I’ve been thinking a lot about Jane Austen’s bad boys lately–Wickham, Willoughby, Churchill, et al.–and, as I’ve studied each one, I’m more impressed than ever with Austen’s ability to develop her characters. Each of these male characters brought out the strengths and weaknesses of the main characters in an ingenious manner. The books would not have been the same without them.
Today, I thought I’d have a little fun and make a short personality quiz to see which type of bad boy would be the greatest threat to each of you.
Please pick one or two of these descriptions that fit you best:
A. I am looking for a man to sweep me off my feet, someone who’s completely romantic.
B. I don’t really need a man to rescue or complete me. I fight my own battles, and I’m willing to go to bat for other people as well.
C. I have strong moral values, and I enjoy helping others reach their potential.
D. I enjoy my life, but I confess that I’m a little bored. A new relationship could be a fun diversion.
E. I haven’t dated much, but I sure would like to start.
F. I’m still trying to get over my last relationship–someone respectable and classy sounds good.
Now, please scroll down to see your results:
If you picked A:.( I am looking for a man to sweep me off my feet, someone who’s completely romantic), you could be vulnerable to a Willoughby-type of bad boy. This guy will sweep you off your feet, but you may not be the first or the last in his long line of conquests. Enjoy the poetry and bouquets of flowers, but also watch for a steady character and responsible spending.
If you picked B. (I don’t really need a man to rescue or complete me. I fight my own battles, and I’m willing to go to bat for other people as well.), you should watch out for your own personal version of Jack Wickham. This type of man seems to be a great match for you–since you both seem strong and independent–but once you get to know him, you may fall into the trap of rescuing and defending him. That’s all well and good, as long as he’s telling the truth. If he’s a liar like Jack, it may bring trouble on your whole family.
If you picked C (I have strong moral values, and I enjoy helping others reach their potential.), be careful not to fall victim to a Henry Crawford-type, also known as your own personal service project. This type of man looks to you for guidance and advice, and you can’t help feeling sorry for him. You tell yourself that he has so much potential, and your family adores him, but you wonder if he’ll ever really get his act together.
If you picked D, (I enjoy my life, but I confess that I’m a little bored. A new relationship could be a fun diversion.), watch out for guys like Frank Churchill. They can sense that you’re just into this relationship for a good time, and they’re hoping you’re as uninterested in commitment as they are. Always make your intentions clear to avoid getting hurt.
And now for E. (I haven’t dated much, but I sure would like to start.) If you picked E, please watch out for jerks like John Thorpe. It’s better not to date at all than to be manipulated and coerced. Even if he’s related to your friend or a good friend of someone you know, it’s best to avoid this type of guy at all costs. (I think the John Thorpe type is usually a teenager, but some adult men seem to hide their secret John Thorpe qualities until after they are in committed relationships.)
Last but not least, if you picked F. (I’m still trying to get over my last relationship–someone respectable and classy sounds good), watch out for guys like William Elliot in Persuasion. On the outside, they seem great, but take your time to get to know him well. Men aren’t always as good as they seem.
It’s not my intention here to discourage anyone from dating. After all, if we’ve learned anything from Jane Austen, it’s that sometimes you have to meet a few Wickhams and Churchills before you find your true love. Just beware. Also, please let me know in the comments if you’ve encountered any of these types of men in real life.