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Chapter 4

  • When Jane and Elizabeth were alone, the former, who had been cautious in he_raise of Mr. Bingley before, expressed to her sister just how very much sh_dmired him.
  • "He is just what a young man ought to be," said she, "sensible, good-humoured,
  • lively; and I never saw such happy manners!—so much ease, with such perfec_ood breeding!"
  • "He is also handsome," replied Elizabeth, "which a young man ought likewise t_e, if he possibly can. His character is thereby complete."
  • "I was very much flattered by his asking me to dance a second time. I did no_xpect such a compliment."
  • "Did not you? I did for you. But that is one great difference between us.
  • Compliments always take  _you_  by surprise, and  _me_ never. What could b_ore natural than his asking you again? He could not help seeing that you wer_bout five times as pretty as every other woman in the room. No thanks to hi_allantry for that. Well, he certainly is very agreeable, and I give you leav_o like him. You have liked many a stupider person."
  • "Dear Lizzy!"
  • "Oh! you are a great deal too apt, you know, to like people in general. Yo_ever see a fault in anybody. All the world are good and agreeable in you_yes. I never heard you speak ill of a human being in your life."
  • "I would not wish to be hasty in censuring anyone; but I always speak what _hink."
  • "I know you do; and it is  _that_  which makes the wonder. With  _your_  goo_ense, to be so honestly blind to the follies and nonsense of others!
  • Affectation of candour is common enough—one meets with it everywhere. But t_e candid without ostentation or design—to take the good of everybody'_haracter and make it still better, and say nothing of the bad—belongs to yo_lone. And so you like this man's sisters, too, do you? Their manners are no_qual to his."
  • "Certainly not—at first. But they are very pleasing women when you convers_ith them. Miss Bingley is to live with her brother, and keep his house; and _m much mistaken if we shall not find a very charming neighbour in her."
  • Elizabeth listened in silence, but was not convinced; their behaviour at th_ssembly had not been calculated to please in general; and with more quicknes_f observation and less pliancy of temper than her sister, and with _udgement too unassailed by any attention to herself, she was very littl_isposed to approve them. They were in fact very fine ladies; not deficient i_ood humour when they were pleased, nor in the power of making themselve_greeable when they chose it, but proud and conceited. They were rathe_andsome, had been educated in one of the first private seminaries in town,
  • had a fortune of twenty thousand pounds, were in the habit of spending mor_han they ought, and of associating with people of rank, and were therefore i_very respect entitled to think well of themselves, and meanly of others. The_ere of a respectable family in the north of England; a circumstance mor_eeply impressed on their memories than that their brother's fortune and thei_wn had been acquired by trade.
  • Mr. Bingley inherited property to the amount of nearly a hundred thousan_ounds from his father, who had intended to purchase an estate, but did no_ive to do it. Mr. Bingley intended it likewise, and sometimes made choice o_is county; but as he was now provided with a good house and the liberty of _anor, it was doubtful to many of those who best knew the easiness of hi_emper, whether he might not spend the remainder of his days at Netherfield,
  • and leave the next generation to purchase.
  • His sisters were anxious for his having an estate of his own; but, though h_as now only established as a tenant, Miss Bingley was by no means unwillin_o preside at his table—nor was Mrs. Hurst, who had married a man of mor_ashion than fortune, less disposed to consider his house as her home when i_uited her. Mr. Bingley had not been of age two years, when he was tempted b_n accidental recommendation to look at Netherfield House. He did look at it,
  • and into it for half-an-hour—was pleased with the situation and the principa_ooms, satisfied with what the owner said in its praise, and took i_mmediately.
  • Between him and Darcy there was a very steady friendship, in spite of grea_pposition of character. Bingley was endeared to Darcy by the easiness,
  • openness, and ductility of his temper, though no disposition could offer _reater contrast to his own, and though with his own he never appeare_issatisfied. On the strength of Darcy's regard, Bingley had the firmes_eliance, and of his judgement the highest opinion. In understanding, Darc_as the superior. Bingley was by no means deficient, but Darcy was clever. H_as at the same time haughty, reserved, and fastidious, and his manners,
  • though well-bred, were not inviting. In that respect his friend had greatl_he advantage. Bingley was sure of being liked wherever he appeared, Darcy wa_ontinually giving offense.
  • The manner in which they spoke of the Meryton assembly was sufficientl_haracteristic. Bingley had never met with more pleasant people or prettie_irls in his life; everybody had been most kind and attentive to him; ther_ad been no formality, no stiffness; he had soon felt acquainted with all th_oom; and, as to Miss Bennet, he could not conceive an angel more beautiful.
  • Darcy, on the contrary, had seen a collection of people in whom there wa_ittle beauty and no fashion, for none of whom he had felt the smalles_nterest, and from none received either attention or pleasure. Miss Bennet h_cknowledged to be pretty, but she smiled too much.
  • Mrs. Hurst and her sister allowed it to be so—but still they admired her an_iked her, and pronounced her to be a sweet girl, and one whom they would no_bject to know more of. Miss Bennet was therefore established as a sweet girl,
  • and their brother felt authorized by such commendation to think of her as h_hose.