Jane Austen Quotes

We've searched our database for all the quotes and captions related to Jane Austen. Here they are! All 200 of them:

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The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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A lady's imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of any thing than of a book! -- When I have a house of my own, I shall be miserable if I have not an excellent library.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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In vain have I struggled. It will not do. My feelings will not be repressed. You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.
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Jane Austen (Pride And Prejudice)
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I do not want people to be very agreeable, as it saves me the trouble of liking them a great deal.
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Jane Austen (Jane Austen's Letters)
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The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Angry people are not always wise.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I hate to hear you talk about all women as if they were fine ladies instead of rational creatures. None of us want to be in calm waters all our lives.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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but for my own part, if a book is well written, I always find it too short.
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Jane Austen
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You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope...I have loved none but you.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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What are men to rocks and mountains?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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There is a stubbornness about me that never can bear to be frightened at the will of others. My courage always rises at every attempt to intimidate me.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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There are few people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well. The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of merit or sense.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Vanity and pride are different things, though the words are often used synonymously. A person may be proud without being vain. Pride relates more to our opinion of ourselves, vanity to what we would have others think of us.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I could easily forgive his pride, if he had not mortified mine.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Ah! There is nothing like staying at home, for real comfort.
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Jane Austen
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I must learn to be content with being happier than I deserve.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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How I wish I lived in a Jane Austen novel!
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Dodie Smith (I Capture the Castle)
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The Very first moment I beheld him, my heart was irrevocably gone.
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Jane Austen (Love and Friendship)
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It isn't what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Silly things do cease to be silly if they are done by sensible people in an impudent way.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Friendship is certainly the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love.
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Jane Austen
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Laugh as much as you choose, but you will not laugh me out of my opinion.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I have not the pleasure of understanding you.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I may have lost my heart, but not my self-control.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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When I fall in love, it will be forever.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility: The Screenplay)
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I am the happiest creature in the world. Perhaps other people have said so before, but not one with such justice. I am happier even than Jane; she only smiles, I laugh.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Give a girl an education and introduce her properly into the world, and ten to one but she has the means of settling well, without further expense to anybody.
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Jane Austen
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For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors, and laugh at them in our turn?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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You are too generous to trifle with me. If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes are unchanged; but one word from you will silence me on this subject for ever.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I haven't any right to criticize books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticize Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Every time I read Pride and Prejudice I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone.
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Mark Twain
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I always deserve the best treatment because I never put up with any other.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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You must learn some of my philosophy. Think only of the past as its remembrance gives you pleasure.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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My idea of good company...is the company of clever, well-informed people, who have a great deal of conversation; that is what I call good company.' 'You are mistaken,' said he gently, 'that is not good company, that is the best.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Life seems but a quick succession of busy nothings.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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Till this moment I never knew myself.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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We all know him to be a proud, unpleasant sort of man; but this would be nothing if you really liked him.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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He is a gentleman, and I am a gentleman's daughter. So far we are equal.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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If I could but know his heart, everything would become easy.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you. -Mr. Darcy
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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A girl likes to be crossed a little in love now and then. It is something to think of
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Seldom, very seldom, does complete truth belong to any human disclosure; seldom can it happen that something is not a little disguised or a little mistaken.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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An unhappy alternative is before you, Elizabeth. From this day you must be a stranger to one of your parents. Your mother will never see you again if you do not marry Mr. Collins, and I will never see you again if you do.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Her heart did whisper that he had done it for her.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Nothing ever fatigues me, but doing what I do not like.
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Jane Austen
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The distance is nothing when one has a motive.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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There could have been no two hearts so open, no tastes so similar, no feelings so in unison
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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What strange creatures brothers are!
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Jane Austen
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I wish, as well as everybody else, to be perfectly happy; but, like everybody else, it must be in my own way.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Know your own happiness. You want nothing but patience- or give it a more fascinating name, call it hope.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading! How much sooner one tires of anything than of a book!
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Jane Austen
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Run mad as often as you choose, but do not faint!
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Jane Austen (Love and Friendship)
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It is only a novel... or, in short, only some work in which the greatest powers of the mind are displayed, in which the most thorough knowledge of human nature, the happiest delineation of its varieties, the liveliest effusions of wit and humour, are conveyed to the world in the best-chosen language
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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I cannot make speeches, Emma...If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me. I have blamed you, and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Oh, Lizzy! do anything rather than marry without affection.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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There is, I believe, in every disposition a tendency to some particular evil, a natural defect, which not even the best education can overcome." "And your defect is a propensity to hate everybody." "And yours," he replied with a smile, "is wilfully to misunderstand them.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Mary wished to say something very sensible, but knew not how.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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There are people, who the more you do for them, the less they will do for themselves.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Nobody can tell what I suffer! But it is always so. Those who do not complain are never pitied.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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A woman, especially if she have the misfortune of knowing anything, should conceal it as well as she can.
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Jane Austen
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From the very beginningβ€” from the first moment, I may almost sayβ€” of my acquaintance with you, your manners, impressing me with the fullest belief of your arrogance, your conceit, and your selfish disdain of the feelings of others, were such as to form the groundwork of disapprobation on which succeeding events have built so immovable a dislike; and I had not known you a month before I felt that you were the last man in the world whom I could ever be prevailed on to marry.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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One half of the world cannot understand the pleasures of the other.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Which of all my important nothings shall I tell you first?
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Jane Austen
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She was sensible and clever, but eager in everything; her sorrows, her joys, could have no moderation.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility: The Screenplay)
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She is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me, and I am in no humor at present to give consequence to young ladies who are slighted by other men.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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It is not everyone,' said Elinor, 'who has your passion for dead leaves.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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How quick come the reasons for approving what we like.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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It is not time or opportunity that is to determine intimacy;β€”it is disposition alone. Seven years would be insufficient to make some people acquainted with each other, and seven days are more than enough for others.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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I waited patiently - years - for the pendulum to swing the other way, for men to start reading Jane Austen, learn how to knit, pretend to love cosmos, organize scrapbook parties, and make out with each other while we leer. And then we'd say, Yeah, he's a Cool Guy.
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Gillian Flynn (Gone Girl)
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It's been many years since I had such an exemplary vegetable.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Stupid men are the only ones worth knowing after all.
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Jane Austen
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I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant. You alone have brought me to Bath. For you alone, I think and plan. Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice when they would be lost on others. Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice, indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating, in F. W. I must go, uncertain of my fate; but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look, will be enough to decide whether I enter your father's house this evening or never.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Without music, life would be a blank to me.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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...when pain is over, the remembrance of it often becomes a pleasure.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Better be without sense than misapply it as you do.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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You must be the best judge of your own happiness.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I have faults enough, but they are not, I hope, of understanding. My temper I dare not vouch for. It is, I believe, too little yieldingβ€” certainly too little for the convenience of the world. I cannot forget the follies and vices of other so soon as I ought, nor their offenses against myself. My feelings are not puffed about with every attempt to move them. My temper would perhaps be called resentful. My good opinion once lost, is lost forever.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I come here with no expectations, only to profess, now that I am at liberty to do so, that my heart is and always will be...yours.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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All the privilege I claim for my own sex (it is not a very enviable one: you need not covet it), is that of loving longest, when existence or when hope is gone!
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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I will be calm. I will be mistress of myself.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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I certainly have not the talent which some people possess," said Darcy, "of conversing easily with those I have never seen before. I cannot catch their tone of conversation, or appear interested in their concerns, as I often see done.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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One man's ways may be as good as another's, but we all like our own best.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Had I been in love, I could not have been more wretchedly blind. But vanity, not love, has been my folly.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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If adventures will not befall a young lady in her own village, she must seek them abroad.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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Mary-Lynnette: "You have not read 'Pride and Prejudice'." Ash: "Why not?" Mary-Lynnette: "Because Jane Austen was a human." Ash: "How do you know?" Mary-Lynnette: "Well Jane Austen was a woman, and you're a chauvinist pig." Ash: "Yes, well, that I can't argue.
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L.J. Smith
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I am only resolved to act in that manner, which will, in my own opinion, constitute my happiness, without reference to you, or to any person so wholly unconnected with me.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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But people themselves alter so much, that there is something new to be observed in them for ever.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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A man does not recover from such devotion of the heart to such a woman! He ought not; he does not.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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There is no charm equal to tenderness of heart.
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Jane Austen
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I cannot speak well enough to be unintelligible.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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She hoped to be wise and reasonable in time; but alas! Alas! She must confess to herself that she was not wise yet.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Time will explain.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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I am excessively diverted.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Elinor agreed to it all, for she did not think he deserved the compliment of rational opposition.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Let us never underestimate the power of a well-written letter.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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I always advise children who ask me for tips on being a writer to read as much as they possibly can. Jane Austen gave a young friend the same advice, so I'm in good company there.
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J.K. Rowling
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Follies and nonsense, whims and inconsistencies do divert me, I own, and I laugh at them whenever I can.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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To wish was to hope, and to hope was to expect
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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If a book is well written, I always find it too short.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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We have all a better guide in ourselves, if we would attend to it, than any other person can be.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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She was convinced that she could have been happy with him, when it was no longer likely they should meet.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Selfishness must always be forgiven you know, because there is no hope of a cure.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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Now be sincere; did you admire me for my impertinence?" "For the liveliness of your mind, I did.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Nothing is more deceitful," said Darcy, "than the appearance of humility. It is often only carelessness of opinion, and sometimes an indirect boast.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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No man is offended by another man's admiration of the woman he loves; it is the woman only who can make it a torment.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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I am determined that only the deepest love will induce me into matrimony. So, I shall end an old maid, and teach your ten children to embroider cushions and play their instruments very ill.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Men of sense, whatever you may choose to say, do not want silly wives.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I do not think I ever opened a book in my life which had not something to say upon woman's inconstancy. Songs and proverbs, all talk of woman's fickleness. But perhaps you will say, these were all written by men." "Perhaps I shall. Yes, yes, if you please, no reference to examples in books. Men have had every advantage of us in telling their own story. Education has been theirs in so much higher a degree; the pen has been in their hands. I will not allow books to prove anything.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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I was quiet, but I was not blind.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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Do not consider me now as an elegant female intending to plague you, but as a rational creature speaking the truth from her heart.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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When, however, one reads of a witch being ducked, of a woman possessed by devils, of a wise woman selling herbs, or even of a very remarkable man who had a mother, then I think we are on the track of a lost novelist, a suppressed poet, of some mute and inglorious Jane Austen, some Emily Bronte who dashed her brains out on the moor or mopped and mowed about the highways crazed with the torture that her gift had put her to. Indeed, I would venture to guess that Anon, who wrote so many poems without signing them, was often a woman.
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Virginia Woolf (A Room of One's Own)
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Now they were as strangers; worse than strangers, for they could never become acquainted.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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All my life I thought that the story was over when the hero and heroine were safely engaged -- after all, what's good enough for Jane Austen ought to be good enough for anyone. But it's a lie. The story is about to begin, and every day will be a new piece of the plot.
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Mary Ann Shaffer (The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society)
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Were I to fall in love, indeed, it would be a different thing; but I have never been in love ; it is not my way, or my nature; and I do not think I ever shall.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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They walked on, without knowing in what direction. There was too much to be thought, and felt, and said, for attention to any other objects.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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One cannot be always laughing at a man without now and then stumbling on something witty.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Do not give way to useless alarm; though it is right to be prepared for the worst, there is no occasion to look on it as certain.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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She was stronger alone…
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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One word from you shall silence me forever.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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She had been forced into prudence in her youth, she learned romance as she grew older: the natural sequel of an unnatural beginning.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Oh! I am delighted with the book! I should like to spend my whole life in reading it.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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I might as well enquire,” replied she, β€œwhy with so evident a design of offending and insulting me, you chose to tell me that you liked me against your will, against your reason, and even against your character?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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A fondness for reading, properly directed, must be an education in itself.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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You have bewitched me body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you. And wish from this day forth never to be parted from you.
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Deborah Moggach (Pride & Prejudice screenplay)
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Indeed, I am very sorry to be right in this instance. I would much rather have been merry than wise.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Could there be finer symptoms? Is not general incivility the very essence of love?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I never wish to offend, but I am so foolishly shy, that I often seem negligent, when I am only kept back by my natural awkwardness. [...] Shyness is only the effect of a sense of inferiority in some way or other. If I could persuade myself that my manners were perfectly easy and graceful, I should not be shy.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Can he love her? Can the soul really be satisfied with such polite affections? To love is to burn - to be on fire, like Juliet or Guinevere or Eloise...
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Emma Thompson (The Sense and Sensibility Screenplay and Diaries: Bringing Jane Austen's Novel to Film)
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Know your own happiness.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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We do not suffer by accident.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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To look almost pretty is an acquisition of higher delight to a girl who has been looking plain the first fifteen years of her life than a beauty from her cradle can ever receive.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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From all that I can collect by your manner of talking, you must be two of the silliest girls in the country. I have suspected it some time, but I am now convinced.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Her own thoughts and reflections were habitually her best companions.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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A person who can write a long letter with ease, cannot write ill.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Anne hoped she had outlived the age of blushing; but the age of emotion she certainly had not.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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It is happy for you that you possess the talent of flattering with delicacy. May I ask whether these pleasing attentions proceed from the impulse of the moment, or are they the result of previous study?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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It would be mortifying to the feelings of many ladies, could they be made to understand how little the heart of a man is affected by what is costly or new in their attire... Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. No man will admire her the more, no woman will like her the better for it. Neatness and fashion are enough for the former, and a something of shabbiness or impropriety will be most endearing to the latter.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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Do not be in a hurry, the right man will come at last
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Yes, vanity is a weakness indeed. But pride - where there is a real superiority of mind, pride will be always under good regulation.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Vanity working on a weak head produces every sort of mischief.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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She was one of those, who, having, once begun, would be always in love.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I lay it down as a general rule, Harriet, that if a woman doubts as to whether she should accept a man or not, she certainly ought to refuse him.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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There are as many forms of love as there are moments in time.
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Jane Austen
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Beware how you give your heart.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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Mr. Knightley, if I have not spoken, it is because I am afraid I will awaken myself from this dream.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I have been used to consider poetry as "the food of love" said Darcy. "Of a fine, stout, healthy love it may. Everything nourishes what is strong already. But if it be only a slight, thin sort of inclination, I am convinced that one good sonnet will starve it entirely away.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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You are mistaken, Mr. Darcy, if you suppose that the mode of your declaration affected me in any other way, than as it spared the concern which I might have felt in refusing you, had you behaved in a more gentlemanlike manner." (Elizabeth Bennett)
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Do not let the behavior of others destroy your inner peace.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Every moment has its pleasures and its hope.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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How is it that, a full two centuries after Jane Austen finished her manuscript, we come to the world of Pride and Prejudice and find ourselves transcending customs, strictures, time, mores, to arrive at a place that educates, amuses, and enthralls us? It is a miracle. We read in bed because reading is halfway between life and dreaming, our own consciousness in someone else's mind.
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Anna Quindlen (How Reading Changed My Life)
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To sit in the shade on a fine day, and look upon verdure is the most perfect refreshment.
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Jane Austen
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Always resignation and acceptance. Always prudence and honour and duty. Elinor, where is your heart?
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Adieu to disappointment and spleen. What are men to rocks and mountains?
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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I dearly love a laugh... I hope I never ridicule what is wise or good. Follies and nonsense, whims and inconsistencies do divert me, I own, and I laugh at them whenever I can.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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It's such a happiness when good people get together.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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I assure you. I have no notion of treating men with such respect. That is the way to spoil them.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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[I]t is well to have as many holds upon happiness as possible.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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If I could not be persuaded into doing what I thought wrong, I will never be tricked into it.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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Let us have the luxury of silence.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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Indulge your imagination in every possible flight.
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Jane Austen
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To you I shall say, as I have often said before, Do not be in a hurry, the right man will come at last...
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Jane Austen (Jane Austen's Letters)
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Eleanor went to her room "where she was free to think and be wretched.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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How little of permanent happiness could belong to a couple who were only brought together because their passions were stronger than their virtue.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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His cold politeness, his ceremonious grace, were worse than anything.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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Think only of the past as its remembrance gives you pleasure.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and everyday confirms my belief of the inconsistencies of all human characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the appearance of merit or sense.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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But indeed I would rather have nothing but tea.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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Business, you know, may bring money, but friendship hardly ever does.
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Badly done, Emma!
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Every savage can dance.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Arriving late was a way of saying that your own time was more valuable than the time of the person who waited for you.
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Karen Joy Fowler (The Jane Austen Book Club)
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I could not be happy with a man whose taste did not in every point coincide with my own. He must enter in all my feelings; the same books, the same music must charm us both.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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I have been a selfish being all my life, in practice, though not in principle. As a child I was taught what was right, but I was not taught to correct my temper. I was given good principles, but left to follow them in pride and conceit. Unfortunately an only son (for many years an only child), I was spoilt by my parents, who, though good themselves (my father, particularly, all that was benevolent and amiable), allowed, encouraged, almost taught me to be selfish and overbearing; to care for none beyond my own family circle; to think meanly of all the rest of the world; to wish at least to think meanly of their sense and worth compared with my own. Such I was, from eight to eight and twenty; and such I might still have been but for you, dearest, loveliest Elizabeth! What do I not owe you! You taught me a lesson, hard indeed at first, but most advantageous. By you, I was properly humbled. I came to you without a doubt of my reception. You showed me how insufficient were all my pretensions to please a woman worthy of being pleased.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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They were within twenty yards of each other, and so abrupt was his appearance, that it was impossible to avoid his sight. Their eyes instantly met, and the cheeks of each were overspread with the deepest blush. He absolutely started, and for a moment seemed immoveable from surprise; but shortly recovering himself, advanced towards the party, and spoke to Elizabeth, if not in terms of perfect composure, at least of perfect civility.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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for he is such a disagreeable man, that it would be quite a misfortune to be liked by him.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Why not seize the pleasure at once? -- How often is happiness destroyed by preparation, foolish preparation!
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Jane Austen (Emma)
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Obstinate, headstrong girl!
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Her pleasure in the walk must arise from the exercise and the day, from the view of the last smiles of the year upon the tawny leaves and withered hedges, and from repeating to herself some few of the thousand poetical descriptions extant of autumn--that season of peculiar and inexhaustible influence on the mind of taste and tenderness--that season which has drawn from every poet worthy of being read some attempt at description, or some lines of feeling.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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There will be little rubs and disappointments everywhere, and we are all apt to expect too much; but then, if one scheme of happiness fails, human nature turns to another; if the first calculation is wrong, we make a second better: we find comfort somewhere.
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Jane Austen (Mansfield Park)
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No young lady can be justified in falling in love before the gentleman's love is declared, it must be very improper that a young lady should dream of a gentleman before the gentleman is first known to have dreamt of her.
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Jane Austen
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Mr. Bennet, how can you abuse your own children in such a way? You take delight in vexing me. You have no compassion for my poor nerves. "You mistake me, my dear. I have a high respect for your nerves. They are my old friends. I have heard you mention them with consideration these last twenty years at least.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Dear Diary, Today I tried not to think about Mr. Knightly. I tried not to think about him when I discussed the menu with Cook... I tried not to think about him in the garden where I thrice plucked the petals off a daisy to acertain his feelings for Harriet. I don't think we should keep daisies in the garden, they really are a drab little flower. And I tried not to think about him when I went to bed, but something had to be done.
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Jane Austen
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She was heartily ashamed of her ignorance - a misplaced shame. Where people wish to attach, they should always be ignorant. To come with a wellβˆ’informed mind is to come with an inability of administering to the vanity of others, which a sensible person would always wish to avoid. A woman especially, if she have the misfortune of knowing anything, should conceal it as well as she can.
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Jane Austen (Northanger Abbey)
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You either choose this method of passing the evening because you are in each other's confidence, and have secret affairs to discuss, or because you are conscious that your figures appear to the greatest advantage in walking;β€” if the first, I should be completely in your way, and if the second, I can admire you much better as I sit by the fire.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Elizabeth's spirit's soon rising to playfulness again, she wanted Mr. Darcy to account for his having ever fallen in love with her. 'How could you begin?' said she. 'I can comprehend your going on charmingly, when you had once made a beginning; but what could set you off in the first place?' 'I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look, or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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How despicably I have acted!" she cried; "I, who have prided myself on my discernment! I, who have valued myself on my abilities! who have often disdained the generous candour of my sister, and gratified my vanity in useless or blameable mistrust! How humiliating is this discovery! Yet, how just a humiliation! Had I been in love, I could not have been more wretchedly blind. But vanity, not love, has been my folly. Pleased with the preference of one, and offended by the neglect of the other, on the very beginning of our aquaintance, I have courted prepossession and ignorance, and driven reason away, where either were concerned. Till this moment I never knew myself.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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Occupied in observing Mr. Bingley’s attentions to her sister, Elizabeth was far from suspecting that she was herself becoming an object of some interest in the eyes of his friend. Mr. Darcy had at first scarcely allowed her to be pretty: he had looked at her without admiration at the ball; and when they next met, he looked at her only to criticise. But no sooner had he made it clear to himself and his friends that she had hardly a good feature in her face, than he began to find it was rendered uncommonly intelligent by the beautiful expression of her dark eyes. To this discovery succeeded some others equally mortifying. Though he had detected with a critical eye more than one failure of perfect symmetry in her form, he was forced to acknowledge her figure to be light and pleasing; and in spite of his asserting that her manners were not those of the fashionable world, he was caught by their easy playfulness. Of this she was perfectly unaware: to her he was only the man who made himself agreeable nowhere, and who had not thought her handsome enough to dance with.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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What do you know of my heart? What do you know of anything but your own suffering. For weeks, Marianne, I've had this pressing on me without being at liberty to speak of it to a single creature. It was forced on me by the very person whose prior claims ruined all my hope. I have endured her exultations again and again whilst knowing myself to be divided from Edward forever. Believe me, Marianne, had I not been bound to silence I could have provided proof enough of a broken heart, even for you.
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Jane Austen (Sense and Sensibility)
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Happiness in marriage is entirely a matter of chance. If the dispositions of the parties are ever so well known to each other or ever so similar beforehand, it does not advance their felicity in the least. They always continue to grow sufficiently unlike afterwards to have their share of vexation; and it is better to know as little as possible of the defects of the person with whom you are to pass your life.
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Jane Austen (Pride And Prejudice)
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She began now to comprehend that he was exactly the man who, in disposition and talents, would most suit her. His understanding and temper, though unlike her own, would have answered all her wishes. It was an union that must have been to the advantage of both: by her ease and liveliness, his mind might have been softened, his manners improved; and from his judgement, information, and knowledge of the world, she must have received benefit of greater importance.
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Jane Austen (Pride and Prejudice)
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She understood him. He could not forgive her,-but he could not be unfeeling. Though condemning her for the past, and considering it with high and unjest resentment, though perfectly careless of her, and though becoming attached to another, still he could not see her suffer, without the desire of giving her relief. It was a remainder of former sentiment; it was an impuse of pure, though unacknowledged friendship; it was a proof of his own warm and amiable heart, which she could not contemplate without emotions so compounded of pleasure and pain, that she knew not which prevailed.
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Jane Austen (Persuasion)
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My dearest Emma," said he, "for dearest you will always be, whatever the event of this hour's conversation, my dearest, most beloved Emma -- tell me at once. Say 'No,' if it is to be said." She could really say nothing. "You are silent," he cried, with great animation; "absolutely silent! at present I ask no more." Emma was almost ready to sink under the agitation of this moment. The dread of being awakened from the happiest dream, was perhaps the most prominent feeling. "I cannot make speeches, Emma," he soon resumed; and in a tone of such sincere, decided, intelligible tenderness as was tolerably convincing. "If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more. But you know what I am. You hear nothing but truth from me. I have blamed you, and lectured you, and you have borne it as no other woman in England would have borne it. Bear with the truths I would tell you now, dearest Emma, as well as you have borne with them. The manner, perhaps, may have as little to recommend them. God knows, I have been a very indifferent lover. But you understand me. Yes, you see, you understand my feelings and will return them if you can. At present, I ask only to hear, once to hear your voice.
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Jane Austen (Emma)