Only the deepest love will persuade me into matrimony, which is why I will end up an old maid.
The first two dances, however, brought a return of distress; they were dances of mortification. Mr. Collins, awkward and solemn, apologising instead of attending, and often moving wrong without being aware of it, gave her all the shame and misery which a disagreeable partner for a couple of dances can give. The moment of her release from him was ecstasy.
Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
"As Knightley studies a ceiling painted with cavorting nudes and admires the curves of some extremely buff statuary, the Darcy home is increasingly eroticized. Her expression is one of awe tinged with wistfulness and, increasingly, desire; by the time she recognizes a handsome bust of Mr. Darcy, it is clear her feelings toward the man have begun to soften. The moment that interests me, however, comes shortly before this, when Elizabeth has just entered the gallery. For the figure that first seizes and holds her attention is not the lounging youth wearing only a helmet but a standing woman, fully clothed and, what is more, completely veiled. Her face is, indeed, quite closely and confiningly swathed—I am tempted to say, suffocatingly so."
- Susan Fraiman (The Liberation of Elizabeth Bennet in Joe Wright’s Pride & Prejudice)
Elizabeth: How did it begin?
Mr. Darcy: I cannot fix the hour, or the spot, or the look. It was too long ago and I was in the middle before I knew I had begun.
CAROLINE: ”[…]and besides all this, she must possess a certain something in her air and manner of walking, the tone of her voice, her address and expressions.”
DARCY: "And to all this she must yet add something more substantial, in the improvement of her mind by extensive reading."
ELIZABETH: "I am no longer surprised at your knowing only six accomplished women, Mr. Darcy. I rather wonder now at your knowing any."
You must know… surely, you must know it was all for you. You are too generous to trifle with me. I believe you spoke with my aunt last night, and it has taught me to hope as I’d scarcely allowed myself before. If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes have not changed, but one word from you will silence me forever. If, however, your feelings have changed, I will have to tell you: you have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you. I never wish to be parted from you from this day on.
Jennifer Ehle as Elizabeth Bennet
Pride and Prejudice + white