Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen

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Describe Mr. Collins's proposal to Elizabeth in Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen.

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Lynn Ramsson eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Some readers find Mr. Collins's proposal to Elizabeth Bennett in Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice one of the most entertaining scenes in the whole novel. Mr. Collins proposes to Lizzy in a rather unromantic way, specifying his pragmatic and often self-centered reasons for wanting to marry Lizzy instead of genuinely emotional ones.

Mr. Collins's proposal is business-like, and he goes as far as to discuss the benefits to him as a clergyman if he were to wed a woman like Lizzy. Mr. Collins describes his affection for Lizzy as "violent," which is a rather odd choice of words, and though he attempts to reassure Lizzy that he does care for her in some authentic way, he also makes a comment about her lack of wealth. Mr. Collins is a practical man, and his proposal is also practical, but his lack of self-awareness, among other characteristics, makes such a match unimaginable.

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Lori Steinbach eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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