Home Resources Livejournal Feed Wordpress

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Second Edition Life of C.B. Goes on Sale

According to the Yorkshire Post, an exciting auction is in the making this weekend:

A RARE copy of a biography about the life of Charlotte Brontë which created a scandal in 19th century society is to go under the hammer tonight as a part of a weekend of activities celebrating Yorkshire's most famous literary family.
The second edition print of Elizabeth Gaskell's The Life of Charlotte Brontë is the prized item among a collection of 90 books which are being auctioned off at the Brontë Parsonage Museum in Haworth.

The book, which dates back to 1857, triggered two threats of libel action when it was printed and is expected to fetch hundreds of pounds.

The threats came from a woman who was said to have had an affair with Charlotte's brother Branwell Brontë and from the family which ran a school near Kirkby Lonsdale which the biography claimed had been the inspiration for Low Wood in Jane Eyre.

Now Brontë fans can get their hands on a 19th century copy of the book which was part of a collection bequeathed to the Brontë Parsonage Museum by Arthur D Walker, a librarian at Manchester University.

Museum librarian Ann Dinsdale said: "It is very rare to find a second edition copy of the biography. The book resulted in libel actions being threatened and was very controversial at the time.

"The rest of the collection includes scholarly editions and literary criticisms of the Brontës."

The auction opens the Brontë Society's annual weekend which runs until Tuesday. Tomorrow night four Brontë biographers will explore some of the stories which surround the family at a panel discussion in West Lane Baptist Chapel (7.30pm).

Juliet Barker, Edward Chitham, Rebecca Fraser and Lyndall Gordon will take part. Brontë Parsonage Museum deputy director Andrew McCarthy said: "It promises to be a fascinating evening."

No comments: