Jane Austen

Austen ‘too ugly’ for book cover

The book cover shows Austen without her night-cap

Novelist Jane Austen has been given a makeover for the cover of a book about her life after publishers decided an original image of her was unattractive. “She was not much of a looker,” said Helen Trayler, managing director of publisher Wordsworth Editions. Publishers traditionally use a portrait of Austen painted by her sister but Wordsworth have added make-up, hair extensions and removed her night-cap. The book is a new edition of a memoir by Austen’s nephew.

The book cover was adapted from this portrait housed at the National Portrait Gallery

“I know you are not supposed to judge a book by its cover. Sadly people do. If you look more attractive, you just stand out more,” said Ms Trayler. The original painting by Cassandra Austen, which hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in
London, is thought by some scholars to be the only authentic portrait of the celebrated author.
But another portrait said to be of Austen is going up for auction at Christie’s in New York on 19 April and is expected to fetch between $400,000 (£203,000) and $800,000 (£406,000).

 

 

 

 I found this story on the BBC News web site. I have to say I think it is really sad that they have decided to change her looks just for the “sale “. The point is her work, not her looks and people would buy on that alone, not on a made up picture just to please our “image” clean  times, if she had a facial disfigurement would we change that too?

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