In Chapter 19 of “Pride and Prejudice”, Mr Collins proposes to Elizabeth. What is Mr Collins attitude to marriage here and in the rest of the novel?
In Chapter 19, of Pride and Prejudice we become aware of Mr Collins’ attitudes to marriage when he proposes to Elizabeth.
Mr Collins is a clergyman and is also Mr. Bennet’s cousin. He has come to Longbourn in Hertfordshire, with little more than a letter to tell them where he shall ‘trespass on your hospitality’, to marry one of the daughters. In the same letter to Mr. Bennet, he makes himself clear that he will be taking the estate off of Mrs. Bennet and the girls, when Mr Bennet dies.
Mr Collins is very formal about marriage. Jane Austen makes us see he has a business-like approach to marriage and clearly does not love the one he is offering marriage to. This also shows that he is very selfish, and only wants what he can have, and does not matter about the feelings of others in his way.
Mr Collins has a very superficial attitude, this links to the above statement, of the two proposals in one week, and this we can see is not very clergyman like, and very unspiritual. He has no humility by his arrogant way to other people. This is neatly put by Elizabeth, ‘Mr Collins is a conceited, pompous, narrow-minded, silly man.’ Elizabeth and Jane clearly show that their attitude to marriage is all about love and respect, from either partner and are therefore not at all inclined to marry someone as selfish as Mr Collins, whereas Charlotte is rightly suited to Mr Collins, in the case of marriage views, as she, like him, believe that you should not marry to someone you love, but to someone you can have as you may not get a second proposal.
In the novel Pride and Prejudice, the different perceptions of marriage play major roles in the outcomes of the character's lives. Jane Austin uses the different characters to show the varying opinions on marriage. Even though the novel shows how a mismatched couple's marriage can have a horrible outcome, it also emphasizes that marrying for love can succeed. The different perceptions of marriage ...
Later in the novel, we find out what married life to Mr Collins is really like, when Elizabeth decides to visit Charlotte in Hunsford. We read that Charlotte and Mr Collins practically live on separate sides of the house, and that she has the back of his house to do what she wishes, and he stays at the front and looks out for Lady Catherine de Bourgh. This shows that they are not really very in love and do not spend a lot of time together as a couple should.
Overall, in chapter 19 and the rest of the novel we see that Mr Collin’s views on marriage are not very heartfelt and he shows great disregard and lack of appreciation to the nature at what marriage should be.