"It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune must be in want of a wife."
So begins Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen's perfect comedy of manners--one of the most popular novels of all time--that features splendidly civilized sparring between the proud Mr. Darcy and the prejudiced Elizabeth Bennet as they play out their spirited courtship in a series of eighteenth-century drawing-room intrigues. "Pride and Prejudice seems as vital today as ever," writes Anna Quindlen in her introduction to this Modern Library edition. "It is a pure joy to read." Eudora Welty agrees: "The gaiety is unextinguished, the irony has kept its bite, the reasoning is still sweet, the sparkle undiminished. It is] irresistible and as nearly flawless as any fiction could be."
This volume is the companion to the BBC television series, a lavish production aired on the Arts and Entertainment Network.
The Modern Library has played a significant role in American cultural life for the better part of a century. The series was founded in 1917 by the publishers Boni and Liveright and eight years later acquired by Bennett Cerf and Donald Klopfer. It provided the foun-dation for their next publishing venture, Random House. The Modern Library has been a staple of the American book trade, providing readers with affordable hard-bound editions of important works of liter-ature and thought. For the Modern Library's seventy-fifth anniversary, Random House redesigned the series, restoring as its emblem the running torchbearer created by Lucian Bernhard in 1925 and refurbishing jackets, bindings, and type, as well as inau-gurating a new program of selecting titles. The Modern Library continues to provide the world's best books, at the best prices.
About the Author
One of England s most beloved authors, Jane Austen wrote such classic novels as Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Emma, and Northanger Abbey. Published anonymously during her life, Austen s work was renowned for its realism, humour, and commentary on English social rites and society at the time. Austen s writing was supported by her family, particularly by her brother, Henry, and sister, Cassandra, who is believed to have destroyed, at Austen s request, her personal correspondence after Austen s death in 1817. Austen s authorship was revealed by her nephew in A Memoir of Jane Austen, published in 1869, and the literary value of her work has since been recognized by scholars around the world.
ANNA QUINDLEN is the author of several bestselling novels ("Rise and Shine, Blessings, Object Lessons, One True Thing, Black and Blue"), and nonfiction books ("Good Dog. Stay., Being Perfect, Loud & Clear, A Short Guide to a Happy Life, Living Out Loud, Thinking Out Loud, How Reading Changed My Life"). She has also written two children's books ("The Tree That Came to Stay, Happily Ever After"). Her "New York Times" column "Public and Private" won the Pulitzer Prize in 1992. Her column now appears every other week in "Newsweek".
"The wit of Jane Austen has for partner the perfection of her taste."