Poems in Praise of Sense and Sensibility

When Sense and Sensibility was published in 1811, many of Jane Austen's own family were surprised at the authorship. Jane Austen's nephew, James Austen-Leigh, was delighted with his aunt's work and penned these two poems in praise of it. James would later To Miss Jane Austen the reputed Author of Sense and Sensibility a Novel lately publish'd By James Austen On such Subjects no Wonder that she shou'd write well, In whom so united those Qualities dwell; Where 'dear Sensibility', Serne's darling Maid, With Sense so attemper'd is finely pourtray'd Fair Elinor's Self in that Mind is exprest, And the Feelings of Marianne live in that Breast. Oh then, gentle Lady! continue to write, And the Sense of your Readers t'amuse & delight. A Friend. To Miss J. Austen by James Edward Austen-Leigh No words can express, my dear Aunt, my suprise Or make you conceive how I opened my eyes, Like a pig Butcher Pile has just struck with his knife, When I heard for the first time in my life That I had the honour to have a relation Whose works were dispersed through the whole of the nation. I assure you, however, I'm terribly glad; Oh dear! just to think (and the thought drives me mad) That dear Mrs Jennings's good-natured strain Was really the produce of your witty brain, That you made the Middletons, Dashwoods, and all, And that you (not young Ferrars) found out that a ball May be given in cottages, never so small. And that though Mr. Collins, so grateful for all, Will Lady de Bourgh his dear Patroness call, 'Tis to your ingenuity really he owed His living, his wife, his humble abode. Now if you will take your poor nephew's advice, Your works to Sir William pray send in a trice, If he'll undertake to some grandees to show it, By whose means at last the Prince Regent might know it, For I'm sure if he did, in reward for your tale, He'd make you a countess at least, without fail, And indeed if the Princess should lose her dear life You might have a good chance of becoming his wife.   Enjoyed this article? Browse our book shop at janeaustengiftshop.co.uk

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