Monday, July 8, 2013

The Town of Bath

Yes, that Bath!  The one that pops up now and then in Jane Austen novels!


These pictures are actually from two years ago, when I was there with Tyler-Rose, and we ran to the Jane Austen Center and back in about thirty minutes.  My visit this year was *slightly* more leisurely. 

We literally took about three pictures in the gift shop and then ran out again.
So about Jane Austen...is there a quote for her hating Bath?   I'm not sure how accurate this is, but HERE is someone trying to answer this question...  Anyway. 

First, two things I wish I did but didn't:

1) The tour of Bath Abbey--they take you up into the rafters to see how the bells work!

2) Go to the Pump House for tea (I *think* this would have been really great!)--it's a little pricey, but it's where socialites gathered in Jane Austen's time.  And a good high tea never hurt anyone in England.  (I'll be sure to post some documentation of my Saturday Scones sometime so you can all drool over them. ;) )

I'm not sure how I feel about Bath myself.  I mean, the city really does double-coolness-duty:  It's a bit of a Jane Austen site, AND it has some of the best preserved Roman baths (hence the name of the town), which you can visit...

Inside the Roman baths.
Temple of the Celtic-Roman deity Sulis Minerva.

The main baths--water still bubbles up naturally.
 
My toes at the edge of the steamy water.

It also is home to the gorgeous Bath Abbey (the one with the bell tower tour I mentioned):




Bath is also known for its Georgian architecture.  Which puzzles me.  Because this is Georgian architecture:



Something about it is sort of understated in an orderly way.  And that may be how I feel about Bath in general.  Maybe it was too hyped up for me before I visited or something.  Or PERHAPS I need to go there sometime when I am not rushed. 

Walking with some friends, trying not to get rained on.
 Which is basically England in a nutshell.  

Georgian architecture just doesn't....I'm not in awe.

I like Gothic architecture.  Soaring spires and windows that arch up to the heavens. It is, therefore, a very good thing I'm living in Oxford.  As you shall soon see...

~

Also, if you feel like there was not enough Jane Austen content in this post, fear not!  I am going to try to make it to one of the nearby Austen locations while I'm here.  (Either her birthplace or the last house she lived in, I think...)

16 comments:

  1. I think it's seriously disgusting that they all used to share the communal bath waters to get rid of their "diseases." *shudders* But I'm super jealous that you're visiting Bath. I'd love to go there someday.

    And that last picture- that street you're on- it's in so many Jane Austen movies!!! *fangirling*

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    1. OH MY GOSH HOW DID I NOT REALIZE THAT? *freaking out*

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    2. It is. I think that is the one Anne Eliot jogs down in the new Persuasion.

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    3. *dies* *also considers going back to Bath*

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  2. Yeah, I'm not a huge fan of Georgian stuff. It's kinda... I don't know, blocky? The dreaming spires of Oxford are lovely. :)

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    1. My appreciation is increasing slowly... But I have to agree with you.

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  3. I loooooove Bath. If I could afford it, I would move there in a heartbeat! It's such a beautiful place.

    The Roman Baths are so inspiring, but I quite enjoy Thermae Spa too ;)

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  4. Oh my goodness! That is so awesome. I would love to go there myself. So gorgeous. :)

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  5. Ooh! You should look into the "Austen in August" thing that'll be going on over at The Book Rat.
    http://www.thebookrat.com/2013/06/austen-in-august-ii-invitation.html
    Bet they'd love to have a post all about your Big Jane Experience! :D

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  6. I agree with Miss Cole. I love Bath, and I'd love to live there. Such a beautiful, vibrant city!

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    1. I really don't think a tightly packed visit of three hours could do it any justice... *sigh* I guess I'll just have to return someday. ;)

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  7. Thanks for sharing your pictures! It's too bad you didn't have time for a longer visit. I can see why you'd prefer Gothic architecture to Georgian. I guess that's kind of like comparing a more wild and overgrown garden to one with nicely trimmed hedges and neat flower beds. Not that I've had the chance to visit England (someday!) but I'd have to agree.

    I'm looking forward to the pictures of your Saturday Scones. I love, love, love scones but haven't made them in a while. :)

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    1. As for the phenomenon of not cooking scones in a while...behold! Scone mixes of glory! https://stickyfingersbakeries.com/products/?products=premium-scone-mixes

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    2. AND the only reason I get up on Saturday mornings at college.

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  8. I visited Bath a long long looooong time ago, back when the Roman Baths were the cool thing for me, and I wouldn't have cared a jot about the Jane Austen connection. Three hours definitely isn't long enough. You need to plan day trips to places, Susan. :)

    Great pictures!

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