It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single person in possession of a boatload of cash, must be in want of a rare Jane Austen letter.
And if that’s you, good news: an 1813 letter from the Pride and Prejudice author written to her sister will be up for auction later this month, the Guardian reports.
The letter is one of approximately 160 notes written by Austen that weren’t destroyed by the author’s family. The auction house Bonhams expects it to fetch anywhere from $80,000 to $120,000.
In a description of the letter on its website, Bonhams says it discusses “their brother Edward’s china from Wedgwood’s, music lessons, the children’s dentistry, and Mrs. Tilson’s child-bearing among other intimate affairs.” (It’s a throwback to a simpler time, as nowadays people only discuss their brother’s china via text messages.)
Bonhams says the letter boasts a “wonderfully Austenian line”: “We are now all four of us young Ladies sitting round the Circular Table in the inner room writing our Letters, while the two Brothers are having a comfortable coze in the room adjoining.” It also discusses Austen’s mother’s health — apparently the woman was “no longer in need of leeches,” which, hooray.
Austen-related items have fetched large sums at auction before. In 2013, a watercolor portrait of the author sold for $270,000 at an auction in London.
The letter from Austen to her sister will be auctioned on Oct. 23 in New York.
Michael Schaub is an Austin, Texas-based journalist and regular contributor to NPR.