The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

by

Anne Brontë

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Gilbert Markham’s mother, a woman who is both imperious and indulgent with her children. She thinks no woman can be good enough for Gilbert, and warns him against forming any serious attachment to both Eliza Millward and Helen Graham. It is Mrs. Markham’s opinion that, if one is to live in a peaceful household, the woman should live to please the man and the man to please himself. She is, in Gilbert’s words, “the soul of order and punctuality.”

Mrs. Markham Quotes in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

The The Tenant of Wildfell Hall quotes below are all either spoken by Mrs. Markham or refer to Mrs. Markham. 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:
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Wordsworth Classics edition of The Tenant of Wildfell Hall published in 2001.
Chapter 1 Quotes

“No matter, my dear,” said I; “it is what every respectable female ought to know; and besides, though you are alone now, you will not be always so; you have been married and probably—I might say almost certainly—will be again.” “You are mistaken there, ma'am,” said she, almost haughtily; “I am certain I never shall.” “But I told her, I knew better.”

Related Characters: Helen Graham (speaker), Mrs. Markham (speaker)
Page Number: 13
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 6 Quotes

Then you must fall each into your proper place. You’ll do your business, and she, if she’s worthy of you, will do hers; but it's your business to please yourself, and hers to please you.

Related Characters: Mrs. Markham (speaker), Gilbert Markham
Page Number: 46
Explanation and Analysis:
Chapter 10 Quotes

You see what it is for women to affect to be different to other people.

Page Number: 70
Explanation and Analysis:
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Mrs. Markham Character Timeline in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall

The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Markham appears in The Tenant of Wildfell Hall. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1. A Discovery
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
...the fire, Gilbert takes care to remove his muddy clothes and boots. His mother ( Mrs. Markham ) is particular about such things. On the stair he meets his sister, Rose, and... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
...hopes to discover the intimate details of the woman’s life. Rose suggests that she and Mrs. Markham call on her as well, and Mrs. Markham agrees, pitying the woman and her lonely... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...puts in her tea and what sort of caps and aprons she prefers. Rose and Mrs. Markham visit the young woman, and report back to Gilbert—apparently Mrs. Graham is largely ignorant when... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...contrasting the young woman’s looks with the imperfect, albeit ample, charms of Eliza Millward. After Mrs. Markham leaves the room, she continues to regale Gilbert with details of Mrs. Graham’s person and... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...he is very much taken with her, despite the fact that his mother deeply disapproves. Mrs. Markham doesn’t consider any woman good enough for her eldest son. Gilbert likens Eliza to a... (full context)
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
Mrs. Markham respects the Reverend Millward a great deal, but when Gilbert and Fergus were young, did... (full context)
Chapter 2. An Interview
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
...Eliza then proceeds to shower her cat with kisses and caresses. Gilbert rises to leave— Mrs. Markham will be expecting him for tea—and Eliza treats him to a soft smile and bewitching... (full context)
Chapter 3. A Controversy
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
...pays a call on the Markhams, bringing Arthur (Jr.) along with her. She explains to Mrs. Markham that she has to keep him with her at all times. Her servant isn’t up... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
...the farmer’s magazine, but Helen grows alarmed and calls her son back to her side. Mrs. Markham then invites Helen to a house party, but Helen says she never goes to such... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
...way for her son in some areas could not possibly deprive him of life’s challenges. Mrs. Markham enters the conversation, expressing her fear that Helen’s approach to mothering will make a girl... (full context)
Chapter 4. The Party
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...Mrs. Wilson; and Mr. Lawrence—have come to the Markhams to join Gilbert, Fergus, Rose, and Mrs. Markham for the house party. Helen does not come, and Gilbert surmises that her absence actually... (full context)
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
...the consumption of alcohol. The reverend refuses wine in favor of beer, and that reminds Mrs. Markham of Helen Graham’s visit and her strong stance against drinking. Everyone in the party agrees... (full context)
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...his mother, who tells him that if he marries Eliza, he will break her heart. Mrs. Markham thinks Eliza a deceitful minx and not at all on the same level as her... (full context)
Chapter 6. Progression
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
...she does so, she complains that Gilbert and Fergus get preferential treatment in the household. Mrs. Markham is forever saving the best pie and cake for Gilbert and making sure that the... (full context)
Chapter 10. A Contract and a Quarrel
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
The gossip about little Arthur’s parentage has spread throughout the neighborhood. Even Mrs. Markham seems to think there might be some truth to the rumors, saying Helen has always... (full context)
Chapter 12. A Tete-a-Tete and a Discovery
Gender, Sexism, and Double Standards Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...and weeps like a child. After a while, he gets up and heads home, where Mrs. Markham scolds him for being late for dinner. Gilbert, however, is in no mood to eat... (full context)
Chapter 13. A Return to Duty
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
...singing a love ballad for Gilbert’s amusement, gets thrown against the wall for his trouble. Mrs. Markham lectures Gilbert on the need to be more pleasant and, while he is largely unmoved,... (full context)
Chapter 14. An Assault
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
Work and Idleness Theme Icon
 At home, Rose and Mrs. Markham have heard that Mr. Lawrence was thrown from his horse and brought to his house... (full context)
Chapter 52. Fluctuations
Christian Faith and Morality Theme Icon
Love and Marriage Theme Icon
...and Mrs. Maxwell soon become very good friends, and even though it takes several months, Mrs. Markham too becomes reconciled to his son’s decision to marry Helen. Gilbert bequeaths the farm to... (full context)