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|Ch.10: Wordless information-gathering
Written by Line
(4/12/2013 9:30 p.m.)
I was going to try to list all the examples of wordless information-gathering in P&P, but there are just too many, so I'm going to restrict myself to a few that especially struck my notice:
(After being teased by Bingley) Mr. Darcy smiled; but Elizabeth thought she could perceive that he was rather offended, and therefore checked her laugh.
Some people interpret this passage to mean that Darcy was *not* really offended, but IMO JA wrote it this way to indicate the subtlety of the clues Elizabeth was interpreting, and not that there was any doubt that Darcy was offended. (There is at least one other example later in the novel where JA used this kind of language to indicate subtlety and not actual doubt, IMHO, which I'd like to come back to later.)
BTW, here is an example of Elizabeth, who does not like Darcy, refraining from laughing to avoid offending him further, just out of consideration for another person's feelings. May I say that I really like this young woman? :-)
Miss Bingley saw, or suspected enough to be jealous (about Darcy's attraction to Elizabeth, despite the fact that he was doing his best to hide it). As the Omniscient Narrator tells us, her suspicions are quite correct, so how does she come by them?
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