Jane Austen (1775-1817) is generally accepted to be one of the most important and talented English novelists.
Her novels include Sense and Sensibility (1811), Pride and Prejudice (1813), Emma (1816), Northanger Abbey (1818) and Persuasion (1818). She also left one unfinished novel, which was published eventually under the title Sanditon.
Although she writes almost exclusively about the social and romantic lives of the English gentry (the circles in which she herself moved), any limitations in terms of plot or social milieu are more than compensated for by her acute observation of the aspirations and foibles of this section of society, and her ability to portray these in an amusing and convincing way. As recent adaptations of her work for film and television have shown, she is adept at conveying the passionate feelings which underlie both the restraint and decorum of her heroines' behaviour, and the restraint and decorum of her own literary style.