The Canterville Ghost Chapter 7 Summary and Questions/Answers

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In this post, you will get a short summary of The Canterville Ghost Chapter 7 “The Garden of Death” as well as questions and their answers related to Chapter 4. The Canterville Ghost is a novel written by Oscar Wilde, who is famous for his witty and humorous tone in his writings as well as surprise endings.

The Canterville Ghost
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The Canterville Ghost Chapter 7 The Garden of Death summary: Sir Simon’s funeral takes place four days later. At eleven o’clock in the evening, an impressive procession leaves Canterville Chase. Eight black horses pull the hearse, each with a large tuft of ostrich plumes on its head. Over the lead coffin is a rich purple cover with the Canterville coat of arms embroidered in gold. On either side of the hearse and carriages, servants carrying lit torches walk.

Lord Canterville, the chief mourner, has travelled from Wales to attend the funeral and is seated in the first carriage with Virginia. In the second carriage, Mr and Mrs Otis ride, while Washington, Cecil, and the twins ride in the third. In the last carriage, Mrs Umney brings up the rear. The service is read by Rev. Augustus Dampier in a mostly ceremonial and impressive manner in a deep grave dug in the corner of the churchyard under the old yew tree.

At the end of the service, the servants extinguish their torches, as is customary in the Canterville household. Virginia steps forward as the coffin is about to be lowered into the grave and places a cross made of pink and white almond blossoms on it. The moon emerges from behind a cloud, bathing the scene in silver light, and a nightingale begins to sing in the distance as she does so. As she recalls the ghost’s wistful description of the Garden of Death, Virginia’s eyes become dim with tears, and she can hardly speak a word on the drive back to Canterville Chase.

The next morning, Mr Otis tries his hardest to persuade Lord Canterville to accept the jewels that the ghost had given Virginia. He conveys his daughter’s request that the old casket is kept as a memento of Sir Simon’s death. In response to the assertion that the ornaments should be counted as heirlooms, Lord Canterville points out that objects can only be counted as heirlooms if they are mentioned in a will or other legal document. Lo Canterville also reminds Mr Otis that he had purchased the house as well as the ghost and that anything that belonged to the ghost now belonged to him. Lord Canterville tells Mr Otis that he and his family are indebted to Virginia for her great courage in helping the ghost find peace, at last, joking that the ghost will surely come to haunt him if he were heartless enough to take the jewels away from Virginia. In response to Mr Otis’s reservations, Lord Canterville suggests that Virginia will appreciate having such lovely ornaments to wear when she reaches adulthood.

In the spring of 1890, Virginia is presented in the Queen’s first drawing-room on the occasion of her marriage to Cecil, the Duke of Cheshire. Virginia wears the jewels gifted by the late Sir Simon the ghost, and they are universally admired. Everyone is charmed by the young couple and delighted at the match, except the old Marchioness of Dumbleton, who had thrown three expensive dinner parties in the hope that the young duke would fancy one of her seven daughters. Mr Otis, too, had reservations about his daughter marrying into a world of pleasure-seeking aristocracy; however, his concerns were dispelled, and he was a proud father as he walked his daughter down the aisle on her wedding day.

The Duke and Duchess of Cheshire return to Canterville Chase after their honeymoon. The following day, they pay a late afternoon visit to the churchyard, where the Duchess places some lovely roses on Sir Simon’s grave. They spend some time at the graveside before entering the ruined abbey’s chancel. The Duchess takes a seat on a fallen pillar, while her husband relaxes at her feet on the grass. Virginia is asked to tell him what happened after she went along with the ghost. Virginia asks Cecil not to inquire about what happened that day because she has never told anyone about it. Virginia says she will always be grateful to Sir Simon for teaching her about life and death, as well as how love can overcome both.

Canterville Ghost Chapter 7 questions and answers

COMPREHENSION

1. Describe in detail the funeral service arranged for Sir Simon, the ghost.

Answer: Sir Simon de Canterville’s funeral rites were grand, impressive, and traditional. At about eleven o’clock in the evening, a funeral procession began from Canterville Chase. The bier was pulled by eight black horses, each with a tuft of ostrich plumes on its head, and the coffin was draped in a rich purple pall with the embroidered Canterville coat-of-arms. The servants walked alongside the hearse, holding lighted torches. Lord Canterville was the chief mourner at the funeral. He’d travelled all the way from Wales for the occasion. In the first carriage, he and Virginia sat. Mr Otis and his wife rode in the second carriage. Washington and the three boys rode in the third carriage, while Mrs Umney rode in the last carriage. Because she had put up with him for fifty years, she had been granted permission to attend his funeral. Sir Simon de Canterville’s skeleton was laid to rest in a special grave dug beneath an old yew tree. Sir Simon de Canterville’s last rites were read by Rev. Augustus Dampier.

2. As for my daughter, she is merely a child and has as yet, I am glad to say, but little interest in such appurtenances of idle luxury.

a. Who speaks these lines to whom? Why?
b. What does he refer to when he says appurtenances of idle luxury?
c. What more does the speaker share with Lord Canterville to justify the fact that the jewels should be regarded as heirlooms?

Answer:  a. These were the words spoken by Mr Otis to Lord Canterville. He said this because he wanted to return Lord Canterville’s jewel casket.

b. Mr Otis refers to Virginia’s lack of interest in luxury when he says “appurtenances of idle luxury.”

c. Mr Otis told Lord Canterville that the jewels should be treated as heirlooms rather than just another piece of Lord Canterville’s property that had been returned to him.

3. What reasons does Lord Canterville give to convince Mr Otis that he cannot accept the jewels? What does this tell you about Lord Canterville’s character? Does it add to or support the idea y~u had of him earlier on?

Answer: Mr Otis was told by Lord Canterville that he could not accept the jewels because they were given to Virginia by the ghost and she had to keep them because she had performed a great service to the Canterville family. He was also concerned that if he took the jewels, the ghost would return to haunt him. According to Lord Canterville, the jewels cannot be considered heirlooms because they are not mentioned in any will or legal document, and no family member was aware of their existence. He also stated that Mr Otis purchased both the furniture and the ghost, so whatever the ghost left behind should be Mr Otis’s.

This demonstrates Lord Canterville’s meticulous attention to detail. He wasn’t materialistic or greedy, and he was honest.

4. Who were the two people who had misgivings about the match between Virginia and the Duke of Cheshire? What were their individual reasons?

Answer: The match between Virginia and the Duke of Cheshire was frowned upon by the Old Marchioness of Dumbleton and Mr Otis.

The match was not approved by the Old Marchioness of Dumbleton, who wanted the duke to marry one of her seven unmarried daughters. Mr Otis was also opposed to the match because he disliked titles.

INTERPRETATION

1. What does the author refer to by the phrase the reward of aI/good little American girls?

Answer: By using the phrase “the reward for all good American girls,” Wilde is jokingly alluding to the then-common practice of wealthy Americans marrying into British noble families and thus acquiring a royal title.

2. He made me see what Life is, and what Death signifies, and why Love is stronger than both.

a. What does Virginia mean by this?
b. How does Virginia view Sir Simon the ghost? Justify your answer with details.

Answer: a. Virginia claims that her encounter with the ghost taught her that love is the most powerful force on the planet. The Canterville Ghost showed her what life was all about and what death meant.

b. Virginia sees the ghost as someone who has taught her about life and death. She was aware that he was evil, but she also recognised that he had matured. She knew what he was going through and was able to help him find peace and eternal sleep. She was sympathetic to the ghost, viewing him as a sad old man trapped in death.

Get notes of the other chapters of The Canterville Ghost by Oscar Wilde


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