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Emily Grierson is the titular character of the short story "A Rose for Emily" by the author William Faulkner. She represented old society meeting with the new society.

Rose for Emily

She was a senile, mean old woman who was considered a moral obligation to the fictional town of Yoknapatawpho County. She was a wealthy woman who owned a Black slave and who still seemed convinced that she was living in the old world and the old government. For rexample, she avoids paying her taxes still believing that she had no taxes in Jefferson. She still firmly believed this even when her financial representative died. However, this isn't how Emily was really like.

When she was younger, her father would put rules and regulations over her, and ran her life. However, she still loved her old man, and convinced herself that he was still alive and kept his body in her house for three days. When the undertakers came and tried to advise her to give them the body, she broke down and gave it to them after those three days. This left a huge impact on her.

To the town's surprise, Emily fell in love with Homer Barron, a Northern laborer with a dark complexion, and they assumed that she would marry him. However, much to her displeasure, Homer was more interested in other men than committment. Emily then went to the store to buy arsenic but she didn't tell the clerk what she would use it for. After this, no one saw Barron again nor did they see that much from Miss Grierson. It should be noted later on that most of the denizens of the town complained of a wretched smell from Emily's residence. They assumed that her servant probably killed a rat or any other pest.

Emily soon became sick, and eventually died and her funeral service was set up. After the body was buried, most of the men went through her former house and eventually came upon one door that was locked. After much effort, the door was broken open, and the townspeople discovered Homer's corpse on the bed with a fresh dent in on one of the pillows. They also noticed a long strand of gray hair on the pillow that belonged to the deceased Emily, thus leading to the implication that she had sex with the corpse.