An exhibition named Jane Austen by the Sea will be placed in the Royal Pavilion to mark the bicentenary of the author’s death.
The summer display will explore her relationship with Brighton and other coastal towns, exploring life in fashionable ‘watering places’ of her time.
Austen was a 19th century English novelist of romantic fiction. She was born in the village of Steventon, Hampshire in 1775 and died in 1817 of Addison’s disease. She is famous for her novels Sense and Sensibility and Emma. Her most well known book was Pride and Prejudice in which Brighton featured.
There is a seaside context in many of her plots and the exhibition will highlight Brighton in the early 1800s. It will follow the themes of seaside fashion, love, marriage, places and past times, as well as soldiers and sailors.
The Prince Regent was building the Royal Pavilion as his seaside pleasure palace and was a fan of Austen’s work. His personal copy of the novel she dedicated to him, ‘Emma’, will be included in the display.
Also being shown will be a ‘mourning brooch’, containing a lock of Austen’s hair, one of her music books and important rare manuscripts and letters. Alongside, original Regency costumes and a letter from Jane to the Prince Regents librarian.
The exhibition will be displayed in the Prince Regent’s Gallery in the Royal Pavilion from 17 Jun 2017 – 8 Jan 2018.