Under the Greenwood Tree

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Penguin UK, Nov 29, 2012 - Fiction - 224 pages
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'At sight of him had the pink of her cheeks increased, lessened, or did it continue to cover its normal area of ground? It was a question meditated several hundreds of times by her visitor in after-hours - the meditation, after wearying involutions, always ending in one way, that it was impossible to say'

The arrival of two newcomers in the quiet village of Mellstock arouses a bitter feud and leaves a convoluted love affair in its wake. While the Reverend Maybold creates a furore among the village's musicians with his decision to abolish the church's traditional 'string choir' and replace it with a modern mechanical organ, the new schoolteacher, Fancy Day, causes an upheaval of a more romantic nature, winning the hearts of three very different men - a local farmer, a church musician and Maybold himself. Under the Greenwood Tree follows the ensuing maze of intrigue and passion with gentle humour and sympathy, deftly evoking the richness of village life, yet tinged with melancholy for a rural world that Hardy saw fast disappearing.

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Contents

UNDER THE GREENWOOD TREE
WINTER
Mellstocklane
The Tranters
The Assembled Choir
Going the Rounds
The Listeners
Christmas Morning
Returning Homeward
Yalbury Wood and the Keepers House
Dick Makes Himself Useful
Dick Meets His Father
SUMMER
Driving out ofBudmouth 2 Farther along the Road 3 A Confession 4 An Arrangement
Going Nutting
HoneyTaking and Afterwards

The Tranters Party
They Dance More Wildly
SPRING
Passing by the School
A Meeting oftheChoir 3 inthe Discussion 4 The Interview with the Vicar
Fancy in the Rain
After 6 Into Temptation
The Knot
Under the Greenwood Tree
Copyright

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About the author (2012)

Thomas Hardy was born in Dorset in 1840 and became an apprentice architect at the age of sixteen. He spent his twenties in London, where he wrote his first poems. In 1867 Hardy returned to his native Dorset, whose rugged landscape was a great source of inspiration for his writing. Between 1871 and 1897 he wrote fourteen novels, including Tess of the D'Urbervilles and Jude the Obscure. This final work was received savagely; thereafter Hardy turned away from novels and spent the last thirty year of his life focusing on poetry. He died in 1928.

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