Persuasion 200: Henrietta Considers Her Suitors — 11 Comments

  1. Henrietta is such a “non-character” in Persuasion it is nice to hear her voice for once. Usually she is just an appendage to Lousia but you have given her a personality as well as a depth that means she is not just a silly little girl. What a decision to make, even though it isn’t her decision anyway. Hopefully Charles Hayter will take his “unriped persimmon” look and do something about it. Great insight and lovely writing.

  2. I’m sure Cousin Charles feels the difference in himself and the dashing Captain for the very reasons that Henrietta is enumerating. He is afraid that the lure of the exotic might spirit away his future. I like this portrayal of Henrietta. She appears sensible and logical. In Persuasion, the biggest moment she gets is when Louisa is dragging her to go see Cousin Charles ostensibly to make the lines of relationship very clear. Nicely done!

  3. Yes, as Stephanie says, you have given Henrietta some personality here, which we have almost none of in canon. She comes off as a typical teenager, ready to fall in love with the first one who comes off as “the most popular” in their crowd. I think of the popularity of TV and movie stars and their fan base…Twilight had clubs for the 2 male leads. Hopefully her heart will become engaged and she will be the one to remain “firm”. Thank you for this look at Henrietta.

  4. I fully agree with Sheila & Stephanie that you have given Henrietta some personality. I loved getting inside her head and ‘seeing’ the wheels turn while ‘hearing’ her thoughts. While she is not self-sacrificing, it is nixe that she seems tobthinknof others besides herself and that she doesn’t want to cause the others pain. Beautifully written. Thank you for a lovely chapter.

  5. Yes, I agree with all of you that this glimpse into Henrietta’s thoughts gives us a deeper understanding of her character. We will consider her less ‘shallow and silly’ as she makes her decision of who will suit her better. Thank you!

  6. Enjoyed meeting Henrietta, in the novel we get just a glimpse, this chapter fleshed her out and shows her thought processes. Poor Cousin Charles, sure in his and her feelings until the dashing Capt.Wentworth lands in their little circle of friends.

  7. Carey,
    I was having trouble accessing the page when you posted this scene, so I left you a comment on Facebook instead, but I just wanted to say again here how much I enjoyed getting a peek into Henrietta’s mind! You did a wonderful job giving us all some insight into her perspective 😉 .

  8. Who wouldn’t prefer Capt. Wentworth over just about anyone other gentleman in this whole story! But I’m struck by how immature Henrietta is, only thinking about how marriage would affect her — he’s exciting and interesting, but might leave her a widow and destitute if something should happen to Wentworth (not that she would be devastated by his death and the loss of his companionship!). I guess that this would be typical of the kind of young lady she is, who never has thought about marriage in any more profound way, and how she might be relatively more or less interesting as a wife, to her potential suitors!

  9. It’s good to hear Henrietta mulling over who she should choose as her husband. It’s perfectly clear in Persuasion that Louisa is gunning for Wentworth but readers aren’t really sure who her elder sister prefer until Henrietta decides to marry their cousin after the incident in Lyme I think. I’m looking forward to read other thoughts and opinions from the minor characters.

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