Writing verse was a popular pastime for many households in the eighteenth century, and many of the Austens enjoyed composing riddles, charades and verses for family amusement.

Poetry can often be seen as rather difficult and serious, but the Austen family verses were often light and funny, inspired by the commonplaces of daily existence and domestic life.

In 1807 the Austen family undertook a writing challenge of their own: Mrs Austen, Cassandra, Jane and their sister-in-law Elizabeth each composed a poem made up exclusively of lines rhyming with the word ‘rose’.

In celebration of our Chawton Cottage rose, we ask you to do the same.

Your poem can be in any style you choose; it does not need to be a rhyming poem, but it must include at least one pair of lines that rhyme with ‘rose’.

Word limit: no more than 30 lines.