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|how short a "shelf life"...
Written by Kalyn
(9/24/2005 9:58 p.m.)
How little time or how few "seasons" (whether in London or otherwise) a woman had before becoming unmarriageable! I'm dwelling on this again after re-reading LR's reaction to Charles Musgrove's proposal, a mere three years after the broken engagement with Captain W: "...however LR might have asked yet for something more, while Anne was nineteen, she would have rejoiced to see her at twenty-two, so respectably removed from...her father's house, and settled so permanently near herself." In three brief years, LR has gone from envisioning an amazing alliance for Anne to wishing for a respectable one that doesn't take her out of the neighborhood. This new attitude doesn't mean LR would have approved of Wentworth at this stage--not unless he had made his fortune, at any rate. It's also a theme in other books as well--just look at Lydia's comments on Jane and being an old maid in PP(words that surely echoed in her worried mother's brain). Elizabeth in P seems to be the twenty-nine year-old exception, but this is more due to her social position than anything else, I think--and even she no longer enjoys reading the Baronetage because she is in the "years of danger."
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