Quoting is something I like to do. Actually I send friends, family and colleagues quotes over email, for their birthdays, and also on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. Another little tradition have started up and kept going.
It’s quite well known, that Austen with her wicked wit, has her fair share of quotable quips. They grace stationary and all manner of accessories but this morning my mum was a little upset. It seems Bill Belichick, coach of the U.S. football team the New England Patriots and his companion Linda Halliday, celebrated Valentine’s Day with a tropical vacation — lovely for them.
Per CBS Sports, Halliday noted the occasion by tweeting a photo of them on the beach and: “Her caption included the following quote: ‘You have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love … I love … I love you!'”
Our local CBS affiliate here in Boston, WBZ* cited the quote as belonging to Jane Austen.
Thus upsetting my mum on several levels.
Because the words just did set right with her.
She could not quite remember what they said on the air — to tell me.
Kept saying it included over and over, “I love you.” Which didn’t ring true to me.
So I promised to search online when I had a moment at work today, which I did.
First I found the article about their vacation and the tweet, then realized the quote was probably from the most recent Pride and Prejudice movie (2005) adaptation with Keira Knightley in the role of Elizabeth Bennet.
“Bewitched” is kind of a deal breaker here. Right now I’m without free access to the Oxford English Dictionary, but I’m pretty sure it’s not the kind of word that would have been used during the Regency by any author in a positive context.
With a little more searching I was able to confirm it — “You have bewitched me, body and soul, and I love, I love, I love you. I never wish to be parted from you from this day on.” These were Mr. Darcy’s lines spoken by actor Matthew Macfadyn, and written by screenwriter Deborah Moggach. Sources are writer and Janeite, Deborah Yaffe’s blog/website and also the Internet Movie Database (IMDB)/Amazon.
Most Janeites are familiar with Austen’s original scene and dialogue, where Mr. Darcy says to Elizabeth: ‘You are too generous to trifle with me. If your feelings are still what they were last April, tell me so at once. My affections and wishes are unchanged, but one word from you will silence me on this subject forever.’
Austen continues the scene but only with description and not specific dialogue: “Elizabeth feeling all the more than common awkwardness and anxiety of his situation, now forced herself to speak; and immediately, though not very fluently gave him to understand, that her sentiments had undergone so material a change, since the period to which he had alluded, as to make her receive with gratitude and pleasure, his present assurances. The happiness which this reply produced, was such as he had never felt before and he expressed himself on the occasion as sensibly and warmly as a man violently in love can be supposed to do.”
Austen excerpts from Pride and Prejudice, by Jane Austen, Penguin Classics 1985.
To be clear, I’m not slighting Ms. Moggach’s work, I enjoyed her script, and personally the only part of the 2005 film, that I disliked was the reworking/reimagining of the scene at Pemberley.
Moggach’s interpretation of Austen are expanded and quite romantic but I still prefer the original dialogue.
*Full disclosure, I was an assignment desk intern at WBZ-TV in Boston during the summer of 1991, but at that time it was an NBC not a CBS affiliate.