This map plots the settings and references in Tess Of The D'Urbervilles

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Page 342. " It is Stonehenge! "
Creative Commons AttributionStonehenge - Credit: Danny Sullivan

A Bronze Age earthwork and stone circle created over a period of 2,000 years, Stonehenge is thought to have had mystical or religious significance for the ancient Britons. It is still held to be a sacred site by modern-day druids. 


The henge (ring bank and ditch) clearly has great imaginative potency for Hardy, as for once he drops his convention of fictionalizing west-country locations and sets a scene in a real-life place. This has a powerful effect, making the reader feel that Angel and Tess's blissful, dream-like escape from reality must be coming to an end as reality catches up with them.