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The Hound of the Baskervilles – Women of the 18th Century Essay

The Hound of the Baskervilles is the tale of a mythical beast which is said to haunt the Baskerville family. The story centers around Dr. Watson, who is sent out by Sherlock Holmes to the Baskerville manor to uncover clues. Throughout the story, Arthur Conan Doyle depicts the dominant male figure of the 18th century, in which evil and wicked men were able to manipulate women.

They were often used as tools to assist in their evil ploys or for sex, and were treated poorly and unequally. At the opening of this novel we meet Dr. Watson and Sherlock Holmes, whom has an unexpected visitor by the name of Dr. Mortimer, who introduces the detectives to a puzzling mystery of Baskerville Hall. Apparently Sir Charles Baskerville, owner of the Baskerville home, has recently died and left behind a manuscript. It tells of his father, Sir Hugo Baskerville, who had supposedly fallen in love with the daughter of a yeoman. Yet she was not interested in him, so Hugo along with a few of his wretched companions, kidnapped and placed her in the upper chamber of his house. When she escaped, Hugo swore that “that very night would render his body and soul to the Powers of Evil if he might overtake the wench. therefore showing the extreme disrespect of men towards women.

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As the story progresses, we meet Stapleton, an avid butterfly collector and seemingly cheerful man, who resides near the moor along with his beautiful sister. We later learn that he is actually a direct heir of the Baskerville Manor, as his appearance is strikingly similar to that of Sir Hugo Baskerville’s. He is really a wolf in sheep’s clothing, seemingly harmless, but actually evil and bloodthirsty, stopping at nothing to achieve his goal of claiming the Baskerville fortune.

In an attempt to murder Sir Charles, Stapleton pretends to be a single, lonely man, falling in love with Mrs. Laura Lyons, a friend of Sir Charles. He therefore acquires complete influence over Lyons, who is at his beck and call, and therefore lures out Sir Charles to be killed by an enormous hound, although this was completely unknown to Lyons, showing that men were seemingly hiding things from women. After this had been discovered, Sherlock Holmes and Watson set out to kill the hound that was to be released upon Sir Henry Baskerville. They were able to kill the beast and then set out to the Stapleton home in an attempt to find Stapleton.

They did not find Stapleton, but instead they were amazed at what they found instead. It was Stapleton’s sister, tied up to a pole in the middle of the room and bound with cloth. Dr. Watson depicts men’s savagery and brutality towards woman in which “As her beautiful head fell upon her chest I saw the clear read weal of whiplash across her neck” She explains how she is actually Stapleton’s wife and had been used for Stapleton’s evil deeds. We can see this in which she says ” But now I know that in this also I have been his dupe and tool” where she has been used and abused.

Throughout this story, not all men are as manipulative or lustful towards women as Stapleton or Sir Hugo Baskerville, but similarly men did not fully respect or treat women as their equals. Women of the eighteen-century were expected to be housewives, having no social status unless she was married to a man. They did not have rights and were many of the time a man’s personal tools, whether it was sexual desire or as an alternate route to gain the things in which he wanted. Throughout “The Hound of the Baskervilles” Conan Doyle has managed to depict that many women were treated poorly and unfairly by men.

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The Hound of the Baskervilles - Women of the 18th Century Essay
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The Hound of the Baskervilles is the tale of a mythical beast which is said to haunt the Baskerville family. The story centers around Dr. Watson, who is sent out by Sherlock Holmes to the Baskerville manor to uncover clues. Throughout the story, Arthur Conan Doyle depicts the dominant male figure of the 18th century, in which evil and wicked men were able to manipulate women. They were often used as tools to assist in their evil ploys or for sex, and were treated poorly and unequally. At the
2018-04-29 18:53:04
The Hound of the Baskervilles - Women of the 18th Century Essay
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