It is finally here!
The new £10 featuring Jane Austen has finally been released by the Bank of England, on the 200th anniversary of her death. Austen becomes the first female writer (following Charles Dickens and William Shakespeare) to be ever featured on a banknote.
The note, which was revealed at Austen’s resting place, Winchester Cathedral, includes an image of Austen and one of her favorite characters, Elizabeth Bennet. Other images include Godmersham Park in Kent, her brother Edward Austen Knight’s home, which has been known as a source of inspiration for her.
This is a joyous occasion for fellow Austen enthusiasts but the quote used on the banknote did raise some eyebrows. The line comes from Pride and Prejudice: “I declare after all there is no enjoyment like reading!” At first glance, there is no appropriate quote than that.
However, the quote was spoken by Caroline Bingley, a character who faked her interest in books because Mr. Darcy was a reading a book and wanted to show interest in his interests.
This note is different from the other sterling notes. It has security features that will make it very difficult for it to counterfeit and stronger durability, so it will last longer through circulation.
Want to get one? Unfortunately, fellow Austen fans, the note won’t be ready to be used until later this year. They will be released on September 14 and the public will be able to used them in the following weeks.