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Did Charlote ever regreted the marriage she made to Mr. Collins?

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message 1: by Elisa Santos (last edited Nov 05, 2011 12:28PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Elisa Santos So, i was wondering if she ever regreted it?

When Mr Collins leaves the Bennett´s house, Charlote takes him to her house and almost immediatly gets engaged.
When Lizzy goes to her house, by the time of her engagement to Mr.Collins she seems almost relieved that Lizzy has forgiven her and her ways and almost forces her to travel and visit her at the rectory, after she is married.
And then, when Lizzy is at Hunsford she confesses to a life of solitude, mostly because she does not stand to be beside him.

What do you make of it - did she ever regreted taking that move, because she was also a gentleman´s daughter and could have married better off or just the backstabbing on her friend?


Colin Anderson I dont think she did. Although she knew Collins was a moron, he was wealthy and had a good social standing, so it was the best marriage she could make. She was being pragmatic, marrying Collins was a way to ensure her future livelihood.


Christina O. I don't think Charlotte regretted marrying Collins, she's too practical. She understood her situation and was scared that she would end up alone and poor. She may not like Mr. Collins, but he was her only choice.


Elisa Santos Yes,Carlote is the pratical gal and knew that offers where not coming out of the blue sky for her to marry a rich, handsome and less boring of a man - i have took that much. What it seemed to me, more apparent on the BBC mini-series is the sometimes contrition of Charlote towards Lizzy, like she would say "Ok, you knew that i don´t care about love so i married your cousin, whom you have slited - but i feel a twinge of pain for the means by which i have achieved it" sort of thing. Like winner´s guilt, if this exists.


Susan How could she not regret marrying Mr. Collins?? In her situation, 200 years ago, though, she didn't have much choice. If she didn't want to have to rely on Maria possibly marrying and allowing her a corner, she had to marry someone and Mr. Collins was the first offer. She was secure, but she couldn't have been very happy.


Jessica Clement I don't think she regretted marrying Mr. Collins. She knew that the older she got the less likely she would be to marry and he had a favorable position in life. She felt she had made a good and practical match.


Kiersten I don't think she regretted marrying Mr. Collins. At the time in history, women had such little power, over estates, their money and even their thoughts. She seem more resigned then disappointed. It was just the way it was for women back then.


Elisa Santos I know that women back then had no control whatsoever over anything, not even what was on their minds and Charlote was a very practical young lady that knew that, as time wentby that the offer ofmarriage would diminish untilt they virually dissapear. A woman was not alowed to have lands of her own, to administer her money, etc.

But i think that she felt a twinge towards Lizzy, because of the manner in which she immeditly took advantage of her friend´s refusal to marry Mr. Collins; to be sure that Mr Collins did not waste time to find a replacement either, for the "grand infatuation" that he had for Lizzy, but Charlote seemsby all of her behavious at her house, when Lizzy goes to visit her and congratulate her on her engagement that she almost appologises for her actions,not saying the wrods but appearing to be in distress for her friends opinion on it and pressing for her to pay her a visit, at the rectory later on.


Kiersten Maria wrote: "I know that women back then had no control whatsoever over anything, not even what was on their minds and Charlote was a very practical young lady that knew that, as time wentby that the offer ofma..."

I totally agree with you. She does apologize to Lizzy,and was always excited to receive her company (and her father and sister) so can have some human contact of the people she really likes. I still don't feel sorry for Charlote. She did what she had to do. It did provide her with security.


Elisa Santos I do not feel sorry for Charlote either: she did exactly what she told Lizzy she would do - secure her a husband as soon as maybe, before she could perceive every litle irritating detail in him. I can never forget what she said to Lizzy, at her house when commenting on Jane and Bingley: "There will always be vexation and grief and it´s best to know as litle as possible of the defects of your future husband, is it not?"
So, in fact, she did as she bid and for all accounts, she was well provided for, although bored to tears. I did find the description of her day, that she told Lizzy, how she and Mr Collins only spent about 5 mins of each day in each other´s company to be very....discouraging, to say the least: that´s why she said the she finded herself quite content with her present situation - not happy, content: this is the key word.


Rachel I believe that she tolerates her husband, she likes to lead a quiet, loner life and as she says, she encourages Mr Collins to keep busy outside the house. She likes to sit in the house and read, and stitch and be comfortable, so she is happy. She does feel guilt over Lizzy, but this is unfounded, Lizzy does not care about that, she just thinks her friend has sold out and does not understand marrying without love, respect and admiration for a partner, who she considers to be an intellectual equal


message 12: by Sheila (last edited Nov 07, 2011 06:14AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sheila I agree with what many have already stated - Charlotte is extremely pragmatic and has denied within herself any "flighty" or out-of-reach ideas that would allow for romantic love in marriage.

It never occurred to me that Charlotte would feel any guilt over accepting Mr. Collins so soon after Lizzy's rejection of him. Instead, I think she is bent on showing to Lizzy (and perhaps to herself) that she can hammer out a comfortable and content life for herself out of the circumstances she has acted upon.

I assume there would soon be children for Charlotte to devote much of her time to, which perhaps would increase her satisfaction with her lot in life and maybe even add some faint echo of affection to her feelings about Mr. Collins as the father of her children.

This, I think, might be indicative of many real-life relationships of the women of the time; probably the majority of them, who married not out of love but out of the expectations of family and society.


message 13: by Elisa Santos (last edited Nov 07, 2011 06:06AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Elisa Santos @Sheila - maybe Charlote showing Lizzy that the idea that she rejected so much - marrying a man that she did not love or feel as her intelectual equal - that it was possible, convenient and even most wanted and that she was a fool to pass on Mr Collins because quite simply that she was not in love with him? Never thought of it that way....

Yes, i would bet that the majority of the women married according to the family´s ambitions and feelings, if they ever occured, they would show up after some time, when they became more aquainted with each other (husband and wife) since they were virtually strangers right up until the altar.


message 14: by Sheila (last edited Nov 07, 2011 07:08AM) (new) - rated it 4 stars

Sheila I think Lizzy and Charlotte are alot alike, which would explain their friendship. Practical and clever. However, Charlotte lacks the romantic idealism or the nerve of Lizzy - she's not willing to risk being alone and the inevitable poverty that comes for a woman in that time period, in that kind of situation. She works within the framework of what she's been given and hopes to find her happiness that way.

Lizzy is forging a risky path in her eyes, holding out for an unknown quantity (love) and hoping that if she finds it, that life will arrange it that so she'll somehow be happier (and better off) for having found it.


message 15: by Pola (new) - rated it 5 stars

Pola She didnt seem sure about it in the first place.. I don't think she was happy with her marriage but she was aware of having been a burden to her parents.. And because she didnt have any other options in marriage i believe that she went for Mr. Collins.


Elisa Santos Like he was the last train out of town hahah let´s get it while i can!

I think you hitted a point there Madame - she had mixed feelings about her marriage but alas it was too late to go back and she had to manage the best she could with the poor deal of a husband she had. But no doubt that she was congratulating herselfon her good fortune in having married him.


Amicus (David Barnett) And she would one day inherit Mr Bennet's property on his death. That must have been very consoling.


Sruthi I agree with all the people that said she would not have regretted her marriage because she saw it a practical match. She does tell Elizabeth that 'love' in a marriage is a matter of chance, and then she weighs out the possibility of that happening for her versus it not. Obviously, marrying Collins was her best bet. It may not have given her incomparable happiness, but it did give her a comfortable life, which was more than what was expected for her.


Karyn Kar Mun (Thy Evil Queen) She had no better alternative. It was terrible fate to be a spinster in those days. So I doubt she regretted it, since she couldn't have had made a better choice.


Elisa Santos Oh, i forgot that she would inherit Longbourne....well, that must have soothed all of her.... ahum doubts if the marriage was a profitable one!
Yeah, being a spinster on those days meant that you were a guest at somebody else´s house, not having a thing to call your own and living of the charity of the family, basically - i would not want that as well: better married with the very boring and very obliging Mr Collins that not having my own sort of independence.


message 21: by Abbyb1 (last edited Jun 25, 2012 06:19AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Abbyb1 I agree with all who suggest Charlotte did not regret marrying Mr. Collins nor do I think she regretted her "solitude" post marriage. I think she preferred it to being with her husband. When she speaks to Lizzy at Hunsford of her situation, she is not complaining. She is matter-of-fact and practical.

Charlotte is a woman of her time who knows that marriage to Mr. Collins has given her a modicum of success that she wouldn't have known had she remained single or married a less "settled" man. As a "plain" woman, her prospects were limited and she did well enough in her choice to marry Mr. Collins.

I think, however, that Lizzy very much regrets her friend's marriage to her simpering cousin, but I digress. :)


Elizabeth I don't think she regretted it. If she had hoped to marry the love of her life, yes she would have been terribly disappointed but Charlotte never striked me as that kind of girl

She was practical and realistic, she knew what she wanted, and went for it. She got a husband, a house, and a respected position, it was what she expected. And she liked it. I don't think it was the best choice she could have made, but she felt her time was running out and she had no other choice.

And I agree with the post before me, Lizzy definitely regrets Charlotes marriage.


Andrea I also agree that she didn't regret marrying Mr. Collins. She knew what she was getting herself into, and was Mr. Collins not the same? I'm pretty sure he didn't start looking for a wife until Lady Catherine told him to; so I'm sure the expectations of the marriage on both sides were equal. Charlotte understands Mr. Collins's character and lets him have at it, but she has her own space, too, as described in the book. I'm sure Charlotte fully considered what it would be like to marry just to have a stable situation in life. She always struck me as a realist who doesn't like much change.

And sure, it affected her friendship with Elizabeth, but their friendship was strong enough to overcome Charlotte's choice, even if Elizabeth was none too happy about it. I think Elizabeth's mindset was a little unorthodox for the time period she was living in. I'm pretty sure if Darcy hadn't been in the picture, Elizabeth would have never married, even if it guaranteed her a stable income and a home -- which is why she decidedly refused Mr. Collins when he proposed. Charlotte understood that she didn't have very many options beyond a respectable proposal, which is why she didn't hesitate when Mr. Collins proposed. Charlotte wasn't trying to backstab Elizabeth, she was only doing what she thought was the best for herself.

Besides, it wasn't as if Elizabeth was angry at her because Charlotte took her beau; she was only a little hurt that Charlotte would have settled for what in her eyes was so little.


Elisa Santos Precisely Andrea - Elizabeth was a bit hurt at first with Charlotte because she knew that Mr. Collins was a simpering idiot and nothing else.
I also believe that she would have been a spinster if Darcy hadn´t showed up and rescue her - i even think that if he was not quite so rich she would still have him - they are a perfect match for each other.

Nonetheless, i would say that Charlotte is not perfectly content iwht her solitude - she just accepts it because standing near her husband more than 5 minutes of each day would be insuportable.


Michelle Wardhaugh Also consider the homes that Charlotte and Elizabeth came from. Elizabeth had one sensible parent, but Charlotte had none. She was quite used to living with the mentally incompetent. In that regard her marriage was a step up. It cut the number of idiots she had in her household down by at least one (very little detail about her siblings) and gave her the management position of the household on top of that. If we think of her life in terms of employment, her marriage was definitely a career advancement with room for more in the future (inheritance).


Elisa Santos Michelle wrote: "Also consider the homes that Charlotte and Elizabeth came from. Elizabeth had one sensible parent, but Charlotte had none. She was quite used to living with the mentally incompetent. In that reg..."

Hahahaha very well put out! Great analogy!


Sophie-Lousie I think that Charlotte believed that she was running out of options. She was reaching the end of her desirable marriage age, and she probably feared that she may never get another offer. She was ensured a comfortable home, and a secure future - even if she did have to live with Mr Collins- with the marriage.


message 28: by Effy (new) - rated it 3 stars

Effy Sophie-Lousie wrote: "I think that Charlotte believed that she was running out of options. She was reaching the end of her desirable marriage age, and she probably feared that she may never get another offer. She was en..."

I agree with you. Charlotte was running out of time for she was very much older than Elizabeth. She was still living with her parents and couldn't leave without receiving an offer of marriage or to go up north to work in the factories and such. Her family does not have much money and so she had to accept any offer of marriage she could get. Which Mr. Collins was the only offer. Lucky for her Mr. Collins does not come home so often and she likes to be alone. She does not regret marrying but might not love him.


Elisa Santos Charlotte working in the factories....hum, now there´s a cenario that does not make much sense to me; sure, her family did not had a lot of money - still, her father was knighted and i am sure that, with that fact, he would not wished to be knowned to have a working, labouring daughter in some dark factory making a quid a day. Sir William was much too proud of his elevation to knighthood - he even sugested introducing the Bingley sisters at the St Jame´s balls - even though he could have come from a humble background (as i am sure he did) he most certainly would not want for any of his girls to know hardhip; bedised they could marry higher up in the social later, that would confirm their position in society.


message 30: by Shanna (last edited Nov 21, 2011 01:36AM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Shanna I think probably in small ways every day. An intelligent woman married to an obsequious fool she had to regret some things. But on the big essentials, the practical stuff, no.


Robyn Smith Maria wrote: "So, i was wondering if she ever regreted it?

When Mr Collins leaves the Bennett´s house, Charlote takes him to her house and almost immediatly gets engaged.
When Lizzy goes to her house, by th..."



Robyn Smith I'm sure she must've regretted it in the sense that she would've hardly been able to stand his grossness making "love" to her, and had to go out of her way to ensure she didn't spend too much time in his company.
Although she was practical, she would have longed for a soulmate which Mr Collins could never have been .


Bookishnymph *needs hea* Charlotte made it clear she didn't care about romance and love, but wanted a safe place to live . . .so I'd say she didn't regret the marriage.
On the other hand, I wouldn't touch Mr. Collins with a twenty-foot pole. :)


message 34: by Lis (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lis Carey Maria wrote: "Sir William was much too proud of his elevation to knighthood - he even sugested introducing the Bingley sisters at the St Jame´s balls - even though he could have come from a humble background (as i am sure he did) he most certainly would not want for any of his girls to know hardhip; bedised they could marry higher up in the social later, that would confirm their position in society."

Charlotte realized, even if her father did not, that at 27, she was almost past the age of marrying at all, certainly past any expectation of marrying higher than Mr. Collins. She had never received an offer before; she wasn't going to receive another one after. Sir William, for all his love of the status his elevation to knighthood gave him, never even attempted to move into sociey circles outside his own county, and the very best the very plain Charlotte could have hoped for even when she was younger was a wealthy merchant.

Don't forget even Jane's chances were nearly wrecked by the fact that Mrs. Bennett and the younger sisters were a pack of very annoying fools.


Elisa Santos Lis wrote: "Maria wrote: "Sir William was much too proud of his elevation to knighthood - he even sugested introducing the Bingley sisters at the St Jame´s balls - even though he could have come from a humble ..."

I think that although Mrs Bennett and her younger daughters were nerve-wrecking fools, Jane´s almost gored chances were also due to the fact that the Bingley sisters, with all the noveau-riche haughtiness thought that their brother should aime higher than a simple knight´s daughter, living in the country.

Charlotte was as plain as it could be and her chances were never high by any stretch of the imagination: Sir William never ventured himself outside the county, were he was very well knowned and respected, but limited his daughter´s marrying chances.


Shanna Sir william went to the balls at St James at least outside the county and offered to introduce the Bingley sisters there (much to their disgust)I think at the first ball in Meryton


message 37: by Lis (new) - rated it 5 stars

Lis Carey Shanna wrote: "Sir william went to the balls at St James at least outside the county and offered to introduce the Bingley sisters there (much to their disgust)I think at the first ball in Meryton"

He was presented at St. James once, on the occasion of his knighting. Meryton is the local town, part of the immediate neighborhood where he is a "big fish." As much as he enjoyed being presented at St. James, he never bought or rented a London house, but bought his country home and enjoyed his prominence there.


Elisa Santos Like the Cheers theme-song said "where everybody knows your name" - that was the logic of sir Lucas: he was never going to go outside of his "sphere" because inside that circle was where he was somebody, where he was recognized and not "Sir, William....hã?"


Shanna Lis wrote: "Shanna wrote: "Sir william went to the balls at St James at least outside the county and offered to introduce the Bingley sisters there (much to their disgust)I think at the first ball in Meryton"
..."


Oh, I'm with you now.


message 40: by Erin (last edited Dec 06, 2011 12:19PM) (new) - rated it 5 stars

Erin WV Robyn wrote: Although she was practical, she would have longed for a soulmate which Mr Collins could never have been.
I don't see why we have to assume that. Some women don't long for soulmates. I'm sure if Charlotte had been born in a different time, she would have pursued a career and only married if she absolutely wanted to. Her satisfaction with the time she spends alone suggests that she might never have wanted to. Everybody is quick to attribute that to her hating Collins, but she might legitimately prefer being alone.


Elisa Santos Maybe,on today days in age she would have been a more career-driven woman than marriage material - that can be about right. But, at the time in question, she prefered to be alone than to be bored with Mr. Colins endless verborhoea.


Elisa Santos I think that the marriage that she made was like the vast majority of the marriages at the time: loveless but mandatory. Austen, i think, wanted to put that in front of everybody´s eyes, that reality and the marriages made by Jane and Lizzy were the odd one´s out, where there was love, understanding and sharing of ideas between the couple.


message 43: by Mary (new) - rated it 5 stars

Mary I once read a good commentary on P&P's portrayals of a wide range of marriages, convenience/ need for income / love / synergy from the Bennets's bad match to the aunt and uncle in London being so well paired with a strong marriage. Anyway, the article suggested that what Charlotte did choose conservatively, took the safest path, whereas what she would really have enjoyed in her life would have been a fling with Wickham! I like to think of this (not that she ever would have stepped outside of her marriage vows) as a sort of Austenian Dona Flor and her Two Husbands.


Elisa Santos Well, that i certainly a new light shed on Charlotte - very interesting! and i had never made the comparison between the Bennet´s marriage, that is stale and the strong and loving one of Jane and Lizzy´s aunts - you can see the love in their house, when Jane is staying there.


Teresa Edgerton I think Charlotte was resigned to her marriage with Mr. Collins; but I also think she had been resigned to her situation in life for a long time. As the spinster daughter/sister/aunt, she was always going to be a nobody in the family, probably imposed on by everyone else. Mr. Collins was an annoyance only so many hours a day. If she'd stayed home, she would have had to put up with patronizing behavior almost all her waking hours.

As for apologizing to Elizabeth, I think she did that because she knew Lizzie would be disappointed in her for choosing as she did. Of course after her first reaction, when she was taken by surprise, Lizzie was too kind to ever tell Charlotte what she really thought.

When she became a mother, Charlotte would probably be much happier than before. When the child was old enough, he or she would be a companion ... one Charlotte could raise to be much more rational than might be expected of the child of such a father.


Elisa Santos I expect that much either - that Charlotte would raise her children in the contrary manner of their father, and they would be her most wanted companions. I agree with that.

As a spinster she would be looked down to, smirked at, hinted that "no one would put up with her" and she grabbed the opportunity to make something out of her life, in the constrictions of the time.


Jennifer Williams Let's face it, Charlotte settled because she had to. It's the way it was back then, and it still happens today, although the "force" isn't so much implied.

She was 27 *GASP* ..she felt she did what she had to do.

I don't see Charlotte's character as being someone who did anything she would "regret" ...she's too awesome for that.

Yes, even marrying Collins. She got to 'run her own home' ...she was happy, even having to deal with ding-bat.


Kressel Housman "I'm not a romantic; I never was."

That's a hard worldview for all us P&P fans to relate to, but that's Charlotte. No, she never regretted it.


MaryAnn Kempher She never wanted to marry him, but once she did she was resigned to her life. She knew going in she was marrying a dope, she just lives her life a part from his as much as possible. My real question is, did they had kids? Was she able to bare his touch?


Melissa Ennis Madame wrote: "I think that Charlotte would have had mixed feelings about her marriage. She was secure and had someone to take care of her but no one to love her. Poor Charlotte."

The good news: she will have her baby-- the "young olive branch" -- to love. And there will be more children.

The bad news: Mr Collins is the father.


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