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|Wentworth on Anne's Worth
Written by JanELT
(10/21/2008 2:16 p.m.)
(1) CW saw Anne's beauty once again when Mr Elliot gawked at her at the Cobb. He'd been suppressing his attraction to her up to this point, and I would argue, for the previous 8 years.
Ch 12: "It was evident that the gentleman (completely a gentleman in manner) admired her exceedingly. Captain Wentworth looked round at her instantly in a way which shewed his noticing of it. He gave her a momentary glance, a glance of brightness, which seemed to say, "That man is struck with you, and even I, at this moment, see something like Anne Elliot again."
(2) CW realized that even he himself was expecting Anne to come up with a solution in Louisa's accident.
Ch 12: "Anne, Anne," cried Charles, "what is to be done next? What, in heaven's name, is to be done next?" Captain Wentworth's eyes were also turned towards her.
(2) CW was affected by Anne keeping her cool when Louisa was injured, leading to his declaring publicly his trusting her, and only her!
Ch 12: "But as to the rest, as to the others, If one stays to assist Mrs. Harville, I think it need be only one. Mrs. Charles Musgrove will, of course, wish to get back to her children; but if Anne will stay, no one so proper, so capable as Anne."
(3) CW was angry that once again he was overridden when it came to matters involving Anne. He had thought that everyone agreed with him that Anne must stay to nurse Louisa in Lyme, but after he'd gone to get the carriage, they decided, without his input, to send Anne home to Uppercross instead. This switch must've brought back memories of the time when he thought they'd settled their engagement, only to find LR overriding his proposal to Anne.
Ch 12: "...his evident surprise and vexation at the substitution of one sister for the other, the change of his countenance, the astonishment, the expressions begun and suppressed, with which Charles was listened to, made but a mortifying reception of Anne; or must at least convince her that she was valued only as she could be useful to Louisa."
At this point, I would like to disagree with Anne. I don't think that CW thought "she was valued only as she could be useful to Louisa." It was more than that as we shall see below.
(4) CW missed Anne after she had left Lyme and Uppercross, and his kind words of her to his sister hinted that he'd valued her more than just as a nurse to Louisa. He'd been thinking of her. And having to deliver the two notes from Lyme (which I don't think he'd written himself - otherwise she would've recognized his handwriting) made him think of her even more. Interestingly, he had left the notes with the Crofts, rather than deliver them himself. I think that's because he knew that Anne was with LR.
Ch 13: "...that Captain Wentworth had been in Kellynch yesterday (the first time since the accident), had brought Anne the last note, which she had not been able to trace the exact steps of, had staid a few hours, and then returned again to Lyme, and without any present intention of quitting it any more. He had enquired after her, she found, particularly; had expressed his hope of Miss Elliot's not being the worse for her exertions, and had spoken of those exertions as great.
Here I would like to add that IMHO Anne was still in love with CW, considering what was on her mind upon hearing Mrs Croft. "This was handsome, and gave her more pleasure than almost any thing else could have done."
(5) CW was reminded of Anne's charms, undoubtedly, when CB complimented her incessantly at the Harville's. I say this based on circumstantial evidence. The Harville's house was small, and in close quarters, one could hear one another well. Also, CB did not talk to Henrietta in private, since Charles heard it too. I'm thinking that if Charles heard it, so did CW. And from my reading, I assumed that it was later that CW disappeared from Lyme.
Ch 14, Charles speaking: "...but, however, it is a very clear thing that he [CB] admires you [Anne] exceedingly. His head is full of some books that he is reading upon your recommendation, and he wants to talk to you about them; he has found out something or other in one of them which he thinks...I overheard him telling Henrietta all about it; and then "Miss Elliot" was spoken of in the highest terms! Now Mary, I declare it was so, I heard it myself, and you were in the other room. 'Elegance, sweetness, beauty.' Oh! there was no end of Miss Elliot's charms."
(6) CW knew he was not in love with Louisa. Adding up all his thoughts of Anne this week, I can see that his affections were directed toward Anne.
If he was really courting Louisa, he wouldn't have left her side at all.
Ch 18: "But even then there was something odd in their way of going on. Instead of staying at Lyme, he went off to Plymouth, and then he went off to see Edward. When we came back from Minehead he was gone down to Edward's, and there he has been ever since. We have seen nothing of him since November. Even Sophy could not understand it.
And according to Adm Croft, he wasn't at all unhappy that Louisa was to marry CB.
Ch 18: "Not at all, not at all: there is not an oath or a murmur from beginning to end.... He does not give the least fling at Benwick; does not so much as say, 'I wonder at it. I have a reason of my own for wondering at it.' No, you would not guess, from his way of writing, that he had ever thought of this Miss (what's her name?) for himself. He very handsomely hopes they will be happy together; and there is nothing very unforgiving in that, I think."
That's all I found. Anything I missed?
What bothered me was what Adm Croft said of CW in Ch 18: "No, no; Frederick is not a man to whine and complain; he has too much spirit for that."
Doesn't it seem more dangerous for CW to keep it all in, to let the anger simmer beneath the surface? If he'd whined and complained, perhaps he wouldn't have been so calculatingly cold toward Anne, esp. at the Musgroves'? Maybe Adm Croft didn't know CW well enough. Maybe CW had confided some of his angst to his good friend Harville? Or even to his brother Edward with whom he'd spent several months when he went into hiding :-)
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