At first when I read the scene where Jane is describing her “nightmare” about a vampire to Rochester, I didn’t think much of it. But now that we know that Rochester’s wife, Bertha Mason, was the woman who entered Jane’s room, I began to think about it differently.
“Sir, it removed my veil from its gaunt head, rent it in two parts, and flinging both on the floor, trampled on them (ch 25).”
Here, we get a description of Bertha tearing Jane’s wedding veil. It’s made clear that she doesn’t do any harm to Jane herself which makes me think that Bertha destroyed the veil as a way of warning Jane about Rochester’s abusive nature.
We seem to see that Rochester likes to hold some modicum of power of his partners. With Bertha it’s made more clear because she’s literally imprisoned in the attic. With Jane, Rochester is her employer and of a higher class than her. He essentially holds power over Jane’s finances.
It’s overall very interesting to see how Rochester compares Bertha and Jane. He attributed Bertha with ‘devilish’ features and Jane with ‘angelic’ features. This is made clear in chapter 26:
“I have for the first time found what I can truly love—I have found you. You are my sympathy—my better self—my good angel. I am bound to you with a strong attachment. I think you good, gifted, lovely: a fervent, a solemn passion is conceived in my heart; it leans to you, draws you to my centre and spring of life, wraps my existence about you, and, kindling in pure, powerful flame, fuses you and me in one. It was because I felt and knew this, that I resolved to marry you. To tell me that I had already a wife is empty mockery: you know now that I had but a hideous demon (ch 26).”
I hope that Jane fully heeds Bertha’s warning about Mr Rochester and the sort of man is he.