There are those who like to dismiss her as a romance writer, but she was much more than that.
Other fans have banded together to celebrate the birthday in a big way. Bloggers and writers are hosting Austen's Birthday Soiree, an online "blog hop" that will offer readings and a look at Jane's life and times.
You can visit any of the 32 blogs to win prizes like books about Jane or DVDs of movies inspired by her books.
More information, and a full list of participants, can be found at the Austenprose blog.
Just click here.