“…After all, writers have always turned to each other for creative and moral support. The alliance between Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Wordsworth is enshrined in literary lore. A mention of Lord Byron immediately brings to mind Percy Bysshe Shelley. And biographies of F. Scott Fitzgerald are incomplete without reference to Ernest Hemingway.
But where are the women in this roster of legendary friendships? Jane Austen is mythologised as a shy and sheltered spinster; the Brontё sisters, lonely wanderers of windswept moors; George Eliot, an aloof intellectual; and Virginia Woolf, a melancholic genius.
Skeptical of such images of isolation, we set out to investigate. We soon discovered that behind each of these celebrated authors was a close alliance with another female writer. But, to this day, these literary bonds have been systematically forgotten, distorted or downright suppressed…”
With about a fortnight to go before the anniversary of Jane Austen’s birth – and with Christmas coming up! – here are some Austen-themed gift ideas that can be ordered from and shipped to pretty much anywhere:
May I draw your attention to these (real) gold and silver foil Christmas cards for sale, available to be shipped worldwide, featuring a Christmas quote from the final pages of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice:
New in the Little People, Big Dreams series, discover the remarkable life of Jane Austen, the British novelist, in this true story of her life. Little Jane grew up in a big family that loved learning and she often read from her father’s library. In her teenage years she began to write in bound notebooks and craft her own novels. As an adult, Jane secretly created stories that shone a light on the British upper classes and provided a witty social commentary of the time, creating a new dialogue for female characters in books. With stylish and quirky illustrations and extra facts at the back, this empowering series celebrates the important life stories of wonderful women of the world. From designers and artists to scientists, all of them went on to achieve incredible things, yet all of them began life as a little child with a dream. These books make the lives of these role models accessible for children, providing a powerful message to inspire the next generation of outstanding people who will change the world!
Jane Austen is part of a series aimed at very young readers, introducing children to famous women in history.
The illustrations are simple, and a little childlike, as though young Jane herself might be telling the story.
Austen’s works are far too advanced for readers in the target age group of this book, but it’s an interesting way to introduce girls and boys alike to the fact there were PLENTY of women in history who achievement many different things.
The coronation of George IV of the United Kingdom, the flamboyant and infamous son of “Mad” King George, took place on the 19th of July, 1821.
The Coronation as painted by watercolourist James Stephanoff.
The new King had served as Prince Regent through the final years of the Napoleonic Wars as his father’s health had continued to decline, a period that was marked by great excess and frivolity amongst the upper classes.