Page:Austen Sanditon and other miscellanea.djvu/26

From Wikisource
Jump to: navigation, search
This page has been proofread, but needs to be validated.
4
PLAN OF A NOVEL

circumstances of his attachment to her mother, and their marriage, it will comprehend his going to sea as chaplain[1] to a distinguished naval character about the Court; his going afterwards to Court himself, which introduced him to a great variety of characters and involved him in many interesting situations, concluding with his opinion of the benefits of tithes being done away, and his having buried his own mother (heroine’s lamented grandmother) in consequence of the high priest of the parish in which she died refusing to pay her remains the respect due to them. The father to be of a very literary turn, an enthusiast in literature, nobody’s enemy but his own; at the same time most zealous in the discharge of his pastoral duties, the model of an exemplary parish priest.[2] The heroine’s friendship to be sought after by a young woman in the same neighbourhood, of talents and shrewdness, with light eyes and a fair skin, but having a considerable degree of wit;[3] heroine shall shrink from the acquaintance. From this outset the story will proceed and contain a striking variety of adventures. Heroine and her father never above a fortnight together in one place:[4] he being driven from his curacy by the vile arts of some totally unprincipled and heartless young man desperately in love with the heroine, and pursuing her with unrelenting passion. No sooner settled in one country of Europe than they are necessitated to quit it and retire to another, always making new acquaintance, and always obliged to leave them. This will, of course, exhibit a wide variety of characters, but there will be no mixture. The scene will be for ever shifting from one set of people to another; but all the good[5] will be unexceptionable in every respect, and there will be no foibles or weaknesses but with the wicked, who will be completely depraved and infamous, hardly a resem-

  1. Mr. Clarke.
  2. Mr. Sherer.
  3. Mary Cooke.
  4. Many critics.
  5. Mary Cooke.