Study Guide

Clarissa Letters 31-50

By Samuel Richardson

Letters 31-50

  • Remix time! Instead of the old Clarissa-writes-to-Anna routine, we get a letter from Lovelace to his pal John Belford.
  • Lovelace lets Belford into a little secret: he really, really likes Clarissa. Too bad he also really hates the Harlowe family.
  • It's not totally his fault. When Lovelace was younger, he got punked by another man—and not in the Ashton Kutcher kind of way. After he got dumped for a high-class dude, he swore his vengeance on all of ladykind.
  • In the meantime, Clarissa tells it like it is to Solmes. Ain't gonna happen, no way, no how.
  • Surprise, surprise. Solmes doesn't care. He's happy to have Clarissa even if she doesn't love him
  • So Lovelace isn't a total creep, it turns out. When he has the opportunity to seduce a pretty young innkeeper's daughter named Rosebud (for real?) he declines. Actually, he even gives the girl some money for her future hubby.
  • If it wasn't Big Brother enough in Clarissa's house already, Lovelace has a guy on the inside. That would be Joseph Leman, a money-hungry doofus servant.
  • Lovelace isn't just content to sit around and let Joe bring him tidbits. Nope, he waits outside for Clarissa behind a woodpile. That's not creepy at all.
  • Clarissa takes it all in stride. Somehow, she's not totally turned off by Lovelace's weird hiding scheme. Her nurse, Mrs. Norton, sees through Lovelace's tricks and tries to get her to check out Solmes.
  • The Harlowes are basically desperate to make Clarissa like Solmes. Mrs. Harlowe tries bribing her daughter with clothes and jewels, but Clarissa is no gold-digger. Sing it, Kanye!
  • Whenever Clarissa and Arabella meet up, it's a recipe for a catfight. The two throw down in Clarissa's room when she refuses to cooperate with the family's wishes.
  • Meanwhile, Anna's got her own problems. Her mom wants her to marry this dude named Hickman, so she makes a pros and cons list.
  • There aren't really any cons. Hickman is such a nice guy, blah blah blah. Way to rub it in, Anna!
  • But Anna really wants to help her BFF. When Lovelace visits Anna to see if she'll be an ally, she agrees to try to bring the lovebirds together.