Many of you may know that this year is the 200th anniversary of the publication of Pride and Prejudice. Austen wrote the novel in 1797-98, originally calling it First Impressions. Her father attempted to have it published, but the manuscript was rejected. It was not until her first novel, Sense and Sensibility was published in 1812 that Pride and Prejudice was accepted. By that time, another author had published their novel called First Impressions. Austen found another title for her book from a quote in fellow female author Fanny Burney’s novel, Cecila. Thus Pride and Prejudice was born. The novel was an instant success and has proved to be her most popular novel.
While we know much about her life from records and her own letters, there are aspects of her life of which we know nothing because her sister destroyed letters after the author’s death in 1817 in order to protect family privacy. Scholars and authors can only speculate what the subjects of those letters were and what dimensions they could have added to our understanding of Jane Austen.
By Jane Austen:
Based on Jane Austen: