16 dec 1775
Jane Austen, an English novelist known for her talent in romance and comedy genre, was born on 16 Dec, 1775 in Hampshire, UK. Most people do not know the existence of such an author until 20th century. Jane’s family was a big one with Jane being the seventh of eight children, to her parents Rev. George Austen and Cassandra.
Jane was very close and friendly to her sister Cassandra. Jane and Cassandra had schooling for some time. Although Jane’s father earned pretty normal, he was unable to fund their education due to their family size. Jane acquired knowledge from her father and her brother. She used to educate herself by reading many books.
Jane’s interest in writing started at home. Her family supported her to become a professional writer. As a child, Jane wrote many short stories only to entertain her family. Her work ‘Lady Susan’ was considered to be her first mature work which the family published late after Jane’s death.
Jane’s world was her family. She didn’t get to know much about the critics. Jane became a published writer after the release of her books ‘Sense & Sensibility’ and ‘Pride & Prejudice’. Since Jane always dreamed of love and marriage, her works had the best of romance.
After her father’s death, Jane lived with her mother and sister in Chawton with her brother’s support. She did not write for nine years. But somehow she was able to pull the string again and wrote the novels ‘Mansfield Park’, ‘Emma’ and ‘Persuasion’. Two of her novels ‘Northanger Abbey’ and ‘Persuasion’ got published only after Jane’s death. Jane died due to sudden illness on 18 Jul, 1817 keeping her novel ‘Sanditon’ on midway.
Jane Austen was known to the world only after the book ‘A Memoir of Jane Austen’ written by her nephew got published in 1869. Admired by her work many novelists wrote sequels to ‘Pride and Prejudice’ and some even completed her unfinished novel ‘Sanditon’. Many of Jane’s novels were made into films. It is really sad that Jane never received any appreciation outside her family when she was alive.