- Dec 2018
Chapter 9 Synopsis: Diana, Susan, and Arthur Parker, three out of four of Mr. Parker’s siblings, come to visit Sanditon. Diana announces their unexpected arrival by visiting the Parkers and Charlotte at Trafalgar House. There, she discusses the details of her journey: Susan completed the trip without a problem until they reached the town, while Arthur has lumbago. Diana then discusses the new arrivals that will soon come to Sanditon, a family of West Indians with an ill niece and Camberwell Seminary, a school of girls. Diana also believes that those who can be useful should do what they may to help those who cannot. When Mr. Parker invites the trio to dinner, Diana declines his offer, explaining their strange eating habits.
Chapter 8 Synopsis: As Lady Denham and Charlotte continue their walk, they see Sir Edward. He expresses his hatred for circulating libraries, claiming they contain no helpful lessons. When Charlotte asks what sorts of novels he enjoys, he waxes poetic about novels that “display human nature with grandeur” and ignite passion in the reader, such as the works of Samuel Richardson. Sir Edward’s desire is to be as seductive as the villains in his favorite novels. He intends to seduce Clara since she is his rival in terms of Lady Denham’s fortune. Since she shows no signs of being interested in him, his backup plan is to kidnap her; however, he hopes it won’t come to that as he doesn’t want to spend the money necessary for such an adventure.
A cow or other domestic mammal kept for its milk.
"Affected with a wasting disease, especially pulmonary tuberculosis." A dated term.
fancy themselves equal
Highlights the slight strife between "old" and "new" money. Lady Denham's words seem reminiscent of Sir Walter Elliot's disdain for those who made their fortune instead of inheriting it in Persuasion.
most perfect representation
Here, Charlotte displays similarities to Catherine of Northanger Abbey, who views the world through the lens of the novels she's read.
having her distress
Camilla (1796) by Frances Burney, a popular romanticist novel. In Camilla, the titular character has many misadventures concerning love and relationships. This reference could either be a funny nod or light foreshadowing. Source).
some immediate purchases
Libraries also contained "expensive merchandise." Source.
only without distinction
In the 19th century, libraries were popular places for wealthy people to socialize. The fact that the library doesn't yet have better connections on its list seems disappointing for Mr. Parker.
The idea of the "sublime" was a major concept in Romanticism (and was also associated with grandeur). It was defined by many essayists as "an expression of great spirit," something that "excites the ideas of pain and spirit." Christian Hirshfield (1742-1792) identified it as "physical grandeur transformed into spiritual grandeur." Source).
that masterly style
Austen pokes fun at this character once again -- he is too cheap to put the maximum effort into pretending to be a Byronic hero.
knew his business
In these two paragraphs, Sir Edward thinks himself a “Byronic hero” of sorts—albeit an early one, as the poems that cemented the trope were published between 1812 and 1818. The Byronic hero was known for many dark traits, as well as sophistication, education, and the power of seduction, which Sir Edward supposes himself to possess. The Byronic hero was in part inspired by the villains of Ann Radcliffe’s gothic novels. Source.
Reminiscent of Henry Crawford's desire to make Fanny Price fall in love with him in Mansfield Park.
Possible reference to Richard Lovelace (1617 - 1657), a cavalier poet. He was born into a family of soldiers and politicians and was described as “much admired and adored by the female sex.” He also wrote heavily on relationships, love, and the military. Source.
Pretty ironic, considering he was railing on other novels earlier in the chapter for having "discordant principles."
always more anxious
Here, we are presented another form of a "fan" in Jane Austen's literature -- the crazy fanboy. Sir Edward is somewhat similar to Catherine in Northanger Abbey, but a whole lot creepier.
perversity of judgement
Jane Austen directly makes fun of Sir Edward for modelling his behavior after male characters like that of Richardson's.
Specifically Samuel Richardson, the author of epistolary novels Pamela and Clarissa. Pamela was the really weird novel in which landowner Mr. B makes several unwanted advances towards 15-year-old Pamela, who marries him at the end. This is an unfortunate influence. Source.
impugn the sense
Sir Edward's passionate praise of the Romantic novel is reminiscent of Marianne's dramatic speeches in Sense and Sensibility. This is slightly ironic considering that Edward's earlier rejection of the novel in favor of works that can be used to better oneself falls more under Sense than Sensibility.
Relating to or dependent on charity; charitable.
The act of making something better; improvement.
The mere trash
Many people criticized circulating libraries in the 17th and 18th centuries due to the genre they gave access to--the novel. It was thought that the novel would ruin people's minds and give them false expectations of life. Source.
- henry crawford
- other austen
- sir walter elliot
- sir edward denham
- sense and sensibility
- lady denham
- charlotte heywood
- northanger abbey
- fanny price
- social commentary
- marianne dashwood
- mansfield park