Through a sinister plotline and a tempestuous poetic style, Emily Bronte’s character of Heathcliff displays a violent and bitter personality against those who have harmed, degraded, and humiliated him in her literary masterpiece “Wuthering Heights”. Creatively, this art piece portrays a great deal of the tale’s theme of revenge. Through the siren like rose, the tortured hand, and the vengeful spirit of a snake, this piece exhibits the nature of Catherine’s love, Heathcliff’s past, and his vengeful character; all of which directly relate to the theme of a sin called revenge.
Catherine’s beauty and malevolence is signified through the rose. The rose is a flower that symbolizes love, deep passion, and intense magnificence. Like the rose, Catherine was described as attractive and beautiful with ‘a sweetest smile’ and ‘the bonniest eye’; however, Catherine is wicked and selfish. She loves Heathcliff yet she feels marrying him would shame her. Because of this, she marries Edgar Linton despite her love for Heathcliff. The rose’s thorns represent Edgar Linton, as he was part of Heathcliff’s agony. In spite of this, the thorns are also part of Catherine because of her affections for Edgar. The rose puncturing the hand, representative of Heathcliff, depicts Catherine’s cruelty and betrayal of Heathcliff. The rose stabbed through the hand is how Catherine murdered Heathcliff’s heart.
The hand is the image of Heathcliff’s past. Hindley was envious of how his father, Mr. Earnshaw, treated Heathcliff so warmly and disregarded his own children to love Heathcliff even more. Hindley began to abuse Heathcliff and treat him like a servant. When Hindley’s wife began to dislike Heathcliff, Hindley, sensing an opportunity, lashed out and abused Heathcliff even more. Through the art piece this is the hand bleeding, because of the rose. From this perspective, it can be assumed that Hindley has taken the position of the rose. Although the hand is not retaliating against the rose, the phrase “Nemo me impune lacessit”, no one harms me unpunished, foreshadows the steady growth of hatred, loathe and the want for vengeance within Heathcliff, like a snake shedding its skin.
The snake slithering up the arm embodies the spirit of Heathcliff’s...