Poems of the Past and Present
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Thomas Hardy (1840-1928) was born in Dorset, England, to a working-class family who instilled the value of education in their young son from his earliest years. After completing his formal schooling, Hardy began work as an architect’s apprentice at the age of sixteen. He continued his apprenticeship for a few years, eventually leaving it to attend King’s College, London. Although Hardy gained recognition for his work in school, he still felt that another career was calling him and so returned to Dorset to become a writer. Hardy turned out a number of poems and novels in the years to come, among them Tess of the D’Urbervilles, Jude the Obscure, and Far From the Madding Crowd. Hardy’s writing drew both praise and criticism from his readers, with some of them applauding his brutally honest depictions of rural life and modern values, and others decrying his departure from traditionally conservative Victorian literature. Known for his brooding meditations on human desires and destinies, Thomas Hardy’s works remain some of the most highly regarded in English literature.Back to top
Opening Lines (Experimental)
Whereby all life is stirred:
The norm of every royal-reckoned attribute,"
No mortal knew or heard.
And the world's heart was won . . .
Till ripening years have run.
27th January ...
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