Being Mr. Collins

I was having coffee today with friends, and the subject of Pride and Prejudice came up, as it often does. In particular, we were discussing how it would be be easier in real life to be some of Austen’s characters, rather than others.

I pointed out that the most difficult character to be in real life would be Mr. Collins. He is, in a very important way, the most pure of all the characters.

After all, he is the only character in the novel who knows, without a shadow of a doubt, that he is perfectly fine exactly as he is, without the slightest need of improvement.

He is also, of course, by far the most annoying and insufferable character in the book. To understand why, see the previous paragraph.

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