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Sketch the plot pyramid for "Pride and Prejudice."

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fianowys | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted June 4, 2009 at 6:48 PM via web

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Sketch the plot pyramid for "Pride and Prejudice."

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lit24 | College Teacher | Valedictorian

Posted June 5, 2009 at 11:13 AM (Answer #1)

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1. The Initial Incident:The story begins with the arrival of the rich and handsome Mr.Bingley who occupies Netherfield Park as a tenant in the county of Hertfordshire a little before Michaelmas (29th of September). The Bennets are his immediate neighbours and Mrs.Bennet whose main  preoccupation in life "was to get her five daughters married" considers him to be a suitable match for her eldest daughter Jane and does her best to bring Jane and Bingley together. However, the plot proper begins In Ch.3 in the Meryton Assembly Ball with Darcy the friend and confidant of Bingley refusing to dance with Elizabeth and insulting her by remarking, "she is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me."

2. The Rising Action: The plot becomes 'complicated' with Jane Austen ironically revealing to the readers and not to Elizabeth that Darcy much against his wishes has begun to be attracted to Elizabeth when she visited Jane who had taken ill and was staying at Netherfield Park: "Darcy had never been so bewitched by any woman as he was by her. He really believed, that were it not for the inferiority of her connections he should be in some danger." (Ch.10). The plot becomes further complicated with the arrival of Collins who after failing to get Jane for a wife sets his eyes on Elizabeth and furthermore with the arrival of Wickham to whom Elizabeth is immediately attracted to. Thus in the 'rising action' we have Darcy secretly in love with Elizabeth, and Collins wishing to marry Elizabeth, and Elizabeth herself being attracted to Wickham the charming young officer from the militia. The most important incident in which all these matters come to a head is the Netherfield Ball in Ch.18, which takes place on Tuesday, November 26th.

3. The Crisis, of course, is Darcy's proposal to Elizabeth in Ch.34, which takes place at Hunsford in Collins' parish in the county of Kent during the Easter vacation and her instant and angry rejection, which is followed by Darcy's long letter of explanation in the next chapter and Elizabeth's recognition of her foolishness in Ch.36: "till this moment I never knew myself."

4. The Falling Action: is the section in which the plot becomes disentangled. Collins gets married to Charlotte and Elizabeth writes a letter to her aunt Mrs. Gardiner in Ch.26 clearly stating that she was never in love with Wickham: "There can be no love in all this." Their visit to Pemberley in Ch.43 marks an important turning point in the plot with Elizabeth realising that Darcy is no longer his usual proud self and by the end of Ch.46, she is definitely in love with Darcy. But everything is upset by the news of Lydia's elopement:"and never had she so honestly felt that she could have loved him, as now, when all love must be vain."

5. The End: The plot ends with Darcy proving that his love for Elizabeth is genuine and that he has been purged of his pride by secretly making a financial arrangement for Wickham who had eloped with Lydia in order that he marry her. The story ends with Bingley marrying Jane (Ch.55) and the plot ends with Darcy once again proposing to Elizabeth and she accepting him this time (Ch.58).

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