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|Fickle Public Opinion
Written by Cheryl
(4/28/2007 9:32 p.m.)
Mr. Darcy soon drew the attention of the room by his fine, tall person, handsome features, noble mien, and the report, which was in general circulation within five minutes after his entrance, of his having ten thousand a year. The gentlemen pronounced him to be a fine figure of a man, the ladies declared he was much handsomer than Mr. Bingley, and he was looked at with great admiration…
Can you imagine the impact someone like Mr Darcy made upon that assembly room? Had they ever seen his like before in little Meryton, where the "inoffensive, friendly, and obliging"(ch.5) Sir William Lucas was the highest ranking person in the neighborhood? He must have been an awe-inspiring sight. But…
…he was looked at with great admiration for about half the evening, till his manners gave a disgust which turned the tide of his popularity; for he was discovered to be proud, to be above his company, and above being pleased; and not all his large estate in Derbyshire could then save him from having a most forbidding, disagreeable countenance, and being unworthy to be compared with his friend. (ch. 3)
How quickly turns the tide of public opinion! But was it warranted? It is human nature to think more highly of a rich and handsome stranger than perhaps he deserves, and then, when disappointed in the reality, to think more poorly of that same person than perhaps he deserves.
What do you think? Did Mr Darcy bring this ill-opinion on himself by his refusal to even talk to anyone not in his party or were the townspeople too harsh and quick to judge when they pronounced him "the proudest, most disagreeable man in the world?"
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