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|How long has Mr. Collins been in Hunsford?
Written by Line
(5/10/2007 6:20 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Rumors of Beauty (chapters 13 and 14), penned by Robbin
In his letter in ch.14, Mr. Collins mentions that he was ordained at Easter (March or April), and that it is now October 15. I don't know how soon after his ordination Lady Catherine offered him the job, but the longest he can have been at Hunsford is not quite seven months. I think it's quite likely that the Bennets are the first relatives he's visited since moving to Hunsford, but that doesn't mean he couldn't have gone visiting before that.
As for his source(s) of information about the Bennet girls, I agree they were probably mutual relatives or acquaintances. Just because JA didn't mention them by name or even by relationship, doesn't mean they don't exist. In P&P, several people are mentioned just once in passing. I think JA expected her readers to infer that her characters had a considerably wider social circle than the ones mentioned by name.
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