You are grievously to be pitied; in which opinion I am not only joined by Mrs. Collins, but likewise by Lady Catherine and her daughter, to whom I have related the affair. They agree with me in apprehending that this false step in one daughter will be injurious to the fortunes of all the others; for who, as Lady Catherine herself condescendingly says, will connect themselves with such a family? And this consideration leads me moreover to reflect, with augmented satisfaction, on a certain event of last November; for had it been otherwise, I must have been involved in all your sorrow and disgrace.

– Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice, Chapter 48. When Lydia runs off with Wickham, Mr. Collins effectively kicks the Bennet family when they are down. In an extremely rude letter of condolences to Mr. Bennet, he tells him that Lydia’s promiscuous behavior will harm the prospects of the rest of his daughters marrying well. He plays the class card and quotes his patroness Lady Catherine saying that nobody will want to have anything to do with such a family. Recalling Elizabeth’s rejection of his own marriage proposal, Mr. Collins counts his blessings that he didn’t marry into the family, as this would have involved him in their disgrace.