I have been in Greece for two weeks (that’s why I haven’t been active that time. Well, I haven’t really been much active in the first place XP) and I spent most of the time reading and playing games. The best book I read there (and one of the best I ever read in my life) was Pride and Prejudice. I have seen the movie with Keira Knightley before, but the novel really did raise up my love for this piece of work. And one of the most interesting characters is Mr. Darcy. This post will be about him and it isn’t only the second real post in this new made blog of mine, it’ll also be the start of my first series which is called Coffee Brand „Characters“.
In this series I will analyze all kinds of characters, from novels, Animes, Games, etc. that inspired me and impacted my life in some way. In advance I want to apologize for mistakes or bad grammar. I try my best. No hate pleeeeaaaaase X3. I’m actually open to improvements and corrections. Anyway, let’s start with our pride benefactor.
Right in the beginning the novel wants to assure us, that Mr. Darcy is the worst person in the entire world. Well, that is mainly the view of Elizabeth Bennet, but it is mentioned that other people in his environment do not sympathize with him, some more some less. He is described as arrogant, apathetic and unfriendly and the description ends with.
“He was the proudest, most disagreeable man in the world, and every body hoped that he would never come there again.“
As a contrast a certain Mr. Wickham appeared later in the story who was very friendly and charming and instantly got the sympathy of everyone. From here on I’ll mention several things of the book, so be aware of SPOILERS!
Elizabeth and Wickham became good friends and he opend up to her and told her his past and his connection with Mr. Darcy, or at least ‘his’ side of it. Wickham’s father was the steward of Mr. Darcy’s father. After the steward died, the old Mr Darcy adopted Wickham in and loved him like his own son and it was promised that Wickham, as soon as he grew up, would become a priest and get a church, but after the old Darcy’s death the younger one refused it. So Wickham chose the become a soldier since he didn’t had any better job perspectives. (I’m sorry if this part is too vague or rough, but I don’t know how to describe it better.)
After hearing this, Lizzy’s hate seemed to increase rapidly. Mr. Darcy wasn’t only obnoxious as hell, he even was a ruthless monster! Later, when Darcy asked for her hand in marriage, she told him boldly her opinion of him. Of course, he was angry and stuff but to proof her otherwise, he wrote her a letter that describes that topic (and also the fact that he more or less separated his friend Mr. Bingley and Lizzy’s older sister Jane, but I have to describe half of the book if I’d explain that too.) After reading the letter, the young woman’s opinion about him changed. Mr. Wickham was actually a big liar and he wasted a lot of money with gambling. Darcy’s money! But Darcy didn’t made a fuss about it and always secretly paid the debts. Wickham also told Darcy that he didn’t want to become a cleric but to go to London and study law. As you can guess instead of studying he spent his time there with amusing himself and making even more debts. After all the money was spent, he went back to Darcy and said he still wanted the church. As we know, Darcy refused, which is now comprehensible. Wickham got angry, seduced Darcy’s little sister Georgina who was only 15 years old back there and wanted to elope with her, which got prevented fortunately. (Again, I apologize for possible vagueness. It’d be the best if you’d read the book yourself XP.)
Ok, so Mr. Darcy isn’t as bad as it seems in the beginning. In Germany we call that having “a rough cover, but a soft core”. Even though he is quite arrogant and pride, he has a good heart and after Elizabeth told him all of his bad points, he tried his best to change to a better person. Because, when Elizabeth visited Pemberley, Darcy’s home, with her aunt and uncle and accidentally bumped into him, he showed himself from his best side. And even though he complained about the bad manner and insufficient connections of Elizabeth’s family before, he wanted to befriend her aunt and uncle. His good character got more revealed, when Wickham and Elizabeth’s little sister Lydia eloped together. Darcy searched for them on his own, paid all of the remaining debts as well as the whole wedding and whatever else it took. This is quite remarkable, even he ‘only’ did it because of his love for her. It was also mentioned, that Darcy took care of the poor and treated his servants very respectable and nicely. He really reminds me of a quote of Thoru Honda from Fruits Basket. (I even succeeded to make a connection between Pride and Prejudice and a Manga!)
“My mom told me, it’s better to trust people than to doubt them. She said that people aren’t born with kind hearts. When we’re born, all we have are desires for food and material things. Selfish instincts, I guess. But she said that kindness is something that grows inside of each person’s body, but it’s up to us to nurture that kindness in our hearts. That’s why kindness is different for every person … It’s not always easy to see the good in people. In some people, you might even doubt that it’s there at all. But if you can somehow, find a way to believe…sometimes that’s all it takes to help someone, to give them the strength to find the good in themselves.”
Mr. Darcy is a person who’s kindness can easily be doubted or is even invisible at first sight. But that doesn’t change the fact that he is kind. Just as Thoru says, everyone has a different heart and with that a different kind of kindness. So we shouldn’t easily judge, like Elizabeth did, because we can’t look into peoples hearts and pasts.Darcy had a reason why he became the way he is.
“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 shewed me how insufficient were all my pretensions to please a woman worthy of being pleased “
I think the arrogant pride and the kind-hearted gentleness is a nice and very interesting contrast within Darcy’s character. That’s probably why I like him so much. (And NO, not because I dote on him or see him as a dream man as other girls do. Actually, he wouldn’t really be my type XD.) I also really like characters that change for good or become wiser through the story and Darcy really accomplished that. He and the story itself taught me that one shouldn’t be misled by one’s Pride and Prejudice and that there is more behind someones behavior and actions as it seems.