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Archive for June, 2009

More photos of gorgeous Lyme!






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More photos of gorgeous Lyme!






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There is an article in the Times today which tells of a young boy’s attempt to save the Three Cups Inn in Lyme Regis – pictured left. Thank you Laurel Ann of Austenprose for the alert! Although the article states that Jane Austen stayed here, there was in fact another earlier Three Cups Inn which was further down Broad Street – the original building was burnt down in 1844 and then re-built in its present position according to the Austen expert and author Maggie Lane. As Jane died in 1817 she couldn’t have stayed at the present inn. I have seen a print of the original position of the Three Cups Inn when I was drawing the map for Maggie Lane’s book, Jane Austen and Lyme Regis and this was clearly used as inspiration for Philip Gough’s illustration below. The Three Cups is the yellow building on the left. It is thought this was also most likely to have been the inspiration for the inn in which the party from Uppercross stayed when they visited Lyme.
From Jane Austen’s Persuasion:
After securing accommodations, and ordering a dinner at one of the inns, the next thing to be done was unquestionably to walk directly down to the sea. They were come too late in the year for any amusement or variety which Lyme as a public place, might offer. The rooms were shut up, the lodgers almost all gone, scarcely any family but of the residents left; and as there is nothing to admire in the buildings themselves, the remarkable situation of the town, the principal street almost hurrying into the water, the walk to the Cobb, skirting round the pleasant little bay, which in the season is animated with bathing-machines and company; the Cobb itself, its old wonders and new improvements, with the very beautiful line of cliffs stretching out to the east of the town, are what the stranger’s eye will seek…

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There is an article in the Times today which tells of a young boy’s attempt to save the Three Cups Inn in Lyme Regis – pictured left. Thank you Laurel Ann of Austenprose for the alert! Although the article states that Jane Austen stayed here, there was in fact another earlier Three Cups Inn which was further down Broad Street – the original building was burnt down in 1844 and then re-built in its present position according to the Austen expert and author Maggie Lane. As Jane died in 1817 she couldn’t have stayed at the present inn. I have seen a print of the original position of the Three Cups Inn when I was drawing the map for Maggie Lane’s book, Jane Austen and Lyme Regis and this was clearly used as inspiration for Philip Gough’s illustration below. The Three Cups is the yellow building on the left. It is thought this was also most likely to have been the inspiration for the inn in which the party from Uppercross stayed when they visited Lyme.
From Jane Austen’s Persuasion:
After securing accommodations, and ordering a dinner at one of the inns, the next thing to be done was unquestionably to walk directly down to the sea. They were come too late in the year for any amusement or variety which Lyme as a public place, might offer. The rooms were shut up, the lodgers almost all gone, scarcely any family but of the residents left; and as there is nothing to admire in the buildings themselves, the remarkable situation of the town, the principal street almost hurrying into the water, the walk to the Cobb, skirting round the pleasant little bay, which in the season is animated with bathing-machines and company; the Cobb itself, its old wonders and new improvements, with the very beautiful line of cliffs stretching out to the east of the town, are what the stranger’s eye will seek…

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I thought you’d like to see these treasures – a collection of lace, bonnet, gloves, glasses and ivory counters that belonged to Jane and the Austen family. They are on display in the museum at Lyme – donated by Mrs Diana Shervington. I was lucky enough to hear this fascinating lady speak at a conference in Lyme a few years ago. She brought along some other pieces from her collection – I particularly remember a strikingly beautiful red feather cockade that Jane wore in her bonnet and thinking that this was no accessory for a shy, retiring country spinster. Mrs Shervington was most generous with her time and gave a really entertaining talk on her illustrious ancestor – she is descended from the Knight family. Full of humour and with so many stories to tell I couldn’t help thinking that I had come face to face with Jane herself. She will be giving a talk at the museum in Lyme at 11 am on 30th June 2009 – for a full list of events in Lyme please click here
The glasses apparently belonged to Jane’s mother. The lace and gloves are exquisite and so very tiny – the Austen women must have had very delicate hands. The counters are the type used in card games as mentioned in Pride and Prejudice – ‘Lydia talked incessantly of lottery tickets, of the fish she had lost and the fish she had won’. The small sticks of ivory and bone are used in a game called spillikins where each player has to remove them one at a time by using a hook without disturbing the rest of the pile.

The alphabet letters reminded me of this passage from Emma by Jane Austen.

“Miss Woodhouse,” said Frank Churchill, after examining a table behind him, which he could reach as he sat, “have your nephews taken away their alphabets – their box of letters? It used to stand here. Where is it? This is a sort of dull-looking evening, that ought to be treated rather as winter than summer. We had great amusement with those letters one morning. I want to puzzle you again.”

Emma was pleased with the thought; and producing the box, the table was quickly scattered over with alphabets, which no one seemed so much disposed to employ as their two selves. They were rapidly forming words for each other, or for any body else who would be puzzled. The quietness of the game made it particularly eligible for Mr. Woodhouse, who had often been distressed by the more animated sort, which Mr. Weston had occasionally introduced, and who now sat happily occupied in lamenting, with tender melancholy, over the departure of the “poor little boys,” or in fondly pointing out, as he took up any stray letter near him, how beautifully Emma had written it.

Frank Churchill placed a word before Miss Fairfax. She gave a slight glance round the table, and applied herself to it. Frank was next to Emma, Jane opposite to them – and Mr. Knightley so placed as to see them all; and it was his object to see as much as he could, with as little apparent observation. The word was discovered, and with a faint smile pushed away. If meant to be immediately mixed with the others, and buried from sight, she should have looked on the table instead of looking just across, for it was not mixed; and Harriet, eager after every fresh word, and finding out none, directly took it up, and fell to work. She was sitting by Mr. Knightley, and turned to him for help. The word was blunder; and as Harriet exultingly proclaimed it, there was a blush on Jane’s cheek which gave it a meaning not otherwise ostensible. Mr. Knightley connected it with the dream; but how it could all be, was beyond his comprehension. How the delicacy, the discretion of his favourite could have been so lain asleep! He feared there must be some decided involvement. Disingenuousness and double-dealing seemed to meet him at every turn. These letters were but the vehicle for gallantry and trick. It was a child’s play, chosen to conceal a deeper game on Frank Churchill’s part.

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I thought you’d like to see these treasures – a collection of lace, bonnet, gloves, glasses and ivory counters that belonged to Jane and the Austen family. They are on display in the museum at Lyme – donated by Mrs Diana Shervington. I was lucky enough to hear this fascinating lady speak at a conference in Lyme a few years ago. She brought along some other pieces from her collection – I particularly remember a strikingly beautiful red feather cockade that Jane wore in her bonnet and thinking that this was no accessory for a shy, retiring country spinster. Mrs Shervington was most generous with her time and gave a really entertaining talk on her illustrious ancestor – she is descended from the Knight family. Full of humour and with so many stories to tell I couldn’t help thinking that I had come face to face with Jane herself. She will be giving a talk at the museum in Lyme at 11 am on 30th June 2009 – for a full list of events in Lyme please click here
The glasses apparently belonged to Jane’s mother. The lace and gloves are exquisite and so very tiny – the Austen women must have had very delicate hands. The counters are the type used in card games as mentioned in Pride and Prejudice – ‘Lydia talked incessantly of lottery tickets, of the fish she had lost and the fish she had won’. The small sticks of ivory and bone are used in a game called spillikins where each player has to remove them one at a time by using a hook without disturbing the rest of the pile.

The alphabet letters reminded me of this passage from Emma by Jane Austen.

“Miss Woodhouse,” said Frank Churchill, after examining a table behind him, which he could reach as he sat, “have your nephews taken away their alphabets – their box of letters? It used to stand here. Where is it? This is a sort of dull-looking evening, that ought to be treated rather as winter than summer. We had great amusement with those letters one morning. I want to puzzle you again.”

Emma was pleased with the thought; and producing the box, the table was quickly scattered over with alphabets, which no one seemed so much disposed to employ as their two selves. They were rapidly forming words for each other, or for any body else who would be puzzled. The quietness of the game made it particularly eligible for Mr. Woodhouse, who had often been distressed by the more animated sort, which Mr. Weston had occasionally introduced, and who now sat happily occupied in lamenting, with tender melancholy, over the departure of the “poor little boys,” or in fondly pointing out, as he took up any stray letter near him, how beautifully Emma had written it.

Frank Churchill placed a word before Miss Fairfax. She gave a slight glance round the table, and applied herself to it. Frank was next to Emma, Jane opposite to them – and Mr. Knightley so placed as to see them all; and it was his object to see as much as he could, with as little apparent observation. The word was discovered, and with a faint smile pushed away. If meant to be immediately mixed with the others, and buried from sight, she should have looked on the table instead of looking just across, for it was not mixed; and Harriet, eager after every fresh word, and finding out none, directly took it up, and fell to work. She was sitting by Mr. Knightley, and turned to him for help. The word was blunder; and as Harriet exultingly proclaimed it, there was a blush on Jane’s cheek which gave it a meaning not otherwise ostensible. Mr. Knightley connected it with the dream; but how it could all be, was beyond his comprehension. How the delicacy, the discretion of his favourite could have been so lain asleep! He feared there must be some decided involvement. Disingenuousness and double-dealing seemed to meet him at every turn. These letters were but the vehicle for gallantry and trick. It was a child’s play, chosen to conceal a deeper game on Frank Churchill’s part.

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I’ve just been sent my full cover design for my new book Willoughby’s Return which I love. Here is the blurb on the back cover to give you a little flavour of what is to come! Willoughby’s Return will be published in November 2009 – to find out more please click here

An old lover is back,
determined to make trouble…
In Jane Austen’s Sense and Sensibility, when Marianne
Dashwood marries Colonel Brandon, she puts her heartbreak
over dashing scoundrel John Willoughby behind her.
Three years later, Willoughby’s return throws Marianne
into a tizzy of painful memories and exquisite feelings
of uncertainty. Willoughby is as charming, as roguish,
and as much in love with her as ever. And the timing
couldn’t be worse—with Colonel Brandon away and
Willoughby determined to win her back, will Marianne find
the strength to save her marriage, or will the temptation of
a previous love be too powerful to resist?

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