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Pride and Prejudice (The Peacock Edition, Revived)

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Our copy of the first edition, published in three volumes, is a rare example of the book surviving in the original simple binding known as 'publishers' boards'. It is in near-perfect condition. This edition is part of our Hugh Sharp collection. The first illustrated edition Published in 1923 as part of his edition of all Austen's novels, it ensured that scholars in the relatively new discipline of English Literature took the novels seriously as literary texts. Film and television tie-ins On show are books related to the novel which have been published in the past 10 years and have joined our collections thanks to legal deposit. First fully illustrated edition, one of 250 large paper copies 'printed for England and 25 copies for America'; 4to (230 x 175 mm); with the illustrations specially printed on China paper and laid down, very faint mark to base of frontispiece, otherwise internally near-fine, later half green morocco, over corresponding cloth, marbled endpapers and edges, fading to spine and mild age-toning, otherwise, near-fine. The first edition of this title to include illustrations with the text since Bentley's edition (first published in 1833) only contained an illustrated frontispiece. Hugh Thomson (1860-1920) renowned illustrator, in pen and ink, of classic titles; he was born in Ireland where his skills as an illustrator were recognised while still a teenager. Consequently Thomson was trained by John Vinycomb, the head designer at Marcus Ward & Co., a prominent Belfast publishing house. He subsequently moved to England, working from 1883 for MacMillan & Co., illustrating all six of Jane Austen's novels and other literary classics. By 1900 he had become one of the most popular illustrators of his time. However, during the First World War there was less demand for his style of work and he took a job with the Board of Trade until his untimely death from heart disease. Jane Austen's original manuscript for 'Pride and Prejudice' has not survived. This first edition of the book is therefore of special importance in the history of the text.

To some, the novel's concentration on finding one's ideal partner is frivolous and escapist. Even Austen herself wrote in a letter that 'The work is rather too light & bright & sparkling; — it wants shade'. Our display includes editions published to tie in with film and television adaptations, as we show how those dramatisations influence the way the novel is read.Richard Bentley's edition published in 1833 established 'Pride and Prejudice' as part of the literary canon. Pride and Prejudice' was first published in 1813. A romantic comedy, it tells the story of Elizabeth Bennet, the witty heroine, and Mr Darcy, the rich, handsome hero. Description: A collection of 35 illustrations by Hugh Thomson, made up of three original pen and ink drawings and 32 printers test proof plate prints, made for for George Allen’s 1894 edition of Pride and Prejudice. They are signed by the artist and dated ’94 (1894).

Some very unacademic material in our collections allows us to see how people respond to 'Pride and Prejudice' today. Exhibits range from self-published fan fiction to the bestselling 'Pride and Prejudice and zombies', where Elizabeth Bennet is transformed into an expert warrior slaying the undead.

The Significance of Pride and Prejudice

Starting with the 1940 film version, these editions range through 1990s 'Darcymania' to the 2005 film starring Keira Knightley and Matthew Macfadyen. Modern sequels, retellings — and zombies

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