First Three Books
1870–1873: Aet. 30–33
He must when in London have obtained from Tinsley the MS. of Desperate Remedies; for during the autumn of this year 1870 there were passing between him and Miss Gifford chapters of the story for her to make a fair copy of, the original MS. having been interlined and altered, so that it may have suffered, he thought, in the eyes of a publisher’s reader by being difficult to read. He meanwhile wrote the three or four remaining chapters, and the novel — this time finished “was packed off to Tinsley in December. However, a minute fact seems to suggest that Hardy was far from being in bright spirits about this book and his future at this time. On the margin of his copy of Hamlet the following passage is marked with the date, ‘December 15, 1870’:
‘Thou wouldst not think how ill all’s here about my heart: but it is no matter!’
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© Macmillan & Co Ltd 1962