Tuesday, August 18, 2020

Armaghi is very proud to promote the Irish Brontë Homeland Trail:
The start of the signposted ten-mile trail reflects two great loves of Patrick’s life, preaching and teaching. It was at the now beautifully restored Drumballyroney Church, in Church Hill Road, that the father of the Brontës preached his first sermon following his return from Cambridge after his ordination in 1806. In recent years this hugely atmospheric church has become renowned as the venue of the popular Brontë Folk Club.
Next door is the old schoolhouse where Patrick taught as a young man. His daughters would have known all about the long evenings in which the youthful Patrick studied by candlelight, bringing his education up to the standard required by Cambridge University, where he would study theology at St John’s College. It was at Cambridge that he changed his surname from Brunty (or Prunty) to Brontë. An exhibition here tells his story in detail.
He grew to be an imposing man, “tall, well formed and of good presence with fine and almost classic features.”
Why not take a picnic and stop and enjoy the rolling hills and spectacular backdrop of the Mountains of Mourne at the Brontë Homeland Picnic Site in Knockiveagh, off the Lisnacroppan Road, little changed since Patrick’s time.
Just off the Brontë Road is Alice McClory’s Cottage, the childhood home of Patrick’s mother, Alice McClory. Her parents were not keen on her courtship with Hugh, Patrick’s father, so the couple were forced to meet secretly. It is believed they eloped to their wedding at Magherally Church, near Banbridge.
Little now remains of the family’s two-roomed cottage in the fairy glen at Emdale, off the Brontë Road, where Patrick was born but it is an important part of the trail and you will appreciate the beauty of the scenery he absorbed as a child.
Finally, Glascar School, off Glascar Road (this 1844 building replaced the original school), is where the young Patrick had his first teaching post in the 1790s. Said to have been an enlightened teacher, this is probably one story Patrick would not have passed on to his daughters. He was dismissed for forming a romantic attachment with a pupil!
The Spectator has a list of books with unexpected twists:
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Brontë
The best-known film twists tend to occur towards the end of a movie, sending an audience reeling just before the credits roll. Literary twists sometimes follow a similar pattern, but there are also plenty of examples of books in which these big moments occur earlier in the plot. Take Jane Eyre as a prime example.
In Charlotte Brontë’s rightly revered gothic romance, our heroine prepares to marry the grumpy aristo of her dreams, Mr Rochester, only to have her wedding ceremony interrupted by two strangers who inform her that her fiancé is already married. Rochester is forced to come clean and he reveals that his first wife Bertha Mason is hidden away in his country pile. This ‘mad woman in the attic’ reveal is a dramatic, soap operatic moment, and one of the most famous twists in literature. (Will Gore)
McSweeney's unveils some little known 'canon facts':
Jane Eyre called Mr. Rochester “Rocky” when they were in bed together. This sucks but is also canon. (Caitlin Kunkel and Lillian Stone)
Slowly, some theatre initiatives are beginning to blossom. Cache Valley Daily reports that
The Music Theatre West Encore concert at the Ellen Eccles Theatre over the weekend was the closest thing to a full-scale musical production we’ve seen since March, thanks to the coronavirus pandemic. (...) The Encore concert was blessed with skillful direction by Debbie Ditton and piano accompaniment by MTW founder Jay Richards. The events featured more than 20 veteran performers, dressed to kill, thrillingly reprising a dozen musical numbers from the company’s productions since 2008.
Marianne Sidwell led the company’s chorus in “Madness Up the Stairs” from the original MTW production of “Jane Eyre” as did Sebrina Woodland in “Getting to Know You” from “The King and I.” (Charlie Schill)
Tor.com reviews the novel The Opal-Eyed Fan by Andre Norton:
Heroine Persis, modeled on the likes of Jane Eyre—tending toward the plain end of the looks spectrum but still attractive to men—has a somewhat complicated history. Her uncle has lost much of his fortune but has hoped to recoup it on this voyage to the Caribbean. Persis discovers that he, and after his death she, has inherited the property of a late relative. The inheritance is shadowed by old, dark secrets, and there are challengers, one of whom turns out to be the wicked Captain Grillon. (Judith Tarr)
The Daily Star (Bangladesh) finds solace in books during times of strife:
But to return to the books and our cosy corner, in my childhood, I loved Emily Brontë and her 'Wuthering Heights,' and Sydney Carton in 'A Tale of Two Cities.' For complex stories, when I was a little older, I discovered Dorothy Dunnett and her 'Lymond' series, and for English light humour, Jilly Cooper. Still later, I began to love Stephen Leacock for his amazing humour. I could go on forever. (Nasrin Sobhan) 
The Epoch Times comments on fiction and fan fiction:
In the 21st century, readers have commented on the resemblances between the fictional stories that the young Brontë siblings wrote about real-life contemporary figures such as the Duke of Wellington, and 20th- and 21st-century forms of fan fiction. (The Conversation)
Dothan Eagle lists the best TV miniseries according to imdb:
56. Jane Eyre (2006). The BBC’s serial adaptation of Charlotte Brontë’s “Jane Eyre” offers a vivid portrayal of the novel’s tale of an orphan-turned-governess who falls in love with a man with a dark past. The series earned nominations and awards from the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, the Emmys, and the Golden Globes, among others. (Joni Sweet)
El Observador (Uruguay) echoes the possible cancellation of Anne with an E:
La pelirroja de trenzas que vivió demasiado para su corta edad y puede recitar Jane Eyre de memoria.  (Translation)
iCrewplay (Italy) reviews the novel Baci da Polignano by Luca Bianchini:
In Baci da Polignano sono presenti due grandi classici della letteratura, entrambi in lettura dalla protagonista Ninella.
Si tratta di Cime tempestose di Emily Brontë, non a caso un romanzo d’amore, e La lettera scarlatta dello statunitense Nathaniel Hawthorne, anche questo non inserito nelle mani di Ninella per caso. (Translation)
Inspirational recovery quotes, including a Charlotte one, on Legit. El Día and Infobae (Argentina) both mention La Migration des Coeurs by Maryse Condé.

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