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  • Mr. Bennet was among the earliest of those who waited on Mr. Bingley.

  • He had always intended to visit him, though to the last always assuring his wife that

  • he should not go; and till the evening after the visit was paid she had no

  • knowledge of it.

  • It was then disclosed in the following manner.

  • Observing his second daughter employed in trimming a hat, he suddenly addressed her

  • with:

  • "I hope Mr. Bingley will like it, Lizzy." "We are not in a way to know what Mr.

  • Bingley likes," said her mother resentfully, "since we are not to visit."

  • "But you forget, mamma," said Elizabeth, "that we shall meet him at the assemblies,

  • and that Mrs. Long promised to introduce him."

  • "I do not believe Mrs. Long will do any such thing.

  • She has two nieces of her own. She is a selfish, hypocritical woman, and I

  • have no opinion of her."

  • "No more have I," said Mr. Bennet; "and I am glad to find that you do not depend on

  • her serving you."

  • Mrs. Bennet deigned not to make any reply, but, unable to contain herself, began

  • scolding one of her daughters. "Don't keep coughing so, Kitty, for

  • Heaven's sake!

  • Have a little compassion on my nerves. You tear them to pieces."

  • "Kitty has no discretion in her coughs," said her father; "she times them ill."

  • "I do not cough for my own amusement," replied Kitty fretfully.

  • "When is your next ball to be, Lizzy?" "To-morrow fortnight."

  • "Aye, so it is," cried her mother, "and Mrs. Long does not come back till the day

  • before; so it will be impossible for her to introduce him, for she will not know him

  • herself."

  • "Then, my dear, you may have the advantage of your friend, and introduce Mr. Bingley

  • to her."

  • "Impossible, Mr. Bennet, impossible, when I am not acquainted with him myself; how can

  • you be so teasing?" "I honour your circumspection.

  • A fortnight's acquaintance is certainly very little.

  • One cannot know what a man really is by the end of a fortnight.

  • But if we do not venture somebody else will; and after all, Mrs. Long and her

  • daughters must stand their chance; and, therefore, as she will think it an act of

  • kindness, if you decline the office, I will take it on myself."

  • The girls stared at their father. Mrs. Bennet said only, "Nonsense,

  • nonsense!"

  • "What can be the meaning of that emphatic exclamation?" cried he.

  • "Do you consider the forms of introduction, and the stress that is laid on them, as

  • nonsense?

  • I cannot quite agree with you there. What say you, Mary?

  • For you are a young lady of deep reflection, I know, and read great books

  • and make extracts."

  • Mary wished to say something sensible, but knew not how.

  • "While Mary is adjusting her ideas," he continued, "let us return to Mr. Bingley."

  • "I am sick of Mr. Bingley," cried his wife.

  • "I am sorry to hear that; but why did not you tell me that before?

  • If I had known as much this morning I certainly would not have called on him.

  • It is very unlucky; but as I have actually paid the visit, we cannot escape the

  • acquaintance now."

  • The astonishment of the ladies was just what he wished; that of Mrs. Bennet perhaps

  • surpassing the rest; though, when the first tumult of joy was over, she began to

  • declare that it was what she had expected all the while.

  • "How good it was in you, my dear Mr. Bennet!

  • But I knew I should persuade you at last.

  • I was sure you loved your girls too well to neglect such an acquaintance.

  • Well, how pleased I am! and it is such a good joke, too, that you should have gone

  • this morning and never said a word about it till now."

  • "Now, Kitty, you may cough as much as you choose," said Mr. Bennet; and, as he spoke,

  • he left the room, fatigued with the raptures of his wife.

  • "What an excellent father you have, girls!" said she, when the door was shut.

  • "I do not know how you will ever make him amends for his kindness; or me, either, for

  • that matter.

  • At our time of life it is not so pleasant, I can tell you, to be making new

  • acquaintances every day; but for your sakes, we would do anything.

  • Lydia, my love, though you are the youngest, I dare say Mr. Bingley will dance

  • with you at the next ball."

  • "Oh!" said Lydia stoutly, "I am not afraid; for though I am the youngest, I'm the

  • tallest."

  • The rest of the evening was spent in conjecturing how soon he would return Mr.

  • Bennet's visit, and determining when they should ask him to dinner.



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A2 初級 英國腔

第02章--簡-奧斯汀的《傲慢與偏見》。 (Chapter 02 - Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen)

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