"Pride and Prejudice," Vocabulary from Chapters 38-49 25 words

Jane Austen's classic dissection of early 19th century manners, "Pride and Prejudice," introduces us to Elizabeth Bennett, a heroine even modern readers will sympathize with and root for (etext found here).

Learn these word lists for the novel: Chapters 1-8, Chapters 9-17, Chapters 18-26, Chapters 27-37, Chapters 38-49, Chapters 50-61
  1. consternation
    fear resulting from the awareness of danger
    He then handed her in, Maria followed, and the door was on the point of being closed, when he suddenly reminded them, with some consternation, that they had hitherto forgotten to leave any message for the ladies at Rosings.
  2. congenial
    suitable to your needs
    To this Mary very gravely replied, "Far be it from me, my dear sister, to depreciate such pleasures. They would doubtless be congenial with the generality of female minds. But I confess they would have no charms for me--I should infinitely prefer a book."
  3. equivocal
    open to two or more interpretations; or of uncertain nature or significance; or (often) intended to mislead
    Elizabeth saw directly that her father had not the smallest intention of yielding; but his answers were at the same time so vague and equivocal, that her mother, though often disheartened, had never yet despaired of succeeding at last.
  4. allay
    lessen the intensity of or calm
    The tumult of Elizabeth's mind was allayed by this conversation.
  5. volatility
    the trait of being unpredictably irresolute
    Our importance, our respectability in the world, must be affected by the wild volatility, the assurance and disdain of all restraint which mark Lydia's character.
  6. perturbation
    an unhappy and worried mental state
    Elizabeth, as they drove along, watched for the first appearance of Pemberley Woods with some perturbation; and when at length they turned in at the lodge, her spirits were in a high flutter.
  7. intimation
    a slight suggestion or vague understanding
    Mrs. Reynolds's respect for Elizabeth seemed to increase on this intimation of her knowing her master.
  8. whimsical
    determined by chance or impulse or whim rather than by necessity or reason
    "But perhaps he may be a little whimsical in his civilities," replied her uncle. "Your great men often are; and therefore I shall not take him at his word about fishing, as he might change his mind another day, and warn me off his grounds."
  9. vindication
    the act of vindicating or defending against criticism or censure etc.
    Elizabeth here felt herself called on to say something in vindication of his behaviour to Wickham; and therefore gave them to understand, in as guarded a manner as she could, that by what she had heard from his relations in Kent, his actions were capable of a very different construction; and that his character was by no means so faulty, nor Wickham's so amiable, as they had been considered in Hertfordshire.
  10. pecuniary
    relating to or involving money
    In confirmation of this she related the particulars of all the pecuniary transactions in which they had been connected, without actually naming her authority, but stating it to be such as might be relied on.
  11. tincture
    fill, as with a certain quality
    On this point she was soon satisfied; and two or three little circumstances occurred ere they parted, which, in her anxious interpretation, denoted a recollection of Jane not untinctured by tenderness, and a wish of saying more that might lead to the mention of her, had he dared.
  12. complaisance
    a disposition or tendency to yield to the will of others
    It was not often that she could turn her eyes on Mr. Darcy himself; but, whenever she did catch a glimpse, she saw an expression of general complaisance, and in all that he said she heard an accent so far removed from hauteur or disdain of his companions, as convinced her that the improvement of manners which she had yesterday witnessed, however temporary its existence might prove, had at least outlived one day.
  13. acrimony
    a rough and bitter manner
    It was gratitude--gratitude, not merely for having once loved her, but for loving her still well enough to forgive all the petulance and acrimony of her manner in rejecting him, and all the unjust accusations accompanying her rejection.
  14. supersede
    take the place or move into the position of
    Her pale face and impetuous manner made him start, and before he could recover himself enough to speak, she, in whose mind every idea was superseded by Lydia's situation, hastily exclaimed, "I beg your pardon, but I must leave you.
  15. palliation
    easing the severity of a pain or a disease without removing the cause
    She could neither wonder nor condemn, but the belief of his self-conquest brought nothing consolatory to her bosom, afforded no palliation of her distress. It was, on the contrary, exactly calculated to make her understand her own wishes; and never had she so honestly felt that she could have loved him, as now, when all love must be vain.
  16. profligate
    unrestrained by convention or morality
    We both know that he has been profligate in every sense of the word; that he has neither integrity nor honour; that he is as false and deceitful as he is insinuating."
  17. expeditiously
    with efficiency; in an efficient manner
    They travelled as expeditiously as possible, and, sleeping one night on the road, reached Longbourn by dinner-time the next day. It was a comfort to Elizabeth to consider that Jane could not have been wearied by long expectations.
  18. invective
    abusive or venomous language used to express blame or censure or bitter deep-seated ill will
    Mrs. Bennet, to whose apartment they all repaired, after a few minutes conversation together, received them exactly as might be expected: with tears and lamentations of regret, invectives against the villainous conduct of Wickham, and complaints of her own sufferings and ill-usage; blaming everybody but the person to whose ill-judging indulgence the errors of her daughter must be principally owing.
  19. solicitude
    a feeling of excessive concern
    Though her brother and sister were persuaded that there was no real occasion for such a seclusion from the family, they did not attempt to oppose it, for they knew that she had not prudence enough to hold her tongue before the servants while they waited at table, and judged it better that one only of the household, and the one whom they could most trust, should comprehend all her fears and solicitude on the subject.
  20. malice
    feeling a need to see others suffer
    But we must stem the tide of malice, and pour into the wounded bosoms of each other the balm of sisterly consolation."
  21. dilatory
    wasting time
    The whole party were in hopes of a letter from Mr. Bennet the next morning, but the post came in without bringing a single line from him. His family knew him to be, on all common occasions, a most negligent and dilatory correspondent; but at such a time they had hoped for exertion.
  22. extravagance
    the quality of exceeding the appropriate limits of decorum or probability or truth
    Their other aunt also visited them frequently, and always, as she said, with the design of cheering and heartening them up--though, as she never came without reporting some fresh instance of Wickham's extravagance or irregularity, she seldom went away without leaving them more dispirited than she found them.
  23. sanguine
    confidently optimistic and cheerful
    It was possible, however, that some of his companions in the shire might be able to give more information; and, though she was not very sanguine in expecting it, the application was something to look forward to.
  24. exuberance
    joyful enthusiasm
    As soon as Jane had read Mr. Gardiner's hope of Lydia's being soon married, her joy burst forth, and every following sentence added to its exuberance.
  25. attribute
    attribute or credit to
    "For we must attribute this happy conclusion," she added, "in a great measure to his kindness. We are persuaded that he has pledged himself to assist Mr. Wickham with money."