Today is the birthday of author Jane Austen (16 December 1775 – 18 July 1817). Ms. Austen is one of the most wildly read authors in English literature whose social commentary has taken on a life of its own.
Jane Austen. Drawn by Cassandra Austen circa 1810
1 ) Jane Austen was the seventh of eight children.
2 ) Jane wrote six complete novels Northanger Abbey, Sense and Sensibility, Pride and Prejudice, Mansfield Park, Emma and Persuasion. She got to see four of them published.
3 ) Cassandra Leigh Austen married into a lower class, but still gave Jane the sense of social class which one can take from her novels.
4 ) Jane sharpened her comic abilities on her Oxford educated brothers.
5 ) Jane was part of the “Romantic Movement” of the time which was a counter to the conservative movement.
6 ) Pride and Prejudice, which deals with feelings, could be considered part of the Romantic Movement even though it is still rational.
7 ) Jane’s brother Frank was a career man in the British navy. Through him Jane gained her knowledge of life at sea which she wrote about in Persuasion.
8 ) Jane’s first love was Tom Lefroy, a nephew of her close friend. When the two became serious Tom was hurried out of the country since marrying Jane would disinherit him. Tom Lefroy later became the Chief Justice of Ireland.
9 ) Jane’s second serious romance was a clergyman she met while vacationing in Sidmouth at the summer of 1801. However, he died unexpectedly before being able to meet her family (a sign that he was going to propose).
10) The first draft of Sense and Sensibility was done sometime in the 1790s. However Jane revised and rewrote it before it was finally published in 1811.
Zohar – Man of la Book
*Amazon links point to an affiliate account
- Jane Austen’s Birthday tomorrow! (melissaandannamakethings.wordpress.com)
- Jane Austen Birthday Week Part 7 (Final Part) (ejsbookshelf.wordpress.com)
- A New Theory on the Death of Jane Austen (theemptynestexpress.com)
- “Jane Austen Made Me Do It” …and I Loved Almost Every Minute (jenpeterson.wordpress.com)
I am not a big JA fan, but this was a very interesting birthday post about her. I always enjoy your Friday Facts.
Not many people know that JA wrote a long essay called The History of England: from the time of Henry the 4th to the death of Charles the 1st, with drawings by her sister Cassandra that is actually quite funny.
Great to know Alex, thanks.
I like your fun Austen facts–she was quite a gal!
Ohhh I am a total sucker for random lit facts :). This was awesome thanks for the Jane Austen facts….now I know I’m a shoe in to win the Double Jeopardy round in the Jane Austen category LOL 🙂
Interesting Facts! I’m planning to read more classics next year. Jane Austen is at the top of my list of ‘Must Reads’, because I’m ashamed to say that I haven’t read any of Austen’s novels.
Oooh, have you considered The League of Extraordinary Gentle — Men of la — Book Challenge?
Ohh just the challenge I have been looking for!