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Written by JulieW
(2/16/2004 5:34 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, This may sound vague really, penned by Vania
If you can remember which of the ladies it concerned it might help;-)
The only one I thought it might be -as the highest "ranking" lady -was Elizabeth Parker when she married Robert parker,but as this was in 1751, it was before the 1753 Actcame into force( 1754)and wouldnt really apply as the rules were so diffrent before Hardwicke's Act came into force.
I think JA was trying again to make a comic point of Mrs Bennet's ignorance.
The artisocracy liked the retained Special licences because the granting of one( and it was not automatic- investigations were made as to the suitability of granting a license)excluded them from the rules that bound the common herd,that was-the need to obtain the reading of banns( and therby publicising the forthcoming wedding)before the marraige took place.
Hardwicke wanted marraiges to be publicised and above board,but realsied that his bill would not suceed through the House of Lords if he alienated teh aristocracy.The debates regarding the Bill in the House of Lords make fascinating reading.
As the Bennet family,in particular Mrs Bennet, would be incapable of keeeping the forthcoming wedding quiet,there wa absoutley no point in obtaining such a license,was there?
The joke is again on Mrs Bennet.She wants something that would be expensive and counter productive really to her interests-as it would delay the marraige.And nothing in the world would stop her bragging about it- defeating the private nature of a special license.
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