"No, the heart does speak; but just consider: you men have views
about a girl, you come to the house, you make friends, you
criticize, you wait to see if you have found what you love, and
then, when you are sure you love her, you make an offer...."
"Well, that's not quite it."
"Anyway you make an offer, when your love is ripe or when the
balance has completely turned between the two you are choosing
from. But a girl is not asked. She is expected to make her
choice, and yet she cannot choose, she can only answer 'yes' or
"Yes, to choose between me and Vronsky," thought Levin, and the
dead thing that had come to life within him died again, and only
weighed on his heart and set it aching.
"Darya Alexandrovna," he said, "that's how one chooses a new
dress or some purchase or other, not love. The choice has been
made, and so much the better.... And there can be no repeating
"Ah, pride, pride!" said Darya Alexandrovna, as though despising
him for the baseness of this feeling in comparison with that
other feeling which only women know. "At the time when you made
Kitty an offer she was just in a position in which she could not
answer. She was in doubt. Doubt between you and Vronsky. Him
she was seeing every day, and you she had not seen for a long
while. Supposing she had been older...I, for instance, in her
place could have felt no doubt. I always disliked him, and so it
has turned out."
Levin recalled Kitty's answer. She had said: "No, that cannot
"Darya Alexandrovna," he said dryly, "I appreciate your
confidence in me; I believe you are making a mistake. But
whether I am right or wrong, that pride you so despise makes any
thought of Katerina Alexandrovna out of the question for me,--
you understand, utterly out of the question."