Clio from Chawton House – Tatty Devine

ByRonald A. Hurley

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Dearest readers, we are thrilled to advise you that our most current collaboration, Tatty Devine X Chawton Household has coaxed the interior Janeite out of just about every and each member of Group Tatty. Ignore the tattlings of Lady Whistledown, we’re heading straight to the oracle: give a regency wave to Clio O’Sullivan, lover of literature and Communications and General public Engagement Manager at Chawton Household! From magic formula scandals to all the Jane Austen relevant information and the record of Chawton House, join us for the within scoop now!

Can you explain what you do in five text?

Sharing tales of amazing women!


As with any great residence, its heritage is chequered with each individual subsequent technology earning their personal alterations and additions. That’s why it has these types of a exclusive form with rooms and staircases major to surprising sites! The Household arrived into the Knight spouse and children in the 1500s although not generally passing specifically from father to son. For this reason the Austen connection – Jane’s older brother inherited the Chawton estate from distant childless kinfolk with the stipulation he adjust his surname to Knight.

Edward gave the outdated bailiff’s cottage in the village to his mom and sisters in which to dwell lease absolutely free. In the 1990s American entrepreneur Sandy Lerner bought the lease from the Knight family and fully restored Chawton Residence, which had somewhat fallen into a condition of disrepair. She amassed a massive selection of early modern women’s writing and included the charity, Chawton Residence Library, into a centre of eighteenth-century study. Sandy stepped absent from Chawton Residence in 2016 and as effectively as remaining a put for scientists, we also became a beloved heritage website with Property, Gardens and Parkland open up to the community for site visitors to take pleasure in all yr round.

What is your favorite portion of this outlined creating? 

I really do adore the Oak Room, which would have been the ladies withdrawing place in Jane Austen’s working day. As these kinds of, we have hung portraits that reflect this perception of a female coterie, displaying artists, writers and actresses, including my favourite portrait, Mary Robinson. It has amazing views of the Gardens and distant Parkland and in accordance to Knight family legend is where Jane Austen applied to sit in the looking at alcove.

 Clio in the reading alcove in the Oak Area.


Do you have fun historical points about Chawton?

If you appear carefully, you will come across witch marks carved on various details of entry through the household: in excess of doorways, by fireplaces, on bannisters. These could search like careless scratches but basically offer you defense from evil spirits.


As a postgraduate investigation student finding out English, staying surrounded by the greatest feminist library we have at any time observed need to be so fascinating. What first drew you to Chawton House?


The library for certain! The collection supplied almost everything I required and far more although researching for my masters in eighteenth-century literature at Southampton, which include diaries, manuscripts and some novels observed nowhere else in the entire world. While there, I applied for their stay-in internship programme and bought to stay onsite for 6 weeks, which was just magical. Soon after that they questioned me to stay on in a non permanent role and seven several years later on here I nevertheless am! It’s really been the generating of me.  


It is been a aspiration for us to collaborate with you on a collection, what is your favourite piece and why?


Undoubtedly the Jane Austen Bookshelf Necklace – it is the best statement piece for any bibliophile. It is so beautiful and the wooden back provides so significantly depth to all the diverse coloured guides showcased, moreover it states Chawton on it!


You not long ago curated an exhibition at Chawton Property, A Costume of Sport, seeking at clothing worn for exercising in the Georgian and Regency periods, what was the stand out star you highlighted in the show?


You’re all no strangers to unconventional extras at Tatty Devine so I would say the pattens from the early 1800s. These are clumsy platforms, nailed to an iron ring to give women a bit of elevation, meant to guard their shoes and hems from filth. Jane Austen wore a pair and referred to “the ceaseless clink of pattens” in her novel Persuasion.



Pattens c.1800s, on mortgage to Chawton Dwelling from the Hampshire Cultural Trust

As certified Jane-ites, we have taken a nearer look at recurrent Chawton customer Jane Austen’s work in our selection. You have an future event about the scandals of Austen’s family members – is there any gossip you can share with us?
That is correct, I’m speaking on all points scandalous as aspect of Alton’s Jane Austen Regency Week in June. I will not give much too significantly absent but let’s just say there was a bit of a to-do when Jane Austen’s nephew ran off to Gretna Green for a hasty relationship! 

Is there nearly anything else thrilling coming up at Chawton that we just will need to know about?
I’m so excited for our summer time year of outdoor theatre! We have some amazing corporations coming to Chawton Dwelling for a single-off performances, starting off with the Handlebard’s Twelfth Night on June 15, followed by The Lord Chamberlain’s Males doing As You Like it on July 14. Then the hilarious The Great importance of Remaining Earnest on July 26 before closing with Satisfaction and Prejudice on September 4.

The Lord Chamberlain’s Adult men carrying out outdoor theatre on the South Lawn at Chawton House.


Completely ready for some quickfire questions…


Favorite Jane Austen e book? 


P&P if I want a chortle, Persuasion if I’m feeling sentimental.


Which inspirational girls really should we be following? 


Rupi Kaur’s poetry is constantly a source of inspiration to me and Jameela Jamil’s candid championing of women’s legal rights is both of those insightful and at instances hilarious.


Bonnets, yay or nay?


Why quit at bonnets?! I say yay to all historical hat use – I even wore a Regency Casqua a la Minerve to my cousin’s wedding!

On it like a bonnet!

Dying for a look close to but not in the Uk? Verify out Clio’s digital tour below!
Many thanks for chatting with us Clio, you are a correct historical hero and your flavor in headwear is dare we say, exquisite! Store our NEW collaboration with Chawton Dwelling on the internet and in-keep now. 


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