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\Studyworld\ Studyworld Studynotes \ Pride and Prejudice:
Chapters 4, 5, and 6

Chapter 4

Later that night, Jane admits to her sister how much she likes Bingley, what a fine man he turned out to be, and how surprised she was that he asked her to dance. Lizzy affirms the praise of Mr. Bingley, and tells her sister that she is not surprised that Bingley chose her, as Jane was so much more beautiful than anyone else in the room. She also notes that Jane is not only able to find the good in everyone, but often attributes even more good than some people deserve. The Bingley sisters, for instance, did not have manners as good as those of their brother, but Jane still found them "pleasing," and is happy to discover that they will remain at Netherfield with her brother. Lizzy, however, notices that the Bingley sisters' behavior is very "calculated," and that at closer look, they prove to be standoffish and proud.
The chapter also gives a bit of history on Bingley and Darcy. Lizzy expresses surprise that the Bingley women are so haughty, given that their fortune comes from trade, which is considered "new money." To raise their rank, the Bingleys pressure their brother to buy an estate. Their brother, however, is quite content to stay at the rented Netherfield. Austen explains that Bingley and Darcy are close friends, a bond strengthened by their opposite nature. Darcy is very smart, while Bingley is not stupid, but certainly not clever; Darcy sees only the bad in people, Bingley is impressed with almost everyone he meets. Darcy thinks Jane is pretty but smiles too much, while Bingley, clearly smitten with the eldest Bennet daughter, looks to his sisters for approval, who consider her a "sweet girl."

Chapter 5

Near Longbourn, the village in which the Bennets are the most prominent family, lives a family named Lucas. Like Bingley, Sir William Lucas earned his fortune in trade, but was later given a knighthood. His wife, Lady Lucas, is a good friend of Mrs. Bennet's and her oldest daughter, Charlotte, is a close friend of Lizzy's. The morning after the ball, Lady Lucas brings her children over to Longbourn to discuss the previous night's activities. Talk instantly centers on Mr. Bingley. Mrs. Bennet pretends to be unaware that Bingley showed a particular interest in Jane, or that he asked her to dance twice. They begin to gossip about the fact that Charlotte overheard Bingley say that he thought Jane Bennet to be the prettiest woman in the room. They then direct their attention to Elizabeth, lamenting the fact that she had to overhear the rude Mr. Darcy speaking ill of her. During this conversation, Elizabeth is often referred to as Eliza, something the Lucases do throughout the book. Lizzy admits that she might have been able to forgive his pride had he not offended her own pride. Finally, the women consider the difference between vanity and pride - "pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us."

Chapter 6

The Bennet women visit the Bingleys, and their visit is returned. Bingley's sisters soon determine that Jane and Lizzy have pleasing manners and are worth getting to know; their mother and younger sisters, however, are "not worth talking to." Jane is pleased that they like her, whereas Lizzy is wary of their selectivity. Mr. Bingley and Jane, meanwhile, have become very fond of each other. Despite her affection, Jane tries to contain her emotions, a move that Charlotte thinks is unwise. Charlotte also warns "happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance." She thinks that there would be no difference between Jane marrying Bingley tomorrow and waiting a year to get to know him. Lizzy only laughs.
So caught up in her sister's romantic saga, she has failed to notice that Darcy has started to change his mind about her. He seems to have noticed her dark, "intelligent" eyes, and enjoys her playful attitude. He longs to get to know her better, and gets his opportunity at a party at the Lucases' house. Lizzy notices that Darcy is listening in on a conversation she is having, and Charlotte dares her to confront him about it. She does, playfully, and then Charlotte asks her to play the piano and sing for the group. Again, Lizzy complies, giving a mediocre, but enjoyable, performance. She is succeeded by her younger sister, Mary. Dancing begins, and Sir Lucas starts a conversation with Darcy. As Elizabeth Bennet walks by, Sir Lucas declares that Darcy should ask her to dance. Darcy asks for her hand, Lizzy refuses, and walks away. Mr. Bingley's younger sister - Miss Bingley - then sidles up next to Darcy and tells him she understands what is bothering him. Clearly he also despises the people at this party, their noise, and their self-importance. Darcy replies that she is wrong, that all he is thinking of is the beautiful pair of eyes he has just seen - those of Elizabeth Bennet. Miss Bingley laughs at him, and teases him about his "mother-in-law," the insufferable Mrs. Bennet.

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Historical Context
Main Characters
Points to Ponder
Did You Know
Plot Summary
Chapters 1, 2, and 3
Chapters 4, 5, and 6
Chapters 7 and 8
Chapters 9 ,10, and 11
Chapters 12, 13, and 14
Chapters 15 and 16
Chapters 17, 18, and 19
Chapters 20, 21, and 22
Chapters 23, 24, and 25
Chapters 26, 27, and 28
Chapters 29, 30, and 31
Chapters 32, 33, and 34
Chapter 35
Chapters 36, 37, and 38
Chapters 39 and 40
Chapters 41 and 42
Chapters 43 and 44
Chapters 45 and 46
Chapters 47 and 48
Chapters 49 and 50
Chapters 51 and 52
Chapters 53, 54, and 55
Chapters 56 and 57
Chapters 58 and 59
Chapters 60 and 61


 

 



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