The young orphan girl first seen tiring under the tyranny of her aunt, Mrs. Reed, that spends the whole novel finding her footing and herself, being incessantly exposed to people who wish to control and repress her though constantly proving intensely independent.
She is concrete throughout the story, staying true to what she believes in whilst always moving forward. Her love for Rochester proves similarly strong when she defies the opportunity of love elsewhere, with St. John, as she knows her love for Rochester is true.
‘I would always rather be happy than dignified’
‘I do not think, sir, you have any right to command me, merely because you are older than I, or because you have seen more of the world than I have; your claim to superiority depends on the use you have made of your time and experience’
‘They go to hell,” was my ready and orthodox answer’
‘If all the world hated you and believed you wicked, while your own conscience approved of you and absolved you from guilt, you would not be without friends’
‘Do you think, because I am poor, obscure, plain and little, I am soulless and heartless? You think wrong! – I have as much soul as you, – and full as much heart! And if God had gifted me with some beauty and much wealth, I should have made it as hard for you to leave me, as it is now for me to leave you!’
‘Prejudices, it is well known, are most difficult to eradicate from the heart whose soil has never been loosened or fertilised by education: they grow there, firm as weeds among stones’