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Mansfield Park | Chapter Summaries

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Timeline of Events

  • 1780–86

    About 30 years before the story begins, the Ward sisters marry: one very well, one well, one poorly.

    Chapter 1
  • 1796–97

    Mrs. Price reconciles with her wealthier sisters and sends 10-year-old Fanny to Mansfield Park.

    Chapter 1
  • 1806

    Sir Thomas and Tom travel to Antigua, leaving Edmund in charge of the estate.

    Chapter 3
  • Late 1807–early 1808

    Maria and Rushworth become engaged.

    Chapter 4
  • Summer 1808

    Mary and Henry Crawford arrive to live at the Parsonage with the Grants.

    Chapter 5
  • Summer 1808

    The group visits Sotherton; Maria and Henry flirt; Julia is jealous; Edmund falls for Mary.

    Chapter 9
  • August–September 1808

    Tom, back from Antigua, encourages the theatricals, to Edmund and Fanny's dismay.

    Chapter 13
  • September 1808

    Edmund decides to perform in the play as Mary's character's lover, saddening Fanny.

    Chapter 16
  • October–November 1808

    Sir Thomas returns early, ending theatricals. Henry leaves, disappointed, and Maria is heartbroken.

    Chapter 20
  • December 1808–early 1809

    Henry courts Fanny and brings about William's promotion; the family urges Fanny to marry Henry.

    Chapter 31
  • Later in 1809

    Edmund is ordained, to Mary's severe disappointment, and the Crawfords return to London.

    Chapter 34
  • February–April 1809

    Fanny visits her family in Portsmouth; Maria and Henry flirt in London.

    Chapter 40
  • May 1809

    Maria and Henry run off; Julia and Yates elope; Edmund arrives in Portsmouth to bring Fanny home.

    Chapter 46
  • May 1809 and later

    Characters receive rewards for good behavior and punishment for bad. Edmund and Fanny marry.

    Chapter 48

Chapter Summaries Chart

Chapter Summary
Chapters 1–3 Mansfield Park was originally published in three volumes, each of which began with Chapter 1. More recent versions, howe... Read More
Chapters 4–6 Edmund manages the estate in his father's absence, Mrs. Norris helps Maria and Julia make their debut into society, an... Read More
Chapters 7–9 The next day, Edmund asks Fanny what she thinks of Mary's freeness of speech. Though Fanny assumes Edmund's sincere in... Read More
Chapters 10–12 Rushworth, Maria, and Henry find Fanny at the bench and, after commiserating with her, begin discussing landscaping ag... Read More
Chapters 13–15 One of the guests at the Bertrams' ball is Tom's friend John Yates, a fashionable younger son of a nobleman and of who... Read More
Chapters 16–18 Fanny goes to bed troubled by Tom's demands and Mrs. Norris's accusations of being stubborn and ungrateful. She spends... Read More
Chapters 19–20 Horrified at Sir Thomas's "most unwelcome, most ill-timed, most appalling" arrival, the guilt-ridden Bertram siblings ... Read More
Chapters 21–23 Life is less lively at Mansfield Park after Sir Thomas's homecoming. Edmund misses the Crawfords (by whom he means mai... Read More
Chapters 24–26 At the Parsonage, Henry explains to Mary his intention to stay a few weeks and amuse himself by making Fanny, who is m... Read More
Chapters 27–29 Fanny's ambivalence about Mary's gift increases when Edmund surprises her with his own gift—a simple gold chain to wea... Read More
Chapters 30–31 Mary feels less worried after talking with Fanny and is cheered by Henry's arrival from London. The next day, he visit... Read More
Chapters 32–34 Fanny wakes the next day sure Henry will not trouble her again; however, he arrives early to discuss his proposal with... Read More
Chapters 35–36 Edmund decides to let Fanny choose whether to talk with him about Henry—and sticks to his decision for a few hours unt... Read More
Chapters 37–39 Watching Fanny closely for signs she misses Henry's attention, Sir Thomas sees none, while Edmund is surprised how sel... Read More
Chapters 40–42 When a letter finally arrives from Mary, Fanny, in "exile from good society," surprisingly welcomes it. Mary writes th... Read More
Chapters 43–45 Two days later, Mary writes Fanny to tell her, at Henry's request, what she already knows—he visited her at Portsmouth... Read More
Chapters 46–48 A week later, a letter arrives from Mary. Fanny opens it prepared to read Mary's renewed offer to come to Portsmouth w... Read More
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