Blanche=Salvation

In chapter 19, Jane proceeds to the library to have her fortune read by the mysterious gypsy woman. Although Jane is extremely skeptical at first, she becomes enthralled when the gypsy reveals that she knows much about Jane, and that she is very close to happiness. The gypsy also reveals to Jane that she told Blanche Ingram that Mr. Rodchester is not nearly as wealthy as he appears to be, which explains the dejected state that Blanche was in when she returned from getting her fortune told. While the gypsy woman is reading her fortune, however, Jane realizes that her voice is becoming deeper and it is revealed that the gypsy is in fact Mr. Rodchester, who has been feigning a womanly voice. Jane reproachfully scolds him, realizing that her suspicions that Grace Poole was the gypsy have been explained.  Jane also tells Rodchester that Mr. Mason has arrived, and Bronte foreshadows later events by describing how troubled Mr. Rodchester is to hear this news.

Late into that night, while all the guests are asleep, a cry erupts from one of the rooms. All of the guests hurry into the hallway, where Rodchester calms all of them by explaining that it was simply a servant having a nightmare. When everyone returns to bed, Rodchester privately goes to Jane’s quarters and asks if he can have her help. He also mentions that she should not assist him if she is afraid of blood. Curious, Jane follows him up to the third floor of the house where she finds Mr. Mason, who has been stabbed in the arm.  Rodchester charges Jane with the task of stopping the bleeding in Mason’s arm, and leaves, telling Mason and Jane not to speak to one another. While she waits, Jane looks at an image of Christ and the apostles at the crucifixion. This reiterates the continuing theme throughout the story of sin and forgiveness. By using a well-known and strong religious image, Bronte continues the thematic elements of sin and forgiveness that is brought up by Jane and Rodchester in previous chapters. When a surgeon arrives and Mr. Mason is off to be healed, Rodchester asks Jane to go for a stroll through the orchard with him. While they walk, Rodchester tells Jane the story of a man who commits a crime in a foreign country. In an effort to find salvation, the man attempts to live morally with a wife, however fate’s intervention prevents him from doing so. He asks if such a man should “overleap an obstacle of custom” to find happiness. Jane responds by saying that such a man should turn to God to salvation, not another person. Rodchester, who makes it clear that he has been speaking of himself this entire time, says that marrying Blanche would bring him salvation. The conversation relating to salvation and forgiveness continues the religious context throughout the story.

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