The French Lieutenant’s Woman

The French Lieutenant’s Woman

by

John Fowles

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Mrs. Tranter Character Analysis

Mrs. Tranter is Ernestina’s aunt, with whom she stays in Lyme. She’s one of the most truly kind characters, and in her treatment of her servants, she acts as a counterexample to Mrs. Poulteney and Charles. She sees her servant Mary as a whole person who experiences pain and passion, and she does whatever she can to help Mary, Sam, and even Sarah. Ernestina often tries to rebel against her aunt, but Charles likes Mrs. Tranter.
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Mrs. Tranter Character Timeline in The French Lieutenant’s Woman

The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Tranter appears in The French Lieutenant’s Woman. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 3
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...Charles stares into the mirror. He feels vaguely defeated due to the lunch conversation at Aunt Tranter ’s and uncertainty whether paleontology is a good vocation for him or Ernestina will ever... (full context)
Chapter 5
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...she’s not entirely obedient to men. This makes her irresistible to Charles. When Charles leaves Aunt Tranter ’s house, Ernestina goes to her room. Through the window she admires Charles as he... (full context)
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Aunt Tranter is persistently likable and optimistic. Even so, Ernestina tries to be angry with her about... (full context)
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Ernestina’s parents always send her to Aunt Tranter ’s house to recover from the social season in London. She hates going to Lyme,... (full context)
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...jasmine. She smells it, remembering the most joyful day of her life. When she hears Aunt Tranter ’s footsteps, she quickly puts the diary away. (full context)
Chapter 7
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...the razor on his finger, looking like he might cut someone’s throat. He complains that Mrs. Tranter ’s kitchen girl has called to him across the street to ask whether he had... (full context)
Chapter 11
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...her when she caught her kissing a stable boy. She then began to work for Mrs. Tranter , where she is happy and Mrs. Tranter likes her. Sometimes Mrs. Tranter even eats... (full context)
Chapter 12
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...and as she ladles him milk, he realizes he’s heard of the place and mentions Aunt Tranter ’s name. The woman knows of her and gives him a welcoming smile. When the... (full context)
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Back in town, Charles stops at Aunt Tranter ’s house to say that he’ll return for tea as soon as he’s changed. However,... (full context)
Chapter 14
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...are expected to allow the residents to examine them. He goes visiting with her and Aunt Tranter a few times a week, and the boredom is only remedied by Ernestina’s gratitude when... (full context)
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When Mrs. Tranter , Ernestina, and Charles are announced, Sarah makes to leave, but Mrs. Poulteney makes her... (full context)
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Mrs. Tranter greets Sarah and quietly asks her to come see her after Ernestina has left. Sarah’s... (full context)
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Mrs. Poulteney asks whether Mary is being troublesome to Mrs. Tranter , but Mrs. Tranter says she’s a wonderful servant. Mrs. Poulteney says that Mrs. Fairley... (full context)
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Sam is sitting in Mrs. Tranter ’s kitchen. When he met Mary that morning, he asked if he could deliver the... (full context)
Chapter 15
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Once Charles and Ernestina return to Aunt Tranter ’s and are left alone, Ernestina bursts into tears and throws herself into Charles’s arms.... (full context)
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Mrs. Tranter has been waiting outside, fearing that they’re quarrelling, but when she enters the room Ernestina... (full context)
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...heart, and he must not see her again until Charles has discovered whether Mary and Mrs. Tranter are all right with it. Sam grins and says he’s a Derby duck, which is... (full context)
Chapter 16
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...bored after supper, when convention demands that they spend time with each other. One evening, Aunt Tranter has gone out and Charles is lying on the sofa, watching Ernestina read a poem... (full context)
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...say something he has no right to say. She doesn’t object, so he says that Mrs. Tranter has discussed her story with great sympathy and has told him that Sarah isn’t happy... (full context)
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...they simply met by chance. They walk out of the gorse, and Charles says that Mrs. Tranter would like to help her, but Sarah only shakes her head. Charles has indeed discussed... (full context)
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...she can’t leave Lyme. He feels slightly offended and makes to leave. Sarah says that Mrs. Tranter wants to be kind, but kindness is more difficult for her to deal with than... (full context)
Chapter 17
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That evening, Charles, Ernestina, and Mrs. Tranter go to the Assembly Rooms. The Assembly Rooms are pleasant, and will one day be... (full context)
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...ladies to show off their dresses. Ernestina enjoys the glances at her fashionable clothing. While Mrs. Tranter explains who everyone is, Ernestina makes snide comments about them, calling many of them “gooseberries.”... (full context)
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...He’s become rather obsessed with the mystery of Sarah. He meant to tell Ernestina and Aunt Tranter , in strict secrecy, about his meeting with Sarah, but he never found the right... (full context)
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...know whether Sam and Mary met the next morning. But when Charles came out of Mrs. Tranter ’s house that day after talking to her about the servants’ romance, he made a... (full context)
Chapter 18
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...with an intense anguish. She says she has no one to help her. He mentions Mrs. Tranter , but Sarah says she doesn’t need kindness. Charles says it would not be proper... (full context)
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...has to leave and can’t return to meet her. He wishes she would talk to Mrs. Tranter instead. She’s very insistent, but Charles continues to refuse to meet her. However, Charles almost... (full context)
Chapter 19
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Charles and Ernestina have planned a surprise party for Aunt Tranter that evening. They’re all going to dine in Charles’s rooms, and Dr. Grogan is going... (full context)
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...Dr. Grogan makes some comments that aren’t quiet proper. Though Ernestina seems a little shocked, Aunt Tranter doesn’t, and Charles thinks that the older generation was less repressed and ruled by society... (full context)
Chapter 21
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...financially. She asks for a couple days to think about it. He concedes, saying that Mrs. Tranter must take charge now. Sarah seems about to cry, insisting she doesn’t deserve their kindness.... (full context)
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...the idea of not seeing her again, but he knows he’ll hear about her through Aunt Tranter . Suddenly, in the tunnel of ivy, they hear a woman’s laughter from the main... (full context)
Chapter 22
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...allow him to suppress his attraction to Sarah and deny her any more private meetings. Aunt Tranter will handle everything, and Charles won’t tell Ernestina what happened. He decides that Sarah’s unpredictability... (full context)
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...take a train from Exeter the next morning. He orders a carriage and walks to Aunt Tranter ’s house. Ernestina is irritated that he’s being called away so abruptly. (full context)
Chapter 24
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...Sir Robert thinks she’s just a draper’s daughter. Charles tries to calm her. They’re in Aunt Tranter ’s parlor; Ernestina has been crying. Aunt Tranter appears, smiling, and remarks that Charles returned... (full context)
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...Charles explains that Mrs. Tomkins is rich, so she can’t be marrying for the money. Aunt Tranter sits and asks whether Sir Robert might be too old to have children, but Charles... (full context)
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...while he was gone. Ernestina reveals that Mrs. Poulteney has fired Sarah. Charles is shocked. Aunt Tranter explains that it happened the previous night, and this morning a porter was told to... (full context)
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...as Mrs. Poulteney. Charles asks whether there’s any danger that Sarah might have committed suicide. Aunt Tranter says that men are searching the cliffs, but they haven’t found anything. There’s no word... (full context)
Chapter 25
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...Charles says that he’s trying to help an unfortunate woman and is going to surprise Mrs. Tranter with what he’s done. He asks that Sam keep it a secret, and Sam agrees,... (full context)
Chapter 27
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...as punishment. When Charles says that’s what he wants to talk about, Dr. Grogan assumes Mrs. Tranter is worried and says that he’s sent out a search party. (full context)
Chapter 32
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...was supposed to be ready to leave by noon. He was shocked. He went to Aunt Tranter ’s house. When Aunt Tranter came down to the kitchen, she found Mary weeping and... (full context)
Chapter 33
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...that she doesn’t have any references, but Charles says she can use Mrs. Talbot and Mrs. Tranter . Mrs. Tranter will also be willing to give her financial assistance. Sarah thanks him,... (full context)
Chapter 34
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...made of deferring to Charles in every way. But she’s heard through Sam, Mary, and Mrs. Tranter that Charles is leaving Lyme that day, and he hasn’t told her yet. When he... (full context)
Chapter 44
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When Charles and Sam arrive in Lyme, Charles goes to Aunt Tranter ’s house. Everyone is thrilled to see him, and he finds Ernestina in the back... (full context)
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...about Sam and Mary; they do what people of their class do. Dr. Grogan and Aunt Tranter live into their nineties. (full context)
Chapter 46
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Sarah invites Charles to sit down, which he does. He asks if she’s given Mrs. Tranter her address, but she says she’s only given it to him. After a silence, he... (full context)
Chapter 49
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Sam is outside the door of Aunt Tranter ’s kitchen, talking to Mary, who’s flabbergasted by what he’s telling her. She asks what... (full context)
Chapter 52
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Aunt Tranter comes home to disaster. Mary greets her with distress, and Aunt Tranter runs upstairs, where... (full context)
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When Grogan leaves, Mrs. Tranter goes up to Ernestina’s room, where Mary is sitting with her. Ernestina is asleep, looking... (full context)
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...knew Charles was going to break his engagement, but they were too scared to tell Mrs. Tranter . Mrs. Tranter checks on Ernestina. She asks whether Sam and Mary love each other,... (full context)
Chapter 57
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...in a pub, he doesn’t look so happy. Back in Lyme, he threw himself on Aunt Tranter ’s mercy, making it seem like Charles had promised him a loan of four hundred... (full context)