Mr. Bennet is not forthcoming in his description of Mr. Bingley, despite his wife’s and daughters’ efforts to question him. Lady Lucas, though, gives a favorable account. Mr. Bingley is a handsome, pleasant, young man—and he will be attending the next assembly with a party of his own guests.
Mrs. Bennet only wishes to see her daughters married well.
Mr. Bingley visited Mr. Bennet, hoping to see his famously beautiful daughters. However, he only saw their father—but the girls saw him from a window.
He is invited to dinner but has to decline, as he is going to town. Mrs. Bennet worries that this means he is a transient person who never settles down. Lady Lucas tells her he is merely meeting his party of guests. The Bennet girls worry over the number of women in his party until they learn that they are all his relatives.
Mr. Bingley attends the assembly with his two sisters, a brother-in-law, and a friend named Mr. Darcy. They are all fine people, but Mr. Darcy captures the most attention—particularly when it is learned that he makes 10,000 a year. However, his bad manners and pride turn everyone against him. He is the exact opposite of Mr. Bingley in disposition. During the party, he only associates with his own party—and seems to resent anyone tries to make conversation with him.
Mrs. Bennet is on the war path after he insults Elizabeth. Mr. Bingley had tried to get Mr. Darcy to dance. Mr. Darcy replied he detested dancing with women he didn’t know. Mr. Bingley had pointed out Elizabeth, the sister of the one girl Mr. Darcy had admired (who was favored by Mr. Bingley). Mr. Darcy tells him he doesn’t want to dance with a woman who has been rejected by other men. Elizabeth is amused at this insult and repeats the story to her friends.
When Mrs. Bennet and her daughters arrive home, Mrs. Bennet tries to tell her husband about the party. He interrupts her when she starts giving details he doesn’t care about. She tells him about that horrible Mr. Darcy, and she wishes that her husband had been there to cut him down to size.