Mansfield Park

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The Fire in the East Room Symbol Analysis

The Fire in the East Room Symbol Icon

Before Sir Thomas leaves for Antigua and while he is gone, Fanny’s favorite room in the house, the East Room, does not usually have a fire going in it. Fanny, who is afraid to ask for things and appear ungrateful, does not ask for one, and no one notices that the room is cold and thinks to offer one. The lack of a fire seems to symbolize the ways in which Fanny is neglected as a child at Mansfield Park. When Sir Thomas returns from Antigua, however, he begins to take more and more notice of Fanny, who has grown more refined and beautiful. Sir Thomas then insists on lighting a fire in the East Room for her. Lighting the fire shows how Fanny has become an important member of the household and how the Bertrams, though they have had difficulty showing it in the past, love and care for her.

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The Fire in the East Room Symbol Timeline in Mansfield Park

The timeline below shows where the symbol The Fire in the East Room appears in Mansfield Park. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 16
Manners vs. Morality Theme Icon
Inheritance and Meritocracy Theme Icon
In the East Room, there is no fire in the grate, but Fanny still spends her time there, since she can go there... (full context)
Chapter 32
Manners vs. Morality Theme Icon
Inheritance and Meritocracy Theme Icon
...Room. Instead, Sir Thomas comes in and is surprised to find that Fanny has no fire going despite the cold. Sir Thomas insists that she must have a fire, despite Mrs.... (full context)
Inheritance and Meritocracy Theme Icon
...walk outside. Fanny obeys, and when she returns to the East Room she finds a fire burning in the hearth. (full context)