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|I've always been under the impression that
Written by Anselm
(9/24/2009 6:32 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Chapter 24: Is Lucy serious re: the Norland living?, penned by kathleen (elder)
Lucy will do anything to get her hands on the money to which Edward is heir. If this is true (and who could doubt it?), I think that she would marry Edward whenever that eventually became certain, either before Mrs Ferrars' death if she could be made to approve the match, or after it, once Edward became heir.
However, I'm a little confused by the text regarding the subject raised by your message header. In Ch.24 Lucy is obviously trying out Elinor. After Nancy's interruption, Lucy thrice begins a subject after a little pause, during which she is quite obviously deciding what the best way to proceed would be. But what could be the end toward which she is proceeding the first time? The Norland living would be a pittance compared to what Edward (i.e. they) would inherit on Mrs Ferrars' death. So why introduce it?
(In this context a note in the Cambridge edition is of interest. It states that Mrs Ferrars' London house in Park-street is "one of the most exclusive and expensive addresses in Mayfair, certainly the most rarified London address in any of JA's novels". Edward's inheritance would certainly be substantial.)
The purposes of her second and third tries are much more obvious. She wants to see if Elinor will encourage her to give up the engagement, thus confirming her in Lucy's own mind as a rival, and if the Dashwood girls are to be in her way in London for the "season" (i.e. midwinter).
Then again, I never was much of a one for second-guessing hidden motives, so at this point....HELP!
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