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Course Hero, "Persuasion Study Guide," November 28, 2016, accessed July 22, 2017, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/Persuasion/.

Persuasion | Chapter 19 (Volume 2, Chapter 7) | Summary

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Summary

Captain Wentworth arrives in Bath. While out with William Elliot and several others, Anne sees him unexpectedly. She has time to collect herself, but when he spots her he is "confused." He approaches and struggles to begin a conversation. Elizabeth Elliot refuses to acknowledge him. After offering to escort Anne or arrange alternative transportation because of the rain, she explains she is waiting for someone (because of limited room in the carriage, she has volunteered to walk with William Elliot). When her cousin arrives Wentworth recognizes him as the man who had admired Anne at Lyme, and Anne leaves with a "gentle and embarrassed glance."

After the Elliot cousins' departure, the women in Captain Wentworth's group gossip about William Elliot's intentions toward Anne. Anne, meanwhile, is reflecting on the surprise meeting with her former fiancé and finds her cousin's excessive chatter annoying.

In town the next day Anne spots Captain Wentworth approaching and watches Lady Russell "anxiously." As he passes her friend looks at him but claims she has been examining the curtains of the neighboring houses.

After a few quiet days the Elliots plan to attend a concert. Anne, knowing Captain Wentworth loves music, expects to see him there and is excited about the possibility. She reschedules her plans with Mrs. Smith, who says she has a "foreboding that [she] may not have many more visits from [Anne]."

Analysis

The suddenness of Captain Wentworth's appearance (Anne sees him on her next venture out of the house) suggests planning on his part. It also suggests he harbors romantic feelings for Anne.

With a break in the narration of plot, readers "listen" to the gossip of the women in Wentworth's group, who speak highly of Anne and say of her relationship with William Elliot, "One can guess what will happen there. He is always with them; half lives in the family."

The symbol of music appears at the chapter's end. As it is a shared passion between Anne and Captain Wentworth, she hopes the concert will attract him. If he attends Anne intends to speak with him, feeling she is justified because both Elizabeth and Lady Russell have refused to acknowledge him. The importance of the encounter is so great that she cancels plans with Mrs. Smith, whom she previously favored above her father's social arrangements. Anne is "startled and confused" by Mrs. Smith's ominous prediction that she won't see Anne anymore.

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