Lydias Elopement and Its Functions in Jane Austens Pride and Prejudice

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Bennet openly favors Jane and Elizabeth due to their much steadier and genteel temperaments, he actively distances himself from his wife and younger daughters activities whenever possible, even at social gatherings like assemblies, where he should be attending in order to supervise them all. From the beginning of the novel, it is very apparent that Elizabeth is her father's favourite daughter. The two have a close "sarcastic" bond, which is apparent to everyone in the family.

Bennet, in one of her many quasi-hysterical moments, turns on her husband and exclaims: "I desire you will do no such thing. Lizzy is not a bit better than the others; and I am sure she is not half so handsome as Jane, nor half so good humoured as Lydia. But you are always giving her the preference". Despite the fact that his daughter must marry in order to be able to continue living the life of a gentlewoman, Mr. Bennet appears, for the most part, unconcerned. After Elizabeth rejects Mr. Collins' marriage proposal, Mrs. Bennet is beside herself and proclaims that she shall "never see [Elizabeth] again".

Collins, who would have been able to provide for her, sarcastically declares "An unhappy alternative is before you, Elizabeth. From this day you must be a stranger to one of your parents. Collins, and I will never see you again if you do. Though his indolent parenting style and manners are suggested to be questionable at several times in the novel, he loves his daughters Elizabeth in particular , and ultimately, Mr Bennet blames himself for having been insufficiently disciplining with them, which ultimately had enabled Lydia to run away with Mr.

Wickham, and nor does he resent Elizabeth for her having advised him against letting Lydia go to Brighton with Colonel Forster's regiment as the newly married Mrs. Forster's " particular friend " who was barely older than Lydia in the first place. Though Mr. Bennet appears to be an agreeable character, for he does not become involved with Mrs. Bennet's plans, he does have shortcomings which have a real possibility of affecting his wife and daughters' futures.

Early in his marriage, his view was that " economy was Bennet has done nothing try and put sums of money away to try and save up help his family in the event of his death, he has however made the effort to keep them out of debts " and her husband's love of independence had alone prevented their exceeding their income ". This lack of economic foresight did not bother Mr. Bennet, because he assumed his wife would eventually bear him a son, who would join him to cut off the entail and secure the financial future of the rest of his family.


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If the narrator remains silent on the ancestors of Mr Bennet , we know a little more about the family of his wife: Mrs. Bennet , born Gardiner and married for twenty-three years at the start of the novel , is the daughter of an attorney of Meryton in Hertfordshire. She has a brother and a sister, both married.

Though equally vulgar, ignorant, thoughtless, tasteless and gossipy, the marriages of the two sisters have resulted in them revolving in different circles one married a member of the local gentry, the other is wed to one of her late father's law clerks doing so was probably what made him the successor to his boss' small town law firm , while their naturally genteel brother has gone on to acquire an education and a higher social status in general trade in a respectable line of trade in London.

She is the daughter of Mr. Gardiner Sr. Phillips and Mr. Edward Gardiner, who is some years younger them both his sisters, and is both better natured and better educated than them " Mr. Gardiner was a sensible, gentlemanlike man, greatly superior to his sister, as well by nature as education ".

Like her favourite daughter, Lydia, Mrs.

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Money in Pride and Prejudice

Bennet is shameless, frivolous, and very ' silly ' " [Mrs. Bennet's] mind was less difficult to develop. She was a woman of mean understanding , little information , and uncertain temper. When she was discontented, she fancied herself nervous. The business of her life was to get her daughters married; its solace was visiting and ' news ' Bennet] captivated by youth and beauty, and that appearance of good humour, which youth and beauty generally give, had married a woman, whose weak understanding, and illiberal mind, had, very early in the marriage, put an end to any real affection for her ".

She is, notably, a hypochondriac , who imagines herself susceptible to attacks of 'tremors and palpitations' "[her] poor nerves" ; these attacks of 'nerves' happen whenever she is defensive or displeased because things are not going her way. She is also prone to flights of fancy, of pique, and of melodrama , believing herself to regularly ill-used, talking loudly of it, as well as having the bad habits of counting her chickens before they hatch prophesying about her daughter, Jane's great marriage match, only for Mr.

Lydia's Elopement and Its Functions in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice

Bingley to fail to return from London when he said he would, and never took into account that she had been wrong, instead implying that the deficiency was either with Jane for failing to 'catch' him or Bingley for not being 'caught' ; and talking out of both sides of her mouth. She is very much a child still, emotionally stunted and immature, but in an adult's body; likewise with her most favoured daughter, Lydia, with whom she shares a rapport, indulging all of her 'silly', forward and selfish behaviour, and has for years filled Lydia's head with tales of lace, bonnets, high fashions, men in regimentals " [Lydia] is very young; she has never been taught to think on serious subjects; and for the last half-year, nay, for a twelvemonth, she has been given up to nothing but amusement and vanity.

She has been allowed to dispose of her time in the most idle and frivolous manner, and to adopt any opinions that came in her way. Since the shire were first quartered in Meryton, nothing but love, flirtation, and officers have been in her head. She has been doing every thing in her power, by thinking and talking on the subject, to give greater — what shall I call it? Following her marriage, her ascension to the ranks of the gentry has given her an inflated sense of entitlement. Bennet is also just like her youngest daughter , in that, as a compulsive gossip and blabbermouth, she is completely incapable of keeping secrets and respecting confidences, even at the expense of her family when she made no effort to keep the news of Lydia's disgrace quiet, allowing it to get out around Meryton.

In the first chapter, the narrator warns that Mrs. Bennet is " a woman of mean understanding, little information and uncertain temper ". Seduced by her " youth and beauty, and that appearance of good-humour which youth and beauty generally give ", Mr. Bennet married her quickly, discovering too late that she was stupid, narrow-minded and shallow. Her father had been an attorney in Meryton, and had left her four thousand pounds ". Having married above her station, raising her social class, it has given her an unrealistic estimation of her own worth.

She repeatedly makes a spectacle of herself, incapable of realizing that her behaviour is more likely to be off-putting to any rich, eligible young man who would take notice of her daughters. Her vulgar public manners, her crude, artless and transparent efforts at social climbing and matchmaking , and her all-around 'silliness' are a source of constant embarrassment to both Jane and Elizabeth. But, if one good thing has come from her lacking of good social graces , it is that they have helped to keep her eldest two daughters humble, as opposed to her younger three, who like their mother lack any self-awareness as to their own character flaws.

Her main ambition in life is to marry her daughters off to wealthy men, who she can boast and brag about them to her friends and neighbours; Mrs. Phillips her sister , Lady Lucas wife of Sir. William Lucas, of Lucas Lodge , Mrs. Long, and Mrs. Goulding of Haye-Park , especially to Lady Lucas, with who she seems to be contest of one-upmanship with.

Whether or not any such matches will give her daughters happiness is of little concern to her. Her pastimes are shopping, 'socializing', and gossiping and boasting. Her favourite daughter is her youngest, Lydia, who takes very much after her younger self. Next she values her eldest, Jane, though only for Jane's great physical beauty , and never considers Jane's feelings, virtue , or reputation.

Her least favourite daughter is Elizabeth closely followed by Mary who she does not understand or like at all; when Mr. Collins was directing his 'enraptured heart' at Elizabeth, Mrs. Bennet thought them both together a perfect match as she doesn't like either of them " Mrs.

Bennet was perfectly satisfied; and quitted the house under the delightful persuasion that, allowing for the necessary preparations of settlements, new carriages, and wedding clothes, she should undoubtedly see [Jane] settled at Netherfield in the course of three or four months.

Pride and Prejudice: The Real Wickham

Of having [Elizabeth] married to Mr. Collins, she thought with equal certainty, and with considerable, though not equal, pleasure.


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Elizabeth was the least dear to her of all her children; and though the man and the match were quite 'good enough' for her , the worth of each was eclipsed by Mr. Bingley and Netherfield ". Between the Gardiner siblings, Mrs. But this domain is under the regime of substitution for a male heir fee tail male , a rule of succession which she never understood why her husband could do nothing to change despite it having been explained to her numerous times she assumes that he simply won't change it on purpose to stress her " poor nerves " , [19] since it clouded his future and that of his daughters, given that she and her husband were unable to have a boy.

They had hoped for years, even after the birth of Lydia, the son who would have allowed to put an end to the entail , but they only had girls, five daughters over the course of seven years. And now that she is middle-aged, having lost nigh-all hope of giving birth to a son, Mrs Bennet is obsessed with the idea of losing her material security, and to be deprived of the social situation to which she is long accustomed to and, to her mind, entirely deserving of ; the possibility of becoming a widow and being expelled from the domain by the heir terrorizes her.

On the other hand, however, Mrs. Bennet is not so merciful, herself; when after Mr. Collins' and Miss Charlotte Lucas' engagement is announced, Mrs. Bennet becomes very paranoid about their plans, any time she saw them talking together up until their wedding, she convinced that they were both just counting down the hours until the time that they can assume possession of Longbourn and 'throw her out to live in the hedgerows' " Mrs.

Bennet was really in a most pitiable state. The very mention of anything concerning the match threw her into an agony of ill humour, and wherever she went she was sure of hearing it talked of. The sight of Miss Lucas was odious to her. As her successor in that house, she regarded her with jealous abhorrence. Whenever Charlotte came to see them she concluded her to be anticipating the hour of possession; and whenever she spoke in a low voice to Mr. Collins, was convinced that they were talking of the Longbourn estate, and resolving to turn herself and her daughters out of the house as soon as Mr.

Bennet were dead " , all before Mr. Bennet is 'cold in his grave' despite the fact that Mr. Bennet is healthy ; completely ignoring the fact that this is exactly what she herself and Lady Lucas would be doing if she was in Charlotte Lucas' situation. She quickly start to view Charlotte as a conniving intruder as Lady Lucas takes every chance to rub in her triumph " it is very hard to think that Charlotte Lucas should ever be mistress of this house, that I should be forced to make way for her, and live to see her take my place in it!

And even when she does start to make a semblance of peace with the 'inevitable', she would mutter, under her breath, "repeatedly to say in an ill-natured tone that she 'wished they might be happy', " when really, she wishes them both ill-will. Thereby her fixed idea, "the business of her life" ever since Jane, the eldest, has reached 16 years old, is the urgent need to find a husband financially secure for her daughters [20] to their safeguard and her own. Thus, she shows immediate interest in the arrival of an eligible bachelor in the region. By marrying, she has changed her own social status, but she continues to behave like an ignorant, one-dimensional , petite bourgeoise from Meryton.

Collins or Lady Catherine, and her own daughter Lydia, frozen and unable to evolve: [23] in twenty-three years of marriage she has not changed. Soon as she is upset, incapable of analysis, reflection or questioning, she gets defensive and has an anxiety attack "She fancied herself nervous". Narrow-minded and ignorant, she has only the vaguest idea of how to behave in good society, the upper class to which Darcy belongs, and where she would like to see Jane entering.

Her lack of intelligence and narrowness of mind "weak understanding and illiberal mind" quickly resulted in the neglect of her husband, [17] who for a long time feels nothing more for her than a mocking indifference tinged with contempt; [16] if he does still have feelings for her, they are of a disappointed variety of love, although it is a fact that he remained faithful to her " [Mr.

Bennet] captivated by youth and beauty, and that appearance of good humour, which youth and beauty generally give, had married a woman whose weak understanding and illiberal mind, had very early in the marriage put an end to any real affection for her. Bennet was not of a disposition to seek comfort for the disappointment which his own imprudence had brought on , in any of those pleasures which too often console the unfortunate of their folly or vice.

He was fond of the country and of books; and from these tastes had arisen his principal enjoyments ". Her notion of stylish behavior is summarized in what she told Sir William: "He has always something to say to everybody. She behaves with embarrassing vulgarity and lack of tact, especially at Netherfield, where her pretentiousness, foolishness and "total lack of correction" are particularly evident.

She is completely devoid of empathy , save for herself and Lydia , and, having the mentality of a peahen , she is only sensitive to the outward appearances Jane's superior physical beauty, handsome men in militia uniforms, Mrs. Hurst's expensive laces. Thus, Mr. Bennet's refusal to get new clothes for her beloved Lydia in her wedding day shocked her more than the fifteen days lived in concubinage with Wickham " She was more alive to the disgrace which the want of new clothes must reflect on her daughter's nuptials, than to any sense of shame at her eloping and living with Wickham a fortnight before they took place ".

This convoluted worldview, inflated sense of self-love, and ill-economic tendencies are seen more even more ludicrous upon Lydia's marriage " Mr. Bennet and his daughters saw all the advantages of Wickham's removal from the shire as clearly as Mr. Gardiner could do. But Mrs. Bennet was not so well pleased with it. Lydia's being settled in the North, just when [Mrs.

Bennet] had expected most pleasure and pride in [Lydia's] company — for [Mrs. Bennet] had by no means given up her plan of their residing in Hertfordshire — was a severe disappointment; and besides, it was such a pity that Lydia should be taken from a regiment where she was acquainted with everybody, and had so many favourites. Forster ", said [Mrs. Bennet], " it will be quite shocking to send her away! And there are several of the young men, too, that she likes very much " , completely glossing over Lydia's ruination and rescue, as if events had actually been different then they actually had.

Jane Austen has particularly charged the character. As Virginia Woolf wrote, "no excuse is found for [her fools] and no mercy shown them [ Bennet is distinguished primarily by her propensity to logorrhea , a defect that Thomas Gisborne considers specifically feminine. Even the ever-patient Jane finds her mother's complaints hard to bear, when Mrs. Bennet manifests "a longer irritation than usual" about the absence of Mr. Bingley, confessing to Elizabeth how much the lack of self-control of her mother revives her suffering " Oh that my dear mother had more command over herself!

Another emphasized and systematically ridiculed aspect is her " nervous disease " or rather her tendency to use her alleged weakness nervous to get noticed and attract compassion to herself, or else demanding that they dance attendance on her leave , but ultimately failing to make herself loved. Some critics, however, point out that it would be unfair to see only her faults. Her obsession is justified by the family's situation: the cynicism of Mr Bennet will not prevent Mr Collins from inheriting Longbourn.

She, at least, unlike her husband, thinks about the future of her daughters in seeking to place them socially, [35] although it's just as likely that she anticipates being able to scrounge off them shamelessly in the event of being left a widow. In an environment where there are numerous young ladies to be married all neighbors: the Longs, the Lucases, have daughters or nieces to marry and few interesting parties, she is much more attentive to the competition than him [36] and she has, somehow, saturated the market.

She does not neglect her daughters, while he merely treats them all as "stupid and ignorant as all the girls", and is locked selfishly in his library. Disappointed by her " mediocre intelligence ", he enjoys disconcerting her with his " sarcastic humor ", but he increases the anxiety of her " unequal character " by refusing to accept legitimate requests: why tell her that he will not visit Bingley on his arrival in the country, when, in fact, he has the firm intention of doing so?

And when she revolts against the injustice of the entail , why he replied: " we must hope that I will survive you?

The Importance of Letters

She is well aware that he takes pleasure in contradicting her feels " no compassion for [her] poor nerves " , never realizing that she's the one who sets herself for it every time and that's pointing out the flaws in her words. Not smart enough to understand his mindset and unsatisfied herself, she " fancied herself nervous ", the narrator says. She really suffers from the mocking indifference, insensitivity and lack of empathy from her husband and feels misunderstood; [37] her appreciation for visits and gossip is a consolation, a solace for an unhappily married woman.

But, because Mrs. Bennet is stupid, the narrator is merciless and seems to take the same perverse pleasure as Mr. Bennet in mocking her and noting all her ridiculous interventions. When Jane asks her to feel a bit of gratitude to his brother, who had paid a lot for Lydia's wedding, she replied that 'had he not had children, that she and her daughters will inherit all his property', and he has never been 'really generous so far' " If he had not had a family of his own, I and my children must have had all his money, you know; and it is the first time we have ever had anything from him, except a few presents ".

If that had been nearer, she would not have gone so soon " , [39] and if she was able to happily " for all her maternal feelings [get] rid of her most deserving daughters ", the marriage of Jane will only satisfy her " delighted pride " during the year that the Bingley spent at Netherfield.

Bennet is not treated any better by Jane Austen than Lady Catherine, who shows the same lack of taste, and as many selfish pretensions and such ridiculous interferences; her rudeness of rich and aristocrat pride shames her nephew, just like the vulgarity of her mother irritates Elizabeth. Mrs Bennet has not really raised these girls, that she would like so much to see married, to make them good housekeepers.

It was Thomas Gisborne who theorized in An Enquiry Into the Duties of Men , [note 2] published in , and in An Enquiry into the Duties of the Female Sex , published in , the idea of areas reserved for men and women. According to him, women are by nature destined to the domestic sphere , defined as the particular area where "their excellence deploys". Now, Mrs. Bennet openly mocks Charlotte Lucas when she is forced to go into the kitchen in order to supervise the tarts making, proudly saying that her "daughters are brought up differently"; also, she reacts with force when Mr Collins, on the day of his arrival, assumed that his cousins took part in the preparation of dinner.

Bennet also adds that they lived quite well, since Mr. Bennet's life made for her marriage, Mr. Like her immediately younger sister, Elizabeth, Jane is favoured by her father, due to her steady, genteel disposition. Twenty-two years old when the novel begins twenty-three at the end , she is considered the most beautiful young lady in the neighbourhood. Jane's character is contrasted with Elizabeth's as sweeter, shyer, and equally sensible, but not as clever but she is aware of this fact ; her most notable trait is a desire to see only the good in others.

As Anna Quindlen wrote, Jane is "sugar to Elizabeth's lemonade". Jane along with her sister, Elizabeth seems to have taken after her father's side of the family, in actual fact, having been portrayed as a sweet, steady, genteel girl unlike her mother. She is favoured by her mother next after her youngest sister, Lydia solely because of her external beauty. If Jane has taken anything after her mother, it is a certain inflexibility of thought; but while her mother's inflexibility of thought leans in a wholly selfish direction, Jane's is in a self less one; Jane is very unwilling to think ill of others unless sufficient evidence presents itself , whereas her mother will think ill of anyone on little evidence.


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  5. She falls in love with the affable and amiable Mr. Bingley " He is just what a young man ought to be", said [Jane], "sensible, good humoured, lively; and I never saw such happy manners! Their love is initially thwarted by Mr. Darcy and Caroline Bingley, who are concerned by Jane's low connections and have other plans for Bingley, respectively, involving Miss Darcy.

    Darcy, aided by Elizabeth, eventually sees the error in his ways and is instrumental in bringing Jane and Bingley back together. As described in volume 3, chapter 19 the epilogue that, after their marriage, the happy couple only manage to tough it out at Netherfield for a year before life in Meryton being imposed upon by Mrs. Bennet and Mrs. Phillips and their ill-bred, silly, thoughtless behavior proved to be too much for their good tempers, leading them to give up the lease on the estate and establish themselves elsewhere " Mr.

    Introduction

    Bingley and Jane remained at Netherfield only a twelve-month. So near a vicinity to her mother and Meryton relations was not desirable even to his easy temper, or her affectionate heart. The darling wish of his sisters was then gratified; he bought an estate in a neighbouring country to Derbyshire , and Jane and Elizabeth, in addition to every source of happiness, were within thirty-miles of each other. The second of the Bennet daughters, she is twenty years old and is intelligent, lively, playful, attractive, and witty—but with a tendency to judge on first impression the "prejudice" of the title and perhaps to be a little selective of the evidence on which she bases her judgments.

    As the plot begins, her closest relationships are with her father as his favourite daughter , her sister Jane, her Aunt Gardiner, and her best friend Charlotte Lucas. She is also the least favourite of her mother, Mrs. Bennet because of her resistance to her mother's plans a 'rank' which she is tied closely with her plain sister, Mary, who Mrs.

    Bennet also looks down upon. As the story progresses, so does her relationship with Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy, Esquire. The course of Elizabeth and Darcy's relationship is ultimately decided when Darcy overcomes his pride, and Elizabeth overcomes her prejudice, leading them both to surrender to their love for each other. Mary Bennet is the middle, and only plain and solemn Bennet sister. Like both her two younger sisters, Kitty and Lydia, she is seen as being 'silly' by Mr.

    Bennet, and as not even pretty like her sisters and for not being 'good-humoured' like Lydia by Mrs. Mary is not very intelligent, but thinks of herself as being wise. Socially inept, Mary is more in the habit of talking at someone, moralizing , rather than to them; rather than join in some of the family activities, Mary mostly reads, plays music and sings, although she is often impatient to display her 'accomplishments' and is rather vain and pedantic about them; vanity disguised as disciplines " Mary had neither genius nor taste; and though vanity had given her application, it had given her likewise a pedantic air and conceited manner, which would have injured a higher degree of excellence than she had reached ".

    Mary is very un-self-aware of all of this, fancying herself to be intelligent, wise and very accomplished; and this is likely to be the reason why her father considers her to be 'silly' like her mother and younger sisters, though the much more prim and sensible of them by far. Mary also tries to be pious , high-minded and morally superior and beyond approach, only instead to come across as being both very sanctimonious , self-righteous, and haughty , and very, very dull; she seems to have assumed that, by always assuming the moral high ground which she seems to brag about '[following] them in pride and conceit', not unlike Mr.

    Darcy : " Far be it from me, my dear sister, to depreciate such pleasures. They would doubtless be congenial with the generality of female minds. But I confess they would have no charms for me — I should infinitely prefer a book " , she will be setting herself above her sisters, when she is always being compared to them by her mother — something which only seems to stop after they had all been married off, as mentioned in the epilogue.

    While Mary is not what one would call introspective, she is not what one would call extrospective, either ; she is socially awkward, lacking any real social graces or observations about herself or others. Mary is like a caricature of an overly bookish young woman, who spends all of her time reading and memorizing texts, but doesn't really get the point of what she is reading, saying in conversation i.

    While she has inherited her father's fondness for books, she has also inherited her mother's lack of self-awareness and discernment ; only able to pick up on the most superficial meanings of what she reads, as well as a tendency to utter repetitions of phrases from the books in place of original conversation. Didactic and moralistic, Mary constantly recites awkward interpretations of what are supposed to be profound observations about human nature and life in general from her books, declaring them to be "[her] observations", unable to discern where different books by different authors contradict one another , and is totally unable to think critically about her books, giving them more benefit than people.

    When Mr. Collins is refused by Elizabeth, Mrs. Bennet hopes Mary may be prevailed upon to accept him, and the impression the reader is given is that Mary also harboured some hopes in this direction " Mrs. Bennet wished to understand by it that [Mr. Collins] thought of paying his address to one of her younger girls, and Mary might have been prevailed on to accept him. This also shows that Mary can be and is easily influenced simply by someone with the position in society, such as that of a clergyman ; her biased respect blinding her as to how ridiculous Mr.

    Collins actually is. Mary does work hard for her knowledge and accomplishments reading publications such as " Pastor Fordyce's Sermons to Young Women " , ever-diligently applying herself to them; but, despite the fact that she is studious, and was once described as the most accomplished girl in the neighbourhood; but, while none can question her fastidiousness, drive and work ethic, Mary yet lives in ignorance of the full meaning of almost everything she studies, and she sadly has neither genius nor taste and is potentially tone deaf , as she cannot discern that her singing is bad.

    However, it must also be noted that Mary is still a sympathetic character: her parents are biased and ineffective, her two older and younger sisters have neatly paired off together, which leaves her alone as the odd one out, and she is probably the Bennet daughter who is most ignored besides Kitty , which might be why she puts so much effort in trying to impress people, clinging to what she feels makes her stand out from her sisters possibly a mentally she has also inherited from her mother.

    Mary also has little understanding and sympathy for her sisters, Lydia most of all. Mary does not appear often in the novel. The long waiting time for letters create anticipation. This anticipation and curiosity of what the contents might say caused the arrival of letters to be an important event in daily life. Although the long waiting time can be seen as a hindrance, the anticipation that built up caused letters to be read more closely and have greater value and significance to the receiver. The news inside the letters, whether good or bad, set the tone for the day, for actions and emotions during the rest of the day reflected the contents of the letters.

    Austen includes some twenty letters in her narrative, suggesting the importance of correspondence in a closed circle of acquaintances with few amusements other than the exchange of news. Taken as a whole, the letters imply much about social convention with polish, politeness, and place, as well as preoccupation with the minute details of daily life. Austen expresses the importance of letters by writing: Every day at Longbourn was now a day of anxiety; but the most anxious part of each was when the post was expected. Through letters, whatever of good or bad was to be told would be communicated, and every succeeding day was expected to bring some news of importance Austen 6 The small mysteries and misunderstandings prevalent in the early part of the novel are dispelled by means of a series of important letters.

    The letter by Mr. Darcy to Elizabeth Bennet is seen as the most important of all the other letters, in fact, the turning point of the entire novel. His style was not penitent, but haughty. It was all pride and insolence till the topic of Mr. Bingley and Jane was succeeded by Mr. However, letters give other characters a chance to tell their side of the story and explain the motivations behind their actions. Such is the case with with Darcy, whose letter to Elizabeth explains to her and the reader his motivation behind separating Jane and Bingley and his side of the story with Wickham.

    This letter by Mr. Elizabeth repented about how prejudiced she had been towards Darcy after reading the letter a lot of times to actually overcome the real but bitter truth. His letter to Elizabeth shows that he respects Elizabeth and desires her good opinion despite his insulting proposal, since he trusts her with an important piece of family scandal.

    These letters also divulge the characters of the novel. In the letters to Elizabeth, Jane states that she is well over the reality that Mr. Bingley is no more in love with her. Though, it pained her to recall the cheerful moments of their love life at Netherfield, she did not give a second thought to it after she goes to the house of the Gardiners in London. Jane is always positive in her letters. These letters reveals the intimate relationship between the two sisters and projects Jane as a caring sister.

    The first letter written to Mr. Bennet by Mr. Collins is a masterpiece of pompous condescension, pedantically worded, giving us a complacent, snobbish and conceited word picture of him. Collins writes of his intention to wed one of the Bennet daughters as if he is doing the family a great favour. These letters reveals that he is a dramatic, simple-minded and unfeeling type of a human being.

    Gardiner fills in the gap of a mother where Mrs. Bennet does not. She is the one who discloses the information that Mr. Darcy was the one who helped in the marriage of Wickham and Lydia when asked by Elizabeth. Lizzy also comes to know that Mr. Darcy has cleared all the dues pending against Wickham in every place he stayed. These letters brings to light the close relation between aunt who is warm, solicitous and encouraging towards her niece. Though, there were no letters by Wickham to any character in the novel, but the descriptions given by Mr.

    Darcy and Mrs. Gardiner paints an image of him as a rash and selfish kind of man. Austen 7 The presentation of the letters in the novel reveals the social status and disposition of the writer: Soon after their return a letter was delivered to Miss Bennet; it came from Netherfield, and was opened immediately.

    Jane Austen employs letters in the novel to advance the plot, to take readers on a journey through high society love and life. An invitation to Netherfield, and a verbose letter announcing a visit from Mr. Collins, causes a flurry in a household of unmarried daughters and the anxious mother.

    Further letters temper the excitement as word arrives that the Bingleys are leaving for London and, later, that Lydia has eloped. Austen uses letters to link the novel together.