Topic : Tess of the d’Urbervilles

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Tess of the d’Urbervilles is a notable literary work by Thomas Hardy. A complete discussion of this literary work is given, which will help you enhance your literary skills and prepare for the exam. Read the main text, key info, Summary, Themes, Characters, Literary Devices, Quotations, Notes, to various questions of Tess of the d’Urbervilles.

main text

Phase the First: The Maiden Chapter I On an evening in the latter part of May a middle-aged man was walking homeward from Shaston to the village of Marlott, in the adjoining Vale of Blakemore, or Blackmoor. The pair of legs that carried him were rickety, and there was a bias in his gait which inclined him somewhat to the left of a straight line. He occasionally gave a smart nod, as if in confirmation of some opinion, though he was not thinking of anything in particular. An empty egg-basket was slung upon his arm, the nap of his hat [...]

key facts

  • Author: Thomas Hardy (1840-1928)
  • Title of the Author:  The Master of Rural Realism and Tragic Tales
  • Written Date: 1891
  • Published Date: 1891


We will explore the summary of Tess of the d'Urbervilles with the help of the 6 points. Let us know the summary.

Tess' Meeting with Angel Clare

Tess of the d'Urbervilles lives in the rural village of Marlott in southwest England. She first appears performing the May Day dance, exchanging a meaningful glance with a young man named Angel Clare. Tess's family is very poor, but her father learns he is descended from the d'Urbervilles, one of England's oldest, noblest families.


Tess of the d’Urbervilles is a famous novel by Thomas Hardy. In this section, we are going to know several themes of the novel.

Social Class and Inequality

Thomas Hardy's Tess of the d'Urbervilles explores the harsh consequences of social class and gender in Victorian England. Tess, a poor and vulnerable woman, becomes a victim of society's prejudices and patriarchal values, leading to her tragic downfall. The novel highlights the injustices and inequalities of the time.


Tess of the d’Urbervilles is a famous novel by Thomas Hardy. In this section, we will know some crucial characters of the novel. These characters will help you to understand the story of the novel.

Tess Durbeyfield

The protagonist of the novel. She is a beautiful, innocent young woman. She suffers from the result of others' actions around her. She is a strong-willed woman but cannot escape her tragic fate. She is a pure and virtuous country girl whose life is tragic when her family discovers they are descendants of the noble D'Urbervilles. Naive and trusting, she becomes the victim of Alec d'Urberville's manipulative schemes. The societal expectations of Victorian England mar her beauty and innocence. It led to her downfall. Despite her trials, she remains resilient and tries to navigate her way through a world that constantly conspires against her.

literary devices

Literary devices are essential parts of a literary work. In this section, we will focus on several important symbols of the novel Tess of the d’Urbervilles.


  • D'Urberville Name: Symbolizes false aristocracy and social aspirations.
  • White: Represents Tess's innocence and purity.
  • Red: Symbolizes passion, sensuality, and violence.
  • Death of Prince: Symbolizes the misfortune of Tess' family.


In this section, we will focus on the quotes of the novel Tess of the d’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy. Let me mention these quotes and explanations.

Don't you really know, Durbeyfield, that you are the lineal representative of the ancient and knightly family of the d'Urbervilles ... ?

-Parson Tringham, Phase the First, Chapter 1

Parson Tringham informs John Durbeyfield of his noble lineage by tracing his ancestry to the prestigious d'Urberville family. This revelation impacts Durbeyfield as he learns about his aristocratic heritage. It contrasts his current modest living. The mention of being the "lineal representative" emphasizes Durbeyfield's direct connection to this ancient and knightly lineage.