First published in 1859, Adam Bede is set in the rural farming community of Hayslope fifty years earlier. The plot centers on four characters and the entangling relationships amongst them. Adam Bede is a well-respected young carpenter who is in love with the pretty Hetty Sorrel. Hetty in turn is in love with the rich Arthur Donithorne who returns her feelings but has no honorable intentions. Dinah Morris, Hetty's cousin and a Methodist preacher, is introduced early on and becomes a pivotal character near the end of the novel.