Jane Austen died today 198 years ago. Now I’ve loved Jane Austen most of my life. There are few authors about whom every single book can be considered works of genius. Most authors will have at least one or two books which are really only a good average. Not so Jane Austen. While undoubtedly some of her books are better than others, each in their own right is brilliant and everyone will have a different favourite. For me it has varied with age. My first love, and indeed first exposure was Pride and Prejudice. As a teenager it was Emma. Now as adult it has to Persuasion. With the benefit of age I can laugh at Emma’s almost childish belief in her own powers of perception or Darcy and Elizabeth’s stubbornness, and I can appreciate the wisdom and self control of Anne Eliot.
Certainly there are few authors have so expertly captured society and its idiosyncrasies. Even now her books can make us laugh and cry in equal measure. This combined with her wit ensure their status as beloved classics.
I leave you with some of my favourite Jane Austen quote. Why not leave a comment with your favourite Austen quote.
“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.”
― Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice
“but for my own part, if a book is well written, I always find it too short.”
― Jane Austen
“I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever.”
― Jane Austen, Persuasion
“Friendship is certainly the finest balm for the pangs of disappointed love.”
― Jane Austen
“It isn’t what we say or think that defines us, but what we do.”
― Jane Austen, Sense and Sensibility
“I always deserve the best treatment because I never put up with any other.”
― Jane Austen, Emma
Three cheers for the wonderful Jane Austen.
P.S For anyone interested during August there will be the annual Austen in August read-a-thon hosted by Roof Beam Reader. I’ll certainly be taking part.