What are the similarities between Septimus and Clarissa in Mrs. Dalloway?
Woolf tells us in the introduction to the 1928 eidtion of her book that Septimus is intended to be the double of Mrs. Dalloway. Indeed, she first thought that he might live while Clarissa would die. As a result, many critics understand his death to be a substitute for Clarissa, for if he dies for his war experience (especially the death of his friend) and his inablility to adjust to life, she is able to live, to adjust to the confinements of her married life. Clarissa's meditation on Septimus's death at her party indicates this intuitive closeness she feels to a man she has never known. "Death was defiance," she tells herself. "Death was an attempt to communicate. . . . Had he plunged holding his treasure?" "What a plunge" begins Mrs.Dalloway, and the treasure she holds was her moment when Sally Seton kissed her. Septimus shared a similar close relationship with his friend who died at the front. Clarissa also says at her party, "She felt somehow very lke him....she felt glad that he had done it; thrown it away. . . . He made her feel the beauty."