Important Quotations Explained
real evils, indeed, of Emma’s situation were the power of having
rather too much her own way, and a disposition to think a little
too well of herself: these were the disadvantages which threatened
alloy to her many enjoyments. The danger, however, was at present
so unperceived, that they did not by any means rank as misfortunes
first error, and the worst, lay at her door. It was foolish, it
was wrong, to take so active a part in bringing any two people together.
It was adventuring too far, assuming too much, making light of what
ought to be serious—a trick of what ought to be simple. She was
quite concerned and ashamed, and resolved to do such things no more.
was vexed beyond what could have been expressed—almost beyond what
she could conceal. Never had she felt so agitated, so mortified,
grieved, at any circumstance in her life. She was most forcibly
struck. The truth of his representation there was no denying. She
felt it at her heart. How could she have been so brutal, so cruel
to Miss Bates! How could she have exposed herself to such ill opinion
in any one she valued! And how suffer him to leave her without saying
one word of gratitude, of concurrence, of common kindness!
eyes were instantly withdrawn; and she sat silently meditating,
in a fixed attitude, for a few minutes. A few minutes were sufficient
for making her acquainted with her own heart. A mind like hers,
once opening to suspicion, made rapid progress; she touched, she
admitted, she acknowledged the whole truth. Why was it so much worse that
Harriet should be in love with Mr. Knightley than with Frank Churchill?
Why was the evil so dreadfully increased by Harriet’s having some
hope of a return? It darted through her with the speed of an arrow
that Mr. Knightley must marry no one but herself!
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; but where, as in this case, though the conduct
is mistaken, the feelings are not, it may not be very material.
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