Last Updated on May 6, 2015, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 604
Fanny Price, the heroine of the novel. Brought up by the Bertrams at Mansfield Park, she is timid and self-effacing and is constantly reminded by her Aunt Norris of her position as a poor relation. She has always loved Edmund Bertram, the second son. Henry Crawford falls in love with her and proposes, but she refuses him, for she considers him shallow and worldly. Thus she angers Sir Thomas Bertram, who feels that she has thrown away her best chance for marriage. Later, when both Bertram daughters disgrace themselves, Sir Thomas understands Fanny’s real worth. Edmund, who had thought himself in love with Mary Crawford, is shocked by her attitude toward his sisters’ behavior and realizes that he actually loves Fanny. They are married at the end of the novel.
Sir Thomas Bertram
Sir Thomas Bertram, a wealthy baronet, the owner of Mansfield Park. He is dignified, reserved, fundamentally kind and just, but too remote from his children to understand them. Though fond of Fanny Price, he is angered by her refusal to marry Henry Crawford; however, when his daughters disgrace him, he realizes that Fanny has a better judgment of people than he and is happy when she marries his younger son.
Lady Bertram, his wife, the spoiled beauty of her family. She is an indolent, self-indulgent, good-natured woman.
Mrs. Norris, her sister, the widow of a clergyman. A stingy, ill-tempered busybody, she is unbearably severe to her poor niece, Fanny Price, but lavish in her flattery of the rich Bertrams. Her flattery does much to ruin the characters of the Bertram daughters. After Maria Bertram’s divorce, Mrs. Norris goes to live with her.
Mrs. Price, the third sister, Fanny’s mother. She has made the worst marriage, her husband being a lieutenant of marines without fortune or connections. They have nine children and live on the edge of poverty.
Lieutenant Price, her husband, a marine officer disabled for active service. He is uncouth but good-natured.
William Price, their son, in the Royal Navy. The favorite of his sister Fanny, he gets his promotion through the Crawfords’ friendship with her.
Tom Bertram, the older son of Sir Thomas. He is headstrong, worldly, and idle, but a severe illness sobers him.
Edmund Bertram, the second son, a serious young man who desires to take holy orders. He fancies himself in love with Mary Crawford until, disgusted by her cynical attitude toward the clergy and by her easy acceptance of his sisters’ conduct, he becomes aware that he really loves Fanny Price. They are married and live near Mansfield Park.
Maria Bertram, the older daughter, spoiled and selfish. She marries wealthy Mr. Rushworth but tires of him, runs off with Henry Crawford, and is irretrievably disgraced.
Julia Bertram, the second daughter, equally spoiled. She elopes with Mr. Yates and by so doing cuts herself off from her family.
Henry Crawford, a wealthy young man who flirts with Maria Bertram. He falls in love with Fanny Price, but she refuses him, and he elopes with Maria. They separate after a few months.
Mary Crawford, his sister. She is cynical and worldly but attracts Edmund Bertram. He is disillusioned and repelled when she takes his sisters’ conduct so casually.
Mr. Rushworth, the rich but brainless husband of Maria Bertram, whom she deserts for Henry Crawford.
Mr. Yates, a fashionable young man who visits Mansfield Park and eventually elopes with Julia Bertram. The marriage greatly displeases her father.
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