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Thanks! -- Arnie Perlstein, Portland, OR

Monday, December 26, 2011

A Post Christmas Quiz

I just sleuthed out something interesting yesterday about the literary lineage leading to, and the literary lineage leading away from, Jane Austen---connections that, in hindsight, it amazes me that I seem to be the first to notice, because this one has really been hiding in plain sight for over a century and a half!

I will reveal exactly what I found by tomorrow morning 10 am EST, but as this find seems to be particularly suited to a quiz for those so inclined, I will give five hints which, for a Janeite reasonably knowledgeable in Austen studies, should make this quiz quite solvable in an enjoyable way:

Hint #1: There is a work published during JA's lifetime but prior to JA's reaching adulthood, written by a person who was fairly famous then, but who rapidly faded to obscurity during JA's adulthood, and is only known today to academic scholars of a particular ideological slant (which I share).

Hint #2: There is a work published within a half century _after_ JA's death, written by a person who was very famous, and who has remained well known, and who was famously very positive toward JA's writing, in a way that is known to a fair # of Janeites today.

Hint #3: There is a work written by JA herself which has virtually the same title, and the same general subject matter, as those other two works.

Hint #4: The author of the work from JA's youth, and the author of the work published long after JA's death, both have _exactly_ the same last name.

Hint #5: That shared last name of those other two authors is not a coincidence, but reflects that they were--apparently unknown to scholars working in regard to either of them--related by marriage!

OK, that's a lot of hints, I bet it won't take someone long to figure out the identity of the other two writers, and the shared title of the three works. Please bring forward your answers today!

Then I will explain why I find it amazing that I seem to be the first person to notice pretty much all of these connections, and I will also suggest some intriguing implications for further investigation that arise out of the answers to this little quiz.

Cheers, ARNIE

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