Northanger Abbey

Northanger Abbey

Clothing Symbol Icon

Northanger Abbey presents clothing as one of the things that shallow or status-obsessed people fixate on. It is a sign of bad taste to think only of what one wears like Mrs. Allen does, or to dress flashily as Isabella Thorpe does. That said, Northanger Abbey is by no means anti-fashion. Instead, dressing well and elegantly, like Eleanor Tilney, and taking an interest in the economics of clothing, as Henry Tilney does, show worldliness and good taste.

Clothing Quotes in Northanger Abbey

The Northanger Abbey quotes below all refer to the symbol of Clothing. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
Novels and the Heroine Theme Icon
). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Penguin Classics edition of Northanger Abbey published in 2003.
Volume 1, Chapter 4 Quotes

Miss Thorpe, however, being four years older than Miss Morland, and at least four years better informed, had a very decided advantage in discussing such points; she could compare the balls of Bath with those of Tunbridge; its fashions with the fashions of London; could rectify the opinions of her new friend in many articles of tasteful attire; could discover a flirtation between any gentleman and lady who only smiled on each other; and point out a quiz through the thickness of a crowd. These powers received due admiration from Catherine, to whom they were entirely new; and the respect which they naturally inspired might have been too great for familiarity, had not the easy gaiety of Miss Thorpe's manners, and her frequent expressions of delight on this acquaintance with her, softened down every feeling of awe, and left nothing but tender affection.

Related Characters: Catherine Morland, Isabella Thorpe
Related Symbols: Clothing
Page Number: 32
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

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Volume 1, Chapter 10 Quotes

It would be mortifying to the feelings of many ladies, could they be made to understand how little the heart of man is affected by what is costly or new in their attire; how little it is biassed by the texture of their muslin, and how unsusceptible of peculiar tenderness towards the spotted, the sprigged, the mull or the jackonet. Woman is fine for her own satisfaction alone. No man will admire her the more, no woman will like her the better for it. Neatness and fashion are enough for the former, and a something of shabbiness or impropriety will be most endearing to the latter.—But not one of these grave reflections troubled the tranquillity of Catherine.

Related Characters: Narrator (speaker), Catherine Morland
Related Symbols: Clothing
Page Number: 71-72
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Volume 2, Chapter 12 Quotes

“I am quite uneasy about your dear brother, not having heard from him since he went to Oxford; and am fearful of some misunderstanding. Your kind offices will set all right:—he is the only man I ever did or could love, and I trust you will convince him of it. The spring fashions are partly down; and the hats the most frightful you can imagine. I hope you spend your time pleasantly, but am afraid you never think of me. I will not say all that I could of the family you are with, because I would not be ungenerous, or set you against those you esteem; but it is very difficult to know whom to trust, and young men never know their minds two days together. I rejoice to say, that the young man whom, of all others, I particularly abhor, has left Bath. You will know, from this description, I must mean Captain Tilney, who, as you may remember, was amazingly disposed to follow and tease me, before you went away. Afterwards he got worse, and became quite my shadow. Many girls might have been taken in, for never were such attentions; but I knew the fickle sex too well. He went away to his regiment two days ago, and I trust I shall never be plagued with him again.”

Related Characters: Isabella Thorpe (speaker), Catherine Morland, James Morland, Frederick Tilney (Captain Tilney)
Related Symbols: Clothing
Page Number: 202-203
Explanation and Analysis:

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatur. Excepteur sint occaecat cupidatat non proident, sunt in culpa qui officia deserunt mollit anim id est laborum.

Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit, sed do eiusmod tempor incididunt ut labore et dolore magna aliqua. Ut enim ad minim veniam, quis nostrud exercitation ullamco laboris nisi ut aliquip ex ea commodo consequat. Duis aute irure dolor in reprehenderit in voluptate velit esse cillum dolore eu fugiat nulla pariatu

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Clothing Symbol Timeline in Northanger Abbey

The timeline below shows where the symbol Clothing appears in Northanger Abbey. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Volume 1, Chapter 1
Novels and the Heroine Theme Icon
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
...appearance is less plain and she begins to have more of an interest in being well-dressed and to lose her taste for playing sports and getting dirty. Her parents begin to... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 2
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
It is necessary to describe Mrs. Allen, so that the reader can guess what kind of dramatic part she will play in Catherine’s story.... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 3
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...in her sleeve. Mr. Tilney engages Mrs. Allen in a detailed conversation about fabrics, saying that he sometimes buys them for his sister. Mrs. Allen is very impressed by his expertise... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 4
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
...be seen. More luckily, however, when Mrs. Allen repeats for the umpteenth time her wish that they knew anyone in Bath, this wish is finally, unexpectedly fulfilled. Mrs. Allen is approached... (full context)
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...they are introduced to Catherine, exclaim how much she looks like her brother. They explain that Catherine’s brother James is a friend of their brother John, and Catherine remembers that her... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 5
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...Mrs. Allen exclaims how happy she is to have met Mrs. Thorpe in Bath so that they have some acquaintance. She and Mrs. Thorpe spend all their time together, although when... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 6
Novels and the Heroine Theme Icon
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
...and Catherine meet in the Pump-room and have a warm and affectionate conversation. Isabella says that she saw a beautiful hat in a shop window. She asks Catherine if she has... (full context)
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
Loyalty and Love Theme Icon
Isabella asks Catherine what she will wear that evening, because she wants to dress exactly like Catherine, something which... (full context)
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
Isabella says that she sees two young men staring at them and that they ought to move. After... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 8
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...Catherine eagerly agrees. Miss Tilney is pretty and agreeable. She is not attention-seeking or boldly fashionable, but has a quality of real elegance. Catherine is very eager to get to know... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 9
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...She spends the morning reading her book and responding to Mrs. Allen’s idle remarks about clothing. Suddenly, John Thorpe arrives and tells Catherine to hurry and get ready to go on... (full context)
Volume 1, Chapter 10
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Catherine goes home very happy and begins to plan what she will wear the next night. The Narrator states that this consideration is very frivolous,... (full context)
Volume 2, Chapter 12
Sincerity and Hypocrisy Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
Loyalty and Love Theme Icon
...letter from Isabella the next morning. Isabella apologizes for failing to write Catherine. She writes that she is uneasy about James, with whom she has had a misunderstanding. She hopes that... (full context)
Volume 2, Chapter 14
Wealth and Respectability Theme Icon
Experience and Innocence Theme Icon
...Catherine. Mrs. Morland says they are happy to have Catherine back and glad to know that she can look after herself on a long journey. Mr. Allen expresses anger with the... (full context)