I've now seen four depictions of this novel, two films and two television productions. An image from the American film illustrates the box of my two-volume set.
Here's the first page of my book for Diane's Tuesday Intros. Without any knowledge of the story would the opening lines invite me to continue reading? I'm doubtful.
And yet.. immediately there is a swipe at society behaviour, descriptions of clothing that put pictures in your head; scarlet livery, an embroidered court uniform with silk stockings and buckled shoes.
Oh, go on then, I'm hooked!
The costumes in the latest production came in for criticism in the papers for their historical inaccuracy; colours not yet invented, styles and fabric inappropriate, medals and tailoring making those with knowledge wince.
How important is accuracy? I, for one, would like the producers to try harder. (Are there others out there who, on seeing Darcy dive into the lake in 'Pride and Prejudice' would echo my very disgruntled voice saying, "well, THAT'S not in the book!")
A few years ago I went to St Petersburg with my elder daughter, a city that I knew only through reading Russian novels and had long wanted to visit. We stayed in the centre at the Astoria, below, within walking distance of everything that we wanted to see.
And there was a great deal to see, including wonderful art from all over Europe,
and delightful objects in the folk museum.
I didn't see a purple off-the-shoulder dress anywhere!