Jane Austen Books

Easton Press Jane Austen books:
Persuasion - 1977
Pride and Prejudice - 1977
Emma - 1983
Sense and Sensibility - 1985

1996 six volume set including:
Pride and Prejudice
Mansfield Park
Northanger Abbey
Sense and Sensibility

Franklin Library Jane Austen books:
Pride and Prejudice - World's Best Loved Books - 1979
Pride and prejudice - 100 Greatest Books of All Time - 1980

Jane Austen, (1775-1817), was a British novelist, born in Steventon, England, and educated at home. She was seventh of eight children. Her father, who was rector of the parish, moved the family to Bath upon his retirement in 1801. After his death Jane Austen lived with her mother and younger sister in Southampton (1805-09) and Chawton (1809-17). In 1817 they moved to Winchester, where she died. She never married.

Jane Austen's first novel, Sense and Sensibility (1811; written before 1796), is a subtle analysis of the romantic belief that sentiment is to be trusted more than common sense and reasonableness. Pride and Prejudice (1813; written in 1796-97) is perhaps her best known work. It concerns the romantic errors of a group of sisters, notably the intelligent but impulsive heroine, Elizabeth. Through experience and painful reconsideration, she alters her first impressions of a neighbor's guest, Fitzwilliam Darcy, and finally marries him. In Northanger Abbey (posthumously published, 1818; written in 1797-98) Jane Austen caricatures the Gothic romance (q.v.), which was extremely popular at the time, and develops her characteristic theme that maturity is achieved through the lost of illusions.

Jane Austen's other novels were written between 1811 and 1816. Mansfield Park (1814) contrasts the modesty and good sense of the heroine with the selfishness of her spoiled cousins. In Emma (1816) the protagonist is a witty but girl whose vanity and self-deceptions involve her in disturbing but educative complications. Persuasion (posthumously published, 1818), deals with a young girl who is influenced by well intentioned but calculating outsiders to break of an engagement. She learns gradually to recognize the wisdom of independent judgment and eventually marries the man to whom she was betrothed. Some biographers of Jane Austen regard this novel as partially autobiographical.

Jane Austen is regarded as one of the greatest English novelist. All her works deal with relationships between young men and women whose faults of character, due often to a deficiency in their upbringing, are corrected by the lessons learned through some tribulation. She depicts the English country gentry participating in the village life with which she was familiar and develops the natures of all her characters, even the most subordinate. In consequence, although the themes of her novels seem unimportant, her treatment of them achieves major significance. Her fidelity to the truths of everyday experience and her delightful sense of vitality, conveyed in a lucid prose style, enable readers to recognize in Jane Austen's works universal patterns of sensibility not found in those of any other novelist

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