Pride and Prejudice



ElizabethElizabeth is the main character of the novel and has a lively but deferential disposition. She is a complex character in the sense that she possesses both virtues and vices, and must overcome the latter to live a happy life of the former. Her virtues may be seen in her ability to exercise social grace, in her humility and lightheartedness at the piano when performing for others, in her love for her father, Charlotte and Jane, and in her overall desire to be good and be seen as one who is good.

However, she is also prone to vanity, pride and prejudice—just like those she holds in contempt. She is quick to judge and often does not wait to form a balanced opinion of someone when she feels that her indignation is justified. She puffs up her pride with haughty feelings and prejudice to keep herself from being hurt, wounded or rebuffed by those whose intellect and wit are as great as her own.

What saves Elizabeth from becoming a person like Lady Catherine or Mr. Collins are both her sensibility and her willingness to admit the truth when presented with it. She reflects on evidence that is given her in Mr. Darcy’s letter and compares and contrasts it to what she has seen of things in reality. For example, her opinion of Mr. Wickham, previously good, takes a turn when she remembers that his behavior did not exactly match his pronouncements. Elizabeth’s crowning achievement is her ability to humbly accept when she has been wrong, admit of criticism to her own person and family, and love and forgive others who have offended or confounded her. In this manner, she wins back the love of Mr. Darcy.

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Essays About Pride and Prejudice