Lady Mary and Moll Flanders - Love and Money

Essay by billygoatsgirlUniversity, Bachelor'sA, December 2007

download word file, 13 pages 5.0

Downloaded 20 times

In literature, themes, such as love and money, are often present because they are an important aspect of many reader’s lives. Often, these themes overlap; what love and money mean to one person might not hold true for another. Hence, when examining Daniel Defoe’s novel Moll Flanders and the Lady Mary Wortley Montagu Selected Letters, the themes love and money can easily be compared and contrasted since Defoe’s bawdy main character, Moll Flanders, and Lady Mary Wortley Montagu, a refined female writer of the Eighteenth century, both hold differing views of love and money. While Moll appears at the outset to love money above everything else and even shows that she is willing to sacrifice love for affluence, Montagu’s writing reflects the opposite. She maintains “happynesse [in a marriage] must consist in loving one Another” (83). Thus, both women assert opinions concerning love and money, but in a clearly opposite manner.

It is interesting to notice that throughout theirs lives, even though both women differ greatly among the social spectrum in Eighteenth century England, each woman actually becomes more like the other throughout their respective texts. Specifically, their initial concerns about love and money become contradictions as each woman finds herself with new needs; Moll realizes she needs love and Lady Mary recognizes that she can’t live without money. This paper will show how Moll and Lady Mary’s attitude towards love and money are ultimately transformed because of various factors in their lives which enabled them to understand that they need both love and money equally to be incandescently happy. To understand why both women initially have differing opinions on love and money and what accounted for each woman’s transformation we must look at each woman’s life carefully: concentrating on Moll’s life first, I will examine her early relationship...