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The 16th chapter helps us to understand the personality of the characters even better. The Elliots are in Bath and Anne joins them and Mrs. Clay there. The family's cousins, the Dalrymples arrive at town: the way that the characters think about acknowleding their relationship with them shows the differences in their personalities. The Dalrymples are of higher social status and Lady Russell, Mr. Elliot and Anne's father think that the kinship would be beneficial for the family. Even though the Dalrymples are considered to be 'insignificant' apart from their status, Sir Walter forgetting about his pride humbles himself totally to get into their good graces.
Anne thinks Mr. Elliot is a moderate, steady and amiably sensible gentleman, who values the felicities of domestic life. His conversation with her shows that he thinks that only birth, a little education and mannes are required for a good company and out of all these he values birth and manners the most. He tries to convince Anne to ignore how little agreeable the Dalrymples are and to concentrate on the advantages gained by the connexion.
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In the next chapter Anne visits her former governess, Mrs. Smith, who, despite of her difficulties of every sort of content is an open, cheerful lady. She prepares thread-cases and pincushions which supply her with the means of doing good to poor families of the neighbourhood. Mrs. Smith's idea about "good company" is the contrary of Mr. Elliot's: she values the company of her nurse, Mrs. Rooke and finds her a clever, invaluable acquaintance because she helped her, taught her how to knit giving her purpose when she nearly lost hope. I think Mrs. Smith is a nice, open person and her company does Anne more good than Mr. Elliot's. Commparing the way they talk about good company, I have to say that I find Mr. Elliot superficial. In my opinion the people like Mr. Elliot could learn a lot from Mrs. Smith's last sentence: "There is so little real friendship in the world! and unfortunately... there are so many who forget to think seriously till it is almost too late."
In the 18th Chapter Anne gets a letter from Mary Musgrove who tells her that Louisa and Captain Benwick got engaged.
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Actually I was most surprised at Captain Benwick's sudden change of heart. At the beginning he was introduced as an intelligent and gentile man, but falling for Louisa Musgrove proved me that he was not as intelligent as he seemed to be.
On the street Anne meets Admiral Croft, from whom she gets to know that Frederick will come to Bath and he is not at all disappointed about 'losing' Louisa Musgrove to Captain Benwick.
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