Sunday, 28 June 2009

Jane Austen Quote of the Week – Week 62

My apologies for the belated quote this week, but I finally managed to pull something from Jane Austen’s first written novel. Northanger Abbey, Chapter X.

It would be mortifying to the feelings of many ladies, could they be made to understand how little the heart of man is affected by what is costly or new in their attire; how little it is biased by the texture of their muslin, and how unsusceptible of peculiar tenderness towards the spotted, the sprigged, the mull or the jackonet. Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. No man will admire her the more, no woman will like her the better for it. Neatness and fashion are enough for the former, and a something of shabbiness or impropriety will be most endearing to the latter.

I am most impressed by the quote in bold. Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. Why, is it not so true? We often unconsciously or consciously compare ourselves with other women, or with what a person of opposite gender that we admire would think of us. But is it not amazing to be happy, just happy and accepts ourselves the way ourselves are? Accepting myself the way I am, with flaws and blemishes? For each and everyone of us is unique in our own ways?

Oh dear oh dear. Seemingly, I have found my new favourite quote. Thank you so much, Jane!

Pic: Catherine Morland, from (submitted by Laurel Ann)


Anonymous said...

Well, dear Icha, I am rather proud of myself, because I checked with my marked up copy of NA that is several years old, and would you believe - I had highlighted that very quote and wrote the word "truism" in the margin. "Great minds..." and all that, you know. So, thanks for the reminder.

Linda the Librarian

Icha said...

Indeed Madam, I have to admit that I missed this quote when I first read NA. But now I marvel at its sheer beauty...

And of course, by extension, the quote applies to men as well. It's just that women in JA's time were more likely to be prone to self-admonishment... (such is still the case today), hence the quote.

Thanks for the read, too! ^_^

Rachel said...

It is so important to love and cherish takes alot of practice and attention but I think it is possible.

Icha said...

Yes. We experience what we believe, right? Just had an hour of argument with a friend about how we can't get away from our ghosts of the past. I'm on the 'Yes we can!' side, of course!