The farm lay in a hollow among the Somersetshire hills,
an old-fashioned stone house, surrounded by barns and outhouses.
Over the doorway the date when it was built had been carved, 1673,
and the house, grey and weather-beaten, looked as much
a part of the landscape as the trees that surrounded it.
An avenue of splendid elms led from the road to the garden.
The people who lived here were as stolid, sturdy and unpretentious as the house.
Their only boast was that ever since the house was built from
father to son they had been born and died in it.
For three hundred years they had farmed the surrounding land.
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