In Jane Austen’s novel, Pesuasion, she immediately captures the reader’s attention by beginning the story with the main character, Sir Walter Elliot, facing a dilemma. Sir Walter has spent his money unwisely, and ends up in debt. In fact, his debt is so large that the only way to clear it is to sell his pride possession – Kellynch Hall, his home. Sir Walter is deeply saddened by this, but there is no way out. He must sell his home. When Sir Walter agrees to do this, his agent, Mr. Shepherd, produces a list of interested buyers. Sir Walter’s daughters are thrilled that there are so many offers already for their father’s house. They have moved away and are sorry to see their father in debt. Sir Walter, on the other hand, has different ideas. Every time Mr. Shepherd announces that there is an interested buyer, Sir Walter is quick to make an excuse as to why that person is not good enough to live in his house. Excuses such as, “Wentworth? Oh ay! Mr. Wentworth, the curate of Monkford. You misled me by the term gentleman. I thought you were speaking of some man of property. Mr. Wentworth was a nobody…” It is clear that Sir Walter is very upset that he must sell his house, and he will make any excuse possible in order to insure that it will not happen.
I could relate very well to Sir Walter and the disappointment that he felt after realizing that he had to sell his home. A home holds memories. I have lived in my house since I was born, and would miss the memories that were made. Sir Walter may be making silly and amuzing excuses, but it is a real insight into the deep attachment and sentiments he has towards his home.