All posts by Jennifer Abella

About Jennifer Abella

Jennifer Abella is a TV/movie/pop culture/knitting/sewing/Jane Austen geek. Oh, and a total Anglophile. Follow her on Twitter: @nextjen.

Six swoon-worthy sentences in ‘Pride and Prejudice’

Tomorrow’s Valentine’s Day, so we’re celebrating with six swoony lines by and about Mr. Darcy from “Pride and Prejudice.” What sentences set your heart aflutter? Let us know!

You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.”

Oh, Mr. Darcy. You were never going to get a “yes” from Elizabeth at this point in the novel, especially not after she found out about you nipping Bingley and Jane’s romance in the bud. But who wouldn’t want to hear someone say this? Well, this and not the your-family-is-terrible bit.

Darcy had never been so bewitched by any woman as he was by her.


He just keeps falling for her despite of himself.

She attracted him more than he liked.

Yup, he’s got it bad.

“I have been meditating on the very great pleasure which a pair of fine eyes in the face of a pretty woman can bestow.”

That fact that he’d mention Lizzy’s eyes to Caroline (of all people) must say something about the burgeoning affection he feels. But Caroline isn’t about to let him get away without a fight, beginning with snide remarks about Lizzy’s family.

“I can admire you much better as I sit by the fire.”

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When Caroline asks Lizzy to take a turn about the room, she also invites Darcy to join them. His reply: “You either choose this method of passing the evening because you are in each other’s confidence, and have secret affairs to discuss, or because you are conscious that your figures appear to the greatest advantage in walking; if the first, I would be completely in your way, and if the second, I can admire you much better as I sit by the fire.” Compared with the understated language in the rest of the novel, the last line of Darcy’s reply is practically flirty.

“I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look, or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.”

This admission to Lizzy has her heart — and ours.

Happy Valentine’s Day from the Jane Austen Summer Program! Want to celebrate 206 years of “Pride and Prejudice”? Register for our program (“Pride and Prejudice and Its Afterlives”) today!


How you can donate to our silent auction

Help us help teachers by donating new or gently used items to our silent auction, which benefits our scholarship fund.

Donations can either be shipped to Terri O’Quin [contact: toquin (at) mindspring (dot) com for details] or brought to the meeting. If items are brought to the meeting, please provide photos and/or detailed descriptions in advance.

Mr. Collins’ and Mr. Darcy’s biggest proposal mistakes? Knot — a site for all things wedding — has a list of “5 Big Marriage Proposal Mistakes.” We all know Mr. Collins and Mr. Darcy aren’t the best at proposals. Let’s see which of these mistakes they actually made (and, no, this list doesn’t not include “Disparaging the woman’s family.”)

Mistake: Asking Empty-Handed

Neither have a ring on hand when they ask for Lizzy’s, well, hand.

Mistake: Jumping the Gun

Both make the same error here: Thinking that OF COURSE Lizzy would say yes: Mr. Collins, because she won’t get a better offer. Mr. Darcy, because who would say no to him?

Mistake: Proposing in Front of an Audience

Mr. Collins: Mrs. Bennet is dawdling just outside the room during his audience with Lizzy, so you can be sure she is listening.

Mr. Darcy: Unless the servants have their ears to the door, he and Lizzy are alone. Mr. Collins and Charlotte were at Rosings.

Mistake: Blabbing About the Plan

Mr. Collins: He makes his intentions pretty clear when he asks Mrs. Bennet for a private word with Lizzy. He’s not subtle, that Mr. Collins.

Mr. Darcy: He doesn’t seem like one to confide in people, so he probably hasn’t told anyone he’s about the pop the question.

Mistake: Not Waiting for the Right Moment

Mr. Collins: Let’s face it: There would never be a right moment for Mr. Collins to propose to Lizzy.

Mr. Darcy: Maybe he didn’t wait for the right moment the first time around — after Fitzwilliam told Lizzy about Darcy’s machinations to put some distance between Bingley and Jane was the worst time for Darcy to act. But at least his second attempt is better timed.