Jane Eyre HTML version

Chapter 30
The more I knew of the inmates of Moor House, the better I liked them. In a few
days I had so far recovered my health that I could sit up all day, and walk out
sometimes. I could join with Diana and Mary in all their occupations; converse
with them as much as they wished, and aid them when and where they would
allow me. There was a reviving pleasure in this intercourse, of a kind now tasted
by me for the first time-the pleasure arising from perfect congeniality of tastes,
sentiments, and principles.
I liked to read what they liked to read: what they enjoyed, delighted me; what
they approved, I reverenced. They loved their sequestered home. I, too, in the
grey, small, antique structure, with its low roof, its latticed casements, its
mouldering walls, its avenue of aged firs--all grown aslant under the stress of
mountain winds; its garden, dark with yew and holly--and where no flowers but of
the hardiest species would bloom--found a charm both potent and permanent.
They clung to the purple moors behind and around their dwelling--to the hollow
vale into which the pebbly bridle-path leading from their gate descended, and
which wound between fern- banks first, and then amongst a few of the wildest
little pasture- fields that ever bordered a wilderness of heath, or gave sustenance
to a flock of grey moorland sheep, with their little mossy-faced lambs:- they clung
to this scene, I say, with a perfect enthusiasm of attachment. I could comprehend
the feeling, and share both its strength and truth. I saw the fascination of the
locality. I felt the consecration of its loneliness: my eye feasted on the outline of
swell and sweep--on the wild colouring communicated to ridge and dell by moss,
by heath-bell, by flower-sprinkled turf, by brilliant bracken, and mellow granite
crag. These details were just to me what they were to them--so many pure and
sweet sources of pleasure. The strong blast and the soft breeze; the rough and
the halcyon day; the hours of sunrise and sunset; the moonlight and the clouded
night, developed for me, in these regions, the same attraction as for them--
wound round my faculties the same spell that entranced theirs.
Indoors we agreed equally well. They were both more accomplished and better
read than I was; but with eagerness I followed in the path of knowledge they had
trodden before me. I devoured the books they lent me: then it was full satisfaction
to discuss with them in the evening what I had perused during the day. Thought
fitted thought; opinion met opinion: we coincided, in short, perfectly.
If in our trio there was a superior and a leader, it was Diana. Physically, she far
excelled me: she was handsome; she was vigorous. In her animal spirits there
was an affluence of life and certainty of flow, such as excited my wonder, while it
baffled my comprehension. I could talk a while when the evening commenced,
but the first gush of vivacity and fluency gone, I was fain to sit on a stool at
Diana's feet, to rest my head on her knee, and listen alternately to her and Mary,
while they sounded thoroughly the topic on which I had but touched. Diana
offered to teach me German. I liked to learn of her: I saw the part of instructress
pleased and suited her; that of scholar pleased and suited me no less. Our
natures dovetailed: mutual affection--of the strongest kind--was the result. They