Category Archives: Literary References

Giving Thanks with Austen

Giving Thanks with Austen

With my regularly scheduled blog appearing this year on Thanksgiving, I wondered whether there was any formal giving of thanks in Jane Austen’s work. The November U.S. holiday has spread to most of the Americas. The English have a more general harvest-related tradition of providing bread and other food to the poor, often through the… more goodness …

Commemorating 40 Years, and 400

Commemorating 40 Years, and 400

Today’s blog provides a capsule of the recent Annual General Meeting of the Jane Austen Society of North America, in Williamsburg, VA. The week involved history, pageantry, and good manners—and that was outside the conference halls. It was the 40th anniversary of the founding of JASNA, and the 400th commemoration of major events in Virginia’s… more goodness …

A Book Club for Jane Austen’s Novels, Part 1: Sense and Sensibility

A Book Club for Jane Austen’s Novels, Part 1: Sense and Sensibility

I live in a retirement community where the connecting buildings house over a thousand residents. The management encourages us to start clubs or activities. I started a club devoted to reading Jane Austen’s novels. Although I want the discussion to be able to go in any direction, as long as it is about the novels,… more goodness …

Top 10 Goofs in Persuasion (2007)

Top 10 Goofs in Persuasion (2007)

Repeated watchings of this adaptation of Persuasion over the past few weeks has been fun. If this post was a review of the film, I would have lots of good things to say, but alas, this is another “goofs” post, so I’m going to start griping right out the gate. My opening complaint is about… more goodness …

‘It was certainly a very remarkable coincidence!’

‘It was certainly a very remarkable coincidence!’

“It was certainly a very remarkable coincidence!”—Northanger Abbey. Writing from roughly 1795 on, Jane Austen is usually seen as the last major writer of the 18th century. In many novels of that century, plot coincidences were not only accepted, they were expected. It was a big coincidence if there were not major coincidences driving the… more goodness …

“It was a delightful visit;—perfect, in being much too short.” – Emma, Chapter Thirteen

“It was a delightful visit;—perfect, in being much too short.” – Emma, Chapter Thirteen

I’ve long loved travel. It’s a passion my parents sort of had to force on me, but once it took hold, I was hooked. Journeys, even short ones, have a remarkable ability to change your perceptions, even of those things most familiar and dear. I had a startling reminder of this while traveling with my… more goodness …

No New Book or Giveaway, but a Short Story…

No New Book or Giveaway, but a Short Story…

I’m sorry to say that we are not ready to have a giveaway this month. A Duel in Meryton (formerly Wickham’s Hertfordshire Duel) isn’t ready. It is close. It will probably be available in a month. But Summer and I don’t want to put ourselves in a position where we rush through the final edits at the… more goodness …

Did Jane Austen Write Romance Novels?

Did Jane Austen Write Romance Novels?

Happy 4th of July to our United States readers! We realize July 4th is not a holiday everywhere. In fact, it’s not a holiday most places. A lot of us can agree, though (if we don’t have traumatized kitties and puppies!), that 4th of July firework displays are something amazing to see, and that it’s… more goodness …

Loving Mr. Bennet

Loving Mr. Bennet

I’ve always liked Mr. Bennet as a character in Pride and Prejudice. He’s sarcastic and funny, he provides several priceless moments, and is Elizabeth’s true supporter, sometimes in direct confrontation with his wife. I am well aware that in looking after her daughters’ needs (i.e. wishing to see them married) Mrs. Bennet feels like she… more goodness …

More Questions—More Answers!—on Austen’s Life and Times

More Questions—More Answers!—on Austen’s Life and Times

Last month’s pop quiz was so much fun that we’ll do another one today. These questions go somewhat further afield, so they may tax your Regency knowledge. As before, there’s no rhyme or reason to topic order. Today’s quiz has twenty-five questions. The answers appear below each question to avoid vertigo from excessive scrolling. Ratings:… more goodness …

Numerous Scandals Associated with Hertfordshire’s Brocket Hall

Numerous Scandals Associated with Hertfordshire’s Brocket Hall

The official Brocket Hall website tells us, “Brocket Hall has one of the most intriguing of any of the great houses of Britain. Indeed the scent of scandal can be found in the fabric of the building back to its roots in the 13th Century right up to the present day.” If you are a fan of… more goodness …

Mirrors of the Mind, Part One

Mirrors of the Mind, Part One

His countenance, voice, and manner had established him at once in the possession of every virtue. She tried to recollect some instance of goodness, some distinguished trait of integrity or benevolence, that might rescue him from the attacks of Mr. Darcy; or at least, by the predominance of virtue, atone for those casual errors, under… more goodness …

Pop Quiz for All You Students Suffering Spring Fever

Pop Quiz for All You Students Suffering Spring Fever

Today brings a little fun and games in celebration of spring. (It comes late to the high desert in Oregon. Our trees are just now in bloom. See the dogwood by the headline.) Today’s blog features a quiz on a variety of Jane Austen topics. There’s no rhyme or reason to topics or order. The… more goodness …