Jane Austen

She is known principally for her five major novels which interpret, critique and comment upon the life of the British landed gentry at the end of the 18th century. Her most highly praised novel during her own lifetime was Pride and Prejudice which was her second published novel. Her plots often reflect upon the dependence of women on marriage in the pursuit of favorable social standing and economic security.

Born as the 7th child of eight (she had five brothers and an older sister or a younger brother) in a large and united family, on the edge of the lower English nobility, Jane has lived all her life near her family.

Jane met Tom Lefroy in Hampshire during the Christmas holidays in 1795. In mid-January, he went to London to study law. Jane saw him again in London in August, but no one knew anything about their relationship until the fall of 1798 when it turned out that it had no result. Jane’s only sister burned most of her letters, dated between 18 September 1796 and October 1798. These two years were among the most fruitful of Jane’s life. After returning from London she wrote “Pride and Prejudice”, then rewrote “Elinor and Marianne” under the title of “Sense and Sensibility” and finally she started to write“Northanger Monastery”, which she completed in 1799. She has not written a novel in over a decade.

The stable support of her family has been instrumental in Austen’s development as a professional writer. The period in which Jane has developed artistic abilities began in adolescence and lasted until the age of 35 years old. During this period, she wrote three important novels and she started on the fourth. From 1811 until 1815 through the apparition of the novels “Sense and Sensibility” (1811), “Pride and Prejudice” (1813), “Mansfield Park” (1814) and “Emma” (1815), she already became successful as a writer. She also wrote two other novels, “The Northanger Monastery” (written between 1798-1799 and revised later) and “Persuasion”, both published after her death in 1817, and began a third, called possibly “Sanditon”, but she died before its completion.

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