Much like in a Shakespearean comedy, the end result of most of Georgette Heyer’s novels is a marriage. We may not see the wedding and we are certainly never privy to the honeymoon, but make no mistake, from start to finish, a Heyer romance is all about the happy couple. With that in mind, I have carefully selected five popular pairings from Heyer’s Georgian and Regency novels. I present to you below the contenders for Georgette Heyer’s Most Memorable Couple.
Our first couple is Jasper Damerel and Venetia Lanyon from Venetia. Damerel is a jaded and world-weary rake who loses his heart to the intelligent and unspoiled Venetia. Though he fights his feelings for her, in the end he inevitably succumbs to the lure of matrimony. When Venetia selflessly informs him that she does not wish him to marry her if he would rather not be married at all, he responds:
“Then you are by far more unselfish than I am, my dear heart, for I wish to marry you whatever your sentiments may be!”
Our second couple is Frederick Standen and Kitty Charing from Cotillion. After having spent the majority of the novel engaged in a fake betrothal, they ultimately discover that they have fallen in love with each other. Freddy asks:
“You don’t feel you could marry me instead? Got no brains, of course, and I ain’t a handsome fellow, like Jack, but I love you. Don’t think I could ever love anyone else. Daresay it ain’t any use telling you, but—well, there it is!”
Our third couple is Robert Beaumaris and Arabella Tallant from Arabella. Though he initially only sees Arabella as an entertaining diversion, Mr. Beaumaris ends by thoroughly losing his heart. As he says to Arabella at the close of the novel:
“I am strongly of the opinion that you should permit me to escort you home to Heythram as soon as possible: you will naturally wish your father to marry us, and I am extremely impatient to carry off my wife without any loss of time.”
Our fourth couple is the Marquis of Alverstoke and Frederica Merriville from Frederica. Regarded as a great matrimonial prize, Alverstoke has so far evaded the shackles of marriage. That is, until he meets his distant cousin Frederica. When she is inclined to think he is only proposing out of kindness or because he may have compromised her, Alverstoke states in no uncertain terms:
“I am neither good nor kind; I did not compromise you; and if I thought you an object for compassion I should also think you a dead bore, my girl! But you have never bored me.” He possessed himself of her hands, and held them firmly. “The only woman I have ever known who has never done so, and could never do so! I had not thought that such a woman existed, Frederica.”
Our fifth and final couple comes to us from the Georgian era. The Earl of Rule and Horatia Winwood from The Convenient Marriage are one of the few couples in a Heyer novel that marry early on in the story. Rule is initially betrothed to Horry’s elder sister who is, in turn, in love with another. In a bid to free her sister, Horry approaches Rule with a proposal of her own.
“C-could you – would you m-mind very much – having m-me instead?”
Cast your vote for Georgette Heyer’s Most Memorable Couple! There are no limits on how many times you can vote and, as always, if you have a preference for another Georgette Heyer couple (Judith and Worth from Regency Buck, for example, or Léonie and Avon from These Old Shades), I encourage you to write in your choice below.
The Poll is Now Closed.
1st Place: Venetia & Damerel from Venetia with 25%.
2nd Place: Kitty & Freddy from Cotillion with 19%.
3rd Place: Frederica & Alverstoke from Frederica with 15%.
4th Place: Horatia & Rule from The Convenient Marriage with 13%.
5th Place: Arabella & Mr. Beaumaris from Arabella with 11%.
Honorable Mentions: Avon & Léonie from These Old Shades with 15 votes by write-in; Mary & Vidal from Devil’s Cub with 8 votes by write-in; and Judith & Worth from Regency Buck with 6 votes by write-in.
The following Heyer couples garnered at least 1 vote each by write-in: Sarah & Tristram from The Talisman Ring; Phoebe & Sylvester from Sylvester; Sophy & Charles from The Grand Sophy; Jenny & Adam from A Civil Contract; Oliver & Annis from Lady of Quality; Ned & Elinor from The Reluctant Widow; Ivo & Serena from Bath Tangle; Ancilla and Waldo from The Nonesuch; Sherry & Hero from Friday’s Child; Max & Deb from Faro’s Daughter; Miles & Abby from Black Sheep; and Dolph and Miss Plymstock from Cotillion.
Thank you for voting!
The Next Heyer Poll is Wednesday August 5th.
© 2015 Mimi Matthews
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