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Chapter 19 Notes from The Age of Innocence

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The Age of Innocence Chapter 19

The wedding is as perfect and proper as anything New York society could desire. Archer though, is in a daze. At one point, he perks up when he catches a glimpse of someone who reminds him of Ellen. Otherwise, he feels more like an observer than the groom at his own wedding.

After the ceremony, as he and May drive off in their carriage, he chatters lightheartedly even as his emotions are in turmoil.

On their way to Rhinebeck, where Archer's elderly du Lac aunts have given their home as a honeymoon destination, Archer thinks about his new bride and her lack of awareness.

"Perhaps that faculty of unawareness was what gave her eyes their transparency, and her face the look of representing a type rather than a person; as if she might have been chosen to pose for a Civic Virtue or a Greek goddess." Chapter 19, pg. 154

When they arrive at the train station, the van der Luydens' servant is waiting to meet them. He tells Archer and May that a water leak in the du Lacs' house makes it impossible for them to stay there, but informs them that Mr. van der Luyden has offerred the Patroon's house on his own property. May is excited by the idea of staying in the little cottage, which Ellen had enthusiastically described to her. Archer is momentarily overwhelmed by the idea of spending his honeymoon in a place that holds so many memories of Ellen, but he pretends to be excited for May's sake . . . and also to convince himself of their luck for the future.

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