Posted by Laraine on September 02, 1997 at 11:48:25:
In reply to help! puzzled by word puzzle in word puzzles posted by greg on September 01, 1997 at 14:12:33
]... "mr. knightley connected it with the dream; but how it could all be, was beyond his comprehension. how the delicacy, the discretion of his favourite could have been so lain asleep. he feared there must be some decided involvement."...
] he suspects some involvement - "intelligence" - between jf and fc. but whom is he referring to in "his favourite..."? mr. k's favourite: emma? fc's favourite: emma? or is it even mr. k's favourite: jf??? surely there's some irony afoot: e.g., that fc's favourite is ACTUALLY JF. but it's "beyond MY comprehension" too. any takers?
Hi Greg! I interpret the sentence this way:
1) "Blunder" tells Knightley that the letter Frank received was from Jane. One utterly unbreakable rule in this society was that unmarried ladies did not correspond with unmarried gentleman (that is send letters back and forth--a single note was perhaps permissible in extreme circumstances) unless they were engaged.
2) Jane has been doing one of two unpardonable things: she's either been corresponding with someone to whom she is not engaged or she's been secretly engaged. Either one is a breach of protocol that must shock Knightley.
3) "Favourite" refers to Jane as Knightley's favourite, but I don't think the word in this use exactly means "one whom I like/love best" as much as it means "someone on whom I have bestowed favor and done right by bestowing it". Knightley has singled Jane out as someone for whom he has admiration. ("any body may know how highly I think of her"). And here she is breaking rules in a most unsatisfactory fashion. What she's doing (whether she's engaged or not) is much worse than anything he's berated Emma for doing, and he's been fairly stern with Emma.
4) One of the things that's getting at Knightley is that he's already unhappy about (what he sees as) the negative influence Frank is having on Emma. Now Jane's delicacy and discretion, in which he had been used to have the highest confidence, have apparently been lain asleep by the same source! Pernicious influence!! Hateful man!! (:->)
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