The Age of Innocence

The Age of Innocence

Medora is one of Mrs. Mingott’s daughters and Ellen’s aunt, who became Ellen’s guardian after the deaths of Ellen’s parents. Medora is one of the most eccentric members of society and she is considered one of the reasons that Ellen has such an unconventional view of the world. Medora has been married and widowed multiple times, and she always seems to be in danger of making another foolish marriage. She travels frequently, returning to New York periodically to buy successively smaller houses, and when Ellen moves to Washington, Medora lives with her.
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Medora Manson Character Timeline in The Age of Innocence

The timeline below shows where the character Medora Manson appears in The Age of Innocence. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 5
Innocence vs. Experience Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
...Archer and Mr. Jackson pity Ellen, implying that her fate was sealed when her guardian, Medora Manson, gave her too much freedom growing up. (full context)
Chapter 8
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
...ten and very pretty. When her parents died, she was taken in by her aunt, Medora Manson. Medora was a wanderer and widow who often tried to settle down with a... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
Ellen’s relations were quickly charmed by her precociousness and foreign talents. Medora Manson gave her an expensive but unconventional education. When Medora’s husband died, she and Ellen... (full context)
Chapter 16
Innocence vs. Experience Theme Icon
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
...that she has very different ideas than most New Yorkers. She recalls the scandal of Medora Manson dressing her in black at her coming-out ball. Having been in Europe for at... (full context)
Chapter 17
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
The guests turn to Archer, and the woman introduces herself as the Marchioness Medora Manson. She’s visiting Ellen from Cuba. She introduces Dr. Agathon Carver, founder of the Valley... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
Medora Manson explains that Dr. Carver lives the life of the spirit and is preparing for... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
Medora Manson expresses her pleasure at everything Archer has done for Ellen. Archer is embarrassed that... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
Archer can’t believe that his first meeting with Medora Manson has her playing messenger to the devil. She says that Ellen doesn’t know anything... (full context)
Chapter 18
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
...her drawing room wearing a shimmering dress and looking like she’s ready for a ball. Medora Manson points out the flowers. Ellen grows suddenly angry, saying the bouquet is ridiculous. She... (full context)
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
Ellen laughs, saying that Medora Manson and Archer have become friends while she fussed with her hair. She sees that... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
Archer says that Medora Manson has told him that Ellen’s husband wants her back. Ellen seems unsurprised. After a... (full context)
Chapter 19
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
...has come in her place. However, everyone approves of her dress. On the other hand, Medora Manson, entering next, is dressed wildly in stripes and fringes. Archer’s heart practically stops. He... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
May says she was surprised that Medora Manson showed up, and she wishes Ellen had come instead. Archer has been dreading her... (full context)
Chapter 21
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
Change and Progress Theme Icon
Medora Manson joins Archer, wearing her usual eccentric clothing. She says she didn’t realize he had... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
Archer and Medora head towards the tent, and Beaufort comes towards them over the lawn, looking fat and... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
...to tell her about the party so she doesn’t have to hear about it from Medora, who is coming by to pick up Ellen. Ellen has been spending the day with... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
...to people talk about her as though he was hearing about someone dead, but when Medora spoke her name at the archery match, his last night in Ellen’s house suddenly became... (full context)
Chapter 22
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
As soon as he heard about the Sillertons’ party, Archer realized that Medora Manson would probably be coming in to Newport for it, and Ellen might go to... (full context)
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
Change and Progress Theme Icon
...Ellen’s hair. She doesn’t know why Ellen went to Boston; it seemed Ellen didn’t want Medora to know. Archer suddenly sees his future empty before him and feels that nothing will... (full context)
Chapter 24
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
...York society, so she decided to try Washington. She’ll probably make a home there for Medora, who’s always in danger of making a bad marriage. Archer is surprised that Ellen isn’t... (full context)
Chapter 26
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
...back now, but Mr. Jackson seems to have been waiting for this. He says that Medora Manson’s money is in Beaufort’s hands, and if he fails, Medora and Ellen will be... (full context)
Chapter 32
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
...that afternoon. Ellen writes that Mrs. Mingott understands that she must return to Europe with Medora, and she is going to Washington immediately to pack before sailing the next week. Furthermore,... (full context)
Chapter 33
The Failure of Marriage Theme Icon
The Rules of Society Theme Icon
American vs. Foreign Theme Icon
...in comparison to her life with Count Olenski. Now Ellen is going to Paris with Medora, and Mrs. Mingott will miss her fiercely. She just wants the family to leave her... (full context)