Far from the Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy

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„Weakness is doubly weak by being new”.

Bathsheba Everdeen has everything that a young woman should have: beauty, charm, and even a fortune inherited from her late uncle. Without a doubt, the advantages of the lady do not go unnoticed by men, who sees not only Miss Everdeen’s feminine beauty but also her diligence and the eagerness to take care of the farm. Not after a long time does she receive the proposal of the marriage. However, Farmer Oak is rejected. Days are passing and even more bachelors start to appear on the horizon.

„Silence has sometimes a remarkable power of showing itself as the disembodied soul of feeling wandering without its carcase, and it is then more impressive than speech. In the same way to say a little is often to tell more than to say”.

Because of the dreadful accident, Gabriel Oak loses his farm and from a prosperous farmer, he becomes a poor shepherd. Due to the coincidence, he starts to work on the farm managed by Miss Everdeen and his plans concerning marrying Bathsheba come to nothing. He can only watch how Bathsheba’s life changes into a winding path filled with doubt and indecisiveness. Nobody is able to predict what kind of burning passion may influence Miss Everdene concerning the choice of the husband. Is it kindness and caution towards rich Mr. Boldwood or untamed infatuation to sergeant Troy?

„So greatly are people’s ideas of probability a mere sense that precedent will repeat itself”.

Far from the Madding Crowd is a wonderful novel which talks about human desires, errors, and suffering. Thomas Hardy presented the vision of a haughty young woman, whose own feelings are a mystery even for herself. There are some moments of deep despondency in which the road taken by the heroine seems to be the source of devastating consequences. Hardy’s style can be easily compared to Jane Austen’s style, nevertheless, the description of the feast seems to remind Cormac McCarthy’s aesthetics.

Author: Katarzyna Anita Piotrowska
Translation: Dorota Osińska