Stronger unpacked felicity

This is the text of an email I received the other day. It appears to make no sense at all to me. Can you find anything in it that makes sense?

Had you him humoured jointure ask expenses learning
Cultivated who resolution connection motionless did occasional
Attachment companions man way excellence how her pianoforte
Garrets because elderly new manners however one village she

He ye body or made on pain part meet
Speaking ladyship yet scarcely and mistaken end exertion dwelling
Longer ladies valley get esteem use led six
Stronger unpacked felicity to of mistaken
Behind sooner dining so window excuse he summer

5 thoughts on “Stronger unpacked felicity

  1. There are a few possibilities to interpreting this passage:

    1. It may not mean anything, but was sent to torment you, as a joke.

    2. It may be a “code” which cannot be understood without a “code book” or some other key to its interpretation.

    3. Since the passage uses English words, but in an ungrammatical way, it may be a form of (bad) poetry. Suppose the grammar errors like “to of” are careless mistakes, or were put there intentionally to throw the readers off. If so, we could ignore them as “noise” words.

    Let’s explore this for a moment. There are some valid but telling word choices:

    “humoured” is the British spelling of “humored”.

    “ladies”, “ladyship” and “esteemed” seem to suggest women in “high society” or perhaps attached to the British royal court.

    In Wikipedia:

    – “Jointure is, in law, a provision for a wife after the death of her husband …. A legal jointure was first authorized by the Statute of Uses.” and “The Statute of Uses was an Act of the Parliament of England that restricted the application of uses in English property law.” The statute appears to have been enacted around 1536.

    – “pianoforte” was the original name for a “piano” before it got shortened. The word “pianoforte” was used in the 1700’s from its invention in Italy. These words suggest the setting of the ‘story’ is in England with references to Italy and, by inference, Western Europe.

    – “A garret is a habitable attic or small and often dismal or cramped living space at the top of a house or larger residential building.” That would make the garret a “dwelling” place that might require some “exertion” to live in and take care of.
    Here is a proposed meaning. I have no idea if this is right, but assuming the passage actually means anything, this is what the clues above seem to be suggesting. This is not a “translation” but more like a paraphrasing of the underlying concepts:

    A recently widowed woman in Victorian England was starting a new life after the death of her husband. The husband had made some provision in his will for the woman to have a place to live, but it was a meager one, in the “garret” of some building. She tried to “humour” her husband (while alive) to convince him to provide not just for her living expenses but for enough money so she could cultivate her further education, such as piano lessons, a hobby she wanted to excel at. Sometimes her efforts in that regard were ‘resolved’ (she made progress) and other times her progress came to a standstill (motionless). So, her musical education was a hit-or-miss proposition.

    The woman tried to fit in to the village where the garret was situated that she was living in, and perhaps her ‘manners’ (or lack thereof) in dealing with others in the village caused problems. Despite this, she was able to establish new friends who were drawn to her piano playing (attachment companions).

    When she met with these new friends, it sometimes resulted in pain, either in her body physically or emotionally, as she was still dealing with her grief as a new widow. Her difficulties in adjusting to her new life were made harder by the fact that while married, she may have had some royal title or connection that led to her being viewed with esteem, but after losing her husband and no longer being part of his (large?) estate and having to live in a small garret, it has been difficult. The esteem she had in the past might have including having oversight over six other court women.

    All these things are going through the woman’s mind as she unpacks her belonging when first moving into the garret. She hopes that she can be stronger than she first feels, and will eventually be happy again (will achieve felicity) but is concerned that this initial optimism might be mistaken, and settling in might be much hard than first thought.

    Still, there remains hope of better things. A man standing outside, in summer, sees the woman gazing out her window just before dinner time. Their eyes meet momentarily and then are averted as they shyly turn away (excusing themselves from this potentially romantic gaze). The woman goes to have dinner, thinking on how her summer might be hopeful after all.
    OR … it doesn’t mean anything at or, or it’s nothing like what I imagine above. Beats me.

  2. There is some kind of a pattern in the lengths of the words:



  3. I would have to defer to other commenters. It seems my fanciful theory doesn’t fit the facts as well as the “code” or “nonsense” theories do. I now agree that this passage is totally meaningless junk.

  4. Robert, I must agree your story contributes much more to the blog reader’s felicity than does the blunt truth.

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