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Pride and Prejudice

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Since its immediate success in 1813, Pride and Prejudice has remained one of the most popular novels in the English language. Jane Austen called this brilliant work "her own darling child" and its vivacious heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, "as delightful a creature as ever appeared in print." The romantic clash between the opinionated Elizabeth and her proud beau, Mr. Darcy, is a splendid performance of civilized sparring. And Jane Austen's radiant wit sparkles as her characters dance a delicate quadrille of flirtation and intrigue, making this book the most superb comedy of manners of Regency England.

Alternate cover edition of ISBN 9780679783268

279 pages, Paperback

First published January 28, 1813

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About the author

Jane Austen

2,088 books64k followers
Jane Austen was an English novelist whose works of romantic fiction, set among the landed gentry, earned her a place as one of the most widely read writers in English literature, her realism and biting social commentary cementing her historical importance among scholars and critics.
Austen lived her entire life as part of a close-knit family located on the lower fringes of the English landed gentry. She was educated primarily by her father and older brothers as well as through her own reading. The steadfast support of her family was critical to her development as a professional writer. Her artistic apprenticeship lasted from her teenage years until she was about 35 years old. During this period, she experimented with various literary forms, including the epistolary novel which she tried then abandoned, and wrote and extensively revised three major novels and began a fourth. From 1811 until 1816, with the release of Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma (1815), she achieved success as a published writer. She wrote two additional novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, both published posthumously in 1818, and began a third, which was eventually titled Sanditon, but died before completing it.
Austen's works critique the novels of sensibility of the second half of the 18th century and are part of the transition to 19th-century realism. Her plots, though fundamentally comic, highlight the dependence of women on marriage to secure social standing and economic security. Her work brought her little personal fame and only a few positive reviews during her lifetime, but the publication in 1869 of her nephew's A Memoir of Jane Austen introduced her to a wider public, and by the 1940s she had become widely accepted in academia as a great English writer. The second half of the 20th century saw a proliferation of Austen scholarship and the emergence of a Janeite fan culture.

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5 stars
2,220,810 (54%)
4 stars
1,098,865 (27%)
3 stars
488,982 (12%)
2 stars
145,664 (3%)
1 star
98,641 (2%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 105,949 reviews
Profile Image for Tharindu Dissanayake.
287 reviews557 followers
April 11, 2023
"I have been meditating on the very great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty woman can bestow."

Some of my happiest, and most looked-forward-to days of the year are the ones that I reserve for the re-reading of Pride and Prejudice. To quote Austen herself from Sense and Sensibility: ‘if a book is well written, I always find it too short,’ explains perfectly how I feel about this book; no wonder she called this ‘my own darling child,’ for, for me, P&P is perfect in every conceivable way. It’s the kind of book, the moment you finished reading, you are tempted to start over again immediately. However, reviewing this is another matter… I’m excited, enraptured, but at the same time agitated, knowing that it’s impossible to do justice to the author nor to the book.

"But such of us as wished to learn never wanted the means. We were always encouraged to read, and had all the masters that were necessary."

During my first reading of Pride and Prejudice, I had known I was hugely underqualified to review this book, though at the same time I had hoped, if I read all of her books, I might, in time, write an acceptable review for this masterpiece. Now that I’ve read them all, and also P&P for a second time, all I can say is I still don’t consider myself remotely qualified to write an objective review. But it is impossible not share one’s opinions after reading this: this book, for me, is as best as it could get. So, for the time being, I’ll have to be content with writing what I consider to be a subjective overview, which, I’m certain, does not do much justice. However, I hope that someday my sense in classical literature would become good enough to truly appreciate how remarkable this book is.

"You shall not, for the sake of one individual, change the meaning of principle and integrity."
"Importance may sometimes be purchased too dearly."
"What praise is more valuable than the praise of an intelligent servant?"

Starting with the plot, which has been thoroughly analyzed, criticized, and commented upon by thousands of readers, is surprisingly, at a glance, not that original, especially if you see this as a pure romance novel. True, there are many complications resulting from multiple relationships (or marriages), but overall, there are many similarities. But what makes this special is Austen’s narrative: the sly humor, witty observations, unique lens through which she views the society, and the deeper understanding of morals of characters, are all perfectly concocted using her flawless writing style. And then there’s Elizabeth; aside from inheriting traits like humor and wit from Austen, she is lively, curious, confident, but without becoming ‘too perfect’ (like some of the Austen’s other protagonists). She is as delightful as it could get. Rest of the characters are also similarly entertaining, with each one infused with a myriad of qualities to keep the story interesting. I don’t think there was a single poorly written character in this book, and that’s the first time I’ve ever said that about a book. And I don’t wish a single thing had turned out differently in this story. With the exception of some of the children’s books, that’s also a first for me. Sometimes it’s hard to imagine, that this has been written over 200 years ago, or this ever becoming dated. Unlike with most romance novels, you will not see the reasoning, or common sense become lost in the middle of the story, which I think will help maintain that timelessness.

"Affectation of candour is common enough — one meets with it everywhere. But to be candid without ostentation or design — to take the good of everybody’s character and make it still better, and say nothing of the bad—belongs to you alone."

This second reading of the book only strengthened above opinions from my first read. If anything, everything felt even clearer, making the reading experience further satisfying. The only minor exception came with Lydia’s plotline. Compared to my opinion from the first reading, where I had been a bit angry with her, that emotion has been somewhat shifted a little towards sympathy this time. Obviously, same couldn’t be said about Wickham though. I also felt like that every single word here is essential during this second read. Although I didn’t skip a single word during the first time, I believe I enjoyed each sentence a lot more this time.

"Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us."

Until now (that is till I finish my second read), I’ve never watched any of the TV or movie adaptations of Pride and Prejudice. To be honest, I didn’t want to have any negative impact towards the perfect imaginary picture Austen had created. But after this second read, I decided to watch the 2005 movie, the 1995 TV series and the 1980 series, and couldn’t resist sharing some of my thoughts. As much as I appreciate the effort, the 2005 movie did not prove to be a worthy portrayal, at least for me. Maybe it’s the modern characters, or what had to be removed due to time restrictions, or deviations from original book, but at the end of the day, I cannot say I loved it that much. But the 1995 series was quite the surprise! It literally had almost every single dialog from the book, with a few exceptions at the end. It did add up to five and a half hours of play time, but that was totally worth it. If you loved the book, and haven’t watched the series, do watch it immediately. As for the 1980 series, though I loved it a lot, it fell a tiny bit behind the 1995 series. But both those series are commendable portrayals.

“Nothing is more deceitful,” said Darcy, “than the appearance of humility.
"The misfortune of speaking with bitterness is a most natural consequence of the prejudices"

As for this review, I’m going to label this as a work in progress, which I’m hoping to update after each re-read.

"The distance is nothing when one has a motive;"
The happiest, wisest, most reasonable end!
Profile Image for Miranda Reads.
1,589 reviews157k followers
April 29, 2021
Old books get a bad rap...but do they deserve it? Check out my latest BooktTube Video - all about the fabulous (and not so fabulous) Olde Boies.

The Written Review :

To summarize: Mister. Darcy.

*cue the long, sustained high-pitched squealing *

This was truly as glorious as I remember. Every time I reread this novel, I love it more.
The romance , the high society , the witty banter. Gah. I just adore it all.
"And your defect is to hate everybody."

"And yours," he replied with a smile, "is willfully to misunderstand them."
Elizabeth Bennet (second eldest of the five Bennet sisters) is the one with a clear, level head. Jane is the beautiful one, Mary is the look-at-me-I'm-so-pious one, Lydia is the I'm-so-dumb-that-I'm-probably-going-to-get-murdered one and Kitty is the well-she's-just-kinda-there one.

Now, back in the day...there was one, singular goal for all women above the age of 16. GET YOURSELF A MAN before you reach 25 and become a SPINSTER *cue high-society ladies fainting*.
Mrs. Bennet (their mother) has taken this so completely to heart that she thinks of nothing else. After all,
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.
Mr. Bingley and Mr. Darcy moved into town and immediately Mrs. Bennett set her dasterdly plans in motion (on behalf of her mortified children). She will do whatever necessary to get a rich man to put a ring on it (oh Beyonce, your words are applicable in any century).
A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.
Only, there is a snag in her otherwise flawless plans. Elizabeth is not going to roll over to whatever man is thrust her way. To her mother's ever-living-disappointment, Elizabeth has all the spunk and backbone of a truly glorious woman:
I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.
Truly a great read, no matter the century.

Plus Jane Austen is totally my soul sister.
I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! -- When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.


Audiobook Comments
As with most old-timey books, It is far easier for me to listen to them than to read them. I like hearing the odd phrases and ancient unused words much more than struggling through the hard copy. I really enjoyed this audiobook and the narrator did a fab job of characterization.

The 2018 ABC Challenge - P

YouTube | Blog | Instagram | Twitter | Snapchat @miranda.reads

Happy Reading!
Profile Image for Stephen.
1,516 reviews11.2k followers
December 4, 2013
6.0 stars. Confession...this book gave me an earth-shattering Janeaustegasm and I am feeling a bit spent and vulnerable at the moment, so please bear with me. You see, I decided I wanted to get more literated by reading the "classicals" in between my steady flow of science fiction, mystery and horror. The question was where to begin.

After sherlocking through my Easton Press collection, I started by pulling out my Dickens and reading A Tale of Two Cities which I thought was jaw-dropping AMAZO and left me feeling warm, satisfied and content. It also made me made retrospectively pleased that I named my youngest daughter Sydney.

After Two City “Tale”ing, I decided to give this book a whirl as I kept seeing it on GR lists of "goodest books ever." However, I must admit I was hesitant going in to this for two big reasons. One, I thought it might be a bit too romantical for me. The second, and much more distressing, reason was that Twilight was on many of the same lists as this book. Austen fans should pull a nutty over that one.

So needless to say I went into this thinking I might hate it. Well, for the 999,987th time in my life (at least according to my wife’s records)...I was wrong!!! I absolutely loved this book and had a mammoth, raging heart-on for it from the opening scene at the breakfast table when Father Witty (Mr. Bennet) is giving sly sarcasm to Mrs. Mommie Put Upon. I literaphorically could not get enough of this story. I was instantly captivated by the characters and Elizabeth Bennet, the main protagonist, immediately became one of my all time favorite characters. Mr. Darcy joined that party as soon as he showed up in the narrative as I thought he was terrific as well.

Overall, the writing could not have been better. It was descriptive, lush and brilliant. The story could not have been more engaging or intelligent and the characters could not have been more magnificentastic. Elizabeth and Fitz are both smart, witty, self-confident and good. Austen could not have written them better. Oh, and I am sorry if this is a bit of a minor spoiler but I need to add that George Wickham is a cock-blocking braggadouche of startling proportions. I needed to say that and now I feel better.

This one has made it onto my list of All Time Favorite novels and is truly one of the classics that lives up to its billing. A FINAL WORD TO THE GUYS: ...Guys, do not fear the Austen...embrace the Austen...HIGHEST POSSIBLE RECOMMENDATION!!!
Profile Image for emma.
1,864 reviews54.3k followers
September 8, 2023
I am so unqualified to write about this book.

I am physically unqualified, because I could write infinite words about how much I love this book, and I type in a weird way that makes my wrists hurt so infinity is simply not going to happen.

I am emotionally unqualified, because I lack emotional intelligence when it comes to my own feelings and the idea of trying to explain how I feel about this book is overwhelming.

I am spiritually unqualified, because of the aforementioned overwhelmed-ness.

I am also unqualified generally, in the grand scheme of things, because so many people have written so intelligently about the wonderfulness of this book and I have nothing better to add.

Just more rambling like this.

I read a lot of romance, and if you want to venture a theory as to why, I’d love to hear it. I very seldom like it, so maybe it’s a masochist tendency. Maybe I’m a glutton for the attention that writing negative reviews of popular books gives me. (Definitely not that one, since the few mean comments always outweigh the far more numerous nice ones in my stupid brain.) Whatever.

I read a lot of romance, but I almost never feel anything about it.

I LOVE this book. It gives me...uh…(everyone stop reading this to save me the embarrassment and allow me to preserve my rough and tumble reputation)...butterflies.

I know. I’m cringing forever. But it’s true.

This is a lovely book. It’s beautifully written, it’s funny, it’s filled with characters who feel full and real and different from one another (even though half of them have the same name), and it truly is the best love story ever told.

What more could you ask for?! Spoiled rotten, the lot of you.

Bottom line: A dream.

rereading updates

i am currently being paid to reread this book. highly recommend that everyone works in publishing


starting a fundraiser to raise money for a monument in honor of Jane Austen's brain

review to come / 5 stars obviously

currently-reading updates

my heart has space for exactly 435 pages. the entirety of my heart is made up of Pride & Prejudice. nothing else.
Profile Image for Rolls.
130 reviews318 followers
March 12, 2007
"Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen started off annoying me and ended up enchanting me. Up until about page one hundred I found this book vexing, frivolous and down right tedious. I now count myself as a convert to the Austen cult.

I must confess I have been known to express an antipathy for anything written or set before 1900. I just cannot get down with corsets, outdoor plumbing and buggy rides. Whenever someone dips a quill into an inkwell my eyes glaze over. This is a shortcoming I readily own up to but have no desire to correct. So I admit to not starting this book with the highest of hopes. I did really enjoy Ang Lee's "Sense and Sensibility" however and so when my friend threw the gauntlet down I dutifully picked it up.

Boy did I hate him at first. To get anywhere with this book one has to immerse oneself in the realities of life and marriage in the nineteenth century. At first all this talk of entailment and manners just left me cold. I liked the language to be sure. Austen's dialogue is delightful through out but dialogue alone (no matter how delicious) does not a great novel make.

A hundred pages or so in though I started to see what a shrewd eye for character this Austen woman had. Mr. Collins was the first person I marvelled at. His character springs forth fully formed as a total but somehow loveable ass. From that point on I found much to love about this book. I was so into it by the end that I was laughing at some characters, sympathizing with others and clucking my tongue at an unhappy few. In short I was completely absorbed.

In conclusion I must now count myself a fan of Miss Austen's novels (and not just their fim adaptations) and do so look forward to acqauinting myself with more of her work in the future. "Emma" anyone?
Profile Image for Elizabeth.
275 reviews728 followers
February 8, 2020
NOTE: The review you are about to read was written in 2009. 2009! That's over 10 years ago! I was 17 and thought I was the smartest person ever! In all honesty, I barely remember this book. So, negative comments regarding my intelligence are no longer necessary. They will be ignored. As they have been for probably 7 years now. CARRY ON!

P.S. Can we all just LOL at my use of the words "mind-numbing balls"?? HA.

This book is quite possibly the most insipid novel I have ever read in my life. Why this book is so highly treasured by society is beyond me. It is 345 pages of nothing. The characters are like wispy shadows of something that could be interesting, the language that could be beautiful ends up becoming difficult to decipher and lead me more than once to skip over entire paragraphs because I became tired of having to stumble through them only to emerge unsatisfied, and the plot is non-existent, as though Austen one day decided she wanted to write a novel and began without having any idea what would happen except that there would be a boy and a girl who seemingly didn’t like each other but in the end got married. The story really probably could have been told in about 8 pages, but Austen makes us slog through 345 pages of mind-numbing balls and dinner-parties. I don’t care what anyone says, this is not great literature. This is a snore.

Read my review of Pride and Prejudice and Zombies.
Profile Image for MacK.
608 reviews198 followers
December 4, 2013
Where my massive crush on Jane Austen began: alone, on a hot day in Montana, cursing her name.

I had to read it for AP English and I could not see the point. Girls need to marry. Girls can't get married. Girls are sad. Girls get married. Girls are happy.

I went to school to half heartedly discuss it and waffled and wavered in an effort to please my teacher. Finally she said: "was it good or not, Ben?"

"No it wasn't."

"Thank you...now read this twenty pages of literary criticism for homework."

Twenty pages of literary criticism later, I was hooked. Once you know what to look for, it's hilarious. Once you're keyed into the contextual life of women, you have to feel for the plight of the Bennet sisters, and laugh at the crudity of their mother and Mr. Collins.

So yes: I'm a guy and I love Jane Austen. You got a problem with that? Huh? Huh? Do you? Huh??? Well if you do, I'll be over here nursing my dorkiness just waiting for a fight for the honor of my beloved Jane.
Profile Image for Troy.
12 reviews
March 20, 2009
I was forced to read this by my future wife.
I was not, however, forced to give it 5 stars.
Profile Image for Zoë.
328 reviews65.8k followers
December 13, 2018
Profile Image for NickReads.
461 reviews1,196 followers
June 4, 2020
Austen was a brilliant writer.

This story is timeless.

Simply beautiful.
Profile Image for ♛ may.
806 reviews3,830 followers
February 1, 2019
can you believe elizabeth and darcy invented the 'enemies to lovers' trope and have been the most iconic power couple to exist ever since
Profile Image for Richard Derus.
2,970 reviews1,984 followers
October 21, 2021
Well-loathed books I've re-read

Rating: 4 very annoyed, crow-feathered stars out of five

The Book Report: No. Seriously. If your first language isn't English, or if you're like nine years old, you might not know the story. Note use of conditional.

My Review: All right. All right, dammit! I re-read the bloody thing. I gave it two stars before. I was wrong-headed and obtuse and testosterone poisoned. I refuse to give it five stars, though. Look, I've admitted I was wrong about how beautiful the writing is, and how amusing the story is. Don't push.

Stephen Sullivan, who rated this with six stars of five, is now on a summer travel break from Goodreads, so I can publish this admission: He was right. It is a wonderful book. I had to grow into it, much as I had to grow into my love for Mrs. Dalloway. But now that I'm here, I am a full-on fan.

Deft is a word that seems to have been created for Austen. She writes deftly, she creates scenes deftly. She isn't, despite being prolix to a fault, at all heavy-handed or nineteenth-century-ish in her long, long, long descriptions. She is the anti-Dickens: Nothing slapdash or gimcrack or brummagem about her prose, oh nay nay nay. Words are deployed, not flung or splodged or simply wasted. The long, long, long sentences and paragraphs aren't meant to be speed-read, which is what most of us do now. They are meant to be savored, to be treated like Louis XIII cognac served in a cut-crystal snifter after a simple sole meunière served with haricots verts and a perfect ripe peach for dessert.

The romantic elements seem, at first blush, a wee tidge trite. And they are. Now. Why are they? Because, when Miss Jane first used them in Pride and Prejudice, they worked brilliantly and they continue so to do unto this good day. Why? Because these are real feelings expressed in a real, genuine, heartfelt way, as constrained by the customs of the country and times. And isn't that, in the end, what makes reading books so delicious? I, a fat mean old man with no redeeming graces, a true ignorant lower-class lout of the twenty-first century, am in full contact with the mind, the heart, the emotional core of a lady of slender means born during the reign of George III.

You tell me what, on the surface of this earth, is more astonishing, more astounding, more miraculous than that. Jane Austen and I Had A Moment. She's Had A Moment with literally millions of English-speakers for over 200 years. She's had moments with non-English speakers for more than a century. Elizabeth Bennet and Fitzwilliam Darcy are cultural furniture for a large percentage of the seven billion people on the planet. (Large here is a relative term. Less than one? Still amazing for a book 200 years old.)

Reading is traveling in time, in space, but most importantly inside. Inside yourself, inside the characters' emotions, inside the author's head and heart. It is a voyage of discovery, whether you're reading some bizarro mess, Dan Brown's mess, religious tracts, Twilight, whatever. You-the-reader are going somewhere in a more intimate contact than you-the-reader have with any other being on the planet. Movies, TV, sex, none of them take you as deep into the essence of feeling and emotion as reading does. And no, snobs, it does NOT matter if it's well written, it matters that the book speaks to the reader. (Sometimes, of course, what one learns is how very shallow and vapid some people are...I'm lookin' at you, Ms. Fifty Shades.)

So I thank that rotten, stinkin' Stephen-the-absent Sullivan, safe in the knowledge he won't see me admitting this, for reminding me to live up to my own goal of remaining open to change. I heard him yodeling his rapture, and I revisited the book, and I learned something valuable:

Only admit you're wrong when the person you don't want to embarrass yourself in front of isn't around to see.
Profile Image for Anne.
4,053 reviews69.5k followers
July 21, 2021
Mr. Darcy...


First, we need to clear something up. Colin Firth is the only Mr. Darcy.
That other Mr. Darcy was horrible! No, no, no, no, nooooo!
Make it stop. Make. It. Stop.


So, quite obviously, the BBC miniseries (in all its 327 minute glory) is the only version that is acceptable. The other movie was such a travesty to this book, that I wept big, fat, angry tears...like the spoiled brat that I am.
Or maybe I'm exaggerating slightly.
What were they thinking?! You don't mess with perfection!
What did you think, Elizabeth?



I'm kidding. Sort of.

Anyway, instead of reading it this time around, I listened to an audiobook version. Apparently, which audio version you listen to makes a difference.
My real-life BFF said her version had an American doing British accents and she found it terribly annoying. I, however, had a version with an actual lady from the land of tea 'n crumpets, and she did a fine job. Well, she did have this lounge singerish voice, so instead of sounding like a fresh-faced 20 year old, Elizabeth sounded like she had been smoking 3 packs a day for about 40 years.
Eh, I was ok with it. I kept imagining Lizzie with a cigarette dangling from her lips like a truck stop hooker, and it gave the story a fresh perspective.


I've read this so many times over the years that I've lost count, but I still wish I could go back and read it for the first time all over again.
I hated that stupid, arrogant, arse-faced Mr. Darcy when he first showed up at the ball. Ugh. What a prick!
So, just like Lizzie, I remember being shocked at his proposal. And just like Lizzie, I was horrified by the way he dissed her family while he did it!
And how could he think she would ever agree to marry him after the way he convinced Bingley that Jane didn't love him?!
And the way he treated poor Wickham!
Just who did this guy think he was!


But then...The Letter!
Oh, my! Well, that certainly put a different spin on things didn't it?!
Elizabeth & I were so ashamed that we had judged him so harshly.
*hangs head*
And the way he acted toward us when we met near the lake!
So kind...such a gentleman!


Ok, I've probably read that particular scene (at Pemberley) a million times. Sometimes, I would just pick up and start the book from there.
Total comfort food.
It's just...ahhhhhhhhhhh.

Of course, Lydia has to go and ruin everything! How could she be such a stupid, selfish, uncaring twat!? Grrrrrrr!
*strangle, strangle, strangle*


How will Darcy and I...I mean, Darcy and Elizabeth...manage to get their Happily Ever After?
Feelings! Oh, the feelings!


So. Yes, I'm unashamed to admit that I am that cliché of a woman who loves Pride and Prejudice. Unashamed!
I just...{insert fangirl screaming and crying}
*Throws panties at Mr. Darcy*

Profile Image for Anne.
63 reviews
February 23, 2011
Critics who consider Austen's works trivial because of their rigid, upper-class setting, wealthy characters, domestic, mannered plots and happy endings are almost totally disconnected from reality, as far as I can tell. What can they possibly expect an upper-middle class English woman to write about in 1813 but what she knows or can imagine? Sci-fi? A history of the American Revolution? A real-life exposé of underage exploitation in the garment district of London? Come on. What other setting can she be expected to tackle with authority? Austen's value lies in her portraiture: her characters are believably human in their concerns, vanities, failings and quirks. The plots serve largely to showcase their interaction and thus, her observations of human nature, which are pointed, accurate, and hysterical.

Here, in her best work (my opinion), her technical skill as a writer also shows in Pride and Prejudice's tight plotting and economical casting; there are no superfluous characters or wasted chapters here. My college lit professor used to go on and on about this novel as a revolution of literary form in that dialogue drives the plot as much as exposition; I'll buy that but it doesn't thrill me for its own sake as much as it did her. It does mean, though, that Pride and Prejudice is a relatively smooth and lively read, that we learn about events and characters as much from what they say to each other as from what Austen narrates to us. The banter between Darcy and Elizabeth isn't empty flirting, it's a progression, a chart of their ongoing understanding/misunderstanding and a way to take stock of plot developments as well as an enjoyable display of wit.

Austen's heroines are famously caught between love and money are famously criticized for always getting both in the end. I've got no problem with this wish fulfillment. Keep in mind that being married is basically the only possible 'job' available to a woman of her position--marrying a rich dude is the only viable escape from the life of poor-relation dependency Austen herself lived, there's nothing reactionary or anti-feminist about it. The other option--becoming a governess--is barely respectable, putting a woman into an ambiguous class limbo of social invisibility that translates directly into a loss of safety and self-governance. Expecting Elizabeth to, what, become a doctor? is silly and anachronistic, and perhaps if that's your preference you'd be better off reading Clan of the Cave Bear, with Ayla and her bearskin bra, or what have you.

Pride and Prejudice is simply a joy to read, a dance of manners and affection between the leads and a parade of human silliness in the supporting cast.

edited to add: some thoughts specific to the Patricia Meyer Spacks annotated edition I received as a gift for Christmas 2010:

It’s quite remarkably handsome, and sturdy, and useful for whacking spiders if you are that sort of person. Generously illustrated with color and black-and-white sketches, engravings, and reproductions of earlier editions, household objects, relevant artwork, contemporary cartoons, diagrams and fashion plates.

My attention wandered during the editor’s introduction in what turned out to be a horribly familiar way. While I appreciated Spacks’s discussion of historical background, her warnings about the subtlety of language and characterization, and the dangers of identifying too much with our favorite characters because Austen stacks the deck for that purpose, etc etc, it was a sort of technical appreciation--dry, and a little bit soulless. I was, perhaps, impatient. At some point as I yanked my eyes back to the pages I kept trying to read, I realized: Spacks is a Professor Emerita at the University of Virginia--my former stomping grounds (wahoo-wa!) (...sorry, that happens)--it’s more than possible she was MY professor back in 19. I don’t remember her name or face, but certainly her style, the steel trap of her mind, and the mildly pushy feeling of her obsession with language all felt very very familiar. So, grain of salt: I may have some kind of baggage here.

That said, this is a must-own for the serious P&P fan. As with any annotated edition, I wouldn’t recommend it for a first or even third reading of the book--these notes take up half-to-full pages, sometimes continuing to the next, and only if you’re already familiar with the text of the book itself can you spare attention to wander off down these other roads. Keep another straight copy of P&P around for when you just want to read the thing. Some footnotes are simple definitions, or style notes: some are mini-essays that include their own cited references. Spacks includes centuries of Austen scholarship in her notes, not just contemporaries, so points of view vary widely. There’s quite a smorgasbord of textual commentary to pick through, and you’re sure to find little tidbits that strike you as especially resonant or horrendously wrong and weird.

Two tidbits I liked: first, a primary source. One note, in discussing the complicated British class system of the day, refers to a table constructed by one Patrick Colquhoun in his A Treatise on the Wealth, Power and Resources of the British Empire, in Every Quarter of the World (2nd ed., London, 1815, pp 106-107)--a table which lays out exactly where, for instance, Darcy stands in relation to the Bennett family. He’s in the “second class,” they’re in the fourth. Clearly people put a lot of time and effort into codifying and arguing about societal structure, status and behavior, and I think that would be a fascinating thing to read.

Another note I lingered over involves Mr. Collins, a character we love to hate. Here's the upside of an annotated edition: I’d never bothered to give Mr Collins much of my attention, since he’s icky--but Spacks points out the oddity of a snippet that I'd always ignored before. In bidding Elizabeth farewell from Hunsford, Mr Collins apologizes profusely for the humbleness of his style of living, as if he considered her socially above him--and this is a complete 180 from his incredibly condescending proposal of marriage earlier in the book, where he deigns to presume he’s taking a burden from her parents by opting to support her. Also, Spacks has a lot to say about Elizabeth's inconsistency and lack of generosity towards Charlotte Lucas--traits I'd noticed in past readings without following through to some of their logical conclusions and their connections with Elizabeth's later behavior.

Definitely worth the purchase price! Add it to your collection, but don't make it your only copy, since it's hard to tuck under your pillow.

Profile Image for Mario the lone bookwolf.
805 reviews3,846 followers
December 4, 2022
The Olympus of protagonist focused classic writing

Austen owned her era
The perfection of this novel is amazing and until today it´s difficult to impossible to name another book that has the same character development, hidden social critique, and amazing characters in a classical setting dealing with the grievances of an epoch. So less action and so much suspense just created by the inner perspective of the main protagonists that it´s a pleasure to read and reread. I just can´t get behind how Austen could write like a goddess and what makes each scene, word, setting, and plot twist so smooth and easy-going, while diving so deep under the skin of this bizarre, ancient society.

Insider jokes to avoid the censors of the time
What I love about classics is the background, the society, norms and rules, and how the authors integrated, criticized, and commented on the big topics of their time and avoided censorship. Like Twain, London and a handful of other writers Austen has conserved the spirit of those days for eternity, making it a funny, intense, and unique novel.

Evolution of feminist emancipation
It shows how complex women's roles evolved during history and how the immense stupidity of male-made humanities restricted much freedom and human rights and integrated hilarious, epic monuments of facepalmgasms instead. Just irony and satire in their highest form can be used as a mirror to reflect the impressions of a not so far away past, and to be able to laugh instead of sigh about it. If it just was history everywhere.

So much better than most of the male writers of that time
At a time when great writing could just be powered by talent, perseverance, intelligence, exercise, and passion (because there was no creative writing course just around the next corner or online), avoiding conservative worldviews and dogmas of the time, Austen wrote vivid, cliffhangery, and in perfect length with an inherent instinct for the rules of how to make true art. Not like many, mostly male, others, who praised their stupid beliefs in their racist, intolerant, and bad novels, or became pseudointellectual and impossible to understand for mentally healthy readers without narcissistic tendencies to push their ego (here, gratuitously hyped author, take that Nobel prize for that. Again), she wrote literature at it´s best.

Unfounded criticism of her work
I guess that many critics don´t have the time or interest to invest more effort than just reading it without a bit of researching history and the authors' biography to get the full pleasure of all the hidden easter eggs. Without that, it may really seem much more superficial and less well constructed than with the extra knowledge that enables one to enjoy it in full fan mode.

It aged well
Just as a good wine (I don´t like wine, I´m a beer and vodka guy, it´s just about the allegory) classics need time, have to breathe, have to be consumed mindfully and consciously in certain doses, and a bit of decadent study about where the grapes were grown, what meal applies to it, etc. is never a bad idea. Otherwise, they would be indistinguishable from the mass-produced, blockbuster, media-hyped, disposable clone armies of today's literature. The same cheap booze that was already winepressed in each epoch to meet the expectations of ( then bigoted, now too uncritical) readers, that don´t care about the hangover more sophisticated consumers get from mental intoxication.
That´s of course only true for non favorite genres I´m not (cognitively) biased, and thereby subjectively and emotionally bound, on.

Tropes show how literature is conceptualized and created and which mixture of elements makes works and genres unique:

A wiki walk can be as refreshing to the mind as a walk through nature in this completely overrated real life outside books:
Profile Image for Ahmad Sharabiani.
9,564 reviews41 followers
July 28, 2021
(Book 938 from 1001 Books) - Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice is a romantic novel by Jane Austen, first published in 1813.

The story charts the emotional development of the protagonist, Elizabeth Bennet, who learns the error of making hasty judgments and comes to appreciate the difference between the superficial and the essential.

عنوان: غرور و تعصب - جین اوستین (نشر نی، بنگاه ترجمه و نشر، زرین) ادبیات انگلستان؛ تاریخ نخستین خوانش: سال 1974میلادی

عنوان: غرور و تعصب؛ اثر: جین اوستین (آستین)؛ مترجم: شمس الملوک وزیری؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، بنگاه ترجمه و نشر کتاب، 1336، در 661ص، زیر نظر احسان یارشاطر؛ موضوع داستانهای نویسندگان بریتانیا - سده 19م

مترجم: شاهرخ پورانفر، تهران، زرین، 1362، در 536ص
مترجم: رضا رضایی، تهران، نشر نی، 1385، در 449ص

ترجمه های دیگر خانمها و آقایان: «شایسته ابراهیمی»؛ «فرزانه حاجیلوئیان»؛ «صنعان صدیقی»؛ «راضیه میرزایی»؛ «عبدالحسین صبوری»؛ «اعظم ضامن‌پور»؛ «مرتضی صادقی‌زاده»؛ «مجید غلامی شاهدی»؛ «فائزه ارباب»؛ «فرناز سلطانی»؛ «سهیلا امامی»؛ «سعیده هاشمی»؛ «میروحید ذنوبی»؛ «الهام رحمانی»؛ «نوید اصلانی»؛ «مجید معتمدی راد»؛ «بهاره هاشمیان»؛ «میترا میرشکار»؛ «فرشید غضنفری و حسن طاهری»؛ «مریم امیری»؛ «فاطمه نصرتی»؛ «كیوان عبیدی‌آشتیانی»؛ «فرناز اخوان‌طباطبایی»؛ «رحیم اصلانی»؛ «کرم شکرزاده»؛ «رستو عوض‌زاده»؛ «سبا هاشمی‌نسب»؛ «مهشید مجتهدزاده»؛ «سحر پوریایی»؛ «هانیه چوپانی»؛ و ...؛

داستان را «جین آستین» در سن بیست و یک سالگی، و در سال 1796میلادی بنوشته است، و برای نخستین بار در سال 1813میلادی چاپ شده؛ و در ایران به سال 1336هجری خورشیدی، با ترجمه ی بانو «شمس الملوک وزیری»، به زیور طبع آراسته گشته است؛ آقا و خانم «بنت» پنج دختر دارند «جین»، «الیزابت»، «لیدیا»، «مری»، و «کیتیا».؛ «جین» و «الیزابت»، بزرگتر و زیباتر از سه خواهر دیگر خویش هستند؛ مردی سرشناس و ثروتمند، به نام «چارلز بینگلی»، در باغ خویش، و در همسایگی آنها زندگی میکند؛ او بسیار مهربان و خوش چهره است؛ خانم «بنت» کوشش میکند، مرد جوان یکی از دخترانش را، به همسری خویش برگزیند؛ و ... ادامه داستان؛

نقل از برگردان جناب رضا رضایی: («الیزابت» که دلیلی نمی‌دید این حالت بلاتکلیفی را ادامه بدهد، به محض رفتن «کیتی»، با جسارت تمام باز هم با آقای «دارسی» راه رفت؛ حالا وقتش شده بود که تصمیمش را عملی کند؛ به خودش جرئت داد و گفت: آقای «دارسی»، من آدم کاملا خودخواهی هستم؛ برای آرامش دادن به احساسات خودم هیچ فکر نمی‌کنم که شاید احساسات شما جریحه دار بشود؛ نمی‌توانم جلو خودم را بگیرم و بابت محبت فوق العاده‍ ای که در حق خواهر بیچاره‌ ام کرده‌ اید از شما تشکر نکنم

از وقتیکه به این مطلب پی برده‌ ام، مدام دلم می‌خواسته به شما بگویم که چه احساس امتنانی دارم؛ اگر بقیۀ افراد خانواده نیز می‌دانستند، الان صرفاً من نبودم که تشکر خود را به زبان می‌آوردم؛ «دارسی» هیجان‌زده و متعجب جواب داد: متأسفم، خیلی متأسفم که شما از موضوعی باخبر شده‌ اید که اگر درست به شما انتقال نداده باشند، احتمالا باعث رنجش می‌شود؛ هیچ فکر نمی‌کردم که خانم «گاردینر» اینقدر غیرقابل اعتماد باشند؛ - زن دایی‌ ام تقصیری ندارد؛ حواس پرتی «لیدیا» باعث شد من بفهمم شما در قضیه دخیل بوده‌ اید؛ خب، من هم تا جزئیات برایم روشن نمی‌شد، آرامش پیدا نمی‌کردم؛ اجازه بدهید بارها از شما تشکر کنم؛ از طرف همۀ اعضای خانواده‌ ام تشکر می‌کنم، به خاطر بلندنظری و محبتی که محرک شما در اینکار پر زحمت بوده و این همه دردسر را تحمل کرده بودید، تا آنها را پیدا کنید)؛ پایان نقل

تاریخ بهنگام رسانی 25/05/1399هجری خورشیدی؛ 05/05/1400هجری خورشیدی؛ ا. شربیانی
Profile Image for Sean Barrs .
1,118 reviews44.8k followers
November 17, 2020
Society, with all its restrictive constructs, is one nasty piece of work.

It comes with so many silly rules, so many silly expectations. Those of social station and wealth must be seen to marry someone of the same “worth” regardless of the feelings involved; they must be seen to marry someone on their level of class structure. But what of love? What of passion? Should it be quenched because of these all-encompassing silly constructs?

Austen doesn’t think so.

Enter Darcy, a man who is royally pissed off; he has fallen in love with someone considered far beneath him, to declare his love for her is to step outside the realms of his supposed pedigree: it is a form of social death. So he is a man torn in two. At the route of things, he is a product of his society; consequently, he is affected by its values. Although he hates it all the same; thus, the long sullen silences, the seemingly moody and arrogant exchanges with Elizabeth. But it’s all the expression of a man struggling to deal with the raging tempest of emotions that have taken hold of his mind: his being.

“In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”


Indeed, Austen slowly reveals the dangers of false perception as she gradually peels away the mask of this stoic pillar of aristocracy, and underneath blossoms a misunderstood and sensitive soul. So the romance plot is born. Elizabeth eventually loses her prejudice and sees through Darcy’s false pride. Darcy loses his integrated construct of prejudice and ignores the pride of his relatives. As ever with Austen, the title of the work is suggestive of the main motifs; she’s never subtle as its all ways clear which way her razor sharp sarcasm is pointed.

So love conquers all. Austen was a strong advocate of social mobility, and often it’s based upon love in her works. But she only believes in real love. She’s not interested in fleeting moments of heat and sexual lust; she portrays true and lasting romantic attachments, relationships that are strong and real. For her, such things transcend class boundaries, wealth and intelligence. Love is love. It doesn’t matter who it is with as long as it is real; hence, Austen becomes a critique of society and its customs that prevent these relationships from being realised. She knows how stupid it is, and she loves to poke fun of her caricatures of the old stilted class of her era: the ones that resist her ideas.

Is this the best Austen?

I did really enjoy this book, and I have given it five stars, but it’s not as good as her other works. For me it lacks the moral growth of Northanger Abbey and Emma.It lacks the conciseness of Persuasion. The emphasis on the injustice of romance has made it popular, though I do strongly believe that the love in Persuasion is stronger than it is here. That endures rejection, separation, war and decades; yet, it still lingers. I love Austen, and I have loved each one of her books I’ve read so far in different ways. I hope to continue to do so. This is the fourth Austen I’ve given five stars, I can easily celebrate her as one of my favourite writers.


You can connect with me on social media via My Linktree.
Profile Image for Peter Meredith.
Author 55 books663 followers
November 24, 2011
18 chapters in... I want that to sink in for a moment... ok. 18 chapters in and NOTHING has happened. I am enjoying her writing style very much, but I also enjoy the back of an occasional cereal box so that may not mean much. We will see.
I am sitting here eating a tootsie roll, a Halloween left over, and I can't help notice the similarities between it and the novel Pride and Prejudice. First off, like P and P, the tootsie roll wasn't one of those dinky ones that you can almost swallow in a single bite so you know that I've been at this for a while and now that I finally got it down, I have to wonder why I put it into mouth to begin with. Secondly, tootsie rolls are a throwback to another age, there are far better candies out there and the 36 wrappers littering the floor will attest to this. You have to really like tootsie rolls to appreciate them. I don't.
Pride and Prejudice is the dullest most wonderfully written book that I have ever read. I read it simply to get a feel for the author's fantastic ability at arranging words, and really I mean it when I say, oh what wonderful blather.
I give the book one star.
After 62 chapters, there is nothing that happens. There is barely a story to the story, at least not one that could be remotely interesting...even to people who like romance. In the age of bodices, there is nary a one that is ripped open, let alone one that is undone with the gentle exploring fingers of a lover.
And then there is the hubbub over the book...Satirical? A witty comedy of manners? Sure, I smiled a few times at the only funny character in the book, Mr. Bennett, but overall, I read, studied the sentence structure, noticed the wall paper and waited patiently as the paint dried. Even the dramatic ending where Lizzy gets the guy, is a letdown and dull. Just to let you know, I was joking about it being in any way dramatic. Which brings me to the characters. Other than Lizzy, they are all stereotypical and lack even the most remote concept of depth. Jane is pretty and sweet from the first page to the last. The mom is overbearing, the dad aloof. Other than Darcy, no one grows or changes in a book that spans a few years and endless pages.
Normally, I use one star for books that I just can't finish and if I wasn't an aspiring author, I wouldn't have bothered to get through half the book, but since I did... and when I compare it to yawner like A Tale of Two Cities, I had to bump this one up a notch.
PS, Don't read Moby Dick either, if you know what's good for you.
Profile Image for Nilufer Ozmekik.
2,301 reviews43.9k followers
March 2, 2023
Pride and Prejudice is a novel by Jane Austen, first published in 1813. The story takes place in the fictional town of Meryton, England, in the late 18th century. The novel follows the life of Elizabeth Bennet, a witty and independent-minded young woman, as she navigates the social mores of her time and falls in love with Mr. Darcy, a wealthy and proud aristocrat.

The novel begins with the arrival of Mr. Bingley, a wealthy gentleman, to Netherfield Park, a nearby estate. He is accompanied by his sisters and his best friend, Mr. Darcy. The Bennet family, consisting of Mr. and Mrs. Bennet and their five daughters, including Elizabeth, is excited by the prospect of meeting the new neighbors. However, when Mr. Darcy snubs Elizabeth at a ball, she immediately takes a dislike to him, and he to her, due to his pride and her prejudice against him.

As the story progresses, Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy encounter each other again and again, and their initial animosity gradually turns into attraction. However, their budding romance is threatened by a number of obstacles, including the interference of Mr. Darcy's haughty aunt, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, and the machinations of Mr. Wickham, a charming but untrustworthy gentleman who has a grudge against Mr. Darcy.

Throughout the novel, Austen skillfully explores the themes of class, gender, and social hierarchy in Georgian England. She depicts a society in which a woman's value is determined by her ability to marry well and secure her family's future, and in which the upper classes maintain their status through strict adherence to social norms and codes of conduct. However, Austen also shows how individuals can challenge and subvert these norms, through their intelligence, wit, and courage.

One of the novel's strengths is its vividly drawn characters, each of whom is unique and memorable. Elizabeth is a particularly appealing heroine, with her quick wit, strong opinions, and determination to live life on her own terms. Mr. Darcy, meanwhile, is a complex and intriguing hero, whose pride and sense of superiority are gradually revealed to be a cover for his vulnerability and insecurity.

Another of Austen's strengths is her prose style, which is witty, precise, and elegant. Her use of irony and satire adds depth and nuance to the novel, allowing her to critique the social norms and expectations of her time while still entertaining her readers.

The novel also offers a fascinating glimpse into the world of Georgian England, with its elaborate rituals of courtship, marriage, and social etiquette. Austen's keen observations of the manners and customs of the time, and her wry commentary on them, provide a richly detailed portrait of a bygone era. But at the same time, her characters are universally recognizable and relatable, making the novel as relevant today as it was when it was first published.

Moreover, Pride and Prejudice has had a lasting impact on popular culture, inspiring countless adaptations, retellings, and spin-offs in various media. From film and television adaptations to stage productions, comic books, and even video games, the novel's enduring appeal has ensured its place as a cultural touchstone for generations to come.

Overall, Pride and Prejudice is a timeless masterpiece of English literature, blending insightful social commentary with engaging characters, sparkling prose, and a deep understanding of the complexities of human relationships. It remains a beloved classic, treasured by readers and scholars alike, and its influence can be seen in countless works of literature and popular culture.
Profile Image for karen.
3,988 reviews170k followers
June 27, 2018
it is official: now everyone on the planet has read this book. i was the last holdout, and being the last person (excluding those who are just being born...... now) i am sorry i didn't like it more. i knew going into it that i was not a jane austen girl; i had read two others and thought them bloodless and mercantile. but everyone said to me, "well, you haven't read pride and prejudice is why you don't like her." which i thought might be valid. but it's not. because i still don't care. this is not the greatest love story of all time. it's more like the most amiable alliance of compatible feelings that ends up in a mutually agreeable union and merging of fortunes and temperaments. i mean, really. this book needs heathcliff to come barreling in on a stallion all wet from the moors to ravish all five of these daughters and show them what a real man is all about. now there's a love story...

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Profile Image for ✨ A ✨ .
432 reviews1,792 followers
January 3, 2021
I don't think I will ever be able to properly explain my obsession with this book.

Everytime I read Pride and Prejudice (though it’s been many years since I’ve done a reread) I find something else to love about it.

Jane Austen renders a beautiful display of English country life in the early 1800s and the complexity of ordinary people — all their vanities, their flaws and their quirks.

The writing is lush and descriptive with a slow melting pace filled with subtle humour, sarcasm and witty banter.

“But people themselves alter so much, that there is something new to be observed in them for ever.”

The author created a fantastic and varied cast of characters. The absurdities of the secondary characters are what kept the plot light and fun.

Elizabeth’s whole family (excluding Jane) were a trainwreck of silly individuals.

But none are like Mr Collins. This man never fails to astound me with his silliness. The things he said were half ridiculously funny and the other half of the time I just wanted to smack him.

Characters like Miss Bingley, Mr Wickham and Lady Catherine were also infuriating at times.

Something I always find extremely entertaining in these types of classics is the underhanded savagery delivered through a facade of polite smiles and impeccable manners. It’s admirable, really 😂 .

But let’s talk about our otp.

We have Elizabeth Bennet who does not care about societal expectations. She will not marry for anything less than love and mutual respect. And would rather marry no one than marry someone she couldn’t love. For the time that this book was published, this was revolutionary as women had little power and choice.

Lizzy is strong minded and makes hasty judgments but I adore her loyalty and admire her fierce protectiveness of those she cares about. She soon learns to not judge too quickly after a few too many misunderstandings.

“There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.”

And then we have Darcy who is our socially awkward wreck who doesn’t know how to talk to people and hides his uncomfortability behind a mask of arrogance. What I loved most about his arc is that he listens, reflects on his behavior and strives to be better. He grows into someone worthy of Lizzy’s respect without the expectation of her returning his feelings.

Can y’all hear me swooning over here?

“Now be sincere; did you admire me for my impertinence?”

“For the liveliness of your mind, I did.”

The romance isn’t a wild passion, but a slow build between two people who are wrong in their first impressions of one another, then grow to admire the other.

It’s soft, it’s gentle and it’s e v e r y t h i n g.

If you’re looking to get into reading Austen, or even classics in general, I really think Pride and Prejudice is the place to start. It’s a smooth read and the story is so well known it will be easy to follow. [👈 This is me trying to be subtle when actually I want to shout at everyone to read this book 😁
fares has been sending me his reread updates and I just couldn't resist. So guess who's reading for the fifth time?!!
Profile Image for s.penkevich.
961 reviews6,803 followers
August 23, 2023
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife,’ begins Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice, an opening sentence nearly as famous as the novel itself. Austen’s comedy of manners has taken on an immortality, being a title frequently represented in art, knick knacks or decor for book lovers. I mean, this is a book that has tshirts for it as recognizable as a Pink Floyd shirt and if there were a Mt. Rushmore for white people popular classics this would be one of the first to be carved into the rock. Luckily for readers everywhere, it is a book that truly deserves such status and is eminently readable and enjoyable to this day. Pride and Prejudice is sharp, humorous and picturesquely romantic with a cast of characters that practically walk off the page, shake your hand and intermingle in your life as Austen dives into criticisms of class and conventions.

I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.

Of the many reasons Pride and Prejudice has captured hearts for generations, Austen’s heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, is the most endearing of them. A woman with a great wit and cutting dialogue, she is not without her flaws and hubris which makes her feel so authentic and approachable. The dynamic between Elizabeth and Darcy is a perfectly balanced power struggle of personal judgements as they attempt to maintain individuality under social pressures and obdurate conventions, each stradling a position of both protagonist and antagonist. And antagonize each other they do! Though in the end they come to each other with equal scars and blame. Elizabeth’s belief in her ability to judge others leads her to misjudge—a trait not unlike Emma Woodhouse of Emma who’s pride in her own wit obscured what was right before her—overlooking the blatant flaws of Wickham simply over his adversarial role towards Darcy, and coming too harshly to conclusions on Darcy before knowing him better. It should be with no surprise to learn that Austen originally intended to title the novel ‘First Impressions’.
From the very beginning— from the first moment, I may almost say— of my acquaintance with you, your manners, impressing me with the fullest belief of your arrogance, your conceit, and your selfish disdain of the feelings of others, were such as to form the groundwork of disapprobation on which succeeding events have built so immovable a dislike; and I had not known you a month before I felt that you were the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.

We see Elizabeth working on herself internally while also working on the external social factors. ‘There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others,’ Elizabeth confesses, ‘my courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.’ Her pride makes her malign others, assuming Miss darcy, for instance, to be a ‘proud, reserved, disagreeable girl’ only to find she is ‘amiable and unpretending.’ It is her intelligence I find most charming, and while she may misjudge, she has the emotional intelligence to self-diagnose and course correct.

Darcy, on the other hand, must overcome his own pride and snobbery. His disdain for those who work a trade, for instance, is part of a larger depiction of those held in high esteem of class being crude and cruel and a predominant theme in the novel. Caroline, Mr. Collins and Lady Catherine are among those who operate like an extension of class hierarchy, allowing their ideas of social position to guide their thoughts and actions and making them feel immune to criticism. Darcy and Elizabeth lowering their guard, looking at the individual instead of at their social circle/status, and coming to a mutual understanding gives the novel a tender nature, one that asks for empathy and understanding in the world and warns against holding on to judgements too tightly.

Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.

Another aspect of the novel that really resonates is just how visual it is. Austen has a gift for description and this quality has lent itself to many visually stunning film adaptations. Austen excels at embedding much of her social commentary into her depictions of settings and characters, such as Elizabeth’s first visit to Darcy’s house, with ‘high woody hills’ and a large, tall garden surrounding a the house, ‘a stream of some natural importance was swelled into greater, but without any artificial appearance.’ This is a major insight into Darcy as a character: a man without artifice and full of ‘natural beauty’ that he keeps hidden from view. His arrogance is merely his grandiose garden that obscures the him beneath the exterior. Similarly, judgements on character are often made in dialogue that focuses on aspects of dress or decor. ‘By describing a material object,Roland Barthes writes in The Language of Fashion, ‘if it is not to construct it or to use it, we are led to link the qualities of its matter to a second meaning.’ The criticisms of taste are, in this regard, a criticism of character, so when Caroline and Louisa talk at length about the mud on Elizabeth’s petticoat, we can infer they are telling us they find her herself to be wild, unkempt and unruly. It is in ways such as these that Austen can make such keen observations that don't announce themselves yet amalgamate to portray a life-like impression of a society that thrives on gossip and social interactions that are plotted like chess pieces moving across the board.

I must learn to be content with being happier than I deserve.

Austen’s Pride and Prejudice drifts at the pace of life, enrapturing you in its lush language, vibrant landscapes, dancing with you through the great halls of ornate homes and giving you an introduction to the high society of the times. This is an eternally charming novel that bites with sharp satire and humor while letting deep lessons and emotional bubble up from tender moments and brilliant insights. It is quite funny at times as well. Jane Austen is remembered for a reason, and while I still favor Emma to be my favorite, this comedy of manners is certainly a Must Read.


What do I not owe you! You taught me a lesson, hard indeed at first, but most advantageous. By you, I was properly humbled. I came to you without a doubt of my reception. You showed me how insufficient were all my pretensions to please a woman worthy of being pleased.
Profile Image for daph pink ♡ .
947 reviews2,705 followers
May 2, 2022
If you are not Elizabeth Bennet or Fitzwilliam Darcy I am not gonna marry you. Period!!
Profile Image for Tadiana ✩Night Owl☽.
1,880 reviews22.8k followers
February 21, 2019
Often imitated, never matched. Nobody can do it quite like Jane Austen.
True story: I was rummaging through and throwing away lots of my old papers and souvenirs a few weeks ago and happened to run across my 30+ year old notes from a college course where we studied Pride and Prejudice. I can't believe I still had them! Some of those P&P notes were actually pretty insightful, so in this review I've included some of the more interesting observations from my long-ago class. Hope you enjoy! (ETA: Now with bonus texts and memes)


From the first tongue-in-cheek words:
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.

However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters.
Austen brilliantly sets up the world of this novel. Marriage - however humorous the personalities and events may be - is serious business. And when the Bennets have five daughters and no sons, the seriousness of getting their girls married off increases exponentially. The desperation of the marriage hunt is really the desperation of economic survival. Mrs Bennet has that essentially right, however misguided she is in the way she goes about it.

The theme of self-discovery works hand-in-hand with the theme of marriage, and the tension between economic interest and romantic feelings. Both pride and prejudice are obstacles not just to understanding others, but to knowing oneself. Elizabeth learns about herself from several other characters along the way:

Lady Catherine:


Jane Austen shows us so many different types of marriages in P&P: those based mostly on initial physical attraction (), those based on practical, material considerations; those based on emotional feeling and compatibility (). And finally, and very gradually, we progress to seeing relationships based on reason and intelligence as well as physical and emotional attraction. The Gardiners are the model here, and the type of marriage Elizabeth wants to have for herself.


I adore Elizabeth and Darcy, working through their flaws (there's pride and prejudice aplenty on both sides!), willing to reconsider earlier judgments, tentatively working their way toward each other. And when you combine that with Austen's insight into human foibles and her sharp wit, every page is a pleasure. Sometimes I've been guilty of rushing through P&P, skimming over some chapters to get to the "good parts" faster, but I took my time this time around, reading it slower and more carefully, and was rewarded accordingly.

P&P is my favorite book of Jane Austen's ... and very possibly my favorite book of all time. It's the perfect mix of intelligence, humor and romance.

Bonus! A studious and completely objective discussion of the merits of the leading actors and actresses in the major P&P movies and TV miniseries.

First up: The Elizabeth Bennet actresses.

First, Greer Garson from the 1940 movie:
… no, for two big reasons:
1. As one website points out, “Garson's [Elizabeth Bennet] was smirking, empty-headed and flirtatious where Ehle's was smirking, strong and intelligent." Hah!
2. Hoop skirts. Hoop. Skirts. A thousand times no!
(This movie also has a third strike against it, the travesty of its rewriting of Lady Catherine de Bourgh’s personality.)

Second, Elizabeth Garvie in the 1980 BBC miniseries:
She’s not well known except among P&P fans, but she actually does a very nice job with Lizzie.

Jennifer Ehle from the 1995 miniseries:
She’s great, and she gets extra points for just how well she plays off of Colin Firth, but I have a fundamental problem with Ehle, which is that she just doesn’t match my vision of Lizzie. I just can’t entirely buy her in the part.

Keira Knightley:
Very pretty but … too pretty. And man, is she wearing a lot of makeup in some of the scenes.

Honorable mention: Aishwarya Rai in Bride and Prejudice (I don’t even care if she’s too gorgeous):

So for me, it’s Elizabeth Garvie, but kind of in a default win.

Part II: The Darcys:

We begin with Lawrence Olivier from the 1940 Hollywood movie:
... all props to Sir Lawrence, but he's not my vision of Darcy.

David Rintoul from the 1980 BBC version:
... who is a pretty good Darcy, actually; it's not his fault that the production values in this P&P version suck. (it's basically like watching a theater play that's been filmed)

On to the wonderful Colin Firth, from the seminal 1995 miniseries:
... I can't help it, he makes my heart beat faster even when he's not in a wet shirt.

Matthew Macfadyen in the 2005 movie:
Sorry to his fans, but he doesn't cut it for me. He always looks So. Worried!

So clearly for me it's Colin Firth FTW, but feel free to argue with me in the thread. :)

Honorable mentions go to Elliot Cowan in Lost in Austen and Martin Henderson in Bride and Prejudice. (Pics in the thread.)
September 17, 2022
Reviewing few masterpiece-classics is like undermining them. I was assiduously searching through my pile of treasured-classics to pick up one to re-read. Re-reading helps me to exponentially increase my thirst for books and quench it at the same time (helps me with my vanity, hope not sounding like Mr. Darcy 😊)

This novel is not only about sweet-romance between Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy, but it also helps transporting the reader to the Jane Austen("Regency Era") times, savour the culture, and brims with wit and humour. There are suggestible & obvious differences between "Victorian Era" and "Regency Era" culture settings, and I relish both!!

The Bennet couple is simply adorable. Mrs. Bennet is just like any mother of olden or modern times, eagerly seeking a suitable groom for her daughter, and she has five lovely daughters :)

Mrs. Bennet is hyperbolic. Austen has been scorned for portraying her the way she was, but I assume at all levels of society irrespective of the era, we see many Mrs. Bennet(s).

Mr. Bennet is chilled-out but maybe not detached, and is sarcastic to the core. His humour (though insulting at times) is like a whiff of liveliness!

Elizabeth is quick, sassy, intelligent and ofcourse "prejudiced"! Many girls correlate with her! She is searching for someone worth her time and is commonsensical. When she meets Mr Darcy, his pride and rudeness, makes Elizabeth to write him off instantly! Her constant rejections for his advancements build a humility in him and attraction for her.

What you give, you get back, is the chemistry we witness between them majorly!

Mr. Darcy in reality is the sweetest, considerate, standoffish (illustrates himself with pride due to fear of falling into the wrong) but is mistook. His character-presentation is totally contorted, and I strongly feel this divergence of his character-portrayal is what makes "Pride and Prejudice"!

It has the sweetest romance, culture depiction, sarcastic humor and much more. Everytime I savour it, I decipher new meanings based on what my soul thirsts for, from this bundle of cutest-love. I literally shout-out when I read through all the love-scenes between Elizabeth and Darcy, literally obsessed :D

There are tons of impactful quotes, so hand-picking few wasn’t easy, but mentioning “a few” in no-chronological order:

"I have been used to consider poetry as the food of love."

“The distance is nothing when one has a motive.”

“A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.”

"Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us."

GRs doesn't allow more than 5-stars, so virtual infinite stars for this classic ! 😊
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