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Paperback; 104 pages; 23 line drawings; 4 maps
In this novel approach to Jane Austen's personal experience and artistic usage of Bath, Maggie Lane, an acknowledged expert on Austen, investigates the rich diversity of scene and occupation which made the city so powerful an influence on the novelist's imagination. Focusing on such aspects of the late Georgian city as 'Taking the Waters', 'Shopping', 'Public Entertainment', 'Walks and Drives', she amplifies quotations from the letters and novels with background information which would have been familiar to contemporary readers. The result is a lively and well-researched study which evokes the city at the height of its popularity, and which is sure to add to modern readers' understanding and enjoyment of Jane Austen's works, particularly Northanger Abbey and Persuasion.
Paperback; 96 pages; 15 b/w photos; 1 map
Fanny Burney spent three extended periods in Bath, coming first in 1767 and spending three years there from 1815. In between she had become a famous and successful novelist. Thus her experience of Bath coincided with Jane Austen's, but unlike Austen, Fanny Burney obviously enjoyed the city greatly. The half-century encompassed by Fanny's visits witnessed not only social change but astonishing physical expansion for Bath, unprecedented anywhere else in the country. Fanny's journal entries include not only passages of great intimacy, making us feel what it was like to be in Bath at that time, but also either forward-looking or retrospective reflections. Though often censorious about the people who frequented, she never returned to the city without expressing spontaneous praise for its beauties, both architectural and natural.