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Commemorating the Anniversary of Jane Austen’s death with Roses.

July 18, 2012

Jane Austen died this day in 1817. Visitors to the Museum may not be aware that some of the plants in the garden have been carefully chosen to commemorate Jane Austen’s life.  There are two roses growing here which neatly represent a link from Chawton with her final resting place, Winchester, and also with her enduring fame.

The beautiful white English Rose, Winchester Cathedral, which was bred by the famed rose breeder, David Austin, is planted in the borders surrounding the house. The rose is named after the place where Jane Austen died and was buried.

She left her home at Chawton for the last time on the 24th May 1817 in order to go to Winchester to be treated there. Her health was failing and she needed more expert care than could be provided by the local apothecary. She lived in lodgings in College Street, but her treatment there was not successful and she died on the 18th July. She was buried in the north aisle of Winchester Cathedral.

The rose is a beautiful creamy-white flower, and flowers throughout the season, and is a fitting link between the two places.

Visitors to the museum enter the house via a side door, and next to it is the entrance to the kitchen. In the summer this is framed with fragrant pale pink roses.

 The rose is Blush Noisette, which was first raised from seed in America by the French horticulturist, Philippe Noisette. He sent plants of the rose to his bother, Louis Claude Noisette, in Paris, and he introduced it to the pubic in 1817. Which was, of course, the year Jane Austen died. The rose is a vigorous survivor from that year, rather in the way Jane Austen’s works and reputation have survived and blossomed for nearly 200 years since her untimely death which we commemorate today.

 So, when you next visit the museum in summer do seek out these fragrant and very appropriately chosen roses, to remember the woman whose works have so enriched our lives.

12 Comments leave one →
  1. ellaherself permalink
    July 18, 2012 12:51 pm

    Reblogged this on Thoughts and Whatnots.

  2. cathyallen permalink
    July 18, 2012 5:11 pm

    Lovely, lovely, lovely! What a lovely way to remember our Jane (sorry; rather cheeky of me, I know!). I expect she’d be pleased with the roses at her home. My white rose bush (for which I don’t know the name, but I suspect it’s Iceberg because some of the blooms have the palest blush of pink) is blooming outside my bedroom window. I shall have to look at it when I get home, and remember your beautiful pictures, and Jane Austen’s House Museum. Thank you!

    • jfwakefield permalink*
      July 19, 2012 2:55 pm

      Thank you, Cathy. I think she might enjoy the roses, especially as they have been planted with such careful thought 🙂

  3. Luciane Muller permalink
    July 18, 2012 5:34 pm

    Nothing better than these beautiful roses to honor this brilliant writer and woman!

    • jfwakefield permalink*
      July 19, 2012 2:54 pm

      Absolutely! Thank you so much for commenting,Luciane

  4. July 20, 2012 1:37 pm

    Breathtakingly beautiful, and a very thoughtful arrangement of roses indeed, it just adds more meaning to her life. I like things like this, thank you.

  5. Aline permalink
    July 25, 2012 11:29 am

    How lovely and beautiful! I must say roses are the best way to honor someone we love… Jane absolutely deserves it!

  6. aurora permalink
    August 15, 2012 7:59 pm

    Jane is a rose of literature and a true lady.

  7. Theresa Hollis permalink
    January 6, 2013 5:23 am

    I have been a fan of Jane Austin for many years, these roses bring her more to life than any stone memorial, she lives in flowers what a tribute to a remarkable woman.

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