Persuasions #12, 1990                                                                                                                                            Page 70


Sir Lewis de Bourgh




Sir Lewis de Bourgh was the late husband of Lady Catherine in Pride and Prejudice.  No other character in Jane Austen’s fiction bears the Christian name “Lewis,” and hitherto no provenance has been suggested for it.  However, it would appear likely that Jane Austen borrowed the name from Mary de Clifford (1792), a novel by Sir Samuel Egerton Brydges, in which the founder of the heroine’s family is called Sir Lewis de Clifford. F.W. Bradbrook has demonstrated that Mary de Clifford was a source for Pride and Prejudice,1 but he overlooked this link.


1  See Jane Austen and her Predecessors (Cambridge, 1966), 124-36.

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