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|Lies, Lies, Lies wk5 (Very Long)
Written by Tarn
(2/26/2011 3:00 p.m.)
Chapter 29: Plenty of specious argument, but no lies.
Chapter 30: "you won't easily find one in a thousand who considers virtue to be its own reward(Ovid,Ex Ponto II.III:11-12) and I think Mr Knightley (and possibly Mr Woodhouse, too) is more distressed by the prize fine dancing might gain for Frank Churchill, than indifferent. Mr Knightley's confession "I never look at it - I do not know who does" is contradicted by his past conversation with Miss Bates "Oh! very delightful indeed; I can say nothing less, for I suppose Miss Woodhouse and Mr Frank Churchill are hearing everything that passes And ... I do not see why Miss Fairfax should not be mentioned too. I think Miss Fairfax dances very well"
Chapter 31: No lies, although Emma's feelings towards Frank as she returns to her drawing (a likeness? Of Frank?) are contradictory - one moment "she could not yet imagine he had any fault" the next she reflects "I do not altogether build upon his steadiness or constancy - his feelings are warm, but I can imagine them rather changeable. -Every consideration of the subject, in short, makes me thankful that my happiness is not more deeply involved.".
Frank is not without his own contradictions. His letters have improved - "no suspicious flourishes now of apology or concern; it was the language of real feeling towards Mrs Weston" and improved still more by the inclusion of her own name, in all cases but the last adorned by a "broad wreath of gallantry.".
Chapter 32: Except for her gown, Mr Elton's bride shares his lack of elegance and self-aggrandizing lies. "Just what he deserves" in Harriet's blind but illuminating opinon.
Chapter 33: Mrs Elton appears as good as her word in this chapter - excepting her determination to hold "musical parties to draw out [Jane's] talents", each one of her intended actions appears to have been implemented to the combined knowledge of Emma, Mrs Weston and Mr Knightley (and there is no proof that Mrs Elton hasn't held musical parties). Why Jane should agree to it is not well explained, I think - Mrs Weston's idea that Jane tires of Miss Bates company seems as little likely as the idea that she (Mrs Weston) tired of Mr Woodhouse, and thereby accepted Mr Weston.
Chapter 34: Jane Fairfax claims she "reached home before the rain was too much"
When it comes to alternative letter-gathers, Mrs Elton claims she cannot remember the name of "The man who fetches our letters every morning". If she could, she would lose the opportunity to use the plural form to refer to her male staff and with it the ability to imply they are too numerous to individuate, but when Jane mentions her grandmother's servant there is no amnesia:-"so much as Patty has to do!". I cannot believe her.
Chapter 35: Mrs Elton clamors for compliments on her finery and her taste for simplicity."I have...quite a horror of finery...I have some notion of putting such a trimming as this to my white and silver poplin."
Mr Weston, coming as he does from London, could have given the party some very interesting public news to share but the dispatches we hear of have the joyous (for some) news that at the end of next week Frank Churchill will be in town. According to The Morning Chronicle of Thursday, April 7, 1814: "Reports were in circulation of Bonaparte having been made prisoner, of Marmont having declared for Louis XVIII and of two Deputies having arrived from the French Senate on a mission to Louis XVIII.", and Thursdays dispatches to the War Department brought the news that the Allied Army had taken Paris on the 30th of March.
Chapter 36: Mrs Elton is taken at her word in her unflattering pretense "Selina is no fine lady.". This narrowly escapes being a lie even though it is a statement uttered to another person and believed to be false, because she had not expected Mr Weston to be deceived by it. I can understand her nicety in taking sheets with her, and Mrs Churchill's haste on the road, after reading this post of Julie W's on the conditions of coaching inns.
Mr Weston continues to be skeptical of Mrs Churchill's claims to ill health, and her other claims:- "Her pride is arrogance and insolence!... she was nobody when he married her, barely the daughter of a gentleman ...she is an upstart", while he continues to claim of himself that "I would not speak ill of her" and "I would not say so to every body, Mrs Elton, but I have not much faith in Mrs Churchill's illness"
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