Thomas Hardy was considered the last of the great Victorians. Lived a long and seemingly happy life.
Most of Hardy's early work was poetry, but he had little success in selling his work, and so gradually turned to writing fiction.
Among his distinguished works are The Return of the Native, The Mayor of Caster Bridge and Far From the Madding Crowd.
Hardy's death in 1928 was an occasion of international mourning. His ashes were buried in Westminster Abbey, but in accordance with his wishes, his heart was removed and buried in his parish churchyard in Dorsetshire.