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Day 19

Villette by Charlotte Brontë

Chapter XXVI

December 3, 2022 by Yiyun Li

I rather enjoy the relationship between Madame Beck and Lucy: refreshingly unfussy and unemotional, unlike most female relationships we read

One day after she had borrowed them of me (in speaking of so suave a little woman, one ought to use suave terms)...

Only M. Paul thinks of Lucy as fiery, rash, adventurous, indocile, and audacious—perhaps only M. Paul has paid real and worthy attention to Lucy.

What contradictory attributes of character we sometimes find ascribed to us…

Lucy calls Paulina an Undine. According to the Penguin Classics edition, an Undine is a water nymph who could obtain a soul by marrying a mortal, and the basis for “The Little Mermaid.”

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