A Memoir of Jane Austen is a biography of the velist Jane Austen (1775-1817) published in 1869 by her nephew James Edward Austen Leigh. A family project, the biography was written by James Edward Austen Leigh but owed much to the recollections of Jane Austen's many relatives. However, it was the decisions of her close friend and sister, Cassandra Austen, to destroy many of Jane's letters after her death that shaped the material available for the biography. The Memoir introduced the public to the works of Jane Austen, generating interest in vels which only a literary elite had read up until that point. It remained the primary biographical work on the author for over half a century.