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Jane Austen News – Issue 149

The Jane Austen News marvels at old photographs

What’s the Jane Austen News this week? 


Lost Photographs of Jane Austen’s Nieces


Lost photographs of Jane Austen’s nieces and nephews have been discovered in an old photo album which was purchased on eBay. Karen Levers, 51, bought the book of Victorian photographs for $1,000 (£780) from eBay, expecting it to be full of pictures of 19th century aristocrats. Instead she found it to be filled with photographs of Jane Austen’s nieces and nephews.

The album was compiled by Lord George Augusta Hill, an aristocrat who married two of Jane Austen’s nieces, Cassandra and Louisa, both of whom were daughters of her older brother Edward.

 

Austen’s great-niece Norah Mary Elizabeth Ward shortly after her wedding in April 1859.

 

The lady in this photograph is Austen’s niece, Marianne.

 

Jane Austen’s niece Fanny Knight, who later became Lady Knatchbull.

 

This picture shows Jane Austen’s nephew, Edward Knight, who scandalously eloped to marry his sister’s stepdaughter.

 

What a find! Historians are currently examining the album and it is hoped there will be an exhibition of the photos in the future.

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A Plan of a Novel

Once it became known to Jane Austen’s friends and relations that she was the author of the famous novels signed only, “By a Lady” is is obvious that helpful suggestions and Constructive Criticism abounded. Evidently, Jane was able to take it all with a grain of salt, while still providing a sample of the “perfect” novel. Fortunately for her readers, her now famous sense of humor is not lacking. Scene to be in the Country, Heroine the Daughter of a [1] Clergyman, one who after having lived much in the World had retired from it, and settled on a Curacy, with a very small fortune of his own.–He, the most excellent Man that can be imagined, perfect in Character, Temper and Manners–without the smallest drawback or peculiarity to prevent his being the most delightful companion to his Daughter from one year’s end to the other.–Heroine a [2] faultless Character herself–, perfectly good, with much tenderness and sentiment, and not the least [3] Wit–very highly [4] accomplished, understanding modern Languages and (generally speaking) everything that the most accomplished young Women learn, but particularly excelling in Music–her favourite pursuit–and playing equally well on the Piano Forte and Harp–and singing in the first stile. Her Person, quite beautiful–[5] dark eyes and plump cheeks.–Book to open with the description of Father and Daughter–who are to converse in long speeches, elegant Language–and a tone of high, serious sentiment.–The Father to be induced, at his Daughter’s earnest request, to relate to her the past events of (more…)
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