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    #1

    Mary Ann from "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow" by Jerome K. Jerome?

    Hello,

    I've come across a specific person's name while reading "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Man" by Jerome K. Jerome with seemingly no antecedant to make it clear who the person in question is. I'm assuming it was a famous person around that time, so I thought asking my seniors/more knowledgeable people would yield some results. Here's the extract where the name is mentioned:

    "They discover that they love Mary Ann at the precise moment when that faithful domestic is blackleading the stove, and nothing will relieve their feelings but to embrace her then and there."


    A little Google search says it's either Jack the Ripper's victim, which I'm more inclined towards accepting, or a fictional character by the full name of Mary Jane Summers who appeared in a sitcom.

    Any help is much appreciated.

  1. Piscean's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: Mary Ann from "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow" by Jerome K. Jerome?

    Mary Ann appears to be the servant who is blackleading the stove.

  2. Eckaslike's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: Mary Ann from "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow" by Jerome K. Jerome?

    My feeling is, that he is probably just using a typical name of any domestic servant that was popular at the time to illustrate his point.

    In this context it's a bit like using the phrase "any Tom, Dick or Harry" where each are not actual people, but the names are just used to make a point.

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    #4

    Re: Mary Ann from "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow" by Jerome K. Jerome?

    I agree with Piscean.

    Your clue is '...that faithful servant', Super Sonic.

  3. Eckaslike's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: Mary Ann from "The Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow" by Jerome K. Jerome?

    I have just found the exact context in the work. The author is talking about how toddlers get themselves into the most awkward situations, or do the most unhelpful things when we least want them to.

    In this instance the toddler wants to express its love for Mary Ann [a name used to indicate a typical maid of the era] by hugging her, at the exact, and most inconvenient, time at which she is doing the very dirty job of blackleading the stove.

    https://books.google.co.uk/books?id=...0books&f=false

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