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\Studyworld\ Studyworld Studynotes \ Pride and Prejudice:
Chapters 41 and 42

Chapter 41

The next week, the officers' last in Meryton, is colored by dejection. All the girls in town, particularly Kitty and Lydia, make their misery entirely evident. Mrs. Bennet and her two young daughters suggest that time at Brighton is all they need to life their spirits, and it appears that life at Longbourn will be miserable until they get their way. Lydia, however, is soon invited by the wife of the colonel of the regiment, Mrs. Forster, to join her in Brighton. Lizzy secretly advises her father not to let Lydia go, stressing that her sister's improper behavior is only going to get worse in Brighton. Her father replies that Lydia is bound to "expose herself" at some time or another, so now is just as good a time as any other. Lizzy warns her father that he is not fully aware of how Lydia's actions affect the rest of the family, and Mr. Bennet wants to know what harm she has done Lizzy. She says that she does not have any particular examples, but that, in general, it is not good for her sisters when Lydia appears in public. She warns that Lydia is soon to be beyond all hope, that Catherine will undoubtedly follow, and that the other three sisters will be included in the disgrace. Mr. Bennet assures his daughter that she and Jane will always be respected, and that Lydia will be unbearable if he does not let her go. Lizzy resigns herself to the fact, but is not happy.
A week later, on his last night in Meryton, Mr. Wickham dines with several other officers at Longbourn. Wickham is alarmed to find out that Lizzy met Colonel Fitzwilliam and spend more time with Darcy. Elizabeth makes it evident that she knows the truth of Wickham's past. He departs with the other officers, and Lydia returns to Meryton with Mrs. Forster, as they will all travel to Brighton in the morning. Lydia's departure is noisy and embarrassing, as Kitty cries out of jealousy and Lydia makes a big show of leaving her family.

Chapter 42

The chapter begins with an explanation of the Bennets' marriage. Apparently, Mr. Bennet had been captivated by a very beautiful young Mrs. Bennet, but soon into the marriage had grown tired of her behavior and ended his affection for her. He buried himself in his interests, and paid little attention or respect to his wife. Lizzy had always overlooked her father's tendency to ignore both her mother and, often, the entire family, as he showed such a preference for her.
Bored with Longbourn, Lizzy looks forward only to her upcoming trip with the Gardiners, and wishes Jane could join her on the visit. Lydia hardly writes to her family, and even the few letters she sends are only full of information on all the officers she sees and all the new gowns she has gotten. Her longer letters to Kitty are full of information a little too illicit to share. A letter arrives from the Gardiners, saying that they will have to shorten their trip, and plan to go to Dervyshire. Elizabeth is disappointed, but remembers that Derbyshire is the location of Pemberley, home of Darcy. Finally, the Gardiner family arrives at Longbourn. They leave their four children under Jane's care, and leave the next morning with Lizzy. They travel throughout the area, and have gotten very close to their destination, a town called Lambton, where Mrs. Gardiner used to live, when they near Pemberley. Mrs. Gardiner says she longs to see it, and believes Lizzy should also be curious about the estate. Lizzy agrees to go, but blushes at the thought of Darcy coming across them touring his estate. A maid assures Lizzy that the entire family is away for the summer, and she finally gives in to her own curiosity to see the home. The next morning, the group decides to pay their visit.

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Historical Context
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Points to Ponder
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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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