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Pride and Prejudice narrates the family and romantic life of its heroine, Elizabeth Bennet. The book is not only a love story but a social commentary on how Austen viewed her society and its faults. She uses irony, sarcasm, and satire to criticize marriage traditions and the unfair treatment of women during her time. Pride and Prejudice also boasts witty dialogue and humorous situations that helped make it become the most successful book by Jane Austen.
See the fact file below for more information on the Pride and Prejudice or alternatively, you can download our 23-page Pride and Prejudice worksheet pack to utilise within the classroom or home environment.
Key Facts & Information
JANE AUSTEN LITERARY AND ROMANTIC LIFE
- Jane Austen was born on December 16, 1775, in Steventon, Hampshire, England.
- Most of her novels were published with the name, “By A Lady”, until 1817.
- She never married, but she was engaged to Harris Bigg-Wither for one day. She also befriended and became a constant ball dance partner of Tom Lefroy, but because she was poor, his family forbade him to see her.
- Pride and Prejudice was her most successful book, but she published a total of six books. Two of them were published posthumously.
- She died in Winchester on July 18, 1817, at the age of 41.
- Elizabeth Bennet – the protagonist of the story. She was the second oldest of the Bennet sisters. She was inquisitive and witty, which gave her confidence not to allow anyone to degrade or insult her family.
- Mr. Fitzwilliam Darcy – an aristocrat and extremely wealthy man who had become attracted to Elizabeth, albeit not immediately, despite his high regard for social class. He was arrogant, meticulous, and had a sense of pride for his honor and his family lineage.
- Jane Bennet – the eldest Bennet sister. She was considered the prettiest, and she was mild-mannered and sweet. Her blooming relationship with Mr. Bingley contrasted Darcy and Elizabeth at the beginning.
- Mr. Charles Bingley – a wealthy young man and Darcy’s best friend who pursued Jane Bennet. He was more amiable than Darcy and was easily persuaded. He did not care about social differences as much as his sister and Darcy.
- Mrs. Bennet – mother of the Bennet sisters. Her sole purpose in life was to see her five daughters be prosperously married.
- Mr. Bennet – father of the Bennet sisters. He favored Elizabeth because she was so much like him. They shared the same opinions and wit.
- George Wickham – a handsome and charming militiaman who was a frequent visitor in the Bennet household. He held a grudge against Darcy after Darcy banished him as part of the family. Darcy had a good reason to do so.
- Caroline Bingley – Mr. Bingley’s sister. She shared Darcy’s value for social class.
- Mr. Collins – a relative of Mr. Bennet who inherited Longbourne and everything Mr. Bennet owned once he died. He also proposed to Elizabeth.
- Charlotte Lucas – Elizabeth’s best friend whom Mr. Collins married. She chose convenience over love because, as she admitted, she was not a romantic person.
- Lydia – the youngest Bennet sister. She eloped with Wickham and was excited about the militiamen in their neighborhood.
- Kitty – the fourth Bennet sister. She was as crazy about boys as Lydia and was her constant companion.
- Mary – the third Bennet sister. She had rather read books than be involved in any social entanglements her sisters kept engaging in.
- The Bennet girls and Mrs. Bennet were thrilled to hear the news that Netherfield would be rented to a wealthy man, Mr. Bingley.
- As a mother of five girls, Mrs Bennet was bound by her duty to find a profitable match for her daughters.
- Mr. Bingley instantly became attracted to the eldest Bennet sister after attending a ball to welcome him.
- He was accompanied by Mr. Darcy, an aristocratic friend whose cold and high demeanor at the ball had become a subject of gossip.
- Elizabeth developed a prejudice against him, also, especially when she heard his comment about her appearance.
- Mr. Bingley and Jane quickly became more acquainted. When Caroline invited Jane to Netherfield, her mother insisted that she ride on horseback, as it was about to rain. Mrs. Bennet wanted Jane to be asked to stay.
- Elizabeth went after Jane to tend to her sick sister. Mr. Darcy became impressed with her wit and intelligence during their conversations.
- Mr. Collins asked Elizabeth to marry him, but she refused.
- Mrs. Bennet anguished over Elizabeth’s refusal, as she thought it would serve Elizabeth and the family well.
- A group of militiamen stationed in the nearby hometown had become friendly with the Bennet girls. Among them was Wickham, a handsome and charming young officer who the younger Bennet girls fancied.
- Wickham revealed to Elizabeth that he was once a ward of Mr. Darcy’s father and was left with an inheritance, but Mr. Darcy took it from him.
- Mr. Collins found a wife in the form of Elizabeth’s friend, Charlotte Lucas, who accepted his proposal for financial and security reasons.
- During the winter, Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley decided to go back to London. This disappointed Jane, who had grown very fond of Bingley.
- Before the winter ended, Jane decided to go to the city to visit some friends, and she hoped that she would also meet Mr. Bingley. She did not.
- Elizabeth visited her friend, Charlotte, and stayed with her for a while.
- Charlotte and Mr. Collins lived near his patron, Lady Catherine de Bourgh, who was also Mr. Darcy’s aunt. She had wanted him to marry her daughter.
- Elizabeth encountered Mr. Darcy while he was visiting his aunt. He made several calls to the Collins’ residence because of her.
- To Elizabeth’s surprise, Mr. Darcy proposed to her. He also told her that he was doing her a favor, as marrying him would have been advantageous to her family. This made her angrily turn him down.
- She told him that he was arrogant and blurted out what Wickham had confided in her about. She also blamed him for steering Mr. Bingley away from Jane.
- Darcy left, but he sent her a letter explaining that he only persuaded Bingley because he didn’t think that what they had was serious.
- He revealed that Wickham was a liar. Wickham had spent his inheritance on gambling and attempted to elope with his sister. This revelation caused Elizabeth to treat Wickham coldly and doubt his first impression of Darcy.
- The stay of the militia was about to end, and this devastated the younger Bennet sisters. Lydia convinced their father to allow her to go to Brighton, where the militia was stationed.
- Elizabeth took a trip to the Gardiners and ended up going to Mr. Darcy’s estate. She made sure that he was not home when she visited.
- She learned how kind and generous Mr. Darcy was to his servant. She still met Mr. Darcy, despite trying to avoid him. He acted friendly to her and invited her to meet his sister. The two instantly liked each other.
- Elizabeth received a letter stating that Lydia eloped with Wickham and could not be found. Mr. Bennet and Mr. Gardiner went to look for them. The family was concerned about the disgrace it would bring to the family.
- Eventually, a letter arrived stating that Lydia and Wickham were found and would be married in exchange for a sizable income given to Wickham. They thought it was Mr. Gardiner who settled the arrangement.
- After their wedding, Wickham and Lydia returned to Longbourne, and she bragged that she was the first one to get married. They left immediately.
- Mr. Darcy and Mr. Bingley returned, and the latter asked for Jane’s hand in marriage. Darcy did not show any hint of asking Elizabeth again.
- Caroline told Elizabeth that she wanted her to promise to turn down Mr. Darcy if he proposed. Elizabeth told her that she could not promise anything and that she and Darcy were not engaged.
- Mr. Darcy and Elizabeth found themselves walking alone together when he admitted that his affection for her had not changed. He proposed, and Elizabeth accepted. They lived in Pemberley, and Mr. Bingley found an estate where he and Jane could live close to the Darcys.
THEMES IN PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
- ROMANTIC LOVE
- The book revolves around three blossoming relationships: Jane and Bingley, Lydia and Wickham, and Elizabeth and Darcy. The third one is what the book deeply explores. The title is about them.
- Elizabeth and Darcy’s story did not start with love at first sight. In fact, the two were indifferent about each other. Elizabeth hearing Darcy’s comment about her appearance served as a long-time wound for her.
- Elizabeth’s social status did not make her attractive to Darcy.
- The beauty of their story is that we can see how they change little by little. Destiny forced them to learn about each other and see who they were on the inside.
- They slowly realized and recognized their faults and committed to changing for the better.
- Their character development ended up being their way to accept their feelings for each other in the end.
- Two kind of families existed in the book: the middle class family, which is the Bennet Family, and the upper class, which are the Bingleys and Darcys.
- The Bennets, being in the middle class, hoped to elevate their status by marrying wealthy men.
- Mrs. Bennet insisted on this for her daughters, as mothers would have done in that era (although not as dramatically as her). The fear of her daughters being homeless when their father died is what drove Mrs. Bennet in her sincere yet ludicrous actions.
- When Darcy pointed out to Elizabeth when he first proposed that he was doing her family a favor, she refused him, as she would not tolerate any insults being thrown towards her family.
- Bingley and Darcy both valued the opinion of the female member of their family, Caroline for Bingley and Aunt Catherine for Darcy.
- SOCIAL CLASS
- Darcy, being very aware of his position in society, magnified the social class division in this book.
- The middle class women had no choice but to put up with the societal pressure of being lady-like to marry well.
- Charlotte is the perfect example of this predicament. She was so worried about her age and status that she did not mind marrying someone she did not love. She grew up with a practical mindset and paid little mind to romance.
- In the book, it is sad to see that the upper class viewed the lower class as their inferiors. Caroline Bingley frequently expressed how the Bennet sisters were not suitable for Darcy and Bingley.
- Reputation was everything for women in this century. It could boost their social status or get them condemned by society together with their family.
- Reputation somehow was played out for laughs at the beginning of the novel. Mrs. Bennet had the reputation of being shallow and scandalous, but Mr. Collins reputation could not be farther from Mrs. Bennet.
- When Lydia eloped with Wickham, her and her family’s reputation was threatened. It could have hurt the chances for her and her sisters to marry well.
- Darcy, who readers assumed was planning to propose again to Elizabeth, made sure that Lydia’s reputation was saved. To offer that kind of help to his enemy might have proved how Darcy loved Elizabeth, as well as the seriousness of Lydia’s situation.
- PRIDE AND PREJUDICE
- The novel was first entitled First Impressions due to the number of first impressions that turned out to be wrong.
- It was Elizabeth who had inaccurate first impressions throughout the book. It became the trait that she needed to overcome to become a well-rounded character and to make her see that Darcy was the right man for her.
- The same was true with Darcy, who had to overcome his pride and learn to lower his standards so he could appreciate the people around him and make Elizabeth his wife.
Pride and Prejudice Worksheets
This is a fantastic bundle which includes everything you need to know about the Pride and Prejudice across 23 in-depth pages. These are ready-to-use Pride and Prejudice worksheets that are perfect for teaching students about the Pride and Prejudice which narrates the family and romantic life of its heroine, Elizabeth Bennet. The book is not only a love story but a social commentary on how Austen viewed her society and its faults. She uses irony, sarcasm, and satire to criticize marriage traditions and the unfair treatment of women during her time. Pride and Prejudice also boasts witty dialogue and humorous situations that helped make it become the most successful book by Jane Austen.
Complete List Of Included Worksheets
- Pride and Prejudice Facts
- Austen’s Life
- The Great Mrs. Bennet
- The Most Romantic Novel
- Pride and Prejudice
- Austen’s Notes
- Austen’s Wit and Wisdom
- Modern Letters
- The Bennet Sisters
- First Impressions
- Satirical Cartoon
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Use With Any Curriculum
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