Comparing herself with elegant, wealthy young ladies, it had not occurred to her that she could produce any effect with her person.
It was not that any harm could be said concerning the vicar of that charming rural parish to which Dorlcote Mill belonged; he was a man of excellent family, an irreproachable bachelor, of elegant pursuits,—had taken honors, and held a fellowship.
"No," said Maggie, "I can do nothing more difficult or more elegant than shirt-making."
…wife of a poor curate contrives, under all her disadvantages, to dress extremely well, and to have a style of coiffure which requires that her nurse shall occasionally officiate as lady’s-maid; when, moreover, her dinner-parties and her drawing-room show that effort at elegance and completeness of appointment to which ordinary women might imagine a large income necessary, it would be unreasonable to expect of her that she should employ a second nurse, or even act as a nurse herself.
In fact, the perfect fitness of this ancient building for an admirable modern purpose, that made charity truly elegant, and led through vanity up to the supply of a deficit, was so striking that hardly a person entered the room without exchanging the remark more than once.