Remembering Jane Austen
It is interesting that the memorial originally placed in Winchester Cathedral makes no mention of her writing …
The benevolence of her heart, the sweetness of her temper, and the extraordinary endowments of her mind obtained the regard of all who knew her, and the warmest love of her intimate connections. Their grief is in proportion to their affection they know their loss to be irreparable, but in their deepest affliction they are consoled by a firm but humble hope that her charity, devotion, faith and purity, have rendered her soul acceptable in the sight of her redeemer.
… and fifty five years were to pass before a second tablet was added which included the words …
To Jane Austen known to many by her writings.
The inscription concludes with a quotation from the book of Proverbs …
She openeth her mouth with wisdom; and in her tongue is the law of kindness.
Here are the words of Jane Austen’s own prayer …
“May we now, and on each return of night, consider how the last day has been spent by us, what have been our prevailing thoughts, words and actions during it, and how far we can acquit ourselves of evil.” (Memoir Works … ed . Chapman and Southam, Oxford University Press 1972 … Page 453)
… and Jane Austen did write some light verse … below is a poem obtained via this link …
Oh! Mr. Best, you’re very bad
Oh! Mr. Best, you’re very bad
And all the world shall know it;
Your base behaviour shall be sung
By me, a tunefull Poet.—
You used to go to Harrowgate
Each summer as it came,
And why I pray should you refuse
To go this year the same?—
The way’s as plain, the road’s as smooth,
The Posting not increased;
You’re scarcely stouter than you were,
Not younger Sir at least.—
If e’er the waters were of use
Why now their use forego?
You may not live another year,
All’s mortal here below.—
It is your duty Mr Best
To give your health repair.
Vain else your Richard’s pills will be,
And vain your Consort’s care.
But yet a nobler Duty calls
You now towards the North.
Arise ennobled—as Escort
Of Martha Lloyd stand forth.
She wants your aid—she honours you
With a distinguished call.
Stand forth to be the friend of her
Who is the friend of all.—
Take her, and wonder at your luck,
In having such a Trust.
Her converse sensible and sweet
Will banish heat and dust.—
So short she’ll make the journey seem
You’ll bid the Chaise stand still.
T’will be like driving at full speed
From Newb’ry to Speen hill.—
Convey her safe to Morton’s wife
And I’ll forget the past,
And write some verses in your praise
As finely and as fast.
But if you still refuse to go
I’ll never let your rest,
Buy haunt you with reproachful song
Oh! wicked Mr. Best!—
An internal conversational poem by a woman concerning the movement of a man according to the lady-situation in that part of the country … Mr Best being not bad at all but just following his fancy filled freedom of his youth in searching for a suitable playmate … what do you think?
The Jane Austen the film ‘Becoming Jane’ … a 3 star rating … has a factual base but the fabric is its own creation. Apparently Jane was interested in another gentleman, besides Mr Lefroy, while at the coast on holiday. This fellow died mysteriously. Jane could have written ‘Persuasion’ based on this contact … a link to this film