Hi friends! I’m always so happy when authors come and pay a visit to Austenesque Reviews, especially when they are new authors! 🙂 Today I am very happy to have author Eliza Shearer as my guest! Her new Pride and Prejudice sequel Miss Darcy’s Beaux was just released recently and I am so excited to read it because it is a continuation for Pride and Prejudice, Persuasion, and Mansfield Park! Plus I really like it when Miss Darcy has a little excitement with her romantic life and given the title it sounds like she has more than one suitor at least! 😉 We hope you enjoy Eliza’s post about heiresses in Jane Austen!
Show Me The Money: Jane Austen’s Female Characters and Their Settlements
The Regency was a time of dramatic socio-economic changes, and Jane Austen’s novels reflect their historical context through the ups and downs of their characters. Her books are full of details that show this upheaval, and she certainly doesn’t shy away from discussing money. References to wealth or a lack thereof are constant in her novels, and in many cases, we know a lot about the fortunes of those who pepper her pages.
An excellent example of Austen’s attention to what is happening around her is Anne Elliot from Persuasion. The Elliots are a textbook case of an old family in financial difficulties relative to their usual standard of living; although Anne and her sisters are the daughters of a baronet, their settlements are just £3,000. At the other end of the spectrum, we have the Misses Bingley from Pride and Prejudice. Their family has amassed a large fortune through trade, enough to provide each girl with a very generous dowry of £20,000.