Darcy's Letter to Elizabeth in "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen

Categories: Jane Austen

In the novel Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, the novel follows the two different lives of Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet as they slowly fall in love. In the novel, even though their love is competing with their social status it all works out in the end. In the beginning, Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth do not like each other at all and Elizabeth thinks Mr. Darcy is too prideful. Towards the middle, Mr. Darcy gets fancied by Elizabeth and proposes to her and gets denied.

Then, in the end, Mr. Darcy proposes again and Elizabeth and she accepts after him telling her his feelings have not changed since the last time he proposed. Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice uses imagery to show the theme that people should not fall in or out of love based on social status. This theme is shown when Elizabeth denies Mr.Darcys first proposal, when Wickham tries to marry Mr. Darcy's sister Georgiana, and when Elizabeth and Mr.

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Darcy run into each other for the first time since his failed proposal.

The thesis statement that in Pride and Prejudice Jane Austen uses imagery to contribute to the theme of how people should not fall in or out of love based on social standing is shown when Mr.Darcy first proposes to Elizabeth. Mr. Darcy talks about how he should not be in love with her because of her lower social standing, and Jane Austen writes, “ His sense of her inferiority- of Its being a degradation - of the family obstacles which judgment had always opposed to inclination, were dwelt on with warmth which seemed due to the consequence he was wounding but was very unlikely to recommend his suit.

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” (178). In this section, Mr. Darcy proposes to Elizabeth but explains to her why he should not be proposing because Elizabeth is in such lower class in society than Mr. Darcy that being married to her would be degrading and his family would not approve, but he can not help that he is in love with her even though he should not be. So even though Elizabeth should be flattered by a proposal from someone like Mr. Darcy he makes her feel so embarrassed and upset about Mr. Darcy thinking it is so bad to be in love with her so she denies the proposal. This shows the imagery of Mr. Darcy as a wealthy and a person that is going to be just fine in life and Elizabeth being maybe a poor person with a bad life. It shows Mr. Darcy being more wealthy when the sentence says that he had a sense of inferiority. When he proposes he makes it seem like he is inferior to Elizabeth and that he is better than her so they should not be together because that is not normal for someone in his class. This also helps depict Mr. Darcy as a little bit stuck up and full of himself. He also says that his family would not approve. This is because in this time period people would usually marry someone in their same class of society but his family not approving paints a picture of Elizabeth being below them in society.

Furthermore, this theme is shown when Mr. Wickham tries to marry Mr. Darcy's sister Georgiana. When Elizabeth denies Mr. Darcy's proposal he writes her a letter to address some of the reasons she said she did not want to marry him. One of those reason being that Mr. Wickam told Elizabeth that Mr. Darcy would not give Mr. Wickham his money that Mr. Darcy's father left in the will for Mr. Wickham. He explains in the letter that this is not the truth, and why Mr. Darcy is not a fan of Mr. Wickham is because Mr. Wickham tries to trick Mr. Darcy's sister Georgiana into marrying him but he only really wanted to marry her for her family's money. Mr. Darcy writes, “ … and by her connivance and aid, he so far recommended himself to Georgiana, whose affectionate heart retained a strong impression of his kindness to her as a child, that she was persuaded to believe herself in love, and to consent to an elopement.” (191). In this chunk of the novel, Mr. Wickham is trying to persuade Georgiana into marriage, not because he loves her, but because he wants to love her for her money. He wants to marry Georgiana because he was getting money from Mr. Darcy but he wasted it and then Mr. Darcy would not give him any more money. Therefore he needed to marry Georgiana in secret so he could get the Darcys money again without going through Mr. Darcy. Mr. Wickham plan fails since Mr. Darcy visits Georgiana and finds out about how the elopement is supposed to happen and he calls it off. Jane Austen’s word choice in this passage portrays an image of passionate and sweet love because it states how Mr. Wickham easily takes advantage of Georgiana because of her young age. In the dialogue relating to the elopement, it says that Georgiana was so happy about his kindness to her when she was a child that she actually believed they could be in love. This shows that Georgiana was blind to Mr. Wickhams bad intentions. In reality, Mr. Wickham’s strive for wealth is causing him to try to love someone he does not actually love, he just wants Georgiana's wealth.

In addition to how Austen previously used imagery to display the theme, she also uses imagery to show the theme in Pride and Prejudice is where Elizabeth shows up to Mr. Darcy's estate with her aunt and uncle. Mr. Darcy is not supposed to be home at that time, and that is why Elizabeth agrees to go, but then she runs into Mr. Darcy. In this fragment of the book, Austen uses vivid imagery to describe the way their first confrontation after Mr. Darcys failed proposal attempt. Austen writes, ¨their eyes instantly met, and the cheeks of each were overspread with the deepest blush.” (234). In this sentence, Austen is describing how they look at each other for the first time in a while, and later in this passage, the novel describes how Mr. Darcy is still trying to impress Elizabeth. Mr. Darcy still trying to impress Elizabeth relates to the theme people should not fall in or out of love based on social standing. Elizabeth turned down Mr. Darcy proposal because he thought that their social standing was too different. In this section of the book, the imagery is showing that he still wants to impress her because he was wrong to think that it was wrong for them to be together just because of their different class in society. People should not be turned away from another person because of their social status because in the end they still have the same feelings for that person.

Love should not be determined based on peoples class in society. People cannot help who they love in life. This is shown many times in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice where the storyline follows Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet fighting their relationship based on their different statuses in society. The theme is specifically shown when Mr. Darcy first proposes to Elizabeth, when Mr. Wickham tries to marry Georgiana, and when the novel describes Elizabeths and Mr. Darcy's first physical contact after his failed proposal attempt.


Updated: Dec 12, 2023
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Darcy's Letter to Elizabeth in "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen. (2021, Mar 24). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/darcy-s-letter-to-elizabeth-in-pride-and-prejudice-by-jane-austen-essay

Darcy's Letter to Elizabeth in "Pride and Prejudice" by Jane Austen essay
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