Jane Austen

Jane Austen
Birth and death
1775 - 1817
Profession details
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Alistair Grant

Jane Austen (1775-1817), novelist. In Chapter 4 of 'A Memoir of Jane Austen' by her nephew J.E. Austen-Leigh (2nd Edition, 1871) he quotes a letter written by Jane Austen (Sloane Street, Thursday 20th May 1813), which he prefaces: "The following letter... describes a journey from Chawton to London, in her brother's curricle, and shows how much could be seen and enjoyed in course of a long summer's day by leisurely travelling amongst scenery which the traveller in an express train now rushes through in little more than an hour, but scarcely sees at all:" Jane Austen writes: "We left Guildford at 20 minutes before 12 (I hope somebody cares for these minutiae), and were at Esher in about 2 hours more. I was very much pleased with the country in general. Between Guildford and Ripley I thought it particularly pretty, also about Painshill; and from a Mr Spicer's grounds at Esher, which we walked into before dinner, the views were beautiful. I cannot say what we did not see, but I should think there could not be a wood, or a meadow, or palace, or remarkable spot in England that was not spread out before us on one side or other. Claremont is going to be sold: a Mr Ellis has it now. It is a house that seems never to have prospered. After dinner we walked forward to be overtaken at the coachman's time, and before he did overtake us we were very near Kingston."

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