In the days of high-waisted and muslin-gowned women, when the vast amount of soldiering going on in the country was a cause of much trembling to the sex, there lived in a village near the Wessex coast two ladies of good report, though unfortunately of limited means.
The candle held by his father shed its wavring light upon John's face and uniform as with a farewell smile he turned on the door-stone, backed by the black night; and in another moment he had plunged into the darkness, the ring of his smart step dying away upon the bridge as he joined his companions-in-arms, and went off to blow his trumpet till silenced for ever upon one of the bloody battle-fields of Spain.
A romantic story from Thomas Hardy set in the Napoleionic wars. Anne Garland is courted by three suiters: John Loveday (the Trumpet-Major of the title), his brother Robert and Festus Derriman, the son of a squire. The full title of the book is: The Trumpet-Major John Loveday, a Soldier in the War with Buonaparte, and Robert His Brother, First Mate in the Merchant Service.… (more)