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About the book
  • Published: 5 September 2006
  • ISBN: 9780451530271
  • Imprint: Signet
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $11.99

Tess Of The D'urbervilles

Penguin English Library




With its sensitive depiction of a wronged 'pure woman' and its powerful criticism of Victorian sexual hypocrisy, Tess of the D'Urbervilles shocked readers on publication. 

An intimate portrait of a woman, one of literature's most admirable and tragic heroines...

Tess Durbeyfield knows what it is to work hard and expect little. But her life is about to veer from the path trod by her mother and grandmother. When her ne’er-do-well father learns that his family is the last of a long noble line, the d’Urbervilles, he sends Tess on a journey to meet her supposed kin—a journey that will see her victimized by lust, poverty, and hypocrisy. Shaped by an acute sense of social injustice and by a vision of human fate cosmic in scope, her story is a singular blending of harsh realism and poignant beauty. Thomas Hardy created in Tess not a standard Victorian heroine but a woman whose intense vitality shines against the bleak backdrop of a dying way of life. The novel shocked contemporary readers with its honesty and remains a timeless commentary on the human condition.

With an Introduction by Marcelle Clements 

  • Pub date: 5 September 2006
  • ISBN: 9780451530271
  • Imprint: Signet
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 432
  • RRP: $11.99

About the Author

Thomas Hardy

Thomas Hardy was born on 2 June 1840. His father was a stonemason. He was brought up near Dorchester and trained as an architect. In 1868 his work took him to St Juliot's church in Cornwall where he met his wife-to-be, Emma. His first novel, The Poor Man and the Lady, was rejected by publishers but Desperate Remedies was published in 1871 and this was rapidly followed by Under the Greenwood Tree (1872), A Pair of Blue Eyes (1873) and Far from the Madding Crowd (1874). He also wrote many other novels, poems and short stories. Tess of the D'Urbervilles was published in 1891. His final novel was Jude the Obscure (1895). Hardy was awarded the Order of Merit in 1920 and the gold medal of the Royal Society of Literature in 1912. His wife died in 1912 and he later married his secretary. Thomas Hardy died 11 January 1928.

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Praise for Tess Of The D'urbervilles

““What a commonplace genius he has; or a genius for the commonplace—I don’t know which.”—D. H. Lawrence  “The greatest tragic writer among English novelists.”—Virginia Woolf ”


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