Lady Audley’s Secret

Lady Audley’s Secret


Mary Elizabeth Braddon

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Mrs. Dawson Character Analysis

Mrs. Dawson is the wife of Mr. Dawson and former employer of Lucy Graham. She councils Lucy after Sir Michael’s proposal, telling her that while this match would mean a huge boost in Lucy’s status and wealth, she must reject Sir Michael if she does not love him back. Mrs. Dawson’s comments underscore the difficult and contradicting expectations Victorian women lived under, given that they could and were often encouraged to marry for wealth and status yet had to act as though they were only marrying for love.

Mrs. Dawson Quotes in Lady Audley’s Secret

The Lady Audley’s Secret quotes below are all either spoken by Mrs. Dawson or refer to Mrs. Dawson. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Women and Power in Victorian England Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Oxford University Press edition of Lady Audley’s Secret published in 1987.
Volume 1, Chapter 1 Quotes

“You know that nobody asks you to marry Sir Michael unless you wish. Of course it would be a magnificent match; he has a splendid income, and is one of the most generous of men. Your position would be very high, and you would be enabled to do a great deal of good; but, as I said before, you must be entirely guided by your own feelings.”

Page Number: 13
Explanation and Analysis:
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Mrs. Dawson Character Timeline in Lady Audley’s Secret

The timeline below shows where the character Mrs. Dawson appears in Lady Audley’s Secret. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Volume 1, Chapter 1
Women and Power in Victorian England Theme Icon
Appearances and Deception Theme Icon
Poverty and Wealth Theme Icon
Lucy was so used to being adored that she barely noticed Sir Michael’s attention. Mrs. Dawson , her employer, told her that while marrying Sir Michael would be socially and financially... (full context)