Silas Marner

Silas Marner

Book - 1971
Average Rating:
Rate this:
Publisher: London : Everyman's Library, c1971
ISBN: 9780460001212
Branch Call Number: FIC Eliot
Characteristics: xxi, 214 p


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment
Jun 23, 2020

Way back during my high school years, this book was frequently selected for English Lit courses, probably Grade 10 or thereabouts; I missed out on it then and I'm glad I did, because I doubt very much if I would have appreciated it at the time. Eliot's moralizing, the extreme vernacular and the stilted sentence structure that modern day readers will find awkward would surely have rendered it hard going for students then. I wonder if it could be taught today.
Now that I've got all that out of the way, I can declare: This is a beautiful book. When you come to the end, it's bound to leave you with a warm feeling of satisfaction. It was certain to appeal to me today because it features two of my most beloved themes: rebirth and redemption. And in Marner her protagonist, Eliot has created one of the most intriguing characters in literature. Along the way, she paints an astonishing picture of an agrarian village in pre-industrial England, complete with its cast of odd characters as they go about their lives in an early 19th century environment that had totally disappeared by the time Eliot set about depicting it; a remarkable feat. She even manages to sprinkle a good deal of humor into the story,taking full advantage of her characters' eccentricities.
So, this is what it's supposed to be: a museum piece, frozen in its own time, expressed in difficult language, encumbered with dollops of Eliot's personal philosophy; and despite all of that, her characters and her message of love, empathy, self-respect and hope shines gloriously through.

Oct 09, 2015

Such a wonderful novel about love, providence, and reaping what you sow. An excellent book that you should definitely read when you get the chance. The story is beautifully told, with wonderful, profound treasures throughout and Elliot's (in reality, Mary Ann Evans's) own musings about life's lessons. Although the prose is rather heavy in the first few chapters and definitely takes some getting used to, once you break the barrier of backstory and seeming monotany, the book will go by in a breeze. Something to read over and over again. A true classic.

Cdnbookworm Feb 11, 2013

So the book was first published in 1861, but is set in a time earlier in the 1800s. Silas has had a rude awakening about human nature and friendship and moved to Raveloe as a result. He leads a solitary life, concentrating on amassing money for money`s sake, spending little on himself and not interacting with his neighbours. When his fortune is stolen, he is devastated, and appeals to the community in a panic for help. It is this that first gets his neighbours taking an interest in him. When another set of circumstances lead to a small child being orphaned on Silas` doorstep, he finds himself compelled to take her in and make her a loving home. This move brings him further into the community and we see how it is this action that drives the community opinion of him.
The leading family in Raveloe is the Cass family, and while the oldest son Godfrey is a good-natured man, generally well-meaning, the second son Dunstan is one who would sell him own mother, if she wasn`t already dead. Dunstan has drawn Godfrey into an ill-conceived relationship and is now using that as a hold over him. But he is always on the lookout for opportunities for money, and this leads him to criminal actions and bad outcomes.
The action takes place in two time periods, one with the plot threads described above and another sixteen years later, when we see the results of these actions. There is definitely a morality tale aspect to the plot, but the characters are what really bring the book to life. I really enjoyed it.

Agent13 Aug 20, 2012

A classic that deals with themes of redemption, religion and which values are meaningful to one's life. What is remarkable about this book is that its protangonist is someone I did not initially like. Ms. Eliot does show us the good in Marner eventually. It is a short read written in a style that is inviting to any reader.

Age Suitability

Add Age Suitability
Oct 09, 2015

Love_Legolas_111 thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


Add a Summary
FavouriteFiction Sep 30, 2009

A lonely miser finds and infant girl on his doorstep and adopts her.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number



Find it at SMPL

To Top