Mansfield Park

Publisher: Bantam Classics
In Mansfield Park, first published in 1814, when the author had reached her full maturity as a novelist, Jane Austen paints some of her most witty and perceptive studies of character. Against a genteel country landscape of formal parks and stately homes, the gossipy Mrs. Norris becomes a masterful comic creation; the fickle young suitor Henry Crawford provides an unequaled portrait of an unscrupulous young man; and the complexly drawn Fanny Price emerges as one of Jane Austen’s finest achievements—the poor cousin who comes to stay with her wealthy relatives at Mansfield Park and learns how the game of love can too easily turn to folly. More intricately plotted and wider in scope than Austen’s earlier works, Mansfield Park continues to enchant and delight us as a superb example of a great author’s craft.

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Chapter One


ABOUT THIRTY years ago, Miss Maria Ward of Huntingdon, with only seven thousand pounds, had the good luck to captivate Sir Thomas Bertram, of Mansfield Park, in the county of Northampton, and to be thereby raised to the rank of a baronet's lady, with all the comforts and consequences of an...
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READING GUIDE

1. Though it was very successful, Jane Austen deemed Pride and Prejudice, her second novel, ?rather too light.? As Carol Shields mentions in her Introduction, Austen hoped to address more serious issues in her next novel, Mansfield Park. Many readers and critics think Mansfield Park is Austen?s most serious and most...

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PRAISE FOR

"Never did any novelist make more use of an impeccable sense of human values."—Virginia Woolf