Posted by Laura Wallace on November 15, 1997 at 13:52:41:
In response to Yes, but would Mr Darcy?, written by Caroline on October 09, 1997 at 16:10:08
] However, Austen heros and Clubs somehow don't seem to "gel" in my brain. Can anyone imagine Mr Knightly or Edward Ferrars using one much? Or even Darcy? Willoughby, yes. Wickham, yes, if they would have him. What about our Frederick
There was nothing "bad" about belonging to a club. Even the clubs which provided heavy gambling like Brooks' weren't considered disreputable; on the contrary, belonging to a club like that was a major mark of social status, and almost a requirement for anyone with any interest in advancing a government career or rising socially. Clubs were at the heart of power.
Men didn't just gamble at their clubs. They often spent most of the day there, ate dinner, read the papers and discussed politics, horses, and things considered improper to discuss in front of ladies. At some clubs they gambled. At all clubs they "hung out," to use the modern term, and "networked."
Mr. Darcy, Captain Wentworth, and Mr. Knightly would certainly have belonged to clubs if they spent any time at all in London, and probably even if they didn't. As a clergyman, Mr. Ferrars would have belonged to one if for no other reason than because his mother would have expected it.
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