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had more command over herself! she can have no idea of the pain
she gives me by her continual reflections on him. But I will not
repine. It cannot last long. He will be forgot, and we shall all be as
we were before.” Elizabeth looked at her sister with incredulous
solicitude, but said nothing.

“You doubt me,” cried Jane, slightly coloring; “indeed you have no

He may live in my memory as the most amiable man of my
acquaintance, but that is all. I have nothing either to hope or fear,
and nothing to reproach him with.

Thank God! I have not that pain. A little time therefore-I shall
certainly try to get the better.”

With a stronger voice she soon added, “I have this comfort
immediately, that it has not been more than an error of fancy on
my side, and that it has done no harm to any one but myself.” “My
dear Jane!” exclaimed Elizabeth, “you are too good. Your
sweetness and disinterestedness are really angelic; I do not know
what to say to you. I feel as if I had never done you justice, or
loved you as you deserve.” Miss Bennet eagerly disclaimed all
extraordinary merit, and threw back the praise on her sister’s
warm affection.

“Nay,” said Elizabeth, “this is not fair. You wish to think all the
world respectable, and are hurt if I speak ill of anybody. I only
want to think you perfect, and you set yourself against it. Do not be
afraid of my running into any excess, of my encroaching on your
privilege of universal good-will. You need not. There are few
people whom I really love, and still fewer of whom I think well.
The more I see of the world, the more am I dissatisfied with it; and
every day confirms my belief of the inconsistency of all human
characters, and of the little dependence that can be placed on the
appearance of either merit or sense. I have met with two instances
lately, one I will not mention; the other is Charlotte’s marriage. It is
unaccountable! in every view it is unaccountable!” “My dear Lizzy,
do not give way to such feelings as these. They will ruin your
happiness. You do not make allowance enough for difference of
situation and temper. Consider Mr. Collins’s respectability, and
Charlotte’s prudent, steady character. Remember that she is one of
a large family; that as to fortune, it is a
most eligible match; and be ready to believe, for everybody’s sake,
that she may feel something like regard and esteem for our
cousin.” “To oblige you, I would try to believe almost anything,
but no one else could be benefited by such a belief as this; for were
I persuaded that Charlotte had any regard for him, I should only
think worse of her understanding than I now do of her heart. My
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