Character Sketch of Mr. Lockwood in Wuthering Heights

Character Sketch of Mr. Lockwood in Wuthering Heights

Character Sketch of Mr. Lockwood in Wuthering Heights

Mr. Lockwood occasionally takes part in the narration of the story of the novel, Wuthering Heights besides Nelly Dean who narrates it at length. He is the new tenant at Thrushcross Grange. He is a man of the world, an urbane gentleman, at ease in company, gallant to ladies and confident with men.

A Man of Temperate Disposition

He was a man of temperate disposition. Now and then he took a short holiday from the dull town-life to enjoy a spell of merriments of the sea-coast or the quite seclusion of the countryside. He was never over-zealous after anything. Being a man of temperate disposition, he was amazed and even shocked at the inhospitality of Mr. Heathcliff. Normal in his mode of living and working, he felt rudely shaken at his abnormal reception at Wuthering Heights. Heathcliff showed no warmth to him and dogs became violent at his sight. Other inmates of the house also remained indifferent to him. The shock he received became all the more agonizing by the tale that Mrs. Nelly Dean told him and he decided to leave the place forthwith and return to London.

Mr. Lockwood: Mildly Romantic

Lockwood was a silly, conceited young man. He was of mildly romantic disposition, and hence prone to exaggerate. While holidaying in the quite and peaceful seclusion of a place, he thought of himself as a misanthropist and an exaggeratedly reserved individual. He took delight in commenting poet-like on the seclusion of the place, saying, “This is certainly a beautiful country! In all England I do not believe that I could have fixed on a situation so completely removed from the stir of society. A perfect misanthropist’s heaven; and Mr. Heathcliff and I are such a suitable pair to divide desolation between us. A capital fellow!” The girl that he liked at the sea-coast impressed him as a goddess.

Also Read:

In the matter of love, too, he had a romantic bias. He never expressed this sentiment, but he looks expressed more than his words that he was over head and ears in love. In the same strain he reflects while coming back from Wuthering Heights:

“What a realization of something more romantic than a fairy tale it would have been for Mrs. Heathcliff had she and I struck up an attachment, as her good nurse desired, and migrated together into the stirring atmosphere of the town.”

Not Imbued with Strong Passion

The love of Mr. Lockwood remained only a mental conception. He dwelt upon it within his mind without getting overwhelmed by it. In fact, he always ran away from every strong attachment. He regarded the girl he saw at the sea-coast as a goddess, and was happy to receive response in the form of “the sweetest of all imaginable look.” From it, he confessed that he “shrank icily into myself, like a snail.”

There is indeed a hint that he was attracted by the younger Catherine but he failed to make any advance towards her although later on when he saw her with Hareton he regretted,

“I could and I bit my lip in spite at having thrown away the chance I might have had of doing something besides staring at its smiling beauty.”

Mr. Lockwood: Curious by Nature

He possessed a live mind curious to know about strange things. After witnessing the strange ways at Wuthering Heights and dreaming of the chapel and Cathy, he did not run away in horror but became curious to know the mystery behind the whole affair. He asked Mrs. Nelly Dean, the housekeeper, to tell him something about the landlord’s family. The curiosity was first roused by the pretty girl-widow, but later on the whole story caught his fancy and he goaded Mrs. Nelly Dean again and again to narrate it.

The mysterious place did not pass out of his mind even after he left it. The very name Gimmerton kept him excited and he halted in his journey to see the developments at Thrushcross Grange and Wuthering Heights. Subsequently when he heard the stories about the ghosts of Heathcliff and Catherine he went to see their graves. It is to the curiosity of Mr. Lockwood that we owe the whole story of Wuthering Heights.

Leave a Comment