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|Passing characters in P&P, ch.1-12 (long)
Written by Line
(4/18/2010 9:37 a.m.)
One of the things I wanted to focus on in this GR is the characters who are only mentioned in passing in P&P. Some readers seem to be under the impression, for example, that the Bingleys and one other person mentioned later in the novel are Darcy's only friends. I'm convinced that that's not true, and that JA, an economical writer who only mentioned people as they were necessary to the plot, expected her readers to understand that all her main characters had plenty of other friends and acqaintances in the background who are never mentioned. Anyway, here are the people mentioned in passing in ch.1-12:
- Mrs. Long (Mrs. Long is actually mentioned several times, but she is always off-stage. She is clearly one of Mrs. Bennet's inner circle. Whether she counts as a friend or not depends on Mrs. Bennet's mood. ;-)
- Mr. Morris (owner?/notary?/real estate agent? of Netherfield Park)
- "Mr. Bennet was *among* the earliest of those (plural) who waited on Mr. Bingley."
- Mrs. Long's 2 nieces (whom she seems to be responsible for)
- "Mr. Bingley had entertained hopes of being admitted to a sight of the young (Bennet) ladies, *of whose beauty he had heard much*". (Who's been talking so much about the Bennet girls' beauty? I can't imagine it was Mr. Bennet, and it sounds like more than one person. Hasn't Bingley mostly met the *men* of the neighbourhood so far? ;-)
- "(Elizabeth) told the story, however, with great spirit among her friends (plural)".
- Miss King
- the Miss Lucases (plural)
- Mr. Robinson (who asked Bingley who he thought the prettiest girl at the ball was)
- a young Lucas who had come with his sisters
- "It was at Sir William Lucas's, where *a large party* (about 20 people? - see ch.3) were assembled..."
- "It was generally evident, *whenever they met*, that (Bingley) *did* admire (Jane)."
- Elizabeth: "But, though Bingley and Jane meet *tolerably often*...they always meet in *large* mixed parties".
- Elizabeth: (In two weeks), "(Jane) danced two dances with (Bingley) at Meryton, she saw him one morning at his own house, and has since dined in company with him four times."
- two or three officers (joined in the dancing at Lucas Lodge)
- Mr. Phillips (BIL of Mrs. Bennet)
- Captain Carter
- Miss Bingley: "the gentlemen are to dine with the officers"
- Miss Watson's (library)
- Clarke's library
- Mr. Jones, the apothecary (also ch.8&9)
- "(Kitty and Lydia) repaired to the lodgings of one of the officers' wives". (not Mrs. Forster, since he's not married yet - see end of ch.12)
- Bingley's housekeeper
- Bingley's housemaid
- the "two elegant ladies" who wait on the Bingley sisters
- Mrs. Bennet: "I know we dine with four-and-twenty families".
- Miss Grantley (an acquaintance of Miss Bingley's, and probably Darcy's too)
- Nicholls (Bingley's housekeeper?/cook?)
- "several of the officers had dined lately with their uncle, a private had been flogged" (I actually looked up "several" in the dictionary, which said "more than two or three, but not many").
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