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Record 26563

Reading Experience:

From the Commonplace Book of Mrs Austen of Ensbury: Transcription of '“On a Cornelian Heart that was broken" - Lord Byron', beginning 'Ill-fated Heart! and can it be,/ That thou should'st thus be rent in twain?'
Century: 1800-1849, 1850-1899
Date: Between 1 Jan 1814 and 18 Apr 1884
Country: England
Time: n/a
Place: n/a
Type of Experience (Reader):
silent aloud unknown
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown
Type of Experience (Listener):
solitary in company unknown
single serial unknown

Reader/Listener/Reading Group:

Reader:Catherine Austen
Age Adult (18-100+)
Gender Female
Date of Birth 1794
Socio-economic group: Clergy (includes all denominations)
Occupation: clergyman's wife
Religion: Anglican
Country of origin: England
Country of experience: England
Listeners present if any:
(e.g. family, servants, friends, workmates)
Additional comments: n/a


Text Being Read:

Author: George Gordon, Lord Byron
Title: 'On a Cornelian Heart which was broken'
Genre: Poetry
Form of Text: Unknown
Publication details: n/a
Provenance: unknown


Source Information:

Record ID: 26563  
  Source - Manuscript
  Author: Mrs [Catherine] Austen
  Title: Commonplace Book
  Location: Private Collection
  Call no: n/a
  Page/folio: 3

Citation: Mrs [Catherine] Austen, Commonplace Book Private Collection, p. n/a, p. 3,, accessed: 21 June 2024

Additional comments:

Mrs Austen's exact birthdate is not known. From her gravestone: 'Died April 18th 1884 in her 90th year'. This suggests she was born in 1794. The commonplace book contains references to events in 1816 and 1835, and several poems that refer to the Battle of Waterloo (1815). Since the hand is that of an adult, and the references to Waterloo appear early in the volume, but not at the very start, we have dated the reading experiences between 1814 and 1884, although this dating is tentative and it is likely that the reading experiences happened within a much narrower timeframe. For further information and permission to quote this source, contact the Reading Experience Database (



Reading Experience Database version 2.0.  Page updated: 27th Apr 2016  3:15pm (GMT)