Study Guide

Lovelace's Prostitutes in Clarissa

By Samuel Richardson

Lovelace's Prostitutes

Lovely Ladies Who Love Lovelace

Lovelace attracts admirers everywhere he goes, and the five Mrs. So-and-Sos— Mrs. Moore, Widow Bevis, Mrs. Lovick, Miss Rawlins, and Mrs. Smith—are proof. Who else but Mrs. Moore would let Lovelace sneak into a boarding house dressed as an old man and then make off with Clarissa? And Mrs. Smith is "so taken with him" that she almost takes him straight to the ailing Clarissa, despite her explicit orders to keep the guy away (399.39).

Widow Bevis, on the other hand, can't help but get a little flirty with the man of the hour. To Lovelace's delight, she spends some time "winking and pinking" at him before helping him get Clarissa in his power (244.3). Ladies, what's the big appeal?