Sunday, 29 June 2014

Jane Austen Quote of the Week 273

Anthony Head as Sir Walter Elliot, BBC
I watched Persuasion 2007 last night and it prompted me to search for the quote from Persuasion, which seems to be my favourite Austen book after all. The quote is from Volume II, Chapter V, when Anne was about to visit her friend Mrs Smith at Westgate, and her "darling" father made a gigantic protest out of it for fear it would pollute the air of Camden Place, as Lady Catherine de Bourgh would no doubt put it.


"Westgate-buildings!' said he; "and who is Miss Anne Elliot to be visiting in Westgate-buildings?--A Mrs. Smith. A widow Mrs. Smith,--and who was her husband? One of five thousand Mr. Smiths whose names are to be met with every where. And what is her attraction? That she is old and sickly.--Upon my word, Miss Anne Elliot, you have the most extraordinary taste! Every thing that revolts other people, low company, paltry rooms, foul air, disgusting associations are inviting to you. But surely, you may put off this old lady till to-morrow. She is not so near her end, I presume, but that she may hope to see another day. What is her age? Forty?"


Well, thank you, Sir Walter, for suggesting that life is no more for a forty years old woman. I am very grateful that I live in the 21st century where we women enjoy not only a more equal education and opportunities, but also freedom to thrive and reach for our dreams in our forties. In fact, I am forty years old now, and I enjoy being at my current age.

And I'd like to know what Sir Walter would say had he had the honour to meet our dearest Linda, who is still galloping around the USA despite being much older than him. Linda dearest, what would you say to dear Sir Walter if you have the "honour" to meet his modern version?...I'm sure you will give him a good piece of your mind.

5 comments:

Linda Fern said...

Icha, I had to think about that for a couple of minutes, but here goes. At first, I thought that "times" really haven't changed so much because we still have "those" conditions as spoken of by Sir Walter Elliot. There are those who say "don't go there." But out of a spirit of Love, we must go there and do as Anne did to minister to those people. "There, will that do?" as Jane Austen would say.

Yrs aff'ly,
Linda the Librarian

Linda Fern said...

One more thing. I don't believe I have seen the 2007 version, since I claim the Amanda Root (1995) version as my favorite. My library has the 2007 version so I will give it a try the first chance I get. Thanks for the recommendation, from Linda who checks everything out.

Yrs aff'ly,
Linda the Librarian

April Dunlap said...

It bemuses me how the concept of "old" changes as we progress in age. I think I would be hopping mad now to receive such a comment--being 40 only this year, myself! :)

Icha said...

April, seconded. I am not only going to be hopping mad, but I will likely sit down and have a very extensive chat with the 2014 ver of Sir Walter Elliot on what he has most apparently missed out in the 21st century...

Icha said...

And Linda, you're most welcome. And you are correct too: we still have those Sir Walter Elliots here in the 21st CE, so we just have to look them square in the eye and keep doing what we believe in. Just like what Anne Elliot did.