A blog dedicated to providing quotes by and posts relating to one of the most influential (and quotable!) authors of the twentieth century, G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936). If you do not know much about GKC, I suggest visiting the webpage of the American Chesterton Society as well as this wonderful Chesterton Facebook Page by a fellow Chestertonian

I also have created a list detailing examples of the influence of Chesterton if you are interested, that I work on from time to time.

(Moreover, for a list of short GKC quotes, I have created one here, citing the sources)

"...Stevenson had found that the secret of life lies in laughter and humility."

-Heretics (1905)

Finally, not directly Chesterton related, but I highly recommend the following websites

M.G.D.'s website is where you can learn the latest concerning the Marcus series of novels, as well as other great writing!

Mardi Robyn, run by my great friend Mardi, is an excellent site for handmade jewelry and accessories that you'll love! Also make sure to visit Rockin' Robyn Boutique

Please make sure to visit those sites! (And remember, it is very Chestertonian to support small businesses!)

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Jane Austen and GKC

Admittedly, I am not exactly someone who has read a lot of Jane Austen, to put it mildly (a shock, I know. lol. :-). But I have some friends who love her writings, and so I was curious to see if I could find any connection between her and GKC. I discovered that indeed there was.

Apparently, a collection of childhood compositions Jane Austen had written, and which had been handed down in her family, ended up being turned over for publication by Austen's great-niece, and published for the very first time in 1922. It's title page read:

Love & freindship and other early works, now first printed from the original MS by Jane Austen with a preface by G.K. Chesterton
So, as you can see, the very first edition of this work by Jane Austen appeared to the world with a preface by GKC. (Obviously, it was published posthumously- indeed, about a hundred years after her death, but, hey- it is still true that GKC wrote the preface to the first edition of a previously unpublished work written by Jane Austen.)

As Chesterton himself explains in the preface, giving the history of the work:
Jane Austen left everything she possessed to her sister Cassandra, including these and other manuscripts; and the second volume of them containing these was left by Cassandra to her brother, Admiral Sir Francis Austen. He gave it to his daughter Fanny, who left it in turn to her brother Edward, who was the Rector of Barfrestone in Kent, and the father of Mrs Sanders, to whose wise decision we owe the publication of these first fancies of her great-aunt; whom it might be misleading here to call her great great-aunt. Everyone will judge for himself; but I myself think she has added something intrinsically important to literature and to literary history; and that there are cartloads of printed matter, regularly recognised and printed with the works of all great authors, which are far less characteristic and far less significant than these few nursery jests.

Moreover, here's a little more information from the
Critical Companion to Jane Austen: A Literary Reference to Her Life and Work by William Baker (2008)

Love and friendship
(LF) is the second of the three notebooks in Jane Austen's handwriting into which she copied her childhood compositions. The dating 1790-92, that is, when she was between 15 and 17 years of age, appears in the notebook. Following the author's death, the manuscript went to her sister, CASSANDRA, and remained in family hands. On July 6, 1977, it was sold at Sotheby's auction house in London and then purchased by the British Library.

Entitled "Love and Freindship. A novel in a series of Letters," with the inscription "Deceived in Freindship & Betrayed in Love," and completed on June 13, 1790, the work was dedicated to ELIZA DE FEULLIDE, Jane Austen's cousin. The spelling "Frendship" has been retained, as this was the author's own childhood spelling; however, she subsequently corrected this to "Friendship."

The 15 letters constituting LF were first published in 1922 in an edition containing a preface by the distinguished British man of letters G.K. Chesterton (1874-1936)
(emphasis mine)
And, just in case you wish to read it, including Chesterton's preface, you can do so here:

Love and Freindship and other Early Works


Alyssa said...

Wow, cool! I didn't know this. Thanks for sharing! :))

Mike said...

You're welcome. :-)

♫♪♫ Mardi said...

That is neat!! I actually have that Jane Austen book downloaded to my kindle but I haven't read it yet! :)

Mike said...

Mardi: Let me know how it is like. :-)