Author Archives: Eliza Shearer

The Mechanical Turk, or the Chess-Playing Machine that Beat Napoleon, by Eliza Shearer

The Mechanical Turk, or the Chess-Playing Machine that Beat Napoleon, by Eliza Shearer

It was the year 1809. The Napoleonic Wars were in full swing, but the French general had other interests besides fighting the British over Spain and Portugal.  Around the time Jane Austen and her mother and sister moved to Chawton and took possession of their new home, courtesy of Jane’s brother Edward, Napoleon arrived in… Read the full blog post …

Charlotte of Wales, a Regency Princess – and Jane Austen Fan, by Eliza Shearer

Charlotte of Wales, a Regency Princess – and Jane Austen Fan, by Eliza Shearer

I am lucky enough to live a short drive from Holyrood Palace, the official residence of Queen Elizabeth II in Edinburgh, Scotland.  The palace includes the Queen’s Gallery, which features an ever-changing array of exhibitions from the Royal Collection that never fail to inspire me (an exhibition of Maria Merian’s drawings inspired a key scenes… Read the full blog post …

The Unfortunate Choices in the Jane Austen Ten Pound Note, by Eliza Shearer

The Unfortunate Choices in the Jane Austen Ten Pound Note, by Eliza Shearer

On 14 September 2017, a £10 banknote featuring Jane Austen entered circulation.  The launch coincided with the 200th anniversary of the death of the writer, who passed away prematurely on 18 July 1817. It’s a recognition conveyed to very few individuals (and a tiny number of women). All in all, an incredible honour. Janeites celebrated… Read the full blog post …

Windows in Jane Austen, by Eliza Shearer

Windows in Jane Austen, by Eliza Shearer

We, Janeites, know that windows are a thing in Jane Austen’s novels. One of Mr Collins’ most memorable scenes in Pride and Prejudice takes place when he and his wife are on the way to visit the formidable Lady Catherine de Bourgh alongside their visitor, Miss Elizabeth Bennet. This is what happens as they approach Rosings:… Read the full blog post …