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Pride and Prejudice Quotes from Novel to Film (Chapter 14)

Continuing from my previous posts (Chapters 1-13), moving right on to Chapter 14, which is about dinner and conversations with the Bennet family and Mr. Collins at the Bennet family home in Longbourn.

Pride and Prejudice


"That is all very proper and civil I am sure,'' said Mrs. Bennet, "and I dare say she is a very agreeable woman. It is a pity that great ladies in general are not more like her. Does she live near you, sir?''
"The garden in which stands my humble abode is separated only by a lane from Rosings Park, her ladyship's residence.''

"I think you said she was a widow, sir? Has she any family?''
"She has one only daughter, the heiress of Rosings, and of very extensive property.''

"Ah!'' cried Mrs. Bennet, shaking her head, "then she is better off than many girls. And what sort of young lady is she? is she handsome?''

"She is a most charming young lady indeed. Lady Catherine herself says that in point of true beauty, Miss De Bourgh is far superior to the handsomest of her sex; because there is that in her features which marks the young woman of distinguished birth. She is unfortunately of a sickly constitution, which has prevented her making that progress in many accomplishments which she could not otherwise have failed of; as I am informed by the lady who superintended her education, and who still resides with them. But she is perfectly amiable, and often condescends to drive by my humble abode in her little phaeton and ponies.''

"Has she been presented? I do not remember her name among the ladies at court.''

"Her indifferent state of health unhappily prevents her being in town; and by that means, as I told Lady Catherine myself one day, has deprived the British court of its brightest ornament. Her ladyship seemed pleased with the idea, and you may imagine that I am happy on every occasion to offer those little delicate compliments which are always acceptable to ladies. I have more than once observed to Lady Catherine that her charming daughter seemed born to be a duchess, and that the most elevated rank, instead of giving her consequence, would be adorned by her. -- These are the kind of little things which please her ladyship, and it is a sort of attention which I conceive myself peculiarly bound to pay.''

"You judge very properly,'' said Mr. Bennet, "and it is happy for you that you possess the talent of flattering with delicacy. May I ask whether these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment, or are the result of previous study?''
"They arise chiefly from what is passing at the time, and though I sometimes amuse myself with suggesting and arranging such little elegant compliments as may be adapted to ordinary occasions, I always wish to give them as unstudied an air as possible.''

By tea-time, however, the dose had been enough, and Mr. Bennet was glad to take his guest into the drawing-room again, and when tea was over, glad to invite him to read aloud to the ladies. Mr. Collins readily assented, and a book was produced; but on beholding it (for every thing announced it to be from a circulating library), he started back, and begging pardon, protested that he never read novels. -- Kitty stared at him, and Lydia exclaimed. -- Other books were produced, and after some deliberation he chose Fordyce's Sermons. Lydia gaped as he opened the volume, and before he had, with very monotonous solemnity, read three pages, she interrupted him with, "Do you know, mama, that my uncle Philips talks of turning away Richard, and if he does, Colonel Forster will hire him. My aunt told me so herself on Saturday. I shall walk to Meryton to-morrow to hear more about it, and to ask when Mr. Denny comes back from town.''

Lydia was bid by her two eldest sisters to hold her tongue; but Mr. Collins, much offended, laid aside his book, and said, "I have often observed how little young ladies are interested by books of a serious stamp, though written solely for their benefit. It amazes me, I confess; -- for certainly, there can be nothing so advantageous to them as instruction. But I will no longer importune my young cousin.''

Pride & Prejudice (2005) 

Movie Script 

"Does she have any family?" (Mrs. Bennet)

"One daughter, the heiress of Rosings and very extensive property. I've often observed to Lady Catherine that her daughter seemed born to be a duchess, for she has all the superior graces of elevated rank. These are the kind of little delicate compliments which are always acceptable to the ladies and which I conceive myself particularly bound to pay." (Mr. Collins)

"How happy for you, Mr. Collins, to possess the talent for flattering with such delicacy." (Mr. Bennet)

"Do these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment or are they the result of previous study?" (Lizzie)

"They arise chiefly from what is passing at the time, and though I do sometimes amuse myself with arranging such little elegant compliments, I always wish to give them as unstudied an air as possible." (Mr. Collins)

"Believe me, no one would suspect your manners to be rehearsed." (Lizzie)

"After dinner I thought I might read to you all for an hour or two. I have with me Fordyce's Sermons, which speak very eloquently on all matters moral. Are you familiar with Fordyce's Sermons, Miss Bennet?" (Mr. Collins)



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