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|Willoughby resolved to undervalue Brandon's merits
Written by Barbara
(9/25/2006 2:28 p.m.)
First of all, does it strike anyone else as odd that, when Willoughby apparently has no use for Brandon at all, that he and Marianne would be sitting around talking about him like they are at the end of Ch. 10?
I have a book-length critical study of S&S by Isobel Armstrong, and in it she suggests that comments of Willoughby's such as "has more money than he can spend" smack of jealousy on Willoughby's part. I had always thought the same, but Armstrong also connects this comment to jealousy over Brandon's wealth: "Perhaps his observations [of the East Indies] may have extended to the existence of nabobs, gold mohrs, and palanquins." Armstrong says that this hints that Brandon became wealthy by his service in India. I confess I never had that supposition myself. Did anyone else think or assume so?
I always thought he was just good at managing the estate and its income. However, if it's true as Mrs. Jennings says in Ch. 14 that "his brother left everything sadly involved" maybe that was not enough actual capital to rescue the estate, even if, as she also says, "he is a very prudent man, and to be sure must have cleared the estate by this time."
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