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|Evidence for long engagement, not marrying while poor
Written by Tracy W
(9/26/2005 5:25 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, long engagement?, penned by Margaret H
There is also, however, some textual evidence. In Chapter 4, Lady Russell thinks of the engagement in this way:
So Lady Russell starts thinking about the evils of the marriage, and then corrects herself and worries about the evils of a long engagement. Anne will not be snatched off right away, she will be stuck, presumably at Kellynch, waiting anxiously for Wentworth to make his fortune.
Later, in Chapter 4, when Anne thinks of it, she says to herself She was persuaded, that under every disadvantage of disapprobation at home, and every anxiety attending his profession, all their probable fears, delays and disappointments, she should yet have been a happier woman in maintaining the engagement than she had been in the sacrifice of it; ....
Notice how Anne thinks "maintaining the engagement", not "in being married". And notice the reference to "delays and disappointments" - delays makes sense here in the sense of delaying their marriage. If they were already married and Wentworth off sailing, Anne would have considerable ground for fears and anxiety, but I don't think delays and disappointments would have received equal treatment.
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