The New Magdalen (1912) - Plot Summary Poster


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  • Mercy Merrick, released from prison, goes to the Rev. Mr. Gray at the mission for assistance. He sends her to the French consul. The latter aids the girl just released from jail by sending her to France as an army nurse. Horace Holmcroft goes to the continent as a war correspondent. His mother in her loneliness writes to Grace Roseberry, an artist struggling in France, to come and live with her. Grace accepts the invitation. On her way she gets caught in the battle lines and takes refuge in a hospital in which Mercy is acting as a nurse. In a burst of confidence Mercy tells Grace of her prison record. Grace is struck by a shell and apparently killed; in fact, one surgeon says she is dead. Mercy takes from the bag of Grace her passport and the letter from Mrs. Holmcroft inviting her to visit her and sets out for the home of the latter. Young Holmcroft, who has met her at the hospital, keeps her company. Mrs. Holmcroft receives Mercy with open arms. The young woman wins the affection of Horace, he proposes and is accepted. Grace, at first thought to be dead, recovers through an operation and resumes her journey. When she arrives at Mrs. Holmcroft's she is spurned as an impostor. Grace goes to the Rev. Mr. Gray, who calls on Mrs. Holmcroft. He recognizes Mercy. The girl, however, insists that she is the one she pretends to be. The clergyman is not insistent. Grace again appeals to Mr. Gray. Mercy, suffering the tortures imposed by a guilty conscience, also visits Mr. Gray. Later, in a strong scene, when a policeman is taking from the Holmcroft home the victim of Mercy's pretensions, the impostor breaks down and confesses. Mercy returns to the mission, where the clergyman advises with her and consoles her.


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