I have given him my consent. He is the kind of man, indeed, to whom I should never dare refuse anything, which he condescended to ask. I now give it to you, if you are resolved on having him. But let me advise you to think better of it. I know your disposition, Lizzy. I know that you could be neither happy nor respectable, unless you truly esteemed your husband; unless you looked up to him as a superior. Your lively talents would place you in the greatest danger in an unequal marriage. You could scarcely escape discredit and misery. My child, let me not have the grief of seeing you unable to respect your partner in life.
– Jane Austen
Pride and Prejudice, Chapter 59. Mr. Bennet tells Elizabeth that he has gives his consent for Mr. Darcy to marry her. But he also warns his favorite daughter that she should think hard before going into wedlock. He emphasizes the importance of a marriage of equals who have respect for one another and he doesn’t want Elizabeth to settle for anything less. Mr. Bennet himself is in a loveless marriage between unequal minds and he has no respect for his wife. He doesn’t want the same for Elizabeth.