Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1946/11471
The subject of this thesis is the male suitor from the 19th century novel and his gentlemanly behavior. I review three male suitors from three different novels. The suitors are Mr. Edward Ferrars in Sense and Sensibility (1811) by Jane Austen, Mr. Edward Fairfax Rochester in Jane Eyre (1847) by Charlotte Brontë and Angel Clare in Tess of the d’Urbervilles (1891) by Thomas Hardy. Those three men’s personalities are scrutinized, I analyze their character and also their behavior towards their lady. They belong to different eras of the 19th century but they all come from the same traditional background when it comes to marriages and the family status in the society. They have to follow certain rules but ultimately they go their own ways each with their heart set on marrying the woman he loves. I consider the secrecy around them and how they prove themselves worthy of their lady’s love after concealing their secrets from the past. I look into the aspect of being a gentleman and how the three suitors are comparable to being the genuine gentlemen: the definition of a gentleman and which one best fits to that classification. The conclusion is that Mr. Ferrars and Mr. Rochester are gentlemen and are defined as such. Even though their behavior is not at all times perfect they do rise to the occasion and are true gentlemen. However, Angel Clare cannot be considered a gentleman because of his behavior towards his lady. He has his own secrets and problems from his past but he is not able to see past his lady’s secrets and turns her away. His behavior is far from being gentlemanly and thus is not considered a gentleman like Mr. Ferrars and Mr. Rochester.