Douglas Horton once said, "While seeking revenge, dig two graves - one for yourself." Revenge is only satisfying for a short period of time. When the joy of watching suffering fades away, the humane guilt settles under the skin. In the books "Wuthering Heights", "The Scarlet Letter", and "The Count of Monte Cristo" characters are all enraged and begin to dig their enemy's grave. In the process, a grave is also dug for themselves.
The gravedigger in "Wuthering Heights" was a man known as Heathcliff. He had a strong affection for a woman named Catherine, but he was not the right type of man. He did not have the wealth or family equivalent of Edward. This enraged Heathcliff because he had a deep, passionate love for Catherine that was denied. Heathcliff's life after this abandonment drove his desire to get even with Edgar. From this moment forward, he derailed a hopeful life that would never get back on track. (Serafimov 2) While he ran away from Withering Heights, he formulated his revenge. Heathcliff even states, "I'm trying to settle how I shall pay Hindley back. I don't care how long I wait, if I can only do it at last. I hope he will not die before I do!" (Brontë) He then took advantage of Hindley's gambling to steal the manor. He used Linton to marry young Catherine and steal the rights to Thrushcross Grange. All of these actions were driven to get even for his lost love. Toward the end of the novel, he has completed his revenge, but he remains unsettled. Revenge was a temporary solution. He loses pleasure from the revenge and in the process his grave is dug for the life he wasted away.
Chillingworth's wife Hester committed adultery. She broke the commitment of their marriage and had a child named Pearl. This fueled the fire to find the man who helped accomplish this crime. He lost all interest in caring for his wife and now focused on destroying Pearl's father.