Letters 6-10 Summary

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Clarissa writes to Anna, telling her about her brother's request that she go to his estate in Scotland to help him run his estate. James has recovered from the wound imposed on him by Mr. Lovelace. He has not, however, gotten over his bitter feelings toward the man.

Clarissa knows that her brother is merely attempting to get her away from any more advances by Mr. Lovelace. She also senses that if she were to go with him to Scotland, she would end up acting more as a maid for him than as a sister.

Fortunately, Clarissa's mother is against James' suggestion as she knows that Clarissa's older sister would not be as helpful as Clarissa is at home. Her father agrees with James that it might be good for Clarissa to get away as long as she promises not to entertain Lovelace.

One uncle points out that if Mr. Lovelace is persistent in pursuing Clarissa, would it not be better for Lovelace to come to this home rather than to seek her out at James' estate, where there is sure to be trouble because Lovelace and James share bitter feelings for one another?

Clarissa offers her own suggestion, that of going to Anna Howe's home, the young woman with whom Clarissa constantly corresponds. The father eventually agrees to this despite James' objections.

Clarissa is supposed to stay with Anna for an extended period of time, according to their arrangements. However, one day, without forewarning, her father's carriage appears at Anna's home, and Clarissa is ordered to come home immediately.

Upon arriving home, Clarissa learns that the family has arranged a new suitor for her. Several men have made their appearances prior to this new appointment, but Clarissa has rejected all of them. She has known of Mr. Solmes, a man she finds exceedingly unpleasant to look at and someone of little intelligence who is illiterate and has no understanding of finances nor husbandry. When Clarissa writes to Anna, she describes Solmes as someone who would make a "hideous lover."

The family is insistent, however. They have heard that while Clarissa was at Anna's, Mr. Lovelace came to call more than six times. Clarissa does not deny this. She tells them that it was not her right to prohibit Anna's parents from opening their doors to the visitor. She states that although she was in Lovelace's company at times, she never was with him alone.

This statement satisfies no one. Her brother and sister turn against Clarissa, finding her to be conceited and arrogant because she refuses to consider Mr. Solmes. They tell their father that Clarissa is not being honest with him and has disobeyed him.

The father believes this and will have nothing more to do with Clarissa, even threatening to disown her if she does not comply with his wishes for her to marry Solmes. Until she does, her father insists that Clarissa not leave the house, not even to go to church, lest Lovelace should be there.

He also forbids Clarissa to write any more letters to Anna. On this last issue, Clarissa does truly disobey her father. She determines a way to hide her letters in the "wood house" at the back of the estate where only she and one maid go. Clarissa will hide her letters there and suggests that Anna have one of her servants retrieve it. After Anna has responded in a letter of her own, she is to have it put in the same place so that Clarissa can receive it and read it.

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Letters 1-5 Summary


Letters 11-15 Summary