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Jane Austen: 1775-1817

June 12, 2017

Jane Austen:  1775-1817

Jane Austen died on July 18, 1817, at the age of 41. We invite you to post a tribute in the Memorial Book in celebration of her life and work and in commemoration of the bicentenary of her death.

This virtual Memorial Book is moderated to prevent spamming and off-topic posts. Comments will not appear immediately.


  • Anne Kavanagh Beachey 18/07/2017 5:29pm (5 days ago)

    Only six novels but they were the best ever written!
    Thank you, Jane.

  • Jackie Mijares 18/07/2017 5:26pm (5 days ago)

    When people ask me why I read Jane Austen, I reply, "because she makes me laugh." I have been sitting in front of the computer screen for the last 20 or 30 minutes thinking of all the ways Jane Austen has affected my reading, my academic career, my friendships, and my life. Her comic genius is timeless, and her characters are so nuanced and rounded, even the minor ones, that it is easy to imagine them all living real lives outside the boundaries of her fiction. I am not the first to say it today, but I want to especially thank you, Jane, for creating wonderful Mrs. Jennings!

  • Sylvia Hom 18/07/2017 5:01pm (5 days ago)

    My Dearest Jane,
    How I wish that you could experience the success and adulation that your writing has garnered in the last 200 years. You continue to delight and inspire us through the wit, humor and wisdom in your six wonderful novels. Your heroines and heroes are, of course, our favorites. But for me, the brilliant supporting characters, including Mr Collins, Miss Bates and Mr & Mrs Bennet give me such great pleasure and hearty laughter at their follies and foibles. Thank you for so many hours of pure enjoyment, insight into and appreciation for the human condition.
    And most of all, thank you for being the inspiration for the best community of people, Janeites, all over the world. When we get together, we experience the best society, the cleverest conversation and the most divine fun and frivolity. My Janeite friends are my posse, my support and the most beloved community.
    Yours faithfully,
    Sylvia Hom

  • Jan Lewis 18/07/2017 4:52pm (5 days ago)

    200 years (since you departed this world)
    Millions of tears (shed over a brilliance too soon extinguished)
    Immeasurable joy (for those who revere your wit and wisdom)
    Like no other, Jane endures and transcends time.

  • Caitlin Scharf-Way 18/07/2017 4:43pm (5 days ago)

    You have made me believe in love, in friendship, in family. You have given me a welcoming place to escape to when I am feeling lonely, and have created some of the best of times in my life. I wish you knew how much you changed my life and the lives of so many people. You are so loved by the world. Rest in peace, dear Miss Austen. x

  • Carolyne 18/07/2017 3:53pm (5 days ago)

    "What did she say? - Just what she ought, of course. A lady always does." Emma, Vol.III, Ch.XIII

  • John Perry 18/07/2017 3:53pm (5 days ago)

    I had the misfortune of finding Jane Austen when in my 60s. Since then I've tried to make up for lost time. I've always been a compulsive and mostly indiscriminate reader; now I still read many things, but Jane takes up most of my time (a dozen and more readings of P&P; several each of the other five).
    Thank you, thank you, Jane and JASNA!

  • Judee Schumacher Pronovost 18/07/2017 3:44pm (5 days ago)

    Jane, you changed my life in so many ways. I have enjoyed your novels for most of my life. I feel closest to you when I am enjoying and teaching English Country Dance. Long may your books be read and enjoyed by the ages that follow.

  • Valerie Sopher 18/07/2017 3:24pm (5 days ago)

    Three days ago I paid homage to Jane when I visited Chawton. I had the privilege to be in the room where she wrote, look out the same windows and walk where she walked. She gifted generations of readers and will withstand the test of time.

  • E.P. Clark 18/07/2017 3:05pm (5 days ago)

    Whenever things are really tough, it's Austen's works that I turn too. All of life is reflected in them, and all in such exquisite prose that it makes the rest of us writers want to cry with envy. I wish she had had the time to write 16 or 60 novels instead of 6, but I am profoundly grateful every day for the 6 that we have.
    Here's a quote that never fails to make me laugh:
    "You and I will have a nice basin of gruel together. My dear Emma, suppose we all have a little gruel."
    Emma could not suppose any such thing, knowing, as she did, that both the Mr. Knightleys were as unpersuadable on that article as herself, and two basins only were ordered. After a little more discourse in praise of gruel, with some wondering at its not being taken every evening by everybody, he proceeded to say, with an air of grave reflection:
    "It was an awkward business, my dear, your spending the autumn at Southend."

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