The Sow-and-Acorn Inn, Evershead

Acorn Inn, Evershott — supposedly the original of The Sow-and-Acorn Inn, Evershead, in Hardy's A Group of Noble Dames. Source of photograph: Anniversary Edition of the Wessex Novels, 1920, Frontispiece. Scanned image (2002) by Philip V. Allingham; text by Allingham and George P. Landow. [You may use this image without prior permission for any scholarly or educational purpose as long as you (1) credit the person who scanned the image and (2) link your document to this URL.]

According to the editors, many of whose remarks seem based on Thomas Hardy's Wessex (1913) by Herman Lea,

The Sow-and-Acorn was obviously sketched from the present 'Acorn Inn' at Evershot. This is the village to which Tupcombe [in "An Indiscretion in the Life of an Heiress"] rides to learn the news of Betty, and, upon his arrival, he "took a seat in the chimney-corner of the Sow-and- Acorn."

Although the village of Evershot is chiefly associated with Tess of the D'Urbervilles, it plays a prominent role as a backdrop in both "The First Countess of Wessex" and "Interlopers at the Knap." Nearby Melbury Park Hardy calls "King's Hintock Park" in the former short story, the first framed tale in A Group of Noble Dames, originally published in December 1889 in Harper's New Monthly Magazine. In the periodical version, C. S. Reinhart has provided an illustration with Tupcombe sitting with his cronies in a settle at the Sown-and-Acorn, the village public-house.


Hardy, Thomas. "The Wessex Novels II. Romances and Fantasies: The Well-Beloved & A Group of Noble Dames. "Anniversary Edition of the Wessex Novels." Vol 13. New York & London: Harper & Brothers, 1920. This edition derives in part from previous editions and the photographs of 1912.

Last modified 19 April 2024