Hampshire Record Office is marking Jane Austen's bicentenary with a special evening event on 19 July.
Professor Emma Clery, from the University of Southampton, will deliver a talk entitled 'Jane Austen's banker brother and financial scandal in Regency England.' Henry Austen, Jane’s banker brother, had set up as a banker in 1804, and built up a small empire of country banks. However, he spectacularly went bust in the crash of 1816, the year before Jane died. A fascinating figure in his own right, highly revealing of the corruption and decadence as well as the inequality and the desperation that characterised the Regency period, Henry was intimately connected to the centres of power in high society. The history of his rise and fall, moreover, consistently informed Jane s publishing career and imaginative life as a novelist. Professor Emma Clery will discuss her new research and revelations based on documents located at Hampshire Record Office.
A showcase of original and unique documents concerning Jane, her family and the period will be on display. These will include Jane's baptism entry (pictured), letters written by Jane, music books which she annotated and a diary recording the moment of Jane’s death and documents about the changing life of Henry Austen, amid much more.
Live regency music from the Madding Crowd music group will accompany the event alongside canapés and drinks.
Advance booking is required. Phone 01962 846154 to book today.