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Revisiting Stonehenge: Marriage, Masculinity, and Burney's Sentimental Hero in the Wanderer


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REVISITING STONEHENGE: MARRIAGE, MASCULINITY, AND BURNEY'S SENTIMENTAL HERO IN THE WANDERER By J. KEVIN JORDAN A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLOR IDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA 2003

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Copyright 2003 by J. Kevin Jordan

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For the two EAs who taught me the meaning of masculinity

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ACKNOWLEDGMENTS First of all, I would like to thank Dr. Brian McCrea, who has guided me through two degrees and much more. I would also like to thank Dr. Patricia Craddock for helping me to tie up the loose ends. Secondly, I want to thank Erin Sumner and Elliot Sumner-Jordan for having the patience and care to endure my affair with Frances Burney for so many years. I also want to thank my parents for trusting me when said I wanted to read novels in college, my brother for always saying so much with so few words, and the rest of my family for smiling when I talked about my projects. Finally, a giant "thank you" goes to all of my Gainesville friends (past and present), especially Michael "whatnot" Dietz, Julie "iron chef" Sinn, Michael "neighbor" Loughran, Chris "indigo" Jones, Val "emerald isle" Lietner, and Jon "sergeant" Stern, who cut me loose or kept me anchored at all the right times over the years. iv

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v TABLE OF CONTENTS page ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ................................ ................................ ................................ .. iv ABSTRACT ................................ ................................ ................................ ....................... vi CHAPTER 1 THE WANDERER FINDS A HOME ................................ ................................ ........... 1 2 MARRIAGE AND THE SENTIMENTAL MAN ................................ ....................... 6 3 THE IMPACT OF COARSENESS ................................ ................................ ............ 13 4 THE BEST O F MEN ................................ ................................ ................................ .. 17 LIST OF REFERENCES ................................ ................................ ................................ ... 31 BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ................................ ................................ ............................. 33

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Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts REVISITING STONEHENGE: MARRIAGE, MASCULINITY, AND BURNEY'S SENTIMENTAL HERO IN THE WANDERER By J. Kevin Jordan May 2003 Chair: Dr. Brian McCrea Major Department: English Since the middle of the 1980s, much of the psychoanalyses of Frances Burney have focused on her relationship with her father and the burning of her juvenilia. Critics have used these two major areas of Burney's life to understand her fiction. No matter the approach, most scholars have expressed some sort of dismay with the unsatisfactory males (heroes?) that appear throughout Burney's novels. Margaret Anne Doody describes the male characters of The Wanderer as "all weak men." However, these characters are judged against standards that rest in the established rules of a patriarchal society. We might reevaluate the 'strength' of Burney's males by examining a lesser-explored aspect of her life. Little attention has been given to perhaps Burney's most important relationship, that of her marriage to Alexandre d'Arblay. In d'Arblay we may see another standard by which we may be able to assess the 'strength' of Burney's heroes. Burney and d'Arblay vi

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had a relationship that revolved around sharing of feelings and sentiment. Their marriage resembles a union based on companionship, rather than social, economic, or political strategy. Their union also represents a larger shift in marriage practice. It is a union termed a companionate marriage. By looking at Burney's 'real-life hero,' we may find another perspective by which to view Burney's fictional heroes, and thus vindicate their characters. Most notably, Albert Harleigh, the hero of The Wanderer, shares many of the characteristics that attracted Burney to d'Arblay. The 'weakness' of Burney's heroes actually involves sentimentality. Harleigh is too feeling. His failings as a satisfactory 'hero' come at moments where his sentiments disable him. However, Burney's journals reveal an attraction to the sentiment she finds in d'Arblay, a sentiment that causes Harleigh to be declared weak. Burney describes d'Arblay with a vocabulary that revolves around his sentiments and feelings. The strength Burney sees in d'Arblay mirrors the 'weakness' of her fictional heroes. According to the literary tradition of heroes, Harleigh certainly isn't one. However, by looking closely at the 'failings' of Burney's heroes and the reasons d'Arblay proved such a good husband, we may reevaluate the appeal and strength of the Burney hero. vii

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CHAPTER 1 THE WANDERER FINDS A HOME Frances Burney lived during a period that provided a wealth of subjects on which she could turn her talented and keen eye. Critics and historians identify the midto late-eighteenth century as a transitional period for many social, political, and economic institutions. Burney's novels reflect and comment upon all of these changes. She witnessed the aftermath of massive political revolution first hand while living in France from 1802-1812. She wrote The Wanderer during her time in France and sets it "During the dire reign of the terrific Robespierre." She heard the rising voices of the feminist movement in Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Hays. These voices sound in Burney's fiction through characters such as Elinor Jodrell in The Wanderer. She saw the social effects of the decline of patriarchy; all of her novels include decaying patriarchal figures. From Mr. Villars in Evelina to the Bishop in The Wanderer, figures of male authority are absent, while in Camilla Mr. Tyrold is dominated by his wife. The eponymous Cecilia is left with three surrogate fathers, each unsatisfying in a different way. Despite the richness of her insight and commentary, Burney remained a relatively minor figure in eighteenth century studies until the mid-1980s. Then Burney criticism exploded. Kristina Straub, Margaret Ann Doody, and Julia Epstein published monographs devoted to Burney in 1987, 1988, and 1989, respectively. With a complete edition of Burney's journals and letters available, much of the criticism included significant references to her biography. Critics tended to focus upon the difficulty of Burney's existence as a female author and the feminism(s) found in Burney's journals and 1

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2 fiction. In the early 90s, Burney's work (and critical discussion of it) expanded yet again. Eighteenth Century Fiction published a volume devoted to Burney's work (3.4, 1991): Much of the criticism dealt with Evelina and again focused largely on psychobiography, with most of the attention directed at the relationship between Burney and her father, Dr. Charles Burney. Fortunately, critics continue to expand both the Burney canon and the basis of her interest. Once Burney's least well-known and least discussed novel, The Wanderer has been receiving more critical attention in the last few years. Upon its publication in 1814, Burney's last novel met with severe criticism from reviewers such as William Hazlitt and John Wilson Croker. However, recent critics have been finding much that is positive to say about Burney's final work. In the last five years, more articles that focus on The Wanderer, as opposed to all of Burney's other works, have appeared in Eighteenth Century Fiction. Justine Crump, Sara Silih, and Patricia Meyer Spacks have studied respectively the moral debates between Harleigh and Elinor, the role of race and its implications for Ellis, and propriety as it creates both oppression and protection for women. Also, Helen Thompson recently published an essay in ELH that reaffirms the importance of the structure and length of The Wanderer. Burney's last novel is finally receiving the attention that it has deserved. As the flow of Burney criticism moves to include The Wanderer, critics have displayed little of the biographical concern that has dominated the majority of articles and books about Burney and her work. I would like to at once join in the flourishing critical debate about The Wanderer and revisit some of the earlier critiques of Burney's heroes. Doody, Straub, and Epstein share a general notion that Burney's novels reveal her desire to fight the social hierarchies established by patriarchal power. Moreover, Doody assigns

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3 Burney a permanent trajectory toward Jacobin loyalties. These critics also find Burney's heroes to be weak and unsatisfying. Doody describes Albert Harleigh, the hero of The Wanderer, as "the last and least attractive of a series of Burney heroes." In essence, "He does not satisfy our ideas of the 'hero' of a love story---who ought to be handsome, dashing, strong, and courageous, if a trifle self-willed" (W xxiii). Burney's heroes are flawed in that they fail to live up to the expectations established by the heroes of the romance tradition. If Burney is to subvert patriarchal order, how are her heroes to survive a comparison to its standards? Claudia Johnson offers another explanation for the weakness of the Burney hero. What critics have called weakness may be reconsidered as sentimentality. Rather than being dashing and self-willed, the Burney hero acts with punctilio and consideration. Rather than commanding respect based on aristocratic status, he shies away from confrontation and, in the case of Harleigh, can even be disabled by it. Johnson too is disappointed by the Burney hero. She recognizes the sentiment that possesses him, but finds that sentiment to be yet another location for male authority. Johnson argues that the feminization of men, when accompanied by the stagnation of gender roles for females, offers little alternative for a character such as The Wanderer's Juliet. In the very different views of Johnson and Doody, the Burney hero proves to be equally unsatisfactory. Might there be a way to reevaluate the Burney hero such that this type of character, when Burney consistently returned to in her fiction, achieves credibility and can stand as a respectable, satisfactory partner for her heroines? Because they measure her heroes against the heroes of the romance and the ideals of sentimentality, most critics also find the marriages that conclude her novels quite unsatisfactory. Why did Burney

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4 consistently end her novels this way, and why do the grooms all have sentimentality in common? Recent works by G. J. Barker-Benfield and Tim Fulford explore changing notions of masculinity during the eighteenth century. The standard for masculinity moved from dashing, physically adept heroes in the romance tradition, to caring, thinking, and feeling men who were considerate and understanding. This, along with Lawrence Stone's study of shifting marriage practices in eighteenth century England, provides a new way to consider Burney's heroes. Also, while much has been said concerning Burney's relationship with her father, very little notice has been given to, perhaps, Burney's most important relationship: her marriage to Alexandre d'Arblay. Burney and d'Arblay achieved a connection that resulted in a very satisfying (for them) "companionate marriage" (Stone's term). I would like to explore more closely the place of Burney's marriage and the importance it held in her life and fiction. By viewing her heroes through the characteristics of one Burney's most important relationships, especially in light of shifting marriage practices and changing definitions of masculinity, we might better understand those heroes' perceived weakness and reevaluate their strengths. To suggest a new way to view Burney's heroes, I would like to discuss two main issues. First, the shifting attitudes toward marriage and masculinity. Stone provides substantial evidence and commentary regarding "the rise of the companionate marriage." The failing patriarchal system resulted in a jointed change in the nature of marriages and the personal characteristics necessary to maintain them. Barker-Benfield's work extends beyond Stone and more specifically examines the shift in male behavior and masculinity. The sociohistoric moment described by Stone and Barker-Benfield sets a background

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5 capable of illuminating the reasons for Burney's heroes' perceived weakness. Second, I will show that Burney had reason to understand the dangers of traditional masculinity, a desire a companion representative of this new version of masculinity. Burney's brother, James Burney, and brother-in-law, Molesworth Phillips, provided her with examples of the difficulty in filial and marital relationships with old order males. James and Phillips both went to sea as young men and formed the violent and gruff tendencies that were necessary for their posts, but damaging to domestic felicity. Perhaps most devastating to Burney, was Phillip's horrid treatment of his wife, her sister, Susan. Susan's marriage resulted in estrangement from her family, extreme financial difficulties, and constant fear of her violently tempered husband. In contrast, d'Arblay also entered a traditional career as a military man but ultimately came to represent a version of masculinity that was quite distant from that of Phillips and James Burney. Thus, the marriage of Burney and d'Arblay looks quite different than her sister's. Through these biographical and sociohistorical situations, I will suggest a new approach to Burney's heroes, specifically Albert Harleigh.

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CHAPTER 2 MARRIAGE AND THE SENTIMENTAL MAN The institution of marriage offers a difficult subject for discussion in that it is at once both an extremely private, yet utterly public matter. Not only were marriage practices shifting in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, but they were also highly debated and discussed publicly through fiction, marriage manuals, and periodicals. Stone looks to public records and marriage manuals, while Barker-Benfield focuses largely on fiction. Regardless, in each case, the institution of marriage reflects a fundamental shift in the nature of ideal male/female relations. As the nature of such relationships changed, so did the attitudes and behaviors expected from the individuals taking part. Most importantly, these changes resulted in a new version of masculinity, one that valued a "sensible" and "sentimental" man. During the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries the widespread (among the propertied and moneyed classes) marriage based on political or economic union began to decline in its popularity. Parents lost control over the unions of their children. Social, political, and economic alliances worked out by parents took a second seat the affections of children for their mates. Parents' mandate changed to parents' permission. These developments are summarized in Stone's phrase the "rise of the companionate marriage." However, the rise was a slow one. "In 1727, Daniel Defoe complained that still in his own time 'the money and the maidenhead is the subject of our meditations,' the result being 'how much marriage, how little friendship'" (Stone p. 217). Defoe highlights the important distinction between friendship and marriage that plagued many relationships. 6

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7 With little 'friendship' involved, successful (in a sentimental and personal, hence companionate sense) marriages were scarce, or at least dependent on parents' judgments, rather than those of the man and woman involved. Defoe also implies an expectation of friendship in a marriage. Stone cites the social effect of such, "Paradoxically enough, the rise of separation in the eighteenth century, like the rise of divorces in the twentieth, is an indication of rising emotional expectations from marriage. In periods when expectations are low, frustrations will also be low" (p. 223). Couples were no longer expected to find all of their personal fulfillment outside of the domestic sphere. By 1780, Stone explains "that. . for the first time in history romantic love became a respectable motive for marriage among the propertied classes" (p. 190). Hopes of a companionate marriage required a change in the behaviors and personalities of both men and women. I would like to focus on the necessary change in the manners of men, one which was necessary for men to prove successful companions. Ultimately, a new understanding of masculinity would replace the selfishness and coarseness that pervaded male behavior within the old patriarchal order. A female author of an 1846 marriage manual warned of "the intense coarseness of the male character" (Stone p. 250). Stone attributes the passage's emphasis not to "the male sexual drive, but rather to masculine selfishness, desire for autocratic domestic authority, and contempt for common little politeness in the treatment of a wife" (p. 250). Women were right to fear marriage. Men were still being educated in a manner that produced despotic characters groomed to be the head of a patriarchal system. Many of the behavioral 'problems' exhibited by British males began as early as grammar school and continued into the universities. The inequality of the educational

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8 system taught boys early on that 'autocratic' authority was theirs for the taking. Anthony Fletcher notes, "Their schooling and further education at university, the Inns of Court and through the Grand Tour, was the foundation of the gentry's patriarchal command of English society" (p. 298). For most, "The grammar school was formative for a large number of boys, lifting them from the home into a future world of leisured authority" (p. 300). With schools serving the purpose of maintaining established social and gender hierarchies, boys were shaped into characters who found acceptance and defined themselves through public display, rather than through domestic grace. Fletcher also notes the common practice (supported by many educators) in schools that allowed and even encouraged boys to learn courage and bravery through fighting and harsh physical punishment (pp. 307-8). The lives of school-boys rested "in a kind of 'primitive subculture,' engaged in immorality, indiscipline, riot, and rebellion" (Barker-Benfield p. 46). Education linked violent and unruly behavior with the strict honor codes of the gentry. The rite of passage for young men supported injurious liberty and lack of self-control. Moreso, the culture of school-boys established the public sphere as the locale for the definition of character. Their masculinity was codified in violence and traditional notions of manliness. Unfortunately, the violence that inhabited the school yards extended into the streets, and onto helpless victims. The university was a place where students joined "the ranks of rakes and rioters." Barker-Benfield writes, "There innocent young lads were corrupted, introduced to drinking, gambling, and prodigal spending as well as sex. The university was where young men, sexually maturing beings away from home and subject to peer pressure, could become 'men of the world'" (p. 46). England's schools were

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9 producing violently self-concerned men. The blurring of the rake/student distinction became increasingly dangerous when students formed groups intent on public assault. These groups frequently fought with the watch, terrorized women, beat gentlemen and beggars alike, and took advantage of the handicapped (Barker-Benfield p. 47). Naturally, any woman (or other person for that matter) would be wise to fear "the coarseness of the male character." Clearly a new male figure was in order. Westenhall Wilkes, in an edition published in 1740 that ran to eight editions through 1766, advises "his readers to seek in a husband such qualities as 'a virtuous disposition, a good understanding, an even temper, an easy fortune, and an agreeable person'" (Stone p. 219). "The campaign for the reformation of manners" began late in the seventeenth century (Barker-Benfield p. 55). Great efforts were employed to curtail the rampant violent behavior of men in the streets of London. As the reading public and the population of London skyrocketed (relatively speaking) around the same time, a large part of the 'campaign' centered upon the publication of pamphlets and papers. The Tatler and The Spectator intended "to 'recover' the 'age' out of its desperate state of vice and folly" (Barker-Benfield p. 61). "Addison, Steele, and their fellow reformers saw themselves facing the dissolution of any standard of morality and taste" (Barker-Benfield p. 61). Particularly, they wanted to make room for a new social position that mitigated the dichotomy between the rake and the Puritan. Addison, especially, attempted to "enliven morality with wit, and to temper wit with morality" (The Spectator No. 10). In an effort to tame rakish behavior, he attempts to place philosophy in "clubs and assemblies, at tea tables and coffeehouses." Such

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10 reformers wanted to replace rowdy public behavior with thoughtful conversations. If men were busy matching wits, then they were not terrorizing innocent people. The Spectator also tried to shift notions of pleasure from outward behavior to internal reflection. It "claimed that it controlled special keys to unlock still higher degrees of pleasure, including the mastery of ancient languages as well as those of Christian morality and self-discipline" (Barker-Benfield p. 62). Reformers made widespread attempts at affecting change across many levels of society. Addison and Steele also proposed of education for women and the newly rich. Addison implies that the new merchant class suffered from idleness (of intellectual pursuit) and lack of education. He imagines himself educating "the blanks of society...[those] altogether unfurnished with ideas." He "will daily instill into them such sound and wholesome sentiments as shall have a good effect on their conversation for the ensuing twelve hours" (my emphasis). Addison focused on the reformation (or creation) of proper sentiment in order to change the intellectual and social landscape of London city life. For the most part, reformers look toward education to rectify the ill-effects of school-house culture. Writers of fiction took another direction as they expressed the need for a change in the manners of men. Barker-Benfield notes a fairly standard method of conversion in "sentimental fiction." With more than strict didacticism in mind, most authors contrived a system to convert men's manners along with their religious beliefs. Licentious men became at once respectable and religious (Barker-Benfield p. 250). Barker-Benfield sees Mr. B in Pamela as an example of such a conversion, while Clarissa offers Lovelace as a failed attempt at conversion (pp. 250-4). For Barker-Benfield, the conversion of these male characters occurs in such a manner that the newly shaped male became a reflection

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11 of women's wishes for their treatment by men. "The creation of men of feeling was the expression of 'collective wish fulfillment,' and of deep need on the part of women" (Barker-Benfield p. 247). The conversion, however much it led to better treatment of women of "quality," did nothing to alleviate any real inequality that existed, either socially or legally. Men still maintained legal authority as husband and father (an issue that would plague the marriage of Burney's sister, Susan). Conversion may not have been the ideal route to a sound marriage, but the new ideal man was endowed with a series of characteristics that would encourage the proper treatment of those around him. Heroes of sentimental fiction "identified with Christian piety and goodness" and "opposed gambling, oaths, drinking, idleness, cruelty to animals, and other elements of popular male culture" (Barker-Benfield p. 247-8). Gone were the ways of dueling and brutality displayed in earlier fictions. The new hero also showed a concern for the preferences and objections of the women around him. The sentimental hero commanded a refined display of manners with 'delicacy' and thus became a better candidate for a companionate marriage. By the eighteenth century, women and men alike began to affect change in the practice of marriage and the personal behavior necessary to make it successful. The works of Stone and Barker-Benfield (among others) illuminate the emergence of, and demand for, an new time of masculinity. Failing patriarchal systems placed much more power in the hands of surviving male heirs, who in turn exercised a greater right to choose their companions. As women were able to follow suit in expressing their preference in a companion, their dislike of rakish brutes settled in the minds of men. With marriage practices changing and expectations of men encouraging more delicate

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12 traits, a new kind of hero needed to emerge and break free from the old romance tradition.

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CHAPTER 3 THE IMPACT OF COARSENESS While Burney would have been familiar with the possibilities for a male's conversion in fiction, her experiences in reality harshly taught her otherwise. Burney and her family were enraged and embarrassed by the treatment of her beloved sister, Susan, and the behavior of her brother James. In each of these situations, 'the coarseness of the male character' directly contributed to the pain of Burney and her family. In Susan's case, the marriage to Molesworth Phillips resulted in a life of fear and danger; one which caused her to be separated from Burney for the last five years of her life. James created a stir in the Burney family when he left his wife and children to live with his half-sister, Sarah Harriet Burney. Both of these men played an important role in Burney's life, and left impressions that showed the true cruelty that the wrong type of husband could bring. After James' naval career ended in 1785, he soon married Sally Payne. However, by 1798 he had grown tired of his wife and children and spent most of his time visiting his half-sister, Sarah (who was still living at home with Dr. Burney). After Dr. Burney had refused him refuge from his unhappy home life, James and Sarah ran away together. The nature of the relationship between James and Sarah is still very unclear. Early readers have assumed that the relationship was sexual in nature. However, Lorna J. Clark makes a very strong case that the relationship was much less scandalous in nature (p. xxxv-xxxvii). Regardless, James left his wife to care for their children (the youngest of whom was less than two) during his five-year absence. While James did eventually 13

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14 return to his family, Burney would have seen the precarious situation of a mother and wife abandoned by her husband. The exploits of Phillips proved to be much more traumatic for Susan, and by extension, Burney. His treatment of Susan eventually lead to her estrangement from her beloved sister for the five years that preceded her death. However, his cruelty began much earlier. Less than 14 years after their marriage in 1782, "Phillips, now unfaithful, tyrannical, and cruel, took complete possession of their son, sending him away to school and preventing Susanna from seeing him" (Doody, LW p. 282). Her sorrow only increased in 1796, when Phillips forced her to return to Ireland, away from all of her family and friends. Phillips had the law in his favor. He could compel his wife to accompany him wherever he might choose to go. Divorce was unheard of for ladies, and legal separation was an even more precarious option. If Susan obtained a legal separation, she almost certainly would have lost her children. She had no choice but to go with him. In Ireland, Phillips continued his adulterous pursuits publicly and shamelessly. Susan's "life in Ireland became increasingly lonely and more miserable, as she was subjected to Phillips' harsh temper and perhaps even to physical violence" (Doody, LW p. 284). Her health steadily declined until in 1799, Phillips had no choice but to grant her travel back to England. The couple made it to Chester in late December. However, with Burney and d'Arblay en route, Susan died on January 6 of the new year. Susan was Burney's first and most important correspondent throughout her life. The bulk of Burney's letters are addressed to Susan. She also acted as the go-between for Burney and d'Arblay during their courtship. Susan was an ever present figure in Burney's life, no matter their distance. Her death was devastating to Burney. "This was the

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15 greatest bereavement Burney had known hitherto. She never got over it. She kept the sixth of January as a sorrowful anniversary for ever after, even when her father rebuked her for the practice" (Doody, LW p. 286). Certainly the treatment of Susan served as a warning for Burney. His brutishness and cruelty exemplified the dangers in a marriage to a man who lacked sensibility. James was the only member of the Burney family who did not hold Phillips personally responsible for Susan's untimely death. Ironically enough, James was the only member of the family who had seen Phillips' violent side prior to his ill treatment of Susan. Both men sailed through the east Pacific as part of Captain Cook's crew. They were comrades in dangerous sea travels and violent confrontations with the people they encountered. Harmon recounts the circumstance by which Phillips gained fame for his bravery in battle. As Lieutenant of Marines, Phillips accompanied Cook to shore to settle a dispute with the natives. A skirmish broke out in which Cook was fatally wounded. As the other Marines fled the shore, Phillips stayed behind and is thought to have shot Cook's assailant. He returned to England a hero. James soon introduced his good friend to the rest of his family. Phillips immediately took a liking to Susan, and married her two months after their introduction. In that time, the Burney family could find nothing suspect about Phillips. Harmon notes that, while Dr. Burney was a bit skeptical about the large income Phillips was due to inherit, all other opinions of him were favorable, if not exceptional. It would seem that he had been 'converted' from his sea going behaviors. However, the conventions of fiction did not operate for Phillips. His character was formed at sea, and remained unchanged.

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16 James and Phillips indirectly exposed Burney to the dangers of traditional masculinity (a naval career was a common option for sons not inheriting a title). The early portion of their lives shaped the men they would become, and the fate their domestic lives would realize: They had seen firsthand, and been threatened with, violent death; they had endured extremes of weather and the privations of long sea voyages (where fricassee f rat was a delicacy only the officers were allowed); they had been among the first Europeans to set eyes on the other-worldly icescapes of both the Arctic and the Antarctic, had met and consorted with exotic and utterly foreign people, and had doubtless seen, perhaps joined in, countless scenes of coarseness and brutality as well as of heroism and comradeship. From the 1780s onward, James Burney showed signs of disturbance, restlessness with his home life and an inability to further his career; Phillips metamorphosed into a gambler, drinker, and philanderer. (Harman p. 157) No matter the optimism about male conversion that was common in the fiction Burney read, these real examples would have impacted Burney.

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CHAPTER 4 THE BEST OF MEN Alexandre d'Arblay, much like James Burney and Molesworth Phillips, sought a career in the military. However, the similarities stop there. D'Arblay's career path did not leave him hopelessly cruel and selfish. Rather, the French Revolution forced him out of his military mold and provided the converting force that Barker-Benfield locates in religion. As d'Arblay's life progressed, he became further removed from his initial career, pursuing companionate marriage with Burney--one that she happily entered late in her life. Prior to the publication of Evelina, Burney wrote that she would need "particular inducements" to give her hand in marriage (Straub p. 53). Straub writes, "Marriage was, in Burney's view, a risk with potentially catastrophic results that was probably better avoided than taken" (p. 53). D'Arblay made Burney want to take the risk. At once frightening, and later rewarding, Burney's opinion of marriage seems to be difficult to place. Ultimately, her decision for herself and her heroines revolved around the type of suitor. While most earlier critics find the Burney male to be weak and unsatisfying, Barker-Benfield offers a different view. He places Evelina's Lord Orville within the tradition of sentimental heroes, but also apart from its conventions. "Unlike Belmont, Belford [of Clarissa], and Mr. B [of Pamela], Orville has not had to be converted. He has been unambiguously a man of feeling all along, identifying himself thoroughly with the reformation of male manners" (p. 255). Burney's heroes begin as sentimental 17

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18 characters, expressing the "better (sic) it would be if men never became rakes at all" (Barker-Benfield p. 255). The Burney hero doesn't satisfy the romantic ideal espoused by Doody, or quite fit the mold of the sentimental hero described by Barker-Benfield. However, an examination of d'Arblay (and Burney's marriage) offers another version of Barker-Benfield's man of feeling, by which we can evaluate the Burney hero. Rather than a reformed rake, d'Arblay exhibits the qualities of the man of feeling, but reaches them through another means. His 'reform' comes by way of natural sentiment and taste, lack of professional responsibility, and a desire for domestic felicity. This is the ideal for a Burney husband. Burney remained a single woman until she was 41 years of age. By 1792, she had resigned herself to a single life. However, Burney met d'Arblay in January of 1793 and married him six months later. The years immediately following her marriage seem to have been the happiest of her life. Burney's joy in marriage to d'Arblay rested in a seemingly deep attraction to and affection for his manners, interests, and sentiments. These traits mirror those of the man of feeling, required for a companionate marriage. D'Arblay represents a new male who emerged from a growing resentment for traditional aristocratic (and hence patriarchal) roles in marriage. Frances Burney clearly reveals the dilemma of a woman in desire of a companion. In 1775, Burney received a proposal from a suitor named Thomas Barlow. In her journal, she recounts her fears that her father might "persuade" or "advise" her to marry him: I felt, too, that I had no argumentative objections. . his Character, disposition, situation-I knew nothing against-but O!-I felt he was no companion for my heart!-I wept like an infant-Eat nothing-seemed as if already married-& passed the whole day in more misery than, merely on my own account, I ever did before in my life,-except upon the loss of my

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19 own beloved mother-& ever revered and most dear Grandmother. (Troide, II, 146-7) Burney's fear of marriage to Barlow runs so deep that only the deaths of her mother and grandmother provide an analogy for her feelings. Patricia Meyer Spacks attributes Burney's reaction to fear for the loss of her freedom (p164). But Burney suffers so intently because she does not see Barlow as a companion for her heart. Fortunately for Burney, d'Arblay later will serve as that companion. But what of this companion? Burney's interest in d'Arblay rested upon a companionship based on his sentiments and personal interests. A French migr who had served in the army of King Louie XVI, d'Arblay arrived in England having fled France, leaving behind his estate and many friends. Burney met him at Norbury Park where he stayed with her close friends, the Lockes, and married him only six months later. Their brief courtship and subsequent marriage relied very much on the notion of companionship. Moreover, d'Arblay's sentimentality seems to be one of his attractions for Burney. Her union with d'Arblay resulted in many outside difficulties and pressures, but his companionship was her chosen route to happiness. Burney's correspondence with d'Arblay, family, and friends reveals much about why he proved such an attractive husband. Through the first two months after their introduction, Burney takes special note of the understandable dejection displayed by d'Arblay due to the course of the revolution in France. She describes his "tender Heart" and "generous delicacy." Burney writes that "these immediate French sufferers here interest us, and these alone have been able to interest me at all" (Hemlow, II, 9). Amidst the emotional turmoil, she is able to form a special friendship with d'Arblay. For Burney, he soon becomes one of "the best of men."

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20 Readers of Burney's journals may have a difficult time fixing the character of d'Arblay. A successful French military officer, d'Arblay frequently seems an unlikely soldier. Burney describes him to her father, "With this, his Military portion, he is passionately fond of literature, a most delicate critic in his own language, well versed in both Italian & German, and a very elegant Poet" (Hemlow, II, 19). Typically, d'Arblay's learning would coincide with military success. However, Burney never mentions his military life as an attraction. Moreover, only his dejection as a fleeing political refugee seems attractive. Burney's descriptions of d'Arblay revolve around a language of sentiment and feeling. D'Arblay appears as a figure removed from his military past, who acts first as a companion and friend to Burney. Once married, d'Arblay continues to distance himself from his previous career. D'Arblay's displacement from his 'military portion' is clearest when Burney describes the scene at a Grand Review honoring Napoleon: Indeed I was amazed at the number of old friends by whom he was recognized, and touched--far more than I can express, to see him--in his old Coat & complete undress, accosted by his fine [former] Brethren, in all their new and beautiful array. . He was, indeed. . the most striking figure in the Apartment from contrasting. . with the general herd by being the plainest & worst dressed. (Hemlow, V, 307) D'Arblay certainly differs from the English male warned about in marriage manuals of the period and discussed by Stone. His distance from the military sets him further away from the violence associated with it, and closer to the peaceful benevolent man of feeling. D'Arblay's sentiments allowed him to pursue domestic happiness in life. However, this pursuit also managed to diminish his manhood, at least as it would be defined in a traditional patriarchal system. His desires became those of retirement and domestic felicity. D'Arblay initially shares these desires with Burney very early in their

PAGE 28

21 relationship. Prior to their marriage, d'Arblay writes to Burney, "Just now we were taking a walk in Norbury's Park--I said if I might almost have my own a small cottage in this great wood! Guess with whom I wished to share its little shelter. Farewell my amiable and beloved friend!!!" (Hemlow, II, 122). D'Arblay also had difficulty in procuring any sort of employment to support a family. The previous month he had written to Burney: I know to what I am fit; and I see that few places would be convenient for me. . I desire a place in which, it may be possible to exist without the entire sacrifice of my freedom, who's homage is designed to you only, in case I may be sure that you never shall feel any repentance of your accepting to share my fate. Then all my past woes will have been a cherished way to lead me to happiness. But in order to effect this too agreeable project it is indispensable that I may obtain some little place which may put us in situation of living in comfortable mediocrity near our friends. (Hemlow, II, 84-5) D'Arblay recognizes his difficult financial position, but only to the extent that it prohibits a comfortable life with Burney. Moreover, the prospect of a comfortable life makes all of his previous sufferings worthwhile. These sufferings continually arise for d'Arblay, Burney, and her heroines. It seems that a certain degree of suffering becomes the guarantee of good feelings and, thus, the basis for a companionate marriage. Moreover, d'Arblay's comfort in domestic life allows him to avoid the conflicting notions of masculinity and effeminacy that plagued most sentimental men. Throughout their courtship and marriage, Burney and d'Arblay created a vocabulary to express their relationship and feelings. Trying to avoid widespread knowledge of their courtship, Burney and d'Arblay went to great lengths to conceal their private conversations--concealment which often involved passing notes. Letter writing enhanced the intimacy of their correspondence (Barker-Benfield p.162). Burney writes

PAGE 29

22 of d'Arblay, "His own delicacy and caution save me a world of pain-I have only to take care of myself" (Hemlow, II, 105). She continues, "Misseur d'Arblay, in passing, gave me a note, I hope no one saw him. It contained the very feeling verses he has written" (Hemlow, II, 106). In each case, Burney's word choice rests in sentiment. She notes his delicacy and his feeling verses. Burney treats d'Arblay with equally strong sentiment. On his birthday in 1795, she sends d'Arblay this letter. "I have nothing appropriate for my beloved Friend upon this dear Day,-My only Manual & visual homage must be a Rose enrolled in two juvenile burlesque poems, which I present for his diversions:---he will not think This my only homage--while my Heart beats--all others can but be symbolic & secondary" (Hemlow, III, 104). Burney struggles to find the vocabulary to express the sentiment she feels and shows, but actually uses language that would be the basis for modern day clichs and terms of endearment. The depth of their companionship also shines through in the letters written whilst one of them is away from home. In 1796, d'Arblay was away while Burney was at home with young Alex. Burney writes, Dearest At! [Alex's name for d'Arblay]--come back to us on Friday,--J'ai beau vantee mon hermitage,--it won't do without my hermit!" (Hemlow, III, 156). Not only does Burney miss her husband, but she also equates their private life at Camilla cottage with that of a hermit. They both sought happiness through retirement with one another. Much later, in 1814, while Burney is in England and d'Arblay is away in Paris, she has not received a letter from him in five weeks. Burney's next letter reads in part: Oh mon ami! Objet unique de tout ce qui pour moi est bonheur sur la terre. . entreat some one. . to write, if you are ill!-which is my continual dread-and tell me at once HOW to come to you! . This hope [that the letters were mis-sent] alone keeps me from despair-and alone prevents

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23 every risk, both of fortune and of precarious heath and safety, to leave all and fly to you! (Hemlow, VII, P. 385) At 62 years of age, Burney still expresses the same concern and love for d'Arblay that one finds in newlyweds. They never cease using a vocabulary of love and concern for one another; their friendship and closeness stand far from the formalities of mandated marriages arranged by a patriarch. Along with his sentiments, d'Arblay's professional disappointments in life make him a prime choice for a companion. When he realized that his exile from France was going to be indefinite, he fixed on studying English six hours a day, so that he might procure some employment. Burney writes, "I fairly confess I see no prospect of success in this his only hope!--I think it, therefore, a cruel delusion" (Hemlow, II, 135). D'Arblay's losses deepened when he and Burney later returned to France. While forced to remain in France during the Napoleonic Wars, Burney writes to her father, "Misseur d'Arblay has found so nearly nothing remaining of his natural and hereditary claims in his own province, that he determined upon applying for some employment" in which he is "at work all day long at a laborious Bureau" (Hemlow, VI, 516, 524). D'Arblay constantly struggled to find substantial employment. Tellingly, once the Reign of Terror ended and Napoleon came to power, d'Arblay chose to remain with Burney at Camilla cottage while many of his former peers chose to return to France. Subsequently, they flourished in Napoleon's Grand Arme while d'Arblay remained in England. Ultimately, d'Arblay chose to pursue domestic happiness first. Burney even goes so far as to mention his losses and quest for companionship in the same sentence, "He has seen so much of life, and has suffered so severely from its disappointments, that retreat, with a chosen Companion, is become his final desire" (Hemlow, II, 179). Without much hope of

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24 employment and a failing effort to seek it, d'Arblay places himself in a position to focus on Burney and their family. As a failed 'professional,' he lessens his traditional position of social power. Regardless of the pecuniary difficulty that always plagued the d'Arblays, d'Arblay's diminished position ultimately was a positive force in his marriage. D'Arblay's weakened position works in conjunction with his sentimentality to make him the perfect husband. Burney also placed a great deal of sentimental value in her writing, especially during her courtship by d'Arblay. They established their relationship through the exchange of themes so that they might learn one another's native language. Burney and d'Arblay even exchanged pens as a symbol of their love. Burney wrote, "Come, little pen!...Will you remind me of your right owner, by disdaining to transmit to paper any sentiment that has not truth for its basis, and honor for its principle" (Hemlow, II, 119). They also bonded through plans to publish Camilla as a co-venture, whereby d'Arblay would translate the text to French. For Burney and d'Arblay, writing served as an intimate medium by which they would come to know one another. Burney and d'Arblay were able to connect, not only through letter writing, but also through Burney's creative writing. Many critics look at Burney's novels as working out particular issues from her life, including her existence as a female writer and her relationship with her father. However, little attention has been paid to how her attraction and marriage to d'Arblay, as an act of companionship based on sentiment, might illuminate the characters in her fiction. What many critics have noted as the weakness of Burney heroes, actually resembles the strengths of d'Arblay. In The Wanderer, Albert Harleigh and Sir Jasper

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25 Herrington fit the d'Arblay prototype. Harleigh is the hero, but Jasper offers a valuable look at a 'reformed' rake who missed his opportunity for companionship. Sir Jasper more closely resembles the reformed rake, than the naturally sentimental character. Regardless, Jasper and Harleigh operate from a position and personality based upon sentiment, rather than traditional acts of heroism. Moreover, though too late for Sir Jasper, Harleigh and d'Arblay both find themselves in 'professional' situations that facilitate their making companionate marriages. Burney presents a range of male professional and social positions in The Wanderer. Albert's younger brother, Dennis, is a successful lawyer. However, unlike Albert, Dennis figures minimally in events and never actually appears in the narrative. Initially, Dennis is offered as the fiance of Elinor, but this plan fails early in the narrative. Upon meeting Albert, Elinor soon forgets her involvement with Dennis and falls in love with Albert. Even Elinor, perhaps the most socially progressive voice in the novel, finds Dennis unattractive. The Dennis/Albert contrast shows how certain characteristics resulting from professional position inhibit/enhance the chance for a companionate match. As an aristocratic male heir, Albert spends the majority of his time attending social engagements. Harleigh has no need to pursue any sort of professional career. Dennis, on the other hand, as a younger son must pursue financial gain. The trials of a profession leave him unavailable to retrieve Elinor in the opening of the novel, much less allow him the time and opportunity to desire domestic happiness through retirement. Albert's free time, domestic priority, and lack of professional ambition enable him to focus his desires and energies on Juliet, rather than on procuring employment.

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26 With time to spend as he pleases, Harleigh can pursue Juliet. Of course, he does not do this in a typically 'heroic' manner. His sentiment and desire for a companion render him weak in the eyes of many readers. Harleigh is the new male character required for a companionate marriage and is unfairly judged against the standard of powerful patriarchs. Early in the novel, Harleigh shows the depth of his sentiment. After Lady Aurora has treated Ellis/Juliet kindly upon their first meeting, Burney writes, "The eyes of the stranger were not now the only ones that glistened. Harleigh could not see her thus benignly treated, or rather, as he conceived, thus restored to the treatment to which she had been accustomed, and which he believed her to merit, without feeling tears moisten his own" (Wanderer p. 105). Rather than using his sentiment to reinscribe his aristocratic power, Harleigh is simply moved by the treatment of Ellis/Juliet and thus hides his sentiment. His eyes do not threaten to moisten on his account, but rather on that of a feeling he experiences due the treatment of Ellis/Juliet. We also see Harleigh's delicacy when Elinor attempts suicide at the concert in which Ellis was to perform. After Elinor stabs herself, "Gently, therefore, and with tenderness, he [Harleigh] continued to support her; carefully forbearing either to irritate her enthusiasm, or to excite her spirit of controversy" (p. 361). Here, Harleigh's attention to Elinor's "feelings" helps to soothe her, at least momentarily. Barker-Benfield notes, "the man of feeling was shown to respect women and make common ground with them." (p. 249) Harleigh also shows this ability during his theological discussion with Elinor. He is consistently the male character who displays the greatest sensitivity to the sentiment of other characters.

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27 Harleigh's sentiment certainly causes a diminution of traditional power. He lacks the power to rescue Juliet from her troubles. As she contracts, through no fault of her own, more and more debt, Harleigh can only offer to transfer her debts to himself. He cannot force Juliet's debtors to pay her for services rendered as a music instructor. Harleigh's biggest "disappointment" lies in his inability to save Juliet from her "husband." Upon hearing of her marriage, Harleigh "appeared to be lost...[and] dragged himself back to his apartment" (p. 730). When the commissar comes to take Juliet away, Harleigh is "aloof and disconsolate, fixed like a statue, upon a small planed eminence" (p. 736). Moreover, as Juliet climbs into the carriage to be taken from the inn after the commissar captures her, Sir Jasper has not "strength, nor Harleigh courage, to offer aid" (p. 736). Harleigh is so devastated by the events that he is rendered weak and basically useless. This is not a result of inherent weakness, but rather the price of sentiment. His love for Juliet prevents his acting as a traditional hero, and he must suffer the consequences of such strong feelings. His disposition leads Juliet to exclaim, "Had I an hundred hearts,--ten thousand times you must have conquered them all" (p. 861). Like d'Arblay, through his sentimentality, and hence feminization with respect to the patriarchal tradition, Harleigh becomes an attractive choice for companionate marriage. While Harleigh cannot save Juliet from the Commissar, and certainly does not ride in on a white horse to rescue her, Juliet is 'rescued' nonetheless. Sir Jasper offers a revealing counterpart to Harleigh. He represents the decayed patriarch. As the heir of an entailed estate, Jasper feels the pressures of a failing patrilinear system of succession. He remarks to Juliet, "You see in me a whimsical, but contrite old bachelor; whose entailed estate has lost to him his youth, by ungenerous mistrust: but who would gladly devote the

PAGE 35

28 large possessions which have fallen to him collaterally, to making the rest of his existence companionable" (p. 634, my emphasis). Jasper also states, "When we are young, in the midst of the world, and in pursuit of beauty, riches, honours, power, fame, or knowledge, then, when judgment would either guide us to success, or demolish our senseless expectations, it keeps aloof from us like a stern stranger: and will only hail us an intimate, when we have no longer any occasion for its services!" (p. 633, my emphasis). In each of these passages, Sir Jasper laments his delay in choosing a companion. His vocabulary of "companionable" and "intimate" shows his desire for something more than the riches, honours, power, etc., that blinded him as a youth. His failing lies in his failure to have sought a companion in a wife. The Stonehenge scene near the end of the novel speaks directly to Sir Jasper's situation. Earlier critics have read this scene through Juliet. She sees, "The form, that might still be traced, of an antique structure...evidently circular and artificial...Many (slabs) were fallen: many, with grim menace looked nodding" while others "rested all the wars of the elements, in this high and bleak situation, for ages" (p. 765). The physical degeneration of Stonehenge parallels that of Sir Jasper, who has brought Juliet to this place and totters next to her. Doody's comments are quite helpful here. She views Stonehenge as a "release from history" (LW p. 364): "Burney contrives to make Stonehenge, which might at first seem suitable only to masculine phallic statement and symbolism, into a feminine place. That which is purely phallic is (like Sir Jasper) crippled and decayed--although valiantly decayed" (LW p. 366, my emphasis). Doody makes an important point. The "antique structure" of patriarchal society is falling apart, much like the form of Stonehenge. Those that remain, exist in a "bleak" situation. Sir

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29 Jasper's disappointed position in life displays this bleakness nicely for the reader. The remnant of a patriarchal society casts a bleak shadow for the men, as well as the women. Burney, however, attempts to show the positive results possible from this decay. She shows the necessary fall of 'powerful' men to 'weaker,' sentimental characters. While Sir Jasper has become like the decayed slabs of Stonehenge, Harleigh is ultimately saved from Sir Jasper's fate through his marriage to Juliet. In her own life, Burney desired a sentimental companion, and this desire manifests itself in the heroes of her fiction. In The Wanderer, Burney offers a realistic love story that revolves around the search for a sentimental husband. Granted, this story is foregrounded with revolution, dangerous economies, and deplorable characters, but the narrative works toward an understanding between Harleigh and Juliet. Burney offers Harleigh as a new kind of hero, but seems unsure of where he may fit. In the opening of the novel, the other characters attempt to understand Harleigh and Juliet as Don Quixote and Dulcinea. However, the analogy simply does not hold true. The days of Romance, even of anti-Romance, have passed, and Burney drops this comparison as she distances her heroes from the romance tradition. While her characters do fall in love in a sentimental sense, their quest for an emotional understanding reflects the many social, economic, and political pressures that work to inhibit and block such an understanding. Moreover, she clearly distances Harleigh from the traditional patriarchal male. Burney also distances him from the reformed man of feeling that characterized sentimental fiction. One can see Burney's difficulty in finding a literary precedent for her work. She may be able to identify with the romance tradition, but certainly departs from it. The reader is left with a new kind of hero.

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30 I suggest that the best way to understand Harleigh is to look toward Burney's real-life hero. Alexandre d'Arblay provided Burney with the feelings, sentiment, and desire for retirement that allowed them to achieve a remarkably happy marriage. Similarly, we see Albert Harleigh as a character who is often "unmanned" by his deepest feelings. His feelings make him an extraordinary hero, but also cause readers to see him as weak. However, this weakness is in fact one of the most basic reasons for Burney's attraction to d'Arblay. By examining d'Arblay and why he proved an attractive person to Burney, we may find a new way to understand Harleigh and the Burney male. We should avoid the standard set by strong patriarchs and their despotic rule, and look to a standard of companionship, the standard to which Burney subscribed. D'Arblay represents a new male role in marriage, much like Harleigh represents a new male role in fiction. Throughout her life with d'Arblay, and in her novels, Burney was drawn to sentimental males. They provided the vehicle by which Burney could realize her dreams of living in blissful retirement. Finding their strength in sentiment and feeling, Alexandre d'Arblay and Albert Harleigh represent a new kind of hero and a new standard by which to judge the Burney hero.

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LIST OF REFERENCES Addison, Joseph. The Spectator, No. 10. Barker-Benfield, G. J. The Culture of Sensibility: Sex and Society in Eighteenth-Century Britain. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1992. Clarke, Lorna J. ed. The Letters of Sarah Harriet Burney. Athens: U of Georgia P, 1997. Croker, John Wilson. Quarterly Review (April 1814). Crump, Justine. "'Turning the World Upside Down': Madness, Moral Management, and Frances Burney's The Wanderer." Eighteenth Century Fiction 10.3 (1998): 325-340. Doody, Margaret Anne. Frances Burney: The Life and Works. New Brunswick: Rutgers UP, 1988. Doody, Margaret Anne. ed. The Wanderer by Frances Burney. New York: Oxford UP, 1991. Epstein, Julia. The Iron Pen: Frances Burney and the Politics of Women's Writing. Madison: U of Wisconsin P, 1989. Fletcher, Anthony. Gender, Sex and Subordination in England 1500-1800. New Haven: Yale UP, 1995. Fulford, Tim. Romanticism and Masculinity: Gender, Politics and Poetics in the Writings of Burke, Coleridge, Cobbett, Wordsworth, DeQuincey, and Hazlitt. Boston: St. Martin's Press, 1999. Harman, Claire. Fanny Burney: A Biography. New York: Knopf, 2001. Hazlitt, William. The Edinburgh Review, or Critical Journal 24 (Nov. 1814-Feb. 1815). Hemlow, Joyce. ed. The Journals and Letters of Fanny Burney. New York: Oxford, Clarendon P, 1972. Johnson, Claudia. Equivocal Beings: Politics, Gender and Sentimentality in the 1790s: Wollstonecraft, Radcliffe, Burney, Austen. Chicago: U of Chicago P, 1995. 31

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32 Silih, Sara. "'Her Blacks, Her Whites and Her Double Face!': Altering Alterity in The Wanderer." Eighteenth Century Fiction 11.3 (1999): 301-316. Spacks, Patricia Meyer. Imagining a Self : Autobiography and Novel in EighteenthCentury England Cambridge: Harvard Un iversity Press, 1976. Spacks, Patricia Meyer. "Privacy, Dissimula tion, and Propriety: Frances Burney and Jane Austen." Eighteenth Century Fiction 12.4 (2000): 515-532. Stone, Lawrence. The Family, Sex, and Marriage in England 1500-1800 (Abridged Edition). New York: Harper Colophon Books, 1979. Straub, Kristina. Divided Fictions: Fanny Burney and the Feminine Strategy Lexington: UP of Kentucky, 1987. Thompson, Helen. "How The Wanderer Works: Reqading Burney and Bourdieu. ELH 68.4 (2001): 965-989. Troide, Lars E. ed. The Early Jounals and Letters of Fanny Burney New York: Oxford, Clarendon P, 1988.

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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH J. Kevin Jordan was raised in Altamonte Springs, Florida, but is sure to always mention that he was born in Lexington, Kentucky. He was then relocated to Gainesville to eventually receive a B.A. in English from the University of Florida. When Kevin completes his Master of Arts in English, he will first try to find a nice frame with some sort of etching, then scurry back to Altamonte Springs to be with his son and teach writing to unsuspecting high school graduates and random friends and family members. 33


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Title: Revisiting Stonehenge: Marriage, Masculinity, and Burney's Sentimental Hero in the Wanderer
Physical Description: Mixed Material
Copyright Date: 2008

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Source Institution: University of Florida
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REVISITING STONEHENGE: MARRIAGE, MASCULINITY, AND BURNEY'S
SENTIMENTAL HERO IN THE WANDERER













By

J. KEVIN JORDAN


A THESIS PRESENTED TO THE GRADUATE SCHOOL
OF THE UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA IN PARTIAL FULFILLMENT
OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF
MASTER OF ARTS

UNIVERSITY OF FLORIDA


2003

































Copyright 2003

by

J. Kevin Jordan

































For the two EAs who taught me the meaning of masculinity















ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

First of all, I would like to thank Dr. Brian McCrea, who has guided me through

two degrees and much more. I would also like to thank Dr. Patricia Craddock for helping

me to tie up the loose ends. Secondly, I want to thank Erin Sumner and Elliot Sumner-

Jordan for having the patience and care to endure my affair with Frances Burney for so

many years. I also want to thank my parents for trusting me when said I wanted to read

novels in college, my brother for always saying so much with so few words, and the rest

of my family for smiling when I talked about my projects. Finally, a giant "thank you"

goes to all of my Gainesville friends (past and present), especially Michael "whatnot"

Dietz, Julie "iron chef' Sinn, Michael "neighbor" Loughran, Chris "indigo" Jones, Val

"emerald isle" Lietner, and Jon "sergeant" Stern, who cut me loose or kept me anchored

at all the right times over the years.
















TABLE OF CONTENTS
page

A C K N O W L E D G M E N T S .................................................................................................. iv

A B S T R A C T ..........................................................................................................v i

CHAPTER

1 TH E W AND ERER FIN D S A H OM E ........................................................................... 1

2 MARRIAGE AND THE SENTIMENTAL MAN .......................................................6

3 THE IM PA CT OF CO AR SEN ESS......................................................... .............. 13

4 TH E B E ST O F M EN....................... ........................................... ........................... 17

L IST O F R E FE R E N C E S .............................................................................. .............3 1

BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH ............................................................. ...............33
















Abstract of Thesis Presented to the Graduate School
of the University of Florida in Partial Fulfillment of the
Requirements for the Degree of Master of Arts

REVISITING STONEHENGE: MARRIAGE, MASCULINITY, AND BURNEY'S
SENTIMENTAL HERO IN THE WANDERER



By

J. Kevin Jordan

May 2003

Chair: Dr. Brian McCrea
Major Department: English

Since the middle of the 1980s, much of the psychoanalyses of Frances Burney

have focused on her relationship with her father and the burning of her juvenilia. Critics

have used these two major areas of Burney's life to understand her fiction. No matter the

approach, most scholars have expressed some sort of dismay with the unsatisfactory

males (heroes?) that appear throughout Burney's novels. Margaret Anne Doody

describes the male characters of The Wanderer as "all weak men." However, these

characters are judged against standards that rest in the established rules of a patriarchal

society. We might reevaluate the 'strength' of Burney's males by examining a lesser-

explored aspect of her life.

Little attention has been given to perhaps Burney's most important relationship,

that of her marriage to Alexandre d'Arblay. In d'Arblay we may see another standard by

which we may be able to assess the 'strength' of Burney's heroes. Burney and d'Arblay









had a relationship that revolved around sharing of feelings and sentiment. Their marriage

resembles a union based on companionship, rather than social, economic, or political

strategy. Their union also represents a larger shift in marriage practice. It is a union

termed a companionate marriage. By looking at Burney's 'real-life hero,' we may find

another perspective by which to view Bumey's fictional heroes, and thus vindicate their

characters.

Most notably, Albert Harleigh, the hero of The Wanderer, shares many of the

characteristics that attracted Burney to d'Arblay. The 'weakness' of Burney's heroes

actually involves sentimentality. Harleigh is too feeling. His failings as a satisfactory

'hero' come at moments where his sentiments disable him. However, Burney's journals

reveal an attraction to the sentiment she finds in d'Arblay, a sentiment that causes

Harleigh to be declared weak. Bumey describes d'Arblay with a vocabulary that revolves

around his sentiments and feelings. The strength Bumey sees in d'Arblay mirrors the

'weakness' of her fictional heroes.

According to the literary tradition of heroes, Harleigh certainly isn't one.

However, by looking closely at the 'failings' of Burney's heroes and the reasons d'Arblay

proved such a good husband, we may reevaluate the appeal and strength of the Bumey

hero.














CHAPTER 1
THE WANDERER FINDS A HOME

Frances Burney lived during a period that provided a wealth of subjects on which

she could turn her talented and keen eye. Critics and historians identify the mid- to late-

eighteenth century as a transitional period for many social, political, and economic

institutions. Burney's novels reflect and comment upon all of these changes. She

witnessed the aftermath of massive political revolution first hand while living in France

from 1802-1812. She wrote The Wanderer during her time in France and sets it "During

the dire reign of the terrific Robespierre." She heard the rising voices of the feminist

movement in Mary Wollstonecraft and Mary Hays. These voices sound in Burney's

fiction through characters such as Elinor Jodrell in The Wanderer. She saw the social

effects of the decline of patriarchy; all of her novels include decaying patriarchal figures.

From Mr. Villars in Evelina to the Bishop in The Wanderer, figures of male authority are

absent, while in Camilla Mr. Tyrold is dominated by his wife. The eponymous Cecilia is

left with three surrogate fathers, each unsatisfying in a different way.

Despite the richness of her insight and commentary, Burney remained a relatively

minor figure in eighteenth century studies until the mid-1980s. Then Burney criticism

exploded. Kristina Straub, Margaret Ann Doody, and Julia Epstein published

monographs devoted to Burney in 1987, 1988, and 1989, respectively. With a complete

edition of Burney's journals and letters available, much of the criticism included

significant references to her biography. Critics tended to focus upon the difficulty of

Burney's existence as a female author and the feminism(s) found in Burney's journals and









fiction. In the early 90s, Burney's work (and critical discussion of it) expanded yet again.

Eighteenth Century Fiction published a volume devoted to Burney's work (3.4, 1991):

Much of the criticism dealt with Evelina and again focused largely on psychobiography,

with most of the attention directed at the relationship between Burney and her father, Dr.

Charles Bumey. Fortunately, critics continue to expand both the Burney canon and the

basis of her interest. Once Burney's least well-known and least discussed novel, The

Wanderer has been receiving more critical attention in the last few years. Upon its

publication in 1814, Burney's last novel met with severe criticism from reviewers such as

William Hazlitt and John Wilson Croker. However, recent critics have been finding

much that is positive to say about Burney's final work. In the last five years, more

articles that focus on The Wanderer, as opposed to all of Burney's other works, have

appeared in Eighteenth Century Fiction. Justine Crump, Sara Silih, and Patricia Meyer

Spacks have studied respectively the moral debates between Harleigh and Elinor, the role

of race and its implications for Ellis, and propriety as it creates both oppression and

protection for women. Also, Helen Thompson recently published an essay in ELH that

reaffirms the importance of the structure and length of The Wanderer. Burney's last

novel is finally receiving the attention that it has deserved.

As the flow of Burney criticism moves to include The Wanderer, critics have

displayed little of the biographical concern that has dominated the majority of articles and

books about Burney and her work. I would like to at once join in the flourishing critical

debate about The Wanderer and revisit some of the earlier critiques of Burney's heroes.

Doody, Straub, and Epstein share a general notion that Burney's novels reveal her desire

to fight the social hierarchies established by patriarchal power. Moreover, Doody assigns









Burney a permanent trajectory toward Jacobin loyalties. These critics also find Burney's

heroes to be weak and unsatisfying. Doody describes Albert Harleigh, the hero of The

Wanderer, as "the last and least attractive of a series of Burney heroes." In essence, "He

does not satisfy our ideas of the 'hero' of a love story---who ought to be handsome,

dashing, strong, and courageous, if a trifle self-willed" (Wxxiii). Bumey's heroes are

flawed in that they fail to live up to the expectations established by the heroes of the

romance tradition. If Burney is to subvert patriarchal order, how are her heroes to

survive a comparison to its standards?

Claudia Johnson offers another explanation for the weakness of the Bumey hero.

What critics have called weakness may be reconsidered as sentimentality. Rather than

being dashing and self-willed, the Burney hero acts with punctilio and consideration.

Rather than commanding respect based on aristocratic status, he shies away from

confrontation and, in the case of Harleigh, can even be disabled by it. Johnson too is

disappointed by the Bumey hero. She recognizes the sentiment that possesses him, but

finds that sentiment to be yet another location for male authority. Johnson argues that the

feminization of men, when accompanied by the stagnation of gender roles for females,

offers little alternative for a character such as The Wanderer's Juliet. In the very different

views of Johnson and Doody, the Bumey hero proves to be equally unsatisfactory.

Might there be a way to reevaluate the Bumey hero such that this type of

character, when Burney consistently returned to in her fiction, achieves credibility and

can stand as a respectable, satisfactory partner for her heroines? Because they measure

her heroes against the heroes of the romance and the ideals of sentimentality, most critics

also find the marriages that conclude her novels quite unsatisfactory. Why did Bumey









consistently end her novels this way, and why do the grooms all have sentimentality in

common? Recent works by G. J. Barker-Benfield and Tim Fulford explore changing

notions of masculinity during the eighteenth century. The standard for masculinity

moved from dashing, physically adept heroes in the romance tradition, to caring,

thinking, and feeling men who were considerate and understanding. This, along with

Lawrence Stone's study of shifting marriage practices in eighteenth century England,

provides a new way to consider Burney's heroes. Also, while much has been said

concerning Burney's relationship with her father, very little notice has been given to,

perhaps, Burney's most important relationship: her marriage to Alexandre d'Arblay.

Burney and d'Arblay achieved a connection that resulted in a very satisfying (for them)

"companionate marriage" (Stone's term). I would like to explore more closely the place of

Burney's marriage and the importance it held in her life and fiction. By viewing her

heroes through the characteristics of one Burney's most important relationships,

especially in light of shifting marriage practices and changing definitions of masculinity,

we might better understand those heroes' perceived weakness and reevaluate their

strengths.

To suggest a new way to view Burney's heroes, I would like to discuss two main

issues. First, the shifting attitudes toward marriage and masculinity. Stone provides

substantial evidence and commentary regarding "the rise of the companionate marriage."

The failing patriarchal system resulted in a jointed change in the nature of marriages and

the personal characteristics necessary to maintain them. Barker-Benfield's work extends

beyond Stone and more specifically examines the shift in male behavior and masculinity.

The sociohistoric moment described by Stone and Barker-Benfield sets a background









capable of illuminating the reasons for Burney's heroes' perceived weakness. Second, I

will show that Burney had reason to understand the dangers of traditional masculinity, a

desire a companion representative of this new version of masculinity. Burney's brother,

James Burney, and brother-in-law, Molesworth Phillips, provided her with examples of

the difficulty in filial and marital relationships with old order males. James and Phillips

both went to sea as young men and formed the violent and gruff tendencies that were

necessary for their posts, but damaging to domestic felicity. Perhaps most devastating to

Burney, was Phillip's horrid treatment of his wife, her sister, Susan. Susan's marriage

resulted in estrangement from her family, extreme financial difficulties, and constant fear

of her violently tempered husband. In contrast, d'Arblay also entered a traditional career

as a military man but ultimately came to represent a version of masculinity that was quite

distant from that of Phillips and James Burney. Thus, the marriage of Burney and

d'Arblay looks quite different than her sister's. Through these biographical and

sociohistorical situations, I will suggest a new approach to Burney's heroes, specifically

Albert Harleigh.














CHAPTER 2
MARRIAGE AND THE SENTIMENTAL MAN

The institution of marriage offers a difficult subject for discussion in that it is at

once both an extremely private, yet utterly public matter. Not only were marriage

practices shifting in the late seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries, but they were

also highly debated and discussed publicly through fiction, marriage manuals, and

periodicals. Stone looks to public records and marriage manuals, while Barker-Benfield

focuses largely on fiction. Regardless, in each case, the institution of marriage reflects a

fundamental shift in the nature of ideal male/female relations. As the nature of such

relationships changed, so did the attitudes and behaviors expected from the individuals

taking part. Most importantly, these changes resulted in a new version of masculinity,

one that valued a "sensible" and "sentimental" man.

During the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries the widespread (among the

propertied and moneyed classes) marriage based on political or economic union began to

decline in its popularity. Parents lost control over the unions of their children. Social,

political, and economic alliances worked out by parents took a second seat the affections

of children for their mates. Parents' mandate changed to parents' permission. These

developments are summarized in Stone's phrase the "rise of the companionate marriage."

However, the rise was a slow one. "In 1727, Daniel Defoe complained that still in his

own time 'the money and the maidenhead is the subject of our meditations,' the result

being 'how much marriage, how little friendship'" (Stone p. 217). Defoe highlights the

important distinction between friendship and marriage that plagued many relationships.









With little 'friendship' involved, successful (in a sentimental and personal, hence

companionate sense) marriages were scarce, or at least dependent on parents' judgments,

rather than those of the man and woman involved. Defoe also implies an expectation of

friendship in a marriage. Stone cites the social effect of such, "Paradoxically enough, the

rise of separation in the eighteenth century, like the rise of divorces in the twentieth, is an

indication of rising emotional expectations from marriage. In periods when expectations

are low, frustrations will also be low" (p. 223). Couples were no longer expected to find

all of their personal fulfillment outside of the domestic sphere. By 1780, Stone explains

"that... for the first time in history romantic love became a respectable motive for

marriage among the propertied classes" (p. 190).

Hopes of a companionate marriage required a change in the behaviors and

personalities of both men and women. I would like to focus on the necessary change in

the manners of men, one which was necessary for men to prove successful companions.

Ultimately, a new understanding of masculinity would replace the selfishness and

coarseness that pervaded male behavior within the old patriarchal order. A female author

of an 1846 marriage manual warned of "the intense coarseness of the male character"

(Stone p. 250). Stone attributes the passage's emphasis not to "the male sexual drive, but

rather to masculine selfishness, desire for autocratic domestic authority, and contempt for

common little politeness in the treatment of a wife" (p. 250). Women were right to fear

marriage. Men were still being educated in a manner that produced despotic characters

groomed to be the head of a patriarchal system.

Many of the behavioral 'problems' exhibited by British males began as early as

grammar school and continued into the universities. The inequality of the educational









system taught boys early on that 'autocratic' authority was theirs for the taking. Anthony

Fletcher notes, "Their schooling and further education at university, the Inns of Court and

through the Grand Tour, was the foundation of the gentry's patriarchal command of

English society" (p. 298). For most, "The grammar school was formative for a large

number of boys, lifting them from the home into a future world of leisured authority" (p.

300). With schools serving the purpose of maintaining established social and gender

hierarchies, boys were shaped into characters who found acceptance and defined

themselves through public display, rather than through domestic grace. Fletcher also

notes the common practice (supported by many educators) in schools that allowed and

even encouraged boys to learn courage and bravery through fighting and harsh physical

punishment (pp. 307-8). The lives of school-boys rested "in a kind of'primitive

subculture,' engaged in immorality, indiscipline, riot, and rebellion" (Barker-Benfield p.

46). Education linked violent and unruly behavior with the strict honor codes of the

gentry. The rite of passage for young men supported injurious liberty and lack of self-

control. Moreso, the culture of school-boys established the public sphere as the locale for

the definition of character. Their masculinity was codified in violence and traditional

notions of manliness.

Unfortunately, the violence that inhabited the school yards extended into the

streets, and onto helpless victims. The university was a place where students joined "the

ranks of rakes and rioters." Barker-Benfield writes, "There innocent young lads were

corrupted, introduced to drinking, gambling, and prodigal spending as well as sex. The

university was where young men, sexually maturing beings away from home and subject

to peer pressure, could become 'men of the world'" (p. 46). England's schools were









producing violently self-concerned men. The blurring of the rake/student distinction

became increasingly dangerous when students formed groups intent on public assault.

These groups frequently fought with the watch, terrorized women, beat gentlemen and

beggars alike, and took advantage of the handicapped (Barker-Benfield p. 47). Naturally,

any woman (or other person for that matter) would be wise to fear "the coarseness of the

male character."

Clearly a new male figure was in order. Westenhall Wilkes, in an edition

published in 1740 that ran to eight editions through 1766, advises "his readers to seek in a

husband such qualities as 'a virtuous disposition, a good understanding, an even temper,

an easy fortune, and an agreeable person'" (Stone p. 219). "The campaign for the

reformation of manners" began late in the seventeenth century (Barker-Benfield p. 55).

Great efforts were employed to curtail the rampant violent behavior of men in the streets

of London. As the reading public and the population of London skyrocketed (relatively

speaking) around the same time, a large part of the 'campaign' centered upon the

publication of pamphlets and papers. The Tatler and The Spectator intended "to 'recover'

the 'age' out of its desperate state of vice and folly" (Barker-Benfield p. 61). "Addison,

Steele, and their fellow reformers saw themselves facing the dissolution of any standard

of morality and taste" (Barker-Benfield p. 61). Particularly, they wanted to make room

for a new social position that mitigated the dichotomy between the rake and the Puritan.

Addison, especially, attempted to "enliven morality with wit, and to temper wit with

morality" (The Spectator No. 10). In an effort to tame rakish behavior, he attempts to

place philosophy in "clubs and assemblies, at tea tables and coffeehouses." Such









reformers wanted to replace rowdy public behavior with thoughtful conversations. If

men were busy matching wits, then they were not terrorizing innocent people.

The Spectator also tried to shift notions of pleasure from outward behavior to

internal reflection. It "claimed that it controlled special keys to unlock still higher

degrees of pleasure, including the mastery of ancient languages as well as those of

Christian morality and self-discipline" (Barker-Benfield p. 62). Reformers made

widespread attempts at affecting change across many levels of society. Addison and

Steele also proposed of education for women and the newly rich. Addison implies that

the new merchant class suffered from idleness (of intellectual pursuit) and lack of

education. He imagines himself educating "the blanks of society... [those] altogether

unfurnished with ideas." He "will daily instill into them such sound and wholesome

sentiments as shall have a good effect on their conversation for the ensuing twelve hours"

(my emphasis). Addison focused on the reformation (or creation) of proper sentiment in

order to change the intellectual and social landscape of London city life. For the most

part, reformers look toward education to rectify the ill-effects of school-house culture.

Writers of fiction took another direction as they expressed the need for a change

in the manners of men. Barker-Benfield notes a fairly standard method of conversion in

"sentimental fiction." With more than strict didacticism in mind, most authors contrived a

system to convert men's manners along with their religious beliefs. Licentious men

became at once respectable and religious (Barker-Benfield p. 250). Barker-Benfield sees

Mr. B in Pamela as an example of such a conversion, while Clarissa offers Lovelace as a

failed attempt at conversion (pp. 250-4). For Barker-Benfield, the conversion of these

male characters occurs in such a manner that the newly shaped male became a reflection









of women's wishes for their treatment by men. "The creation of men of feeling was the

expression of'collective wish fulfillment,' and of deep need on the part of women"

(Barker-Benfield p. 247). The conversion, however much it led to better treatment of

women of "quality," did nothing to alleviate any real inequality that existed, either

socially or legally. Men still maintained legal authority as husband and father (an issue

that would plague the marriage of Burney's sister, Susan).

Conversion may not have been the ideal route to a sound marriage, but the new

ideal man was endowed with a series of characteristics that would encourage the proper

treatment of those around him. Heroes of sentimental fiction "identified with Christian

piety and goodness" and "opposed gambling, oaths, drinking, idleness, cruelty to animals,

and other elements of popular male culture" (Barker-Benfield p. 247-8). Gone were the

ways of dueling and brutality displayed in earlier fictions. The new hero also showed a

concern for the preferences and objections of the women around him. The sentimental

hero commanded a refined display of manners with 'delicacy' and thus became a better

candidate for a companionate marriage.

By the eighteenth century, women and men alike began to affect change in the

practice of marriage and the personal behavior necessary to make it successful. The

works of Stone and Barker-Benfield (among others) illuminate the emergence of, and

demand for, an new time of masculinity. Failing patriarchal systems placed much more

power in the hands of surviving male heirs, who in turn exercised a greater right to

choose their companions. As women were able to follow suit in expressing their

preference in a companion, their dislike of rakish brutes settled in the minds of men.

With marriage practices changing and expectations of men encouraging more delicate






12


traits, a new kind of hero needed to emerge and break free from the old romance

tradition.














CHAPTER 3
THE IMPACT OF COARSENESS

While Burney would have been familiar with the possibilities for a male's

conversion in fiction, her experiences in reality harshly taught her otherwise. Burney and

her family were enraged and embarrassed by the treatment of her beloved sister, Susan,

and the behavior of her brother James. In each of these situations, 'the coarseness of the

male character' directly contributed to the pain of Burney and her family. In Susan's case,

the marriage to Molesworth Phillips resulted in a life of fear and danger; one which

caused her to be separated from Burney for the last five years of her life. James created a

stir in the Burney family when he left his wife and children to live with his half-sister,

Sarah Harriet Burney. Both of these men played an important role in Burney's life, and

left impressions that showed the true cruelty that the wrong type of husband could bring.

After James' naval career ended in 1785, he soon married Sally Payne. However,

by 1798 he had grown tired of his wife and children and spent most of his time visiting

his half-sister, Sarah (who was still living at home with Dr. Burney). After Dr. Burney

had refused him refuge from his unhappy home life, James and Sarah ran away together.

The nature of the relationship between James and Sarah is still very unclear. Early

readers have assumed that the relationship was sexual in nature. However, Lorna J. Clark

makes a very strong case that the relationship was much less scandalous in nature (p.

xxxv-xxxvii). Regardless, James left his wife to care for their children (the youngest of

whom was less than two) during his five-year absence. While James did eventually









return to his family, Burney would have seen the precarious situation of a mother and

wife abandoned by her husband.

The exploits of Phillips proved to be much more traumatic for Susan, and by

extension, Burney. His treatment of Susan eventually lead to her estrangement from her

beloved sister for the five years that preceded her death. However, his cruelty began

much earlier. Less than 14 years after their marriage in 1782, "Phillips, now unfaithful,

tyrannical, and cruel, took complete possession of their son, sending him away to school

and preventing Susanna from seeing him" (Doody, LWp. 282). Her sorrow only

increased in 1796, when Phillips forced her to return to Ireland, away from all of her

family and friends. Phillips had the law in his favor. He could compel his wife to

accompany him wherever he might choose to go. Divorce was unheard of for ladies, and

legal separation was an even more precarious option. If Susan obtained a legal

separation, she almost certainly would have lost her children. She had no choice but to

go with him. In Ireland, Phillips continued his adulterous pursuits publicly and

shamelessly. Susan's "life in Ireland became increasingly lonely and more miserable, as

she was subjected to Phillips' harsh temper and perhaps even to physical violence"

(Doody, LWp. 284). Her health steadily declined until in 1799, Phillips had no choice

but to grant her travel back to England. The couple made it to Chester in late December.

However, with Burney and d'Arblay en route, Susan died on January 6 of the new year.

Susan was Burney's first and most important correspondent throughout her life. The

bulk of Burney's letters are addressed to Susan. She also acted as the go-between for

Burney and d'Arblay during their courtship. Susan was an ever present figure in Burney's

life, no matter their distance. Her death was devastating to Burney. "This was the









greatest bereavement Burney had known hitherto. She never got over it. She kept the

sixth of January as a sorrowful anniversary for ever after, even when her father rebuked

her for the practice" (Doody, LWp. 286). Certainly the treatment of Susan served as a

warning for Burney. His brutishness and cruelty exemplified the dangers in a marriage to

a man who lacked sensibility.

James was the only member of the Burney family who did not hold Phillips

personally responsible for Susan's untimely death. Ironically enough, James was the only

member of the family who had seen Phillips' violent side prior to his ill treatment of

Susan. Both men sailed through the east Pacific as part of Captain Cook's crew. They

were comrades in dangerous sea travels and violent confrontations with the people they

encountered. Harmon recounts the circumstance by which Phillips gained fame for his

bravery in battle. As Lieutenant of Marines, Phillips accompanied Cook to shore to settle

a dispute with the natives. A skirmish broke out in which Cook was fatally wounded. As

the other Marines fled the shore, Phillips stayed behind and is thought to have shot

Cook's assailant. He returned to England a hero.

James soon introduced his good friend to the rest of his family. Phillips

immediately took a liking to Susan, and married her two months after their introduction.

In that time, the Burney family could find nothing suspect about Phillips. Harmon notes

that, while Dr. Burney was a bit skeptical about the large income Phillips was due to

inherit, all other opinions of him were favorable, if not exceptional. It would seem that

he had been 'converted' from his sea going behaviors. However, the conventions of

fiction did not operate for Phillips. His character was formed at sea, and remained

unchanged.









James and Phillips indirectly exposed Bumey to the dangers of traditional

masculinity (a naval career was a common option for sons not inheriting a title). The

early portion of their lives shaped the men they would become, and the fate their

domestic lives would realize:

They had seen firsthand, and been threatened with, violent death; they had
endured extremes of weather and the privations of long sea voyages
(where fricassee f rat was a delicacy only the officers were allowed); they
had been among the first Europeans to set eyes on the other-worldly
icescapes of both the Arctic and the Antarctic, had met and consorted with
exotic and utterly foreign people, and had doubtless seen, perhaps joined
in, countless scenes of coarseness and brutality as well as of heroism and
comradeship. From the 1780s onward, James Burney showed signs of
disturbance, restlessness with his home life and an inability to further his
career; Phillips metamorphosed into a gambler, drinker, and philanderer.
(Harman p. 157)

No matter the optimism about male conversion that was common in the fiction


Burney read, these real examples would have impacted Burney.














CHAPTER 4
THE BEST OF MEN

Alexandre d'Arblay, much like James Bumey and Molesworth Phillips, sought a

career in the military. However, the similarities stop there. D'Arblay's career path did

not leave him hopelessly cruel and selfish. Rather, the French Revolution forced him out

of his military mold and provided the converting force that Barker-Benfield locates in

religion. As d'Arblay's life progressed, he became further removed from his initial

career, pursuing companionate marriage with Bumey--one that she happily entered late in

her life.

Prior to the publication of Evelina, Burney wrote that she would need "particular

inducements" to give her hand in marriage (Straub p. 53). Straub writes, "Marriage was,

in Bumey's view, a risk with potentially catastrophic results that was probably better

avoided than taken" (p. 53). D'Arblay made Burney want to take the risk. At once

frightening, and later rewarding, Bumey's opinion of marriage seems to be difficult to

place. Ultimately, her decision for herself and her heroines revolved around the type of

suitor.

While most earlier critics find the Bumey male to be weak and unsatisfying,

Barker-Benfield offers a different view. He places Evelina's Lord Orville within the

tradition of sentimental heroes, but also apart from its conventions. "Unlike Belmont,

Belford [of Clarissa], and Mr. B [of Pamela], Orville has not had to be converted. He

has been unambiguously a man of feeling all along, identifying himself thoroughly with

the reformation of male manners" (p. 255). Bumey's heroes begin as sentimental









characters, expressing the "better (sic) it would be if men never became rakes at all"

(Barker-Benfield p. 255). The Burney hero doesn't satisfy the romantic ideal espoused by

Doody, or quite fit the mold of the sentimental hero described by Barker-Benfield.

However, an examination of d'Arblay (and Burney's marriage) offers another version of

Barker-Benfield's man of feeling, by which we can evaluate the Burney hero. Rather

than a reformed rake, d'Arblay exhibits the qualities of the man of feeling, but reaches

them through another means. His 'reform' comes by way of natural sentiment and taste,

lack of professional responsibility, and a desire for domestic felicity. This is the ideal for

a Burney husband.

Burney remained a single woman until she was 41 years of age. By 1792, she had

resigned herself to a single life. However, Burney met d'Arblay in January of 1793 and

married him six months later. The years immediately following her marriage seem to

have been the happiest of her life. Burney's joy in marriage to d'Arblay rested in a

seemingly deep attraction to and affection for his manners, interests, and sentiments.

These traits mirror those of the man of feeling, required for a companionate marriage.

D'Arblay represents a new male who emerged from a growing resentment for traditional

aristocratic (and hence patriarchal) roles in marriage.

Frances Burney clearly reveals the dilemma of a woman in desire of a companion.

In 1775, Burney received a proposal from a suitor named Thomas Barlow. In her journal,

she recounts her fears that her father might "persuade" or "advise" her to marry him:

I felt, too, that I had no argumentative objections. .. his Character,
disposition, situation-I knew nothing against-but O!-I felt he was no
companion for my heart!-I wept like an infant-Eat nothing-seemed as if
already married-& passed the whole day in more misery than, merely on
my own account, I ever did before in my life,-except upon the loss of my









own beloved mother-& ever revered and most dear Grandmother. (Troide,
II, 146-7)

Burney's fear of marriage to Barlow runs so deep that only the deaths of her mother and

grandmother provide an analogy for her feelings. Patricia Meyer Spacks attributes

Burney's reaction to fear for the loss of her freedom (p 164). But Bumey suffers so

intently because she does not see Barlow as a companion for her heart. Fortunately for

Burney, d'Arblay later will serve as that companion.

But what of this companion? Burney's interest in d'Arblay rested upon a

companionship based on his sentiments and personal interests. A French emigre who had

served in the army of King Louie XVI, d'Arblay arrived in England having fled France,

leaving behind his estate and many friends. Bumey met him at Norbury Park where he

stayed with her close friends, the Lockes, and married him only six months later. Their

brief courtship and subsequent marriage relied very much on the notion of

companionship. Moreover, d'Arblay's sentimentality seems to be one of his attractions for

Burney. Her union with d'Arblay resulted in many outside difficulties and pressures, but

his companionship was her chosen route to happiness.

Burney's correspondence with d'Arblay, family, and friends reveals much about

why he proved such an attractive husband. Through the first two months after their

introduction, Bumey takes special note of the understandable dejection displayed by

d'Arblay due to the course of the revolution in France. She describes his "tender Heart"

and "generous delicacy." Burney writes that "these immediate French sufferers here

interest us, and these alone have been able to interest me at all" (Hemlow, II, 9). Amidst

the emotional turmoil, she is able to form a special friendship with d'Arblay. For Burney,

he soon becomes one of "the best of men."









Readers of Burney's journals may have a difficult time fixing the character of

d'Arblay. A successful French military officer, d'Arblay frequently seems an unlikely

soldier. Burney describes him to her father, "With this, his Military portion, he is

passionately fond of literature, a most delicate critic in his own language, well versed in

both Italian & German, and a very elegant Poet" (Hemlow, II, 19). Typically, d'Arblay's

learning would coincide with military success. However, Burney never mentions his

military life as an attraction. Moreover, only his dejection as a fleeing political refugee

seems attractive. Burney's descriptions of d'Arblay revolve around a language of

sentiment and feeling. D'Arblay appears as a figure removed from his military past, who

acts first as a companion and friend to Burney. Once married, d'Arblay continues to

distance himself from his previous career. D'Arblay's displacement from his 'military

portion' is clearest when Burney describes the scene at a Grand Review honoring

Napoleon:

Indeed I was amazed at the number of old friends by whom he was
recognized, and touched--far more than I can express, to see him--in his
old Coat & complete undress, accosted by his fine [former] Brethren, in all
their new and beautiful array. ... He was, indeed. .. the most striking
figure in the Apartment from contrasting. .. with the general herd by being
the plainest & worst dressed. (Hemlow, V, 307)

D'Arblay certainly differs from the English male warned about in marriage manuals of

the period and discussed by Stone. His distance from the military sets him further away

from the violence associated with it, and closer to the peaceful benevolent man of feeling.

D'Arblay's sentiments allowed him to pursue domestic happiness in life.

However, this pursuit also managed to diminish his manhood, at least as it would be

defined in a traditional patriarchal system. His desires became those of retirement and

domestic felicity. D'Arblay initially shares these desires with Burney very early in their









relationship. Prior to their marriage, d'Arblay writes to Burney, "Just now we were

taking a walk in Norbury's Park--I said if I might almost have my own a small cottage in

this great wood! Guess with whom I wished to share its little shelter. Farewell my

amiable and beloved friend!!!" (Hemlow, II, 122). D'Arblay also had difficulty in

procuring any sort of employment to support a family. The previous month he had

written to Bumey:

I know to what I am fit; and I see that few places would be convenient for
me. ... I desire a place in which, it may be possible to exist without the
entire sacrifice of my freedom, who's homage is designed to you only, in
case I may be sure that you never shall feel any repentance of your
accepting to share my fate. Then all my past woes will have been a
cherished way to lead me to happiness. But in order to effect this too
agreeable project it is indispensable that I may obtain some little place
which may put us in situation of living in comfortable mediocrity near our
friends. (Hemlow, II, 84-5)

D'Arblay recognizes his difficult financial position, but only to the extent that it prohibits

a comfortable life with Bumey. Moreover, the prospect of a comfortable life makes all of

his previous sufferings worthwhile. These sufferings continually arise for d'Arblay,

Burney, and her heroines. It seems that a certain degree of suffering becomes the

guarantee of good feelings and, thus, the basis for a companionate marriage. Moreover,

d'Arblay's comfort in domestic life allows him to avoid the conflicting notions of

masculinity and effeminacy that plagued most sentimental men.

Throughout their courtship and marriage, Bumey and d'Arblay created a

vocabulary to express their relationship and feelings. Trying to avoid widespread

knowledge of their courtship, Bumey and d'Arblay went to great lengths to conceal their

private conversations--concealment which often involved passing notes. Letter writing

enhanced the intimacy of their correspondence (Barker-Benfield p. 162). Burney writes









of d'Arblay, "His own delicacy and caution save me a world of pain-I have only to take

care of myself' (Hemlow, II, 105). She continues, "Misseur d'Arblay, in passing, gave

me a note, I hope no one saw him. It contained the very feeling verses he has written"

(Hemlow, II, 106). In each case, Burney's word choice rests in sentiment. She notes his

delicacy and his feeling verses. Burney treats d'Arblay with equally strong sentiment.

On his birthday in 1795, she sends d'Arblay this letter. "I have nothing appropriate for

my beloved Friend upon this dear Day,-- My only Manual & visual homage must be a

Rose enrolled in two juvenile burlesque poems, which I present for his diversions:-- --he

will not think This my only homage--while my Heart beats--all others can but be

symbolic & secondary" (Hemlow, III, 104). Burney struggles to find the vocabulary to

express the sentiment she feels and shows, but actually uses language that would be the

basis for modern day cliches and terms of endearment.

The depth of their companionship also shines through in the letters written whilst

one of them is away from home. In 1796, d'Arblay was away while Burney was at home

with young Alex. Burney writes, "Dearest At! [Alex's name for d'Arblay]--come back to

us on Friday,--J'ai beau vantee mon hermitage,--it won't do without my hermit!"

(Hemlow, III, 156). Not only does Bumey miss her husband, but she also equates their

private life at Camilla cottage with that of a hermit. They both sought happiness through

retirement with one another. Much later, in 1814, while Bumey is in England and

d'Arblay is away in Paris, she has not received a letter from him in five weeks. Burney's

next letter reads in part:

Oh mon ami! Objet unique de tout ce qui pour moi est bonheur sur la terre.
entreat some one. .. to write, if you are ill!-which is my continual
dread-and tell me at once HOW to come to you! ... This hope [that the
letters were mis-sent] alone keeps me from despair-and alone prevents









every risk, both of fortune and of precarious heath and safety, to leave all
and fly to you! (Hemlow, VII, P. 385)

At 62 years of age, Burney still expresses the same concern and love for d'Arblay that

one finds in newlyweds. They never cease using a vocabulary of love and concern for

one another; their friendship and closeness stand far from the formalities of mandated

marriages arranged by a patriarch.

Along with his sentiments, d'Arblay's professional disappointments in life make

him a prime choice for a companion. When he realized that his exile from France was

going to be indefinite, he fixed on studying English six hours a day, so that he might

procure some employment. Burney writes, "I fairly confess I see no prospect of success

in this his only hope!--I think it, therefore, a cruel delusion" (Hemlow, II, 135).

D'Arblay's losses deepened when he and Burney later returned to France. While forced

to remain in France during the Napoleonic Wars, Burney writes to her father, "Misseur

d'Arblay has found so nearly nothing remaining of his natural and hereditary claims in his

own province, that he determined upon applying for some employment" in which he is

"at work all day long at a laborious Bureau" (Hemlow, VI, 516, 524). D'Arblay

constantly struggled to find substantial employment. Tellingly, once the Reign of Terror

ended and Napoleon came to power, d'Arblay chose to remain with Burney at Camilla

cottage while many of his former peers chose to return to France. Subsequently, they

flourished in Napoleon's Grand Arme while d'Arblay remained in England. Ultimately,

d'Arblay chose to pursue domestic happiness first. Burney even goes so far as to mention

his losses and quest for companionship in the same sentence, "He has seen so much of

life, and has suffered so severely from its disappointments, that retreat, with a chosen

Companion, is become his final desire" (Hemlow, II, 179). Without much hope of









employment and a failing effort to seek it, d'Arblay places himself in a position to focus

on Burney and their family. As a failed 'professional,' he lessens his traditional position

of social power. Regardless of the pecuniary difficulty that always plagued the

d'Arblays, d'Arblay's diminished position ultimately was a positive force in his marriage.

D'Arblay's weakened position works in conjunction with his sentimentality to make him

the perfect husband.

Burney also placed a great deal of sentimental value in her writing, especially

during her courtship by d'Arblay. They established their relationship through the

exchange of themes so that they might learn one another's native language. Burney and

d'Arblay even exchanged pens as a symbol of their love. Burney wrote, "Come, little

pen! ...Will you remind me of your right owner, by disdaining to transmit to paper any

sentiment that has not truth for its basis, and honor for its principle" (Hemlow, II, 119).

They also bonded through plans to publish Camilla as a co-venture, whereby d'Arblay

would translate the text to French. For Burney and d'Arblay, writing served as an

intimate medium by which they would come to know one another. Burney and d'Arblay

were able to connect, not only through letter writing, but also through Burney's creative

writing.

Many critics look at Burney's novels as working out particular issues from her

life, including her existence as a female writer and her relationship with her father.

However, little attention has been paid to how her attraction and marriage to d'Arblay, as

an act of companionship based on sentiment, might illuminate the characters in her

fiction. What many critics have noted as the weakness of Burney heroes, actually

resembles the strengths of d'Arblay. In The Wanderer, Albert Harleigh and Sir Jasper









Herrington fit the d'Arblay prototype. Harleigh is the hero, but Jasper offers a valuable

look at a 'reformed' rake who missed his opportunity for companionship. Sir Jasper more

closely resembles the reformed rake, than the naturally sentimental character.

Regardless, Jasper and Harleigh operate from a position and personality based upon

sentiment, rather than traditional acts of heroism. Moreover, though too late for Sir

Jasper, Harleigh and d'Arblay both find themselves in 'professional' situations that

facilitate their making companionate marriages.

Burney presents a range of male professional and social positions in The

Wanderer. Albert's younger brother, Dennis, is a successful lawyer. However, unlike

Albert, Dennis figures minimally in events and never actually appears in the narrative.

Initially, Dennis is offered as the fiancee of Elinor, but this plan fails early in the

narrative. Upon meeting Albert, Elinor soon forgets her involvement with Dennis and

falls in love with Albert. Even Elinor, perhaps the most socially progressive voice in the

novel, finds Dennis unattractive. The Dennis/Albert contrast shows how certain

characteristics resulting from professional position inhibit/enhance the chance for a

companionate match. As an aristocratic male heir, Albert spends the majority of his time

attending social engagements. Harleigh has no need to pursue any sort of professional

career. Dennis, on the other hand, as a younger son must pursue financial gain. The

trials of a profession leave him unavailable to retrieve Elinor in the opening of the novel,

much less allow him the time and opportunity to desire domestic happiness through

retirement. Albert's free time, domestic priority, and lack of professional ambition enable

him to focus his desires and energies on Juliet, rather than on procuring employment.









With time to spend as he pleases, Harleigh can pursue Juliet. Of course, he does

not do this in a typically 'heroic' manner. His sentiment and desire for a companion

render him weak in the eyes of many readers. Harleigh is the new male character

required for a companionate marriage and is unfairly judged against the standard of

powerful patriarchs. Early in the novel, Harleigh shows the depth of his sentiment. After

Lady Aurora has treated Ellis/Juliet kindly upon their first meeting, Burney writes, "The

eyes of the stranger were not now the only ones that glistened. Harleigh could not see her

thus benignly treated, or rather, as he conceived, thus restored to the treatment to which

she had been accustomed, and which he believed her to merit, without feeling tears

moisten his own" (Wanderer p. 105). Rather than using his sentiment to reinscribe his

aristocratic power, Harleigh is simply moved by the treatment of Ellis/Juliet and thus

hides his sentiment. His eyes do not threaten to moisten on his account, but rather on that

of a feeling he experiences due the treatment of Ellis/Juliet.

We also see Harleigh's delicacy when Elinor attempts suicide at the concert in

which Ellis was to perform. After Elinor stabs herself, "Gently, therefore, and with

tenderness, he [Harleigh] continued to support her; carefully forbearing either to irritate

her enthusiasm, or to excite her spirit of controversy" (p. 361). Here, Harleigh's attention

to Elinor's "feelings" helps to soothe her, at least momentarily. Barker-Benfield notes,

"the man of feeling was shown to respect women and make common ground with them."

(p. 249) Harleigh also shows this ability during his theological discussion with Elinor.

He is consistently the male character who displays the greatest sensitivity to the

sentiment of other characters.









Harleigh's sentiment certainly causes a diminution of traditional power. He lacks

the power to rescue Juliet from her troubles. As she contracts, through no fault of her

own, more and more debt, Harleigh can only offer to transfer her debts to himself. He

cannot force Juliet's debtors to pay her for services rendered as a music instructor.

Harleigh's biggest "disappointment" lies in his inability to save Juliet from her "husband."

Upon hearing of her marriage, Harleigh "appeared to be lost... [and] dragged himself back

to his apartment" (p. 730). When the commissar comes to take Juliet away, Harleigh is

"aloof and disconsolate, fixed like a statue, upon a small planed eminence" (p. 736).

Moreover, as Juliet climbs into the carriage to be taken from the inn after the commissar

captures her, Sir Jasper has not "strength, nor Harleigh courage, to offer aid" (p. 736).

Harleigh is so devastated by the events that he is rendered weak and basically

useless. This is not a result of inherent weakness, but rather the price of sentiment. His

love for Juliet prevents his acting as a traditional hero, and he must suffer the

consequences of such strong feelings. His disposition leads Juliet to exclaim, "Had I an

hundred hearts,--ten thousand times you must have conquered them all" (p. 861). Like

d'Arblay, through his sentimentality, and hence feminization with respect to the

patriarchal tradition, Harleigh becomes an attractive choice for companionate marriage.

While Harleigh cannot save Juliet from the Commissar, and certainly does not

ride in on a white horse to rescue her, Juliet is 'rescued' nonetheless. Sir Jasper offers a

revealing counterpart to Harleigh. He represents the decayed patriarch. As the heir of an

entailed estate, Jasper feels the pressures of a failing patrilinear system of succession. He

remarks to Juliet, "You see in me a whimsical, but contrite old bachelor; whose entailed

estate has lost to him his youth, by ungenerous mistrust: but who would gladly devote the









large possessions which have fallen to him collaterally, to making the rest of his

existence companionable" (p. 634, my emphasis). Jasper also states, "When we are

young, in the midst of the world, and in pursuit of beauty, riches, honours, power, fame,

or knowledge, then, when judgment would either guide us to success, or demolish our

senseless expectations, it keeps aloof from us like a stern stranger: and will only hail us

an intimate, when we have no longer any occasion for its services!" (p. 633, my

emphasis). In each of these passages, Sir Jasper laments his delay in choosing a

companion. His vocabulary of "companionable" and "intimate" shows his desire for

something more than the riches, honours, power, etc., that blinded him as a youth. His

failing lies in his failure to have sought a companion in a wife.

The Stonehenge scene near the end of the novel speaks directly to Sir Jasper's

situation. Earlier critics have read this scene through Juliet. She sees, "The form, that

might still be traced, of an antique structure...evidently circular and artificial...Many

(slabs) were fallen: many, with grim menace looked nodding" while others "rested all the

wars of the elements, in this high and bleak situation, for ages" (p. 765). The physical

degeneration of Stonehenge parallels that of Sir Jasper, who has brought Juliet to this

place and totters next to her. Doody's comments are quite helpful here. She views

Stonehenge as a "release from history" (LWp. 364): "Bumey contrives to make

Stonehenge, which might at first seem suitable only to masculine phallic statement and

symbolism, into a feminine place. That which is purely phallic is (like Sir Jasper)

crippled and decayed--although valiantly decayed" (LWp. 366, my emphasis). Doody

makes an important point. The "antique structure" of patriarchal society is falling apart,

much like the form of Stonehenge. Those that remain, exist in a "bleak" situation. Sir









Jasper's disappointed position in life displays this bleakness nicely for the reader. The

remnant of a patriarchal society casts a bleak shadow for the men, as well as the women.

Burney, however, attempts to show the positive results possible from this decay. She

shows the necessary fall of 'powerful' men to 'weaker,' sentimental characters. While Sir

Jasper has become like the decayed slabs of Stonehenge, Harleigh is ultimately saved

from Sir Jasper's fate through his marriage to Juliet.

In her own life, Burney desired a sentimental companion, and this desire

manifests itself in the heroes of her fiction. In The Wanderer, Burney offers a realistic

love story that revolves around the search for a sentimental husband. Granted, this story

is foregrounded with revolution, dangerous economies, and deplorable characters, but the

narrative works toward an understanding between Harleigh and Juliet. Burney offers

Harleigh as a new kind of hero, but seems unsure of where he may fit. In the opening of

the novel, the other characters attempt to understand Harleigh and Juliet as Don Quixote

and Dulcinea. However, the analogy simply does not hold true. The days of Romance,

even of anti-Romance, have passed, and Burney drops this comparison as she distances

her heroes from the romance tradition. While her characters do fall in love in a

sentimental sense, their quest for an emotional understanding reflects the many social,

economic, and political pressures that work to inhibit and block such an understanding.

Moreover, she clearly distances Harleigh from the traditional patriarchal male. Burney

also distances him from the reformed man of feeling that characterized sentimental

fiction. One can see Burney's difficulty in finding a literary precedent for her work. She

may be able to identify with the romance tradition, but certainly departs from it. The

reader is left with a new kind of hero.









I suggest that the best way to understand Harleigh is to look toward Bumey's real-

life hero. Alexandre d'Arblay provided Burney with the feelings, sentiment, and desire

for retirement that allowed them to achieve a remarkably happy marriage. Similarly, we

see Albert Harleigh as a character who is often "unmanned" by his deepest feelings. His

feelings make him an extraordinary hero, but also cause readers to see him as weak.

However, this weakness is in fact one of the most basic reasons for Burney's attraction to

d'Arblay. By examining d'Arblay and why he proved an attractive person to Burney, we

may find a new way to understand Harleigh and the Bumey male. We should avoid the

standard set by strong patriarchs and their despotic rule, and look to a standard of

companionship, the standard to which Bumey subscribed. D'Arblay represents a new

male role in marriage, much like Harleigh represents a new male role in fiction.

Throughout her life with d'Arblay, and in her novels, Bumey was drawn to sentimental

males. They provided the vehicle by which Burney could realize her dreams of living in

blissful retirement. Finding their strength in sentiment and feeling, Alexandre d'Arblay

and Albert Harleigh represent a new kind of hero and a new standard by which to judge

the Burney hero.
















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Clarke, Lorna J. ed. The Letters of Sarah Harriet Burney. Athens: U of Georgia P, 1997.

Croker, John Wilson. Quarterly Review (April 1814).

Crump, Justine. "'Turning the World Upside Down': Madness, Moral Management, and
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Doody, Margaret Anne. Frances Burney: The Life and Works. New Brunswick: Rutgers
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Harman, Claire. Fanny Burney: A Biography. New York: Knopf, 2001.

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Silih, Sara. "'Her Blacks, Her Whites and Her Double Face!': Altering Alterity in The
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BIOGRAPHICAL SKETCH

J. Kevin Jordan was raised in Altamonte Springs, Florida, but is sure to always

mention that he was born in Lexington, Kentucky. He was then relocated to Gainesville

to eventually receive a B.A. in English from the University of Florida.

When Kevin completes his Master of Arts in English, he will first try to find a nice

frame with some sort of etching, then scurry back to Altamonte Springs to be with his son

and teach writing to unsuspecting high school graduates and random friends and family

members.