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Previous programmes and meetings

Lydia Byam’s Journal: Exotic Plants, Jane Austen and Slavery

Lydia Byam was an artist, born on the Caribbean island of Antigua in 1768. Her paintings of fruit and exotic plants are now the treasured possessions of a few libraries worldwide. She is featured online, but as the wrong Lydia Byam! Gabrielle Leese’s quest to uncover the real story of her 3x great-grandmother began with the discovery of Lydia’s journal, which covers her voyages across the Atlantic, life on a slave plantation and her return to England after her father’s death.  Then Gabrielle made some exciting discoveries about aristocratic scandals and a fascinating connection with Jane Austen and her novel Persuasion!

 


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