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Post Info TOPIC: Caroline Penvenen/ Enys


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Date: Feb 13 9:40 AM, 2018
Caroline Penvenen/ Enys
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Moorland Rambler wrote:
I agree it was naive of Delmelza to even sit next to Adderley at the theatre, she should have persuaded Caroline to go there instead. You are right to say that Caroline doesn't do enough to chaperone Demelza in London. Such advice as treating a man's attentions as a joke - as something amusing - is encouraging her to adopt the demeanour of a coquette. Was Demelza really thinking about protecting Ross during that theatre visit? I doubt it. She certainly didn't realise Ross was watching every caress made by Adderley up and down her arm. It didn't take much to distract her from her supposed main concern of protecting him.

           


It isn't so much that she is trying to protect Ross as she is trying not to provoke Adderley to challenge him to a duel because of something she had done. She knows Ross will never refuse the challenge, but she also knows a man who has already killed two men in duels is more likely to prevail in a duel with a man who has never dueled and has more experience with a rifle than a pistol. I don't understand why she didn't tell Ross that first night that within minutes of meeting her, Adderley was telling her all about his prowess as a duelist and it made her very uncomfortable. If she had told him she was afraid Adderley was sizing him up for a duel, he might have recognized that she was in over her head again. 



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Tuesday 13th of February 2018 09:41:20 AM

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Dark Mare wrote:

Yes, it was ridiculously naive to give Adderley her arm, but Demelza is naive. And it got him to stop distracting her so she could watch the play without having to involve Ross. Have you forgotten that she was afraid there would be a duel between Ross and Adderley and she did not want to do anything to provoke Adderley and make that fear come true? Or that Caroline told her the way to deal with Adderley was to treat everything as a joke? If Caroline had been a better friend, she would have engineered things so she was sitting beside Adderley. He didn't stand to make a much-needed £100 from George for bedding her so he wouldn't have bothered her.

As for Ross' anger over Demelza's absence, he seemed more embarrassed about overreacting than relieved when he found out she had been at Caroline's. And there is no way he would have thrown her out. He needs her. Who else will take on all his responsibilities while he goes off to London?

As for "how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything they had built together," um, didn't he do exactly the same thing first? And produce an illegitimate child in the process? After they put their marriage back together, what did he do? Start neglecting her again. Because he was unwilling to completely come clean about the relationship with Elizabeth -- admit to her and to himself that most of it had been all in his head -- when she heard about the meeting in the cemetery and he didn't tell her about it until months after it happened, she put one and one together and got three. She thought they must be seeing each other again. Add to that Ross' apparent lack of interest in the fact that Armitage was paying too much attention to her and what is she supposed to think? That he trusts her completely to handle a situation that she has already told him has her feeling a bit lost? Or that he welcomes having someone to hand her off to whenever he and Elizabeth make their escape? They were both neglected children so of course they always expect to be abandoned. 



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Monday 12th of February 2018 04:54:51 PM


I agree it was naive of Delmelza to even sit next to Adderley at the theatre, she should have persuaded Caroline to go there instead. You are right to say that Caroline doesn't do enough to chaperone Demelza in London. Such advice as treating a man's attentions as a joke - as something amusing - is encouraging her to adopt the demeanour of a coquette. Was Demelza really thinking about protecting Ross during that theatre visit? I doubt it. She certainly didn't realise Ross was watching every caress made by Adderley up and down her arm. It didn't take much to distract her from her supposed main concern of protecting him.

As for his anger on the night after Hugh Armitage's death, he had a right to be angry. For a long time, Demelza had been deliberately evasive when Ross brought up the question of Hugh Armitage, which he did frequently from the time Armitage had arrived unexpectedly with the magnolia. Her 'not wanting to talk about it' or vague replies of 'I don't know myself' and similar retorts were just a smokescreen of deceit. Whatever Ross had done before does not excuse Demelza for her dishonesty, including the clandestine way she had received and then hid the poems. Any more claims from Demelza of Ross being secretive or evasive about Elizabeth would just be hypocrisy. Ross could and should have used his knowledge of the last poem to challenge Demelza explicitly. She would have been unable to use her 'I don't really know' reply and the resulting outpourings might have prevented the long months of festering mistrust and uncertainty that prevailed between them afterwards.

 

 

 

 



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Date: Feb 12 8:07 PM, 2018
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Interesting discussion.

Although Caroline might not have figured prominently in the Demelza-Armitage-Monk affairs, her perspective is critical. Also, as a contrast, while Caroline and Dwight are building their relationship, Ross and Demelza's is facing a crisis. Both Demelza and Ross have conversations with Caroline about HA which seemed to help each. And Caroline always seems to be in the background at crucial moments.   

 

Dark Mare--I do want to point out something that I think is too often overlooked when Ross has fingers pointed at him. He gets berated for fathering Valentine but Demelza could just as easily have gotten pregnant by Hugh Armitage. Luck of the draw.  But, of course, Demelza would have escaped censure because she had sex with Ross just two days after her sandy romp with HA. So, unless the kid came out spouting poetry, no one would have been the wiser and Demelza would still be the martyr. So I don't think that Valentine's existence can be used in the argument that Ross is an insensitive, uncaring clod. Let's judge them on equal faults; they were both insensitive. Ross did feel a great deal of guilt over not only hurting Demelza but, most importantly for me, for having a role in Valentine' abuse at the hands of dastardly George. He risked his life to save this troubled young man.

Stella--I agree with your comments.



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Date: Feb 12 4:48 PM, 2018
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Dark Mare wrote

As for "how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything they had built together," um, didn't he do exactly the same thing first? And produce an illegitimate child in the process? After they put their marriage back together, what did he do? Start neglecting her again. Because he was unwilling to completely come clean about the relationship with Elizabeth -- admit to her and to himself that most of it had been all in his head -- when she heard about the meeting in the cemetery and he didn't tell her about it until months after it happened, she put one and one together and got three. She thought they must be seeing each other again. Add to that Ross' apparent lack of interest in the fact that Armitage was paying too much attention to her and what is she supposed to think? That he trusts her completely to handle a situation that she has already told him has her feeling a bit lost? Or that he welcomes having someone to hand her off to whenever he and Elizabeth make their escape? They were both neglected children so of course they always expect to be abandoned. 

Dark Mare

By giving in to Armitage's pestering to have sex with her, Demelza betrayed Ross. Ross' adventure with Elizabeth did not have anything to do with Demelza's decision. I think we are told that Demelza's motives did not include revenge. In the Four Swans we are offered what seems to me a multitude of reasons for Demelza's decision. "Sheer physical attraction, which she felt from the moment they had first met last year; sadness, for the news he brought of himself; opportunity, which had settled on them like a strange bird, making unreality out of isolation and giving her the feeling that she was no one, except a nameless woman to be taken by a nameless man. (TFS, p. 429) is one reason. A poem arrives prompting Demelza to think again about the reasons she gave in. I have to say though that there are many reasons she identifies for her decision to give herself to Hugh and I'm not sure any of them make much sense.

I do not know why you say "Ross' apparent lack of interest" when he warns Demelza more than once, indicating how he would feel if she gave in to Armitage's overtures. 



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Monday 12th of February 2018 04:49:10 PM



-- Edited by Stella Poldark on Monday 12th of February 2018 04:49:58 PM

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Moorland Rambler wrote:

... Dark Mare - If Demelza had given Monk Adderley her arm to 'play with' at the theatre it was like providing a man like him with an hors d'oeuvre with a promise of the rest of the body to follow later - either ridiculously provocative or ridiculously naive.

Regarding Ross being angry at Demelza's visit to Caroline, I read it as being relief when he found out where she had been. His anger was directed at the whole Hugh Armitage affair, how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything that they had built together. Had it not been for her tears and the intervention of the children, he might have thrown her out after all and a separation might have made her realise more than she did the consequences of her actions.


You made my point when you told Hollyhock  "Demelza couldn't cope well with the flattering attentions of aristocratic gentlemen whether she fancied them or not. That was evident even as she grew older."

Yes, it was ridiculously naive to give Adderley her arm, but Demelza is naive. And it got him to stop distracting her so she could watch the play without having to involve Ross. Have you forgotten that she was afraid there would be a duel between Ross and Adderley and she did not want to do anything to provoke Adderley and make that fear come true? Or that Caroline told her the way to deal with Adderley was to treat everything as a joke? If Caroline had been a better friend, she would have engineered things so she was sitting beside Adderley. He didn't stand to make a much-needed £100 from George for bedding her so he wouldn't have bothered her.

As for Ross' anger over Demelza's absence, he seemed more embarrassed about overreacting than relieved when he found out she had been at Caroline's. And there is no way he would have thrown her out. He needs her. Who else will take on all his responsibilities while he goes off to London?

As for "how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything they had built together," um, didn't he do exactly the same thing first? And produce an illegitimate child in the process? After they put their marriage back together, what did he do? Start neglecting her again. Because he was unwilling to completely come clean about the relationship with Elizabeth -- admit to her and to himself that most of it had been all in his head -- when she heard about the meeting in the cemetery and he didn't tell her about it until months after it happened, she put one and one together and got three. She thought they must be seeing each other again. Add to that Ross' apparent lack of interest in the fact that Armitage was paying too much attention to her and what is she supposed to think? That he trusts her completely to handle a situation that she has already told him has her feeling a bit lost? Or that he welcomes having someone to hand her off to whenever he and Elizabeth make their escape? They were both neglected children so of course they always expect to be abandoned. 



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Monday 12th of February 2018 04:54:51 PM

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Moorland Rambler wrote:

In that heart to heart with Ross, Caroline showed empathy for Ross's feelings that Demelza had not shown since before her affair with HA. Their emotional closeness was a great contrast to the emotional distance between Ross and Demelza. I agree that what Caroline said to Ross was unfair, probably deliberately so, in order to smooth a path back to reconciliation with Demelza.

Caroline was in a position to assess the situation objectively and in that case, as well as giving Ross a talking to, she should have given Demelza a few blunt words about her lack of remorse and humility over the HA affair and the disastrous way she handled Monk Adderley.

Demelza couldn't cope well with the flattering attentions of aristocratic gentlemen whether she fancied them or not. That was evident even as she grew older. Even so, she should have understood Ross' suffering over her affair with HA and put up a polite brick wall to all the men in London society. Instead, her teasing of Monk Adderley inflamed him and almost led to her husband's death, leaving Ross badly injured and with an unnecessary death on his conscience. That death became Demelza's responsibility the moment she invited Adderley to the theatre.

Dark Mare - If Demelza had given Monk Adderley her arm to 'play with' at the theatre it was like providing a man like him with an hors d'oeuvre with a promise of the rest of the body to follow later - either ridiculously provocative or ridiculously naive.

Regarding Ross being angry at Demelza's visit to Caroline, I read it as being relief when he found out where she had been. His anger was directed at the whole Hugh Armitage affair, how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything that they had built together. Had it not been for her tears and the intervention of the children, he might have thrown her out after all and a separation might have made her realise more than she did the consequences of her actions.

 

Moorland Rambler,

Good points! Caroline did show Ross more empathy over the HA affair than Demelza ever did. Ross needed to talk it out and he finally had the opportunity to do so with Caroline. Demelza was always too defensive. I believe Ross shared thoughts with Caroline that he had never thought to share with anyone before--the depth of his disillusion, his admitting that he was jealous and his feeling that 'jealousy is an offence to one's spirit, it is a degrading sensation and should be stamped on'. Being able to voice his innermost feelings was liberating and allowed him to come to grips with them. 

I also think Caroline should have counseled Demelza on how to behave in London society. Demelza would not have allowed even Hugh Brodrugan the liberties that Monk took in public, and especially in front of her husband. After the arm pawing incident, when Ross let her know that her passive acceptance of Monk's attentions was inappropriate, she was indignant. A woman who was trying to rebuild martial trust would have rejected Monk's aggressive overtures and put up that 'brick wall' with alacrity to reassure her husband.



-- Edited by Hollyhock on Saturday 10th of February 2018 05:43:59 AM

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Interesting perspectives Dark Mare.    

I think we'd all love to know exactly how much of her soul Demelza bared in that 'tea and sympathy' session with Caroline. They kicked Dwight out and, darn it, he was too principled to eavesdrop. Now had it been Ross in that room, you can bet that one of the servants would have contrived to get an ear full and all of Cornwall would have been gossiping before he made it back home. But yes, given her state of mind, I do believe that Demelza confided that she'd slept with HA. Caroline would have already guessed anyhow. She had her suspicions about the depth of Demelza's feelings when she saw how she and HA interacted the night of his going away party--that was no Brodrugan flirtation. Then, when Caroline saw how distraught Demelza was, she knew. You might be sad about a friend's death, a friend you'd only seen 5 or 6 times in your life, but Demelza's reaction went way beyond that. Caroline liked HA too but she didn't fall apart over his demise. So she knew.

Caroline also knew about Ross and Elizabeth, but I don't think that came up. Demelza would have only mentioned it if she felt she needed to justify her own adultery. But she said she felt no remorse over that. So I believe Demelza's tête-à-tête was only about Hugh and herself. Related to that, I found it odd that in her conversation with Ross, Caroline never tried to reassure him about Demelza's feelings for himself. Instead she talked about how Demelza was deeply drawn to HA because of his virility and sensitivity--way to go Caroline, rub it in!

                ...do you still think she was too hard on Ross?

Considering the results, I don't think Caroline was too hard; her 'tough love' was what he needed to move on. But I do think she was unfair in assigning blame. The understanding and sympathy for what happened with HA and Monk should not have been reserved just for Demelza; Ross deserved some too. No one ever gives our hero a break.

(I still can't believe WG was mean enough to Ross to let him get angry that Demelza had gone to see Caroline when she found out about Hugh's death because she needed to talk to someone. What did he say? Something lame like "You could have talked to me." Except he wasn't home. He was in Truro getting elected to Parliament, something he hadn't bothered even to discuss with her. Why couldn't WG let Demelza at least reply, "You weren't home."? Of course she wouldn't have discussed it with him -- she likely would have expected that like her after May 9th, he wouldn't want to know the details -- but she was alone with her bad news and she didn't want to be so she had to leave home. Was it too much to let her state the obvious to make him feel like the insensitive fool he was being? Hugh had just died. This wasn't the same as his return to Trenwith early May 10th.) 

My take on this is that Ross didn't tell Demelza of his decision to stand for parliament because ever since she saw HA on his sick bed Demelza had no thought for anything else. Ross didn't tell her where he was going but neither did she ask, as she ordinarily would have done. Ross was no saint by any means but he also was not impervious to pain. A ton of stuff just had hit him unexpectedly--the discovery of the poem, the realization that Demelza might be adulterous, the parliament proposal--and he was trying to sort through it all. So for me his reticence was understandable. 

I also understand his being upset over not finding Demelza at home when he returned from the election. He was worried as well as upset. It was after dark, she'd been gone for hours, and no one knew where she was... Then she comes in all disheveled and tells Ross she's been wandering around the countryside grieving over Hugh and ended up sharing confidences with Caroline. So again her behavior showed Ross that she and Hugh were more than friends. Ross had a right to be angry. For me Demelza's lack of sensitivity for Ross was appalling.



-- Edited by Hollyhock on Saturday 10th of February 2018 04:00:20 AM

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Hollyhock, I agree with everything you say about Caroline and Demelza.

In that heart to heart with Ross, Caroline showed empathy for Ross's feelings that Demelza had not shown since before her affair with HA. Their emotional closeness was a great contrast to the emotional distance between Ross and Demelza. I agree that what Caroline said to Ross was unfair, probably deliberately so, in order to smooth a path back to reconciliation with Demelza.

Caroline was in a position to assess the situation objectively and in that case, as well as giving Ross a talking to, she should have given Demelza a few blunt words about her lack of remorse and humility over the HA affair and the disastrous way she handled Monk Adderley.

Demelza couldn't cope well with the flattering attentions of aristocratic gentlemen whether she fancied them or not. That was evident even as she grew older. Even so, she should have understood Ross' suffering over her affair with HA and put up a polite brick wall to all the men in London society. Instead, her teasing of Monk Adderley inflamed him and almost led to her husband's death, leaving Ross badly injured and with an unnecessary death on his conscience. That death became Demelza's responsibility the moment she invited Adderley to the theatre.

Dark Mare - If Demelza had given Monk Adderley her arm to 'play with' at the theatre it was like providing a man like him with an hors d'oeuvre with a promise of the rest of the body to follow later - either ridiculously provocative or ridiculously naive.

Regarding Ross being angry at Demelza's visit to Caroline, I read it as being relief when he found out where she had been. His anger was directed at the whole Hugh Armitage affair, how she had seemingly turned her back on him and destroyed everything that they had built together. Had it not been for her tears and the intervention of the children, he might have thrown her out after all and a separation might have made her realise more than she did the consequences of her actions.



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Hollyhock wrote:

Hi Dark Mare,

For me Carolyn was a breath of fresh air as she burst upon the scene, providing a welcome counterpoint to the anxiety of the Bodmin trial. Sympathizing with Dwight, I was as put off as he by her haughtiness when he was summoned to treat her dog. But when she softened her appeal I sensed that at heart she was just used to getting her way and not at all mean spirited.

Like you, the only time I was ever upset with Caroline was during that heart-to-heart she had with Ross in the Angry Tide. But my objection was that Caroline unfairly took Ross to task for his disillusionment with Demelza--first over her HA attachment and then her coquettish behavior with Monk. I felt that once again Demelza had escaped blame and, unlike Ross, was not held accountable for her actions.

I agree that Demelza should have been more forthcoming and found your remark about her throwing herself on land mines to save Ross interesting. However, I don't view her actions with Monk as self-sacrificing; she enjoyed the attention, which compounded the issue. Similarly, on other occasions, her efforts to help had the opposite effect--e.g., her well-intentioned role in Verity's elopement, which was disastrous for Ross; her strange attempt to influence the judge in Ross' trial, didn't help and might have backfired; her courageous effort to save Pascoe's bank, which added to Ross' debt. 

Anyway, I've since forgiven Caroline for her unfair finger pointing. In her usual direct way, she was just trying to snap Ross out of his depression. She intuitively understood that only a verbal slap in the face would make him stop brooding over the HA affair and move on. I think that Caroline of all people best understood Ross' temperment and her bluntness had the desired effect. Only she could have given him the perspective he needed; in the the process the bond between them deepened. Throughout the early books, Caroline's character development is a joy to watch.   

 

 

  Hi Hollyhock,

That's funny, I never got the sense that Demelza enjoyed Adderley's attention at all. The scene in the theater when she gave him her arm to play with so he would stop bothering her and let her pay attention to what was going on on stage said it all. She would do nothing to offend this man, but he made her uncomfortable. 

As for Caroline taking Ross to task, did you think she knew the whole story -- including May 9th, Elizabeth and Valentine? I thought she did. Demelza went to see Caroline right after she heard Hugh had died. I think she would have been too overwhelmed about Hugh's death to have been able to edit her thoughts and tell Caroline only what was public knowledge. If she was baring her soul, she had to include  Ross' encounter with Elizabeth in the cemetery and what she had thought it meant, and to explain that, she had to talk about May 9th. Caroline had been so curious about the Ross-Elizabeth dynamic early in the acquaintance that I can't imagine she would have shied away from drawing Demelza out -- discreetly, of course. This likely would be her only chance, and Caroline is not afraid to seize the day. 

I don't think the cemetery encounter was THE reason Demelza had sex with Hugh. (Although I do wonder how much her disgust with herself for not having slept with McNeill at Werry House returned to gnaw on her as Ross continued to hide his cemetery encounter with Elizabeth. It seems to me that she would have promised herself when she and Ross reconciled that if he ever did anything to give her reason to believe he was seeing Elizabeth again, she would not take the high road again and then hate herself for doing it.) The cemetery encounter was only one factor and likely less significant than the "Tea and Sympathy" element and her attraction to Hugh. But if you look at it that way -- Caroline knowing everything but not tipping her hand -- do you still think she was too hard on Ross?

(I still can't believe WG was mean enough to Ross to let him get angry that Demelza had gone to see Caroline when she found out about Hugh's death because she needed to talk to someone. What did he say? Something lame like "You could have talked to me." Except he wasn't home. He was in Truro getting elected to Parliament, something he hadn't bothered even to discuss with her. Why couldn't WG let Demelza at least reply, "You weren't home."? Of course she wouldn't have discussed it with him -- she likely would have expected that like her after May 9th, he wouldn't want to know the details -- but she was alone with her bad news and she didn't want to be so she had to leave home. Was it too much to let her state the obvious to make him feel like the insensitive fool he was being? Hugh had just died. This wasn't the same as his return to Trenwith early May 10th.) 



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Friday 9th of February 2018 06:26:26 AM



-- Edited by Dark Mare on Friday 9th of February 2018 06:28:02 AM

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Dark Mare wrote:

For me, Caroline is like Francis, someone I disliked early on and came to love after I got to know her/him better. She did really disappoint me once, however. When she was trying to explain Demelza's feelings about Monk Adderley to Ross, she failed to remind him she had been the one who had advised Demelza how to treat Adderley and Demelza had told him what she had been instructed to do. I think it would have been fairer to Demelza to bring that up before mentioning Hugh Armitage.

 

Hi Dark Mare,

For me Carolyn was a breath of fresh air as she burst upon the scene, providing a welcome counterpoint to the anxiety of the Bodmin trial. Sympathizing with Dwight, I was as put off as he by her haughtiness when he was summoned to treat her dog. But when she softened her appeal I sensed that at heart she was just used to getting her way and not at all mean spirited.

Like you, the only time I was ever upset with Caroline was during that heart-to-heart she had with Ross in the Angry Tide. But my objection was that Caroline unfairly took Ross to task for his disillusionment with Demelza--first over her HA attachment and then her coquettish behavior with Monk. I felt that once again Demelza had escaped blame and, unlike Ross, was not held accountable for her actions.

I agree that Demelza should have been more forthcoming and found your remark about her throwing herself on land mines to save Ross interesting. However, I don't view her actions with Monk as self-sacrificing; she enjoyed the attention, which compounded the issue. Similarly, on other occasions, her efforts to help had the opposite effect--e.g., her well-intentioned role in Verity's elopement, which was disastrous for Ross; her strange attempt to influence the judge in Ross' trial, didn't help and might have backfired; her courageous effort to save Pascoe's bank, which added to Ross' debt. 

Anyway, I've since forgiven Caroline for her unfair finger pointing. In her usual direct way, she was just trying to snap Ross out of his depression. She intuitively understood that only a verbal slap in the face would make him stop brooding over the HA affair and move on. I think that Caroline of all people best understood Ross' temperment and her bluntness had the desired effect. Only she could have given him the perspective he needed; in the the process the bond between them deepened. Throughout the early books, Caroline's character development is a joy to watch.   



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Stella Poldark wrote:

... She is also very preceptive of others I think, observing very accurately Ross with his strengths and weaknesses and Demelza's feelings particularly surrounding her encounter with Monk Adderley. 

 


 

For me, Caroline is like Francis, someone I disliked early on and came to love after I got to know her/him better. She did really disappoint me once, however. When she was trying to explain Demelza's feelings about Monk Adderley to Ross, she failed to remind him she had been the one who had advised Demelza how to treat Adderley and Demelza had told him what she had been instructed to do. I think it would have been fairer to Demelza to bring that up before mentioning Hugh Armitage. 

Then again, Demelza thwarted herself in the Adderley situation. She should have told Ross the night he introduced him to her what Adderley had told her about the buttons on his coat. (Each one contained a lock of hair from the last man he killed in a duel.) When she combined that with what Ross had told her about his first meeting with Adderley (he made the hairs on the back of his neck stand up), she rightly recognized the risk of Ross ending up in a duel with Adderley. Demelza was going to humor that man if it killed her because she was afraid he had already chosen Ross as his next target. To me, the whole Adderley affair was Demelza once again throwing herself on a land mine to protect Ross -- and to protect Ross from himself. 

I don't get the sense that she told Caroline about the buttons either, and I have to wonder whether her advice would be the same if she had.



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Thanks Stella. I also appreciate the example you selected. Your observation that Caroline 'gives herself permission' to go to London after baby Sarah's death is insightful. I had never thought about it that way but that is exactly what she does. She remains true to herself, no matter what society might have thought. She knew that the only way she could begin to heal was to escape the sadness of Killewarren and give herself and Dwight breathing space. Caroline faces significant challenges but never waivers in her love and loyalty. She is my favorite female character.   



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Hollyhock wrote:

My admiration for Caroline increases with each re-read of the series. She is clear-headed, astute, witty, perceptive, and uncompromisingly loyal.  In Warleggan, during one of their early morning rides, she challenges Dwight to discuss his feelings for her. He spills it all and lists what he feels are his disadvantages. She responds with what has to be one of WG's most insightful comments on the customs of the time (shades of Jane Austen!).

'You say you spent all your time learning to be a physician, and so had no time for the formal courtesies. I'm sorry for you. Dear, dear, I am. But do you know what I have spent my time learning to be? Why, an heiress, of course.'

'An heiress must learn all the courtesies. She must learn to draw and paint and play a musical instrument even if she's tone-deaf and only makes horrid noises. She must know French and perhaps a little Latin; she must understand how to carry herself and how to dress and how to ride and how to receive the compliments of her suitors. The one thing she never learns is anything about the successful marriage she is being prepared for. So you see, dear Dr. Enys, it would not be surprising if she also gave the impression of being two persons and with some higher justification than you. You say you don't know how to pay compliments to women or how to behave in the best manner. But at heart you must know women very well. How different in my case. I don't know men at all. I'm expected to be in love at the touch of a hand or at a prettily turned compliment. But until I marry - if my dear uncles have their way - I shall know nothing of what a man is really like.'

She paused and straightened up.

'From hearsay, I know what happens when people sleep together. It does not sound excessively genteel. One can take a risk in the gavotte and come to no harm. One should be a little more careful, I fancy, before choosing a bed partner for the rest of one's days.'

There was a long silence. The confession had moved Dwight in a new way. It was a new Caroline he suddenly saw - not supremely sure of herself and contemptuous of his efforts to please, but as unsure in her own way as he was, and hiding her unsureness behind a mask of laughter and ridicule. He was suddenly no longer infatuated but deeply in love. (Warleggan, MacMillan, pp. 58-59)

She is the character that would be the most fun to hang out with and would make a great BFF. Plus she wears cool clothes. 

 



-- Edited by Hollyhock on Tuesday 30th of January 2018 05:29:35 PM


 Hollyhock - I love your posts and all similar posts which focus on aspects of a character that I had, perhaps because of laziness, not really taken in. I learn so much from your posts and others' too. Your choice of this piece from Warleggan contains so much food for thought. I think it shows the courage of Caroline to reveal so much about herself. It is interesting that such a revelation causes Dwight to become deeply in love with her.

She is also very preceptive of others I think, observing very accurately Ross with his strengths and weaknesses and Demelza's feelings particularly surrounding her encounter with Monk Adderley. 

When, after her child dies, she feels she has to go to London, she gives herself permission to do that. She was a character way beyond her time.



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My admiration for Caroline increases with each re-read of the series. She is clear-headed, astute, witty, perceptive, and uncompromisingly loyal.  In Warleggan, during one of their early morning rides, she challenges Dwight to discuss his feelings for her. He spills it all and lists what he feels are his disadvantages. She responds with what has to be one of WG's most insightful comments on the customs of the time (shades of Jane Austen!).

'You say you spent all your time learning to be a physician, and so had no time for the formal courtesies. I'm sorry for you. Dear, dear, I am. But do you know what I have spent my time learning to be? Why, an heiress, of course.'

'An heiress must learn all the courtesies. She must learn to draw and paint and play a musical instrument even if she's tone-deaf and only makes horrid noises. She must know French and perhaps a little Latin; she must understand how to carry herself and how to dress and how to ride and how to receive the compliments of her suitors. The one thing she never learns is anything about the successful marriage she is being prepared for. So you see, dear Dr. Enys, it would not be surprising if she also gave the impression of being two persons and with some higher justification than you. You say you don't know how to pay compliments to women or how to behave in the best manner. But at heart you must know women very well. How different in my case. I don't know men at all. I'm expected to be in love at the touch of a hand or at a prettily turned compliment. But until I marry - if my dear uncles have their way - I shall know nothing of what a man is really like.'

She paused and straightened up.

'From hearsay, I know what happens when people sleep together. It does not sound excessively genteel. One can take a risk in the gavotte and come to no harm. One should be a little more careful, I fancy, before choosing a bed partner for the rest of one's days.'

There was a long silence. The confession had moved Dwight in a new way. It was a new Caroline he suddenly saw - not supremely sure of herself and contemptuous of his efforts to please, but as unsure in her own way as he was, and hiding her unsureness behind a mask of laughter and ridicule. He was suddenly no longer infatuated but deeply in love. (Warleggan, MacMillan, pp. 58-59)

She is the character that would be the most fun to hang out with and would make a great BFF. Plus she wears cool clothes. 

 



-- Edited by Hollyhock on Tuesday 30th of January 2018 05:29:35 PM

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Caroline Penvenen/ Enys.



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"Perfection is a full stop .... Ever the climbing but never the attaining Of the mountain top." W.G.

 

 

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