Wednesday, 23 March 2011

Sense and Sensibility

This is the first Austen I've re read whilst blogging. Looking at my book of quotations I've only one Jane Austen quote stored away. But still. I was looking for beautiful words about the countryside, frippery sentences about clothes, great lines about familiar London places. But no. What seemed like endless comments on how much money someone has.

What I did pick out were the great exclamations made by Mrs Jennings

"Oh! Colonel," said she, with her usual noisy cheerfulness, "I am monstrous glad to see you."

or thoughts by Marianne
'...and she was wildly urgent to be gone."

Their brother Mr John Dashwood
"She has borne it all with the fortitude of an angel!"

Miss Steele, her third 'la!' in one page
"La! if you have not got your best spotted muslin on!"

And then Miss Austen slams in a passage like this....

"We think now" -said Mr. Dashwood, after a short pause, "of Robert's marrying Miss Morton."
Elinor, smiling at the grave and decisive importance of her brother's tome. calmly replied,
"The lady, I suppose, has no choice in the affair."
"Choice! -how do you mean?"-
"I only mean, that I suppose from your manner of speaking, it must be the same to Miss Morton whether she marry Edward or Robert."
"Certainly, there can be no difference; for Robert will now to all intents and purposes be considered as the eldest son;- and as to anything else, they are both very agreeable young men..."

And to my twenty first century mind that truly is monstrous.


  1. Austen is unbeaten at throwing in such casual monstrosities, so slyly that I sometimes have to re-read the passage to make sure my eyes caught it right the first time - I think she felt the same way you do about it.

  2. I know ... everytime I re-read Austen, I find something I didn't get the first time. When I was younger I totally missed some of her inferences, but now, benefitting from age and experience, they strike an immediate chord.

  3. Tonia - Yes I think you're right on her views.
    potterjotter - I know want to re read more of her novels but I think they'll just have to join an orderly queue with all the other books.

  4. Hi Joan, You obviously have very good taste! (with the dress from Hobbs.)Love the idea of your blog.

  5. Lynne - Thank you for your comment on dress and blog...


Ooh how lovely more stripes on the page...
Thank you for taking the time.