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: Thomas Hardy (1840-1928), dreamed since his childhood of becoming a poet. Then he produced several popular works that cemented his reputation as a great novelist of the Victorian period, and earned him the admiration of later writers like D.H. Lawrence and Virginia Woolf. Hardy's stories are noted for their nuances of Romantic and Enlightenment thinking, particularly elements of the supernatural. In "Two on a Tower", a love story set against the background of the stellar universe, Hardy defied social norms of the day and shocked his readers. In what is today seen as the author's most important portrayal of love across physical and societal divides, the novel tells the story of Lady Constantine, a married, older, aristocratic, religious woman who falls in love with Swithin St. Cleeve, a young astronomer, single, lower class, and agnostic. Hardy's fascination with science and astronomy is clear in this romantic and whimsical novel.