Last month I wrote about my trip to the Morgan Library in New York to view A Woman’s Wit:Jane Austen’s Life and Legacy, and of my impressions of the letters.
But I didn’t mention the many other interesting artifacts: the Gillray prints of a lady dressing and Rowlandson’s caricature of The Comforts of Bath,
the books that Jane owned,
a lovely steel engraved oval image of her,
an original copy of the Memoir of Jane Austen, fair copies of the first 7 letters of Lady Susan,
a rough 12-page fragment of The Watsons, a watercolor by Paul Sandby,
and a well-known image from An Analysis of Country Dances by Wilson, 1811.
An account of Jane’s personal purchases of a little over 42 pounds for the year (1807), Isabel Bishop’s images for Pride and Prejudice,
and the correspondence between Jane and Cassandra, her letter to Francis Talbot, the Countess of Morley and a letter from the Prince Regent’s librarian, James Clarke add to our knowledge of her world.
There were artifacts from Byron and Fanny Burney and Sir Walter Scott, and more images than I can recall so many weeks later.
Which brings me to my only (and major) disappointment with this exhibit: no catalogue. Thankfully, I can reconstruct my memory of the visit from my notes, images I have gleaned online or taken myself, and from a list provided by the Morgan Library (see the link below.) For anyone who lives within striking distance of the Morgan Library, you have until March 14th to travel to New York. The exhibition room might be small, but it is filled with treasures and is well worth the effort.
View PBS’s video of the Jane Austen exhibit at the Morgan Library on YouTube.
- Jane Austen at the Morgan Library, my first post about the exhibit
- A Woman’s Wit: Jane Austen and her Letters, my second post about the exhibit
- Art Knowledge news
- Listen to a 15-minute podcast interview with Declan Kiely, the show’s organizer, and Sarah Drummond, the assistant curator of the Morgan Library at this link.
- Click here to view a ten-page PDF document of all the artifacts shown in the exhibit.
- The Morgan Library link to the exhibition