A beautifully illustrated account of the letters and correspondence of Jane Austen. This handsome celebration of Austen's letters is illustrated with portraits, facsimile letters, topographical engravings and fashion plates, all helping to bring to life the world Jane Austen inhabited. The letters, with an accompanying commentary by Penelope Hughes-Hallett, are separated into six periods of Jane Austen's life, between the years 1796, when she was twenty, and 1817, the year of her death. They celebrate Jane Austen's talent for expressing exactly what she perceived, making this an illuminating companion to her novels. Although the book follows a broadly chronological scheme, the letters are arranged round visual themes, including the Hampshire countryside, social life in Bath and London, domestic pursuits, paying visits and travelling by carriage.