Rowson’s characterization of Montraville is more nuanced than it initially seems

Rowson’s characterization of Montraville is more nuanced than it initially seems

“What am I about? . Though I cannot marry Charlotte, I cannot be villain enough to forsake her, nor must I dare to trifle with the heart of Julia Franklin. I will return this box . which has been the source of so much uneasiness already, and in the evening pay a visit to my poor melancholy Charlotte, and endeavour to forget this fascinating Julia.”

In Chapter I, the young captain appears to be a dashing womanizer with no regard for the consequences of his actions. While before, Montraville proclaimed himself someone who “never think[s] of the future” (4), he is now determined to treat Charlotte as honorably as possible, even though he can’t marry her. Montraville’s good intentions add a layer of complexity to his character while also enhancing the realism of the story, since few young women would voluntarily elope with a man who was obviously evil and did not care for them.

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