Friday, March 23, 2007

Jane Austen Too Ugly To Be On The Cover Of Her Book?

This just in from the "Gimme' a Break" Department:

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 [at top right] but Wordsworth have added make-up, hair extensions and removed her night-cap [at lower right].
The book is a new edition of a memoir by Austen's nephew.

"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...

Here's the rest of this BBC story. Too, too weird.