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|Many cunning tricks and a great deal of noise
Written by Barbara
(9/5/2009 2:18 a.m.)
...such attractions as are by no means unusual in children of two or three years old: and imperfect articulation, an earnest desire of having his own way, many cunning tricks, and a great deal of noise
Having a son who has just passed this age myself, I think it is such a spot on observation about children.
As we read through the novel, there are other descriptions of small children and how they act. It's hard to tell though, sometimes, whether the view of children and their behaviour is more realistic, more cynical, or both.
Jane Austen definitely had some close observation of young children though. At the time she was first writing S&S, her niece Anna, aged about 3, was staying at Steventon with the Austen family following the sudden death of her mother (wife of Jane's brother James), so she had a toddler around every day.
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