Parson Tringham discovers that John Durbeyfield is the lineal descendant of the ancient and knightly family of the D'Urbervilles. Tess, his eldest daughter, has inherited all, the weakness and passions of her ancestors. Durbeyfield abandons himself to a life of ease and indolence, and to advance their financial prospects, Tess is sent to claim relationship with the rich and powerful D'Urbervilles of the adjacent county. Tess encounters Alec D'Urberville, who deceives her, and in humiliation she returns home, where her child is born. The child eventually dies, and Tess makes a determined struggle to reclaim her ruined life. She meets Angel Clare; the two fall in love, and once more her future begins to promise happiness. After their marriage. Angel tells Tess of a former fall from grace, and Tess promptly forgives him and relates her indiscretion with Alec D'Urberville. Shocked by the revelation, Angel leaves her until he can bring himself to forgive her. Destitute, Tess is again found...
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