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Sneaking a Peek at Sense & Sensibility Entry 9


People: Elinor, Marianne, and Willoughby

Text: Elinor pitied and esteemed him (Brandon) the more because he was slighted by Willoughby and Marianne, who  prejudiced against him for being neither lively nor young, seemed resolved to undervalue his merits.

               “Brandon is just the kind of man,” said Willoughby one day, when they were speaking of him together, “whom everybody speaks well of, and nobody cares about; whom all are delighted to see, and nobody remembers to talk to.”

               “That is exactly what I think of him,” cried Marianne.

               “Do not boast of it however,” said Elinor, “for it is injustice in both of you. He is highly esteemed by all the family at the park, and I never see him myself without taking pains to converse with him.”

               “That he is patronized by you,” replied Willoughby, “is certainly in his favor; but as for the esteem of the others, it is a reproach in itself. Who would submit to the indignity of being approved by such women as Lady Middleton and Mrs. Jennings, that could command the indifference of anybody else?”

               Elinor said, “If their praise is censure, your censure may be praise, for they are not more undiscerning, than you are prejudiced and unjust.”

Emotion: jealousy and gossip

Insight: Ephesians 4:29 would take Marianne and Willoughby to task with this reminder, “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouth, but only such as is good for building up…” Gossip is a dangerous pastime, and that based on true jealousy is downright repugnant. Let us rise above the petty behavior of these two lovers and honor those honorable people in our lives.

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