But if it was the end of things for Kitty Teresa, it was not, as they had imagined it would be, entirely so for Henry and Bridget. When plans were made, it was put to them that they might continue their occupancy of the gate-lodge as caretakers of the larger house, that for the time being at least the herd would be made over to them to give them a continuing livelihood. "You’ll do better with the creamery cheque," Heloise estimated, "than with what wages we could afford. We think that fair." Only passing time, the Captain added, could settle all this confusion.

I think in the part in bold Heloise is talking about how to pay the wages of their workers and she said it is better to give them cheque and this wages is better than wages they had paid before?

Or can we say "creamery cheque" means: the workers of creamery factory? but it seems odd to me.

Source: The Story Of Lucy Gault By William Trevor

1 Answer 1


Up to the time of the conversation, Henry and Bridget had been occupying the gatehouse outside the larger house, and acting as caretakers of the latter. They had been paid wages for doing the job. For some reason the owner of the house could no longer afford to pay them these wages. It was suggested ("put") to them that they could continue to occupy the gatehouse and take care of the big house. Instead of receiving wages as before, they would be given use of the herd of cows. They could sell milk, cheese, butter, etc, to the creamery (a dairy product company) and receive a cheque for these. This would be their "livelihood" (source of income). They would receive more money from this arrangement than their employer could afford to pay them.

  • I think the cows are to be (in effect) lent to H&B; only their usufruct, for the time being, is given to them. Dec 14, 2020 at 9:17
  • Most dictionaries give the meaning of "make over" as "legally transfer ownership", "officially make someone else owner of something", although Lexico is more guarded ("transfer the possession of something"). I don't think it is clear which meaning is desired, but I have gone with what I believe is the most usual. Dec 14, 2020 at 9:22
  • 1
    “for the time being” works against a full transfer of ownership. Dec 14, 2020 at 9:31

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