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Thomas Hardy

Best known perhaps as a novelist. Born near Dorchester in 1840. His father was a stone mason but also played Fiddle and taught Thomas the instrument and many Dorset tunes for Country Dance.

Village bands and local music feature in Hardy's novels and reflect the times - replacing the village wait or band in the Church with a new Harmonium for example in Under the Greewood Tree.

There is a collection of manuscripts from the family containing tunes and dances.