The Annotated Pride and Prejudice
Publication Date: March 13, 2007
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This first-ever fully annotated edition of one of the most beloved novels in the world is a sheer delight for Jane Austen fans. Here is the complete text of Pride and Prejudice with more than 2,300 annotations on facing pages, including:
• Explanations of historical context
Rules of etiquette, class differences, the position of women, legal and economic realities, leisure activities, and more.
• Citations from Austen’s life, letters, and other writings
Parallels between the novel and Austen’s experience are revealed, along with writings that illuminate her beliefs and opinions.
• Definitions and clarifications
Archaic words, words still in use whose meanings have changed, and obscure passages are explained.
• Literary comments and analyses
Insightful notes highlight Austen’s artistry and point out the subtle ways she develops her characters and themes.
• Maps and illustrations
of places and objects mentioned in the novel.
• An introduction, a bibliography, and a detailed chronology of events
Of course, one can enjoy the novel without knowing the precise definition of a gentleman, or what it signifies that a character drives a coach rather than a hack chaise, or the rules governing social interaction at a ball, but readers of The Annotated Pride and Prejudice will find that these kinds of details add immeasurably to understanding and enjoying the intricate psychological interplay of Austen’s immortal characters.
Jane Austen (1775–1817) was born in Hampshire, England, where she spent most of her life. Though she received little recognition in her lifetime, she came to be regarded as one of the great masters of the English novel.
David M. Shapard is the author of The Annotated Pride and Prejudice, The Annotated Persuasion, The Annotated Sense and Sensibility, and The Annotated Emma. He graduated with a Ph.D. in European History from the University of California at Berkeley; his specialty was the eighteenth century. Since then he has taught at several colleges. He lives in upstate New York.