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Quotes

Quote #4

[…] every body had a burst of admiration on first arriving; but in the general amount of the day there was deficiency. There was a languor, a want of spirits, a want of union, which could not be got over. They separated too much into parties. (43.1)

Bad parties start off exactly the same as good ones. Austen’s narrator tracks the sinking feeling of a bad party, complete with the sense that there’s no real reason why nothing is working out as planned.

Quote #5

I must, I will,—I will tell you truths while I can; satisfied with proving myself your friend by very faithful counsel, and trusting that you will some time or other do me greater justice than you can do now. (43.52)

Mr. Knightley’s honesty is his one unchangeable trait. It’s this honesty which can break through Emma’s desperation to remain witty and gleeful at the Box Hill party.

Quote #6

Upon my word […] I begin to doubt my having any such talent. (47.13)

Emma’s self-doubt has to be expressed first to Harriet (whom she doesn’t quite respect) before she can share it with people like Mr. Knightley.

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