chapter  4
27 Pages

Tales of Inheritance from West Kent 1

WithMark Ballard

The Horsmonden inheritance is examined closely, and then Tonbridge, where George Austen himself inherited land. Jane Austen's familiarity with the area is suggested by her use of local surnames for some of her characters, which she must have heard in family conversation. Although evidence of Jane Austen's firsthand acquaintance with West Kent is slight, the area was significant in her geographical imagination the Reverend George Austen, was born in Tonbridge and educated at Tonbridge School, as were his half-brother and several cousins. In a tale male, the line cannot pass through a female; and it has been predetermined that in this situation the remainderman's line will inherit. The settlement on George Hooper and Betty Austen settled about 230 acres and gave rise to similar complaints while the groom's father was alive. The property in question had included the house of George Austen's father, William, in Bank Street, Tonbridge, where George himself is likely to have been born.