Greenwood

I thought for some reason the term Greenwood referred to the ancient forests of Britain, and implied  a mythological location which maybe could only be glimpsed as an echo of a past time when the land was covered in trees. I think I must have imagined it because I can find no trace of it; Thomas Hardy wrote a book ‘Under the Greenwood Tree’, Greenwood the Great is another name for Mirkwood in ‘Lord of the Rings’, but Greenwood, or the Greenwood, doesn’t seem to exist.

Hardy published his novel, his second in 1872 and took the title from a song in Shakespeare’s As You Like It, ‘Under the greenwood tree, Who loves to lie with me, And turn his merry note, Unto the sweet bird’s throat, Come hither, come hither, come hither, Here shall he see no enemy, But winter and rough weather,’.

J.R.R. Tolkien’s Mirkwood was an archetypal British deciduous broad-leaved forest where the elves lived.

Green wood, is timber which hasn’t been seasoned, it can be used for a particular sort of furniture and tool making, where the ‘greenness’ of the wood is essential in the process of making the items. Greenwood can also be a surname, and there are many places called Greenwood, one in Australia, six in Canada, nearly thirty-five in the USA, and various companies, schools, businesses, and even a cemetery and an observatory called Greenwood.

Maybe I should write about the Greenwood; in many of my novels there is an area of ancient forest and woodland called Camel Wood… maybe that is part of the greenwood… I must think about this!

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