Importance Of Beauplaisir In Eliza Haywood's Fantomina

1545 Words7 Pages
Eliza Haywood’s Fantomina highlights and encourages the double standard of men sleeping before marriage and women waiting for marriage. Beauplaisir is characterized as the typical aristocratic man of the eighteenth century. He has some goodness as well as being restless in his relationships. This is significant because of the double standard for women in the eighteen century. Men could have sexual relations with as many women as they wanted but women were only considered acceptable if they waited until their wedding night to sexual relations with a man. Beauplaisir’s characterization is important because at the time the text was written it was important to not have mixed characters. Beauplasir classified as good but a womanizer shows that it is acceptable while it is not acceptable for women to sleep with a man out…show more content…
Beauplaisir has been written as the typical aristocrat. Many have noted the he is a stock character: “He is a stock character whose desires and pleasures are already known to the reader. He has no motivations beyond sexual conquests, and his manipulations of women are obvious and expected” (Comitini 75). It is true that Beauplaisir is a stock character. It is unsurprising that every disguise Fantomina displays for him is made into a new sexual conquest for Beauplaisir. One of the reasons one may chose to have a stock character is to show an ideal, which is the case in Haywood’s text. As an aristocratic Beauplaisir is able to sleep with as many women as he choses while paying for their service. The way Beauplaisir has relations with all of Fantomina’s disguises is done in a way that would be considered correct in eighteenth century society. He is charming and willing to pay any fee for sleeping with these women. Therefore, Beauplaisir is characterized as the typical good aristocratic man who is able to have sexual relations as long as it is done in the proper
Open Document