The Austen/Clarkson Controversy

August 15, 2013

austen ringAmerican pop star and first American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson bought a gold and topaz ring owned by Jane Austen at an auction last year. But British Austen-lovers want the ring, only one of three pieces of jewelry belonging to Jane Austen, to stay in the UK. And thanks to a recent anonymous $155,000 donation, that goal may just be met. Ms. Clarkson, who also owns a first edition of Persuasion, said she’d be willing to sell the ring to a British buyer if he/she can meet the price she paid ($235,700 according to press reports).  Louise West, curator of The Austen House Museum is  hoping to add the ring to their collection (which already includes the writer’s turquoise bracelet and topaz cross) in time for next year’s bicentennial celebration of the publication of Mansfield Park. So will Clarkson return the ring under friendly “Persuasion” or because she has “Sense and Sensibility“? You can read more of the article here. (Note: some publications describe the ring as gold and turquoise, while others say it’s gold and topaz)


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