“Darkness and silence ruled everywhere around. Above them rose the primeval yews and oaks of The Chase, in which there poised gentle roosting birds in their last nap; and about them stole the hopping rabbits and hares. But, might some say, where was Tess’s guardian angel? where was the providence of her simple faith? Perhaps, like that other god of whom the ironical Tishbite spoke, he was talking, or he was pursuing, or he was in a journey, or he was sleeping and not to be awaked.
Why it was that upon this beautiful feminine tissue, sensitive as gossamer, and practically blank as snow as yet, there should have been traced such a coarse pattern as it was doomed to receive; why so often the coarse appropriates the finer thus, the wrong man the woman, the wrong woman the man, many thousand years of analytical philosophy have failed to explain to our sense of order. One may, indeed, admit the possibility of a retribution lurking in the present catastrophe. Doubtless some of Tess d’Urberville’s mailed ancestors rollicking home from a fray had dealt the same measure even more ruthlessly towards peasant girls of their time. But though to visit the sins of the fathers upon the children may be a morality good enough for divinities, it is scorned by average human nature; and it therefore does not mend the matter.
As Tess’s own people down in those retreats are never tired of saying among each other in their fatalistic way: “It was to be.” There lay the pity of it. An immeasurable social chasm was to divide our heroine’s personality thereafter from that previous self of hers who stepped from her mother’s door to try her fortune at Trantridge poultry-farm.”
Upcoming exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery about actresses in the 17 and 18th Centuries.
Looks set to be a corker.
Emma Hamilton, regency beauty and all round interesting lady
Foundling Voices features the experiences of 74 former foundlings whose memories of their childhoods in the first half of the 20th century are graphically preserved in audio interviews, photographs and film. Tales of family separation, the stigma of illegitimacy, a spartan school education, wartime heroism and the search for birth mothers are all part of this rich social history.
DC Harry Batt from Dick and Dom in da Bungalow, perhaps the best Saturday morning TV show ever.
Charles II - King of Bling
One day I will have one of these again. One day soon.