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Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Lansdown Crescent, Bath

'Could it be Mr Elliot? They knew he was to dine in Lansdown Crescent. It was possible that he might stop in his way home, to ask them how he did'.  This mention of Lansdown Crescent in Persuasion is a testament to Mr Elliot's eligibility, as it was a very fashionable street.
The Historic and Local New Bath Guide (1802) describes the Crescent (at one time known as the Upper Crescent) as a 'grand and stately pile of buildings that seems to crown the city'.
Residents enjoyed picturesque views of the 'town sloping to the Avon; on the west, the valley winding towards Bristol, diversified by the hands of nature and art in the most elegant manner; hills swelling over hills, and vales intersecting vales, adorned with woods, lawns and gardens, display their several charms'.
In April 1805, after attending church, Jane Austen and her mother visited the Irvine family at 19 Lansdown Crescent to take tea with them.One of the Crescent's more famous residents (several years after Jane Austen's death) was William Beckford, the author of Vathek.
Image: The Album of Bath Views, Charles, Reynolds & Co., c.1890.