Today (it's currently the 16th December in England, as well as in New Zealand) marks 235 years since Jane Austen was born. She died tragically young, especially since she came from a generally long-lived family, but what a legacy she left. Her works seem to be more popular than ever, making frequent appearances on lists of favourite books.
They're certainly high on my personal best-loved list. They're among those few books that I never tire of re-reading, often discovering some clever detail that I've never noticed before. Jane may be 235, but for me she never gets old.
Back in the 1980s when we lived in England, a visit to Chawton Cottage was one of our first journeys. To walk among the rooms where Jane composed so much of her work was a real privilege. Our photographs of that visit don't seem to have survived the multiple moves since, but the memories are precious.
A virtual tour can be taken here.