Thomas Hardy

(2 June 1840 – 11 January 1928 / Dorchester / England)

Thomas Hardy
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Thomas Hardy was born June 2, 1840, in the village of Upper Bockhampton, located in Southwestern England. His father was a stone mason and a violinist. His mother enjoyed reading and relating all the folk songs and legends of the region. Between his parents, Hardy gained all the interests that would appear in his novels and his own life: his love for architecture and music, his interest in the lifestyles of the country folk, and his passion for all sorts of literature.

At the age of eight, Hardy began to attend Julia Martin's school in Bockhampton. However, most of his education came from the books he found in Dorchester, the nearby town. He learned French, German, and Latin by ... more »

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Thomas Hardy Quotations

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  • ''And yet to every bad there is a worse.''
    Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), British novelist, poet. The Woodlanders, ch. 34 (1887).
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  • ''And ghosts then keep their distance; and I know some liberty.''
    Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), British novelist, poet. Wessex Heights (l. 32). . . The Complete Poems of Thomas Hardy. James Gibson, ed. (1978) Macmill...
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  • ''It is difficult for a woman to define her feelings in language which is chiefly made by men to express theirs.''
    Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), British novelist, poet. Bathsheba, in Far from the Madding Crowd, ch. 51 (1874).
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  • ''The value of old age depends upon the person who reaches it. To some men of early performance it is useless. To others, who are late to develop, it just enables them to finish the job.''
    Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), British novelist, poet. "Birthday Notes," quoted in Florence Emily Hardy, The Later Years of Thomas Hardy, ch. 17 (1930).
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  • ''Of course poets have morals and manners of their own, and custom is no argument with them.''
    Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), British novelist, poet. Faith, in The Hand of Ethelberta, ch. 2 (1875).
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Best Poem of Thomas Hardy

I Need Not Go

I need not go
Through sleet and snow
To where I know
She waits for me;
She will wait me there
Till I find it fair,
And have time to spare
From company.

When I've overgot
The world somewhat,
When things cost not
Such stress and strain,
Is soon enough
By cypress sough
To tell my Love
I am come again.

And if some day,
When none cries nay,
I still delay
To seek her side,
(Though ample measure
Of fitting leisure
Await my pleasure)
She will not chide.

What--not upbraid me
That I delayed ...

Read the full of I Need Not Go