At the end of Chapter 3 the reader learns a little about how Jane became an orphan. Not only does the reader hear the history, but Jane, herself, listens in to hear the first time her family story as told by the servants .
Jane’s father was a poor minister. Jane’s mother married beneath her station. Jane’s grandfather cut her off financially. Less than a year after their marriage Rev. Eyre caught typhus fever while ministering to the poor. Mrs. Eyre contracted the illness from her husband. They died within a month of each other, leaving Jane all alone.
How sad. Imagine Jane in her bed hearing about what happened to her parents.
Now this is where the servants pour salt in Jane’s wound
Bessie, when she heard this narrative, sighed and said, ‘Poor Miss Jane is to be pitied too, Abbot.’
‘Yes,’ responded Abbot; ‘if she were a nice, pretty child, one might compassionate her forlornness; but one really cannot care for such a little toad as that.’
Ow. Way to kick a little girl when she’s down.