Jane would like to know about her employer Mr. Rochester. Since he is not currently living at the manor, Jane asks the housekeeper Mrs. Fairfax for her impressions of the man.
“he has a gentleman’s tastes and habits, and he expects to have things managed in conformity to them.
“…I believe he is considered a just and liberal landlord by his tenants: but he has never lived much amongst them”
“Oh, his character is unimpeachable, I suppose. He is rather peculiar, perhaps: he has travelled a great deal, and seen a great deal of the world, I should think. I dar say he is clever: but I never had much conversation with him.”
“…you cannot be always sure whether he is in jest or earnest, whether he is please or the contrary: you don’t thoroughly understand him, in short–at least, I don’t: but that is of no consequence, he is a very good master.”
The descriptions do not please Jane. It seems her questions did more to confuse the housekeeper than to encourage a detailed character sketch. Jane will have to wait until the lord of the manor arrives “to gain a more definite notion of his identity.”
quotes from chapter 11