238 today!!!!! 238 today!!!!!
Happy Birthday Jane!!!!
Have a great one.
This is The Dolphin Hotel in Southampton where on the 16th December 1793 Jane Austen celebrated her 18th birthday.
Fifteen years later, after moving from Bath and whilst living in Castle Square Southampton,with her mother, Cassandra her sister , Martha Lloyd her best friend and her brother Frank and his wife Mary, she attended another ball at The Dolphin.It was probably on 8th December 1808 because on the 9th December she wrote to Cassandra about it. It was eight days before her 33rd birthday.
Writing to Cassandra, who was staying with Edward in Godmersham Park in Kent, she said,
"Our ball was rather more amusing than I expected,Martha liked it very much,and I did not gape till the last quarter of an hour.-It was past nine before we were sent for,and not twelve when we returned.-The room was tolerably full,and there were perhaps thirty couples of Dancers;-the melancholy part was to see so many dozen young Women standing by without partners,and each of them with two ugly naked shoulders!-It was the same room in which we danced 15 years ago!-I thought it all over- and inspite of the shame of being so much older, felt with thankfulness that I was quite as happy now as then.-We paid an additional shilling for our Tea, which we took as we chose in adjoining,and very comfortable room.-There were only four dances and it went to my heart that the Miss Lances(one of them too named Emma!) should have partners only for two.-You will not expect to hear that I was asked to dance- but I was- by the Gentleman whom we met that Sunday with Captain D'auvergne."
The ballroom in The Dolphin.
Another view of the ballroom today.
A view from one of the bay windows.