27 April 2010

Novels Online at Chawton House

Isn’t the internet wonderful? The other night I stumbled upon the website of the Chawton House Library. The physical library is contained in the former home of Edward Austen Knight (Yes, that’s Austen as in Jane).

And the online library has free books!

More seriously, it is, in their words, “an ongoing project making freely accessible full-text transcripts of some of the rarest works in the Chawton House Library collection.” There’s around 50 up already, by anonymous authors and women whose names have been all but lost to literary history. Since I adore classics and the late eighteenth-early nineteenth century, I am very happy and looking forward to loading up Digital Editions with some PDF files.

(Yes, I have an e-book reader on each of my computers. Yes, I have used them. No, the sky hasn’t fallen in. Yet.)

The Library is a wonderful means of bringing some belated recognition to late-Georgian women writers other than Jane Austen and Fanny Burney. Be warned, though, that the texts have not been edited.

But edited or not, who wouldn’t be curious about Errors of Eccentricity?

1 comment:

  1. What a fantastic find! As you say, even though they aren't edited, how can you resist?


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Header image shows detail of A Young Girl Reading by Jean-Honoré Fragonard, c. 1776