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Emma Chapter Forty-Seven Summary
Immediately concerned about Harriet – who’s about to be snubbed for the second time – Emma hurries home. As she walks, she thinks about all the things that she could have done differently had she known about the engagement. For one thing, she might have liked Jane much more. And she wouldn’t have made fun of her with Frank. It now occurs to her that all of her attempts to befriend Jane when she was ill were probably arrows into Jane’s heart. Just think about how badly Frank ignored her at Box Hill – and how much he flirted with Emma! Emma regrets that Mr. Weston swore her to secrecy about the engagement. Surprisingly, Emma meets Harriet at the gate of Hartfield – and Harriet has already heard all about the engagement. She met Mr. Weston on the road. Apparently Mr. Weston has a pretty broad definition of the word "secret." Harriet relates the news to Emma with apparent joy. She’s not even a little bit upset. Emma’s totally confused. Wasn’t Harriet madly in love with Frank? How can she be so calm about the utter failure of her plans – again? Emma asks Harriet why she’s not upset. Harriet is confused (big surprise). She explains to Emma that the man she loves – the man she agreed never to name – is so totally completely better than Frank that she never even thought about Frank. Not for a second. Emma feels the ground drop from under her. Could Harriet mean Mr. Knightley? Yup. As it turns out, Harriet loves Mr. Knightley. And, to make matters worse, she thinks that Emma supports her love. What about the fact that Frank rescued Harriet from the gypsies? We’re so glad you asked. In fact, Emma asks the same question. As it turns out, the "rescue" Harriet was thinking about was when Mr. Knightley asked her to dance. Mortal terror versus social awkwardness? It’s an easy call. It’s ALWAYS worse to be left alone at a dance! Emma suddenly can’t hear Harriet talking – her mind is moving too fast. In a flash, Emma realizes that Harriet can’t love Mr. Knightley. SHE loves him! There are a few moments of dramatic self-revelation. It’s pretty amazing, actually. Emma slowly realizes that there’s another problem: what if Mr. Knightley loves Harriet? Harriet explains why she thinks Mr. Knightley might like her. As Emma listens, her heart sinks. Maybe Mr. Knightley does like Harriet. Emma shudders at the thought. Harriet totally doesn’t deserve him. Then again, it wouldn’t be the first time that an amazing man married a stupid woman. Confused, Emma tells Harriet to leave. Left alone with her thoughts, Emma realizes that she’s always loved Mr. Knightley. She finally recognizes that it was pretty vain to assume that she could understand everyone else’s loves – when, really, she had no idea what her own feelings were!
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