Money Advice from ‘Mansfield Park’

“[W]ealth is luxurious and daring” (Ch. 40)

Jane-Austen-ten-pound-noteTwo pieces of advice from Mansfield Park:

• “A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of.” — Miss Crawford (Ch. 22)

• “Those who have not more must be satisfied with what they have.” — Mrs. Rushworth (Ch. 12)

And some more quotations about money from Mansfield Park:

Mrs. Norris:

As far as walking, talking, and contriving reached, she was thoroughly benevolent, and nobody knew better how to dictate liberality to others; but her love of money was equal to her love of directing, and she knew quite as well how to save her own as to spend that of her friends. (Ch. 1)

Mary Crawford:

“I shall understand all your ways in time; but, coming down with the true London maxim, that everything is to be got with money, I was a little embarrassed at first by the sturdy independence of your country customs.” (Ch. 6)

“Nothing amuses me more than the easy manner with which everybody settles the abundance of those who have a great deal less than themselves.” (Ch. 23)

Edmund would be forgiven for being a clergyman, it seemed, under certain conditions of wealth; and this, [Fanny] suspected, was all the conquest of prejudice which he was so ready to congratulate himself upon. She had only learnt to think nothing of consequence but money. (Ch. 45)

Henry Crawford:

Miss Crawford, who had been repeatedly eyeing Dr. Grant and Edmund, now observed, “Those gentlemen must have some very interesting point to discuss.”

“The most interesting in the world,” replied her brother — “how to make money; how to turn a good income into a better.” (Ch. 23)

Lady Bertram:

[B]eauty and wealth were all that excited her respect. (Ch. 33)

Fanny Price:

It had very early occurred to her that a small sum of money might, perhaps, restore peace for ever on the sore subject of the silver knife, canvassed as it now was continually, and the riches which she was in possession of herself, her uncle having given her £10 at parting, made her as able as she was willing to be generous. (Ch. 40)

Fanny found it impossible not to try for books again. There were none in her father’s house; but wealth is luxurious and daring, and some of hers found its way to a circulating library. (Ch. 40)


Illustration: A £10 bank note to be issued by the Bank of England in 2017. (Here is an interesting article about it, if you wish for more information on the subject: “Jane Austen to Grace British 10-pound Notes. Our Nominees for U.S. Currency Are…”)