Saturday, 9 August 2014

Jane Austen and Bath

In 2007 I had the good fortune to return to Bath.

One day is not long enough to do justice to this beautiful city, but we managed to pack in quite a bit nonetheless! 
Because I had visited before there were some things I did not need to revisit (ie the Roman Baths - which was just as well, 
since the line to get in this time was horrendous!)

This time around I wanted to focus on Jane Austen.

I felt like Catherine Morland in Northanger Abbey...

"They arrived in Bath. Catherine was all eager delight; - her eyes were here, there, everywhere, as they approached its fine and striking environs, and afterwards drove through those streets which conducted them to the hotel. She was come to be happy, and she felt happy already".

Although, Jane, sadly, did not feel the same way about Bath in this letter from 1796:

"Here I am once more in this scene of dissipation and vice, and I begin already to find my morals corrupted."

Despite her own feelings about Bath, Jane was able to give two of her characters happy times and love in Bath - 
Anne Eliot & Catherine Morland have much fonder memories of Bath, than Jane.
There's a wonderful scene in the 1995 movie of Persuasion starring Amanda Roots.
When love seems lost and gone forever - Anne takes action & runs after Cpt Wentworth.
There's the confusion of a noisy street parade.
The crowds part...& there he is.
Ahhhh.
And it all happens right here!
Bath Abbey is beautiful - in any season -
- from any angle - no matter the era.
The Royal Crescent features in Persuasion & Northanger Abbey
For any devout Janeite a visit to Bath would not be complete without a stop at the Jane Austen Centre.
However, one of the joys of visiting Bath in modern times are the new hot baths springing (pun intended!) up everywhere.
We spent a couple of glorious, soothing, cleansing hours at Thermae Bath Spa.
The perfect way to end a busy day of tramping through the cold, dusty streets of Bath.

(We didn't take any photos inside the Spa - too busy relaxing and enjoying ourselves! 

But click on the link above to see just how gorgeous it is - heated roof top pool, scented sauna's - amazing!)
As Catherine Morland discovered in Northanger Abbey

"Oh! Who can ever be tired of Bath?" 

15 comments:

  1. I'm so looking forward to Bath. I wish I had time to re-read Northanger Abbey and Persuasion. But maybe I could watch the movies!

    Joy's Book Blog

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    1. Both movies would do the trick for sure - my recommendations would be the 1995 (I think) Persuasion movie with Amanda Roots & Cairan Hinds and the 1990's BBC production of Northanger starring Peter Firth.

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  2. How delicious this is! A book-ish adventure for sure!

    Here's my Saturday Snapshot!

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  3. I love all of the architecture in your photos! It would definitely be a fun place to visit.

    Sean at His and Her Hobbies

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  4. Bath is such a classic place, and lovely to see the same buildings and places Jane had seen, and follow her Catherine in (re)discovering it. I was there in 2007 too, December. Thanks for stopping by my Bath post and liking it. :)

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  5. My husband and I visited Bath but we had limited time there. Now that I've seen your photos, I definitely want to go back. Just beautiful.
    Thank you for leaving a comment on my Mount Rainier post.

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  6. Bath has been the setting for a few books I've read, including some mysteries. It does seem to lend itself to a sense of mystery and secrecy. Thanks for sharing.

    Here's MY SATURDAY SNAPSHOT POST

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  7. How lucky to visit Bath! I would feel like I was in one of Austen's novels if I ever got to go. :)

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  8. Thanks for sharing your wonderful photos. I will never get to England. But I love seeing all the sights through others' eyes.

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  9. I visited Bath when I did a summer term abroad while at William and Mary...I agree! You can't do it in one day!

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  10. As you know, I'm not a J A fanatic but this is a great blog

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    1. Mr Seasons said last night, he would probably read P&P as his next read...so there's hope for you yet Anne ;-)

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  11. I'd love to do the JA tour of Bath one day. Great photos Brona- I'm a bit jealous.

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    1. After drooling jealously over your France photos this past year, I'm glad to finally return the favour Louise :-D

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    2. Oh there's plenty more France photos where they came from! And there'll be more after October....

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