Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 139
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 12 Quotes

“Ambrose was wrong in what he said of women,” I shouted. “At half-past eight in the morning they look very well indeed.”

“Ambrose was not referring to half-past eight,” she called back to me; “he was referring to half-past six, and he did not mean downstairs.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 154
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 13 Quotes

The voice, so near to tears again, did something to me. A kind of tightness came to my throat and to my belly.

“I would much rather that you hit me,” I told her, “than that you cried.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 169
Explanation and Analysis:

The little girl look and the choir-boy surplice had misled me. She was a woman all the time.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 173
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 14 Quotes

“There is a tisana for that too,” she said, “made from the leaves of raspberries and of nettles. If a woman drinks that for six months before the birth, she has her baby without pain.”

“That’s witchcraft,” I said. “They wouldn’t think it right to do so.”

“What nonsense! Why should women suffer?” said my cousin Rachel.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker)
Page Number: 177
Explanation and Analysis:

I hoped she had not noticed—I had barely noticed it myself—that for the first time I had not called her cousin, but Rachel. I don’t know how it happened. I think it must have been because standing there, with my arms about her, she had been so much smaller than myself.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 187
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 15 Quotes

I felt strangely moved, as if all that I did and said was laid down for me and planned, while at the same time a small still voice whispered to me in some dark cell of matter, “You can never go back upon this moment. Never… Never…”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 202-3
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 16 Quotes

She would take great care about her person, when she went calling. Her best mantle, and her new veil and bonnet. I would sit with my back to the horses, in the carriage, so that I could look at her; and, I think to tease me, she would not lift her veil.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 207
Explanation and Analysis:

Her shoulders were bare. She had dressed her hair higher than usual, the roll of it was looped up and drawn back, showing her ears. Around her neck was the collar of pearls. It was the only piece of jewellery [sic] upon her person. It glowed soft and white against her skin. I had never seen her look so radiant, or so happy. Louise and the Pascoes had been right after all. Rachel was beautiful.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Louise Kendall
Related Symbols: Pearl Collar
Page Number: 219
Explanation and Analysis:

Then she kissed me. Not as she had done before. And as I stood there, holding her, I thought to myself, “It was not yearning for home, nor sickness of the blood, nor fever of the brain—but for this, that Ambrose died.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 219
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 19 Quotes

And I could see them sitting on the terrace of the villa, with this strange shadow between them, built out of nothing but their own doubts and fears, and it seemed to me that the seeds of this same shadow went back beyond all reckoning and could never more be traced.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 253
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 22 Quotes

She lifted her veil, and the eyes that looked into mine were not smiling as I had hoped, or tearful as I had feared, but steady and serene and quite unmoved, the eyes of someone who has been out upon a matter of business and settled it to satisfaction.

For no great reason I felt blank, and in some sense cheated. I wanted the eyes to be as I remember them at sunrise.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 303
Explanation and Analysis:

She did not answer. She went on looking at me, incredulous, baffled, like someone listening to words in a foreign language that cannot be translated or comprehended […] She had not understood what it was I asked of her at midnight, nor I, in my blind wonder, what she had given, therefore what I had believed to be a pledge of love was something different, without meaning, on which she had put her own interpretation.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 313
Explanation and Analysis:

I tried to think what else I had to give. She had the property, the money, and the jewels. She had my mind, my body, and my heart. There was only my name, and that she bore already. Nothing remained. Unless it should be fear. I took the candle from her hand and placed it on the ledge, above the stairs. I put my hands about her throat, encircling it; and now she could not move, but watched me, her eyes wide. And it was as though I held a frightened bird in my two hands, which, with added pressure, would flutter awhile, and die, and with release would fly away to freedom.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 314
Explanation and Analysis:

I went to my room, and catching sight of my reflection in the mirror paused, and stared. Surely it was Ambrose who stood there, with the sweat upon his forehead, the face drained of all colour? Then I moved and was myself again; with stooping shoulders, limbs that were clumsy and too long, hesitant, untutored, the Philip who had indulged in school-boy folly.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Page Number: 315
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 23 Quotes

I could not believe it possible that a girl I knew and trusted could have so damnable a mind, and speak—that was the greatest hell—with so much logic and plain common sense, to tear apart another woman like herself.

“Is it your father’s legal mind speaking in you, or you yourself?” I said to her.

“Not my father,” she said; “you know his reserve. He has said little to me. I have a judgement [sic] of my own.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Louise Kendall (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Page Number: 321
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 25 Quotes

So we had come to battle. Her words were a challenge that I could not meet. Her woman’s brain worked differently from mine. All argument was fair, all blows were foul. Physical strength alone disarmed a woman.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 357
Explanation and Analysis:

Then, tears coming to her eyes, she looked at me and said, “A woman can’t suffer twice. I have had all this before.” And lifting her fingers to her throat she added, “Even the hands around my neck. That too. Now will you understand?”

I looked over her head, straight at the portrait above the mantelpiece, and the young face of Ambrose staring at me was my own. She had defeated both of us.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 358
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 26 Quotes

As I lay there in the darkness I was not aware of danger, or of fear. Only compassion. I saw her as someone not responsible for what she did, besmirched by evil. Compelled and driven by the man who had power over her, lacking, through fault of circumstance and birth, in some deep moral sense, she was capable by instinct and by impulse of this final act. I wanted to save her from herself, and knew not how.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Signor Rainaldi
Page Number: 370
Explanation and Analysis:

I had held it many times, in love, before. Felt the small size of it, turned the rings upon the fingers, seen the blue veins upon the back, touched the small close-filed nails. Now, as it rested in my hand, I saw it, for the first time, put to another purpose. I saw it take the laburnum pods, in deft fashion, and empty out the seeds […] I remembered once I had told her that her hands were beautiful, and she had answered, with a laugh, that I was the first to tell her so. “They have their uses,” she said. “Ambrose used to say, when I was gardening, that they were workmen’s hands.”

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley (speaker), Ambrose Ashley
Related Symbols: Rachel’s Hands
Page Number: 371
Explanation and Analysis:

Now, no part of her was strange. I knew the best, I knew the worst. Even the motives for all she did, baffling perhaps even to herself, I guessed them too. She hid nothing for me now, Rachel my torment…

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley
Page Number: 375
Explanation and Analysis:

Her head was turned to him as she listened, so that from the head of the table, where I sat, I looked on her in profile. She was always a stranger, thus. Those neat clipped features on a coin. Dark and withdrawn, a foreign woman standing in a doorway, a shawl about her head, her hand outstretched. But full-face, when she smiled, a stranger never. The Rachel that I knew, that I had loved.

Related Characters: Philip Ashley (speaker), Rachel Ashley, Nick Kendall
Related Symbols: Eyes
Page Number: 378
Explanation and Analysis:
Get the entire My Cousin Rachel LitChart as a printable PDF.
My Cousin Rachel PDF

Philip Ashley Character Timeline in My Cousin Rachel

The timeline below shows where the character Philip Ashley appears in My Cousin Rachel. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1
Guilt Theme Icon
The novel opens with twenty-five-year-old Philip Ashley recounting a childhood memory. When Philip was a boy, criminals were hung at a... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip explains that he hasn’t thought of Tom Jenkyn since that day. Now, however, he finds... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
This leads Philip to think about two warnings he did receive about Rachel, who is revealed to be... (full context)
Chapter 2
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
The chapter opens with Philip remembering his last night with Ambrose, before Ambrose “set out on his final journey.” Philip... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip describes his childhood in Ambrose’s home. Since he was orphaned at eighteen months of age,... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Ambrose began wintering abroad after Philip finished his schooling. While away, Ambrose enjoyed collecting foreign plants to bring back to England... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Ambrose leaves for Italy, and Philip spends time at home visiting with his godfather, Nick Kendall, and his daughter, Louise, a... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...knows when to hold her tongue. None of that endless yattering, so common in women.” Philip is surprised by his cousin’s interest in Rachel, and chats about Rachel with Nick and... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
After not hearing from Ambrose for several months, Philip receives an Easter letter from him. In it, Ambrose announces that he and Rachel were... (full context)
Chapter 3
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip feels guilty about how unhappy Ambrose’s marriage has rendered him and tries to hide his... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
In a conversation with his childhood friend Louise Kendall, Philip reacts particularly snappishly to the topic of Rachel. This prompts Louise to ask Philip, “You... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip finds himself miserably imagining what Rachel will be like. He hates all the versions of... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Mrs. Pascoe’s comment causes Philip to imagine yet another version of Rachel: “The nursery receded, and I saw the drawing-room... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Time jumps forward to the winter, and Philip begins to receive anxious, nostalgic letters from Ambrose, filled with “a kind of loneliness that... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip does not hear from Ambrose throughout the spring, and he begins to grow worried. In... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
On a July morning, Philip sets out on his journey to Italy; as he is driving away from the estate,... (full context)
Chapter 4
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip arrives in Florence, Italy, on August 15. He is anxious to reach Ambrose, and finds... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip bathes at a hostel and then hails a carriage to take him to the Villa... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
The news of Ambrose’s death makes Philip feel numb. Giuseppe takes Philip through the villa, followed by Giuseppe’s wife and their child.... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Giuseppe asks if Philip would like to see the room where Ambrose died; Philip agrees. The room is “plain... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Giuseppe takes Philip out onto a terrace and describes how beautiful the villa and its gardens are “on... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
As they walk back through the villa, Philip gives Giuseppe some money and thanks him. When Philip asks what has been done with... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
As Philip leaves the villa, Giuseppe’s wife runs into their home and returns with Ambrose’s hat, the... (full context)
Chapter 5
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip returns to Florence from the Villa Sangalletti. Still in a daze, he finds himself wandering... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rainaldi is surprised to see Philip, and Philip himself is immediately wary of Rainaldi’s “dark and deep-set” eyes and “disdainful” demeanor.... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Rainaldi offers to contact Ambrose’s doctors on Philip’s behalf, but Philip declines. Rainaldi then produces Ambrose’s death certificate, saying that he has sent... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip continues to press Rainaldi for details about Ambrose’s letters, which he claims are proof that... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip demands more answers from Rainaldi: why didn’t Rachel contact him, Philip asks, when Ambrose fell... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Rainaldi offers to make arrangements for Philip to visit Ambrose’s grave, but after a brief conversation, Philip realizes he does not want... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip finds himself again at the riverside, and he stands there reflecting. He decides he believes... (full context)
Chapter 6
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
It is September by the time Philip returns home to his estate in Cornwall. The servants and tenants are all in mourning,... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
The following day, Nick Kendall pays a visit to Philip in order to read him Ambrose’s will. Rainaldi was correct in stating that Kendall has... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Nick Kendall and Philip spend some time reminiscing about Philip’s boyhood days. Kendall laments that Philip has grown up... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip then recounts for Nick Kendall his visit to Rainaldi. He bitterly informs his godfather of... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Surprised by Nick Kendall’s forcefulness, Philip awkwardly asks him (and Louise, who has been out walking in the Ashley gardens) for... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip settles down to work on the estate; there is much to do given his long... (full context)
Chapter 7
Guilt Theme Icon
Nick Kendall shows Philip the letter from Rachel. In it, she provides an account of Ambrose’s death and also... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip goes out to Nick Kendall’s summer-house to speak with Louise. Louise expresses her opinion that... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip informs Seecombe, the steward, that Rachel will be coming to stay. Seecombe is glad of... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Through Nick Kendall, Philip makes arrangements to send a carriage for Rachel on Friday. In the meantime, the servants... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip spends the afternoon out riding and walking, feeling anxious about Rachel’s arrival, as if he... (full context)
Chapter 8
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Rachel calls Philip into her room, where she has been joined by his old retriever, Don, and several... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel insists that Ambrose “always intended [Philip] to have his room,” and that he would be very glad of the current arrangements.... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel and Philip continuing talking, but Philip decides: “I had smiled at her once, I was damned if... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Sitting by the fire with Rachel, Philip finds himself unable to muster hatred for her. In fact, he is half asleep. He... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Before Philip leaves, Rachel gives him Ambrose’s old walking stick. She then pushes him from her room.... (full context)
Chapter 9
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip rises early the next morning, and visits the stables, where he discusses Rachel’s wish to... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
In the garden, Rachel cheerfully informs Philip that she brought to Plymouth “all the plants and shrubs that we had collected, Ambrose... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
At the house, Rachel and Philip eat lunch together. Philip is impressed that Rachel “has a certain independence of spirit that... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
As they continue to walk, Rachel begins describing the Villa Sangalletti to Philip, and he realizes that Rachel does not know he visited the villa (even though Philip... (full context)
Chapter 10
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel is shocked to learn that Philip was at the villa on August 15, the day after she left Florence. She insists... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel then asks why Philip invited her to his home, and he admits that it was “to watch [her] suffer... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel says she wishes Philip would go on condemning her, as “it would make it easier in the long run... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel and Philip go on talking, and Philip explains how jealous he was of Rachel when he first... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip is confused. He asks whether Rachel means that Ambrose “put [her] on a sort of... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip assures Rachel that Ambrose could have just as easily fallen ill at home in Cornwall.... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel and Philip say goodnight on the stairwell, after assuring one another that their feelings of jealousy and... (full context)
Chapter 11
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
It is Sunday morning, and Philip and Rachel are going to church. Rachel is wearing a veiled hat that covers her... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel arrive at church. Contrary to his expectations, Philip finds himself feeling “confident and... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Outside the church, Rachel coyly suggests that she ride with Nick Kendall, while Philip rides with Louise. (It was always Ambrose’s custom to dine after church with the Kendalls,... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Back at the Ashley estate, Philip tours Mr. Pascoe and his daughters around the garden, while Mrs. Pascoe visits the blue... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
As dinner draws to a close, Nick Kendall asks whether Philip reminds Rachel of Ambrose, and she replies, “So much so […] that I have wondered... (full context)
Chapter 12
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
As the dinner guests are leaving the Ashley house, Philip hears Kendall mention that Rachel will be coming to Pelyn. Philip “squash[es] the idea,” saying... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip insists he does not want to marry anyone, least of all Louise. Rachel insists that... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel teases Philip by suggesting that he “make up a little list of rules” for her to study... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip is immediately humiliated by his thoughtless comment to Rachel. He knows he will not be... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
As he continues to walk, Philip hears Rachel’s voice calling to him from her open bedroom window. Though he would like... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
On Thursday morning, Rachel’s Italian plants arrive from Plymouth, and Philip uses the opportunity to visit Nick Kendall at Pelyn. The two discuss Rachel’s situation, and... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
As he is leaving Pelyn, Philip runs into Louise. He asks whether she has gotten over her “vile humour” from Sunday,... (full context)
Chapter 13
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip returns home from Pelyn by way of town, where he has deposited Kendall’s letter at... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
After she finishes with her hair, Rachel drops a hairpin in Philip’s lap and tells him, “Put it under your pillow, and watch Seecombe’s face at breakfast... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
After Rachel reads the letter, she and Philip have an argument. She maintains that he has humiliated her by bestowing the money on... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip dines alone, still furious at Rachel and surer than ever that he will never marry.... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip goes to Rachel’s room and apologizes to her, saying that he “had no idea of... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...Monday, as she has already stayed longer at the Ashley estate than she had planned. Philip insists that “if Ambrose had not been such a lunatic this would have been [Rachel’s]... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip convinces Rachel to stay by asking her to tend the gardens, as Ambrose would have... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Instead of going directly to bed, Philip stays up to write a letter to Nick Kendall to “reassure him that all had... (full context)
Chapter 14
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
The next morning, Philip joins Rachel while she works in the garden. The two again discuss whether Philip will... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
October arrives, and Rachel spends three weeks working in the garden. She and Philip also visit the tenants on the estate, and Rachel endears herself to them with her... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
One night, when Rachel and Philip are talking in the library, Rachel mentions that the people of the neighborhood have provided... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel and Philip continue a pattern of teasing and jealousy, respectively, always concluding their days with conversation in... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
By the end of October, the fair weather breaks, and—at Seecombe’s suggestion—Philip decides to spend one rainy morning going through Ambrose’s old things. Rachel joins him, and... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel move on to sorting through Ambrose’s books, chatting as they do so. Rachel... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Rachel notices Philip has found something, but Philip insists it’s “nothing” and throws the letter in the fire.... (full context)
Chapter 15
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel finish sorting through the books by late morning; Rachel declines Philip’s request for... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
During dinner, Seecombe asks whether Rachel has shown Philip the blue coverings she ordered for her bedroom. Philip looks at the coverings after dinner;... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Distractedly, Philip asks Rachel whether she has lived her whole life in Italy, and Rachel gives an... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Again, Rachel asks what was in the letter that Philip found, and he admits that Ambrose expressed in it his anxiety “about expenditure.” Rachel seems... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Rachel abruptly stops talking, and says that she wants Philip “to remember [Ambrose] as [he] knew him.” “The last months were mine,” she says, “and... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip assures Rachel that there is no need to speak of the past, and that she... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip wishes that Rachel would rest her head on his chest, as she did that morning... (full context)
Chapter 16
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
November and December pass, and for the first time, Philip finds that “autumn [passes] without monotony.” Philip and Rachel fall into a comfortable pattern. In... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel and Philip spend the evenings either in the library, with Philip as host, or in the blue... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
In December, Philip’s lonely nights take on a magical quality. He sits in front of an open window... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip decides to revive Ambrose’s tradition of giving a Christmas Eve dinner for the tenants on... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
At the bank, Philip looks at the jewels but quickly remembers that Rachel will not wear colored stones because... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...with the addition of the Kendalls and the Pascoes. On the night of the dinner, Philip leaves the pearl collar in Rachel’s room with a note asking her to “wear it... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Rachel comes downstairs dressed for the dinner, wearing the pearl collar. Philip is struck by the realization that he finds her beautiful. Rachel puts her arms around... (full context)
Chapter 17
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel take their seats, and the dinner begins. Philip is charmed to find that... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
While the tenants are outside, Philip greets the Pascoes and the Kendalls. Philip finds Nick Kendall’s manner “abrupt”; he soon notices... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
...Nick Kendall makes a cold comment about how much the necklace is worth. Rachel gives Philip a confused look, and he immediately announces that “the carriages have come.” As the guests... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
...that he is worried she is sending the money out of the country. Kendall dismisses Philip’s suggestion that Rachel has used the extra money to purchase the tenants’ presents. Unfazed, Philip... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Nick Kendall goes on to say that Philip was not within his rights in removing the pearl collar from the bank. He adds... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Nick Kendall insists that Philip retrieve the pearl collar from Rachel and return it to the bank. When Philip refuses,... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Suddenly, Philip notices Rachel and Louise in the doorway. Rachel calmly gives the pearl collar to Nick... (full context)
Chapter 18
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel spend a pleasant Christmas Day together—but Philip is still angry with Nick Kendall... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip uses the home improvements as an excuse to suspend the regular Sunday dinner that Ambrose... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Early spring arrives. One morning, Philip is summoned to the home of a tenant, who is sick in bed. This tenant... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip wanders through the grounds, up to a path that overlooks the estate. There, a granite... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip thinks: “Back in the house, my loyalty was with her.” Here near the granite stone,... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
...bequeaths the Ashley house and estate to Rachel during her lifetime, with the caveat that Philip be in control of running the state, and that possession pass to him upon Rachel’s... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip refolds Ambrose’s letter, places it in his pocketbook, and buries the book in a hole... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Rachel is in the library tending to Don. She is distraught, and Philip finds he is not thinking of “the letter buried deep beneath the granite slab, nor... (full context)
Chapter 19
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Don dies around midnight. In Rachel’s bedroom, Rachel and Philip reminisce about Philip’s tenth birthday, when Ambrose gifted him with Don. Philip talks of his... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel announces that she intends to leave the Ashley home after Philip’s birthday. Philip is unfazed by this news because of the “plan” he has in mind.... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel asks to drop the subject, but Philip forces the issue by asking her what happened to the will. He then suggests that... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip asks a few more questions, and then tells Rachel that she will know his reason... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
When the lawyer points out that Philip has come up with no provision should Rachel remarry, Philip decides that in the case... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
When Philip returns home, he notices a carriage in the driveway. He goes inside and hears Rachel... (full context)
Chapter 20
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip and Rainaldi exchange a few tense words, and then Philip goes upstairs to dress for... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
After dinner, Rachel and Rainaldi go up to her room to discuss their business; Philip declines Rachel’s invitation to join them later. Instead, he wanders the grounds and broods: “Would... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rainaldi stays an entire week, and Philip continues to find him unpleasant and condescending. One evening, when Rainaldi and Philip are alone... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Before he goes upstairs to dress for dinner, Rainaldi tells Philip that the “strong medicine” of Rachel’s presence, “taken in so large a dose, […] could... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
On the last day of Rainaldi’s stay, the Kendalls dine at the Ashley estate. Philip is annoyed by Rainaldi’s suggestion that Rachel come to him in London, where he will... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
...come to him in London, but she insists that she will make no plans before Philip’s birthday on April 1. Rainaldi snidely replies, “It must be odd to have a birthday... (full context)
Chapter 21
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
March passes quickly, and Philip becomes increasingly excited about his birthday. He even reminds Rachel, “You have to remember what... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
On March 31, Philip visits the bank to withdraw all of the family jewels. The banker is reluctant to... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip stashes the jewels at home, and then rides to Pelyn to see Nick Kendall, carrying... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Kendall watches as Philip signs the document, though not before offering him this warning: “There are some women […]... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
At home, Philip receives a case of pipes from the servants as a birthday gift. Philip and Rachel... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip goes inside and fetches the basket full of jewels. He returns outside, under Rachel’s window,... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel is overwhelmed by the jewels, and she and Philip embrace. “It was as though,” Philip thinks, “she caught my madness, shared my folly, and... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel presses Philip for an answer, and he recalls the conversation they once had about how he did... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip wakes the next morning before the servants. He goes outside and stands on the grass,... (full context)
Chapter 22
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip goes back inside, feeling “calm and still.” He falls asleep, and when he wakes, he... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Downstairs, Seecombe presents Philip with a portrait of himself, and the two hang it in the hall together. Philip... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
While walking, Philip spots the carriage; he bids it stop and climbs in beside Rachel, who reveals that... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Rachel’s cool demeanor perplexes Philip. “Since yesterday,” he thinks, “everything was changed. Yet she gave no sign of it.” Rachel... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip kisses Rachel passionately in the woods, telling her, “This […] was my plan, which you... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
While walking home, Philip and Rachel pass the granite stone—Ambrose’s “tombstone.” Rachel insists on stopping to see it, and... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip and Rachel dine. Rachel wears the pearl collar, but Philip finds this makes her “not... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Soon after dinner, the Kendalls stop by to celebrate Philip’s birthday. Heavily inebriated by this point, Philip has resolved to announce his engagement to Rachel.... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip stays in the dining room, and listens as the Kendalls leave. His head a bit... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip is stunned. He thinks the only way he can now influence Rachel is with fear,... (full context)
Chapter 23
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
The next morning, Philip breakfasts alone, where he receives a note from Louise. She says she can meet him... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Louise does her best to comfort Philip. “There has been deception from the first,” she says, “and you were prepared for it,... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip takes Louise’s comments as “slander, almost blasphemy.” He responds that Louise has been prejudiced against... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip and Louise exit the church; Louise’s carriage is waiting to take her home. Louise tells... (full context)
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip is offended. “[Rachel] would not refuse to marry me because of that one clause,” he... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip spends some time at the inn in town, the Rose and Crown, and then rides... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Home and Belonging Theme Icon
Philip is enraged. Without changing out of his wet clothes, he storms to Rachel’s room, where... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip now regrets strangling Rachel. He begins to worry that he has taken a chill, and... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip drifts off into a fevered dream, where he imagines himself on the banks of the... (full context)
Chapter 24
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip awakens, and is puzzled to find that the tree outside is window is already in... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip begins to convalesce. Though he cannot remember much of his illness, he is sure that... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
When Philip remarks that there were laburnum trees in the Villa Sangalletti, Tamlyn replies that he and... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Rachel attempts to soothe Philip, encouraging him to continue making improvements to the estate after she has left. “In a... (full context)
Chapter 25
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Over the ensuing weeks as May turns to June, Philip and Rachel attempt to remain “light-hearted,” not speaking of Rachel’s impending departure. Philip suffers lingering... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip looks for signs that Rachel will soon be leaving. He does not see any trunks,... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip is perplexed; why has Rachel been going to the town inn every day? He ventures... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
At home, Philip finds Rachel in the library. He accuses her of having a secret, but before he... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip orders Rachel to send Rainaldi away, but she stands her ground, saying that she will... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
...comes to dinner at the Ashley house. Seecombe accidentally shows Rainaldi into the library, where Philip is alone. The two have a tense conversation. Philip is disgusted by Rainaldi, and particularly... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
After Rainaldi leaves, Rachel knocks on Philip’s door, where she finds him sitting by the window. She bids him put on a... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip tells Rachel she should spend time with Rainaldi if she prefers. Rachel replies that Rainaldi... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
That night, Philip has a dream about returning to the granite stone in the woods and re-reading the... (full context)
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
In the evening, Philip sits in Rachel’s bedroom as she brews his tisana. He cannot take his eyes off... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
In the early hours of the morning, Philip sneaks into Rachel’s room and looks for the letter. He cannot find it, though he... (full context)
Chapter 26
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip calmly returns the envelope and seeds to the drawer. He then goes downstairs to the... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Morning dawns; it is Sunday, and Philip and Rachel take the carriage to church. Philip wishes that he could hate Rachel, “as... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
As Rachel, the Kendalls, and the Pascoes are making plans for the evening, Philip notices one of his construction workers standing nearby. The man approaches Philip and cautions him,... (full context)
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Philip rides home in a carriage with Louise. He asks if she is aware that laburnum... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
After the meal, the Pascoes and Nick Kendall depart. Rachel invites Louise and Philip to her bedroom to drink tisana. Philip refuses to drink his cup, telling Rachel she... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
After a while, Rachel suggests a walk in the garden. Philip claims he has something to show Louise, so Rachel says she will walk alone. Philip... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Women, Sexuality, and Society Theme Icon
Back upstairs, Philip tells Louise he thinks Rachel has been poisoning him. He says the proof lies in... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Jealousy, Possessiveness, and Unknowability Theme Icon
Philip cannot find Rainaldi’s letter. Louise suggests he check the blotter; the letter is there. It... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
...che le ore felici,” as “remember only the happy hours.” Louise wonders whether she and Philip have “misjudged” Rachel, as they cannot find proof she is trying to poison Philip. “There... (full context)
Guilt Theme Icon
Philip crosses to the window, and looks out on the terrace walk. Louise asks him what... (full context)
Identity and Destiny Theme Icon
Philip runs outside to the terrace walk, but sees no sign of Rachel. He notices two... (full context)