flatter parental egotism


Senior Member
The context comes from Jane Eyre Chapter 12

She had no great talents, no marked traits of character, no peculiar development of feeling or taste which raised her one inch above the ordinary level of childhood; but neither had she any deficiency or vice which sunk her below it. She made reasonable progress, entertained for me a vivacious, though perhaps not very profound, affection; and by her simplicity, gay prattle, and efforts to please, inspired me, in return, with a degree of attachment sufficient to make us both content in each other’s society.

This, par parenthèse, will be thought cool language by persons who entertain solemn doctrines about the angelic nature of children, and the duty of those charged with their education to conceive for them an idolatrous devotion: but I am not writing to flatter parental egotism, to echo cant, or prop up humbug; I am merely telling the truth.

Hi everyone! I don't understand "to flatter parental egotism" here. Does it mean "to gratify parents' desire to boast themselves excessively", e.g. by saying "you are very good at cultivating your child" ?
  • owlman5

    Senior Member
    Hi, Irelia.

    Your translation is pretty good. I think this version is a little closer: to gratify parents' desire to think highly of themselves.
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