Asterisk denotes entries on real places.
*London. Political, cultural, and social center of England, to which Cecilia goes when she is about to reach her “majority” and must prepare for her “coming out” as a young lady of society. There she stays in a succession of her guardians’ home and finds each objectionable for a different reason.
*Portman Square. Location of the London home of Cecilia’s guardian Mr. Harrel and his wife. Their extravagant house, which is always undergoing some kind of physical improvements that involve contracts with architects and laborers, reflects their own dangerously profligate lifestyle, a way of living Cecilia has never experienced and finds distressing. For example, to prepare for a masquerade party, the Harrels redecorate their entire home.
Violent Bank. Summer villa of the Harrels–another example of how they live beyond their means, while compromising Cecilia’s inheritance. The importance that the Harrels place upon external appearances of wealth and position is emphasized by the ostentation of both their homes.
Mr. Briggs’s home. In contrast to the Harrels, the London home of the miserly Mr. Briggs, another of Cecilia’s guardians, is a painful reflection of its owner’s frugality. This home, which Cecilia finds completely comfortless, exemplifies the error of valuing money for itself alone, with no thought to the needs of others in society.
*St. James Square. Location of the London home of the third of Cecilia’s guardians, Mr. Delvile, and his wife. This home reflects the old name and social standing of the Delvile family and the overwhelming pride that the Delviles have in their family name and position.
Delvile Castle. Country estate of the Delviles. Owned by the Delvile family for generations, the castle is situated on a large tract of parkland. Though impressive from a distance, it shows wear and needs repair. While its past history is impressive, its former glory has dimmed. Nevertheless, Mr. Delvile views the estate as an important part of his son’s birthright and as an emblem of the social stature of his family, even though the family no longer has the resources needed to maintain the estate properly.