Summarising material


What are the two reading techniques that you will use in order to be able to get a quick summary of a text?


Which of the following is the best definition for skimming a text?


When scanning a text, what are you looking for?


Where in a text should you be able to find out what a paragraph is about?


Why does the ability to skim and scan help in an exam?

Read the following extract and then use your summarising skills to answer the remaining questions.

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.

However little known the feelings or views of such a man may be on his first entering a neighbourhood, this truth is so well fixed in the minds of the surrounding families, that he is considered the rightful property of some one or other of their daughters.

"My dear Mr. Bennet," said his lady to him one day, "have you heard that Netherfield Park is let at last?" Mr. Bennet replied that he had not.

"But it is," returned she; "for Mrs. Long has just been here, and she told me all about it." Mr. Bennet made no answer.

"Do you not want to know who has taken it?" cried his wife impatiently.

"You want to tell me, and I have no objection to hearing it."

This was invitation enough.

"Why, my dear, you must know, Mrs. Long says that Netherfield is taken by a young man of large fortune from the north of England; that he came down on Monday in a chaise and four to see the place, and was so much delighted with it, that he agreed with Mr. Morris immediately; that he is to take possession before Michaelmas, and some of his servants are to be in the house by the end of next week."

"What is his name?"


"Is he married or single?"

"Oh! Single, my dear, to be sure! A single man of large fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine thing for our girls!"

"How so? How can it affect them?"

"My dear Mr. Bennet," replied his wife, "how can you be so tiresome! You must know that I am thinking of his marrying one of them."

Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen


Which of these statements does the author suggest is true when she writes:

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.


In the second paragraph, there is a suggestion that women see men as objects. Which one word may give that impression?


Which words tell us that Netherfield park has been empty for a while?


What is Mrs Bennet thinking that Bingley might do?


Looking only at this extract, how would you summarise Mrs Bennet as a character?