Is it just me, or is Chapter 2 anti-climatic?
Written by Laraine
(1/25/2006 11:49 a.m.)
After all the big stuff (heehee) that happened in Chapter 1, this seems rather a large let down in the pace of the story.
But there are some new elements that became part of the Gothic repertoire:
The uncovering of noble parentage in someone who has already proved himself to be worthy and virtuous and decidedly heroic
We already talked a little bit about Isabella taking sanctuary in the convent. The priest (or abbess, if a woman) then intercedes for the heroine with the villain--to little or no avail, of course.
The faithful female servant. While many Gothic heroines are poor orphans without a soul to act as confidant, others have an attendant who is supertitious and even more frightened than they. Bianca was the model for all of them. One version of the female servant that doesn't appear in Otranto is the one who is loyal to the villain and cruel to the heroine.
Finally, in at least half of the Gothic novels from this era that I have read, the heroine overhears the hero singing or playing either a lute or a pipe. It's always a melancholy tune. The sun is usually rising or setting (a setting sun is more melancholy, so it's more common). The hero is nearly always imprisoned somewhere at this point.