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|One private reason
Written by Myretta
(1/26/2010 11:26 a.m.)
I have been so kindly pressed to stay longer here, in consequence of an offer of Henry's to take me back some time in September, that, not being able to detail all my objections to such a plan, I have felt myself obliged to give Edward and Elizabeth one private reason for my wishing to be at home in July. They feel the strength of it and say no more, and one can rely on their secrecy. After this I hope we shall not be disappointed of our friend's visit; my honour as well as my affection will be concerned in it.
The notes in the Le Faye edition of the letters speculate that the desire to be home in July was the expected visit of Catherine & Althea Bigg to Southampton. And the private nature may be a reference to Harris Bigg-Wither's brief and unsuccessful courtship of JA in 1802. She may have felt that to stay on at Godmersham would look like a deliberate attempt to avoid meeting his sisters. However, there is no confirmation of this elsewhere.
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