Welcome to Brigid's Book Club Part Three: Pride & Prejudice by Jane Austen.
Fascinating background on Regency fashion for men
Compare & contrast Mr Bingley & Mr Darcy
Beautiful free printables to record key quotes
Fun activities for your Book Club to enjoy
In Chapter Three we get our first glimpse of Mr Bingley. We go to the Assembly Rooms for a ball, where we meet both Mr Bingley & Mr Darcy. At the beginning of the ball they are both described as young, wealthy, handsome & eligible bachelors. Half way through the evening their similarities pale as their differences become shockingly vivid.
Mr Darcy falls from favour:
" his manners gave a disgust which turned the tide of his popularity..."
While Mr Bingley's desirable qualities are both magnified & multiplied:
" made himself acquainted with all the principle people in the room; he was lively & unreserved..."
Mr Bingley visits Mr Bennett. Mrs Bennett & her daughters glimpse him from an upper window. This tantalizingly glimpse reveals a lot.
" of ascertaining from an upper window, that he wore a blue coat & rode a black horse."
This short description of Mr Bingley's appearance cleverly reinforces the shortness of the Mother & sisters' first glimpse of him. A neat & minimalist description of his attire also reflects the new fashion of the day. The quickest of peeks & the smallest of details reveal (to the reader of the day) Mr Bingley to be a man of fashion. He wears the new impeccable plain blue coat & is also associated (by his horse), with the timeless look of the equestrian country gentleman.
Regency Fashion for Men
The new high society fashion for men was the complete opposite from the previous Baroque & Georgian fashions. The old fashions for men were flamboyant & opulent including powdered wigs and various lavish embellishments & accessories. The new Regency trend of a dark plain jacket, long trousers & a crisp white linen shirt have endured into the present day. The number one male trend setter & fashion icon of Regency England was Mr Beau Brummell. Bright & pastel colours, lavish accessories, lace, flowers & feathers were now reserved exclusively for female fashion.
Beau Brummell - the first modern celebrity. Famous for being famous!
Impeccably tailored plain black or blue coats
Immaculate white linen shirts
long white cravats
Tall leather boots
Recommended champagne to polish boots
No powered wigs
Long bespoke trousers
Fastidious bathing & grooming ritual
Apparently Beau took 5 hours to be bathed, groomed & dressed. The ritual was ofen attended by throngs of admirers & friends, including the Prince Regent.
Mr Bingley &Mr Darcy: Compare & contrast.
Compare the 2 characters
List the similarities
List the differences.
Contrast the 2 characters
To contrast is to highlight striking & startling differences
Look at your list of differences
Highlight the striking differences
E.g Their opposite reaction to Elizabeth Bennett.
Mr Bingley wants to introduce the "very pretty, & i daresay, very agreeable." Elizabeth to Mr Darcy.
Mr Darcy looks at Elizabeth & says:"She is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me..."
Mr Darcy's comment is rude. He announces his judgement so loudly that Elizabeth overhears. Mr Darcy is showned to be not only rude & pompous but also cold & unkind; he is in complete contrast to the kind & agreeable Mr Bingley.
What effect or effects does this sudden contrast between the 2 characters have on you?
Why do writers compare and contrast characters?
The main effect of comparing the similarities & differences between 2 characters is to make them extra significant & memorable to the reader. Character comparisons can be suddenly blown into insignificance by a revelation (of personality or plot) which is in complete contrast to all previous information. The effect of contrast on the reader can be extremely powerful & even shocking. A great way to create an unforgettable character.
Share & Discuss quotes which jump out at you
Share your favourite key quotes
Why does this quote jump out at you?
Write & keep
Use them as greeting/inspirational cards
Contact us for your free printables NOW!
Thank you so much for reading. Please contact us to book a lesson or to ask any questions about this post or English in general.
Have a fabulous week. See you soon!
LEARN CREATE SHARE