The maiden name of the poet's mother was Mary Arden, and this name, that of an ancient county family, survives in the district north-west of Stratford, the Forest of Arden, though the true forest character is long lost.
The valley is always broad, and especially from Warwick downward, through the Vale of Evesham, the scenery is very beautiful, the rich valley being flanked by the bold Cotteswold Hills on the south and by the wooded slopes of the Arden district of Warwickshire on the north.
He was one of the foremost foes of Piers, who had styled him "the black cur of Arden," and with whose death he was closely connected.
He now put the Arthurian legends aside fiat a time, and devoted himself to the composition, in 1862, of "Enoch Arden," which, however, did not appear until 1864, and then in a volume which also contained "Sea Dreams," "Aylmer's Field" and, above all, "The Northern Farmer," the first and finest of Tennyson's remarkable studies in dialect_ In April of this year Garibaldi visited Farringford; in February 1865 Tennyson's mother died at Hampstead in her eighty-fifth year; in the ensuing summer he travelled in Germany.
In the vicinity are New Hall, an interesting mansion of the 13th century, with a hall of the 16th, used as a boys' school; and Peddimore Hall, a moated mansion of the ancient family of Arden, of which there are slight remains.
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