Charlotte Bronte’s Jane Eyre has sold over 500,000 copies in the past 50 years to no one’s surprise. Jane Eyre tells the story about an orphaned girl and her journey to adulthood. At the beginning of the novel, Jane lives with her aunt and cousins, The Reeds. Her life there is nothing short of unfair, so she gets sent to Lowood Institution, which is equally, if not more, terrible. By the time Jane is in her early adult years, she moves to Thornfield Hall and becomes a governess for a man by the name of Mr.
Rochester. Here she tackles a rebellious relationship with him, that turns into a complete mess with his hidden secret. She runs away from Thornfield and finds herself at Moor House, with St. John and his sisters. Jane is happiest here but will leave due to reasons beyond her control. By the end of the novel, Jane is living at Ferndean Manor with Mr. Rochester, which is a happy ending to a strange love story.
Oxford university refers to setting as the place or type of surroundings where something is positioned or where an event takes place. With all of Jane’s struggles and hardships ranging from Gateshead Hall and Lowood School to Thornfield Hall and Ferndean Manor, no setting has had the most importance to Jane’s Character Development as Moor House due to Jane’s longing for a family and compassion, as well as solitude from her troubled past at Thornfield Hall.
When Jane first enters Moor House she can’t help but to use vivid imagery to describe the physical surroundings of Moor House.
“In the gray, small, antique structure, with its low roof, its latticed casements, its moldering walls, its avenue of aged firs-all grown aslant under the stress of mountain winds” (Bronte 333). This quote helps to exemplify the physical surroundings of Jane’s home for the next several months. To Jane, this is a new type of home for her. From her post at Thornfield Hall with its multiple stories of long hallways and spacious rooms to a quaint, country house. This is a much-needed change to further develop Jane’s characters. She needs to find solitude and inner peace while at Moor House.
While Jane is describing the physical surroundings, she brings up a quote that could also work from a physiological standpoint. “Its garden, dark with yew and holly-where no flowers but the hardiest species would bloom-found a charm both potent and permanent” (Bronte 333). While this may seem to be a part of the garden of Moor House, by digging deeper the physiological hints of Jane’s past reveal itself. While at Thornfield, Jane would walk the gardens with Mr. Rochester religiously. Flowers and gardens symbolize the blooming of a relationship due to Rochester’s proposal by the chestnut tree and Jane’s new love triangle with St. John and Rosemary Oliver, which is similar to the early stages of Jane and Rochester’s professional relationship with Blanche Ingram.
Moor House can also be seen as to mirror Thornfield. It is another rebirth in the novel as a symbol of Jane’s independence. Jane is also seen at a crossroads with a similar relationship as to Mr. Rochester. St. John quickly falls in love with Jane and wants her to marry him. “God and nature intended you for a missionary’s wife. It is not personal, but mental endowments they have given you: you are formed for labor, not for love. A missionary’s wife you must be-shall be. You shall be mine: I claim you not for my pleasure, but for my Sovereigns service” (Bronte 464). Just as quickly Jane has found her place at Moor House and regains closure for the family, she quickly gets to a crossroads between staying at Moor House and marrying St. John, or moving back to Thornfield to rekindle the fire between her and Mr. Rochester. St. John’s person is distinctly juxtaposed to Mr. Rochester’s character.
While Jane is glad she found family at Moor House, she can’t bury her deep feelings of attraction towards Mr. Rochester as she leaves Moor House to travel back to Thornfield Hall. Jane is in awe at the scene of Thornfield engulfed in flames. After hearing of what Bertha has done to Mr. Rochester, the building, and the other servants, she travels to Ferndean Manor to spend the rest of her life with Mr. Rochester and start a family.
In conclusion, Moor House set as a peaceful, serene escape from heartbreak and helped Jane grow as a teacher, companion, and woman. Without Moor House, Jane never would have found any blood relatives or further her teachings. With all of Jane’s struggles and hardships ranging from Gateshead Hall and Lowood School to Thornfield Hall and Ferndean Manor, no setting has had the most importance to Jane’s Character Development as Moor House due to Jane’s longing for a family and compassion, as well as solitude from her troubled past at Thornfield Hall. Reading this essay can enlighten a reader of Jane Eyre to further understand and analyze the importance of Moor House to both the novel’s plot and of Jane’s development.
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