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by Jane Austen

Emma Morality and Ethics Quotes

How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Chapter.Paragraph)

Quote #7

Fine dancing, I believe, like virtue, must be its own reward. (30.3)

The conflation of truly admirable values with trivial ones is a classic Austen move. Knightley, of course, is speaking ironically – or is he?

Quote #8

Frank was next to Emma, Jane opposite to them—and Mr. Knightley so placed as to see them all; and it was his object to see as much as he could, with as little apparent observation. (41.17)

When Knightley decides to play detective, he does it only for the best reasons – love (for Emma) and jealousy (of Frank). OK, maybe they’re not equally good reasons.

Quote #9

A young lady who faints, must be recovered; questions must be answered, and surprizes be explained. Such events are very interesting, but the suspense of them cannot last long. (39.4)

This is another classic move of Austen’s narrator. Right at an exciting part, our narrator backs out of the action to narrate in very broad strokes.

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