![Masterpiece Marianne Willoughby][sense-marianne-willoughby]
Charity Wakefield as Marianne and Dominic Cooper as Willoughby

Sense is correct judgment. Sensibility is quickness of emotion. Two sisters with wildly different proportions of each throw their hearts into the search for true love in MASTERPIECE’s delightful adaptation of Jane Austen’s first published novel.

Andrew Davies (“Bleak House”), renowned for his adaptations of many classic literary works, including the series’ versions of Northanger Abbey, Emma and Pride and Prejudice, wrote the screenplay.

Sense and Sensibility appeared in 1811 to glowing reviews like this one: “The incidents are probable, and

highly pleasing, and interesting; the conclusion such as the reader must wish it should be, and the whole is just long enough to interest without fatiguing.”

In an era rife with novels of courtship, Austen’s books stood out for their vivid characters, witty social commentary and satisfyingly complex routes to the altar. “Sense and Sensibility” fits the pattern with a pair of sisters who are as different as they can be, both facing the dim marriage prospects of the impoverished gentry.

Whether consciously or not, Austen goes in for a little symbolism to reflect her heroines’ plight: the novel contains more rain than any of her other books. In particular, the plot turns on two scenes in which Marianne is caught out in the elements.

See previews and find out more at pbs.org.