Monday, March 20, 2006

A Groom With A View

A couple of things I have to say before we move on to Book 2, (and I am well into Book 2), first regarding Edward Casabaun, who is basically described as 'death warmed over', this quote: "She is grace herself, she is perfectly lovely and accomplished. That is what a woman ought to be: she ought to produce the effect of exquisite music. Plain women he regarded as he did the other severe facts of life, to be faced with philosophy and investigated by science." (Ch 11) So basically it sounds like he is looking for an ornament, rather than someone to share a life with. Poor Dorothea, she is looking for so much more than that! Interesting that his cousin, Will, also relates Dorothea to music.

Also from Chapter 11 I liked this quote: "Fred's studies are not very deep," said Rosamond, he is only reading a novel." I'll bet Ms. Eliot enjoyed writing that one! As well, I liked the quotes from Mrs Cadwallader that Kimbofo mentioned.


Blogger kimbofo said...

Yes, I also got a chuckle out of Rosamond's comment about Fred's novel reading.

2:45 PM  
Blogger Ella said...

Sam, great point about Mr. Causabon. I think an ornament is exactly what he thinks he's getting in Dorothea...

4:48 PM  
Blogger Isabella said...

Actually, Sam, if I'm reading it correctly, that quote ("grace herself...") is attributed to Lydgate, speaking of Rosamond. Although further on in that paragraph, it's said of Casaubon, "He took a wife, as we have seen, to adorn the remaining quadrant of his course, and be a little moon that would cause hardly a calculable perturbation."

I'm not prepared to judge Casubon on this point. Getting married is just what you do. I don't think it's all that unusual for that time to look for certain "qualities" in a wife — breeding, education, disposition, but looks to. If anything, I'm surprised only that Casaubon is at all aware of these things.

I think there was a line about him finding Dorothea to be a perfect audience.

7:43 PM  
Blogger Sam said...

Of course, you are right, Isabella. I was going by my hastily scribbled notes and was more taken with this viewpoint of the difference between plain and pretty women, than to whom it was accredited to. It does sound so Casaubonian, though, you must admit. And I am somewhat surprised to think that this was actually Lydgate's view. I had thought better of him.

12:03 AM  
Blogger gina c said...

Casaubon is also looking for a nurse... "to secure in this,
his culminating age, the solace of female tendance for his declining years." (Bk. 1, ch. 7)


8:15 AM  

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