The April A to Z Blogging Challenge is a month-long event where I, and more than 2000 other bloggers, will post every day of the month (except Sundays) using a different letter of the alphabet. The theme of my posts will be “What I Love About Pride and Prejudice.” Click the link above or the A to Z badge in my sidebar to visit other participants.
N is for Netherfield Park
“My dear Mr. Bennet,” said is lady to him one day, “have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?” –Jane Austen Pride & Prejudice
The day Charles Bingley moved into Netherfield Park changed the future course for all the characters in Pride and Prejudice.
If this one event hadn’t happened, Mr. Bennet wouldn’t have gone to make the acquaintance of Mr. Bingley and his daughters wouldn’t have been able to dance with this newcomer at the ball in Meryton. If Bingley hadn’t liked Jane Bennet so much upon meeting her, he never would have pointed out her sister Elizabeth to Darcy. Darcy wouldn’t have slighted Elizabeth and she wouldn’t have resented him. There would have been no evenings at Netherfield for Elizabeth to spar with Darcy while Jane laid ill upstairs. And most definitely, there wouldn’t have been a ball at Netherfield where Darcy and Bingley’s sisters decided once and for all to get Bingley away from Meryton.
In all likelihood, Jane would have felt duty bound to marry Mr. Collins (shiver). If Elizabeth didn’t fall for Wickham (shiver again), which is likely because the thing they most had in common was a dislike of Darcy, she may never have fallen in love with anyone. I’m sure the rest of the Bennet sisters would have continued to be quite silly. And Darcy would have likely married his cousin Anne de Bourgh or, worse yet, Charles’ sister Caroline (and yet another shiver).
Jane Austen’s whole story depended on the fact that Charles Bingley couldn’t make up his mind about where to buy a house. If he had liked any of the other estates he’d seen there wouldn’t have been any pride or prejudice to be sorted. Netherfield Park was a temporary residence, but it set in motion some very permanent outcomes.
Do you have any other thoughts on what would have happened if Charles Bingley never came to Netherfield Park? I’d love to read your comments.