The weird thing I’m getting when it comes to Charles Dickens’s fascination with and eventual horror at Maria Beadnell feels like a curious inversion of Dante Alighieri’s love for Beatrice Portinari. But in the sense that it’s easier to romanticise somebody who died young over somebody who lived long enough to let themselves go and become washed up.
Not necessarily always involving going fat but sometimes moving in a direction not at all intended or even glamourised. It’s painful to go through losing someone so soon, it’s another to have somebody live long enough however to continue developing beyond one’s expectations. Not necessarily in a bad way.
But it’s amusing to see these as opposites of each other.