Wednesday, June 24, 2009
The Three Cups Inn at Lyme Regis - there have been two!
There is an article in the Times today which tells of a young boy's attempt to save the Three Cups Inn in Lyme Regis - pictured left. Thank you Laurel Ann of Austenprose for the alert! Although the article states that Jane Austen stayed here, there was in fact another earlier Three Cups Inn which was further down Broad Street - the original building was burnt down in 1844 and then re-built in its present position according to the Austen expert and author Maggie Lane. As Jane died in 1817 she couldn't have stayed at the present inn. I have seen a print of the original position of the Three Cups Inn when I was drawing the map for Maggie Lane's book, Jane Austen and Lyme Regis and this was clearly used as inspiration for Philip Gough's illustration below. The Three Cups is the yellow building on the left. It is thought this was also most likely to have been the inspiration for the inn in which the party from Uppercross stayed when they visited Lyme.
From Jane Austen's Persuasion:
After securing accommodations, and ordering a dinner at one of the inns, the next thing to be done was unquestionably to walk directly down to the sea. They were come too late in the year for any amusement or variety which Lyme as a public place, might offer. The rooms were shut up, the lodgers almost all gone, scarcely any family but of the residents left; and as there is nothing to admire in the buildings themselves, the remarkable situation of the town, the principal street almost hurrying into the water, the walk to the Cobb, skirting round the pleasant little bay, which in the season is animated with bathing-machines and company; the Cobb itself, its old wonders and new improvements, with the very beautiful line of cliffs stretching out to the east of the town, are what the stranger's eye will seek...