Pride and Prejudice: Chapter 28 - Summary & Analysis

Also Read

      Summary: The following day Elizabeth and the Lucases arrive at Hunsford, where they are met by Charlotte and Mr. Collins at the gate of the parsonage, which adjoins Rosings Park, Lady Catherine’s country estate. Elizabeth notices that Mr. Collins is as pompous and boring as ever. They are taken over the house and grounds, shown the view of Rosings; and told that they will see Lady Catherine at Church on Sunday. Charlotte seems contented with marriage and bears her husband’s often vexatious behaviour with composure. The next day Maria Lucas, greatly excited, points out to Elizabeth two ladies in a low phaeton which has stopped at the garden gate. One of them is Miss de Bourgh who is thin, sickly and cross-looking. This pleases Elizabeth, who hopes Darcy will marry her and have a trying time. Mr. Collins and Charlotte stand talking to the ladies. When they have gone the former congratulates them on their good fortune, which turns out to be an invitation for the whole party to dine at Rosings the next day.

      Critical Analysis: Here is Jane Austen’s portrayal of the results of a marriage founded on convenience. Charlotte’s home is indeed “neat and comfortable”, but she must also “wisely” be deaf to the foolishness of her husband. Only when Mr. Collins “is forgotten, was there really a great air of comfort throughout”. This is Jane Austen’s most bitter indictment of the marriage customs of England. A girl had no other alternative of career or profession and had to settle for a marriage of convenience in order to find economic security. Love is of no consequence in such marriages
of convenience.

      We have, already heard about Lady Catherine being ‘proud’, ‘dictatorial’ and ‘insolent’. Here we meet her in person as a formidable, loud, offensive and foolish lady, an apt supervisor for the pompous Collins. Mr. Collins is his usual fawning self, bowing to Lady Catherine, much to Elizabeth’s amusement.

Previous Post Next Post