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Exhibition marks 200th anniversary of Austen's 'Emma'

The two hundredth anniversary of one of Jane Austen's most famous novels is being celebrated in Hampshire. The author, who was born in Steventon a few miles from Abingdon in Oxfordshire, wrote 'Emma' in the village of Chawton near Alton. A special exhibition is being held at Chawton House library.

Emma at 200: from English Village to Global Appeal, opens today and marks the novel's global appeal and its enduring popularity.

"Jane Austen's Emma is often considered to be the most 'accomplished' of her novels, and it's the one that is truly inspired by her setting of 'three or four families in a country village'."

– Dr Gillian Dow, Executive Director of Chawton House Library and University of Southampton Associate Professor in English

Items on show include an English first edition of the novel, a first edition from America and a first French translation - both published in 1816. The story has featured on television and film, as well as being adapted to a modern day setting as the inspiration for a Hollywood film.

The exhibition continues at Chawton House Library until Sunday 25th September.

More details here.

"Many people are surprised that England's Jane Austen was published in countries beyond England in her own lifetime - she had no idea, of course, that Emma was in Paris booksellers in 1816.

"Certainly her popularity accelerated in the 20th and 21st century making Jane Austen the global phenomenon she is today. I am delighted to be organising and hosting this exhibition to help reflect this novel's impact worldwide."

– Dr Gillian Dow, Curator of exhibition

Man dies in 3-vehicle pile up - man & woman in hospital

Hampshire Police are investigating a fatal collision involving three vehicles. The accident happened on the A31 southbound between the Chawton roundabout and Four Marks Village last night.

The emergency services were called to the scene at 6.52pm. One man died at the scene. A man and a woman are in hospital with minor injuries.

The road was closed in both directions until the early hours of this morning.

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Jane Austen ring goes on display

A ring, once owned by Jane Austen is going on display for the first time at her former home at Chawton in Hampshire.

The ring was bought by American singer Kelly Clarkson at auction, but an export ban meant it couldn't leave the country.

An anonymous donor then gave 100 thousand pounds to buy the ring back. ITV Meridian spoke to Curator Mary Guyatt.