Washington Square (1880)
Wealthy physician does all he can to dissuade dubious suitor from marrying his unattractive, dim-witted daughter. The physician's sister, polluted by years of reading romance plots, does all she can to thwart her brother's will. No marriage takes place and everyone ends up, years later, alone and wretched. Meanwhile, the narrator demonstrates repeatedly that he is much smarter than anyone else in the story.