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|Mr Knightlye's words
Written by Nikki N
(3/10/2011 10:43 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Your Censure may be Praise, penned by Robbin
"However IMO Mr. Knightley was not mean to say Harriet is illegitimate, ignorant and she is the child of nobody knows who because it is the truth. The poor consequences he predicted would come of Emma and Harriet’s friendship has also come true, especially the changes in Harriet"
Moreover, his words to Emma that were demeaning to Harriet were only spoken in his anger after Emma provoked it by saying that Robert Martin was not Harriet's equal --
'"Not Harriet's equal!" exclaimed Mr. Knightley loudly and warmly; and with calmer asperity, added, a few moments afterwards, "No, he is not her equal indeed, for he is as much her superior in sense as in situation. Emma, your infatuation about that girl blinds you. What are Harriet Smith's claims, either of birth, nature or education, to any connection higher than Robert Martin? She is the natural daughter of nobody knows whom, with probably no settled provision at all, and certainly no respectable relations".
Before he knew that Emma had persuaded Harriet to refuse Robert, he had been speaking quite well of her --
'He began speaking of Harriet, and speaking of her with more voluntary praise than Emma had ever heard before.
"I cannot rate her beauty as you do," said he; "but she is a pretty little creature, and I am inclined to think very well of her disposition. Her character depends upon those she is with; but in good hands she will turn out a valuable woman."'
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