Thomas Hardy: Jude the Obscure

(3068 words)

First Publication and Reception

A hauntingly intense tale of thwarted human aspiration in Victorian England, Jude the Obscure was Thomas Hardy’s last novel. First serialised in Harper’s Magazine in December 1894-November 1895, having been some four years in the making and initially bearing various provisional titles – “The Simpletons / Hearts Insurgent / A Dreamer” –, it became one of the first Victorian novels to be published in one volume (as Jude the Obscure, November 1895, post-dated 1896), rather than the customary triple-decker. The decision to publish the book in one volume signals a move away from the circulating library (q.v.) and towards a rather more sophisticated, liberal-minded …

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Schneider, Ana-Karina. "Jude the Obscure". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 24 March 2011
[, accessed 29 September 2016.]