Under the Greenwood Tree: Hardy

Hardy's second published novel, Under the Greenwood Tree or The Mellstock Quire (A Rural Painting Of the Dutch School), was published in 1872 by Tinsley Brothers in two volumes bound in green cloth.

Hardy constructed the novel, which he set in Mellstock (a fictional town modelled on Hardy's native Higher Bockhampton and Stinsford), upon two parallel plots: the story of the Mellstock church choir, whose members consist of such colourful characters as the tranter, the shoemaker and the simpleton, and a romantic love story between young Dick Dewy, an honest yeoman and a member of the Mellstock church choir, and the pretty and flirtatious Fancy Day, a village schoolmistress and daughter of Geoffrey Day, a gamekeeper.