Pride and Prejudice

‘You go to Brighton!’ cried her father. 'I would not trust you within twenty kilometres of the place, for fifty pounds! No, Kitty, I have at last learnt to be cautious, …

The above sentences in PRIDE AND PREJUDICE describe how Mr Bennet responded to Kitty’s comment. I wonder what “twenty kilometres” and “fifty pounds” mean in this context. Could someone tell me what these words mean?

Dear Reader, his intentions were good…

Brighton had such a reputation of being a ‘fast’ place that his giddy daughter surely would get into some kind of trouble or the other. He would, therefore, not allow her to come nearer to Brighton than a minimum distance 20 kilometres away (I wonder why it didn’t say miles). Even if you gave him £50 Sterling he would not allow her to go!

The basic idea of this phrase is that Mr. Bennet doesn’t trust Brighton, and that distrust is emphasized by the use of "twenty kilometres…fifty pounds). The statement can be deeply read as:

Mr. Bennet would not trust Brighton even at a distance (twenty kilometres) and
Mr. Bennet would not even trust Brighton if someone paid him fifty pounds to do so.

I hope this helps ^_^.

Thank you, SanneT and Kamui.
Am I right in thinking that Jane Austen wanted to describe the following things?

  1. Mr Bennet think that his daughters would be influenced by the culture of Brighton, if they were within twenty kilometres of the place(Brighton).
  2. Getting fifty pounds would not change his mind.

Mr Bennet think → Mr Bennet thinks

The text that I am reading is not the original. It is a version retold by Clare West, one of OXFORD BOOKWORMS.

Yes, you are spot on. Brighton’s culture would be a bad influence on his giddy daughter the nearer she gets to the town and even if one gave him £50 (which was a lot of money then) he would not change his mind. So he had a strong prejudice against Brighton and its culture - well founded, as we later read…

I think that SanneT is always spot-on with her comment.

Kitty is an outrageous flirt, in the days when flirting with young men could destroy a girl’s reputation. At Bath there would be balls and public events every night, attended by officers and other fashionable but not too respectable young men. Kitty would be sure to get herself a name for behaving “improperly” one way or another.

The original doesn’t say kilometres.

Just I began to look multi-series film “Pride and Prejudice” in English (original sound). Earlier I read the book and looked film in Russian translation. I like so much this book and film!

@ Helen: Bath would have been the safer bet, it was Brighton that was her undoing. As you know, it still has quite a reputation. I am lucky not to live too far from it for when I need a change of air.

I once visited Bath when I was staying in London, but could not see the famous Roman Baths because I was supposed to participate in a convention held in Bath, that is, not in a Roman Bath, in 1989. I have not visited either Brighton or Blackpool. I want to stroll along Brighton Pier. I don’t know if there is a pier in Blackpool.

Brighton is a very “fast” place and my husband won’t take me there in case I get corrupted :wink: In Austen’s day It was very popular with the “fast” Prince Regent / King George 4 who built his Royal Pavilion there. I bet some of his parties got a bit lively :wink:

There is a pier at Hastings, which is a more respectable place than Brighton. Here is a picture: There’s a nice cafe at the end.

Yesterday, I finished reading Pride and Prejudice. I expected its sad ending, but it ended as a happy story. At that time I felt relieved, but, after 24 hours, l think that it should not have ended like that. I might be envious of Elizabeth and Darcy for their happiness.

Far from the Madding Crowd by Thomas Hardy was different. It described cruel realities of life, and I enjoyed his fatalistic point of view.

Do you want to read happy stories or sad stories?

With time, I find myself less inclined into reading fiction, sad or happy, but more into the reading about real events or subjects ( like history, popular science, biographies, politics) Otherwise I may have an uncomfortable feeling of wasting the time. Probably I am getting old -:slight_smile:

I will think about your comment tomorrow. Good night!

I can understand what you say. But, I sometimes want to escape to a different world. The imagination of good novelists is marvelous; some of them risk their lives in writing novels. Usually I enjoy reading the books that were written by the people who are older than I am.

I agree with you actually Yutaka. More than that, I even enjoy reading the books that were written by the people who are already dead ;-).

They risked their lives indeed.