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A Wife In London Summary & Analysis
by Thomas Hardy

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"A Wife in London" is a bleak anti-war poem by the English poet Thomas Hardy. It was composed two months after the start of the Boer War (1899), a brutal conflict between the British Empire, the South African Republic, and the Orange Free State. Around this time, one prominent newspaper denounced Hardy as a pacifist. The poem focuses on a woman who receives the tragic news of her husband's death in the war. Then, to make matters worse, a letter from the husband himself arrives, talking optimistically about future plans. Hardy made his name as a novelist, writing books such as Jude the Obscure and Tess of the D'Urbervilles, but he focused on poetry later on in his career.

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