Mansfield Park - Jane Austen - Страница 1 из 588

By Jane Austen
About thirty years ago Miss Maria Ward, of Huntingdon, with only seven
thousand pounds, had the good luck to captivate Sir Thomas Bertram, of
Mansfield Park, in the county of Northampton, and to be thereby raised
to the rank of a baronet's lady, with all the comforts and consequences
of an handsome house and large income. All Huntingdon exclaimed on the
greatness of the match, and her uncle, the lawyer, himself, allowed her
to be at least three thousand pounds short of any equitable claim to it.
She had two sisters to be benefited by her elevation; and such of their
acquaintance as thought Miss Ward and Miss Frances quite as handsome as
Miss Maria, did not scruple to predict their marrying with almost equal
advantage. But there certainly are not so many men of large fortune in
the world as there are pretty women to deserve them. Miss Ward, at the
end of half a dozen years, found herself obliged to be attached to
the Rev. Mr. Norris, a friend of her brother-in-law, with scarcely any
private fortune, and Miss Frances fared yet worse. Miss Ward's match,
indeed, when it came to the point, was not contemptible: Sir Thomas
being happily able to give his friend an income in the living of
Mansfield; and Mr. and Mrs. Norris began their career of conjugal
felicity with very little less than a thousand a year. But Miss Frances
married, in the common phrase, to disoblige her family, and by fixing on
a lieutenant of marines, without education, fortune, or connexions, did

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