Happy Anniversary to Pride & Prejudice
Live long and prosper, Jane! Yes, mixing my genres there. Big day for Austen fans everywhere. I am sharing my thoughts, favorite videos, and much more on my blog. Come on over and celebrate this fabulous day with me: Sharon Lathan’s blog
If you missed the fabulous Wall Street Journal article titled “Austen Power” that posted online and in the print newspaper last Friday, 1/25, it isn’t too late! Both me and Abigail Reynolds were quoted within the article. You can read it by Google searching for the link (direct linking to WSJ will not work), or read the article in PDF format at this link:
You can find more a few more at Random Bits of Fascination, my blog. (Maria Grace)
It’s impossible for me to pick out a quote from Pride & Prejudice as my favorite. I have one for every mood, one for every kind of day. Instead, I decided to celebrate by examining more closely one of the passages in Pride & Prejudice that is often overlooked, but I think shows Jane Austen’s brilliance to perfection. Elizabeth’s reflections on the loss of Darcy’s esteem after Lydia’s elopement portray so beautifully the experience of through heartbreak, be it losing a high school boyfriend or major tragedy. Read it slowly, word by word, and luxuriate in it. Pride & Prejudice is 200 years young today because the characters are still so true.
From such a connection she could not wonder that he should shrink. The wish of procuring her regard, which she had assured herself of his feeling in Derbyshire, could not in rational expectation survive such a blow as this. She was humbled, she was grieved; she repented, though she hardly knew of what. She became jealous of his esteem, when she could no longer hope to be benefited by it. She wanted to hear of him, when there seemed the least chance of gaining intelligence. She was convinced that she could have been happy with him, when it was no longer likely they should meet.
What a triumph for him, as she often thought, could he know that the proposals which she had proudly spurned only four months ago, would now have been gladly and gratefully received! He was as generous, she doubted not, as the most generous of his sex. But while he was mortal, there must be a triumph.
She began now to comprehend that he was exactly the man who, in disposition and talents, would most suit her. His understanding and temper, though unlike her own, would have answered all her wishes. It was an union that must have been to the advantage of both; by her ease and liveliness, his mind might have been softened, his manners improved, and from his judgment, information, and knowledge of the world, she must have received benefit of greater importance. But no such happy marriage could now teach the admiring multitude what connubial felicity really was. An union of a different tendency, and precluding the possibility of the other, was soon to be formed in their family.
Thrilled to be celebrating the 200th birthday of Jane Austen’s masterpiece, Pride and Prejudice, with everyone here (and all around the world) today! I recently shared the major plot points of that brilliant book with novelists and screenwriters on the “Save the Cat!” blog, using a popular writing tool (created by Blake Snyder) called a beat sheet. If you’d like to take a look at the one for Austen’s P&P, it’s HERE!!
And, because there are so many quotes from the book that I love (I referenced many of them in my debut novel, According to Jane), here are three of my favorites:
“There are very few of us who have heart enough to be really in love without encouragement.”
“A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony, in a moment.”
“Heaven forbid! — That would be the greatest misfortune of all! — To find a man agreeable whom one is determined to hate!”
Hope you all have a fabulous day of celebration… And, Jane? Thank you for two centuries of utter enjoyment and classic romance!!! ~Marilyn Brant
Don’t miss the HUGE blog-hop planned by Alyssa Goodnight and Stiletto Storytime. Over 70 bloggers, including many of the Austen Authors, are participating with fun facts and shared love of Austen. Plus, lots of giveaways! Click the image to the right for the direct link. What a fabulous week!
Sally Smith O’Rourke
Like Abigail it is difficult for me to pick a single quote from Pride and Prejudice as there are so many lessons to be learned. In honor of the day I will endeavor to do so. I particularly like that Elizabeth and Darcy accept their flaws and faults and persevere to alter them. It’s that independence and strength that has always drawn me to them. Their ability to recognize the need for change and then do it is the centerpiece of the story for me.
For example, early on she admits that she could easily forgive his pride if he had not mortified her own. After reading and re-reading his letter Jane says: “Lizzy, when you first read that letter, I am sure you could not treat the matter as you do now.” “Indeed I could not. I was uncomfortable enough. I was very uncomfortable, I may say unhappy. And with no one to speak to, of what I felt, no Jane to comfort me and say that I had not been so very weak and vain and nonsensical as I knew I had. Oh! How I wanted you!” “…the misfortune of speaking with bitterness, is a most natural consequence of the prejudices I had been encouraging.”
His admission after the second proposal: “I have been a selfish being all my life, in practice, though not in principle. As a child I was taught what was right, but I was not taught to correct my temper. I was given good principles but left to follow them in pride and conceit. I was spoilt by my parents… allowed, encouraged, almost taught me to be selfish and overbearing, to care for none beyond my own family circle and to think meanly of all the rest of the world… Such I was from eight to eight and twenty; and such I might still have been but for you, dearest, loveliest Elizabeth!“
I do have a single favorite Austen quote is from Sense and Sensibility ~ It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.
These lines are the heart of Pride and Prejudice for me. I am happy to take part in any small way in the celebration of this iconic author and legendary book as we look out at the next 200 years. I am one of the bloggers (sallysmithorourke.com) in Alyssa Goodnights P&P Anniversary Hop ~ Stop by for a chance to win a special edition of the 1995 BBC/A&E mini-series and continue on with the HOP.
What impact has Pride and Prejudice had on you? It, simply put, has changed my life. For my thoughts in celebration of this special anniversary – and Jane Austen’s own upon the publication of her “darling child” – please hop on over to my site. It’s not far away.
“Yes, I call it a very easy distance.”
Favorite quote (by Mr. Bennet): “But, Lizzy, you look as if you did not enjoy it. You are not going to be Missish, I hope, and pretend to be affronted at an idle report. For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbours, and laugh at them in our turn?”
Excellent advice. I have a brief post on my blog about my visit to Chawton House. Happy Anniversary, Jane.