May, Lou and Cass: Jane Austen's Nieces in Ireland (Hardback)
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Marianne, Louisa and Cassandra Knight - May, Lou and Cass - were Jane Austen's nieces. Austen played with them as children and she sewed and read with them as they grew up. Her influence on them would be lifelong. Although born in England, May, Lou and Cass lived in Ireland for substantial periods of time and all are buried there. Marianne, never married, and she lived in Ireland from 1879 until her death in 1896; Cassandra married Lord George Hill, youngest brother of the powerful Marquis of Downshire, who set up as an improving landlord on an estate in Donegal; and Louisa, after the death of Cassandra in childbirth, moved to Ireland to look after her sister's family and home. She finally married Lord George. In May, Lou and Cass, Sophia Hillan, writer and academic, draws on a vast range of sources - including housekeeping records, diaries, manuscripts and letters from repositories throughout Ireland and England - to tell for the first time the fascinating story of the Knight sisters. Full of high drama - like Austen's novels, the story of May, Lou and Cass has its fair share of elopements, love matches and tragedies - Hillan's story uncovers a rich new seam of material on Jane Austen and her family and provides a fascinating link between Regency England and the turbulent world of nineteenth-century Ireland.
Blackstaff Press Ltd
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