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Jane Austen and Tom Lefroy: the invented love of the "first lady" of English literature
Jane Austen and Tom Lefroy: the invented love of the "first lady" of English literature
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Jane Austen and Tom Lefroy

Jane Austen is a British writer who gave the world the most beautiful love stories - she herself never knew the delights of romantic relationships and family happiness. Until the end of her life, she remained faithful to one person to whom she gave her heart when she saw it once.

Jane Austen

Jane Austen

English writer Jane Austen was born in 1775 to a parish priest from the village of Steventon in Hampshire and was the fifth child in the family. The father of the family had to earn money as a teacher in a local boarding school due to the small income from the parish. Little Jane's childhood was spent among her father's students, so she got used to jokes and noise from boyish fuss. Having barely reached the 18th birthday, Jane already shone with might and main at the balls, which gave great pleasure to her mother, who hoped for a profitable marriage for her daughter. Mrs. Austin was sure that if not at this ball, then at the next, her daughter would receive a marriage proposal. But everything turned out differently …

Meeting at the ball

This ball turned Jane's life upside down and influenced her entire future life. She met him, Tom Lefroy, a handsome descendant from a poor Irish family. Tom was a student and studied law in London, relying only on himself and on the generosity of his uncle, who paid for his nephew's studies. Arriving to visit his family, to take a break from studies, the young man got to the ball where he first met Jane Austen.

Tom Lefroy is Jane Austen's fictional love

This evening for the windy Tom meant nothing, but gave the impressionable Jane love for life. After Lefroy left for London, a girl in love, climbing into bed in the evenings. I didn’t read any more books, but took out my manuscript "First Impressions" and read it to my sister. The whole world was for her in only Tom, she was only waiting for him.

Jane Austen Museum in Hampshire

Over time, Jane began to understand that Tom would not return, there was not a single note from him for all the time. After graduating and becoming a lawyer, he returned to Ireland, where he married the rich sister of a friend from the university. Jane had two finished novels, Sense and Sensibility and First Impressions, when news of Lefroy's wedding reached her. Sinking down on a chair, she felt how the soul from this unbearable pain was ready to break out, like her heart, stopping, then making a leap, began to pound madly. From that moment on, she gave herself only to creativity.

Jane Austen and creativity

Jane Austen, the "first lady" of English literature

In the first five years, the world saw and read four novels, which were recognized as the best, which not only brought fame to the writer, but also material independence. As an independent woman, Jane remained single. rejecting all offers of a hand and heart, which at that time was incomprehensible to others. In 1800, Mr. Austin was going to go to Bath, where he was going to live the rest of his years, and Jane was to accompany him. Not daring to resist her father, she asked permission to visit Maindown, the house where she met Tom, but this trip turned out to be another test in her life.

Chance for happiness

Harris Bigg, the only son of the wealthy Manedown owner, was desperately in love with Jane, although he was five years younger. He dared to ask for her hand in marriage and received, surprisingly, the warmest approval from his father. He loved Jane like his own daughter. Marriage would give her the opportunity to return to her native place and live under the protection of a loving husband. And she said yes. The bride was only 1 day.

View of Bath from Cleverton Road by John Claude Nets

Jane Austen visited Bath in 1797 and 1799 and made it the setting for several episodes of her early novel, Northanger Abbey. She could not throw Tom Lefroy out of her thoughts, seven years did not help her to forget him. She found the strength to explain herself to her failed future husband, and then cried all night, realizing that she had given up real happiness, from her family, from the future for the sake of illusions and life in the past.

Judge Thomas Langlois Lefroy

In her new novel "Mansfield Park", she described the experiences of a woman who refuses a prosperous life for the sake of hopeless love in her heart. Retelling in essence his life in this novel. Feeling unwell has become Jane's companion in recent years, weakness, dizziness, fainting.

Still from the film "Jane Austen"

Feeling that she had little left, she worked harder and harder, spending hours at her favorite bureau. In late 1813, Jane danced at her last ball. The writer died in 1817 in the city of Winchester, where she was buried in the city cathedral. The woman who gave the world beautiful love stories, who herself loved only one man very much in her life, whose love remained unrequited.

And one more story of unfulfilled love - the story of the great storyteller Andersen and his snow queen Jenny Lind.

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