Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice Turns 200
“You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you.” - Mr. Darcy
On January 28, 1813, Jane Austen’s publisher Thomas Egerton released her second novel, Pride and Prejudice. Austen finished writing the novel in 1797 under the title First Impressions, but after prospective publishers declined to even see the manuscript, she heavily edited the story over the following 14 years until Egerton bought it for £110 ($172 present-day USD). Today marks the beginning of festivals, conferences and Austen readathons that “Janeites” have planned throughout the year to celebrate the story of Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy’s tumultuous courtship. Two centuries later, Pride and Prejudice remains one of the most-taught and best-loved classics in Western literature.