It might be hard to fully place Jane Austen in the category of romance writers, since her novels have never been solely about love and romance. Instead, that topic was always intermixed with societal elements, with the accent being placed on social conventions and her female characters. Regardless of it, her novels are still considered some of the best romantic novels of English literature. To honor that, here are her (arguably) best citations on love and romance, in no particular order.

 

”I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you.”

— Persuasion

”I cannot fix on the hour, or the spot, or the look or the words, which laid the foundation. It is too long ago. I was in the middle before I knew that I had begun.”

— Pride and Prejudice

”The more I know of the world, the more I am convinced that I shall never see a man whom I can really love. I require so much!”

— Sense and Sensibility

”There is nothing I would not do for those who are really my friends. I have no notion of loving people by halves, it is not my nature.”

— Northanger Abbey

”A lady’s imagination is very rapid; it jumps from admiration to love, from love to matrimony in a moment.”

— Pride and Prejudice

”Friendship is certainly the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love.”

— Northanger Abbey

”If I loved you less, I might be able to talk about it more.”

— Emma

”No young lady can be justified in falling in love before the gentleman’s love is declared, it must be very improper that a young lady should dream of a gentleman before the gentleman is first known to have dreamt of her. ”

— Northanger Abbey

”I am now convinced that I have never been much in love; for had I really experienced that pure and elevating passion, I should at present detest his very name, and wish him all manner of evil. But my feelings are not only cordial towards him; they are even impartial towards her. I cannot find out that I hate her at all, or that I am in the least unwilling to think her a very good sort of girl. There can be no love in all this.”

— Pride and Prejudice

”All the privilege I claim for my own sex (it is not a very enviable one; you
need not covet it), is that of loving longest, when existence or when hope is gone.’

— Persuasion

 

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