Help save Brontë’s 1830 version of “Mad Magazine” for the public

Bronte manuscript. Image from:

KW writes: For all of us Jane Eyre and Charlotte Bronte fans, this tiny book is a rare find! Written when Bronte was only 14 years old, it is a brilliant piece of satire.

Bronte created this tiny work in the format of a men’s magazine. It includes a witty ad (see below), which observes economics and social justice in her usually insightful, though aloof, manner. It’s a kind of Mad Magazine for the 19th century. And, it contains a hint into her future sociological writing — such as her reflections on charity schools in Jane Eyre, and her observations on class, church, and charity in the novel, Shirley.

(excerpt from) The Telegraph & Argus
[Brontë] Parsonage Museum in Haworth [England] is eager to ensure ‘national treasure’ is not lost to the public
UK/November 14, 2011

An appeal has been launched to help fund the purchase of a rare Charlotte Brontë manuscript.

The Brontë Parsonage Museum is appealing for financial support from the public and funding bodies.

It needs to raise up to £300,000 to cover the expected cost of buying the work at an auction next month.

The unpublished manuscript contains three works written by Charlotte – author of Jane Eyre – when she was 14.

Charlotte’s Young Men’s Magazine Number 2 contains 4,000 words set in a fictional world created by the famous literary siblings.

The book, until now in private ownership, is believed to have never before been seen by scholars.

The Parsonage Museum, in Haworth, hopes to buy the 19-page book when it is auctioned at Sotheby’s in London on December 15. The manuscript is expected to fetch between £200,000 and £300,000, and the museum wants to ensure it becomes available to the public…

More about the manuscript…

(excerpt from) Daily Mail UK
It’s all in the small print: Tiny Bronte manuscript that introduces world to Jane Eyre character Bertha goes up for auction
By Dalya Alberge / November 9, 2011

…With hand-cut pages, she replicated the format of printed periodicals of the day, complete with table of contents, articles, poetry and classified advertisements, one of which reads: ‘Six young men wish to let themselves all a hire for the purpose of cleaning out pockets they are in reduced CIRCUMSTANCES [sic].’

Inspired by Blackwood’s Magazine, to which her father subscribed, she called hers The Young Men’s Magazine, Number 2, and dated it August 1830. It is the missing second volume of a series of six…

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