Quick Index Board Index Home FAQ Site Map
|Discussing a Ball
Written by BarbaraB
(4/11/2013 6:42 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, innate deficiencies of Darcy, penned by mikeB in Japan
It was common practice for Regency folk to discuss a ball afterwards. They actually visited each other the day after whenever possible to delight in lingering over all the details. It seems everything was fair game: fashion, food, the luck (or not) in the card games, who danced with whom and how many times, bits and scraps of conversation, puns and jokes, the attendees themselves in all their glory (or not), etc. and so on. In my opinion real meanness was not needed to participate in this activity but of course it happened within some discussions, I'm sure. We see evidence of this tradition of fondness for discussing balls the next day in:
*P&P: That the Miss Lucases and the Miss Bennets should meet to talk over a ball was absolutely necessary; and the morning after the assembly brought the former to Longbourn to hear and to communicate. (5)
*MP: She [Fanny P] talked to her aunt Bertram— she must talk to somebody of the ball; but her aunt had seen so little of what had passed, and had so little curiosity, that it was heavy work. Lady Bertram was not certain of anybody’s dress or anybody’s place at supper but her own.... (29)
When Fanny got nowhere with Lady Bertram: She could think of William the next day more cheerfully; and as the morning afforded her an opportunity of talking over Thursday night with Mrs. Grant and Miss Crawford, in a very handsome style, with all the heightenings of imagination, and all the laughs of playfulness which are so essential to the shade of a departed ball. (29)
*The Watsons: the next morning brought a great many visitors. It was the way of the place always to call on Mrs Edwards on the morning after a ball...discussing the merits of the ball with all this succession of company...
*Jane Austen herself: She loved to send out all the happenings of a ball to her sister if she was not at home at the time of a ball and you can tell that she had great delight in passing on all the details, both negative and positive, laughable, scandalous, etc..
As much as Darcy has marks against him, I think we can probably acquit him of this particular deficiency or otherwise put the blame on Regency society. :)
Groupread is maintained by Myretta with WebBBS 3.21.