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Thomas Hardy talks at Dorset County Museum

PUBLISHED: 15:22 22 April 2015 | UPDATED: 15:28 22 April 2015

Max Gate, former home of Thomas Hardy, was designed by the author in 1885 © National Trust Images / Andrew Butler

Max Gate, former home of Thomas Hardy, was designed by the author in 1885 © National Trust Images / Andrew Butler


A series of five illuminating talks about author Thomas Hardy and his work, taking place through the year at Dorset County Museum, will begin on Thursday 30 April at 7.30pm.

In the first talk, entitled What Tess meant to Hardy and why, Professor Keith Wilson of Ottawa University will explore Hardy’s fascination with the woman he himself created in his novel Tess of the D’Urbervilles. Other talks in the series include Professor Angelique Richardson on Hardy and the New Science (28 May), Professor Ann Heilman on Hardy, women and marriage (30 July) and Philip Mallet on Hardy, Wessex and the poetry of war (29 October).

Martin Stephen of the National Trust said: “Hardy was a complex man as well as a brilliant writer. He managed to pack so much into his life, and his writing is full of insights into human nature. It’s not surprising that there is still so much interest in him, and these talks will help to reveal what motivated the man, and get under the skin of the writer.”

The talks have been arranged by Exeter University, Dorset County Museum and the National Trust working in partnership under the banner of ‘Hardy Country’. All talks will be held at Dorset County Museum in Dorchester, at 7.30pm (doors open at 7pm). The talks are free of charge but a £3 donation towards to upkeep of the venue would be welcome.

For more information about Hardy Country and the talks at the Museum, visit the Hardy Country website



• The May 2015 issue of Dorset Magazine is a Thomas Hardy special! Get your copy at and keep an eye on


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