SY6990 : Thomas Hardy Locations, Ten Hatches Weir

taken 7 years ago, near to Dorchester, Dorset, Great Britain

Thomas Hardy Locations, Ten Hatches Weir
Thomas Hardy Locations, Ten Hatches Weir
This weir appears in Hardy's poem the Curate's Kindness. It is on the River Frome in the very north east of the square where the river splits into two branches and the hatches (sluice gates) were used to divert water from one branch to the other for use in the water meadows. Five hatches were on one branch of the river and five on the other. Only five of the sluices remain in the foreground, the other five having been removed at some time. In the background can be seen the backs of the houses in London Rd, Dorchester.

Pummery is Hardy's name for Poundbury.


Title: The Curate's Kindness
Author: Thomas Hardy

A WORKHOUSE IRONY



I

I thought they'd be strangers aroun' me,
But she's to be there!
Let me jump out o' waggon and go back and drown me
At Pummery or Ten-Hatches Weir.

II

I thought: "Well, I've come to the Union -
The workhouse at last -
After honest hard work all the week, and Communion
O' Zundays, these fifty years past.

III

"'Tis hard; but," I thought, "never mind it:
There's gain in the end:
And when I get used to the place I shall find it
A home, and may find there a friend.

IV

"Life there will be better than t'other.
For peace is assured.
THE MEN IN ONE WING AND THEIR WIVES IN ANOTHER
Is strictly the rule of the Board."

V

Just then one young Pa'son arriving
Steps up out of breath
To the side o' the waggon wherein we were driving
To Union; and calls out and saith:

VI

"Old folks, that harsh order is altered,
Be not sick of heart!
The Guardians they poohed and they pished and they paltered
When urged not to keep you apart.

VII

"'It is wrong,' I maintained, 'to divide them,
Near forty years wed.'
'Very well, sir. We promise, then, they shall abide them
In one wing together,' they said."

VIII

Then I sank--knew 'twas quite a foredone thing
That misery should be
To the end! . . . To get freed of her there was the one thing
Had made the change welcome to me.

IX

To go there was ending but badly;
'Twas shame and 'twas pain;
"But anyhow," thought I, "thereby I shall gladly
Get free of this forty years' chain."

X

I thought they'd be strangers aroun' me,
But she's to be there!
Let me jump out o' waggon and go back and drown me
At Pummery or Ten-Hatches Weir.

This is also the place in The Mayor of Casterbridge where Henchard considers committing suicide but is stopped by the appearance of an apparition which is his own double.
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SY6990, 939 images   (more nearby )
Photographer
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Date Taken
Sunday, 24 July, 2011   (more nearby)
Submitted
Tuesday, 16 August, 2011
Category
Sluice Gates   (more nearby)
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SY 6997 9095 [10m precision]
WGS84: 50:43.0437N 2:25.6042W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SY 6998 9095
View Direction
WEST (about 270 degrees)
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