Today I have Abigail Reynolds over for a guest post and she talks about Mr Darcy 😉 There is also a giveaway at the end.
Why women love Mr. Darcy
There’s no lack of reasons to love Mr. Darcy. He’s handsome, wealthy, generous, honest to a fault, and he owns a beautiful estate. What’s not to like? But that doesn’t explain why generations of women have considered Mr. Darcy the perfect romantic hero. There are other handsome, wealthy , honest and generous men in the world. Why does this one man in particular hold such a fascination for women? To my mind it comes down to two things: his devotion to Elizabeth and his taste in choosing her.
Mr. Darcy is devoted to Elizabeth Bennet. Once he falls in love with her, nothing can change his affections – not her angry refusal of his proposal, not her family’s low connections, not his family’s disapprobation. He loves her and he’ll always love her, no matter what. That is the essence of Mr. Darcy.
Mr. Darcy’s loyalty and devotion aren’t limited to Elizabeth Bennet, which tells us that it is part of his character. He’s devoted to his sister, his family, his friend Mr. Bingley’s happiness, his tenants’ well-being and his estate. Jane Austen tells us that he gives offense wherever he goes, and there’s some evidence of that in his close friendship with Mr. Bingley whose good natured acceptance is well-known. It’s an odd friendship from Darcy’s point of view, since Bingley wouldn’t be considered a particularly appropriate candidate for a social connection. Darcy is well above him in social station. That always makes me wonder how many of Darcy’s social equals don’t care to spend time with him because of his tendency to give offense. But what few friends Darcy makes, he keeps close to his heart, and we know the same will be true for his love for Elizabeth.
Mr. Darcy doesn’t hold anything back. Disguise of every sort is his abhorrence. Now, that can be a problem, since his life would probably be easier if he’d learn to tell a few white lies, but in terms of his love for Elizabeth, it makes him more admirable. We don’t worry about Darcy wondering if he could have done better for himself, or whether he has a hidden cruel streak or some grave character flaw. If he did, he wouldn’t be able to hide it because he’s such a terrible liar. We can trust his devotion for the same reason.
Darcy’s choice of Elizabeth Bennet tells us a great deal about him. In the normal course of affairs, we would expect a man of his stature to choose a fashionably languid lady with no opinions of her own. Not Mr. Darcy, though – he chooses an unfashionably pert and energetic country girl. Most importantly, he doesn’t fall in love with her for her beauty or her wit. Austen tells us, “Mr. Darcy had at first scarcely allowed her to be pretty; he had looked at her without admiration at the ball; and when they next met, he looked at her only to criticise. But no sooner had he made it clear to himself and his friends that she had hardly a good feature in her face, than he began to find it was rendered uncommonly intelligent by the beautiful expression of her dark eyes.” [italics are mine]. Note that it isn’t actually her fine eyes or the beautiful expression in them, but that they render her face uncommonly intelligent. What a dream man! In a world where women are constantly pressured to measure up to unattainable beauty and told in many subtle ways that their appearance is the most important measure of their worth to men, here we find the exception to the rule. Mr. Darcy loves Elizabeth because she’s smart! It’s the fantasy of every girl who feels she doesn’t measure up in one way or another to cultural expectations – that there’s a man out there who will value her primarily for her mind.
Mr. Darcy is a true dream man. He loves Elizabeth for her intelligence rather than her beauty, he is truly devoted to her, and she can trust him to be honest and loyal. It certainly doesn’t hurt that he’s rich and handsome, but it’s in the nature of his love for Elizabeth that Mr. Darcy proves himself a most extraordinary man.
Thank you Abigail :=)
1 copy of Mr. Darcy’s Undoing
1. Open to US and Canada
2. Ends October 27
3. Just enter 🙂
Or tell me why you think Mr. Darcy is so loved
OUT NOW Mr. Darcy’s Undoing
A passionate new Pride and Prejudice variation explores the unthinkable-Elizabeth accepts the proposal of a childhood friend before she meets Darcy again. When their paths cross, the devastated Mr. Darcy must decide how far he’ll go to win the woman he loves. How can a man who prides himself on his honor ask the woman he loves to do something scandalous? And how can Elizabeth accept a loveless marriage when Mr. Darcy holds the key to her heart? As they confront family opposition and the ill-will of scandal-mongers, will Elizabeth prove to be Mr. Darcy’s undoing?