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

Ruth Sillers

War Girls: telling women’s stories of the First World War

Actress Ruth Sillers will be visiting Chawton House Library to talk about and perform extracts from War Girls, her own audio book that commemorates women’s unsung experiences from the First World War. Mixing poetry and prose by ordinary women alongside … Continue reading

Jane Austen's Country Life jkt

Jane Austen’s Country Life: book review by Mary Besada

How was Mother’s Day celebrated in Jane Austen’s village? What makes Mr Darcy such an exemplary landlord? How does Mr Knightley show his concern for his tenants? And, in what manner exactly are the farmers’ carts employed that not a … Continue reading

Deidre Le Faye

Deirdre Le Faye to visit Chawton House Library in June

Deirdre Le Faye will be visiting Chawton House Library on 6 June to talk about her latest book, Jane Austen’s Country Life. This richly illustrated book explores and evokes country life in Jane Austen‘s day, offering new perspectives on her … Continue reading

Vivian Montgomery, Southampton's visiting Fulbright Senior Scholar

Chawton House Library: the muse in music-making

There’s something about Chawton House Library that gets under people’s skin. Whether it’s the Elizabethan manor once owned by Jane Austen’s brother, Edward Austen Knight, the beautiful gardens and parkland within the South Downs National Park or the rare collection … Continue reading

Steve Lawrence

Chief executive Steve Lawrence bids farewell to Chawton

After six-and-a-half years, Chief executive Steve Lawrence bids farewell to Chawton. Continue reading

Bookplate2

Why I have joined the 1817 Legacy Circle

As a reader (both as a scholar and as a fan) and lover of Jane Austen’s works, I   became a fan and lover of Chawton House Library. And this is why I have included Chawton House Library in my estate … Continue reading

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