Jane Austen

Quotations

I begin already to weigh my words and sentences more than I did, and am looking about for a sentiment, an illustration or a metaphor in every corner of the room. Could my Ideas flow as fast as the rain in the Store closet it would be charming.

Letter, January 24, 1809, to her sister, Cassandra. Jane Austen

For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbours, and laugh at them in our turn?

A woman, especially, if she have the misfortune of knowing anything, should conceal it as well as she can.

I am afraid that the pleasantness of an employment does not always evince its propriety.

A man would always wish to give a woman a better home than the one he takes her from; and he who can do it, where there is no doubt of her regard, must, I think, be the happiest of mortals.

What dreadful hot weather we have! It keeps me in a continual state of inelegance.

letter, Sept. 18, 1796.

I must confess that I think her as delightful a creature as ever appeared in print.

About the character Elizabeth Bennett from her novel Pride and Prejudice. Letter, January 29, 1813, to her sister, Cassandra.

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 twenty years at least.

Good-humoured, unaffected girls, will not do for a man who has been used to sensible women. They are two distinct orders of being.

One cannot be always laughing at a man without now and then stumbling on something witty.

Surprizes are foolish things. The pleasure is not enhanced, and the inconvenience is often considerable.

Only one comes back with me tomorrow, probably Miss Eliza, & I rather dread it. We shall not have two Ideas in common. She is young, pretty, chattering, & thinking chiefly (I presume) of Dress, Company, & Admiration.

Letter, November 30, 1814, to her niece, Fanny Knight. Jane Austen

If the warmth of her Language could affect the Body it might be worth reading in this weather.

Letter, January 17, 1809, to her sister, Cassandra.

Nobody can tell what I suffer! But it is always so. Those who do not complain are never pitied.

It will, I believe, be everywhere found, that as the clergy are, or are not what they ought to be, so are the rest of the nation.

It is not time or opportunity that is to determine intimacy; 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.

Respect for right conduct is felt by every body.

I am looking over Self Control again, & my opinion is confirmed of its being an excellently-meant, elegantly-written Work, without anything of Nature or Probability in it.

Letter, October 11, 1813, to her sister, Cassandra. Jane Austen

Lady Sondes’ match surprises, but does not offend me; had her first marriage been of affection, or had their been a grown-up daughter, I should not have forgiven her; but I consider everybody as having a right to marry once in their lives for love, if they can.

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife.

To sit in the shade on a fine day, and look upon verdure is the most perfect refreshment.

Human nature is so well disposed towards those who are in interesting situations, that a young person, who either marries or dies, is sure of being kindly spoken of.

Vanity working on a weak head, produces every sort of mischief.

I am greatly pleased with your account of Fanny; I found her in the summer just what you describe, almost another sister; and could not have supposed that a niece would ever have been so much to me. She is quite after one’s own heart; give her my best love, and tell her that I always think of her with pleasure.

Letter, October 7, 1808, to her sister, Cassandra. Jane Austen

She found his manners very pleasing indeed.-The little flaw of having a Mistress now living with him at Ashdown Park, seems to be the only unpleasing circumstance about him.

Letter, January 8, 1801, to her sister, Cassandra.