Austen Said:

Patterns of Diction in Jane Austen's Major Novels


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mode of speech

it was much better worth looking at in the summer.
was a very genteel, pretty kind of girl.
how many sisters she had, whether they were older or younger than herself, whether any of them were likely to be married, whether they were handsome, where they had been educated, what carriage her father kept, and what had been her mother's maiden name?
“Your father's estate is entailed on Mr. Collins, I think. For your sake,”
“I am glad of it; but otherwise I see no occasion for entailing estates from the female line. It was not thought necessary in Sir Lewis de Bourgh's family. Do you play and sing, Miss Bennet?”
“Oh! then — some time or other we shall be happy to hear you. Our instrument is a capital one, probably superior to —— You shall try it some day. Do your sisters play and sing?”
“Why did not you all learn? You ought all to have learned. The Miss Webbs all play, and their father has not so good an income as yours. Do you draw?”
“What, none of you?”
“That is very strange. But I suppose you had no opportunity. Your mother should have taken you to town every spring for the benefit of masters.”
“Has your governess left you?”
“No governess! How was that possible? Five daughters brought up at home without a governess! I never heard of such a thing. Your mother must have been quite a slave to your education.”
“Then, who taught you? who attended to you? Without a governess you must have been neglected.”
“Aye, no doubt; but that is what a governess will prevent, and if I had known your mother, I should have advised her most strenuously to engage one. I always say that nothing is to be done in education without steady and regular instruction, and nobody but a governess can give it. It is wonderful how many families I have been the means of supplying in that way. I am always glad to get a young person well placed out. Four nieces of Mrs. Jenkinson are most delightfully situated through my means; and it was but the other day that I recommended another young person, who was merely accidentally mentioned to me, and the family are quite delighted with her. Mrs. Collins, did I tell you of Lady Metcalf's calling yesterday to thank me? She finds Miss Pope a treasure.
said she,
Are any of your younger sisters out, Miss Bennet?”
“All! What, all five out at once? Very odd! And you only the second. The younger ones out before the elder ones are married! Your younger sisters must be very young?”
“Upon my word,”
“you give your opinion very decidedly for so young a person. Pray, what is your age?”
“You cannot be more than twenty, I am sure, therefore you need not conceal your age.”
Mrs. Collins's joints of meat were too large for her family.
“What is that you are saying, Fitzwilliam? What is it you are talking of? What are you telling Miss Bennet? Let me hear what it is.”
“Of music! Then pray speak aloud. It is of all subjects my delight. I must have my share in the conversation if you are speaking of music. There are few people in England, I suppose, who have more true enjoyment of music than myself, or a better natural taste. If I had ever learnt, I should have been a great proficient. And so would Anne, if her health had allowed her to apply. I am confident that she would have performed delightfully. How does Georgiana get on, Darcy?”
“I am very glad to hear such a good account of her,”
“and pray tell her from me, that she cannot expect to excel if she does not practice a good deal.”
“So much the better. It cannot be done too much; and when I next write to her, I shall charge her not to neglect it on any account. I often tell young ladies that no excellence in music is to be acquired without constant practice. I have told Miss Bennet several times, that she will never play really well unless she practises more; and though Mrs. Collins has no instrument, she is very welcome, as I have often told her, to come to Rosings every day, and play on the pianoforte in Mrs. Jenkinson's room. She would be in nobody's way, you know, in that part of the house.”
what they were talking of.
“Miss Bennet would not play at all amiss if she practised more, and could have the advantage of a London master. She has a very good notion of fingering, though her taste is not equal to Anne's. Anne would have been a delightful performer, had her health allowed her to learn.”
she felt herself so dull as to make her very desirous of having them all to dine with her.
“I assure you, I feel it exceedingly,”
“I believe no one feels the loss of friends so much as I do. But I am particularly attached to these young men, and know them to be so much attached to me! They were excessively sorry to go! But so they always are. The dear Colonel rallied his spirits tolerably till just at last; but Darcy seemed to feel it most acutely, more I think, than last year. His attachment to Rosings certainly increases.”
she did not like to go home again so soon,
“But if that is the case, you must write to your mother and beg that you may stay a little longer. Mrs. Collins will be very glad of your company, I am sure.”
“Why, at that rate, you will have been here only six weeks. I expected you to stay two months. I told Mrs. Collins so before you came. There can be no occasion for your going so soon. Mrs. Bennet could certainly spare you for another fortnight.”
“Oh! your father of course may spare you, if your mother can. Daughters are never of so much consequence to a father. And if you will stay another month complete, it will be in my power to take one of you as far as London, for I am going there early in June, for a week; and as Dawson does not object to the barouche-box, there will be very good room for one of you — and indeed, if the weather should happen to be cool, I should not object to taking you both, as you are neither of you large.”
“Mrs. Collins, you must send a servant with them. You know I always speak my mind, and I cannot bear the idea of two young women travelling post by themselves. It is highly improper. You must contrive to send somebody. I have the greatest dislike in the world to that sort of thing. Young women should always be properly guarded and attended, according to their situation in life. When my niece Georgiana went to Ramsgate last summer, I made a point of her having two men-servants go with her .— Miss Darcy, the daughter of Mr. Darcy, of Pemberley, and Lady Anne, could not have appeared with propriety in a different manner. I am excessively attentive to all those things. You must send John with the young ladies, Mrs. Collins. I am glad it occurred to me to mention it; for it would really be discreditable to you to let them go alone.”
“Oh! Your uncle! He keeps a man-servant, does he? I am very glad you have somebody who thinks of these things. Where shall you change horses? Oh! Bromley, of course. If you mention my name at the Bell, you will be attended to.”
into the particulars of their journey,
the best method of packing,
on the necessity of placing gowns in the only right way,
a good journey,
to come to Hunsford again next year;
he was,
“But we expect him to-morrow, with a large party of friends.”
it was a picture of a young gentleman, the son of her late master's steward, who had been brought up by him at his own expense.
“He is now gone into the army,”
“but I am afraid he has turned out very wild.”
“And that,”
“is my master — and very like him. It was drawn at the same time as the other — about eight years ago.”
“Does that young lady know Mr. Darcy?”
“And do not you think him a very handsome gentleman, ma'am?”