No one knew where wandering men had their homes or their origin; and how was a man to be explained unless you at least knew somebody who knew his father and mother?

Category: Daily Life | Type: Discussion | Title: Silas Marner (in Context) | Author: George Eliot | Vol: PART ONE | Ch: CHAPTER I

There were no compulsory identity papers. Eliot shows in Adam Bede and here how the locals regard a town thirty miles away as a foreign country. Apart from the stranger's clothes and accent, which likely indicated his or her class, the villagers could know nothing about a stranger. He could be a criminal or a pregant, unmarried young woman who might become a financial burden on the parish. Why else would a person leave his or her home parish?

A harrowing episode in Jane Eyre depicts Jane's flight from Rochester's house and the suspicions of those from whom she seeks help. 

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