Our Celebrations on the 28th January: the 200th Anniversary of the First Publication of “Pride and Prejudice”.
The Museum, once Jane Austen’s home and the place where she revised First Impressions into her most famous novel, Pride and Prejudice, was THE place to be on Monday 28th January, the day we began our year-long celebrations of the 200th anniversary of the first publication of Jane Austen’s most popular novel.
The day began very early for Louise, our Curator and Ann, our House Manager who were on site from 4 a.m. to help with the preparations and to welcome the team from BBC News who were with us all day, presenting live links to BBC Breakfast and News programmes.Our local radio station, Radio Solent was also with us and they broadcast from the Museum throughout the afternoon.
All day the Museum positively buzzed with happy activity; “Jane Austen” took delivery of her Own darling child…
Music was played…
and many visitors who came to share the day with us. Amongst them local school children in Regency dress,
Professor John Mullan and the actress, Jemima Rooper of the television series, Lost in Austen,
the novelist Joanna Trollope,
and Professor Kathryn Sutherland, a member of the Jane Austen Memorial Trust,(third from the right) together with many members of staff and volunteers.
Louise and the staff coped magnificently, and Louise was seen giving many interviews both inside
and outside the house (!)
As no celebration is complete without a cake (whatever Mr. Woodhouse might think!) we were lucky to have a very beautiful confection. It was kindly provided by Squires of Farnham. It very carefully recreated the frontispiece of the Museum’s copy of the first edition of Pride and Prejudice, which was once owned by Jane Austen’s brother, Edward and is now part of the Museum’s collection.
Not only was it technically brilliant, it tasted wonderful, too.
Our special day was exhilarating, and we hope that you can, by looking at the photographs, both here and below in the gallery, share some of the atmosphere and joy. Photographic Credits: Joe Low and Martin Dell