Pride and Prejudice - by Jane Austen
Mr. Bingley had soon made himself acquainted with all the
principal people in the room; he was lively and unreserved,
danced every dance, was angry that the ball closed so early,
and talked of giving one himself at Netherfield. Such amiable
qualities must speak for themselves. What a contrast between
him and his friend! Mr. Darcy danced only once with Mrs. Hurst
and once with Miss Bingley, declined being introduced to any
other lady, and spent the rest of the evening in walking about
the room, speaking occasionally to one of his own party. His
character was decided. He was the proudest, most disagreeable
man in the world, and everybody hoped that he would never come
there again. Amongst the most violent against him was Mrs.
Bennet, whose dislike of his general behaviour was sharpened
into particular resentment by his having slighted one of her
Excerpt from chapter 3
Elizabeth Bennet had been obliged, by the scarcity of gentlemen,
to sit down for two dances; and during part of that time,
Mr. Darcy had been standing near enough for her to hear a
conversation between him and Mr. Bingley, who came from the
dance for a few minutes, to press his friend to join it.
"Come, Darcy," said he, "I must have you dance. I hate to see
you standing about by yourself in this stupid manner. You had
much better dance."
"I certainly shall not. You know how I detest it, unless I am
particularly acquainted with my partner. At such an assembly as
this it would be insupportable. Your sisters are engaged, and
there is not another woman in the room whom it would not be a
punishment to me to stand up with."
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