February 21, 2013

Jane Austen stamps.



"So, placing the candle with great caution on a chair, she seized the key with a very tremulous hand and tried to turn it; but it resisted her utmost strength. Alarmed, but not discouraged, she tried it another way; a bolt flew, and she believed herself successful; but how strangely mysterious! The door was still immovable. She paused a moment in breathless wonder. The wind roared down the chimney, the rain beat in torrents against the windows, and everything seemed to speak the awfulness of her situation."

See the rest of the new stamps here.

34 comments:

McTriumph said...

I love Jane Austen. I'm a strait guy. Should I seek help?

YoungHegelian said...

I've got nothing against Jane Austen. I actually like Jane Austen. I just don't understand the ga-ga level of enthusiasm for her out there in the world at large.

Now, Laurence Sterne. That's a stamp I'd buy.

kentuckyliz said...

My English rellies need to send me those.

Astro said...

In his 1946 murder-mystery novel 'The Moving Toyshop' (set in Oxford) author Edmund Crispin has two of his characters play a game: Detestable Characters In Fiction whom the author intended to be sympathetic.
The main character, Fen, wins with "Those vulgar little man-hunting minxes in Pride And Prejudice."

Astro said...

Forced to read P&P in high school, I hated it. A few years ago, on a dare, I re-read it and found a lot of snide humor I enjoyed that I'd missed as a teenager.
Nevertheless, I find myself in agreement with Mark Twain, concerning Jane Austen:

"Jane Austen? Why I go so far as to say that any library is a good library that does not contain a volume by Jane Austen. Even if it contains no other book."

"I haven't any right to criticise books, and I don't do it except when I hate them. I often want to criticise Jane Austen, but her books madden me so that I can't conceal my frenzy from the reader; and therefore I have to stop every time I begin. Everytime I read 'Pride and Prejudice' I want to dig her up and beat her over the skull with her own shin-bone."

"... is it her purpose to make the reader detest her people up to the middle of the book and like them in the rest of the chapters? That could be. That would be high art. It would be worth while, too. Some day I will examine the other end of her books and see."

Coketown said...

This post brings back fond memories. Whenever I wish to recapture that antiquated age of horse-drawn buggies and candle-lit corridors--that age left untouched by the cold, calculated march of Progress and Technology--I mail a letter though the Post Office.

Explain again why that obsolete piece of shit institution is still limping along on the taxpayer's dime. Please. Anyone?

Shana said...

My husband, a very, very straight guy loves Jane Austen.

Astro, I am also an Edmund Crispin fan. My favorite is Buried for Pleasure. It seemed to me to be what Flannery O'Connor would write if she wrote Golden Age English mysteries.

edutcher said...

They are all nice, much nicer than the dreck we get from the Post Office, but the one Ann used, the second, is absolutely beautiful.

edutcher said...

kentuckyliz said...

My English rellies need to send me those.

If they have any others that nice, could you share them here?

Palladian said...

Explain again why that obsolete piece of shit institution is still limping along on the taxpayer's dime. Please. Anyone?

Article I, section 8, clause 7 of the US Constitution, baby!

Not even marriage and health care get that kind of endorsement!

Wen said...

Fear not for our heroine friends, for what lies hidden behind that door is as mundane and common as cabbages... or postal stamps.

Palladian said...

The back of the chair is incorrectly drawn in the stamp depicted above. Learn to draw in perspective before learning how to draw flowing white gowns.

mccullough said...

I dig Northanger Abbey. Subtle parody and critique of Gothic literature.

William said...

I read most of her books. They're much shorter than anything written by the Brontes and hardly anyone croaks.

YoungHegelian said...

Okay, so I've got a dirty mind, but I'm sorry I simply don't believe that this was unintentional!

If it was, then Palladian is right and the illustrator needs to go back to the art school on the matchbook cover & learn to draw Peter The Pirate again.

Saint Croix said...

It's kinda embarrassing to admit but I cannot read Jane Austen. Cannot. Read. Jane. Austen. Zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz. She goes on and on and on and on and on and on and on about status and money and status and who's who in the who's who. Mark Twain hated her and I Can See Why. But she's a plotting madman. Madwoman?

Anyway, the movies based on her books are amazing. For instance, Pride and Prejudice. It's been done several times, but my favorite is this one with Keira.

She’s so passionate. A lot of actresses have trouble playing hate or anger. They don’t want to go over to the dark side--they want to be likable--so they hold back. Keira lets it go. She feels the hate, she feels it. Her sister is so nice and she loses it on her sister’s behalf. She feels the hate because she feels the love. And Darcy’s like, holy crap, what a volcano. It wakes his ass up. Just a beautiful love story.

So the book's unreadable and the movie is amazing. The movie is way better! Near as I can figure out, they cut out most of her words. I just can't read those damn books. Shhhh. It's embarrassing. I'm embarrassed. Don't tell anybody. They're so bad! Good for some people, I guess.

I am a huge fan of Clueless, which is an awesome virgin adaptation of Emma. And, of course, there is an awesome version of the source material, too, with Gwyneth Paltrow. It's like Clueless except with hoop skirts. Really fantastic. Austen is the bomb. I wish I could read her.

Mansfield Park is amazing, too.

The only Austen movie I disliked was Sense and Sensibility. This Jane Austen adaptation doesn't work because Emma Thompson is a woman. And I know she wrote it and produced it and wanted to do it so bad, but you're a woman, Emma. You need to be a girl. A young, crazy, virgin girl. Not an old maid. In Jane Austen World you are an old maid when you're 24. That's half the fun of Jane Austen, these 16-year-old girls in a panic because they don't have a man. Emma Thompson is like 32 or some damn thing. That's grandmother age in Jane Austen world. You can play the woman who's in a panic because her 16-year-old daughter doesn't have a man. That's who you are, Emma. The 32-year-old. Not the 16-year-old. And don't even pretend like you can pass. Cause I got the underage radar, and it ain't beepin'.

Foobarista said...

The dude with bad teeth always gets the girl in the end...

Darrell said...

Lady Mary (250-yo ghost) to Hal: “Do you ever listen to yourself? It’s like the shipping forecast took a shit in your ear.” Being Human UK "Pie and Prejudice."

Chip Ahoy said...

Toni made me read Pride and Prejudice and I hated it. For the first half. It took me that long to realize that the voice of Elizabeth is timeless and that is her appeal. She is a universal timeless woman stuck in that period and everything that we find ridiculous in her the situation she describes, she finds ridiculous too. Elizabeth and the reader become kindred spirits as they both judge the values that motivate everybody's nearly intolerable behavior.

And then in the end, and this is the sick part, the reader is vastly satisfied just as Elizabeth is vastly satisfied, that Elizabeth finds just right marriage partner and just the right fine house. And you want to kick your own ass for loving it so much.

Shanna said...

I just reread Northanger Abbey. I didn't realize the first time I read it how funny it was. Love that stamp!

Rusty said...

I'm waiting for the "Cold Comfort Farm" stamps.

"There's no butter in hell." Would make a nice first day cover.

Larry J said...

That's a pretty expensive stamp.

1.28 GBP = 1.95940 USD

sydney said...

I first read Jane Austen in college when we were assigned Emma in English literature. I read it in a hurry as I was much more interested in learning my chemistry and biology, etc. for medical school. As a result, I thought it was just a stupid romance novel. However, I took Jane Austen up again in my late thirties and it was then I caught her subtle wit and satire. She is timeless. The romance is just the housing for her real story.

My favorite is Persuasion. She really gets her digs in at the class and money obsessed of her society in that one.

Shanna said...

My favorite is Persuasion.

I read P&P at 16 and decided then that that was my favorite book and I haven't changed my mind, but I really appreciate Persuasion so much as an adult because it's all about making dumb decisions as a child and living with the regret. Of course, Jane Austen believes in happy endings so Anne gets a second chance.

Astro said...

Coketown, I still use snail mail for my bills. I refuse to trust my money to an online banking system that can crash or get hacked.
My letter carrier is a nice lady that I wave at if I see her go by. Periodically I put a check in the orange USPS envelope, and set it in the mailbox. She takes the check out and leaves me a book of stamps, so it's pretty convenient.
Yeah, I know that in general the system sucks - but it's not all sucky.

Astro said...

Shana, I read the Fen books ages ago and recently started rereading them. I can't remember 'Buried for Pleasure' but now you've spurred my interest to get to it.

Btw, if your husband likes JA, he might also like the sea novels of Patrick O'Brian.

McTriumph said...

Saint Croix
Good movie reviews. I'd have to agree with the Keira P&P being the best, but the others are worth seeing. I also agree with your dissatisfaction with Thompson's age playing Emma, but the Paltrow's version is too glossy for my taste.
I'm snowed in, Netflix is working, I might just have a Austen movie day. Before you ask, no, I don't have a life.

McTriumph said...

Rusty
Never read "Cold Comfort Farm", but loved the movie.

“I saw something nasty in the woodshed.”

Shanna said...

I'd have to agree with the Keira P&P being the best

Colin Firth was by far the best Mr Darcy. I didn't make it all the way through the Keira P&P. It was too...frantic, maybe? I don't know.

Timotheus said...

"Jane Austen's books...are absent from this library. Just that one omission alone would make a fairly good library out of a library that hadn't a book in it." -- Mark Twain, Following the Equator

Timotheus said...

"Jane Austen's books...are absent from this library. Just that one omission alone would make a fairly good library out of a library that hadn't a book in it." -- Mark Twain, Following the Equator

Anthony said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anthony said...

I'm a 50-year old male and just read my first Austen novel last year, Northanger Abbey. I'd never had an inclination to read one before, but a lady of my acquaintance mentioned reading Northanger while standing in line at the DMV and found it hilarious. So I went ahead and downloaded it.

Now, keeping in mind what Jeremy Clarkson had to say about Austen -- "Driving a Lexus has always been like sitting in a bucket of warm wallpaper paste, reading a Jane Austen novel” -- I was suspicious but went forth.

And it was hilarious! Loved it. The girls could have been from any period up to and including the present. It was utterly charming.

I've tried P&P since, but can't get into it though. *sigh*

ad hoc said...

I am currently rereading P&P (it's almost free on Kindle) and just go to the part where Elizabeth declines Darcy's proposal. I like Jane Austen; her characters both are creatures of their time ("man-hunting minxes") and timeless in outlook. She also skewers class and money in a deft and humorous way.

Emma is probably my favorite. A few years ago, Masterpiece did a version that was very good with Michael Gambon as Emma's father.