[[quoteright:300:http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/rebecca1_7041.jpg]]
[[caption-width-right:300:"You're overwrought, madam; I've opened a window for you."]]

->''"Last night I dreamt I went to Manderley again."''
-->-- '''The Second Mrs. de Winter,''' her opening narration from both film and novel.

A 1938 novel by Daphne du Maurier (who also wrote ''Literature/JamaicaInn'', and the story that became ''Film/TheBirds'').

While working in Monte Carlo as the companion for the wealthy Mrs. Van Hopper, our young unnamed heroine meets the much wealthier Maxim de Winter: a moody, inscrutable widower presumed still to be in deep mourning for his late wife, the beautiful Rebecca, tragically drowned in a boating accident. Thus no-one is more surprised than the shy, gauche little companion when Maxim not only seems attracted to her but impetuously proposes they wed there and then.

The first signs of trouble in Paradise appear when they arrive at his elegant old country estate, Manderley. The servants have grown too fond of its late mistress and receive their new one coolly. Mrs. Danvers, the current housekeeper and Rebecca's former handmaid, is especially less than thrilled with the prospect of anyone taking Rebecca's place, and has made something of a fetish of keeping her things exactly as she left them -- stationery in the desk, clothes in the cupboards -- all monogrammed with that bold, decisive initial ''R''.

As the novel progresses the shadow of Rebecca hangs more and more heavily over the house, making it increasingly difficult for our heroine to face the challenges not only of running a great estate but within her marriage -- especially when it's increasingly clear that the two are related. Gradually, with a not-so-subtle assist from Mrs. Danvers, she begins to despair of ever living up to the perfect, proud, beloved Rebecca...

...then they find the remains of a boat...

In 1940, Creator/AlfredHitchcock directed [[TheFilmOfTheBook the film version]], his first American project, which starred Creator/JoanFontaine and Creator/LaurenceOlivier. It received 11 UsefulNotes/{{Academy Award}} nominations, winning for Best Picture and Best Cinematography (Black and White). It was the only Hitchcock film to win Best Picture, and Hitchcock didn't win Best Director--he never did, in fact, and had to settle for a lifetime achievement Oscar late in life.

Other adaptations include a 1938 radio dramatization on Creator/OrsonWelles' ''Campbell Playhouse'', a 1939 stage play, a 1979 miniseries on Creator/TheBBC, a 1983 opera, a 1997 miniseries on Creator/{{ITV}}, and a 2006 stage musical.

----
!!This novel and its adaptations feature examples of:
* AccidentalMurder: In the Hitchcock film, [[spoiler:Maxim accidentally killed Rebecca; he got angry and pushed her, and she fell and struck her head.]] In the original novel, [[spoiler:he shot her, very much on purpose. She rather had it coming, to the point of taunting him into doing it.]]
* TheAce: Rebecca is considered this posthumously, being unnaturally cultured, charming and gifted. [[spoiler: Turns out to have been a BrokenAce, in that she was a cruel manipulative sociopath.]]
* AdaptationalHeroism: Both the Hitchcock film and the musical do this to Maxim by [[spoiler:eliminating his murder of Rebecca, the former by necessity of the Hays Code.]] By extension, this removes the potentially psychotic element from [[spoiler:his wife's decision to help him,]] helping to make her more sympathetic and heroic after TheReveal. The musical in particular portrays her as becoming a confident woman that doesn't take Mrs. Danvers's bullying any longer so that the audience can root for her. She and Maxim [[spoiler: are seen as very happy together and kiss at the end]], which is much clearer than the ambiguous future of their relationship in the novel.
* AdaptationalKarma: In the book, Mrs Danvers escapes Manderly after she burns it to the ground. The film - by order of the Hays Code - shows her dying in the fire.
* AdaptationalVillainy: A consequence of the elimination of [[spoiler:Maxim's murder of Rebecca]] in the Hitchcock film is that Jack Favell's persecution of Maxim is now based completely on a falsehood.
* AffectionateNickname: Both Rebecca and Favell called Mrs Danvers 'Danny' affectionately.
* AlasPoorVillain: Despite her fear of and anger towards Mrs. Danvers, the narrator sympathises with her bitter recollection of the night Rebeeca died: Danvers, who had been away for most of the day, feared something was deathly wrong, and after a sleepless night of paranoia and premonition, rushed alone through Manderley's woods in the dead of night to find and help her beloved mistress, but was far too late. As the truth begins to come out, Danvers grows more and more emotional, gradually viewed less as a tyrant and more as a grieving old woman, who will never forgive herself for what she sees as her own failure. [[spoiler:Nor, of course, does she forgive Maxim when she learns the truth...]]
* AllForNothing: [[spoiler: Maxim put up with Rebecca for ten years before killing her, because she did wonders for Manderley, and divorcing her would have destroyed Manderley and him. A year after her passing, Manderley is burnt to the ground by Mrs Danvers, making all of Maxim's hardships and humiliations meaningless.]]
* AllGirlsWantBadBoys: The second Mrs. de Winter becomes even more passionately in love with Maxim once [[spoiler: he admits that he killed Rebecca. Justified because the second Mrs. de Winter's greatest fear was that Maxim still loved Rebecca. When he confesses to killing her]], it proves that he doesn't and never did. However, the novel repeatedly hints that Maxim is actually rather weak-willed ([[spoiler:as demonstrated by Rebecca's successful SuicideByCop]]).
* AlphaBitch:
** Mrs. Danvers pulls a lot of the tactics, despite being too old to qualify.
** Alice, one of the maids, who sneers at the narrator's modest and plain underwear fits better.
** [[spoiler: Rebecca to the people she was openly nasty to.]]
* AmbiguouslyGay: Mrs. Danvers is coded as a lesbian as blatantly as the censors would allow, what with her caressing Rebecca's minks and lingerie, and talking about how Rebecca would undress in front of her and take a bath.
** Also, Mr Frith the butler and Robert the footman seem pretty close to each other and at one point Favell mocks Robert about his love life in front of the narrator.
* AnimalMotifs: Rebecca, the wild and untamed one, is likened to the horses she trained, whereas our young, submissive heroine is likened to the loyal de Winter dog, Jasper.
* AntagonistTitle: Arguably, since the heroine's main conflict (at first anyway) is that she can't live up to Rebecca's legacy.
* ArchEnemy: Mrs. Danvers to 'Maxim' de Winter and the second Mrs. de Winter.
* AuthorAvatar: The second Mrs. de Winter's original name being "Daphne" implies that she was supposed to be one, though there are articles suggesting that the real author insert is Rebecca (du Maurier, at around the time that she was writing ''Rebecca'', was also writing passionate, if self-loathing-filled, love letters to a straight, married woman; a lot of descriptors she uses for herself in these letters are similar to the descriptions of Rebecca in the novel). Of course, it could be both of them.
* TheBadGuyWins: Discussed throughout the novel, with the narrator always thinking that Rebecca is conquering from beyond the grave. In the end, [[spoiler: Rebecca loses her power to hurt the new couple, but Mrs. Danvers destroys Manderley and causes the bleak ending described in the prologue right when the couple were happy for the first time]].
* BigBad: Mrs. Danvers but really Rebecca.
* BigFancyHouse: Manderley. The prologue to the novel includes PurpleProse describing it and its grounds. It may be based on [[https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:Milton_Hall_Cambs.jpg Milton Hall]], which du Maurier visited as a child, or else [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Menabilly Menabilly]], Du Maurier's home of twenty-six years.
* BitchInSheepsClothing: [[spoiler: The widely adored Rebecca was an utter selfish bitch who was nice to people on their faces but laughed and jeered behind their backs]].
* BittersweetEnding: [[spoiler: Manderley is burnt to the ground by Mrs Danvers, in a sense ensuring Rebecca has one last laugh over Maxim from beyond the grave. But having come clean with each other regarding Rebecca, the framing device suggests that Maxim and the heroine are, if not happy together, then at least content, having overcome Rebecca's shadow and earned something of a happy ending.]]
* BirdsOfAFeather: The heroine and Maxim are this.
* {{Blackmail}}: [[spoiler: Favell attempts to blackmail Maxim with his note from Rebecca, which suggests that Rebecca did not actually commit suicide, implicating Maxim himself]].
* BrickJoke: During one of their early dates, the heroine confesses that she wishes she were thirty-six years old, wearing black satin and white pearls. Maxim makes her promise never to wear pearls or black satin. Later she attempts BeautifulAllAlong - in a black dress with white pearls. Maxim is understandably put-off.
* BrutalHonesty: Beatrice is famous for never sugarcoating her opinions and to tell people face-on she doesn't like them. Fortunately she takes an immediate liking to the second Mrs. de Winter.
* ByronicHero: Maxim de Winter. A reclusive, introverted aristocrat and handsome widower, prone to broodiness and mood swings, and still seeming in the thrall of his late wife. [[spoiler: And is tormented by the knowledge that he is her murderer, living in fear of being exposed each day, isolated from his friends and family by being one of the only few individuals to have seen past his monstrous wife's facade.]]
* CanNotSpitItOut: [[spoiler:The heroine is convinced that she's a complete failure compared to Rebecca, her husband's first (dead) wife, until she finds out that Rebecca was evil and the husband never loved her and murdered her. Which cheers her up immensely.]]
* CharacterTitle
* TheCharmer: Rebecca managed to charm whoever she met.
* CheshireCatGrin: After what happened at the ball, the narrator gets freaked out by Mrs. Danvers, who sports a rather creepy smile.
* ComicallyMissingThePoint: Happens to the narrator when she sees Maxim for what she thinks is the last time at Monte Carlo. He asks her if she wants to go to New York with Mrs. Van Hopper or to Mandelay with him. After [[MyGodYouAreSerious realizing that he's serious]] this exchange follows:
--> "You mean you want a secretary?"
--> [[SincerityMode Maxim]]: "No, you little fool. I'm asking you to marry me."
* CounterpointDuet: "Mrs de Winter Bin Ich!" (Mrs de Winter is me!) is a duet between, as you might have guessed, the new Mrs de Winter and Mrs Danvers. The second Mrs De Winter feels she can't compete with the first and also there's something of a reversal of the dynamic Max and Rebecca had where the marriage is more real and solid but makes a poorer show to most of the wider society around Manderley than the first marriage.
* CreepyHousekeeper: Mrs. Danvers. She is creepy in herself, with a deathlike appearance, and in her devotion to the memory of Rebecca such that she doesn't wash the clothes of Rebecca's scent and goes to her room every day.
* DancesAndBalls: Rebecca and Maxim regularly entertained at Manderley, and another costume ball is held in the second Mrs. de Winter's honour, at the begging of the neighbours who loved the previous ones. It doesn't go well.
* DarkSecret: Rebecca's murder. In theory, only Maxim and the new Mrs. de Winter know the whole story, but Favell guesses it (though he gives up on his guess in the end) and one of the servants and the magistrate also figure out an unspecified amount, leading to a lot of worry about who knows what.
* DeathByAdaptation: [[spoiler: Mrs. Danvers in the film. In the novel she escaped the burning house, but the Hays Code wouldn't allow her to survive. The musical takes this further and shows that this is a suicide]].
* DeathByFallingOver:[[spoiler: Rebecca, in the film version and TheMusical; she stumbled and hit her head. This would be because of the [[MoralGuardians Hays Code]]. In the book, she goads Maxim into shooting her.]]
* DeathGlare: Mrs. Danvers has a frightening one that she likes to shoot at the second Mrs. de Winter
* DepravedBisexual: In the novel Rebecca is hinted to have had male and female lovers while married to Maxim. Mrs. Danvers contends that she loved no man at all.
* TheDiseaseThatShallNotBeNamed: Rebecca was revealed to be dying of [[spoiler:a tumor in her ovaries]], which mean that she [[spoiler:couldn't have children]].
* DragonTheirFeet: Mrs. Danvers was once Rebecca's closest ally and confidant, and [[spoiler:posthumously claims her vengeance by burning down Manderley.]]
* DrivenToSuicide:
** Mrs. Danvers tries to do this to our heroine after the fiasco at the costume party, telling her how worthless and unlike Rebecca she is. This is foiled when they find the boat where Rebecca's SuicideByCop happened.
* DrivingADesk: As unconvincing as usual when Olivier is driving Fontaine around.
* EarnYourHappyEnding: The narrator tries but does maybe not quite manage it; at the very least she and Maxim live in relative peace. It is hinted that ''she'' is satisfied, and her husband is with the woman he loves, despite feeling really bad about the earlier events of the book.
* EeriePaleSkinnedBrunette: Mrs. Danvers is described as being very pale with a deathlike appearance and usually has dark hair (sometimes with grey streaks).
* EvenEvilHasLovedOnes: Mrs. Danvers adored Rebecca, whom she is implied to have raised since childhood, and is [[UndyingLoyalty zealously loyal]] to her late mistress' memory. [[spoiler:Rebecca herself is said to have felt the same way about Danvers, but also kept some very important secrets from her.]]
* EvenEvilHasStandards: Danvers is quite disgusted by Favell's claim that [[spoiler:Rebecca loved him and would have made him her husband,]] and considers the very suggestion an affront to [[spoiler:Rebecca's honour -- she claims Rebecca loved ''no'' man whatsoever.]]
* FaceOfAnAngelMindOfADemon: [[spoiler:The title character is described by everyone as being incredibly beautiful, intelligent, cultured, loving, and basically the perfect wife. The end has Maxim reveal that she was actually a BitchInSheepsClothing, who was excellent at getting people to adore her, and delighted in emotionally tormenting him]].
* FlowerMotifs:
** Roses for the new Mrs de Winter.
** Rhododendrons and azaleas for Rebecca. The rhododendrons are particularly interesting: they are notoriously invasive, with a tendency to crowd out any native plants by depriving them of food and sunlight, ensuring their takeover of large areas. Moreover, they have a reputation (of uncertain validity) for "poisoning the soil," meaning that even once the rhododendron has gone, no other plant can thrive where it used to be. Sound familiar?
** In the musical it's orchids for Rebecca. Mrs. Danvers comments that they may seem dead sometimes but can come to blossom unexpectedly. Interestingly, the new Mrs. de Winter later replaces them with azaleas.
* {{Foil}}: Rebecca, who was a self-centered and ruthless ManipulativeBastard BrainyBrunette, and the heroine, a kind and innocent girl almost always always portrayed with HairOfGoldHeartOfGold.
* ForegoneConclusion: The novel begins some time ''after'' everything has happened, with the de Winters living a grim, inconsequential existence overseas. Or, at least, they have a mundane existence but at least they have each other's company.
* GenreBlind: Mrs Danvers is suddenly being nice to the second Mrs de Winter? Nope, don't find anything suspicious about her behaviour and do as she asks.
* GentlemanSnarker: Maxim gets decidedly snarky at the inquest. Not the cleverest tack to take when the police are suggesting you killed your wife...
* GettingCrapPastTheRadar: Seems to be Jack Favell's main business after blackmail. It's one of the things the narrator dislikes about him.
* GoodAdulteryBadAdultery: [[spoiler:The titular Rebecca was, rather than the lovely and kind-hearted perfect wife her successor assumed her to be, a lying, manipulative, cruel sociopath who cheated on her husband Maxim with a series of lovers- and was not even really in love with them either. Maxim, meanwhile, is shown putting up with this until Rebecca actually ''intentionally provokes him into shooting her'' (because she has cancer and no way of treating it, and is apparently too afraid of committing actual suicide; as well as the fact that this makes him a murderer: her ultimate attack on him). She is, in fact, so awful that the heroine, Maxim's second wife, is ''glad'' he shot Rebecca]]. We also find out that [[spoiler:Rebecca seduced Giles, Maxim's brother-in-law. Giles' wife (Maxim's sister) Beatrice either knows or strongly suspects this and avoids further visits with her brother for that reason. She and Giles still seem to get along well though, and the second wife at one point feels inferior because the two have a "good marriage".]]
* GrandeDame:
** Mrs Van Hopper, who passes over into RichBitch territory.
** Beatrice, who is on the more intelligent and sympathetic end of the scale.
** Lady Crowen, who is rather ridiculous.
** Maxim's grandmother was one before becoming senile.
* HandsomeLech: Favell.
* HappyMarriageCharade:
** Maxim and Rebecca; they are thought to be a glorious couple even by the house servants, and neighbours for miles around speak of them, but their marriage is anything but.
* HauntedHeroine: Figuratively speaking. The second Mrs. de Winter is obsessed with Rebecca, to the point that she ''feels'' like Rebecca is haunting the house, and sometimes imagines her visually. Mrs. Danvers helps things along...
* IAmNotPretty: The second Mrs. de Winter thinks she is bland and childish, but others find her reasonably attractive.
* IAmSong: "I'm an American Woman" (which, aside from the title line, is entirely in German). Also, "Mrs. de Winter bin ich!" ("Mrs. de Winter is me!"), a duet between the heroine and Mrs. Danvers.
** "Sie ergibt sich nicht" ("She's invincible") for Rebecca, sung by Mrs. Danvers.
* IWantSong: "Zeit in einer Flasche" ("Time in a Bottle"), where Mrs. de Winter-to-be wishes for a way to capture the magic of a moment, the reality of a dream, and the miracle of understanding in order to remember her time with Mr. de Winter in Monte Carlo, not knowing that he intends to marry her.
* ImpracticallyFancyOutfit: Played with in the film. The heroine, having just married [[TroubledButCute former widower]] [[IdleRich Maxim]], is desperate to prove herself a ProperLady (and not an InadequateInheritor to the titular [[PosthumousCharacter Rebecca]]). Hoping to [[ErmineCapeEffect appear elegant and tasteful]], she buys a [[PimpedOutDress fancy party dress]] from a fashion magazine... but quickly learns that it's completely out of place for a quiet evening at home, BigFancyHouse and FictionFiveHundred-status be damned.
* InnocentInaccurate: Mrs. de Winter thinks that her husband, Max, is cold with her because he is still in love with his late wife, Rebecca. She feels that she cannot measure up to Rebecca in Max's eyes. The truth turns out to be quite different.
* ItsACostumePartyISwear: The fancy dress ball held in the second Mrs. de Winter's honour. It ''was'' in fact a costume party, but Mrs. Danvers suggested M. de W. II dress up as a certain painting in the house, something Rebecca had done in the past, in order to humiliate her.
* {{Jerkass}}: Favell, who is casually rude, blunt, and lecherous. He even attempts to capitalise on his [[spoiler:cousin's murder]] with {{Blackmail}}. His one saving grace, at least in the novel, is that his accusations against Maxim are [[JerkassHasAPoint completely correct]]. The narrator notes that it is Favell's own obnoxious, graceless behaviour that turns the magistrate against him when he presents his case.
* KarmaHoudini: In the novel, [[spoiler:Maxim gets away with murder, albeit at the cost of Manderley. Danvers abandons the house and very likely sets it ablaze; she is never called to account for it. And despite being murdered, Rebecca got everything she wanted, including the sudden quick death by SuicideByCop, over the painful end promised by terminal cancer.]]
* KissingCousins: Jack Favell and Rebecca, first cousins and lovers alike.
* LargeHam: Mrs. van Hopper as portrayed by Carin Filipčić in the musical.
* LetThePastBurn: Mrs. Danvers goes over the edge and sets Manderley on fire. All that symbolically remains of Rebecca is burned down along with the house. In some adaptations Mrs. Danvers also burns.
* LiteraryNecrophilia: The book got a sequel in Susan Hill's ''Mrs. De Winter''.
* TheLostLenore: Played with. Rebecca ''seems'' to be this to her widowed husband Maxim, [[spoiler: but it turns out that she was an utterly despicable woman whom he later murdered, and his haunted behavior regarding her death was caused by the strain of having to maintain a facade of devoted mourning and the knowledge that he was unable to be good enough for his innocent young second wife because of this.]] On the other hand, Rebecca ''is'' this trope in lesbian fashion to her one time nanny and later housekeeper Mrs. Danvers.
* MayDecemberRomance: Downplayed. Maxim is a widower in his late forties when he marries the heroine, who is in her early twenties. Deconstructed slightly in that as much as they love one another, and even without the spectre of Rebecca haunting them, there is a lot of insecurity on both sides due to the age gap: Maxim occasionally wonders whether he is too old to relate to her, and if she would have been better of with someone her age, while the heroine is resentful of being treated like a daughter or a child, and feels inferior to Maxim due to her relative youth and naiveté.
* MeaningfulName: Rebecca means "a snare" or "captivating".
* MementoMacGuffin: Manderley.
* {{Motif}}: The big flourished R of Rebecca's name, as written by the woman herself, appears and is described several times and used to bring out her character. In the musical, this is translated to the main poster, which is a flaming R and the shadow of a face.
* MyGreatestFailure: Mrs. Danvers blames -- and will never forgive -- herself for not being there to save Rebecca on the night of her death.
* NamelessNarrative: The central character is never named. Her very namelessness is a defining aspect of her character.
* NiceToTheWaiter: The protagonist is very polite to waiters and assorted serving staff, but they are not nice to her. The personnel in the hotel at Monte Carlo were rude and unhelpful and from the Manderley staff only Clarice makes her feel welcome and comfortable.
* TheNicknamer: Rebecca seemed to have been one. She called Mrs. Danvers Danny and Maxim Max. Maxim does not seem to care much for the nickname, at least after her death when it reminds him of her. The narrator thinks this means she was close with Mrs. Danvers and Maxim, and wishes that she could use Max herself.
* NoEnding: Played with. The novel ends very abruptly with "And the ashes blew towards us with the salt wind from the sea," and gives no description of what happens next or even details of the fire. However, the ending has already been written [[ForegoneConclusion in the form of the prologue]], which takes place some time later.
* NoNameGiven: The second Mrs. de Winter. She mentions that her name is unusual, and people rarely spell it correctly, but doesn't tell what it is. In earlier drafts of the novel, her name was [[AuthorAvatar Daphne]]. A bit unusual, and, back in the days before ''Franchise/ScoobyDoo'', easy to misspell. In TheMusical, she's just know as "Ich" ("I").
%%* NothingIsScarier
* OminousFog: Manderley is often shrouded in it, making the place all the more creepy.
* OnlySaneWoman: The second Mrs. de Winter becomes this, as everyone around her slowly starts to lose it.
* OrangeBlueContrast: A very blatant example in the form of the musical's poster, which is a massive flaming R with a big flourish on a strong blue background.
* ThePerfectCrime: Subverted at the inquest, when the boat's builder explodes the theory that the boat went down accidentally.
* PosthumousCharacter: Rebecca. When the story opens, she has been dead for a year already but even in her absence, her presence is inescapable, as her memory casts its shadow over the entire story.
* PresentAbsence: Rebecca is dead, yet she influences everything and everyone around her.
* PrettyInMink: Mrs. Danvers proudly showing the furs Maxim brought Rebecca.
* PrimAndProperBun: Mrs. Danvers in the film.
* PsychoLesbian: Mrs. Danvers, though in the film version, this was put only in subtext. In the musical, she [[spoiler:dies ''wearing Rebecca's nightgown'', which she has never washed since Rebecca wore it last]].
* PsychoSupporter: Mrs. Danvers.
* RavenHairIvorySkin: Rebecca is described as having had a cloud of dark hair and very white skin. Frank also describes her as the most beautiful creature he had seen.
* RedemptionEqualsAffliction: Downplayed in the 1997 version; Maxim saves the life of Mrs. Danvers at the cost of slight scarring and a limp.
* ReplacementGoldfish: The main source of tension. The second Mrs. de Winter spends most of the book failing to live up to the memory of Rebecca, her husband's first wife, who had drowned accidentally. She is explicitly told, often, that she doesn't measure up, by Mrs. Danvers, Rebecca's personal maid. The second Mrs. de Winter becomes more and more desperate in her attempts to live up to Rebecca's memory, because Mrs. Danvers has her convinced that that is what Maxim, her husband, wants. Just when the second Mrs. De Winter (she is never given a first name, and the book is a first person narrative) is near a breakdown, and Mrs. Danvers suggests that she throw herself out of a window, it is revealed that [[spoiler: Maxim never really loved Rebecca, and in fact, came to hate her, because she was cruel, cold, manipulative, and unfaithful. Not only that, she had taunted him one night until he murdered her, by telling him she was pregnant with another man's child, which she intended that he would support.]] It doesn't end there, and [[spoiler: Maxim is vindicated,]] so they can go on with their lives together.
* RichBitch:
** Mrs. Van Hopper is relentlessly unpleasant.
** [[spoiler: Rebecca, as it turns out.]]
* RomanticizedAbuse: (verbal) Maxim calls the heroine "fool" and "idiot" pretty frequently.
* SanitySlippageSong: The second reprise of "Rebecca".
* SaveTheVillain: In the 1997 TV series, Maxim runs upstairs to save Mrs. Danvers from the fire.
* SecondLove: The heroine for Maxim, although he grew to hate Rebecca and she never loved him; their marriage was a [[HappyMarriageCharade charade]].
* SecondaryCharacterTitle: The protagonist is the second Mrs. de Winter (whose first name is never given). Rebecca herself is a PosthumousCharacter.
* SheCleansUpNicely: The second Mrs. de Winter attempts this twice. The first time she dresses up to look like a woman on a magazine hoping to impress her husband, at which he's a little alarmed. The second time backfires horribly when she is tricked into dressing up as Rebecca for the costume ball.
* ShrinkingViolet: The second Mrs. de Winter is meek and shy, which allows Mrs. Danvers to intimidate her.
* SidekickSong: "Die lieben Verwandten" ("Beloved relatives"), sung by Beatrice and Giles, with the second Mrs. de Winter joining in at the end.
* SmugSnake: Jack Favell, especially as played by George Sanders, is one of the smuggest snakes in media history.
* SuicideByCop: Rebecca manipulated Maxim into shooting her after learning she had cancer by pretending to be pregnant with another man's child. Because of the production code, this is amended in the film and musical versions to Rebecca dying in a convenient fall just as Maxim was ready and willing to pull the trigger.
* SuicideDare: The CreepyHousekeeper Mrs Danvers very seriously encourages the second Mrs de Winter to commit suicide. That was because she was passionately devoted to the ''first'' Mrs de Winter and felt the successor was taking her place. She is not impolite or emotional when she does it, which makes it all the more scary.
* SympatheticMurderBackstory: Maxim murdered Rebecca. But she was a horrible person, and she manipulated him into doing it.
* TableSpace: In the film, the table isn't quite as oversized as some examples, but they do sit on opposite ends.
* TakeOurWordForIt: Several characters mention how attractive and charming Rebecca was in life, but she never appears onscreen (or in the text of the novel).
* TallDarkAndHandsome: Described to the first Mrs. de Winter:
-->''"Tall, slim, dark, very handsome?" said Colonel Julyan quietly.''
* ThanatosGambit: See Suicide by Cop.
* TriumphantReprise: "Hilf mir durch die Nacht" ("Help Me Through the Night") is a DistantDuet with Maxim and wife unable to get through the demons at Manderley. It is reprised triumphantly in "Jenseits der Nacht" ("Beyond the Night"), where they are together and happy at last.
* UndyingLoyalty: Frank to the de Winters.
* TheUnfairSex: [[spoiler:Massive subversion; Rebecca was a sociopathic bitch who cheated on Maxim with a series of lovers, and wasn't even loyal to them either. Our young heroine, who had earlier aspired to be just like her predecessor, is glad that she's dead.]]
* UnknownCharacter:
** The main character is the second wife of the eponymous Rebecca's husband. She's compared unfavorably to Rebecca without ever being told anything about her by his staff. Nothing is revealed abut her as they figure she doesn't need to know, except that she died. In the end the protagonist learns more about Rebecca and [[spoiler:gains the respect of the inhabitants by saving them from a fire]].
** In the film adaptation, [[spoiler:the housekeeper, Mrs. Danvers, refuses to accept her and stays behind to die in the fire.]]
* UnreliableNarrator: The second Mrs. de Winter describes herself as plain, a bit foolish, and makes out she's not very emotionally strong. Other characters regularly comment on her prettiness, and she is clearly both intelligent and emotionally strong underneath her shyness.
* UpperClassTwit: The second Mrs. de Winter finds herself surrounded by these.
* VillainousBreakdown: Mrs. Danvers has a mild one in all versions, but the musical takes the cake when she [[spoiler:puts on Rebecca's nightgown and walks through Manderley in a daze, lighting the place on fire as she goes.]]
* VillainousIncest: Rebecca and Jack.
* VillainWithGoodPublicity: Rebecca
* VillainSong: "Rebecca" and its two reprises, sung by Mrs. Danvers when showing the second Mrs. de Winter Rebecca's room, when trying to make her commit suicide and when she learns [[spoiler: Rebecca had cancer, where this becomes a SanitySlippageSong.]] Also "Eine hand wäscht die and're Hand" ("One hand washes the other") for Jack Favell, crossing over to SidekickSong territory as he explains his extortionist philosophy.
* WhamLine: [[spoiler: Maxim's "I ''hated'' her!".]]
* WomanInWhite: Both Mrs. de Winters dress up as one for the fancy dress ball.
* WrongGenreSavvy: The second Mrs. de Winter keeps imagining herself as the heroine of a conventional romance novel, instead of a gothic romance.

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