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Written by Robbin
(10/18/2009 1:30 a.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Willougby and Edward, penned by Bridget D
I never suggested Willoughby went to Cleveland to molest the Miss Dashwoods so please clear me of this negative (too negative if you like) assertion. Anselm responded to my post (Post 41545, Grand Gesture) and said:
Nevertheless, that he made the attempt at all surely says something for him. The only possible way in which a completely adverse construction could be put on his ride is Robbin's suggestion that he expected to find two unprotected women at Cleveland.
But this doesn't ring true to me. A 12-hour ride across England to get to two women, one of whom is (to the best of his knowledge) dying, and the other of whom has no feelings for him whatsoever - what would be the point? What's he aiming to do - seduce Elinor? Rape Marianne on her deathbed? (Post 41605, Willoughby v Wickham by Anselm)
You agreed with Anselm:
“I really cna't believe that Austen intended us to see him as riding all the way down the country for improper purposes with one or other of them.” (Post 41662, Willoughby's journey to Elinor by Bridget D)
I agree it makes no sense for Willoughby to ride from London to Cleveland to seduce Elinor and rape Marianne on her death bed but as far as I know you two are the only people who spoke of this. If you would read my post (41545) you would see I did not say anything resembling seduce Elinor and rape Marianne on her death bed. Obviously, however, I did not make my opinion clear. I will try again. I think Willoughby would like them to be unprotected so he can work his charm on one or both to gain forgiveness, to gain their good opinion. Something I think he has little chance of accomplishing if Mr. Palmer is at home and I think Willoughby is savvy enough to know this. If Mr. Palmer won’t let him in the front door then Willoughby has no chance to work his charm on Elinor. If Mr. Palmer stands guard over Elinor in the extremely unlikely event that he did let him in I think it would put a big damper on what Willoughby could get away with. I think Willoughby’s history with unprotected girls shows he knows the advantages of the situation.
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