I am nearly finished reading Charlotte Bronte’s Shirley. I knew I would love it, and I do. However, I have a question for any Bronte sister experts out there. Shirley’s old governess, Mrs. Pryor, turns out to be Agnes Grey, who also happens to be the title character of Anne Bronte’s novel. I could maybe understand how Agnes from Anne’s novel becomes timid Mrs. Pryor (if I accounted for a lot of stress in her life), but the husbands don’t match up. So is it just a recycled name, or is there some sort of real relation between the Agnes in Anne’s book and the one in Charlotte’s book?
In my brief online research, I’ve discovered that many characters in Shirley relate to real people in Charlotte’s family and social circle. For instance, Shirley might be Emily if Emily had been born rich. I wish my own sisters were writers. We could have created strange worlds together, and shared character names, and become the world-renown Pausma sisters. These are the crazy things I sometimes dream about:)