Study Guide

Mansfield Park Chapter 19

By Jane Austen

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Chapter 19

  • Everyone is shocked and horrified. If Sir Thomas was expecting a welcome home party, he's in for a bad surprise.
  • Mr. Yates thinks someone is out to get him since this is the second play he's been involved in that's gotten canceled last minute. He's cursed, clearly.
  • The Bertram kids rush out to greet their dad.
  • Maria is thrilled that Henry stayed near her when the news of her dad's return broke and is convinced that Henry will propose soon so she can safely dump Rushworth.
  • Fanny hangs back since she isn't a Bertram kid and since her uncle scares her.
  • The Crawfords decide to make a run for it and Mr. Yates wanders off.
  • Fanny finally goes to see her uncle and discovers that he's actually been asking for her.
  • Sir Thomas seems very different – he's downright joyful and is unusually affectionate with his family. He's super nice to Fanny, which confuses her since he's usually more reserved.
  • Sir Thomas tells everyone about his long-running overseas adventures. He also meets Mr. Rushworth for the first time and thinks that his daughter's suitor is cool.
  • Mrs. Norris is a bit put out by Sir Thomas's arrival since she wasn't given an important role in it.
  • Lady Bertram finally spills the beans about the acting.
  • Sir Thomas seems interested but not really upset.
  • Tom quickly deflects any questions and makes it sound like they've just been reading some plays together, no big deal. He then starts talking about hunting to distract his dad.
  • But then Sir Thomas goes off to look in on his billiard room and his office, which are now Theater Club headquarters.
  • Everyone freaks out.
  • Fanny tells everyone that the Crawfords have left but that Mr. Yates is still there.
  • Tom runs off to intercept his dad but he's too late.
  • Sir Thomas stumbles in on Yates rehearsing by himself.
  • Sir Thomas is civil to Yates but he's obviously displeased by the whole thing.
  • Sir Thomas comes back and announces that he's seen the theater. It's clear that he's not happy.
  • Well, clear to everyone but Mr. Yates, who proceeds to tell Sir Thomas about the Theater Club in great detail.
  • The Bertram kids want to kill him.
  • Sir Thomas glares at his kids during all of this and he's particularly disappointed in Edmund, who was supposed to be the moral one.
  • Sir Thomas then announces he wants to relax after his journey and lets the theater thing drop. He asks about the Crawfords and Mr. Rushworth exclaims that he thinks Henry is not so great.
  • Sir Thomas is confused.
  • Rushworth then explains that he thinks the theater is dumb and tries to link that to why he hates Henry but he's having trouble getting his point out. Sir Thomas jumps in and notes that the there are much better things to be doing than acting.
  • Rushworth is still ok in Sir Thomas's book since he's keeping his mouth shut mostly.

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