Emma is Austen's most technically accomplished novel. The full implications of its hidden plot are only revealed by a second reading. Presented here for the first time with the spelling and the punctuation of the first edition of 1816, the text allows readers to see the novel as Austen's contemporaries first encountered it. The volume includes comprehensive explanatory notes, an extensive critical introduction covering the context and publication history of the work, and a chronology of Austen's life as well. This edition is an indispensable resource for all scholars and readers of Austen.