Elinor finally persuaded Marianne to go out with her and Mrs. Jennings one morning. They went to a jeweler, where they saw a rude gentleman giving orders for a toothpick case to be made. The gentleman stared at Marianne and Elinor briefly, though Marianne did not notice, as she was lost in her thoughts.
Elinor quickly pinpoints the gentleman’s character as rather rude. Marianne, though, is still too carried away by her feelings and thoughts to really notice.
Elinor walked up to the counter in the jewelry store, and was surprised to see her brother, John Dashwood. He said that he had arrived in London two days ago, but hadn’t had time yet to pay his sisters a visit. He promised to visit the next day, and looked forward to meeting the Middletons and Mrs. Jennings, who Elinor politely said were kind and friendly.
John looks forward to meeting Mrs. Jennings and the Middletons through the mutual acquaintance of his sisters, despite the fact that he has let down his sisters so profoundly (a fact he doesn't even seem to remember).
The next day, John visited his sisters, though Fanny was unable to join him. John was kind and polite to Mrs. Jennings and his sisters. Colonel Brandon arrived, and John looked at him curiously, as if “he only wanted to know him to be rich, to be equally civil to him.”
John is polite, but appears snobbish, as if he wants to know how wealthy Colonel Brandon is before he forms an opinion of him.
Elinor walked with John to the Middletons’ home, and on the way he asked her about Colonel Brandon. He asked what Brandon’s fortune was like, and then congratulated Elinor on the prospect of marrying him. He was certain that Brandon liked her. Elinor denied this. John was sure of it, though, and though he wished Brandon had more money, he was still pleased with the match.
John is interested in Colonel Brandon’s finances because he thinks that Brandon is interested in marrying Elinor and he wants his sister to marry into a decent fortune, for her benefit but also for his own.
John mentioned that Edward Ferrars was to be married soon, as his mother had matched him up with a Miss Morton, a very wealthy woman. He began talking of finances, and said that his income was not as much “as many people suppose.” He had recently purchased a property, and wished he had more money, as Norland was expensive to maintain.
Mrs. Ferrars has arranged a match for Edward based only on Miss Morton’s wealth, unaware that he has already entered into an engagement because of love. John himself is very wealthy, but still desires more money.
John described his plans for a green-house at Norland, which required the removal of a number of trees on the property, which Elinor and Marianne had been fond of. Elinor “kept her concern and censure to herself.” John congratulated Elinor on having Mrs. Jennings as a friend, because of her “exceeding good income.” He hinted that she might even leave some money to Elinor in her will.
In order to construct the greenhouse, John has removed the trees that Elinor and Marianne had valued. Marianne would likely not be able to restrain her outrage at this violation of taste, as Elinor does. John is interested in Mrs. Jennings’ friendship mainly because of her money.
John asked Elinor what was wrong with Marianne. Elinor said that she had “a nervous complaint.” John said that Fanny used to think Marianne would marry before Elinor but now he was worried whether Marianne would find a good husband. He again said that he thought it was likely Brandon would marry Elinor.
Elinor makes a polite excuse for Marianne’s depression and extreme emotions. John’s main concern for his sisters is that they are able to find good husbands (which would also eliminate any potential for them to be dependent on him).
John and Elinor made it to the Middletons, where “abundance of civilities passed on all sides.” John was delighted with Lady Middleton and Sir John, and was eager of introducing Fanny to them. He said that Fanny had been worried that Mrs. Jennings and Lady Middleton were not worth associating with, as Mrs. Jennings’ husband had gotten his money “in a low way,” but now he could “carry her a most satisfactory account of both.”
John is delighted to expand his circle of upper-class social acquaintances. Fanny and John are mostly interested in socializing as a means of social climbing. It is not enough for one to be wealthy to earn their esteem: one must acquire money in the proper manner, not “in a low way.”