Monday, 26 June 2017

Jane Austen's House - Chawton

On Saturday we had a lovely family day out to Jane Austen's House. Such a lovely cottage and gardens, and so interesting.

(From the website)

In this house Jane revised the three manuscripts she had written previously, but which had remained unpublished, wrote three more novels and started one more, which was destined to remain unfinished before illness overtook her. Jane left the cottage for the last time in May 1817 to take lodgings near her physician in Winchester. She died only a few months later on the 18 July and was buried in Winchester Cathedral.

Jane’s mother and sister, Cassandra, continued to live at the cottage for the rest of their lives. When Cassandra died in 1845 the cottage was split in three dwelling for labourers on the Chawton estate. The cottage remained in this state until it was put up for sale in 1947.

After an appeal in The Times by the Jane Austen Society, the cottage was bought by Mr. T.E. Carpenter who turned it into a Museum dedicated to the life and works of Jane Austen. Mr. Carpenter presented the house to the nation in 1949, in memory of his son Lieutenant Philip John Carpenter who fell in the battle in Lake Trasimene in June 1944. The Museum has been open to the public ever since.

The Museum today reflects the comfortable family home that the Austen women created while telling the story of their lives and Jane’s work.

The Bake House


Family Dining Room

An outfit as worn by Jane.

Cottage Gardens

Writing Quill and Ink

Trying to write Jane style!

Dressing up in traditional dress
 We tried some old fashioned games in the garden,

they were so much fun 😀.

 Afterwards I bought some books in the shop. The two novels are my favourites from long ago, Emma and Mansfield Park, and I found a lovely children's book for Hannah. It tells the story of Pride and Prejudice through the eyes of Elizabeth Bennet - the main character in the book.

About the book
Published to coincide with the 200th anniversary of Pride and Prejudice, this is a glorious retelling of Jane Austen's most famous novel from the point of view of Lizzy Bennet, its feisty heroine. The story of Pride and Prejudice, told through Lizzy Bennet's secret diary. A beautifully detailed and completely fresh take on one of the best-loved stories in English literature. Readers will feel as though they've stepped into Austen's world: the book is packed with Lizzy's drawings, pressed flowers, ribbons from her bonnet, hand-written notes to fold out and read, dance cards, invitations, and even a letter from Mr Darcy...

We had a lovely time, and will definitely visit again (especially as the tickets are valid for a whole year!) 

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