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What happens in this chapter and how does it affect the relationship between Lizzy and Darcy?

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Introduction

What happens in this chapter and how does it affect the relationship between Lizzy and Darcy? Lizzy's first impression of Darcy has resulted throughout the book in her having negative feelings towards him, seeing him as a very "disagreeable" person. However, in chapter sixteen her opinion of Darcy degraded to a greater extent after hearing the emotionally touching story from Mr Wickham about how after the passing of Darcy's father Darcy basically (according to Wickham's point of view) discontinued the established friendship between them both and abandoned his former friend, cutting off all resources his father had once so willingly provided. Lizzy after talking with Wickham seems to have the fixed believe in her mind that this is due to either a long bottled up jealousy from Wickham always being his father's "favourite" or/and greed. This is precisely why before the ball even begins Lizzy has a sharpened sense of prejudice against the seemingly villainous Mr Darcy. In contrast with the worsening relationship with Mr Darcy, Lizzy's feelings towards Mr Wickham are increased and her admiration towards the "scarred" Mr Wickham are apparent at the opening of this chapter, "Elizabeth...looked in vain for Mr Wickham", "She had dressed with more than usual care, and ...read more.

Middle

Darcy and his side of the story to put it one way; "I hear such different accounts of you as puzzle me exceedingly". On the other, she might have just commenced the conversation in order to attack Darcy, seemingly she attempts to do this by mentioning the fact that she had met Mr Wickham and made him as an acquaintance (not actually naming him of coarse but she knew Darcy knew who he was since she saw him seeing her with him); "When you met us there the other day, we had just been forming a new acquaintance. The effect was immediate. A deeper shade of hauteur overspread his features, but he said not a word", if this were an attack and it seems it was since she knew bringing up Mr Wickham would remind Darcy of the bad history between them both, she seems to have a naturally good personality since "blaming herself for her own weakness, could not go on", she couldn't be so cruel as to further attack Darcy. Whereas for Darcy it's completely different, he obviously admires Lizzy otherwise he wouldn't have asked her to dance with himself, his behaviour throughout the chapter also strengthens this idea, for example when Lizzy ...read more.

Conclusion

Darcy is still passionate for Lizzy with "a tolerable powerful feeling towards her", and Lizzy's feelings (although being slightly intensified after speaking with Miss Bingley) are "solicitude for Wickham, resentment against his enemies". Mr Bingley believes that (concerning Darcy's actions towards Mr Wickham), "it was left to him conditionally only". However since it was Darcy who informed Bingley of the situation, Lizzy refuses to confirm with Bingley's point of view: "you must excuse my not being convinced by assurances only" this is because of her prejudice which is comparable with Darcy's feelings becoming transparent during this chapter. It's obvious that Lizzy finds Mr Collins extremely annoying and possibly as a form of attacking Mr Darcy she encourages Mr Collins to go and speak to him: "You are not going to introduce yourself to Mr Darcy". However after Lizzy's attempts to attack Mr Darcy because of her love for Mr Wickham, ironically she ends up being embarrassed by her mother and sister, "Elizabeth blushed and blushed again". Also she seems to finally catch on to the fact that Mr Darcy is attracted to her at the end of the chapter, "she was convinced that his attention was invariably fixed by her" by noticing how much Mr Darcy stares at her. Pride and Prejudice 08/05/2007 Chapter 18 Analysis (Essay Question) ...read more.

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