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Written by Line
(4/15/2013 8:11 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, Kindness, penned by Therese
If you check the Netherfield chapters, we are clearly told that *Bingley* was the only one who was nice to Elizabeth and tried to make her feel welcome, while the others (including Darcy) basically ignored her and made her feel like an intruder. To go over your examples one by one:
1)Yes, Darcy did react "with grave propriety" (if not with enthusiam) after the surprise of Sir William's suggestion, and we are told that he was "not unwilling" to dance with Elizabeth this time, but how was *she* supposed to know that after his previous behaviour?
2) Darcy's comment about Elizabeth's height certainly shows that she is on his mind more than he would like to admit, but I don't see how it's intended to make her feel better in any way.
3) Elizabeth commented earlier that she is *not* a great reader, and while you could see Darcy's comment as support for her, it could just as easily be read as a put-down to Caroline.
4) Darcy needed to finish his letter anyway, so taking Elizabeth's "advice" was no big deal, IMO.
5) Don't forget that Darcy applies to *both* young ladies for some music (which is polite), but nobody, including Elizabeth and Caroline herself, could be criticized for assuming that he really meant Caroline.
6)I agree: the "dancing a reel" conversation is the only one, IMO, where Elizabeth might reasonably be expected to guess, or at least suspect, that Darcy is trying to flirt with her.
7) Yes, I agree that Darcy is actually being courteous here, but it's the basic courtesy that might be expected of a lady or gentleman towards anyone, not specifically towards Elizabeth.
8)I think the "Miss Bennet" mentioned here is Jane, not Elizabeth, and Darcy *is* being polite, if not enthusiastic, in addressing her first. We are told that "Mr. Hurst also made her a slight bow, and said he was 'very glad'; but diffuseness and warmth remained for Bingley's salutation".
9)I'm not sure how you feel that Darcy not wanting to play cards is meant as a kindness towards Elizabeth.
10) If you mean "And your (defect)," he replied, with a smile, "is wilfully to misunderstand them," then yes, I can see
Darcy really needs to make much more of an effort to show that he is a nice person, IMO! :-)
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