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The Mayor of Casterbridge - Thomas Hardy

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The Mayor of Casterbridge

by Thomas Hardy



1.


One evening of late summer, before the nineteenth century
had reached one-third of its span, a young man and woman,
the latter carrying a child, were approaching the large
village of Weydon-Priors, in Upper Wessex, on foot.  They
were plainly but not ill clad, though the thick hoar of dust
which had accumulated on their shoes and garments from an
obviously long journey lent a disadvantageous shabbiness to
their appearance just now.

The man was of fine figure, swarthy, and stern in aspect;
and he showed in profile a facial angle so slightly inclined
as to be almost perpendicular.  He wore a short jacket of
brown corduroy, newer than the remainder of his suit, which
was a fustian waistcoat with white horn buttons, breeches of
the same, tanned leggings, and a straw hat overlaid with
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