Born in 1840, Thomas Hardy is one of the nation's best-known novelists. The author of such classics as FAR FROM THE MADDING CROWD, TESS OF THE D'URBERVILLES and JUDE THE OBSCURE, Hardy is renowned for his novels set in the Wessex landscape.
Patricia Hodge trained at LAMDA, winning the Eveline Evans Award. Theatre work ranges from Benefactors, Summerfolk, and Noises Off, to As You Like It, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie and His Dark Materials. Television work includes Rumpole of the Bailey and The Life and Loves of a She Devil. Film appearances include Betrayal, co-starring with Jeremy Irons and Ben Kingsley.
Little is known about the poet Homer but he is thought to have composed the Iliad in the second half of the eight century BC and according to tradition lived on the island of Chios in the east Aegean.