History Headscratchers / PrideAndPrejudice

28th Jan '17 9:16:41 AM lihtox
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* I wouldn't be surprised if Lydia found out he was leaving and begged him to take her with him, and he was too overcome by lust to say no. It could be that he never actually said anything about "marriage" (he's pretty careful about his choice in words), and Lydia talked herself into believing that they were going to Scotland.
28th Jan '17 9:07:22 AM lihtox
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** Social levels need to be considered here. Mrs. Bennet is a commoner who married a gentleman, and she seems to get along just fine with people of her own rank (Mrs. Phillips, for instance, or the friends she talks to at the parties). But she married a gentleman, and in most of the book she is dealing with people in higher social circles, and she's never bothered/managed to learn to adapt. (Certainly her husband hasn't bothered to teach her anything, as he's lazy and is probably amused by the way she upsets people.) As far as being illiberal, she probably thinks "I'm a gentleman's wife, surely we have all the money we need!" Think how many people win the lottery and then end up ruined because they get carried away.
23rd Nov '16 2:09:20 AM DoctorNemesis
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* Darcy might not have thought she could actually hear him or that she was listening. She was "near enough" to hear him, but that doesn't necessarily mean she was right next to him, and they ''were'' at a dance, which would probably be quite noisy in and of itself. If he did intend to insult her and knew she was listening, that works as well; remember, Darcy's legitimately quite big-headed until Elizabeth shoots him down after his first proposal. He might have simply assumed that she found him and his bags of money awesome enough to overlook his insult when they first met.

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* Darcy might not have thought she could actually hear him or that she was listening. She was "near enough" to hear him, but that doesn't necessarily mean she was right next to him, and they ''were'' at a dance, which would probably be quite noisy in and of itself. If he did intend to insult her and knew she was listening, listening (which, if nothing else, is perhaps a bit unlikely given what a premium he's shown to place on proper social conduct), that works as well; remember, Darcy's legitimately quite big-headed until Elizabeth shoots him down after his first proposal. He might have simply assumed that she found him and his bags of money awesome enough to overlook his insult when they first met.met, or that she simply didn't remember it.
11th Nov '16 4:19:52 PM CharlesTheBold
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* Piketty's book on Capital explains some of this ( He uses Jane Austen and Honore de Balzac to illustrate how money worked in the past) The British government needed money to fight wars (in this era, against Napoleon) so they offered high interest rates to people who kept their money in the Bank of England, where the government could use it. Governments of the time were not allow to run deficits and were limited how much they could tax. From Darcy's point of view, the interest was guaranteed income of so-and-so per year.
11th Nov '16 3:52:25 PM CharlesTheBold
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** The whole point of the "entailment" problem is that Mr. Bennett could NOT name the heir of the estate -- it would AUTOMATICALLY go to Collins as the nearest male relative. (Incidentally, the reason Americans are so confused about entailments is that Thomas Jefferson hated the idea and banned entailments in US law)

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** The whole point of the "entailment" problem is that Mr. Bennett could NOT name the heir of the estate -- it would AUTOMATICALLY go to Collins as the nearest male relative. (Incidentally, the reason Americans are so confused about unfamiliar with entailments is that Thomas Jefferson hated the idea and banned entailments in US law) law -- "The Earth belongs to the present generation")
11th Nov '16 3:49:20 PM CharlesTheBold
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**** Since Mr. Collins is Mr. Bennet's nearest male relative (that was what the entailment law required) they can't be very distantly related.


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** The whole point of the "entailment" problem is that Mr. Bennett could NOT name the heir of the estate -- it would AUTOMATICALLY go to Collins as the nearest male relative. (Incidentally, the reason Americans are so confused about entailments is that Thomas Jefferson hated the idea and banned entailments in US law)
16th Jul '16 2:41:41 PM gothelittle
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** The reason why Mrs. Bennet was so upset at Elizabeth for not marrying Mr. Collins specifically is because she saw a chance to keep Longbourn in her family. Otherwise, no matter how the daughters married, the estate would still go to Mr. Collins. That was why she was so anxious to see them well married - she knew that they could not stay home, because they had no home once their father died.
30th May '16 3:12:19 PM bombadilla
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** But why does he think it would be that easy? After all, Lydia isn't an orphan, she isn't somebody's neglected ward or anything. She's a primary member of a very solidly upper (or upper-middle?) class (if not particularly rich or influential) family who would definitely be very invested in saving her honour, who therefore wouldn't be willing to let him get off the hook so easily.

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** But why does he think it would be that easy? After all, Lydia isn't an orphan, she isn't somebody's neglected ward or anything. She's a primary member of a very solidly upper (or upper-middle?) class (if not particularly rich or influential) family who would definitely be very invested in saving her honour, who therefore wouldn't be willing to let him get off the hook so easily.
19th Apr '16 5:35:51 AM Carmilla
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** The legal situation was actually even more complicated than this. It's not just a question of people being reluctant to leave property to their daughters because daughters would leave the family; legally, you could only leave land or property to your daughters ''to be split evenly between them''. (Money could be split unevenly, but not land.) There was no way under English law at the time to leave your whole estate to only one of your daughters, or even one of your sons other than your firstborn - either all the property went to your eldest son, or all the property was divided evenly between your children, thus putting an end to the estate as an entity. (If you wanted to leave your estate to say, your third son, you'd have to completely disinherit and possibly even disown the older two, and they'd probably be able to take you to court over it.) The purpose of entailment was not just to keep land in the family, but to keep it intact as an estate. Anne de Bourgh is able to inherit Rosings ''only'' because she is an only child. If she'd had a sister, her father would probably have entailed the property rather than have it split in half.
19th Apr '16 5:08:11 AM Carmilla
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** Also worth noting that even if the entail wasn't broken, a Bennet son would be responsible for his mother and unmarried sisters after his father's death. With no son, that responsibility falls to the sisters' husbands; any reasonably well-off man marrying a Bennet sister could expect his obligations towards Mrs Bennet and any of her unmarried daughters to be written into the marriage contract. So as the situation stands in the book, the Bennet girls aren't just bringing very little money to a marriage, they're actually bringing liability to it. Having a brother wouldn't necessarily give them any more money, but at least the liability would be removed.
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