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|Additions and one correction.
Written by Linden
(3/3/2003 11:42 p.m.)
in consequence of the missive, MT: Jane Austen and the Wars, Part 1, penned by Captain Everett
It's interesting to compare JA's treatment of soldiers and sailors. The sailors are all out sailoring; even the Marine Mr Price probably would go if anyone would give him the chance. But apart from the militia in P&P, General Tilney and Cols Brandon and Fitzwilliam are just swanning around the country.
] In April of 1790, France declared war on Austria,
Tell me that's a typo, please? It was 1792.
] The United Kingdom at this time was ill prepared for a major conflict.
A quote from Roger Parkinson's biography `Moore of Corunna': (I believe Sir John Moore was one of JA's heroes, but I can't find the reference.)
`Soldiering in the eighteenth century was a heart-breaking profession for any British officer who wished to take it seriously. It was a century filled with wars [list of them omitted]. It is an astonishing and depressing fact that every single one of these occasions found the Army utterly unprepared.'
] In early 1794, disturbing news reached the Austen household. M. de Feullide (the husband of Eliza Hancock, a cousin) had lands in France. Eliza and her son had come to England, while he remained behind to manage, and protect, his estate.
To protect it, he had to stay behind. Lands of emigres were declared forfeit to the nation. It's possible (does anyone know?) that he had emigrated earlier but had returned at the end of 1791-start of 1792 when the decree was passed seizing emigre property.
And one minor snippet: in 1792, Lafayette fled France to the Austrians (who threw him in prison). Among his companions was a certain Monsieur D'Arblay, who was not thrown in prison but arrived in England, where he met and then married Fanny Burney. John Thorpe refers to this as the only thing he knows about Fanny Burney, but there's a more interesting JA connection. The subscription list of `Camilla' which she published soon after her marriage, includes some 1100 names, among them `Miss J. Austen, Steventon': as far as I know, this is the earliest mention of JA outside her family. See the link below
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