Henrik Ibsen


Henrik Ibsen

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Ghosts Act III Act Summary & Analysis

Act III Summary

Some time later, Helen rushes off to urge Oswald to stop fighting the fire and return home.

As Manders, Jacob, and Regina discuss the possible origins of the fire, Jacob claims to have seen the pastor with a candle at the prayer meeting. The pastor confesses to Jacob that the orphanage was not insured and worries about what the newspapers will say about his part in causing the fire.

Helen returns without Oswald and urges Manders to take control of the orphanage moving forward. When Manders mentions using the interest of the money in the bank that was dedicated to the orphanage for another cause, Jacob offers the idea of his sailors’ inn and promises to take the blame for the fire to save the pastor’s reputation. Manders and Jacob exit.

Oswald returns from the fire. Helen sits him and Regina down and tells them the truth about her husband and their connection as half-siblings. Immediately, Regina leaves: She is unwilling to care for Oswald and can no longer benefit from her connection to him.

Helen and Oswald sit and wait for the sunrise. As they wait, Oswald slowly shares with his mother his wish to die by assisted suicide when his condition grows worse.

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