Thursday, April 2, 2009


"The picturesque would be spoilt by admitting a fourth" (Chapt. 10, page 39)

As Elizabeth refuses to join Mr. Darcy and the Bingley sisters on a walk outside, she subtly alludes to William Gilpin ideology of picturesque. Gilpin was a clergymen who lived during Austin's time. He was a painter and wrote well regarded essays claiming that picturesque was an image that looked perfect on paper. Elizabeth sees the Bingley sisters and especially MR. Darcy as proud. Elizabeth adds this allusion to subtly pronounce that their party it only perfect on the surface.

~"William Gilpin (clergyman) -." Biography Research Guide. 03 Apr. 2009 .

Gretna Green

I am going to Gretna Green, and if you cannot guess with who, I shall think you a simpleton" (Chapt. 47, page 209).

Gretna Green was the first villiage settled in Scotland and lies at the mouth of the River Esk, in southern Scotland. It is well known to this day to be a place where couples run to in order to get married. Austin includes the names of real locations such as this, to add to the validity of the story.

Male Relationships

"Mr. Darcy handed the ladies into the carriage, and when it drove off, Elizabeth saw him walking slowly towards the house." (Chapt. 43, page 185).

Austin only wrote about what she knew from her life experiences. In her society it was not considered proper for women to be left alone in a room with a man. This is why there is no prespective from any of the male characters in Pride and Prejudice. This style is effective, because it creates a believable story, which is one of the reason's Austin's novels have endured.


"She is all affability and condescension" (Chapt. 28, page 115).

Mr. Collins is announcing that Elizabeth will be well received by Lady de Bourgh, despite her lower stature. At first is seems Mr. Collins is hinting that Lady de Bourgh is arrogant. The word affability is presently regarded as a patronizing word, where as during Austin's life, if one was affable they were kind to their inferiors. The word is a derivative of the Latin root 'adfari', which means to speak to. Some of Jane Austen's language is out dated, but her novels are as current as when they were first published.

~"A Latin-English Dictionary Wordlist." RCN New York City | Digital Cable TV, High-Speed Internet Service & Phone in New York City, including Queens, Brooklyn and Manhattan. 03 Apr. 2009 .

Twelfth Night

" 'I have been used to consider poetry as the food of love,' said Darcy." (Chapt. 9, Page 33)

Here Mr. Darcy is alluding to William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. This comedy tells the story Viola, a women who must dress like a man

Jane Austen makes a sly reference to false first impressions. In Twelfth Night, the female protagonist, Viola, must dress as a man while serving her master Duke Orsino. She falls inlove with the Duke, but the feeling is not reciprcated due to her manly disguise. At first Jane accuses Mr. Darcy's of having a cold countenance and proud nature, when in reality he is kind and modest. Duke Orsino's quick judgement is parallel to Jane's.

~"Twelfth Night Plot Synopsis." Shakespeare Online. 02 Apr. 2009 .

The Country

" 'The country,' said Darcy, 'can in general supply but a few subjects for such a study. In a country neighborhood you move in a very confined and unvarying society.' " (Chapt 9, page 32).

The country symbolizes the humbling of class. The country is the location where the nontraditional couples, Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy and Jane and Mr. Bingley met. It was uncommon during Austin's time for a couple to derive from such a gap in classes. When Mr. Bingley was convinced that Jane was not a well match for himself he moved away from his country home in Longbourn, to London, where Jane soon followed. The two never met in the city which symbolize that society is harshly applied to that of the city.


"to overcome a sentiment so natural as abhorrence against relationship with Wickmen. Brother-in-law of Wickmen! Every kind of pride must revolt from the connection." (Chapt. 52, Page 235)

Austin's uses irony not only in small ways such as speech, but in her themes as well. The theme of pride in Pride and Prejudice is shown in an ironic light. Elizabeth prejudges Mr. Darcy to be proud, but later learns that he is far from such. Ironically the pride of Elizabeth's family is saved when Mr. Darcy seeks out Lydia and Mr. Wickmen. He humbles himself beyond this when he continues to love the Daughter-in-Law of Mr. Wickmen.