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Archive for February, 2008

Estimating lace and muslin: dress and fashion in Jane Austen and her world, by Jeffrey A. Nigro is a fabulous article about fashion in Jane’s day. This conference paper was published in Persuasions: The Jane Austen Journal in 2001. Some of Mr. Nigro’s observations include:

Convenience was another reason for the increasing simplicity in dress beginning in the 1780s. Dry cleaning was not invented until the middle of the nineteenth century, and did not become commonplace until the twentieth. In Austen’s time, a silk dress that got dirty was essentially ruined. The fabrics that started to become fashionable from the 1780s onward (muslin and other cotton fabrics, linen, lawn) were much easier to care for, which was part of their appeal. Nevertheless, given the absence of modern appliances, the care and maintenance of clothing still meant much work for the servants in upper- and middle-class households.

Outerwear garments included the spencer, a long-sleeved jacket that extended only to the raised waistline. Worn by both men and women, it was named for the 2nd Earl Spencer, who, according to one version of the story, cut off the coattails of his jacket after wagering that he could invent a new fashion. For colder weather, there was the pelisse, a skirt-length overcoat, often lined and trimmed with fur, which originated in Hungary as a part of military dress. Bonnets became fashionable, essentially smaller versions of the straw hats of the 1780s, but now pulled in to frame the face. Bonnets, like shawls, would become staples of feminine dress until at least the middle of the nineteenth century.

Click here for more links about fashion:

* Jane Austen Pellise coat

* A Quilted Regency Spencer Jacket

* The Spencer Jacket

* The Importance of Wearing White, Jane Austen Centre Magazine

* Kyoto Costume Institute

* Bonnets, Caps, Turbans, and Hats

Images:

Muslin dress, Vintage Textile (top)
Jane Austen’s Pellisse Coat (middle)
Kyoto Costume Institute, Spencer Jacket (bottom)

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    Update: Jane Austen Today is running an icon contest. Vote for your favorite icon and help its creator win one of two Becoming Jane DVDs. Click here to see the icon entries, and to vote. The contest is open until March 5. This icon was submitted last night by Sawcat.

    Edited 2-28-08

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    Jane Austen Sequels, written by Jane Odiwe, has recently been featuring a series of posts on Regency Brighton, including Brighton Encampments, Donkey Riding and Sea Bathing in Brighton, Stopping for Refreshment (on a coach from London to Brighton), and Brighton Entertainments. Jane also paints lovely watercolors and sells her images, cards, and books, such as her recently published Lydia Bennet’s Journal, on Austen Effusions. Jane has begun a third blog, which will discuss all things Austen and the Regency world. I become quite dizzy when I think of all her activities!

    Image of Refreshments at a Coaching Inn from Jane Austen Sequels

    Michelle Ann Young from Regency Ramble has just completed a series of posts on Bath. Michelle Ann frequently describes the flora and fauna of the era, and fashions of the season. She is also promoting her most recent novel, No Regrets.

    Visit Jane Austen Addict.com to read Laurie Viera Rigler’s posts about PBS Masterpiece Classic’s The Complete Jane Austen series. Laurie, author of The Confessions of a Jane Austen Addict, described a JASNA ball she attended in 2004. This photo shows her with her own Mr. Darcy, and looking beautiful in her red regency gown. Such fun! Also, don’t miss her posts about Mansfield Park and Pride and Prejudice. In addition, she oversees a forum on her website, and is writing a sequel to her best-selling novel. My, my, Laurie, you have been busy!

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    Genealogy and census records record the life in 19th century England in remarkable detail. Take Appleby, for example, a village in Leicestershire which has been occupied since the iron age. The 1841 census provides a complete record of how the inhabitants of this small village made their living at that precise time, including farmers, tradesmen, drapers and dressmakers, people in domestic service, and professional people. Descriptions for each group follow a similar pattern to this one for skilled workers:

    There was always a demand for skilled workers in the agricultural world and this is reflected in the large number of craftsmen supporting the farming community.Many were concerned with horses, the main means of providing power and transport.The particular men performing jobs which required skills relating to the agricultural world were:

    • 5 blacksmiths – shoeing horses and making wrought iron products for farm and home
    • 2 farriers – shoeing smiths also acting as horse doctors
    • 1 harness maker
    • 2 wheelwrights – making carts, wheels with their iron tyres (often fitted by the blacksmith)
    • 2 gamekeepers – looking after the squire’s game
    • 1 gardener employed in the new hall grounds
    Parish of Gorleston

    An inventory of goods during the 18th century recorded the possessions of established and prosperous middling farmers in such precise detail as: In ye dairy & kittchin, potts, kettles, one Copper, Barrills & tubes, In ye Chamber over ye house, one bed & Beding, Curtaines, chairs & table, In ye Chamber over ye dairy, 2 beds & beding, 2 bolsters & linnin, etc. I would imagine that history students and authors of history and historical romances would find such authentic descriptions invaluable in their research.

    The extract for Appleby in 1835 states that “letters arrive every morning at half-past ten, and are despatched every afternoon at three”, and that James Hatton was the Post Master. These details make history come alive again. Amazingly, records on almost every parish in England still exist. I’ve listed a few more below:

     

    Raunheim, Sleeping Kitchen Maid, 1850, Wikimedia Commons
    St. Michael’s Church, Appleby (Upper image)


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    Illustration from Modes et Manieres Du Jour, 1798 – 1808

    I have changed my mind, & changed the trimmings on my Cap this morning, they are now much as you suggested, – I felt as if I should not prosper if I strayed from your directions, & I think it makes me look more like Lady Conyngham now than it did before, which is all that one lives for now. Jane Austen to Cassandra, December 18-19, 1798

    Women during the Regency period wore headdresses outdoors as a matter of course. When a woman married, or if she was a spinster in her late twenties, she would also take to wearing a cap indoors. This image from Wikipedia shows Mme. Seriziat wearing a bergere, or shepherdess-style straw bonnet over a cap, as was the custom back then. When her child was a baby, he might have worn a simple bonnet, as infants still do today.

    Aside from sheltering delicate skin from the sun or hair from the elements, or protecting one’s head in drafty rooms, headdresses took on many other functions. They denoted class and economic status, as well as fashion sense and one’s marital state. Hats were also worn as a sign of respect, inside a church, for instance, and this custom remained widely popular until well into the 20th-century.

    Lace caps, mob caps, or draped caps, were made of lace, white linen or delicate muslin, and trimmed with ribbon. They could be ruffled, embroidered, or plain, depending on who wore them and their status. A housekeeper, for example, would wear a more elaborate cap than a scullery maid, whose mob cap was simple by comparison. In Pride and Prejudice 1995, Mrs. Bennet wore such frilly caps with so many ruffles and trimmings that they complimented her image as a silly woman. One can imagine how much fancier her caps were than her maid’s!

    Trimming and redecorating old bonnets provided a topic of conversation for women of all ages and social strata. In her novels and letters, Jane Austen frequently mentioned trimming new hats and making over old bonnets as a female activity. According to Penelope Byrde in A Frivolous Distinction, it was quite the fad during the last decade of the 18th century to adorn hats and bonnets with artificial fruits and flowers. As Jane Austen wrote Cassandra in June, 1799 (tongue in cheek we suspect):

    Flowers are very much worn, & Fruit is still more the thing – Eliz: has a bunch of Strawberries, & I have seen Grapes, Cherries, Plumbs & Apricots – There are likewise Almonds& raisins, french plums & Tamarinds at the Grocers, but I have never seen any of them in hats.

    In addition to professional milliners and modistes, there was quite a large cottage industry for making caps, hats, and turbans from home, which provided a meager salary for women who needed the income. The materials used in making headdresses were as varied as their styles: straw (chip or strip), beaver, velvet, silk, crape, satin, muslin or cloth (Byrde, p 6). Trims included ribbons, the above mentioned artificial fruits and flowers, veils, net, lace, or feathers, and even beads, pins, and brooches.

    For a more detailed explanation of the headdresses worn during this era and to view additional illustrations, please click on the following links.

    • Hats and Bonnets, Victoriana: Scroll to the bottom of this page to see illustrations from 1811 and 1812.
    • Fileblogs, Regency Caps, Linore Rose Burkhart: Linore describes the various hat styles in this link, along with materials and trims.

    For people interested in ordering their own Regency caps, or in trying their hand at making a bonnet, the following links will lead you to patterns, suppliers, and resources:

    • Louise MacDonald Millinery (link suggested by Laurel Ann, see above image). Louise created the caps for Pride & Prejudice 1995, and describes making them for the movie.

    Byrde, Penelope, A Frivolous Distinction: Fashion and Needlework in the works of Jane Austen, Bath City Council, 1979.

    Four Hundred Years of Fashion, Victoria and Albert Museum, edited by Natalie Rothstein, V&A Publications, 1984.

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    Want a chance to win a Becoming Jane DVD? Go to the Jane Austen Today blog and enter an icon of Tom Lefroy or Jane Austen, like Kayla did last fall. View contest rules here.

    Adore Josh Groban? Lady Jane from A Lady’s Diversions is giving away a free CD of Awake. All you need to do is leave a comment. She’ll draw names from a hat, and voila! You might be the winner!

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    One of my favorite blogs on the blogosphere is ::Surroundings:: by interior designer Linda Merrill. Linda, who is a fan of the 1995 version of Pride and Prejudice, has been hard at work finding scrumptious pieces of furniture and objects d’art that would fit perfectly inside Netherfield Park, Longbourn, and Pemberley. Click on the following links to view her interior shots of these fabulous houses and some of the objects you can order today.

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    Rowlandson illustration from Wikipedia

    ‘What a charming amusement for young people this is, Mr. Darcy! There is nothing like dancing, after all. I consider it as one of the first refinements of polished societies.’

    ‘Certainly, sir; and it has the advantage also of being in vogue amongst the less polished societies of the world; every savage can dance.’

    Sir William only smiled. ‘Your friend performs delightfully,’ he continued, after a pause, on seeing Bingley join the group; ‘and I doubt not that you are an adept in the science yourself, Mr. Darcy.’

    ‘You saw me dance at Meryton, I believe, sir.’

    ‘Yes, indeed, and received no inconsiderable pleasure from the sight.
    - Conversation between Sir William Lucas and Mr. Darcy, Pride and Prejudice, Chapter VI.

    Dances figure prominently in Jane Austen’s novels. Whether performed in public assembly rooms in Meryton or in private at the Netherfield Ball, dances offered social opportunities for young people to mix and mingle and converse in an acceptable fashion. In an era when a young lady of good breeding was strictly chaperoned and escorted everywhere she went, she would find it difficult during a routine day to meet privately with a single gentleman, even one who was courting her. Indeed, such conduct was strictly forbidden (and the reason why Marianne Dashwood’s behavior with Willoughby was considered shockingly forward). The ballroom, however, afforded a social situation in which a couple could arrange to be together for one or two sets. Since a dance would often last for half an hour, the dancers had ample time to converse, flirt, and even touch one another in an accepted manner.

    A gentleman would, of course, never ask a young lady to dance unless he was first introduced to her. This is one of the reasons why Henry Tilney made sure to arrange a formal introduction to Catherine Morland and Mrs. Allen through the Master of Ceremonies.

    During this era people were often judged for their ability to dance skillfully, and a gentleman was pressured to cut a fine figure on the dance floor. In his advice to his son about manners and deportment, Lord Chesterfield wrote: “Now to acquire a graceful air, you must attend to your dancing; no one can either sit, stand or walk well, unless he dances well. And in learning to dance, be particularly attentive to the motion of your arms for a stiffness in the wrist will make any man look awkward. If a man walks well, presents himself well in company, wears his hat well, moves his head properly, and his arms gracefully, it is almost all that is necessary.”

    It is notable that Mr.Collins movements are awkward, and that his conduct on the dance floor mortifies Lizzy: “The first two dances, however, brought a return of distress; they were dances of mortification. Mr Collins, awkward and solemn, apologising instead of attending, and often moving wrong without being aware of it, gave her all the shame and misery which a disagreeable partner for a couple of dances can give. The moment of her release from him was exstasy.” (Pride and Prejudice) Mr. Collins’ ineptness as a dancer would have been immediately understood by the contemporary reader to mean that he was not a polished gentleman. To compound his lack of manners, he boldly walks up to Mr. Darcy to introduce himself.

    Young ladies and gentlemen practiced their dancing steps, belying Mr. Darcy’s assertion that “every savage can dance.” Professional dancing masters were employed to ensure that a young lady and gentleman learned the steps to a variety of intricate dance movements. Such instruction also helped a young gentleman to keep his bearing upright. Lord Chesterfield wrote his son, who was taking The Grand Tour, “Remember to take the best dancing-master at Berlin, more to teach you to sit, stand, and walk gracefully, than to dance finely. The Graces, the Graces; remember the Graces! Adieu!” Learning the steps was easier said than done, since “between 1730-1830 over twenty-seven thousand country dances with their tunes were published in England alone.” Thankfully, the Master of Ceremonies would choose only a certain number of dances to be performed for the evening, most likely consisting of the most fashionable dances of that particular year.* (Thompson, The Felicities of Rapid Motion)

    The most important lady present would open the ball by dancing the first set, as Elizabeth Elliot did as the eldest daughter. Emma Woodhouse would have also been given the honors. Mr. Darcy’s rank and friendship with Mr. Bingley most likely put his position at the top of the line of dancers. Thus, when he asks Elizabeth to dance at the Netherfield Ball they would figure prominently in the line of dancers. The other couples in a country dance set would follow the lead of the top couple, and progressively work their way down the line. Sets of five to eight couples were popular during this period, with partners standing opposite each other as the other couples completed a sequence of movements

    Standing and facing each other in line, therefore, was typical for couples engaged in a country dance. However, they were expected to make some conversation as they waited for the next movement. A gentleman, if he applied himself, could skillfully lead the conversation and put a young lady at ease, or pretend to be interested in any topic she brought up. Mr. Darcy chose to remain silent.

    They stood for some time without speaking a word; and she began to imagine that their silence was to last through the two dances, and at first was resolved not to break it; till suddenly fancying that it would be the greater punishment to her partner to oblige him to talk, she made some slight observation on the dance. He replied, and was again silent. After a pause of some minutes, she addressed him a second time with:

    “It is your turn to say something now, Mr. Darcy. — I talked about the dance, and you ought to make some kind of remark on the size of the room, or the number of couples.”

    He smiled, and assured her that whatever she wished him to say should be said.

    “Very well. — That reply will do for the present. — Perhaps by and by I may observe that private balls are much pleasanter than public ones. — But now we may be silent.”

    “Do you talk by rule then, while you are dancing?”

    “Sometimes. One must speak a little, you know. It would look odd to be entirely silent for half an hour together, and yet for the advantage of some, conversation ought to be so arranged as that they may have the trouble of saying as little as as possible.” – Pride & Prejudice, Volume 1, Chapter 18

    In a public assembly, where people paid a fee to attend, people from various walks of life would come in contact with one another. “Aristocrats would interact with gentry, tradespeople, or even servants who were called in to make up a set if there were not enough couples…” (Sullivan, p 168). Mr. Darcy chose to dance only with Mrs. Hurst and Miss Bingley at the public assembly rooms in Meryton, thereby displeasing a wide variety of people, particularly Mrs. Bennet, who was vocal about her displeasure, for there was a scarcity of gentlemen and Lizzy had been forced to sit out two dances. For her part, once a lady refused a gentleman, she was honor bound to pass on other invitations to dance for the rest of the evening.

    Private balls became more popular towards the end of the century, when many grand houses began to boast their own ballrooms. At private affairs, the host and hostess could invite the ‘right’ sort of people. These balls were not only more selective, but they provided music played by more professional musicians, and offered delicious and elaborate refreshments as well.

    Illustration from The English Folk Dance and Song Society

    Mr. Beveridge’s Maggot is the music featured at the Netherfield Ball in Pride and Prejudice 1995 (You can listen to it by clicking on the YouTube video above). The piece was written by Johan Playford in 1695, and published in Playford’s Dancing Master, a country dance guidebook. Maggot in those days meant “favorite,” and the term probably was used in conjunction with a favorite dance. “Today there are two modern versions of the dance – one published by Pat Shaw and one by Cecil Sharp. Shaw’s version of Mr. Beveridge’s Maggot is generally accepted to be the most authentic since it follows the AAB structure of the music, and Playford clearly states that the second, or B, line of music should be ‘played but once’.”

    Links and Resources:

    Festival Ball Tickets for September 27, 2008 are now on sale at The Jane Austen Centre, Bath. Tickets this year are £65. To purchase tickets and for further information on the ball and dance workshop taking place in the afternoon of the ball, contact Farthingales or call 44 (0)1225 471919

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    This rare 1791 edition of Les Amours de Psyché et de Cupidon at David Brass Rare Books features lovely illutstrations of Cupid and Psyche. Happy Valentine’s Day!

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    When 20-year-old Jane Austen (Anne Hathaway) meets up with the roguish Tom Lefroy (James McAvoy), sparks begin to fly. Initially repelled by his arrogance, the emerging writer slowly realizes that she has finally found a man who appreciates her intellect as well as her beauty. As her parents (Julie Walters and James Cromwell) arrange a wealthy, aristocratic husband for her, Jane begins a clandestine romance with Lefroy. The young man proposes marriage, but his wealthy guardian, who holds his purse strings, disapproves of Jane’s outspoken manner and ambition to be a writer, and threatens to cut Tom off. In a world where marriage determines a woman’s fate, will they risk everything, including family and friends, for the sake of romance?

    The wonderful surprise about the new Becoming Jane DVD, also available in Blu-Ray, is the intelligent commentary about the film between Director Julian Jarrold, Writer Kevin Hood, and Producer Robert Bernstein. I was able to activate the pop-up footnotes at the same time, doubling the annotations to this breezy movie about Jane Austen’s life. In addition, the author of Jane Austen for Dummies and past president of the Jane Austen Society of America, Joan Klingel Ray, contributes her insights to the bonus feature, ‘Discovering the Real Jane Austen.’ The combination of these added features, with their rich array of facts about Jane’s life and the regency era, greatly enriched my experience of this DVD. We find out, for example, that Anne Hathaway, a Vassar graduate, learned to play the piano for the role. During the opening scene when she wakes her family up, the piano did not work. We also learn that Tom and Jane’s elopement would have cost them approximately 10 pounds per person, or around £340 in today’s terms. They would also have had to tip the coachman and the guard. These small but intriguing bits of information kept my eyes glued to the screen for the next footnote balloon.

    I was not an admirer of this film when it hit the theaters in the U.S. last summer. And I still think of it as being more a fairytale treatment of Jane’s life as a young woman, than an accurate biography. I found it doubly interesting to view this DVD so shortly after PBS’s airing of Miss Austen Regrets, the second filmed Jane Austen biography to come out this year. While Becoming Jane is about Jane Austen as a young woman just before she writes First Impressions, the first title of Pride and Prejudice, the more somber Miss Austen Regrets follows Jane in the last two years of her life, when she is at the peak of her writing powers. The contrast in tone and style between the two movies couldn’t be greater, yet both are lushly produced and beautifully filmed. Becoming Jane starts out with youthful optimism, and although Jane encounters disappointments and setbacks, the film never quite loses its breezy tone. Indeed, here’s what The Oregonian says about the DVD:

    LOVE AND/OR MARRIAGE: In “Becoming Jane” — aka this week’s Jane Austen-themed movie — Anne Hathaway (“The Devil Wears Prada”) plays the author as a young woman. In the spirit of countless adaptations of Austen’s novels, Jane here is torn between marrying for love or money. The script embroiders some of the few known facts about Austen’s romantic life, but with dreamy James McAvoy (“Atonement”) along for the ride as Jane’s love interest, we can forgive a bit of poetic license, can we not?

    If you missed watching this film in theaters, the DVD will be widely available today either for sale or rent.

    To preview some of the clips and features, click on the following links:

    DVD Specs

    DVD Available : February 12, 2008
    Feature run time: 120 minutes
    Rated: PG

    Bonus Features

    • Discovering the Real Jane Austen – The best known author of her era, she continues to sell books and inspire films almost two hundred years after her death, but what do we really know about Jane Austen? Find out some surprising truths in this fascinating featurette.
    • Becoming Jane Pop-Up Facts & Footnotes – Interactive insights
    • Audio Commentary with director Julian Jarrold, writer Kevin Hood and producer Robert Bernstein
    • 13 Deleted Scenes

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    A single man of large fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine thing for our girls! - Mrs. Bennet on Mr. Bingley’s income, Pride and Prejudice, Volume One, Chapter One

    One of the hardest concepts for today’s readers to grasp in Jane Austen’s novels are the economic realities of the times. What do her numbers mean in modern terms? What was the standard of living during the regency era? When Olivia Williams as Jane Austen blurted to her brother Henry in Miss Austen Regrets, “Sense and Sensibility has brought me £140. May I not be proud of that?” – how can we translate that sentence so that it would hold some meaning for us?

    A currency converter provided by the National Archives in the U.K. provides a rough idea of what these 1810 figures mean. Further clarification from experts will round out our understanding. Please keep in mind that the sums in the third column of the chart are merely approximations. At this precise time U.S. citizens should multiply these figures by two to derive a dollar amount. I am not an expert, and I will leave more detailed explanations to economists like Brad de Long.

    To put some of these sums into perspective, the average annual income for an English laborer or farmer in 1800 was around 15-20 pounds. To live comfortably, an English gentleman like Mr. Bennet, would require around 300 pounds per year per individual, or over fifteen times the amount for a working man who supported his family. As you can see from the figures, as long as Mr. Bennet lived, his family was comfortably off. But the situation would change drastically the moment he died. After that unhappy event, Mrs. Bennet would be expected to live off the 4% interest of her £5,000 marriage settlement, or £200 per year. No wonder she became shrill every time she thought of her unmarried daughters, for Mr. Bennet’s entire yearly £2,000 income and his house were entailed to Mr. Collins. After Mrs. Bennet’s death, Lizzy would receive just 1/5 of her mother’s marriage portion, and she would bring to her marriage only 40 pounds per year.

    Today it is hard to accurately determine the spending power of these sums (see the different estimates of Mr. Bingley’s income in the example below). Factors that influence spending power are war, inflation, cost of goods, housing and the geographic area in which the dwellings were located. In any event, Mr. Darcy’s and Mr. Bingley’s incomes would still be regarded as exceedingly fine. In fact, Mr. Darcy’s 10,000 per year represents only 4% interest of his vast fortune. And Mr. Bingley, though he receives only 4,000 per year, inherited almost 3.4 million pounds from his tradesman father in today’s terms.

    …the income would normally come from agricultural profits on land or from other property and investments (in Bingley’s case it turns out the be the latter). It is not easy to translate incomes of the time into today’s money. By some calculations, the effects of inflation mean that a pound in Jane Austen’s time has the same value as almost forty pounds today; if so, Bingley’s income would be the equivalent of 150,000 to 200,000 a year in today’s pounds (or around $250,000-$300,000 in current U.S. money). Altered economic condition, however, make estimates like this tricky: for example, goods tended to be much dearer at that time, in relative terms, while labor tended to be much cheaper. In addition, average incomes in this period, even when adjusted for inflation, were much lower than today, so Bingley’s income represents a far sharper deviation from the prevailing norm than its current equivalent would be.” – Shapard, Annotated Pride and Prejudice, P 5

    One can now understand why in Sense and Sensibility Mrs. Dashwood and her daughters were forced to economize. When John Dashwood, under his wife’s influence, reneged on his promise to his dying father to contribute substantial sums of money to his step family, the women were forced to live on 500 pounds per year. This paltry sum would have barely covered their living expenses had it not been for Sir John Middleton’s generosity in inviting his cousin to live in a cottage on his estate.

    Like the Dashwood women, Jane Austen, her mother, and sister also experienced chronic money worry. However, through the sale of her books Jane was able to earn a much needed supplemental income. While the £140 she earned from the sales of Sense and Sensibility does not sound like much, it represents close to $9,800 in today’s U.S. sums. In fact, the proceeds from the sale of her four books netted her over 23,000 pounds or around 46,000 dollars towards the end of her life. After her brother Henry’s financial reversals, this money must have been a welcome boon indeed.

    Now that you’ve gained some understanding of what these sums of money mean, please read the following statement made by Mrs. Bennet in Volume 3 of Pride and Prejudice, Chapter 17:

    Dear, dear Lizzy. A house in town! Every thing that is charming! Three daughters married! Ten thousand a year! Oh, Lord! What will become of me. I shall go distracted.

    How much does ten thousand a year in 1810 represent?
    a) £339, 600
    b) $680,000
    c) A princely sum
    d) In relative terms, all of the above

    Georgianna Darcy’s marriage portion is 30,000. How much annual income would this sum derive?

    a) £3,000
    b) £12,000
    c) £1,200
    d) £120
    Sources and resources:

    • Shapard, David M., The Annotated Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen, Anchor Books, 2004
    *References, Acknowledgements, Links, and Abbreviations, For the Male Voices Web Site
    **Literary Study Tour: Jane Austen, 1998
    ***Ian Littlewood, Jane Austen: A Critical Assessment, p 205, 1998

    Addendum:

    To learn more about the ‘Cost of Living in Jane Austen’s England: Vulgar Economy’, click here . This article from the Jane Austen Centre goes into further detail about the Mrs. and Misses Dashwoods’ economic situation.

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    I wrote a half hearted review about this movie, based largely on the somber tone of the film, which sometimes belied the beautiful words Olivia Williams as Jane spoke.

    But not everyone felt as I did. Kay Daycus wrote a beautiful response to the film just after she saw it. And Laurel Ann on Remotely Connected also thought it was wonderful, saying:
    “When she dies tragically at age forty-one, we feel the incredible loss of a dear daughter, sister, aunt and friend, whose ultimate writing potential will never be known.”

    Arti wonders if the title should have been changed to “Miss Austen Regrets?” Like me, she thought Jane would have felt more fulfillment than the movie depicted.

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