Pride and Prejudice

Pride and Prejudice

by Jane Austen
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Overview

Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

Since its publication in 1813, Pride and Prejudice’s blend of humor, romance, and social satire have delighted readers of all ages. In telling the story of Mr. and Mrs. Bennett and their five daughters, Jane Austen creates a miniature of her world, where social grace and the nuances of behavior predominate in the making of a great love story.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780030514876
Publisher: Harcourt College Publishers
Publication date: 01/28/1997

About the Author

Jane Austen was born on December 16, 1775 at Steventon near Basingstoke, the seventh child of the rector of the parish. She lived with her family at Steventon until they moved to Bath when her father retired in 1801. After his death in 1805, she moved around with her mother; in 1809, they settled in Chawton, near Alton, Hampshire. Here she remained, except for a few visits to London, until in May 1817 she moved to Winchester to be near her doctor. There she died on July 18, 1817. As a girl Jane Austen wrote stories, including burlesques of popular romances. Her works were only published after much revision, four novels being published in her lifetime. These are Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Mansfield Park (1814) and Emma(1816). Two other novels, Northanger Abbey and Persuasion, were published posthumously in 1818 with a biographical notice by her brother, Henry Austen, the first formal announcement of her authorship. Persuasion was written in a race against failing health in 1815-16. She also left two earlier compositions, a short epistolary novel, Lady Susan, and an unfinished novel, The Watsons. At the time of her death, she was working on a new novel, Sanditon, a fragmentary draft of which survives.

Vivien Jones is a senior lecturer in English at the University of Leeds.

Tony Tanner was a Fellow of King’s College, Cambridge and a professor of English and American literature at the University of Cambridge. He died in December 1998.

Date of Birth:

December 16, 1775

Date of Death:

July 18, 1817

Place of Birth:

Village of Steventon in Hampshire, England

Place of Death:

Winchester, Hampshire, England

Education:

Taught at home by her father

Read an Excerpt

Chapter 1


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 as the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters.

"My dear Mr. Bennet," said his lady to him one day, "have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?"

Mr. Bennet replied that he had not.

"But it is," returned she; "for Mrs. Long has just been here, and she told me all about it."

Mr. Bennet made no answer.

"Do not you want to know who has taken it?" cried his wife impatiently.

"You want to tell me, and I have no objection to hearing it."

This was invitation enough.

"Why, my dear, you must know, Mrs. Long says that Netherfield is taken by a young man of large fortune from the north of England; that he came down on Monday in a chaise and four to see the place, and was so much delighted with it that he agreed with Mr. Morris immediately; that he is to take possession before Michaelmas, and some of his servants are to be in the house by the end of next week."

"What is his name?"

"Bingley."

"Is he married or single?"

"Oh! single, my dear, to be sure! A single man of large fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine thing for our girls!"

"How so? how can it affect them?"

"My dear Mr. Bennet," replied his wife, "how can you be so tiresome! You must know that I am thinking of his marrying one of them."

"Is that his design in settling here?"

"Design! Nonsense, how can you talk so! But it is very likely that he may fall in love with one of them, and therefore you must visit him as soon as he comes."

"I see no occasion for that. You and the girls may go, or you may send them by themselves, which perhaps will be still better, for as you are as handsome as any of them, Mr. Bingley might like you the best of the party."

"My dear, you flatter me. I certainly have had my share of beauty, but I do not pretend to be anything extraordinary now. When a woman has five grown up daughters, she ought to give over thinking of her own beauty."

"In such cases, a woman has not often much beauty to think of."

"But, my dear, you must indeed go and see Mr. Bingley when he comes into the neighbourhood."

"It is more than I engage for, I assure you."

"But consider your daughters. Only think what an establishment it would be for one of them. Sir William and Lady Lucas are determined to go, merely on that account, for in general you know they visit no newcomers. Indeed you must go, for it will be impossible for us to visit him if you do not."

"You are over-scrupulous surely. I dare say Mr. Bingley will be very glad to see you; and I will send a few lines by you to assure him of my hearty consent to his marrying whichever he chooses of the girls; though I must throw in a good word for my little Lizzy."

"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."

"They have none of them much to recommend them," replied he; "they are all silly and ignorant like other girls; but Lizzy has something more of quickness than her sisters."

"Mr. Bennet, how can you abuse your own children in such a way? You take delight in vexing me. You have no compassion on my poor nerves. "

"You mistake me, my dear. I have a high respect for your nerves. They are my old friends. I have heard you mention them with consideration these twenty years at least."

"Ah! you do not know what I suffer."

"But I hope you will get over it, and live to see many young men of four thousand a year come into the neighbourhood."

"It will be no use to us, if twenty such should come since you will not visit them."

"Depend upon it, my dear, that when there are twenty, I will visit them all."

Mr. Bennet was so odd a mixture of quick parts, sarcastic humour, reserve, and caprice, that the experience of three and twenty years had been insufficient to make his wife understand his character. Her 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.

Table of Contents

General Editor's preface     ix
Acknowledgements     xiii
Chronology     xv
Introduction     xxii
Note on the text     lxxix
Pride and Prejudice     1
Corrections and emendations to 1813 text     432
Phomas Egerton and the publication history     437
Legal and military background     441
Pemberley and its models     452
Note on the second and third editions of Pride and Prejudice     456
Abbreviations     459
Explanatory notes     461

What People are Saying About This

From the Publisher

"The wit of Jane Austen has for partner the perfection of her taste."
—Virginia Woolf

Virgina Woolf

"The wit of Jane Austen has for Parchner the perfection of her taste.

Reading Group Guide

INTRODUCTION

It is now almost exactly two centuries since the first two of Jane Austen's six completed novels - Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice - were published, and for much of that time writers and critics have passionately disagreed about the true caliber of her work. Austen's books received a few respectful reviews and lively attention from the reading public during her lifetime, but it wasn't until nearly thirty years after her death that some critics began to recognize her enduring artistic accomplishment--and others to debate it.

In 1843, the historian Thomas Macaulay called Austen the writer to "have approached nearest to the manner of the great master" Shakespeare; Charlotte Brontë felt, on the contrary, that "the Passions are perfectly unknown to her.... Jane Austen was a complete and most sensible lady, but a very incomplete, and rather insensible (not senseless) woman." Anthony Trollope made up his mind as a young man that "Pride and Prejudice was the best novel in the language," while Mark Twain claimed to feel an "animal repugnance" for Austen's writing.

Austen herself would probably not have disagreed with many of her detractors' objections. She acknowledged that her themes and concerns were limited; she described them as "human nature in the midland counties." "Three or four families in a country village is the very thing to work on," she wrote in a letter to her niece; and in another, now famous letter to her brother Edward, she described her art as "the little bit (two inches wide) of ivory on which I work with so fine a brush, as to produce little effect, after much labour."

It is true that great historical events and political concerns appear only obliquely, if at all, in the background of Austen's stories; that she deals with the spiritual condition of the human soul only insofar as it manifests itself in her characters' manners and taste in spouses; that the intellectual issues of her day appear in her novels primarily as a vehicle for revealing character and spoofing fashion. Even Austen's great early champion, the critic G. H. Lewes, had to admit the truth of Charlotte Brontë's objection that Austen's style lacked poetry, and that her "exquisite" work would appeal only to readers who didn't require "strong lights and shadows." But in spite of these limitations, the particular genius and lasting appeal of Austen's writing has only become clearer and more certain as the decades pass and literary fashions come and go.

What is Austen's particular genius? And what might account for the renaissance of popular interest in her work today--one reflected in the recently acclaimed television and feature film productions of Sense and Sensibility (with an Oscar-winning screenplay by Emma Thompson), Pride and Prejudice (an A&E miniseries), the art house hit Persuasion, and the upcoming release of Emma, as well as the Emma-inspired Clueless, now atop video rental charts?

"Of all great writers," Virginia Woolf said, "she is the most difficult to catch in the act of greatness." But perhaps Austen herself gave us a clue to the standards for greatness she set herself, and a way to judge her achievement, when in Northanger Abbey she has a character say: "'Oh! it is only a novel!' or, in short, only some work in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusion of wit and humour are to be conveyed to the world in the best chosen language."

Austen's delightful wit is certainly one of the great pleasures of her work. As to "the best chosen language," while her writing conveys none of the lyricism of the Romantics (like Brontë) who would succeed her, it is full of intelligence and precisely crafted to convey its often subtle meaning. But Austen's strongest suit is her thorough knowledge and happy delineation of human nature. We can still, despite the vast differences between her society and our own, recognize ourselves in the ways her characters think and behave. We all know people as cleverly manipulative and outwardly affectionate as Lucy Steele or Miss Bingley; as self-involved as Fanny Dashwood or Lady Catherine de Bourgh; and as charming but as lacking in scruples as John Willoughby or Colonel Wickham. We are in turns impulsive and hyper-responsible like Marianne and Elinor Dashwood; conceal ourselves with arrogance like Mr. Darcy; assume we understand more than we do like Elizabeth Bennet; and revel in gossip, like Mrs. Jennings. And while the great events and philosophical movements of history play themselves out around us, it is our own nature and actions, and the nature and actions of the people around us, that most influence our lives.

In her own day, Austen's work signified a break with the Gothic and sentimental novels that had long been fashionable, in which heroines were always virtuous, romance was always sentimentalized, and unlikely but convenient coincidences and acts of God always occurred to bring about the dramatic climax. Instead Austen represented the ordinary world of men and women as it--sometimes mundanely--was, a place where love and romance were constrained by economics and human imperfection; where women had distinct and often sparkling personalities; where characters were never simply good or evil but more complicated amalgams, reflecting both their own moral nature and the virtues and failings of the families and society that shaped them.

In these ways, Austen seems very much in tune with today's sensibilities. We love her strong, unpretentious heroines ("Pictures of perfection as you know make me sick & wicked," Austen said of them), who think for themselves and say what they mean when appropriate and don't take themselves too seriously. They are not, in today's parlance, victims. We are as interested as ever in Austen's favorite subjects of love and marriage, while also identifying with her steadfast refusal to romanticize romance; with her acknowledgment that money, class, and what other people think matter in the real world; that marriage does not result in a happy ending for everyone; and that it is dangerous to let passion blind us to reality. Living amidst the cultural fallout from the self-absorbed, sensibility-prone 1960s, we appreciate Austen's emphasis on reason, moderation, fidelity, and consideration for others.

Austen wrote her books at the dawn of the nineteenth century, when vast social changes were already encroaching on the way of life she so loved and rendered with such exquisite artistry. We read her books today on the cusp of a new century, with an unfathomable world creeping up on us, too--one globally interconnected, technologically complex, economically uncertain. Perhaps we find on Austen's rural estates and in her charming, insular society the same peace and pleasure she found there; and an analogue for the simpler, more circumscribed world of our own childhoods, itself passing quickly away into history.

The time in which Jane Austen wrote her novels was a period of great stability just about to give way to a time of unimagined changes. At that time most of England's population (some thirteen million) were involved in rural and agricultural work: yet within another twenty years, the majority of Englishmen became urban dwellers involved with industry, and the great railway age had begun. Throughout the early years of the century the cities were growing at a great rate; the network of canals was completed, the main roads were being remade. Regency London, in particular, boomed and became, among other things, a great centre of fashion. On the other hand, England in the first decade of the nineteenth century was still predominantly a land of country towns and villages, a land of rural routines which were scarcely touched by the seven campaigns of the Peninsular War against Napoleon.

But if Austen's age was still predominantly one of rural quiet, it was also the age of the French Revolution, the War of American Independence, the start of the Industrial Revolution, and the first generation of the Romantic poets; and Jane Austen was certainly not unaware of what was going on in the world around her. She had two brothers in the Royal Navy and a cousin whose husband was guillotined in the Terror. And although her favourite prose writer was Dr. Samuel Johnson, she clearly knew the works of writers like Goethe, Worsdworth, Scott, Byron, Southey, Godwin and other, very definitely nineteenth-century, authors.

If Jane Austen seems to have lived a life of placid rural seclusion in north Hampshire, she was at the same time very aware of a whole range of new energies and impulses, new ideas and powers, which were changing or about to change England--and indeed the whole western world--with a violence, a suddenness, and a heedlessness, which would soon make Jane Austen's world seem as remote as the Elizabethan Age. It is well to remember that in the early years of the century, when Thomas Arnold saw his first train tearing through the Rugby countryside he said: "Feudality is gone forever." So close was it possible then to feel to the immemorial, static feudal way of life; so quickly was that way of life to vanish as the modern world laboured to be born.

Adapted from the Introduction to the Penguin Classics edition of Mansfield Park.

ABOUT THE TITLE

Pride and Prejudice has always been, since its publication in 1813, Austen's most popular novel. The story of a sparkling, irrepressible heroine, Elizabeth Bennet, the behavior of whose family leaves much to be desired, and Mr. Darcy, a very rich and seemingly rude young man who initially finds Elizabeth "tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me," is, in the words of the Penguin Classics edition editor Tony Tanner, a novel about how a man changes his manners and a woman changes her mind. Through the ages, its chief delights for readers have been its flawed but charming heroine ("I think [Elizabeth] as delightful a creature as ever appeared in print," Austen herself wrote to her sister, Cassandra); its humorous treatment of a serious subject; brilliant and witty dialogue laced with irony; a cast of humorous minor characters; and Austen's nearly magical development of a complex but believable love relationship between two complex people.

Critics have pointed to many ways in which Pride and Prejudice represents Austen's development and greater mastery of technique and artistry over Sense and Sensibility; perhaps the chief being that the conflict of the story is of the central characters' own making; and that a lively narrator more often appears to present material and to offer comment.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Jane Austen, seventh of the eight children of Reverend George and Cassandra Leigh Austen, was born on December 16, 1775, in the small village of Steventon in Hampshire, England. Her childhood was happy: her home was full of books and many friends and her parents encouraged both their children's intellectual interests and their passion for producing and performing in amateur theatricals. Austen's closest relationship, one that would endure throughout her life, was with her beloved only sister, Cassandra.

From about the time she was twelve years old, Austen began writing spirited parodies of the popular Gothic and sentimental fiction of the day for the amusement of her family. Chock-full of stock characters, vapid and virtuous heroines, and improbable coincidences, these early works reveal in nascent form many of her literary gifts: particularly her ironic sensibility, wit, and gift for comedy. Attempts at more sustained, serious works began around 1794 with a novel in letters - a popular form at the time - called Lady Susan, and in the years immediately following with two more epistolary novels - one called Elinor and Marianne, the other First Impressions - that would evolve into Sense and Sensibility and Pride and Prejudice. Lady Susan, later revised and entitled Northanger Abbey, also was begun in that period.

From 1799 to 1809, little is known of Austen's life or literary endeavors, other than that upon her father's retirement she moved unhappily from her beloved home in Steventon to Bath; that he died a few years thereafter and she moved to Southampton; and that she began, but did not complete, a novel called The Watsons. A move back to the country in 1808 - to a cottage on one of her brother's properties in Chawton - seems to have revived her interest in writing.

Her revised version of Elinor and Marianne - Sense and Sensibility - was published, like all the work which appeared in print in her lifetime, anonymously, in 1811; and between the time Pride and Prejudice was accepted for publication and the time it actually appeared, she wrote Mansfield Park. Emma appeared in 1816 and was reviewed favorably by the most popular novelist of the day, Sir Walter Scott, who said:

The author's knowledge of the world, and the peculiar tact with which she presents characters that the reader cannot fail to recognize, reminds us something of the merits of the Flemish school of painting. The subjects are not often elegant, and certainly never grand; but they are finished up to nature, and with a precision which delights the reader.

Scott also insightfully pointed out Emma's significance in representing the emergence of a new kind of novel, one concerned with the texture of ordinary life.

Though all her novels were concerned with courtship, love, and marriage, Austen never married. There is some evidence that she had several flirtations with eligible men in her early twenties, and speculation that in 1802 she agreed to marry the heir of a Hampshire family but then changed her mind. Austen rigorously guarded her privacy, and after her death, her family censored and destroyed many of her letters. Little is known of her personal experience or her favorite subjects. However, Austen's reputation as a "dowdy bluestocking," as literary critic Ronald Blythe points out, is far from accurate: "she loved balls, cards, wine, music, country walks, conversation, children, and bad as well as excellent novels."

In 1816, as she worked to complete her novel Persuasion, Austen's health began to fail. She continued to work, preparing Northanger Abbey for publication, and began a light-hearted, satirical work called Sanditon which she never finished. She died at the age of forty-two on July 18, 1817, in the arms of her beloved sister, Cassandra, of what historians now believe to have been Addison's disease.

The identity of "A Lady" who wrote the popular novels was known in her lifetime only to her family and a few elite readers, among them the Prince Regent, who invited Austen to visit his library and "permitted" her to dedicate Emma to him (unaware, no doubt, that she loathed him). But Austen deliberately avoided literary circles; in Ronald Blythe's words, "literature, not the literary life, was always her intention." It was not until the December following her death, when Northanger Abbey and Persuasion were published, that "a biographical notice of the author" by Austen's brother Henry appeared in the books, revealing to the reading public for the first time the name of Jane Austen.

DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

  1. Charlotte Brontë did not appreciate Pride and Prejudice. She felt that Jane Austen didn't write about her characters' hearts. Do you think Brontë's criticism is accurate? Is Austen's treatment of her characters' feelings superficial? Do they feel and/or express deep emotion?
  2. An earlier version of Pride and Prejudice was entitled First Impressions. What role do first impressions play in the story? In which cases do first impressions turn out to be inaccurate, in which cases correct?
  3. After Jane becomes engaged to Bingley, she says she wishes Elizabeth could be as happy as she is. Elizabeth replies, "If you were to give me forty such men, I never could be so happy as you. Till I have your disposition, your goodness, I never can have your happiness." Do you think Elizabeth's statement is true? Is it better to be good, to think the best of people, and be happy? Or is it better to see the world accurately, and feel less happiness?
  4. Mr. Bennet's honesty and wry humor make him one of the most appealing characters in the book. Yet, as the story unfolds, it becomes clear that he has failed as a father. In what ways does Mr. Bennet let his children down? How does his action, or inaction, affect the behavior of his daughters? His wife? The course of the story?
  5. Charlotte doesn't marry Mr. Collins for love. Why does she marry him? Are her reasons valid? Are they fair to Mr. Collins? Do you think marrying for similar reasons is appropriate today?
  6. Both Elizabeth and Darcy undergo transformations over the course of the book. How does each change and how is the transformation brought about? Could Elizabeth's transformation have happened without Darcy's? Or vice versa?
  7. Mrs. Bennet, Mr. Collins, and Lady Catherine de Bourgh are famously comic characters. What makes them so funny? How does Elizabeth's perception of them affect your trust in Elizabeth's views of other people in the book, particularly of Wickham and Darcy?
  8. For most of the book, pride prevents Darcy from having what he most desires. Why is he so proud? How is his pride displayed? Is Elizabeth proud? Which characters are not proud? Are they better off?
  9. Editor Tony Tanner points out in the Notes to the Penguin Classics edition that Austen did not mention topical events nor use precise descriptions of actual places in Pride and Prejudice, so that the larger historical events of the time did not detract attention from the private drama of her characters. "This perhaps contributes to the element of timelessness in the novel," he concludes, "even though it unmistakably reflects a certain kind of society at a certain historical moment." In what ways are the themes and concerns of Pride and Prejudice timeless? In what ways are they particular to the times in which Austen wrote the book?

RELATED TITLES

Northanger Abbey

Edited with an Introduction by Marilyn Butler

This lighthearted romance, generally agreed to be Austen's earliest major novel, though it was not published until after her death, is also a high-spirited burlesque of the sentimental and Gothic novels of her day. When the charmingly imperfect heroine, Catherine Morland, visits Northanger Abbey, she meets all the trappings of Gothic horror, and imagines the worst. Fortunately, she has at hand her own fundamental good sense and irresistible but unsentimental hero, Henry Tilney. Real disaster does eventually strike, but doesn't spoil for too long the happy atmosphere of this delightful novel.

Mansfield Park

Edited with an Introduction by Tony Tanner

More varied in scene and conceived on a bigger scale than Austen's earlier books, Mansfield Park (1814) can be seen as an image of quiet resistance at the start of what was to be the most convulsive century of change in English history. In telling the story of Fanny Price, the quiet and sensitive daughter of a lower-middle-class Portsmouth family who is brought up in - and after much suffering eventually becomes mistress of - elegant Mansfield Park, Austen draws on her usual cool irony and psychological insight while also portraying a less immediately winning heroine in a more complex light.

Emma

Edited with an Introduction by Ronald Blythe

Many writers and critics consider Emma (1816), the last of Austen's novels published in her lifetime, the climax of her genius. Dominating the novel is the character of Emma Woodhouse - vital, interesting, complex, and predisposed to playing power games with other people's emotions. Austen called her a heroine "no one but myself would like," but she endures as one of Austen's immortal creations. Charting how Emma's disastrous foray as a matchmaker precipitates a crisis in the small provincial world of Highbury, and in her own heart, this novel of self-deceit and self-discovery sparkles with intelligence, wit, and irony.

Persuasion

Edited with an Introduction by D.W. Harding

Anne Elliot and Captain Wentworth had met and separated years before. Their reunion forces a recognition of the false values that drove them apart. The characters who embody those values are the subjects of some of the most withering satire that Austen ever wrote. Like its predecessors, Persuasion (published after her death in 1818) is a tale of love and marriage, told with Austen's distinctive irony and insight. But the heroine - like the author - is more mature; the tone of the writing more somber.

Also included in this edition is the pioneering biography of Austen written fifty years after her death by her nephew, J. E. Austen-Leigh, which outlines the essential facts of Austen's life while also reflecting the Victorian era's limited comprehension of her achievements.

Lady Susan/The Watsons/Sanditon

Edited with an Introduction by Margaret Drabble

These three works - one novel unpublished in her lifetime and two unfinished fragments - reveal Austen's development as a great artist. Lady Susan is a sparkling melodrama, written in epistolary form, featuring a beautiful, intelligent, and wicked heroine. The Watsons, probably written when Austen resided unhappily in Bath and abandoned after her father's death, is a tantalizing fragment centering on the marital prospects of the Watson sisters in a small provincial town. Sanditon, Austen's last fiction, reflects her growing concern with the new speculative consumer society and foreshadows the great social upheavals of the Industrial Revolution.

Also available from Penguin Classics:

The Juvenilia of Jane Austen and Charlotte Brontë
Jane Austen and Charlotte Brontë
Edited by Frances Beer

This collection provides the opportunity to discover the first examples of Austen's neoclassical elegance and Brontë's mastery of the romantic spirit.

Available on audiocassette from Penguin Audiobooks:

Emma
Persuasion
Pride and Prejudice
Sense and Sensibility
Boxed Set: Sense and Sensibility, Persuasion, and Pride and Prejudice

Penguin Classics wishes to thank and credit the following writers and books for information used in creating this Penguin Classics Guide:

Joseph Duffy, "Criticism 1814-70"; Brian Southam, "Criticism 1870-1940" and "Janeites and Anti-Janeites"; A. Walton Litz, "Criticism 1939-83"; J. David Grey, "Life of Jane Austen"; all in The Jane Austen Companion, J. David Grey, Managing Editor; Macmillan Publishing Company, New York, 1986.

Lloyd W. Brown, "The Business of Marrying and Mothering," and Norman Page, "The Great Tradition Revisited," in Jane Austen's Achievement, edited by Juliet McMaster, Harper & Row Publishers, Inc., Barnes & Noble Import Division, New York, 1976.

W. A. Craik, Jane Austen: The Six Novels, Barnes & Noble, Inc., New York, 1965.

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Pride and Prejudice 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 1891 reviews.
Alyssa2010 More than 1 year ago
I recently read Pride and Prejudice to relax, and I can honestly say that it is one of the best novels I have ever read. The characters of Elizabeth and Mr. Darcy are well developed and enthralling. Elizabeth is the classic stubborn and brazen heroine; a no nonsense kind of girl whose personality from their first meeting rubs Mr. Darcy the wrong way. Through several different personal struggles we see these characters grow as individuals, as well as closer to each other. It is a must read for all the hopeless romantics out there.
Guest More than 1 year ago
'It is a truth universally acknowledged that any man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of...' a copy of Pride and Prejudice. I had felt guilty that I had watched many film versions of the book before actually reading it. That being said, I grabbed a copy at Barnes and Noble and ran home to read. I'll admit that the language of Jane Austen's day can be a bit confusing at first, but after the first three chapters, I was transported to eighteenth century England, sipping tea, and watching Elizabeth bedazzle Fitzwilliam while dancing at the Netherfield ball. This is a definite must-read for any, true booklover. Bon appetit!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is a scan of the 1894 George Allen edition. There are a lot of problems with the scanner software not being able to recognize letters, or maybe the document was just dirty, but you have to do a lot of guessing as to the words. A difficult read and not for those who have not read Pride and Prejudice before this.
Guest More than 1 year ago
I saw the movie before I read the book. Actually, it was the movie that made me want to read the book. I'm a bit of a bookworm, and I started reading this at the end of my sophomore year (high school). I finished reading it during the summer, and I loved it. Sure, it was slow during some parts, but other than that, it was fantastic. Jane Austen was a fantastic author. I'm reading Sense and Sensibility next.
Novellete More than 1 year ago
It is simply the greatest book ever. What else can I say?
Wintergreen More than 1 year ago
Pride & Prejudice was an unexpected jewel. The novel is so much more than you would expect.I loved this book the first time I read it, and then watched the mini series with Colin Firth as Mr. Darcy. I reread the book and I am sure that I will read it many times again. Austin is brilliant!
krazykristin2010 More than 1 year ago
I read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, and I thought it was a great book. It was brilliantly and beautifully written. Some of the characters were based upon people that Jane Austen¿s own life. The setting is in the 18th century and old English style writing and is historical fiction. Pride and Prejudice is a story about a poor family with five girls who are still not yet married. Mrs. Bennet very much wants her daughters to get married. When two handsome rich men go to their town there are balls and love is everywhere. Elizabeth Bennet is the second eldest girl and she is a happy and proud girl who loves to read books. Jane Bennet is the eldest of the girls and is shy and has a big heart. Mr. Darcy is a handsome rich man and is very stubborn and disagreeable. Mr. Bingley is Mr. Darcy¿s best friend and he is a complete opposite of him. He is sweet and respectful man and has a bid heart. This book is for young adults and adults. I recommend this book to you if you liked The Note Book. Pride and Prejudice was published in 1894, and has 371 pages. Do not just rush through this book; take your time to really think about the characters and the themes of love class and marriage. If you are looking for a great love story Pride and Prejudice is a great book to read.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I love this book, but the formatting on this edition is terrible - missing entire pages, skips paragraphs and is missing words. Would not recommend
flashlight More than 1 year ago
I've been a bookworm since 5th grade (I am now 40) and this is the best book of all time! Especially if you like romance. Jane Austen is probably the most gifted writer of all time. Everyone should read this classic love story. It deals with so many issues like first impressions, lust vs. real love, integrity, sacrifice, I could go on and on. The story centers around Elizabeth, a beautiful, witty, and very opinionated young lady, and Mr. Darcy, a handsome, rich, reserved and very prideful man. You will fall in love with these characters from the beginning! But will they fall in love with each other? Jane Austen is a master story teller and her writing style is truly elegant and beautiful. A must read for everyone!
Guest More than 1 year ago
Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, is a very sophisticated book. It is a great love story between Elizabeth Bennett and Mr. Darcy. It is very well written and definitely a classic. It was personally hard for me to get into, as it really never grabbed my attention with an intricate plot. Well, not one that I could understand. Mrs. Bennett is a HILLARIOUS character. Very bossy and always opinionated. While her husband is the complete opposite. Jane Bennett, Elizabeth's sister, is a beautiful young woman, and most commonly chosen as the favorite through out the book. Her to-become husband Mr. Bingly is also a very sweet man. Kitty and Lydia, two more sisters, could be the most annoying characters out of any book. Ever. But I do see where they could be considered necessary for the book. It's a good book to read if you enjoy more old time, literature writing styles.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book of all time. I've read it about five times and i've never lost interest. It's a great, unique love story. And the way Jane Austen wrote it makes it even more intriguing. The way she starts off Elizabeth and Darcy's relationship was so different from other novels of the time period, it makes it stand out from other 18th century novels. Read it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Dont let all those rude coments about how they think that the book is horrible and is only for adults i am 11 seen the movie about a 100 times and now i am reading the book!
Austen-Fan More than 1 year ago
This was an amazing book!! It is one of my favorites. It is about a girl named Elizabeth Bennet who takes PRIDE in her good judgments. She judges a rich, handsome, rude, new-to-town guy named Mr.(Fitzwilliam) Darcy. (Mr. Darcy has alot of PRIDE which is what I believe to be the main reason for the pride part of the title.) Through Elizabeth's PREJUDICE, she misjudges Darcy and Darcy writes all of these truths in a letter. She reads it and finds out about everything she thought. Darcy changes his attitude by becoming kind and caring. He ends up saving Elizabeth's family from disgrase and Elizabeth falls in love with Darcy. (Darcy had loved Elizabeth for at least months now and has already proposed to her once, she declined.) Darcy proposes a secound time and Elizabeth accepts. This was a really great book and it was alot better than i thought it would be. My only suggestions is to either keep notes of the characters or use an online character chart and to keep some form of a dictionary around because there are alot of uncommon words. Hope this was usefull!!!!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If a person dies without reading this book...they have missed one of the greatest pleasures that the world could give them! This book is undoubtedly my most favorite book and I would recommend it to the entire world! The spirited Lizzy, smoldering Mr. Darcy along with all the side characters are likely to keep you entertained for days together even after you have finished!
Homa More than 1 year ago
This book is a novel detailing the life and trials of a young girl and family. She is trying to find love and happiness in a world where people marry for money and status. This woman endures many trials and errors dealing with the dark sides of people and also the surprising good that is hard to find in some individuals. The book is heartwarming and carefully written, a difficult read for some, but well worth it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This review is not about the story, but the quality of the ebook. It's just short of unreadable! Random symbols....bits and pieces of letters spaced and strewn. I'll be looking for a better copy.... disapointing.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This particular version jumped chapters in the middle of sentences, very confusing and incomplete
Neversweet0320 More than 1 year ago
Format is impossible to read. Page 3 skips to the beginning of Chapter 10 and then to Chapter 6 within the next 2 or 3 pages. Disappointed, looked forward to this...
xoxkim2000xox More than 1 year ago
There aren't words to express how ardently I love this novel. My first reading of this novel came when I was in high school. Upon that first reading it instantly became my favorite novel and still is today. This novel has lead me to develop a love for so many other novels, through Pride and Prejudice fan fiction sequels. The story of Lizzie and Darcy is one for the ages. Their story is timeless because they're relatable. When I first read Pride and Prejudice I instantly wanted to find my own Mr. Darcy. Pride and Prejudice is the story of how Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy come to be. Their story is plagued with conflict, misunderstanding, and yes you guessed it pride and prejudice. Through multiple circumstances they come to realize their love for each other. After a disastrous first proposal the two are thrust apart and back to their own separate lives. They unintentionally run into each other a few months later and somehow something has changed between them. No more pride, no more prejudice, no more conflict. They've been changed. From there you have to read the rest of the novel. It's inlaid with many other characters who you laugh with/at and some that your heart will break with. I heartily encourage everyone to read this novel at least once in their life. You'll be so thankful you did.
X-Cotton More than 1 year ago
Jane Austen has managed to create a scathing commentary on marriage out of what could have been just another romantic novel. In "Pride and Prejudice" Austen has exposed, over and over again, the obsession with financial security that gripped nineteenth century women, due to the in-equality of the social status between men and women. The novel holds this property oriented society up to the light of day, and shows it to be shallow, and totally oblivious to the more important elements of relationships between a man, and a woman. Elements such as compatability, and true love, without these crucial items a marriage cannot hope to last the test of time. Austen has obviously given these things great consideration, after all, she never married and died a single woman, in a time when women were not considered whole, unless they married and had children. Personally I applaud her choice to remain single untill she had found the right man, I'm just sorry that it appears that she never found him.
shelbynicole More than 1 year ago
Pride and Prejudice is truly a book everyone should read at least once in their life. Jane Austens classic tale is and will be emulated throughout movies and other novels for a very long time. It would be easier for people to understand these copycats if they had read the original. It is a great book that proves if you stay true to yourself instead of worring about what others think of you you will be just fine.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I had recently watched the pride and predijce mini series with my family and fell in love with the characters and story. I bought this book as soon as I could. At first I was a bit nervous because I am only a freshman in hs and was afraid I would not understand what was going on. It was hard in the beginning but after the first chapter I was transported.to their time period.he pace is very slow and is mostly conversations, which I don't mind at all. I just have trouble reading it for long periods of time. I usually do not read romance novels so I was surprised by how much I loved this book! The chatacters are amazing and so real. I know each time I read it I will love it more and more.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
It has WAY to many screw-ups in this book to make any sense. Do yourself the favor and DO NOT GET THE FREE VERSION!!!!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I just finished this book today, and i must say it was extrodinary! Fantastic! I loved it every time i read. I became emersed into the story. When i had finished, id felt content, but id also felt as if id lost a good friend. I just fell in love with the [likeable] characters, and i swooned over the love stories of Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet, and Mr. Bingley and Jane Bennet. There really isnt much to dislike, though it is a bit hard to understand if you arent familiar with the word choice of the 18th-century. Jane Austen is a brilliant writer with a keen sense of love! I must read her other books!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is great. Pride and predjudice is about Elizabeth Bennet, a girl in 18th century England (or 19th), who finds the person she loves in a seemingly unlikely man. I enjoyied the wide veriety of characters who each played their roles in getting the story moving forward at a reasonable pace. Before you read Pride and Predjudice be aware that it is written to the time period it takes place in and if you do not understand the language or the story line you will most likely hate it. I would recomend this book to anyone who is interested in the way of life in late 18th century England or has heard of it and is on the fence about reading it. It is a classic to add to any library.