Also in chapter 34:
"Pity me, dear Miss Dashwood!" said Lucy, (snip)
Elinor could have given her immediate relief by suggesting the possibility of its being Miss Morton's
mother, rather than her own, whom they were about to behold; but instead of doing that, she assured her,
and with great sincerity, that she did pity her, -- to the utter amazement of Lucy, who, though really
uncomfortable herself, hoped at least to be an object of irrepressible envy to Elinor.
... Mrs. Ferrars was a little, thin woman, upright, even to formality, in her figure, and serious, even to
sourness, in her aspect. Her complexion was sallow: and her features small, without beauty, and naturally
without expression: but a lucky contraction of the brow had rescued her countenance from the disgrace of
insipidity, by giving it the strong characters of pride and ill-nature. She was not a woman of many words:
for, unlike people in general, she proportioned them to the number of her ideas; and of the few syllables
that did escape her, not one fell to the share of Miss Dashwood, whom she eyed with the spirited
determination of disliking her at all events.
...The dinner was a grand one, the servants were numerous, and everything bespoke the Mistress's
inclination for shew, and the Master's ability to support it. In spite of the improvements and additions which
were making to the Norland estate, and in spite of its owner having once been within some thousand
pounds of being obliged to sell out at a loss, nothing gave any symptom of that indigence which he had
tried to infer from it; no poverty of any kind, except of conversation, appeared -- but there, the deficiency
was considerable. John Dashwood had not much to say for himself that was worth hearing, and his wife had
still less. But there was no peculiar disgrace in this, for it was very much the case with the chief of their
visitors, who almost all laboured under one or other of these disqualifications for being agreeable -- want of
sense, either natural or improved, want of elegance, want of spirits, or want of temper.
From chapter 35:
"Going so soon!" said Marianne; "my dear Edward, this must not be."
And drawing him a little aside, she whispered her persuasion that Lucy could not stay much longer. But
even this encouragement failed, for he would go; and Lucy, who would have outstaid him had his visit
lasted two hours, soon afterwards went away.
And from chapter 36:
I come now to the relation of a misfortune, which about this time befell Mrs. John Dashwood. It so
happened that while her two sisters with Mrs. Jennings were first calling on her in Harley Street, another of
her acquaintance had dropt in -- a circumstance in itself not apparently likely to produce evil to her. But
while the imaginations of other people will carry them away to form wrong judgments of our conduct, and
to decide on it by slight appearances, one's happiness must in some measure be always at the mercy of
chance. In the present instance, this last-arrived lady allowed her fancy so far to outrun truth and
probability, that on merely hearing the name of the Miss Dashwoods, and understanding them to be Mr.
Dashwood's sisters, she immediately concluded them to be staying in Harley Street; and this
misconstruction produced within a day or two afterwards, cards of invitation for them as well as for their
brother and sister, to a small musical party at her house. The consequence of which was, that Mrs. John
Dashwood was obliged to submit not only to the exceedingly great inconvenience of sending her carriage
for the Miss Dashwoods, but, what was still worse, must be subject to all the unpleasantness of appearing
to treat them with attention: and who could tell that they might not expect to go out with her a second time?
The power of disappointing them, it was true, must always be hers. But that was not enough; for when
people are determined on a mode of conduct which they know to be wrong, they feel injured by the
expectation of anything better from them.
... Robert explained to her himself in the course of
a quarter of an hour's conversation; for, talking of his brother, and lamenting the extreme gaucherie which
he really believed kept him from mixing in proper society, he candidly and generously attributed it much
less to any natural deficiency, than to the misfortune of a private education; while he himself, though
probably without any particular, any material superiority by nature, merely from the advantage of a public
school, was as well fitted to mix in the world as any other man.
Elinor would not oppose his opinion, because whatever might be her general estimation of the advantage
of a public school, she could not think of Edward's abode in Mr. Pratt's family with any satisfaction.
Oh dear, this was a lot, but I found myself laughing a lot while reading these chapters.