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|Emma, half-gentlemen and vulgarity
Written by Nikki N
(2/18/2011 12:08 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Emma's double standard, penned by Kathleen Glancy
-- her remarks on the Cox sisters, whose brother Emma dismissed back in Chapter 16 as a possible husband for Harriet, though only in soliloquy, with "Oh! no, I could not endure William Cox -- a pert young lawyer." (How Harriet could endure young Mr Cox is clearly irrelevant).
So Emma wants to match Harriet with someone whom she, Emma would like to associate with -- as she used to like Mr Elton, but not consider good enough as a husband for herself.
Emma felt she could not associate with Robert Martin because he was a gentleman-farmer who rents (not owns) a farm. Could RM be considered one of the half-gentlemen?
Emma did not like young Cox, because she finds him to be "a pert young lawyer". Is he a half-gentleman -- he is a lawyer, but I suppose he was a solicitor belonging to what was known as the "junior branch" of the legal profession, and not a barrister belonging to the "senior" branch like Mr John Knightley.
Emma considers the two Miss Coxes as vulgar girls and agreed either would like to marry RM -- but since they are from a lawyer's family who could meet Emma at everning parties -- they are definitely not a vulgar farmer's daughter whom Emma once told Harriet RM would most likely marry!
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