Chatterton lives as a lodger in a wealthy home. Unable to live by his writing, he has to look for a job to support himself. Unfortunately, he can only get a job as a servant. The other aspect of the situation is his thwarted and concealed love for Jenny Clark (Kitty Bell in Vigny's play), the wife of the industrialist who is his landlord. Finally, faced with an impossible love and a menial job, a despairing Chatterton kills himself. He is followed immediately in death by Jenny.