Study Guide

Mansfield Park Chapter 24

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Chapter 24

  • Henry and Mary are talking together the next day and Henry complains that he's bored and needs a project.
  • He then shares his idea with her: he plans to make Fanny fall in love him, just for fun.
  • Mary tells him to shut up and be satisfied with already winning over both the Bertram girls.
  • Henry insists he has to make Fanny fall for him since she's gotten better looking.
  • Mary says she hasn't changed a bit and that Henry is full of it.
  • Henry then admits that he's intrigued by Fanny and doesn't know what to make of her. He's mainly intrigued by the fact that she doesn't seem to like him at all.
  • Mary then understands that he's only attracted to Fanny because she's hard to get and will be a challenge for him.
  • Henry says to give him two weeks and he'll make Fanny fall in love with him.
  • Mary just shrugs and says he can do what he wants.
  • But the narrator jumps in to tell us that Fanny will be almost impossible to get since she's already in love with Edmund. If Fanny weren't in love, she probably would be won over by the charming Henry.
  • So Henry has an uphill battle ahead of him, but he forges ahead without knowing just how big the challenge will be.
  • Fanny is civil to Henry and doesn't think much of his attention to her.
  • Good news: Fanny's long-absent brother William is coming to visit her.
  • William has been successful in the navy and is on shore for leave.
  • Henry learns that William's ship is returning to England and hopes to surprise Fanny with the news but she already knows about it. She does thank him for thinking of her, though, so score one for Henry.
  • William arrives and after some initial awkwardness due to a long time apart, the two have a joyful reunion and are thrilled to be together again.
  • Fanny spends her time talking William's ear off and basking in his presence, and William is just plain excited to be with his sister again.
  • Henry starts to fall for Fanny now after seeing her so happy with her brother. He decides that he needs more than two weeks to win her over properly.
  • Sir Thomas is impressed with William and thinks he's a good young man.
  • Henry is a bit jealous when he hears about William's exciting adventures at sea.
  • But then Henry recovers himself and remembers that he's rich and he can just buy his own excitement.
  • Fanny loves hearing all about William's adventures.
  • Henry invites William hunting with him in order to impress Fanny.

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