Literapedia Book Notes for

Wuthering Heights by Emily Brontë


  • Lockwood (ch 1)—a new tenant at Thrushcross Grange.
  • Heathcliff (ch 1)—the master of Wuthering Heights.
  • Joseph (ch 1)—Heathcliff’s servant.
  • Catherine Linton Heathcliff (ch 2)—Heathcliff’s daughter-in-law.
  • Hareton Earnshaw (ch 2)—an unschooled youth.
  • Zillah (ch 2)—the stout housekeeper of Wuthering Heights.
  • Ellen “Nelly” Dean (ch 4)—the housekeeper of Thrushcross Grange.
  • Mr. Earnshaw (ch 4)—the old master of Wuthering Heights.
  • Hindley Earnshaw (ch 4)—old Mr. Earnshaw’s son and heir.
  • Catherine Earnshaw (ch 4)—old Mr. Earnshaw’s wild daughter.
  • Francis (ch 6)—Hindley’s wife.
  • Mr. & Mrs. Linton (ch 6)—description.
  • Edgar (ch 6)—the Linton’s son.
  • Isabella (ch 6)—the Linton’s daughter.
  • Kenneth (ch 8)—the local doctor.
  • Catherine Linton (ch 16)—Catherine and Edgar’s daughter.
  • Linton Heathcliff (ch 17)—Isabella and Heathcliff’s son.

Chapter Summaries

  1. Lockwood, the new tenant at Thrushcross Grange, starts his narration; visits Wuthering Heights; and meets Heathcliff and Joseph.
  2. Lockwood again visits Wuthering Heights, where he is trapped by a snowstorm, and he meets Catherine, Hareton Earnshaw, and Zillah.
  3. When spending the night in a strange room in Wuthering Heights, Lockwood reads some books previously owned by Catherine Earnshaw Linton. He sees her ghost in a dream, awakens and upsets Heathcliff, and leaves the next morning.
  4. Back at Thrushcross Grange, Lockwood entreats Ellen “Nelly” Dean to tell him the story of the families. Nelly tells of the origin of Heathcliff and the story of how Heathcliff took Hindley’s colt.
  5. Mr. Earnshaw becomes sick, and Hindley is sent to college. Heathcliff and Catherine become close and console each other upon the death of her father.
  6. Hindley returns from the funeral with a wife, Frances. Heathcliff is made a servant but still plays with Catherine on the moors. On an adventure to Thrushcross Grange, Catherine hurts her ankle and stays with the Lintons and their children, Edgar and Isabella.
  7. Catherine returns on Christmas Eve as a lady, and Heathcliff feels estranged. On Christmas Heathcliff fights with Edgar Linton, who was visiting with Isabella.
  8. Hareton Earnshaw is born, and Frances dies. Three years later Edgar visits, and Catherine rages at both him and Heathcliff. Edgar and Catherine become lovers.
  9. Hindley returns drunk, Edgar flees the house, and Heathcliff accidentally saves Hareton’s life. Catherine tells Ellen she will marry Edgar, Ellen talks about bad love, and Cathy reveals her dream of being cast out of heaven. Heathcliff runs away. Three years later, Catherine marries Edgar and leaves Hareton and Wuthering Heights. (Nelly ends the story for the night, and Lockwood begins to feel sick.)
  10. (Lockwood has been sick for four weeks.) Heathcliff returns after an absence of three years, moves into Wuthering Heights, and installs himself into Catherine and Edgar Linton’s household. Isabella reveals her love for Heathcliff to Catherine, who passes the information along to Heathcliff.
  11. Ellen approaches Wuthering Heights and meets Hareton. Heathcliff begins wooing Isabella. Edgar Linton strikes Heathcliff, and Catherine feigns illness.
  12. Catherine passes into delirium and dreams of her childhood. Edgar becomes reconciled to Catherine, who becomes sicker. Isabella runs away with Heathcliff.
  13. Catherine, now revealed to be with child, becomes well enough to come downstairs. Ellen receives a letter from Isabella Linton Heathcliff, who relates her first evening at Wuthering Heights as Heathcliff’s bride.
  14. Ellen goes to Wuthering Heights and learns first-hand of the horrors of Isabella’s marriage to Heathcliff. Heathcliff persuades Ellen to take a message from him to Catherine.
  15. While Edgar is at church, Heathcliff steals into Catherine’s room, and the pair talks of Catherine’s impending death. Edgar returns, and Heathcliff promises to wait outside of the window.
  16. Young Cathy is born, and Catherine Earnshaw dies. Heathcliff puts a lock of his own hair in Catherine’s locket, and Ellen places a lock of Edgar’s hair with it. Catherine is buried by the moor.
  17. Soon after Catherine’s funeral, Isabella escapes from Wuthering Heights after Heathcliff fights with Hindley, and she takes a house south of London. Isabella has a child, Linton Heathcliff. Hindley dies six months after Catherine, and Heathcliff takes over Wuthering Heights and young Hareton.
  18. Twelve years pass, and Cathy grows to be an inquisitive little girl. While Edgar is away at Isabella’s deathbed, Cathy wanders to Wuthering Heights and meets her cousin, Hareton. Cathy insults Hareton by calling him a servant before Ellen takes her home.
  19. Fourteen year-old Linton arrives at Thrushcross Grange. Joseph tries to take Linton to Wuthering Heights, but Edgar puts him off until the morning.
  20. Ellen drops Linton off at Wuthering Heights. Heathcliff verbalizes his plans for his son to be his heir.
  21. Edgar explains to Cathy that Linton must go to his father, but Edgar does not say where the father lives. Cathy turns sixteen and meets Heathcliff on the moor. Cathy becomes reacquainted with Linton, but upon her return to Thrushcross Grange, she is forbidden to see him. Cathy starts a correspondence with Linton, and after discovering it, Ellen burns the letters but does not tell Edgar.
  22. Months pass and Edgar becomes sick. While walking on the Moor with Ellen, Cathy becomes trapped behind a gate and meets Heathcliff, who tells her that Linton is literally dying to see her. Cathy resolves to see Linton.
  23. Cathy goes to see Linton, and somehow he charms her with his tantrums. Ellen becomes sick, and when Cathy isn’t nursing Ellen or Edgar, she visits Linton at Wuthering Heights.
  24. Ellen learns of Cathy’s visits to Wuthering Heights. Cathy tells of her discussion with Linton about the best way to spend a summer’s day and of the fight between Hareton and Linton. Ellen betrays Cathy’s confidence to Edgar, and the romance is forbidden again.
  25. (An interruption in the narrative shows Ellen’s wish that Lockwood fall in love with Cathy.) His health failing, Edgar begins correspondence with Linton and gradually approves of him, allowing Cathy to see him on the moors.
  26. Cathy and Ellen go to meet Linton, who is weak and afraid of his father. Cathy promises to meet him a week later.
  27. Cathy meets Linton on the moors, and she follows him to Wuthering Heights, where Heathcliff imprisons her and has her promise to marry Linton. Nelly is locked up for five nights and four days.
  28. Nelly is freed by Zillah. Unable to free Catherine, who is now Linton’s wife, Nelly returns to Thrushcross Grange. Catherine eventually sees her father before his death.
  29. The evening after the funeral, Heathcliff comes to fetch Cathy. While she is packing, he tells Nelly of his desire to be joined with Catherine in death.
  30. Nelly relates to Lockwood what she heard from Zillah about the goings on in the Heights. Linton sickens and dies soon after Cathy comes to the house. Hareton attempts to befriend Cathy, but she scorns him.
  31. Lockwood goes to Wuthering Heights and witnesses a fight between Hareton and Cathy. Lockwood tells Heathcliff he will be leaving for London soon and won’t be coming back.
  32. A number of months later, Lockwood returns to the area and pays a visit to Wuthering Heights, where Nelly now resides. Nelly tells of how Cathy and Hareton were reconciled and have become friends.
  33. Cathy makes her friendship with Hareton known to Heathcliff. Later, Heathcliff confesses a change in his character to Nelly.
  34. Nelly describes the strange circumstances of Heathcliff’s death and burial. Upon the approach of Cathy and Hareton, who are now engaged, Lockwood leaves Wuthering Heights.

Book Note Creator

Hal Waller, instructor