Warning: If you have a visual impairment, use the manuscript transcript version including the Lucy Maud Montgomery’s foot notes and contextual annotation references.

Chapter 2


I ever saw that couldn’t be improved up upon by imagination. It just satisfied me here” — she put her hand on her breast — it made a queer, funny ache and yet it was a pleasant ache. Did you ever have an ache like that, Mr. Cuthbert?”

“Well now, I just can’t recollect that I ever had.”

“I have it lots of times — whenever I see anything royally beautiful. But they shouldn’t call that lovely place the Avenue. (begin subscript)^(end subscript)(begin superscript)There is no meaning in a name like that.(end superscript) They should call it — let me see — the White Way of Delight. Isn’t that a nice imaginative name? When I don’t like the name of a place or person I always imagine a new one and always think of them so. (begin superscript)U1(end superscript) Other people may call that place the Avenue, but


LMM Notes

LMM Note U1
There was a girl at the asylum whose name was Hepzibah Jenkins but I always imagined her as Rosalie De Vere[.]


"queer, funny ache": Anne's "ache" is reminiscent of "the flash," a feeling Montgomery described as the pulling back of the "thin veil" that hung between her and "a kingdom of ideal beauty." In her 1917 autobiography, The Alpine Path, she noted that "I could never draw it quite aside, but sometimes a wind fluttered it and I caught a glimpse of the enchanting realm beyond – only a glimpse – but those glimpses have always made life worth while." Later on, she gave "the flash" to another heroine, in Emily of New Moon and its sequels.

In June of 1929, while still a missionary in Japan, Loretta Leonard Shaw recounted in her diary memories of her childhood experiences in Saint John, New Brunswick, of beauty as joy and pain: “In the woods when I saw the vibrant pink of the first mayflowers peeping out near banks of snow, I would fall upon my knees to adore & while drinking in the beauty would feel like a violin swept with chords of passionate joy & pain.” When forced to leave Japan in 1939, Shaw gave her friend, Hanako Muraoka, her prized copy of Anne of Green Gables. Like Muraoka, Shaw shared Montgomery's (and her heroines') exquisite sensitivity to beauty.