International Women’s Day: Literary Letters

The partnership of Brontë Parsonage MuseumChawton House and Elizabeth Gaskell’s House are proud to present, “International Women’s Day: Literary Letters.”

Women’s words have often been dismissed as mere ‘gossip’, whilst men’s have been fêted and admired. But women’s letters  can often reveal huge amounts about their writer’s lives and the boundaries that confined them, making them a fascinating portal into their private worlds. Jane Austen, Charlotte Brontë, Elizabeth Gaskell and Mary Somerville are four such extraordinary women, whose lives we can explore through their private words.

The event will be held on March 8 at 7pm – 9pm GMT (2pm – 4pm EST) and is online. Cost is £10.

For more information on the event and to book, visit the event’s webpage here.

Online Talk: A Tale of Two Houses

Jane Austen House, with partnership with Elizabeth Gaskell’s House, is proud to present the first in many upcoming events. In the celebration of literature’s two greatest heroines, Lizzy Bennet from Pride & Prejudice and Margaret Hale from North and South, the first event is the online talk, “A Tale of Two Houses.”

Discover how our heroines each appear to defy convention in these classic novels by Jane Austen and Elizabeth Gaskell. Join Libby Tempest, Chair of the Gaskell Society, and Ellora Sutton, Creative Engagement Officer at Jane Austen’s House, to take a closer look at the comparisons between Lizzy and Margaret as they speak their minds to shape the world around them, and enjoy readings from two blockbuster novels of the nineteenth century.

The event is February 16 starts at 7:00 PM BST (2:00 PM EST) and will last an hour with 45 minutes for the talk and the remaining time for questions. For more information, and to book tickets, vist the event website.

Pride and Prejudice Day on January 28

Jane Austen House has done it again with their yearly Pride and Prejudice day! This year the event will be held from 9AM GMT to 9PM GMT and it will all be online.

The celebratory events include:

  • Virtual Book Club: Pride & Prejudice (1pm GMT/ 8am EST) is a lively lunch-break book club, discussing all things Pride & Prejudice!
  • The Bennet Sisters’ Guide to Jane Austen’s House (4.30pm GMT/ 11:30 am EST) is a fun, family-friendly introduction to Jane Austen’s House, under the expert guidance of the five Bennet girls – Jane, Lizzy, Mary, Kitty and Lydia… What sort of tour guides will they be?!
  • Virtual ‘Pride & Prejudice’ Tour (7pm GMT / 2pm EST) is a very special virtual guided tour of Jane Austen’s House, using the House itself and objects from the collection to reveal the themes, characters and events of Jane Austen’s beloved novel.

Each event costs £5.00 GBP ($7 USD) and will be held over Zoom. All proceeds goes to the museum.

For more information, visit the event page.

‘Six Winters’: Scenes from Jane Austen’s Life & Imagination

Jane Austen Six Winters

Jane Austen’s House and Museum has put together a lovely virtual event entitled: ‘Six Winters’: Scenes from Jane Austen’s Life & Imagination.

Presenting six winter scenes from Austen’s life and her novels, you can enjoy the event online or in-person. Even if Covid were not an issue, not all of us can whisk ourselves to Hampshire which makes this virtual event even more special.

The six scenes are:
Scene 1: Jane Austen’s birth, December 1775
Jane Austen’s Bedroom

Scene 2: Family theatricals, December 1787
Family Room

Scene 3: Dancing with Tom Lefroy, January 1796
Dining Room

Scene 4. First reading of Pride & Prejudice, January 1813
Drawing Room

Scene 5: ‘A fine family piece’, Persuasion
Family Room

Scene 6: ‘You will have much pleasure in being in London’, Sense & Sensibility
Courtyard Gallery

You can click on the above links to jump around the event or you can start here.


Jane Austen Community Quilts

Image of one of the Jane Austen community quilts

Last year, the Jane Austen House Museum ran a collaborative quilting project inspired by the Austen family coverlet currently housed at the museum. The project was funded by Heritage Lottery Fund with partnership by the Jane Austen Hampshire Group, Alton Library, Fine Cell Work, Winchester Discovery Centre, Home-Start WeyWater, and the Alresford Lacemakers.

“Each individual quilt block was designed and created by representatives from over forty community groups worldwide, including groups in North America, Australia and Brazil as well as closer to home with blocks designed by Chawton Primary School and Chawton House. Each block explores a different theme which when combined forms a patchwork of stories narrating Jane Austen’s life. ”

“On Saturday 10th March, Jane Austen’s House Museum hosted a celebration event to showcase the new community story quilt in the Museum’s Learning Centre. Around 80 participants, some travelling from as far afield as Scotland, made the trip to Chawton to view the quilt and share stories and experiences about the project over tea and coffee. Liz Betts, Quilt Designer, and Sue Dell, Collections Volunteer and Austen coverlet expert, were on-hand throughout the day to meet with visitors and participants and answer questions about the project. ”

You can follow along with the story of the quilt by visiting the quilt’s blog.