| Quote #4
"It’s a merit to be strong."
Isabel seems to be speaking from experience here – after all, her father just died (perhaps she didn’t outwardly suffer enough and was called hard herself?). Ralph attempts to comfort her by speaking a basic human truth – sometimes you just can’t win.
| Quote #5
Isabel listened with extreme respect to this admonition, but she said after a minute: "I must tell you that what I shall think about is some way of letting you know that what you ask is impossible--letting you know it without making you miserable."
To Lord Warburton, the worst kind of suffering is that of a life with no purpose – and, right now, he sees his sole purpose as marrying Isabel.
| Quote #6
The peril for you is that you live too much in the world of your own dreams. You're not enough in contact with reality--with the toiling, striving, suffering, I may even say sinning, world that surrounds you. You're too fastidious; you've too many graceful illusions. Your newly-acquired thousands will shut you up more and more to the society of a few selfish and heartless people who will be interested in keeping them up. (20.19)
Henrietta advises Isabel to embrace harsh reality, instead of living in the artificial, imaginary world of the wealthy.