- Dec 2018
Chapter 6 Synopsis: The Parkers take Charlotte to the Sanditon library. They then meet Lady Denham and her cousin Clara Brereton. Charlotte observes that Lady Denham seems intelligent and self-satisfied, and that Miss Brereton is as lovely as a heroine she would expect in a novel. Lady Denham discusses the possible groups of people that may arrive at Sanditon with Mr Parker, and fears that the arrival of the wealthy West Indian family may cause prices to rise. She also tells him that Sanditon doesn't need a doctor, as having one would only encourage the poor to believe that they're sick.
Chapter 7 Synopsis: Lady Denham’s nephew and niece (Sir Edward and Esther) visit the Parkers. During this time, Charlotte talks to Sir Edward about poetry and notices that he seems to have romantic feelings for Clara Brereton. During their conversation Charlotte starts to find Sir Edward slightly idiotic, and changes the subject from literature to the weather. Everyone later goes on a walk, and Charlotte realizes that Sir Edward’s decision to engage with her is a scheme to annoy Clara Brereton. Charlotte also gets to talk to Lady Denham, and is disgusted by her unwillingness to help her family financially. Lady Denham, it seems, is preoccupied with ensuring that Sir Edward and Esther marry someone with a large fortune.
It seems that the very energetic and youthful characters in Jane Austen novels also end up being slightly insensitive. In Emma, for instance, Mr Woodhouse is upset at the way that Frank Churchill leaves the doors open despite the cold weather, showing his disregard for others
Hillier is the tenant of Mr Parker's old house
We are students in a Jane Austen english course and have created this annotated edition of Sanditon for other Austen students and enthusiasts. We hope to improve ease of understanding and readability by providing clarification on vocabulary, plot, literary references, and historical context. In addition, our goal is to provide some creative insight into how Sanditon fits within the context of Austen's own life as well as her other novels. With this in mind, we provide speculation about how this unfinished novel may have ended.
Chapter 4 Synopsis: On the drive to Sanditon the group passes by the Parker's previous home (Trafalgar House), and it becomes clear that Mrs Parker misses the house and its garden. In the context of this discussion, Mr Parker's brother Sidney is referenced as a clever person that has the ability to get away with saying anything. As the group approaches Sanditon House, Mr Parker realizes that there are fewer people than he had expected.
Chapter 5 Synopsis: In this chapter the readers learn more about Mr Parker's family and their preoccupation with illness. His sister Diana writes him a letter telling him that she continues to suffer from spasmodic bile, that their sister Susan continues to have headaches, and that their brother Arthur is concerned about his liver. Mr Parker explains that Arthur's conviction about being an invalid is something that his brother Sidney always teases him about. Given the family's poor health, Diana tells Mr Parker that they won't be able to visit Sanditon. Meanwhile, there are two parties that might be coming to Sanditon: one is a group of schoolgirls from Camberwell, and the other is a rich West Indian family from Surrey.
one family of children who came from London for sea air after the whooping cough
In the 18th century English physicians would prescribe cold sea water and sea air to cure a variety of sicknesses. It was common for ailing people to be dunked in the freezing sea, as "the adrenaline from the shock of cold was thought to have soothing effects on the body, calming anxiety and restoring the body-soul balance".
This historical question has been debated up to the twenty-first century:
Does the Sea Air Have Curative Powers? - WSJ https://www.wsj.com/articles/does-the-sea-air-have-curative-powers-1407797285
Does the sea air have healing powers? | Fox News https://www.foxnews.com/health/does-the-sea-air-have-healing-powers
Out of the blue: The healing power of the sea - ABC News www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-26/could-sea-help-manage-mental-illness/8343932
It is strange that Charlotte is accompanying the Parkers when her own parents only just met them. This plot point is similar to the moment that Catherine Morland stays with the Tilneys, even though her family doesn't know them at all.
An equipage is an archaic term for a horse drawn carriage and its attendants. https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/equipage
Here is an article about regency transportation (including video links): https://janeaustensworld.wordpress.com/tag/regency-transportation/
Women are the only correspondents to be depended on
A common theme across Austen novels is that women tend to be more meticulous about writing letters than men. In Mansfield Park, for instance, Mary Crawford laments the fact that her brother Henry writes very short letters, if at all. Similarly, in Sense and Sensibility there is frequent correspondence between Marianne, Eleanor, and their mother. It is relevant that Austen herself frequently wrote letters to her sister Cassandra. Here is a sample of their correspondence: http://www.bl.uk/learning/timeline/item126754.html
They have wretched health, as you have heard us say frequently, and are subject to a variety of very serious disorders. Indeed, I do not believe they know what a day's health is.
There seems to be a focus on illness in this novel, which reflects Jane's Austen own health at the time she wrote Sanditon. 5 days after Austen finished chapter 12, she wrote a letter in which she explained that she was very ill and reflected that “Sickness is a dangerous Indulgence at my time of Life”