Who is the Father of Clara’s Baby in Sanditon? Theories

Adapted for the small screen by Andrew Davies, ‘Sanditon‘ is a historical drama TV series based on Jane Austen’s eponymous unfinished manuscript. It follows Charlotte Heywood, a spirited young lady who arrives at the seaside resort of Sanditon to gain new experiences. There, she mingles with the unusual residents and quickly gets entangled in the secrets they keep. She befriends Clara, an orphan who lives with her wealthy relative Lady Denham.

The old woman’s scheming nephew Edward and Clara conspire together to usurp Lady Denham’s wealth as season 1 ends. Luckily, she finds out about their misdeeds and banishes them. But Edward soon returns to town in season 2 claiming to be repentant. On the other hand, Clara also arrives and makes a shocking announcement, thus changing the course of events in the sleepy town. Intrigued to know more about Clara’s revelation? Let’s dive in and find out. SPOILERS AHEAD.

Who is the Father of Clara’s Baby?

Clara Brereton is introduced as a rather sweet and helpless woman, with a history of abuse and poverty. Lady Denham is her affluent relative who takes her in and Clara becomes a caretaker for her. She is one of the potential beneficiaries of Lady Denham’s hefty inheritance, which does not sit well with the latter’s nephew Edward and his step-sister Esther. Thus, they plan to remove Clara from the equation.

Initially, Clara feigns innocence and claims that Edward makes evil advances on her, prompting Charlotte to warn her to steer clear of his womanizing ways. Yet, she uses her sexuality to manipulate Edward and gain control over his senses. Clara pretends to be a naïve woman on the outside but is shrewd in her survival tactics and wants to reach the top by hook or by crook.

To convince Edward to help her acquire Lady Denham’s wealth, Clara lures him with the promise of marriage. As the old woman falls severely ill and is expected to die anytime, Clara and Edward begin looking for her hidden will. Esther, who was priorly a pawn in Edward’s games, helplessly looks on as Clara claims her place in the Denham household. The latter manages to locate the will but discovers that neither she nor Edward have any benefits to gain.

Hence, Clara and Edward burn the will secretly and she seduces him to secure a major portion of the estate. Luckily, Lady Denham evades death and recovers, only to find out what her young successors have been planning behind her. Livid at their betrayal, she cuts off all ties with them and stops providing them monetary assistance. As a result, Edward and Clara decide to leave town and as she departs to London, she mocks him for his foolishness.

Later, Edward joins the army and comes back to Sanditon with his battalion. He claims to be a changed man in front of his aunt and Esther and repeatedly tries to win their forgiveness and trust. Though Lady Denham begins to soften a little at her nephew’s apologies, Esther refuses to believe him after all the agony he has caused her. Moreover, he seems to be in a financial mess, as he hasn’t been able to pay his commission in the army yet.

While Esther suspects Edward’s true motives behind reappearing in their lives, a bruised and battered Clara arrives at their doorstep and begs Lady Denham to give her shelter. The latter refuses to budge and shows no mercy, but to everyone’s dismay, Clara discloses that she is pregnant with Edward’s child and that he has wronged her.

Though it is yet to be seen how true Clara’s claim is about the baby being Edward’s, her condition shall surely have serious consequences in the lives of the Denham family as well as the other inhabitants of Sanditon. Whether she and Edward have deliberately plotted to deceive Lady Denham again or their repentance is true, is another thing time shall reveal.

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