19th Century Romantic Hero

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Consider the characters of Oak, Boldwood and Troyand their

relationship with Bathsheba. Which male best fits the 19th century

tradition of the 'Romantic Hero'?

A romantic hero is a person (usually a man) who is there to save the

day when you need them. They should have certain qualities like,

charm, bravery, intelligence, reliability, financial stability and

most importantly passion.

The novel 'Far From The Madding Crowd' by Thomas Hardy, fits the

stereo type of a classic Victorian novel. Bathsheba is the heroine in

need; there are also a string of problems for the characters to

overcome like Troy's involvement with Fanny, her death and the loss of

her baby to which Troy is the father. Rises and falls of fortune, for

example when Oak loses all his sheep and has to leave his farm; and

the happy ending to the story when Oak and Bathsheba get married.

However, the characters do no fit the stereo type of the Victorian

novel exactly. The idea of a romantic hero is that he is a good

character without any real faults, in this novel it is rather unclear

as to who is the romantic hero until towards the end of the book. The

heroine is meant to go through bad incidents with no fault of her own

but Bathsheba is not innocent, you can see this when Boldwood falls in

love with her because she has sent him a valentines card with 'Marry

Me' stamped on the back. It was her fault for misleading Boldwood in

the first place; also, the heroine is traditionally a weak person

whereas Bathsheba is very strong.

Troy was first mentioned in the novel as being the lover of Fanny, a

work maid from Bathsheba's farm. He starts off a being the

stereotypical romantic hero, he is dashing and attractive in a

soldiers uniform! He is a sergeant in the army and is very highly

looked upon. As the story progresses you can see that Troy is not

quite the person that he appears to be. He is very untrustworthy and

unreliable, not qualities associated with a romantic hero. When he

meets Bathsheba on the path for the first time he is very blunt and

quite rude. Some good quotes from the book that describe Troy are "He

was moderately truthful towards men, but to women he lied like a

Cretan" and "He could in this way be one thing and seem another; for

instance, he could speak of love and think of dinner; call on the

husband to look at the wife; be eager to pay and intend to owe." These
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