The Wife Of Martin Guerre

This essay has a total of 471 words and 2 pages.

The Wife Of Martin Guerre


Arnaud du Tilh, a rogue and an impostor, deserved punishment for his crimes, and that is
what he received. Arnaud, a man once thought by people to be unmistakably Martin Guerre,
was sentenced to death. Perhaps in this day an age, a punishment such as this would be
excessively severe, however in Arnaud's time it was considered just. A question can be
asked whether Martin Guerre deserves such a punishment as well, because of his actions.
Martin Guerre never broke any laws like that of Arnaud du Tilh, however in a moral sense,
Martin's actions were down at Arnaud's level, perhaps even lower.

Martin Guerre was the spitting image of his father. Before he left the farm, everyone that
knew him was confident in him taking over his father's position as head and protector of
the family. As Bertrande once said when they both were young, 'In his day he will make a
protector for this family as like his own father as two men may well be, and for that
thanks to God'; (28). Consequently, him leaving the farm and not returning for years was
quite unexpected. Whether he planned to return in 8 days like he said or not is
irrelevant, he still abandoned everything, and that is inexcusable. His left his wife
Bertrande, causing her great pain and endless wondering whether he still was alive. In a
quote from the narrator, 'He had deserted her in the full beauty of her youth, in the
height of her great passion, he had shamed her and wounded her…'; (34).

Martin also deserted his young son, Sanxi. The child barely knew him when he left, and
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