Jane and Dorothy: A True Tale of Sense and Sensibility:The Lives of Jane Austen and Dorothy Wordsworth

Jane and Dorothy: A True Tale of Sense and Sensibility:The Lives of Jane Austen and Dorothy Wordsworth

by Marian Veevers


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An intimate portrait of Jane Austen, Dorothy Wordsworth, and their world—two women torn between revolutionary ideas and fierce conservatism, artistic creativity and emotional upheavals.

Jane Austen and Dorothy Wordsworth were born just four years apart, in a world torn between heady revolutionary ideas and fierce conservatism, but their lives have never been examined together before. They both lived in Georgian England, navigated strict social conventions and new ideals, and they were both influenced by Dorothy’s brother, the Romantic poet William Wordsworth, and his coterie. They were both supremely talented writers yet often lacked the necessary peace of mind in their search for self-expression. Neither ever married.

Jane and Dorothyuses each life to illuminate the other. For both women, financial security was paramount and whereas Jane Austen hoped to achieve this through her writing, rather than being dependent on her family, Dorothy made the opposite choice and put her creative powers to the use of her brilliant brother, with whom she lived all her adult life.

Though neither path would bring lasting fulfillment and independence, both women’s mark on literary culture is undeniable.In this probing book, Marian Veevers discovers a crucial missing piece to the puzzle of Dorothy and William’s relationship and addresses enduring myths surrounding the one man who seems to have stolen Jane’s heart, only to break it . . .

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781681776781
Publisher: Pegasus Books
Publication date: 04/03/2018
Pages: 336
Sales rank: 743,652
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.10(h) x 1.60(d)

About the Author

Marian Veevers

lives in the Lake District, just five miles from
Grasmere, and works for the Wordsworth Trust. She lectures on
Dorothy Wordsworth and is the author of several novels set in Georgian
England under the pseudonym Anna Dean, including Bellfield
Hall and A Gentleman of Fortune.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgements ix

Prologue: The Inward Secrets of our Hearts xi

Part 1

1 Gentlemen's Daughters 1

2 Little Prattlers among Men 10

3 Original Sin 21

4 Fashionably Educated and Left Without a Fortune 26

Part 2

5 Love and Friendship 43

6 Ladies of the Rectory 54

7 A Happy Command of Language 65

8 Considering the Future 73

9 Falling in Love 82

10 Betrayal 93

11 Journeys, Brothers, Freedom and Confinement 111

12 A House of My Own 123

Part 3

13 An Experiment in Liberty 135

14 My Own Darling Child 142

15 A Small Revolution 157

16 Poetry and Prose 171

17 A Maid Whom There Were None to Praise 182

18 Homecoming and Exile 194

19 Exercised to Constraint 209

20 Our Affections do Rebel 218

21 Very Capable of Loving 233

22 Marriage: The Settlement we should aim at 240

Part 4

23 Writing and Publication 255

24 My Father Cannot Provide for Us 271

25 Another Exile, Another Homecoming 280

Part 5

26 Beyond 1809 297

Epilogue: A Natural Sequel to an Unnatural Beginning? 321

Appendix 1 Stanzas from The Minstrel 325

Appendix 2 The Forest - Epode 327

Appendix 3 Among All Lovely Things My Love Had Been 331

Notes and References 333

Bibliography 367

Index 371

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