Study Guide

Sense and Sensibility Chapter 6

By Jane Austen

Chapter 6

  • After a gloomy journey, the Dashwoods arrive at Barton Cottage, their new home. It turns out to be a pretty nice place – it's not that impressive after their former grand abode at Norland, nor is it the romantic, picturesque story-book cottage they'd imagined, but it'll do.
  • The Dashwood servants, who'd arrived earlier to set up the house, manage to cheer up the girls, and everyone actually feels OK about their new living situation.
  • The family goes about its business settling in to the house and making plans for improvements (though they might be difficult, given that they don't have much money… thanks a lot, John and Fanny).
  • The next day, the girls meet their landlord/cousin, Sir John Middleton. He's a nice guy – maybe not the most graceful or elegant, but definitely a kind and good-natured man.
  • Sir John's wife, Lady Middleton, is certainly elegant and lovely to look at, but she's not as personable as her husband; she's kind of a cold fish.
  • Fortunately, Lady Middleton brings along the couple's oldest son on their visit to the cottage – and when you've got a bunch of women cooing over a little kid, there's always something to talk about.
  • The Middletons leave, after asking the Dashwoods to dinner at their house, Barton Park, the next day.