Prof David Owen Norris of Southampton University

Lifting the lid on a piano steeped in history

At Chawton House Library sits a rather special piano, on loan from the University of Southampton, our concert series partner. We caught up with the university’s Head of Keyboard Studies, Professor David Owen Norris, to find out more about the ‘angel’ of musical instruments. Continue reading

Christmas 2009 052

Celebrating Christmas at Chawton House Library the Georgian way

Dr Annie Gray, celebrated food historian and a regular on The Great British Bake Off, will be giving talks at Chawton House Library about the “knockout” dinners enjoyed by the Georgians at Christmas. Here Dr Annie Gray explains the allure … Continue reading

mary woll billboard

Science and The Rights of Women

The turbulent life of Mary Wollstonecraft, mother of Mary Shelley, ended when she was only thirty-eight. The anger and zeal that fuelled her creative talents were destructive forces in her personal life. Her writing challenged the accepted conventions of the … Continue reading

Ann Radcliffe The Mysteries of Udolpho (2)

Terror, Tyranny and Mysterious Manuscripts

  A Study Day on Ann Radcliffe at Chawton House Library with Professor Emma Clery and Dr Angela Wright Saturday 8th November, 2 pm to 5 pm     “Fate sits on these dark battlements, and frowns; And as the … Continue reading

Jane Austen at Home - a costumed recital-performance of extracts from the writings of Jane Austen

Jane Austen at Home: a performance that “sparkles with charm and delight”

In the unique setting of Chawton House Library, award-winning actor Emerald O’Hanrahan will take to the stage in a costumed recital-performance that celebrates the variety and wit of Jane Austen’s writings. Jane Austen at Home captures Austen’s intelligence and warm-heartedness … Continue reading


Austen Among the Economists – by Femina Economica

Economists are in trouble. They failed to predict the 2008 Financial Crash. In the aftermath of the crisis, they stand accused not only of failing to explain it, but of failing in their duty to educate the public about the … Continue reading

The Writer's Garden - book by Jackie Bennett

The Writer’s Garden: book review by Nicola Baldwin

I was asked to review Jackie Bennett’s The Writer’s Garden: How Gardens Inspired Our Best Loved Authors by merit of my horticultural background. As a garden designer, I come from the completely biased starting point of totally agreeing with the … Continue reading

The Writer's Garden - book by Jackie Bennett

A new book that celebrates some of Britain’s best-loved writers and their gardens

Garden writer and historian, Jackie Bennett, will be visiting Chawton House Library to talk about her new book, The Writer’s Garden: How Gardens Inspired Our Best-Loved Authors. In this beautifully illustrated book of 18 gardens and 20 writers, the author … Continue reading

The ‘1813 Lydia Bennet Bonnet’

The ‘1814, Maria Rushworth’ bonnet : currently under construction

By Eleanor Houghton.  Eleanor is a current student on the MA in Eighteenth-Century Studies at the University of Southampton. She has worked extensively with the collections at Chawton House Library, and is designing the ‘1814, Maria Bertram/Rushworth bonnet’ for the … Continue reading

Gillian 2014 final

Change and Continuity; Or, of Old Books and New

A Message from Gillian Dow, incoming Executive Director at Chawton House Library As I sit at my desk on the top floor at Chawton House Library, I have the library terrace visible from the window behind me, and a view … Continue reading