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A Tempting Offer : True moral integrity comes from within.
A Tempting Offer

Abridged from Mansfield Park by Jane Austen (1775-1817).

Henry Crawford has decided it would be fun to break Fanny Price’s heart by making her fall in love with him. He thinks that Fanny, whose life is guided by strict principle, will jump at the chance to mould someone in her own image — thereby revealing how little he understands of principle, or of Fanny.

Henry Crawford is speaking to Fanny Price.

“IS there anything I can do for you in town? I have half an idea of going into Norfolk again soon. I am not satisfied about Maddison. I am sure he still means to impose on me if possible, and get a cousin of his own into a certain mill, which I design for somebody else.

“The mischief such a man does on an estate, both as to the credit of his employer and the welfare of the poor, is inconceivable. It would be worse than simple to let him give me a hard-hearted, griping fellow for a tenant, instead of an honest man, to whom I have given half a promise already. Shall I go? Do you advise it?”

“I advise! You know very well what is right.”

“Yes. When you give me your opinion, I always know what is right. Your judgment is my rule of right.”

“Oh, no! do not say so. We have all a better guide in ourselves, if we would attend to it, than any other person can be. Good-bye; I wish you a pleasant journey to-morrow.”

Abridged from Mansfield Park by Jane Austen (1775-1817).

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Jane Austen (15) Extracts from Literature (93) Character and Conduct (30) Mansfield Park (novel) (2) Fiction (83)

Picture: © Ashley Dace, Geograph. Licence: CC-BY-SA 2.0. View original
Letheringsett Watermill in Norfolk was built in 1802, only a few years before ‘Mansfield Park’ was published. It is still in operation, both as Norfolk’s only flour-producing watermill and as a tourist attraction. A mill has stood on this site since at least the 14th century. See the mill’s website.
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By Jane Austen
(1775-1817)

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