"My dearest Emma..."
Posted by Kali on January 19, 1998 at 18:34:18:
In response to So, then.....what's the best proposal that JA wrote?(vote!), written by Caroline on January 19, 1998 at 16:28:55
..."for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour's conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma - tell me at once. Say 'No' if it is to be said."
..."I cannot make speeches, Emma," he soon resumed, and in a tome of such sincere, decided, intelligible tenderness as was totally convincing. "If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me..."
This is my favorite proposal, but I'm not certain I'd respond so favorably as Emma if some guy tried it on me. Marriage proposals are so very personal - and should be unique to the proposer and the proposee. My advice, Patrick, is to take from these proposals general style cues. But don't copy them in any way unless you're certain that you can make the lines you use your own - the effect must be "totally convincing"! Whatever you say, I'd recommend making it short and sweet and entirely from within you (unless your lady will prefer it otherwise - perhaps a study of her favorite Austen hero's proposal will give an indication). That's what makes Austen's proposals so effective - they are motivated by intense admiration, certainly, but they are logically and romantically convincing only as a tightly-woven summation of the poignant common experiences of the hero and heroine.
Good luck - it must be real love if you're willing to Austenize the big moment. The vast majority, I'd imagine, run along the lines of, "Hey, baby...you, me, Vegas - Elvis Chapel!"
Posting followups to old messages is disabled; instead go to the main index and post a new message which mentions this one.