Last year, Kelly Clarkson put up $237,000 dollars to buy Jane Austen's ring at auction. But if you think that's absurd, hold on to your hats, because Austen's fans across the pond are trying to raise enough money to keep it from leaving the motherland. The Jane Austen House Museum revealed today that they've collected two-thirds the cash needed to buy the ring back from America's favorite American Idol winner.
As of now, Clarkson is wearing a replica of the ring. The real thing is still in Hampshire, England — Britain blocked the export of the heirloom in hopes that a countryman or woman would buy it back. Now, it would seem, they're getting their way.
This might seem like a lot of fuss over a dead person's jewelry, but as Jane Austen supporters, we'd like to think she'd be quite a bit above the snobbery that her more modern fans seem to have adopted regarding this issue. To that end, we've collected a few quotes from the queen of class herself, in an effort to make Kelly feel better:
"Selfishness must always be forgiven you know, because there is no hope of a cure." — Mansfield Park
"What have wealth or grandeur to do with happiness?" — Sense and Sensibility
"For what do we live, but to make sport for our neighbors and laugh at them in our turn?" —Pride and Prejudice
"A large income is the best recipe for happiness I ever heard of." — Mansield Park
In other words, Kelly, just keep the cash and forget the haters. Jane's got your back.