12-14 April 2019

Jane Austen Festival Australia is an annual celebration in Canberra where Austen and Napoleonic fans from all over Australia come and indulge themselves in everything Regency - including dancing, music, food, games, archery, fencing, theatre, promenades, grand balls, talks, workshops, costumes and books. This festival is now a regular part of the ACT Heritage Festival, Australian Heritage Week and is supported by the ACT Government, the Australian Costumers Guild and the Earthly Delights Historic Dance Academy. Since its inception in 2008 this little festival has blossomed into one of the most delightful four days anyone could experience each April in an old and beautiful part of Canberra, the Federal capital of Australia.

May 14, 2015

JAFA-NEWS, May 2015

A confirmed date for JAFA 2016
The next Jane Austen Festival Australia will be held from 15-17 April 2016 at the Albert Hall in Canberra. In addition, we are planning a day of Regency-themed sewing workshops on Thursday 14 April at a nearby venue.

JAFA 2015 - Photos
JAFA photos now available for viewing. Steven has organised the images into a number of albums which may be viewed by clicking on the following url: http://www.ausact.com/jafa.html

May - Mansfield Park
was written between February, 1811 and the summer of 1813. It was the third novel Jane Austen had published and it first appeared on May 4, 1814. It is Jane Austen's most complex novel and deals with many different themes, from the education of children, to the differences between appearances and reality. 

1815 - New words appeared in our vocabulary
Drat - thinly disguised "God Rot"
Coddle - To treat tenderly- first in print in Emma in 1815

What happened 200 years ago?
Two main events of 1816 are of interest to us as we organise talks, workshops and dances: "Emma" was released for sale in early 1816 and Thomas Wilson published his books on Waltzing. Other events of interest:
  • Lord Byron completed "Parisina" & "Siege of Corinth"
  • Charlotte Bronte (d.1855), English novelist, writer of “Vilette” and “Jane Eyre,” was born in Thornton, England
  • George “Beau” Brummell leaves England in May 1816 to escape his creditors, never to return.
  • In the wake of rumors of marital violence, sodomy, incest, and adultery, Lord Byron leaves England in May, never to return.
  • Cold weather persists throughout the summer of 1816 in much of the world’s temperate zones creating the “year without a summer,” especially in North Amerca. The unusual climate is likely due to a major volcanic eruption in Indonesia, and inspired Lord Byron’s poem “Darkness.”
  • Lord Byron and guests gathered at the Villa Diodati on Lake Geneva, Switzerland. It was here that Byron challenged his guests to write a ghost story. This led Mary Shelley to produce Frankenstein in 1818 and John Polidori to create his short story “The Vampyre” (1819).
  • The governor of New South Wales, Lachian Macquarie, grants to Elizabeth Macarthur and her husband John, 600 acres near Camden as recognition of her work toward improvement of agriculture in the Australian colony.

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