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<- Previous | Table of Contents | Next -> Digital Library - Digital Library-Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte


Abbot said, in discussing the subject with Bessie when both sat
sewing in the nursery one night, after I was in bed, and, as they
thought, asleep, ‘Missis was, she dared say, glad enough to get rid
of such a tiresome, ill-conditioned child, who always looked as if
she were watching everybody, and scheming plots underhand.’
Abbot, I think, gave me credit for being a sort of infantine Guy

On that same occasion I learned, for the first time, from Miss
Abbot’s communications to Bessie, that my father had been a poor
clergyman; that my mother had married him against the wishes of
her friends, who considered the match beneath her; that my
grandfather Reed was so irritated at her disobedience, he cut her
off without a shilling; that after my mother and father had been
married a year, the latter caught the typhus fever while visiting
among the poor of a large manufacturing town where his curacy
was situated, and where that disease was then prevalent: that my
mother took the infection from him, and both died within a month
of each other.

Bessie, when she heard this narrative, sighed and said, ‘Poor Miss
Jane is to be pitied too, Abbot.’ ‘Yes,’ responded Abbot; ‘if she were
a nice, pretty child, one might compassionate her forlornness; but
one really cannot care for such a little toad as that.’

‘Not a great deal, to be sure,’ agreed Bessie: ‘at any rate, a beauty
like Miss Georgiana would be more moving in the same condition.’
‘Yes, I doat on Miss Georgiana!’ cried the fervent Abbot. ‘Little
darling!with her long curls and her blue eyes, and such a sweet
colour as she has; just as if she were painted!- Bessie, I could fancy
a Welsh rabbit for supper.’ ‘So could I-with a roast onion. Come,
we’ll go down.’ They went.
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