Program postuniversitar de conversie profesională pentru cadrele didactice din mediul rural

Specializarea LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ Forma de învăţământ ID - semestrul III

SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY BRITISH LITERATURE

Cornelia MACSINIUC

2006

Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural

LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ

Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature

Cornelia MACSINIUC

2006

© 2006

Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Nici o parte a acestei lucrări nu poate fi reprodusă fără acordul scris al Ministerului Educaţiei şi Cercetării

ISBN 10 973-0-04576-3; ISBN 13 978-973-0-04576-5.

Contents

CONTENTS
Introduction 1
1.1. 1.1.1. 1.1.2. 1.1.3. 1.1.4. 1.2. 1.3. 1.4. 1.4.1. 1.4.2. 1.4.3. 1.4.4. 1.5. 1.5.1. 1

The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background
Unit objectives The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The intellectual scene in the 17th and 18th centuries Reason and faith in the Age of the Enlightenment From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling The Enlightenment: an age of progress An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries The evolution of poetic forms Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries Jacobean tragedy Comedy in the early 17th century Drama during the Restoration period Sentimental drama and burlesque comedy in the 18th century The evolution of prose style Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading

9 10 10 10 11 12 12 13 15 16 17 18 19 19 21 21 23 24 24 28 30 30 31 32 32 33 33 35 36 37 37 38 39 40 41 43 43 44 46 46 47 48 i

2
2.1. 2.1.1. 2.1.2. 2.2. 2.2.1. 2.2.2. 2.2.3. 2.2.4. 2.2.5. 2.2.6. 2.2.7. 2.2.8. 2.2.9. 2.2.10. 2.2.11. 2.2.12. 2.3. 2.3.1.

The late Renaissance and the Baroque
Unit objectives The emergence of the baroque sensibility The late Renaissance: characteristics of the baroque sensibility Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry Shakespeare’s genius. His later plays The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s great tragedies Hamlet: a revenge play Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility in Hamlet Hamlet: the philosopher vs. the man of action King Lear: the madness of tragic grief To be or to seem: Othello Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience Shakespeare’s last plays The plot of The Tempest Major themes Symbols in The Tempest The play-metaphor The metaphysical poets Characteristics of metaphysical poetry

Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural

3. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 4 4. 4.2. 3.4. 3.7. 3. 2.4.5. The metaphysical conceit Themes in John Donne’s poetry Donne’s love poems Donne’s religious poems Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode Nature as “mystic book” in Marvell’s poetry The theme of love in Marvell’s poems Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 48 49 50 52 53 54 54 56 56 57 58 59 61 62 63 63 64 64 66 66 67 67 68 69 70 72 72 74 75 77 78 79 81 82 83 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 89 89 90 90 92 93 95 95 96 3 3. 3. 4.2.5.1.2. 3.4.4.2. 2.3. 3.1. 3. 3.3.3. 3.1.5.2. 4. 3.3. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 2. 4.1.1.2.3.5.2. 4. 3.3. 4.1. The Works of John Milton Unit objectives Milton. 2.4.2. 3.5.8.1. 4.4. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.1. 3.3.1.1.1. 2. the Christian humanist Milton’s early poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso Lycidas – a pastoral elegy Milton’s sonnets Sonnet VII Sonnet XVII Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Raphael’s warning to Adam The creation of the world The seduction of Eve The world after the Fall The heroes of Paradise Lost Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell Satan.4.Contents 2.2.6. 4. 3.2.3.4.3. 2. 3.4.6.5.1.5.2.3.3.1. ii The Restoration and the Augustan Age Unit objectives Restoration drama Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment Dominant forms in Restoration drama Restoration comedy and its character types William Congreve.2.3. 3.4.3. 3.2.

5.2.2.4.4.1. 5.2. or Virtue Rewarded Social hierarchy and the individual self Psychological realism and the epistolary technique Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The novel as comic romance The character of parson Adams Fielding’s conception of character in Joseph Andrews Fielding’s Augustanism Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The “Shandean” view of writing The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions Tristram Shandy as metafiction Summary Key words Glossary Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .7.8.1. 4.3. 4. 4.4.7.5.5. 4. 5.6.3. 5.1.4.2.4.1.4.Contents 4.6. The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Unit objectives Background and main concerns Novel and romance in the 18th century Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Typology of the novel in the 18th century Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Interpretations of Robinson Crusoe Defoe’s style Samuel Richardson’s contribution to the development of the novel The plot of Pamela.4.1.3.2. 4. 5.1. 4.2.2.6.3.3.3. 4.2. 4. 5.4.3. “The Spectator’s Club” Augustan satire John Dryden Alexander Pope Jonathan Swift The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia The fourth voyage.1.4. 5. 5. 5. 5.2.5.4.4. 4. 5. 5.4.2.3. 5.4. the frustrated idealist The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 96 98 98 98 100 103 103 103 105 105 107 107 110 110 111 111 113 115 116 117 118 118 118 119 121 123 123 124 125 127 128 128 129 130 132 132 133 134 134 135 136 136 136 137 139 139 140 142 142 143 iii 5 5.2. 5.4. 5. 5. 5.5.2.3. 5.2. 5.4.3.2. 5.3. 5.1.2. 5. 5.1. Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator.4.2. 5.3. 5.5.2.4.1.3. 4.4. 4. 4.4. Gulliver.3.4.

4.2.1.2. 6.4.4. 6.1.3. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.5. 6.1.1.2. 3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading Reader in seventeenth and eighteenth century literature Selected bibliography iv Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 6.4.4. the Romantic visionary The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Knowledge in the world of Experience The double vision in Blake’s Songs Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No. English pre-Romantic poetry Unit objectives Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The poetry of melancholy meditation The interest in early poetry The pre-Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The rural universe in 18thcentury poetry The sentimental approach: Oliver Goldsmith Character sketch in The Deserted Village The realistic approach: George Crabbe Robert Burns and the popular tradition Pre-Romantic nature poetry James Thomson. 6.2.3.1.4. 6.1.2. 6.2. 6.7. 6.2.3. 6.Contents Gallery of personalities SAA No. 6. 6. 2 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 144 145 146 148 149 150 150 151 151 153 153 154 154 155 156 158 158 159 161 161 162 163 166 166 167 168 170 171 171 173 173 174 176 177 216 6 6. 6. 6.6.3.4. 6. 6.3. 6.4. 6.4.2.4. 6. The Seasons William Cowper.1.3.1.2.

” at helping you refine your perception of literary phenomena and categories. In this way. You are expected and urged to bring to the understanding of this extended literary period the knowledge acquired in your previous study. It will familiarise you with the defining features of the literary trends and doctrines of these two centuries. Literature is always an important testimony to the evolution of this spirit. by encouraging your response to particular texts. such as was presented in your Cultural Studies course. It will thus contribute to the consolidation of your knowledge and understanding of British culture and civilisation. among others). it would be helpful if you refreshed your acquaintance with the basic historical and cultural framework of the 17th and 18th centuries. Before starting your study. the study of the present course will more efficiently contribute to your professional becoming. 3. What this course is about This course is a brief introduction to English literature in the 17th and 18th centuries. You must bear in mind that the teaching of a foreign language does not presuppose only a good command of its grammatical structures and vocabulary. and to the enrichment of your grasp of the English language. a carrier of values. Defoe. but also to examine more closely particular texts by the most important authors (Shakespeare. this course aims at enlarging your understanding of British culture and civilisation. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 1 . Milton. Fielding. and on certain texts – will hopefully help you to overcome the relatively great temporal and cultural distance separating us from those centuries. The double focus of the course – on general aspects of a particular period or doctrine. Course objectives As already mentioned. Swift.Introduction INTRODUCTION 1. and will highlight the contributions of their most representative literary personalities. but also an intimate acquaintance with the spirit of that culture and civilisation. 2. You will be able to build a general picture of the main literary achievements of this period. How this course can help you The study of this course will widen your perspective on English literature and its evolution. Blake. and an “agent” in the cultural dynamics in a country. Being concerned with aspects of literary history. It also aims at developing your “reading competence. this course will give you a minimum of contextual detail.

Each unit. and a Gallery of personalities. preRomanticism) • identify such features in the work of a particular author or in a particular text (e. the Restoration. the Augustan Age. a list of key words.lIntroduction This complex aim presupposes your development of certain specific competences. forming a chronological survey of the major literary developments in the 17th and 18th centuries. in a given text. you should therefore be able to: define the distinctive features. as part of your overall assessment.g.g. or establish what links Fielding’s novels to literary Neoclassicism. the characteristic attitudes and concerns of such cultural-historical-literary movements or periods as the Renaissance. By the end of your study of this course. identify the features of the baroque sensibility in Shakespeare’s tragedies. the Enlightenment • identify elements of continuity and discontinuity between these periods and movements • define the main features of an aesthetic-literary doctrine or type of literary sensibility (e. is structured around a series of tasks that you must accomplish – the self-assessing questions (the SAQs). Neoclassicism. • 4. Some of the units also contain an assignment that you have to do and send to your tutor. thematic and formal structure in the works of various authors. characterisation. The solutions and suggestions for SAQs are provided in a separate section. in its turn. 2 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the values of a particular culturalhistorical or literary age • distinguish the proportion of originality and conformity to a tradition in a particular work or a given text • specify the contribution of the studied authors and their works to the evolution of literary forms and styles • describe and compare particularities of style. a Glossary. Course content and structure This course is structured in six units of study. the Baroque. a unit contains a series of “auxiliary” sections: a Summary. Besides them. or what makes Blake a Romantic poet) • identify.

• 4. You will get acquainted with the contributions of four major novelists – D. as well as major representatives. with an emphasis on the evolution of genres and styles and their main representatives. and they will enable you to work with it in a specific context. The main focus in this unit is on the imaginative structure and thematic interest of Milton’s masterpiece. • Unit 6 (English pre-Romantic poetry) introduces you to the poetry of sensibility of the 18th century as the illustration of an important literary tendency. • Unit 5 (The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel) presents the main concerns and the typology of the novel as a dominant genre in the 18th century. The most common SAQs in this course will require you to: Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 3 . Richardson. and insists on William Blake as both a pre-Romantic and Romantic poet. • Unit 4 (The Restoration and the Augustan Age) deals with four major aspects: the comedy of manners during the age of the Restoration. hopefully. The self-assessment questions (SAQs) The self-assessment questions in each unit have the role of helping you to structure and organise your study. and to draw your own conclusions. and Augustan satire. They appeal not only to your memory.Introduction 4. Defoe. S. The major authors considered in this unit are Shakespeare and the poets John Donne and Andrew Marvell. The units of learning Unit 1 (The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background) offers a general picture of the literary scene and its intellectual-cultural context.2. Fielding and L.1. Sterne –. the periodical essay of the 18th century as an important contribution to Augustan literature. The unit surveys characteristic preRomantic themes and motifs. the epic poem Paradise Lost. engage you actively and in diverse ways in the process of study. and with the evolution of this genre. • Unit 2 (The late Renaissance and the Baroque) deals with the emergence of the baroque sensibility in English late Renaissance literature. These tasks will guide you in the process of ordering your knowledge. • Unit 3 (The works of John Milton) emphasises Milton’s Christian humanism. The SAQs encourage you to see your course work as more than a simple effort of memory (although the importance of memory in the process of learning must not be underrated). but also to your independent thinking and to your imagination. with main focus on Jonathan Swift. the literary doctrine of Neoclassicism. H. The variety of these learning tasks will.

The estimated length of your answers will be indicated as number of words / number of lines. You are also given instructions about how to proceed if your answers differ significantly from the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs (see below). an author’s work. Do not get discouraged if some of your answers should not come near the suggestions offered at the end. etc. You are strongly advised to resist the temptation of consulting this section before you have actually tried to do the exercises yourself. characterisation. You are given detailed instructions about what is expected from you. with the typological definition of a work. after you have identified them in/after a provided short description • match a given literary fragment with a given paraphrase. etc. A line in your textboxes is estimated to contain ten words on the average. match incomplete statements so as to reconstruct an idea or a description • identify true/false sentences. narrative technique.lIntroduction answer questions about the theme. and you are advised to read those instructions carefully and to follow them. fragment) • complete sentences. • A self-assessed question (SAQ) is signalled in the course text by this icon accompanying a textbox. • paraphrase a given fragment from a studied literary work. of a certain work or a provided fragment • explain the relevance or significance of a certain item (phrase. and. line. the title of a work. symbolic elements. the independent intellectual effort that you are encouraged to put into your learning. summarise its argument. at the end of the unit. Try to analyse your errors and to become aware of everything you have missed in the instructions of the SAQ. etc. Solutions and suggestions for SAQs You can check your answers to each SAQ by going to this section. 4 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .. so as to obtain synthetic reformulations or rephrasings of relevant details about a literary period. so as to re-describe certain important aspects about a literary period or a particular writer’s work • fill in blanks with the features of a certain literary movement or style. 4. in the literary text you were asked to work on. stylistic features. if the case may be.3. state its theme • comment on / interpret a given fragment. You are required to solve these SAQs in the blank spaces provided for each of them in textboxes. Remember that what counts most is the process of thinking that leads you to a particular answer.

will also appear in Units 5 and 6. • the Gallery of personalities (in the alphabetical order of the last names). in order to make sure you remember exactly what a term refers to. which includes basic information about the life and work of the mentioned personalities. which is explained in the Glossary in Unit 1. at the end. the Glossaries will send you back to 1. you will be sometimes returned to the Glossary of a previous unit to reinforce or refresh your understanding of them. the term Enlightenment. which indicates a minimal bibliography for each unit. • Further reading. if necessary or desired. when this notion is used again in Units 4 or 6. You may also be directed back to a certain subchapter in a previous unit.4. which will enable you to review and focus your knowledge. For instance. The materials indicated in the Further reading section and in the Selective bibliography (see below) offer you supplementary information. an asterisk must be understood to mark not just the word it is attached to. in Unit 1. if you wish to supplement or clarify your knowledge • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 5 . with the pages where you may find relevant information.3. • the Selective bibliography at the end of the course. These auxiliary sections are: the Summary and a list of key words. Some terms may recur in several units. in which terms or phrases that have been considered difficult or unfamiliar to you are explained.1. Most of the books included there are available in any University library. whose Glossaries will send you back to the Glossary in Unit 1.1.3. the notion of heroic couplet is explained in subchapter 1. Thus. Sometimes. For example. but the phrase of which that word is part. Auxiliary sections Each unit contains. which contains titles that should not be very hard to find in libraries. for the Great Chain of Being*. You may ask your tutor to help you with the access to those sources. not just Being.Introduction 4. to organise it around the most important issues • the Glossary (in alphabetical order). other instruments meant to assist your study. you will look up the whole phrase in the Glossary. The terms included in the Glossary are marked by an asterisk (*) in the text of the unit.

5. and the weight of each assignment: 6 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . As the texts are not very long. this should not take you too much time. If you should find these lexical notes insufficient for your understanding of a particular text. The three SAAs are placed at the end of units 3. The cumulated weight of these SAAs in your final grade is 40%. don’t hesitate to use a good dictionary. or misleadingly familiar to you are explained either in English or in Romanian. The given explanation or translation into Romanian applies only to the respective context. 1 will assess your knowledge of units 2 and 3. A send-away assignment (SAA) is signalled in the text by the icon accompanying this textbox. This is why the same word may appear with different explanations/translations in several glossaries. The Reader provides you with little glossaries for each text. These first two SAAs will therefore consist in more than one task. the number of tasks. 5. difficult. and 6. which contains the selection of texts you need in order to accomplish some of the course tasks. or one word may be given an explanation/translation different from the one you might be familiar with. the course contains three send-away assignments (SAAs). The table below represents the place.5.2 will cover units 4 and 5. try to read each fragment more than once.lIntroduction 4. The written test that you will sit at the end of the semester will add the other 60%. especially the poetry texts. in which the words and phrases supposed to be unknown. which will enable your tutor to assess your performance in the course work. In any case. before you start solving the task. while SAA no. and make sure you understand its general meaning or basic ideas. As we are dealing with 17th and 18th century literature. some of these texts might seem difficult to you. SAA no. Assessment and evaluation Besides the self-assessment questions included in each unit. The Reader The course is accompanied by a Reader.

1 SAA no. Your study schedule This course is devised for 42 hours of study. find your own rhythm and divide your study time into several sessions. 6.2 SAA no. If your level of proficiency is lower. and 8 hours to the completion of your SAAs. at least take care that your handwriting should be fully legible. clarity. • the coherence. so pay special attention to the instructions for each task (30%). 1. If you have no possibility to type your assignment. 2. 50% 50% 50% 30% 20% 100% 10% 20% 10% 40% In the assessment of each assignment. to go through each unit in approximately 4 hours. whose reading may take you some extra time. Plan your study by taking into account that a semester has 14 weeks. half of the answer is already contained in the question. 3. You may. 2. Note that a typewritten paper is likely to ease your tutor’s work. 28 are meant for individual study of the course material (the solving of the SAQs included). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 7 . 6 hours are allotted to your tutorial meetings. Of these hours. theoretically.3 3 5 6 2 3 1 1. 1. Most of the time. your course work may take you more time. As in the case of the SAQs. make sure you understand what is being asked of you in each assignment. You can reserve two weeks for each unit of learning – which means that you are expected. Your ability to identify and use the knowledge required by a particular situation is part of what is assessed in any test. This is more likely to happen when you are required to work on literary texts. however. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Each assignment must be completed and sent to the tutor in the allotted study week (see Your study schedule below). the tutor will take into account: • the degree to which your answer respects the formulated requirement.Introduction Unit Number of tasks and their weight in each SAA Weight of each SAA in the final assessment SAA no.

while the final written test will represent 60 % in your overall evaluation. as 40% of the final grade. list of key words. The course contains several auxiliary sections (summary. and gallery of personalities). which you will find in the Reader accompanying the coursebook. 5. and 6. representative authors. of the evolution of literary genres. respectively. The three assignments will count. as the course provides you with the solutions and suggestions for SAQs at the end of each unit. forms and styles. there are SAAs. but which also focus on dominant genres and on outstanding. A provisional study schedule may look like this: Week Unit Number of study hours Assignment Number of hours for the SAAs 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Introduction Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 Unit 4 Unit 5 Unit 6 Revision 2 4 4 4 4 4 4 2 28 SAA no. as well as a list of suggested further reading. Many of these SAQs require your response to a literary text. 8 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . glossary. Summary This course offers you an overview of the literary periods and trends. along the 17th and 18th centuries in England. which will help you to organise and focus your knowledge. You have the possibility to monitor your work by verifying your answers. It is structured in six units of study. together. More information about the subjects in each unit is available in the selective bibliography which concludes the coursebook.lIntroduction The first and the last week should be reserved for the Introduction and.2 SAA no. according to a pre-established schedule. Each unit includes a series of self-assessing tasks (SAQs).1 2 Planning your course work is important as it will enable you to send your assignments to the tutor in due time. At the end of Units 3.3 3 3 8 SAA no. which you must write and send to your tutor. whose content follows a chronological line. a revision of the course material.

2.1.3. 1.4.2.2.5.4.1. 1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background UNIT 1 THE SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES: INTELLECTUAL AND LITERARY BACKGROUND Unit Outline 1 1.1.3. Unit objectives The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The intellectual scene in the 17th and 18th centuries Reason and faith in the Age of the Enlightenment From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling The Enlightenment: an age of progress An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries The evolution of poetic forms Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries Jacobean tragedy Comedy in the early 17th century Drama during the Restoration period Sentimental drama and burlesque comedy in the 18th century The evolution of prose style Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 10 10 10 10 11 12 12 13 15 16 17 18 19 19 21 21 23 24 24 28 30 30 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 9 .1. 1.4. 1.4. 1.1. 1. 1.1.1. 1. 1.5. 1.4.1.3. 1.4. 1.4. 1.

of philosophical empiricism* determined to a great extent the attitudes to man in his relationship to society.1. The completion of this transition was to take place during the next age. in the latter part of the 17th century. dramatic and prose genres and their main representatives in their proper literary-historical context within the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries Unit objectives 1. at the end of this period. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. literature. cultural and literary aspects ♦ establish elements of continuity and discontinuity along the two centuries ♦ explain the process of literary “modernisation” along these two centuries through the evolution of styles and the dynamic of genres ♦ place various poetic. the year of the Glorious Revolution*. which in England is in fact considered to have started in 1688. 1. in which the progress of England to modernity was steady in all fields. The end of “high Renaissance” (the flourishing of the Elizabethan* Age) and the “late Renaissance”. The gradual achievement of political stability. The rise. Culturally the two centuries correspond to two movements whose basic tendency was the emancipation of man: the Renaissance* and the Enlightenment*. of the Enlightenment. The growing critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. seen as extending up to the Restoration* (1660) were periods of gradual but irreversible changes in modes of thought. a powerful flourishing nation.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ define the most important tendencies in the evolution of intellectual attitudes in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries ♦ establish connections between the historical and intellectual context and the literary scene ♦ describe the major divisions of this long period according to historical. science. philosophy. mentalities. religion. nature and divinity during the Age of Reason. social and economic life. The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries constitute a complex period. Political. the arts – all fields of human endeavour went through crucial transformations during the 17th century. as the Enlightenment is often described. radical changes occurred in intellectual habits and preoccupations. The intellectual scene Along the two centuries. colonial expansion and an extraordinary economic development made England. marked the entrance into modernity.1. as well as the faith in progress.1. 10 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . attitudes and practices. obscurantism and intolerance.

was an evidence of the creator’s good will. Reason and faith in the Age of the Enlightenment The rationalism of the Renaissance and Enlightenment thought determined a reconsideration of the relation between Nature and Divinity and a new vision of the universe. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 11 .” 1. to reconcile Reason and Faith. which was left to develop by itself on the basis of these perfect laws. and it was essentially optimistic. a religious movement which aimed at reviving the Evangelical spirit and the ideal of Christian life.” This idea will be echoed several decades later. had important philosophical and theological implications: the universe was now conceived as a perfect mechanism. in a systematic effort. Deists believed that the admirable order of the universe.2. The moral philosophy of the Deists argued that man was innately good. It was a highly intellectualised religious approach. manifest in its rationally and experimentally discernible laws. The scientific discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton*. It was a rational alternative to religious dogmatism.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Francis Bacon It is also during these two centuries that modern science was born. Deism attempted to give a rational foundation to religious thought. This new faith – Deism. The Royal Society endeavoured. Engaging in a variety of original scientific experiments. and which encouraged emotional effusion as a way of achieving communion with God. the “universal Architect. the capacity of distinguishing right from wrong. working according to impersonal laws which testified to the supreme intelligence of the Creator. in 1662. initiated by Isaac Newton and John Locke*. One of the most ardent promoters of the new scientific spirit was Francis Bacon* (1561-1626). which could not offer spiritual comfort to the large masses of the poor and uneducated. It was to be counter-balanced by the Evangelical Revival*. that human life be enriched by new discoveries and powers.” God was seen as the prime cause of a harmonious universe. or Natural Religion –. under the patronage of Charles II.1. endowed with a sixth sense: the moral sense. in particular. In his work Novum Organum (1620) he explicitly states that “The true and lawful goal of the sciences is simply this. combined the traditional confidence in the divine infinite wisdom with the intellectual spirit of the age. The optimism of the Deists extended to human nature. a reaction against mysticism and obscurantism. His well-known maxim “Knowledge is Power” points to the utilitarian conception of the role of science. when The Royal Society “for the improving of Natural Knowledge” was founded. to “overcome the mysteries of all the works of Nature” and to apply that knowledge “for the benefit of human life.

The emergence of Deism was a reaction to religious dogmatism. which made Enlightenment England a model of civilisation for the Western world. The Enlightenment: an age of progress On the whole. SAQ 1 The following exercise will help you revise some of the more important aspects concerning the intellectual and cultural background of the 17th and 18th centuries.3. for each sentence. when he declared: ”The proper study of mankind is Man. the awareness of the complex interdependencies in a modern civilisation made it necessary to reconcile the individual pursuit of happiness and freedom with the general wellbeing. and which prepared the way for the Romantic Age*.4. 1. to superstition and obscurantism. The interest in the constitution and workings of the human mind awakened the awareness that man’s response to reality was not only rational. The Royal Society was an institution concerned with the spreading of Neoclassical principles in art and literature. in his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). the central concern of the Enlightenment. T F 4. T F 12 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which may be defined as the Age of Sensibility. appropriately. but also affective and instinctual. The Deist image of God as the “Universal Architect” reveals a rationalist-mechanicist conception of the universe.1. The growing spirit of individualism. The cult of Reason thus gave way to the cult of Feeling. T F 2. in the latter part of the Age of the Enlightenment. The development of modern science and the rise of philosophical empiricism are major aspects of the process of intellectual modernisation in England in the 17th and 18th centuries. T F 5.1. It was a general dedication to the cause of progress. Individual and social good was the object of all endeavours in this age. Circle T (true) or F (false). The Enlightenment continued the Renaissance faith in man’s perfectibility and sought for man’s emancipation both as an individual and as a social being. the Enlightenment. with its belief in the perfectibility of man. 1. Read the statements below and identify the true ones.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. T F 3. continued the project of the Renaissance. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling This infusion of emotionalism in spiritual life may be seen as the sign of a certain evolution in the temper of the 18th century. The Deist notion of innate virtue came to be connected with man’s capacity for feeling.” The whole century was preoccupied with the idea of man’s happiness and of the improvement of man’s condition on earth. The poet Alexander Pope indicated.

The study and imitation of the great Latin and Greek authors and the concern with literary tradition as a reliable source of models made literature highly conventional. 1. at the end of the unit. but also to the close connection between the dominant literary values of those ages and Court life. the social diversification and the “unfixing” of the strictly hierarchical order of the Renaissance led gradually towards a “democratisation” of literature. The abundance of classical Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 13 . The Court was not only the catalyst of the emerging national feeling. After 1688.1. symmetry. T F 8.1. in the orbit of the crown. with their Literature in the Age of Common Man cultivated taste. but also the ultimate arbiter life on literature in matters of literary and artistic fashions. Jacobean* and Caroline* of the “high” and late Renaissance literature points not only to a temporal delimitation. regularity. It is significant. The absolute authority of the monarch made the Court the Influence of Court centre of intellectual and literary life. It was the main focus of literary attention. The Evangelical Revival shared with Deism the attempt to give a rational foundation to religious faith. Numerous treatises on literary art established norms and precepts. including readers of more modest education. and exalted Reason as the only defining human faculty. There was a general care for discipline and refinement in composition. and the literary field was no longer confined to the learned. read again subchapters.” T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Alexander Pope pointed out the humanistic orientation of the Enlightenment in his maxim “The proper study of mankind is man. the decrease in the power of the Crown. the great ages of the Renaissance and of the Enlightenment may be further divided according to various criteria. to 1. The division into Elizabethan. The 18th century is called sometimes The Age of Common Man. and both writers and audiences were. The Age of the Enlightenment excluded completely the interest in human feeling and emotion. A new interest in rhetoric animated authors to pursue eloquence by a lavish use of figures of speech and the display of wit*.2. for instance.4. An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries From a literary point of view. that the notion of reading public emerges now. This is mainly connected with the rise of the middle classes and the growth of their cultural importance. T F 7. with little or no classical knowledge. You may also need to revise some of the terms explained in the Glossary. when the literary audience becomes more diversified. in one way or another.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 6. The literature of the Renaissance was under the sign of the classical revival*. and the accepted patterns and conventions were touchstones for literary virtuosity and originality.1. If you have failed to identify any of the sentences correctly as true or false. for proportion.

Molière. The comparative merit of ancient and modern standards of literary excellence and learning became a central issue of critical debate. with its highly conventional forms and rhetorical style.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background The Augustan Age: literary Neoclassicism allusions demonstrated the author’s erudition and required from the readers familiarity with classical learning. a. so as to obtain complete sentences describing aspects of the general literary picture of the 17th and 18th centuries. 14 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Jean Racine. A significant aspect of Augustan literature is the development and importance of literary criticism. Racine.” started in the late 17th century. The great French classical authors of the 17th century (Boileau. in which the declining phase of the Renaissance was characterised by a return to the classics. England’s intellectual and literary exchanges with Catholic France had been suspended during the Civil War*. Molière)…… d. on the model of the French controversy known as the “Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns. This reflects. This led to the emergence Neoclassicism* in England. when the merits of the “Ancients” and the “Moderns” became the object of comparison. a new consciousness of the relationship between literary tradition and modernity. The mid-seventeenth century was an age of transition. The Court was the main source of influence…… b. …… c. the “Sun King” –: Nicolas Boileau. but they were resumed during the Restoration*. Corneille. but also to the influence of the French authors of the great classical century – the age of Louis XIV. above all. Much of Renaissance literature. …on literary taste and fashions during the Renaissance. during the Augustan Age*. …the Augustan Age. English Neoclassicism must be linked not only to the survival of the Renaissance humanism. Complete each sentence in the provided space. Pierre Corneille. The relationship between tradition and modernity became a matter of literary consciousness during…… 1. 2. SAQ 2 Read the partial statements below and match them.

original or translated epics. Thomas Gray and William Collins (in the latter). by the Romantic poets. Other lyric forms endured: the ode. the sonnet* – dominated Renaissance poetry. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. concentration. or religion and politics – John Milton. John Dryden (in the former). The heroic couplet was the perfect verse couplet structure of the Age of Reason. and the Puritan Andrew Marvell must also be included here. which are illustrative of a pre-Romantic* cross-current. They approached other themes besides love: e. 4. or his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). In parallel. the blank verse* – on the model of Milton in his great Blank verse epic* Paradise Lost (1667) – was extensively used in the 18th century. conveyed by means of a rich variety of rhetorical effects. George Herbert. The most Renaissance lyric enduring poetic achievements of the early 17th century is the forms sequence of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609). religious faith – John Donne. at the end of the unit.g.3. tight logical coherence and striking imagery.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 3. The evolution of poetic forms The lyric. The chief model for The sonnet sequence Renaissance soneteers was Petrarch* and his love sonnets to Laura. If you have failed to make the right match.2. the verse satire emerged as a novelty at the end of the 17th century and flourished during the next – John Dryden and Alexander Pope being its unequalled masters. James Thomson. The common vehicle for it was the heroic couplet – two rhyming The Augustan heroic lines containing a complete statement. Its name refers to a certain Metaphysical expressive strategy. …influenced English literary Neoclassicism. combining classical restraint with force of argument and expressive clarity. A remarkable poetic development in the first half of the 17th century was the metaphysical poetry (John Donne. for instance. in its various forms – the song*. Alexander Pope. It favoured conciseness. but English poets varied the highly conventional form of this kind of poem. Thomas Carew. It appealed both to the intellect and to the emotions. the pastoral* lyric. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 15 . Andrew Marvell. Its perfect mastery is illustrated by works like Pope’s didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711). 1. acquainted with the great classical authors and works. Robert Herrick). The sonnet fell into disuse during the late Renaissance and it was revived only towards the end of the 18th century. or meditative-descriptive poems like James Thomson’s The Seasons (1726-1730) or William Cowper’s The Task (1785). in a variety of poetical forms: philosophical poems. the ode*. …addressed itself to learned readers. and it made extensive use of wit. Apart from the classical poetic forms that survived into the Restoration and the Augustan Age. you need to revise subchapter 1. continued to be used throughout the 17th and 18th centuries: John Milton. which departed from the artificiality and poetry conventionalism of most Elizabethan poetry. A “metaphysical” strain exists in Shakespeare’s final period of creation.

the verse satires of Dryden and Pope (Unit 4). at the end of the unit. in the space left below. In the following units of this course. In little more than half a century (1580-1642). a brilliant constellation of playwrights founded a dramatic tradition which represents the best and most original expression of the nation’s creative genius. Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries The Renaissance was the Golden Age of English drama. comparable perhaps only with the rise of the novel in the next century. a new appreciation of older poetic forms. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.4. revise subchapter 1. we shall look more closely at some of the most representative poetic works of these two centuries: the metaphysical poetry of Donne and Marvell (Unit 2). 16 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . some of them of popular origin (the song. If there should be major differences between them. The flourishing of English drama during the Renaissance is a unique phenomenon. and the “poetry of sensibility” which announced the coming of the Romantic Age (Unit 6). It was the only form of literature which.3. through its representation on stage. enjoyed a widely popular appeal. SAQ 3 Which are the most popular kinds of poems in the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least six of them. together with their most outstanding representatives. 1. the ballad) and the increasing hostility to the artificiality and conventionalism of Augustan poetic diction* heralded the shift in taste which marked the beginning of Romanticism.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Towards the end of the century.

sometimes he rights the wrong done to another. The great age of English drama ended abruptly in 1642. treachery. rape. and the rhetorical manner. but destroys himself along with his enemies. tragi-comedy. fascinating through unbounded ambition. the wronged hero plans revenge. where bloody deeds were only evoked through an efficient rhetoric of the dramatic discourse. insanity. Of the Caroline playwrights. the sensational plot. 1. each variety of spectator responding to the performance according to his/her education and imagination. 1633).4. as well as John Webster’s heroine in The White Devil. and this “unholy alliance” between crown and stage increased the intransigence of the Puritans. with his exploration of the darkness of strange passions. 1607). Renaissance playwrights borrowed the five-act structure. Unlike Senecan plays. A particular type of protagonist became fashionable in revenge tragedies: the villain. murder. Thomas Middleton (Women Beware Women. sensational and macabre. On the whole. the fundamentally evil hero/heroine. Masters of this genre were the Jacobean dramatists Cyril Tourneur (The Revenger’s Tragedy. Some dramatic forms went out of fashion. Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1601) is the finest illustration of this kind of tragedy. They saw the theatre as a source of moral corruption through the “idle” pleasure that it offered. daring and wit. exploiting excessively morbid ingredients like incest.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Contemporary reconstruction of a Jacobean playhouse The play-house. John Ford (‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore. 17 Revenge tragedy The villain in revenge tragedy Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The great acting companies were under the patronage of the king. with its audience arranged according to rank. but the spirit of the great tradition was never recaptured. was a miniature of the English society. drama witnessed a decline. and in the 18th century it was replaced by the novel in popularity. The dramatic genres popular during the Renaissance were extremely diverse: tragedy and comedy with their varieties. when the Puritans* closed the theatres. In 1660. inspired by the plays of the Roman Stoic Seneca*. The type of the villain is the descendant of the Devil in the mediaeval Mystery plays* and a forerunner of the arch-villain in English literature. play-houses were reopened. They were generally. 1614). while others changed. Milton’s Satan. Jacobean and Caroline plays usually represented atrocities on stage. is the most gifted. In such plays. 1605-6). to accommodate the tastes of a new public. historical drama. From Senecan tragedy. who usually appears as a ghost on the stage. Jacobean tragedy One of the most widespread forms of tragedy was the revenge tragedy. pastoral drama. Shakespeare’s protagonist in Richard III (1592-3) and Lady Macbeth (Macbeth. with the restoration of monarchy.1. 1612) and especially John Webster (The Duchess of Malfi. built around the theme of revenge. etc. or Vittoria Corombona (1612) are among the most accomplished portrayals of the villain in drama. masque*. in Paradise Lost.

1. intended to correct vices and follies by denouncing them. but. dealing with middle or lower class life and concentrating on personal and domestic maters – unlike “grand” tragedy. or at least tinged with bitterness. If you have failed to identify the true statements. Volpone (1606). T F 3.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background A distinct type in late Renaissance drama is domestic tragedy. 1. the satirical comedy. The Jacobean and Caroline authors of revenge tragedies had Seneca as their model. at the end of the unit. circle the appropriate letter: T (true) or F (false). T F 7.4. reminds of the fascinating villain-heroes of the Renaissance revenge tragedies by his extraordinary ambition and boldness. Milton’s Satan. For each sentence. or in Philaster (1609) by John Fletcher and Francis Beaumont. The hero of revenge tragedy often destroys himself in his desire to right a wrong done to him or to another. Ben Jonson* illustrates another form. his comedies become darker. T F 4. read again subchapters 1. centred on the theme of love. His best plays. The Alchemist (1610) and Bartholomew Fair (1614) are social comedies of city life. Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a classic example of domestic tragedy. reflecting. in miniature. Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are the great masters. whose fall from eminence marks the destruction of an order.1. read the following statements. though each in a different way. 18 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . as in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida (1601-2) or The Winter’s Tale (1610-11). the hierarchy of English society. with its noble characters. T F 5.4. a genre which will survive into the 18th century. Comedy in the early 17th century In the field of comedy. identifying the four true ones. SAQ 4 For a revision of some important features of Renaissance English drama. T F Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Renaissance tragedy had four acts – a structure borrowed from Seneca. in Paradise Lost.4. Shakespeare’s Elizabethan phase included a number of exquisite romantic comedies. or The Silent Woman (1609). Epicoene. in the last period of creation. T F 2. as in All’s Well That Ends Well (1602-3) or Measure for Measure (1604-5). The mixture of serious and comic elements results in tragicomedy. and 1.2. Seneca’s tragedies inspired Jacobean and Caroline authors in the representation of atrocities on stage. T F 6. The English play-house during the Renaissance accommodated a diverse audience.

Oliver Goldsmith (The GoodNatured Man.4. The feeling that some dramatic forms were out of their time and were maintained artificially led to the emergence of a burlesque* kind of comedy.g. The Conquest of Granada. with idealised heroes and heroines divided between love and honour or duty. mocks at certain theatrical conventions. or The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great (1731). 1669-70). or The Mistakes of a Night. In The Rehearsal (1671). It lacked the latter’s liveliness and brilliance. The School for Scandal. and Richard Brinsely Sheridan (The Rivals. but it appealed to a wide middle class public. satirises heroic tragedy and so does Henry Fielding in his successful parody The Tragedy of Tragedies. for instance. 1768. with their grandiose declamations and artificial conception of heroism.4. which continued the realistic spirit of the earlier satirical plays. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 19 . but serious drama declined during the 18th century. these plays built a world of high passion and incredible bravery. Sentimental drama and burlesque comedy in the 18th century The drama of sensibility – with sentimental comedy as its dominant type – emerged as a reaction to the Restoration comedy.4. 1769). Drama during the Restoration period Restoration drama developed in an age of scepticism and cynicism. Restoration comedy presented an elegant society. Tragedy was replaced in popular taste by a form that stood in sharp contrast with the unheroic spirit of the age: heroic drama.3. and it denounced puritanical virtue as hypocrisy. of pleasure-seeking and relaxation after the strict moral code imposed to the nation by the Puritans. George Villiers. She Stoops to Conquer. who demanded models of virtue and decency. Heroic drama The comedy of manners 1. Heroic plays. The painful intensity of Renaissance tragedy did no longer move the hearts of audiences that either were too frivolous or whose mind had been subtly influenced by Puritan morality. a stylish and sophisticated world. The most representative works of this kind belong to Richard Steele (The Conscious Lovers. 1665. were a passing extravagance. 1773). Duke of Buckingham. John Gay. 1722). too. Henry Fielding). 1777). Alexander Pope) and in the novel (e. which ridiculed them through exaggerated imitation. Under the influence of French tragedies. in his satirical play The Beggar’s Opera (1728). Richard Cumberland (The Brothers.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. but also of French and Spanish romantic novels of adventure.g. There were a few attempts to revive classical tragedy or domestic tragedy. 1775. but whose aim was not so much to correct manners as to entertain. The main representatives – the Restoration Wits* – were courtiers and aristocrats who assumed the role of leaders of fashion and taste. A more representative achievement of the Restoration is the comedy of manners. The best achievement in this genre belongs to John Dryden (The Indian Emperor. This parodic spirit was not confined to drama: the mockheroic style* was also used in poetry (e.

at the end of the unit. we shall focus on William Shakespeare’s later plays.4.2.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background SAQ 5 What are the main varieties of comedy during the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least five of them in the space below. revise subchapters 1. to 1.4. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and in Unit 4 you will be acquainted with more features of Restoration comedy. 20 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . together with their most outstanding representatives. If there should be major differences between them.4. Two moments in the evolution of English drama will be further detailed in this course: in Unit 2.

Here. the virtues of common speech permeated the language of all kinds of writings. on clarity and rationality. The Pilgrim’s Progress Among the prose forms widely used for intellectual argument. Influence of Latin on prose style The prose of intellectual argument 1. displaying a variety of styles. English as an instrument of literary and intellectual communication still competed with classical Latin. Journalism as a form of prose writing emerged during the Civil War and flourished during the 18th century. contributing essentially to the forging of a more straightforward and simple style. religious writings are particularly important. Francis Bacon was the first notable writer to plead for – and to illustrate – a prose style more suited for intellectual argument. suitable for conveying “the knowledge of things” and intelligible to the average Englishman. prose works written in English displayed a highly rhetorical style. a precious and highly ornate language. The rhetorical extravagance and ingenuity which had still dominated the early 17th century (not only in prose). the universal language of the Renaissance. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 21 . More and more. prepared the English language for a variety of uses: in scientific. temptations. Later in the century. influenced immensely Bunyan’s the language of prose. 1625) are prose classics in English literature. he describes the Christian soul’s search for salvation in the form of an allegorical journey along the path of life. deliberately artificial and intricate.5. wealth and freshness greatly influenced the language of prose. as the growing complexity of life increased the need for social and intellectual communication. with its illustration to simplicity and natural flow of common speech. with its trials. accomplished under the patronage of James I – established a model of English whose beauty. The language of prose tended to become plain and transparent.1. Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Of the literary forms that contributed significantly to the development of English prose.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. the essay* proved the most flexible. Thomas Hobbes* and John Locke also insisted on the necessity of a language at once flexible and precise. gave way to an ideal of prose style more suited to the Age of Common Man. 1612. weaknesses. in which rhetorical figures were subordinated to rational lucidity. Sermons were a widely popular form of prose-writing. Gradually.5. in political tracts and pamphlets. The evolution of prose style At the beginning of the 17th century. philosophical and theological writings. The English translation of the Bible – the “Authorised Version” of 1611. another Latin influence began to mould English prose style: that of Seneca and Tacitus*. Under the influence of Latin – especially of Cicero* –. Francis Bacon’s Essays (1597. This allegorical expression of Puritan faith. A different vein in religious writing is illustrated by the Puritan John Bunyan (1628-1688) and his extremely popular book The Pilgrim’s Progress (1678). The development of an aphoristic style*. struggles and William Blake: aspirations. blending concision with wit.

Like drama. In the 17th century. 1666). inclusive character is displayed by Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651). Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. William Prynne’s Histriomastix. a prose genre whose model was provided by the Greek writer Theophrastus*. delighting in speculation and building the knowledge they explored into an elaborate structure. A variety of other prose genres developed during the 17th century: historical and geographical accounts (Walter Raleigh. biographies (Izaak Walton. Milton’s Areopagitica. 1644 – a famous defense of the freedom of the press). 1621) and Sir Thomas Browne (Religio Medici. Robert Burton (The Anatomy of Melancholy. etc. whose purpose was didactic or satirical. spiritual biographies (John Bunyan. the great literary achievement of the 18th century. of remarkable precision and force. Anatomies were monuments of learning. the spiritual autobiography and the “character” were literary expressions of the growing interest in human individuality. Human character as portrayed in their essays was at the same time typical and individualised. with his Life of John Donne among other works of this kind – 1670). unadorned style. letters. “The Religion of a Doctor. but its impressive intellectual architecture is achieved in a simple. which anticipates the prose of the Neoclassical period. another form of prose writing which displayed divergent tendencies in style was the anatomy. Samuel Purchas). The same encyclopaedic. pamphlets* (e. This kind of approach had a considerable influence on the realistic novel. with its explorations of the complexities of human mind and character. To these must be added the character. “Characters” were miniature portraits of human types.” 1642) are the most outstanding representatives of this genre. The character as a prose genre influenced Richard Steele and Joseph Addison in their periodical essays. the biography as an emerging prose genre.g.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Frontispiece to Leviathan provides another example of this prose form – this time in booklength – as a vehicle for analysis of ideas and intellectual demonstration. Joseph Hall inaugurated the English tradition of this genre. aphoristic style. which analyses the constitution of human society. 22 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . executed in a witty. with Characters of Virtue and Vices (1608). diaries (John Evelyn. 1632 – the most virulent Puritan attack on the theatre. Samuel Pepys). exhausting the subjects they dealt with. in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690).

and 1. Culturally. The following units will detail some aspects concerning the development of prose in the two centuries: in Unit 4. Summary This unit has offered you a brief introduction to the intellectual and literary developments of the 17th and 18th centuries. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. intellectual habits and preoccupations changed radically: philosophic thought became secular. in a paragraph of no more than 7 lines / 70 words. the progress from the old order of the feudal world to the modern age was completed. Within these two centuries. obscurantism and intolerance. This was a period of great changes at all levels of life in England. between which there is continuity. since both place Man and the improvement of his condition at the centre of their concerns. the image of the universe was changed. A steady process of economic development and imperial expansion made England the world’s greatest power. read again subchapters 1. while Unit 5 will deal entirely with the novel in the 18th century. modern science was born. as well as the faith in progress. at the end of the unit. to the great movements of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. Within these two centuries. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. you will learn more about the periodical essay. roughly. more carefully. the growing scepticism and critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture.. marked the entrance into Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 23 . If there should be major differences between them. these two centuries correspond.5.1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background SAQ 6 In what direction did English prose style tend to develop along the 17th and 18th centuries? Answer in the space below.5.

predominantly middle-class.C. used to express observations of general truth. Key words • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • The Renaissance The Enlightenment The Restoration The Age of Reason The Age of Common Man The Age of Feeling The Augustan Age Neoclassicism modernity tradition change emancipation progress poetry drama prose Glossary • • aphoristic style: (from Greek aphorismos: definition) a style characterised by condensation and precision. noble and heroic characters. and a major influence on their aesthetic ideal. a slow transition took place. Virgil – were revered models for the English Augustan writers. part of the process of modernisation that the Age of Reason came to acknowledge its own limits. and the emergence of the Age of Feeling prepared the way to the Romantic sensibility.” The short review of the dominant forms of poetry. however. Augustan Age: a phrase designating the period of English Neoclassicism (extending from the Restoration to the latter half of the 18th century) by analogy with the golden age of Latin literature.-14 A. blank verse: unrhymed verse. The Great Latin writers of that age – Horace. It is. from a system of genres and styles dominated by classical influences to a more “democratic” tendency. From a literary point of view.).The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background modernity. of serious action. in a caricatural spirit. often by means of paradox. Ovid. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 24 . drama and prose in the 17th and 18th centuries has been meant to offer you a general idea of the literary background of this extremely diverse and dynamic period. with new genres accessible to a more inclusive reading public.D. of the time of emperor Caesar Augustus (27 B. elevated style. which are reduced to the comically trivial. The birth of the novel is the most significant literary development of this “Age of Common Man. burlesque: the exaggerated imitation.

• epic: long narrative poem celebrating the achievements of heroic personages. The victory of the Parliamentary forces led to the abolition of monarchy in 1649. • empiricism: a philosophical orientation which established the primacy of experience in the process of knowledge. individual liberty. social and moral thought. The subjects and heroes are taken either from myth. it evokes an attitude to life which stresses the individual’s dignity. Tolerance.): “Man is the measure of all things”. anti-fanaticism. worth and capacity for self-accomplishment. artistic and literary life of the Renaissance was defined by a revived interest in the classical culture and its ideals. illustrating the close link between religion and politics in English history. pragmatism. It is one of the most flexible and adaptable prose forms. Concepts like human rights. The open conflict between king and Parliament set the whole nation to war. civil rights. • essay: a prose composition of varying length. legend.e. John Locke. rejection of arbitrary authority and of absolutism are some of the characteristic attitudes of this age. anti-obscurantism. and contributed to the intellectual preparation of the French Revolution (1789). when it was restored. until 1660. characterised by anti-dogmatism and the cult of reason as the supreme guiding principle in human action. Thomas Paine (the United States) are among the great representatives of this movement. The founder of the revival of classical learning was Petrarch (see note below).The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Caroline: (from Latin Carolus) related to the reign of Charles I Stuart (1625-1642) • Civil War (1642-1649): the pivotal event of the 17th century. • classical revival: the intellectual.C. social contract. Diderot (France). separation of powers were central to Enlightenment political. the folk tradition. state church) as a reaction against the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 25 • . or from history. • Evangelical Revival: a trend which started within the Anglican Church (the official. the conviction that reality is ordered according to laws that are accessible to human reason). In a broader sense. in which personal opinions and observations are presented in a formal or informal manner. natural law. David Hume (Britain). reconciling a materialist account of reality with a rationalist attitude (i. • Elizabethan: related to the reign of Elizabeth I (1558-1603). Voltaire. This return to the Ancients is the foundation of Renaissance humanism. Thomas Jefferson. which began as an educational programme (the humanities – humaniora) propagating those values in Greek and Latin culture which could be harmonised with Christian values. The founders of English empiricism were Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) and John Locke (1632-1704). humanism. and by the search for a model of society in which man’s rights and duties should be exercised in freedom. Thinkers like Thomas Hobbes. by the promotion of intellectual emancipation and the belief in social and moral progress. Rousseau. widely used in all ages. • Enlightenment: ideological and cultural movement in the 18th century in Europe and America. Montesquieu. the humanism of the Renaissance refers to a view of life which we find summarised in the maxim of the Greek philosopher Protagoras (480-410 B.

The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • • • excessive rationalism in matters of faith. The most famous author of masques in the 17th century (when the genre flourished) was Ben Jonson. but also in Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 26 .C. mock-heroic style: a style mocking the serious grandeur of the epic. with an elaborate stanza structure and a dignified.) and the Latin poet Horace (658 B. spectacular scenic effects. In architecture.) are the great ancient models for English writers. It was used in order to make a trivial subject seem dignified and impressive. This religious orientation developed into a church: the Methodist Church. encouraging a personal experience of conversion. The basis of this kind of faith was the Gospel (the New Testament) and its revealed truth. James II Stuart. solemn style. sumptuous costumes and settings. who was a Catholic. mystery plays: early popular forms of English drama (13th to 16th century) developed out of the Liturgy of the Church and enacting biblical events. Its conventions may be found not only in lyric poetry. the marginal sections of society. and soon developed into a distinct religious orientation. simple. involving elaborate dialogue. and corresponded to the rationalistic spirit of the 18th century.C. singing and dancing. The actors used masks and personified pastoral or mythological figures. The term also refers to the form in which such a work was published: a booklet with paper covers. The accession of William III (of Orange) and his wife Mary (James’s Protestant daughter) marked the beginning of constitutional monarchy in England (monarchic power was limited and the Parliament’s prerogatives increased).). often of an allegorical nature. pastoral: a literary composition on a rural theme. in harmony with nature. and harmony of classical art. Neoclassicism meant a return to the purity. Neoclassicism flourished in the latter half of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. the Neoclassic period is taken to cover almost a century (16601780). In English literature. It addressed itself to the poor. idealising shepherd life and creating a nostalgic image of a peaceful. Glorious Revolution: in 1688. pamphlet: a short prose work on a subject (often political or religious) that the author defends polemically. uncorrupted life. expressing lofty sentiments and thoughts regarding an event. Neoclassicism: an aesthetic doctrine inspired from classical Antiquity (especially Latin). restraint. painting and sculpture. who collaborated with the equally famous architect and stage designer Inigo Jones.C. a person or an object. masque: courtly entertainment in dramatic form. was forced to leave the throne and fled to France. from the Creation to the Ascension. The Greek poet Pindar (522-442 B. whose authors were deeply revered and were recommended as models. and it was often a device of parody and of burlesque. to its need for clarity and its aspiration to universality. founded by John Wesley in the 1740s. The origins of pastoral are in the work of the Greek poet Theocritus (316-260 B. Jacobean: (from Latin Jacobus) related to the reign of James I Stuart (1603-1625). ode: an extended lyric poem. an idea. of spiritual regeneration by grace. decorative art.

of America. effort. romance or the novel. They propagated a doctrine of spiritual equality and cultivated a stern morality. From a literary point of view. Thomas More. It placed emphasis on the individual’s spiritual autonomy and creative potential. Raphael. 27 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . by Columbus. Francis Bacon (England). especially their work ethics. it had not fully reformed itself. Leonardo da Vinci. of the rebirth of learning. favoured the growth of individualism. The most outstanding of the Restoration Wits (or Court Wits) were George Villiers. in their view. pre-Romantic: the term is sometimes used to refer to the literary tendencies which accompanied the rise of the cult of Feeling in the 18th century. It is sometimes seen as extending to the end of the 17th century. The Puritans insisted on man’s duty of actively serving God and on his responsibility towards his own conscience. Pico della Mirandola. consisting in a tremendous development and transformation in all spheres. Romantic: the Romantic Age in England is usually considered to extend from the end of the 18th century to the 1830s. when monarchy was re-established in England after the Puritan rule (1649-1660). John Vanbrugh. it overlaps with the Augustan Age. Sir Charles Sedley. Puritans: members of a Protestant religious group. 1492). in the 16th and 17th centuries. Edmund Spenser. thus. selected according to genre and subject. which opened the modern era. which was to play an essential role in the rise of capitalism. the sense of purpose. Duke of Buckingham. Ariosto. Desiderius Erasmus (Holland). Restoration: historically. Their beliefs and convictions. which was the ultimate authority in the interpretation of God’s word in the Holy Scriptures. “The poetry of sensibility” is another generic term for these pre-Romantic tendencies. who rejected the authority of the English Church because.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • drama. of the expansion of education. poetic diction: a term that. implied the idea that the language of poetry is different in quality from ordinary language. Prominent figures of the Renaissance are Petrarch. “Wit” designates here the person who displays liveliness and brilliance of spirit. industry. Machiavelli. and of the awakening of the reformist spirit. It is the period of transition from the Middle Ages and the feudal order to early capitalism. it was the period of Charles II’s reign (1660-1685). Restoration Wits: the generic name for the Restoration dramatists. tone. centred on integrity. It was characterised by a remarkable flourishing of arts and literature. Sir George Etherege. Philip Sidney. Tasso (Italy). William Wycherley. Lope de Vega.g. Shakespeare. and they continued to be used in the 18th century. Boccaccio. It refers to the particular kind of language – vocabulary. for the Neoclassic writers. on the enlargement of his knowledge of himself and of nature. its limits are less well defined. The Renaissance was the age of the great geographical discoveries (e. Cervantes (Spain). style – used by a poet. and brilliant accomplishments in scholarship and science. Renaissance: cultural movement which started in Italy in the 14th century and spread to Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries.

The sonnet sequence/cycle was frequently used during the Renaissance (Sir Philip Sidney. Cicero. the emphasis on the spontaneity of poetic inspiration are also among distinctive features of Romanticism. according to a dominating inclination or passion. This theory had a great influence on the conception of character in the 16th and 17th century comedy. He started his literary career as a playwright. with various rhyme patterns. and a firm believer in man’s creative potential. yellow bile – or choler. one of the most influential literary voices of his age. Francis (1561-1626): the most influential thinker of the English Renaissance. The tradition survived into the 18th century. philosopher and writer. in which the characters act. the capacity or talent of making unexpected. phlegmatic. The New Atlantis (published in 1627). orator. In mediaeval and Renaissance physiology and pathology. Astrophil and Stella. poet and scholar. sonnet: a poem consisting of 14 lines. it meant intelligence or wisdom.e. the four “humours” (i. Edmund Spenser.C. phlegm. During the Renaissance. Amoretti. 1591-1595).): Roman statesman. fluids) of the body (blood. Marcus Tullius (106-43 B. His literary work includes a series of essays on a wide variety of subjects. Ben (1572-1637): dramatist. His famous political speeches and writings Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 28 . Jonson. independently of circumstances. The assertion of the self. Sometimes. the belief in the spiritual correspondence between man and nature. the quality of a writing that displays this capacity. wit: intellectual brilliance and ingenuity. The four traditional temperaments – sanguine. the founder of modern rationalist materialism. and with the French Revolution (1789). 1591. two fine examples of comedy of humours. choleric and melancholic – were seen as the result of the dominance of one of these humours. Gallery of personalities • Bacon. Romanticism reacted against the rationalist empiricism of the Enlightenment by an intense idealism and the cult of Imagination as man’s supreme faculty of the mind. Renaissance dramatists used songs in their plays to create a particular atmosphere. in the 17th century it came to mean fancy or liveliness of thought and imagination. song: a poem composed for singing. in which he anticipates many of the later conquests of modern science.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • Romanticism is a European cultural and literary movement. He was also an eminent statesman. and a writer. with or without musical accompaniment. which emerged in Britain in the context of the sympathy with the struggle of the American colonies for independence from British domination (1775-1781). The Romantic spirit is usually associated with the championship of progressive social and political causes. as well as an unfinished utopia. with Every Man in His Humour (1598) and Every Man Out of His Humour (1599). the promoter of the new scientific spirit. and black bile – or melancholy) were believed to determine a person’s disposition and character. surprising associations.

Theophrastus (372-287 B. insists on man’s perfect freedom in the state of nature. the “body politic” created in perfect analogy with the “body natural” of “that rational and most excellent work of nature. author.D. besides the Characters. For Hobbes. writer and statesman. Lucius Annaeus (4 B. ethics. or the Matter. chief figure of the scientific revolution of the 17th century. Both Hobbes and Locke can be seen as the initiators of the “social contract” theory. Italian poet and humanist. Isaac (1642-1727): English physicist. It is fear of death. the latter. that determines man to surrender part of his natural rights to the authority of a civil government.C. politics. greatly influenced by Hobbes.): Greek philosopher and naturalist. made important discoveries in the field of optics. Hobbes applies rationalist-materialist principles to the explanation of human nature and society. Petrarch: Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374).” A fundamental problem for Hobbes is that of the foundation of the social and political order. Ecclesiastical and Civil (1651). Locke insists on the mutual obligations of the individual and the instituted authority. in a kind of social contract. but he was interested in a variety of intellectual fields: philosophy. Thomas (1588-1679): materialist philosopher. for instance. whose conceptions were profoundly influenced by the development of physics and mathematics. Locke studied medicine. unlike that of Hobbes. Man. Tacitus.D.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • on rhetoric and style provided a model of eloquence in prose.): Roman philosopher. In his work of moral and political philosophy Leviathan. the instinct of self-preservation. the initiator of the revival of the study of ancient Greek and Latin literature. Locke was a firm supporter of the Glorious Revolution and of constitutional monarchy. and man’s agreement to submit to a governing authority is an expression of that freedom. Hobbes. whose concise and trenchant style inspired 17th century English prose writers.C. Seneca. John (1632-1704): considered the “father” of English empiricism. humanity in the state of nature is driven by aggressive competition. Form and Power of a Commonwealth. His political philosophy. economics. which was central to Enlightenment thought. and Hobbes describes this generalised state of war by the famous formula “homo homini lupus” (“man is wolf to man”). studied the mechanics of planetary motion and formulated the law of gravitation.): Roman historian and statesman. He laid the foundations of the differential calculus. Locke. astronomer and philosopher.-65 A. Newton. must guarantee man’s natural right to liberty and life. According to him. the laws and regulations of human society imitate the laws of nature: the “great Leviathan” is the State. of the first treatise of ancient philosophy. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 29 . Publius Cornelius (55-120 A. religion. mathematician. and his political doctrine inspired the American constitution.

there was a tendency towards simplicity. Pope. even extravagant style of the Renaissance to the simple elegance. 5. 115-141) 30 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .F. Donne. b. 6. The Literature of the Beginnings. concision and plainness: from the highly ornate. .T. Milton. English Literature and Civilisation. 2003 (pp. Marvell.F. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. Carew. 6.T.T. Editura Universităţii Suceava. Goldsmith comedy of manners: the “Restoration Wits” (George Villiers. Sir George Etherege.T SAQ 2 a. c.F SAQ 5 • • • • • • • SAQ 6 In general.T. clarity and straightforwardness of the Augustan style. Editura Universităţii Suceava. Macsiniuc. John Vanbrugh). The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică.2. Goldsmith. Cowley. John Gay Further reading 1.T.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. Dryden. artificial. 3. 4. Gray the epic: Milton metaphysical poetry: Donne. Ioan-Aurel (ed.T. Goldsmith.4.T. Herrick. Duke of Buckingham. d. 2.3. Blake the ode: Marvell. 2. Herbert. Pope didactic poems: Pope philosophical poems: Pope descriptive-meditative poems: Thomson. Sir George Sedley.T.F. Turcu. from a highly rhetorical style to forms of expression which aspired to the plainness of common speech. Marvell satire: Dryden.F. Cumberland burlesque comedy: George Villiers. Dryden. 7-49) 3. Thomson. 7. Preda. 3. 8. Fletcher and Beaumont satirical comedy: Ben Jonson. precision. 2003 (pp. Cowper romantic comedy: Shakespeare dark comedy: Shakespeare tragi-comedy: Shakespeare. Milton the pastoral: Milton. Pope. 9-32) 2. Collins. The English Eighteenth Century.1 SAQ 3 • • • • • • • • • SAQ 4 1. Fielding. 1983 (pp. The Novel in Its Beginnings. 5.). Cornelia. Sheridan sentimental comedy: Steele. the sonnet: Shakespeare. Luminiţa Elena. 4. William Wycherley.

2.5. 2.2.3. 2.The late Renaissance and the Baroque UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE Unit Outline 2 2. 2.3. Unit objectives The late Renaissance and the Baroque The emergence of the baroque sensibility The late Renaissance: characteristics of the baroque sensibility Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry Shakespeare’s genius. 2.3.1. 2. 2.1.10.3. His later plays The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s great tragedies Hamlet: a revenge play Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility in Hamlet Hamlet: the philosopher vs. 2. 2.2.3.7.4.1.6.1. 2.3.2.11. 2.2.7. 2.2.2.2. 2.1.3. 2.2.1.9. 2. 2.3. 2.8.3.2. 2.4. 2.3.2. the man of action King Lear: the madness of tragic grief To be or to seem: Othello Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience Shakespeare’s last plays The plot of The Tempest Major themes Symbols in The Tempest The play-metaphor The metaphysical poets Characteristics of metaphysical poetry The metaphysical conceit Themes in John Donne’s poetry Donne’s love poems Donne’s religious poems Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode Nature as “mystic book” in Marvell’s poetry The theme of love in Marvell’s poems Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 32 32 32 33 33 35 36 37 37 38 39 40 40 43 43 44 46 46 47 48 48 49 50 52 53 54 54 56 56 57 58 59 61 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 31 .3.2. 2. 2.2. 2. 2.5. 2.2.2.6.12.8.2. 2.

The vision of a harmonious. The Elizabethan age: the English high Renaissance Features of the high Renaissance spirit 32 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . idealism and confidence gave way to a growing sense of disorder and violence. In the late Renaissance. stable and modern state. well-ordered universe. The spirit that dominated this age was typical of the Renaissance. during whose reign England developed into a strong. The former expansiveness. to the perception of man as a bundle of contradictions and the view of the universe as threatened by instability.The late Renaissance and the Baroque By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ define the characteristic aspects of the baroque sensibility ♦ compare the Renaissance and the baroque visions on man and the universe ♦ compare aspects of Renaissance and baroque literary taste in the 17th century ♦ explain the baroque character of the main themes and motifs in Shakespeare’s tragedies ♦ identify patterns of symbolism and imagery in the studied plays by Shakespeare ♦ describe the main features of metaphysical poetry ♦ explain what a metaphysical conceit is ♦ analyse the use of conceits in poems by John Donne and Andrew Marvell ♦ point out the elements of baroque sensibility in the poetry of Donne and Marvell Unit objectives 2. anxiety and even pessimism. with its sense of confidence and optimism. Under Queen Elizabeth I.1. but the outstanding achievements of writers like Thomas Kyd*. Renaissance England reached the climax in its flourishing. Christopher Marlowe*. Increasingly prosperous and powerful owing to colonial expansion and economic progress. Elizabethan England also witnessed an explosion of creative energies in the field of letters and arts. this spirit declined under the pressure of certain historical events* and cultural tendencies. Philip Sydney*. to scepticism. High Renaissance English literature has its most accomplished expression in Shakespeare’s work. the enormous vitality nourished by the trust in man’s powers – these are general features of the high Renaissance spirit that found their expression in literature as well. The emergence of the baroque sensibility The early and high Renaissance* in England developed under the Tudor monarchs*. and Edmund Spenser* complete the literary picture of the glorious Elizabethan Age. the sense of tradition as a guarantee for order.

or the world as stage. a tendency commonly associated with the baroque is represented by the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. on which the “show” of life must end. The best examples are Thomas Kyd’s revenge tragedy.2. in literature. irony and ambiguity. the tragic divisions in man’s soul. contrasts with the baroque taste for the extravagant. life and death. refinement and cruelty. The Renaissance cult of rational order. wisdom and madness. Although very diverse. the Baroque displayed a sharp consciousness of life’s ephemerality. and. destroyed by the monstrous excess of their ambition. reason and superstition. Characteristic of the baroque spirit are the sense of ethical relativism and the exploration of the borderline between truth and illusion. of confusing or transgressing limits. with its abundance of bloody deaths. The late Renaissance: characteristics of the baroque sensibility The baroque* sensibility that emerged during the late Renaissance registered with particular acuteness the conflicts and turbulences in man’s existence. to the macabre. Paul’s Cathedral in London (16751708): an example of baroque architecture 2. and in its dramatic conception. In lyric poetry. but also to pomp. the spectacular and the sumptuous. for excess. they are the supreme dramatic achievement of late Renaissance. sensualism and mysticism. but his great tragedies belong not only chronologically to the Jacobean age: as embodiments of the baroque spirit. The Renaissance celebrated Nature and life with its joys. St. the extensive use of paradox.1. The unexpected. striking imagery. ornamental rhetoric and preference for convention and artifice.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. splendour.” these poets distinguish themselves by the ingenuity with which they force the limits of language. the concentration of expression in their poems stand in contrast with the Elizabethan smooth and orderly patterns of versification. and Christopher Marlowe’s characters. the difficult – often irregular – rhythms. Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry The essence of the baroque sensibility is conflict and tension. Shakespeare’s early comedies and history plays* are Elizabethan in spirit.1. and not properly forming a “school. both in its themes and motifs. Even the Elizabethan dramatists cultivated elements which announced the Baroque. with the tendency of breaking proportions. grandeur. the paradoxes and contrasts which make up man’s mixed nature. nothing reflects better its emergence than drama. proportion and symmetry. capable of rendering its 33 Revenge tragedy Metaphysical poetry Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Characteristic baroque themes were those of life as dream and life as theatre. The baroque vision of experience of the Metaphysical Poets required a new kind of poetic language. of man’s limitations and the inevitability of death. The Jacobean and Caroline drama* is essentially baroque. its sense of form.1. The Baroque displays attraction to obscurity and melancholy.

classical balance. you will be acquainted. R: vision of the world as harmonious and well-ordered B: 2. at the end of this unit. as well as some of the metaphysical poems of John Donne and Andrew Marvell. In the following two subchapters. The Tempest. Metaphysical poetry blends passion and reason. 34 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . complicated feeling and analytical detachment. with the two most relevant accomplishments of the late Renaissance English literature: William Shakespeare’s great tragedies (Hamlet. R: celebration of life’s joys B: 3. SAQ 1 Fill in the spaces left below with those features of the Baroque (B) which contrast with the following features of the high Renaissance (R): 1.The late Renaissance and the Baroque complexities. If there should be major differences. and it is appealing simultaneously to the sensibility and the intellect of the reader. read again the preceding subchapters. King Lear. optimism. R: confidence. as expressions of the baroque spirit of the age. Othello and Macbeth) and his last romance play. sense of form B: 4. R: cult for order and symmetry. exuberance B: Compare your answers to those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. respectively.

Shakespeare’s genius. all mastered with supreme art. These plays may be seen as strongly influenced by the emerging baroque sensibility in their themes. romantic or trivial.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. Shakespeare’s whole work is a synthesis of the concerns and convictions of the Renaissance. which brought him enormous success during his lifetime. in which every character – major or minor – has a consistent individuality and is animated by passions. moral attitudes. envy. and the range of his subjects is extremely diverse. and French. gratitude and ingratitude. King Lear and Macbeth (1605). transcending the artistic hierarchy of his age and consecrating him as always “our contemporary. aspirations and interests. They are always credible. in the great blank verse* soliloquies*. struggle for power. His inventiveness and imagination were invested not in the intrigues. Shakespeare modulates the language in each play. or periods of creation. The beginning of the 17th century is also the beginning of his second phase (1600-1608). Italian. sublime or burlesque. medieval and contemporary sources – English. and experiences are given dramatic shape in his plays: love. In Shakespeare’s whole work. but his enduring preeminence has been insured by his extraordinary insight into human nature. among other features. language. His characters emerge from the dramatic situation with an unsurpassed force of conviction. in plain. His later plays Shakespeare’s greatness as a dramatist comes. there is an astonishing variety of styles and registers. He was not original in the use of his subjects: with a few exceptions. but in the creation of characters and the exploration of their mind and heart. to the prose speech of simple folk. conflicts. hate. jealousy. states of mind. from the variety of his work. where the lyrical and dramatic elements are in perfect fusion. search for truth. The richness and profundity of his comprehensive creation establish him as a universal genius. all of them are re-workings and adaptations of subjects taken from a variety of ancient. He was a master of every contemporary dramatic form.” Shakespeare’s work is conventionally divided into several phases. A wide range of feelings. Othello (1604). friendship. when his artistic maturity and depth of vision produced his four monumental tragedies: Hamlet (1601). sometimes even trivial. devotion. loyalty and betrayal. rendered accurately in their poetic truth. and a culmination of its literary art. A whole human universe inhabits Shakespeare’s plays. so that it displays a similar variety. motifs and imagery. his deep understanding of humanity.2. as well as in the tragic grandeur of the inner conflicts that they portray. Shakespeare seems to propose an alternative to the stormy and bloody worlds of his great 35 William Shakespeare (1564-1616) Language in Shakespeare’s plays The second period of creation: the great tragedies Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . craftsmen or servants. According to the dramatic necessity. etc. It ranges from the sublime accents of pure poetry. Shakespeare had a natural instinct for the stage. In his last period of creation (1608-1611). irrespective of the register in which they are conceived – tragic or comic. and a perfect adequacy of the language to the character’s moral nature and to the dramatised experience or emotion.

with the restoration of order. at the end of the unit. The issues that are explored dramatically in Shakespeare’s later tragedies reflect the spirit of uncertainty and increasing scepticism of a baroque age. between truth and falsehood. with the sense of hope overcoming spiritual desolation. How does Shakespeare’s dramatic vision in his last plays differ from that of the tragedies of his second period of creation? Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. as far as his approach to character is concerned? 2. What does Shakespeare’s greatness consist in. with the human endeavour to understand if suffering is part of the 36 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the downfall of the tragic hero is accompanied by the destruction of a natural order. read again the preceding subchapter. but they deal. In these plays. common in the Renaissance. The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s tragedies Shakespeare’s tragedies preserve the pattern of the “fall of princes”*. with the consequences of imperfect knowledge and self-blindness. in no more than 4 lines / 40 words each: 1. but he adds to it philosophical and ethical implications of the deepest significance. basically.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The last period: the romance plays tragedies. are also tributary to the spirit of the Baroque. 2. He is concerned here with the paradoxes in the relationship between reality and appearance. of which The Tempest (1611) is the crowning achievement. with the effects of evil on innocence. with innocence and vitality triumphing over evil and death. His romance plays.1. If they should differ significantly. SAQ 2 Answer the following questions.2. by the chaos arising from the corruption and collapse of values.

rejected by Hamlet in spite of their mutual affection. has drowned herself. Polonius is the father of beautiful Ophelia. generous and brilliantly intelligent. Hamlet hides his terrible grief behind the mask of madness. Hamlet: a revenge play In Hamlet. Upon his return to Denmark from his university studies. old king Hamlet. At one point. bringing in the prospect of renewal and of the restoration of order. he kills Polonius. who was now the new king and who had married Gertrude. that he had actually been poisoned by his brother. young prince Hamlet learns from the ghost of his recently dead father. Claudius’s guilty conscience betrays him. Back to the castle. Hamlet escapes a criminal plot set up by Claudius. brave. required by his dead father. Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility Hamlet has been seen as the embodiment of the ideal Renaissance prince – refined and cultivated.The late Renaissance and the Baroque natural order of things or if it betrays the indifference of Nature – or God – towards man.2. In order to find confirmation for the ghost’s story. It is in these four great tragedies that Shakespeare gives the full proof of his artistic genius. which represents a similar scene of murder. who had really gone mad. he has the occasion to kill Claudius. Hamlet arranges a play to be performed at court. Her brother.2. Young Hamlet is thus confronted with the horrors of fratricide and incest. takes over the rule of Denmark. with a poisoned sword.2. who suspects him of aspiring to take his throne. a courtier. and continually delays the act of revenge. the intensity of poetic expression – especially in the soliloquies – are features that rank these plays highest in the whole history of the genre. the play ends on a note of hope. Hamlet learns that Ophelia. the first in this series of masterpieces. During the play. His Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 37 . Hamlet feels all his certainties destroyed. but refrains from doing it as the latter was in prayer.3. the Norwegian prince and glorious military hero. sensitive and idealistic. mistaking him for Claudius. Confronted with the moral corruption around him. in the confusions of the final scene. In another scene. Shakespeare deals with his great tragic themes in the frame of a revenge tragedy. 2. Claudius. Sent on a diplomatic mission to England. all the main protagonists find their death. absorbed more and more by his consciousness of the paradoxes of his difficult task of exposing the truth. and with the immense burden of revenge. Sir Laurence Olivier in Hamlet (1948) 2. the masterful treatment of highly complex characters. In spite of this bloody outcome. accepts Claudius’s treacherous plan of killing Hamlet during a duel. when Fortinbras. but the plot escapes their control and. as he now sees in her only another embodiment of woman’s frailty. Laertes. The enlargement of meaning through consistent patterns of imagery running throughout each play. the widow queen.

the man of action Hamlet’s penetrating spirit has discerned a reality of human nature that he had not suspected. is eminently a philosopher’s effort. as well as the indicated fragment. His effort to see beyond the veil of illusion. and this may explain his indefinite postponing of the revenge. the balance and confidence of the Renaissance man have been replaced by scepticism and mistrust. revealing Hamlet’s dualistic vision.2. his obsessive quest for truth and certainty. It allows the hero to take distance from the corrupt order of the “prison” that Denmark has become for him. Compare your answer with the suggestions offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The sign of this confusion is the typically baroque motif of Hamlet’s madness. from the Reader contains a short meditation on man and the universe. 2. in which all the values on which he had relied have lost their meaning. which is only partly dissimulated. Hamlet: the philosopher vs. SAQ 3 Text 2. 38 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . What is the essence of this divided view? Formulate your answer in the space left below. If they should differ significantly.1. at the end of the unit. read again the preceding subchapter. and this makes him now aware of the ironies and ambiguities inherent in the discrepancy between what is and what seems. Madness becomes the refuge of the sensitive conscience from moral chaos.4. In Hamlet’s tormented soul.The late Renaissance and the Baroque new consciousness that “something’s rotten in Denmark” plunges him into a nightmare. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words.

Cordelia. the quest for higher meanings. unconditionally loving ones. there is madness in nature itself. of human suffering. as his father has been deceived by his other son Edmund. Lear strives to understand the roots of evil. He is also accompanied by the faithful Earl of Kent in disguise and by the Court Fool. The storm outside matches the storm in Lear’s hurt soul. to the themes of knowledge and self-knowledge. if there is a purpose for its existence in the world of man. Lear’s own madness. Maddened with grief. Lear becomes the victim of the ingratitude of his two elder daughters. His intellectual energies are now concentrated in his search for the meaning of the ultimate questions of life and death. is also an exile from his own family. Edgar. whom he disinherits. of truth and illusion. which has been interpreted in innumerable ways. Hamlet’s introspective. which helps him endure his suffering. who is disguised as a lunatic beggar. an outburst of violence which evokes to Lear the cruelty of his daughters. like Lear’s daughter Cordelia. who deprive him of all prerogatives and turn him out of their castles. after his eyes have been put out for having helped Lear.2. is closely linked. son of Lear’s loyal supporter. starts with a folk tale motif: old Lear plans to leave his kingdom to his three daughters if he is pleased with their declarations of love. which would not undo the past. The motif of madness. Shakespeare develops the theme of evil by contrasting the natural order of the moral universe with the chaos produced by the 39 Storm and madness Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which is that of restoring a lost order. and. marks in fact a growth in his moral understanding. King Lear: the madness of tragic grief King Lear. the Earl of Gloucester.5. Disappointed by the reticence of his youngest daughter. The storm scenes in the play contain the highest symbolic concentration. exiled Lear wanders in a terrible storm in the company of Edgar. are skilfully brought together and create a new ironic dimension in the play. Tragically. Edgar. both of them prove to be the loyal. of setting right again the “time” which is “out of joint. The earl of Gloucester joins them. Hamlet feels overwhelmed by the real task that he is called to fulfil. a bastard. questioning side is exacerbated by the irruption of evil in a universe that he had thought well-ordered. is the victim of a staged play of appearances. Goneril and Reagan. like that of blindness.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The delay of Hamlet’s revenge his incapacity to act.” 2. on the other hand. through paradox. These explorations become more important than the technical matter of revenge. which hide much wisdom under the appearance of playful nonsense. and he is thus reunited with his son without knowing it. in reality. he is wondering: “Is there a cause in nature that makes these hard hearts?” Edgar’s disguised madness. as in Hamlet. another “fall of princes” tragedy. and the Fool’s comments. to believe him a traitor and usurper.

a brave and honest general of the Venetian republic. is led by Iago to believe his wife. Scene from Othello. Shakespeare gives a special intensity to this theme by dealing with evil in the context of the most natural of human relationships: kinship (relations by blood or by marriage). evil succeeds precisely because of the perfection of Desdemona’s purity and Othello’s trusting nature. As a result of Iago’s manipulations. unfaithful. and its outburst is always accompanied by the awakening of the tragic hero’s consciousness of the divorce between seeming and being. painted by James Graham (early 17th century) 40 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 2. essence. Othello is thrown into the terrible agony of suspecting that beauty and innocence might disguise corruption. In Othello. Othello. faithfulness/betrayal. acting against it. Evil is that which destroys Nature.6. Claudius’s fratricide and the cruelty of Lear’s daughters are transgressions which turn the tragic hero’s world upside down.2. The noble protagonist. innocence/guilt. the bond of a love marriage is the frame in which Shakespeare explores the theme of evil in connection with that of appearance vs. Desdemona. With his mind poisoned by a false evidence of Desdemona’s infidelity. and the tragic disaster shows how the play of appearances can dissolve firm moral opposites like truth/lie. and this destroys his confidence in a moral order.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Evil as destruction of the “natural” order unnatural acts which violate this order. Othello kills her and takes his own life when her innocence is proved to him. In Othello. To be or to seem: Othello Evil coming from those who are naturally closest to us is intolerable.

kills the sleeping king and takes the throne. The evil reverberates in the whole land: in the words of Malcolm. who has a trusting nature.2. kinsman and guest.” The imagery* of disease is extended to the protagonist’s conscience.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 4 Each of the following sentences refers to one or several of the three tragedies mentioned so far. There is “no sweet oblivious antidote” to cure Lady Macbeth’s “diseased” mind either. paradoxically.6. and unmotivated violence and cruelty. The storm scenes intensify symbolically the hero’s tragic sense of confusion. Read them carefully and fill in the indicated space with the right title(s). ____________________ 4. illusion and truth. at the end of the unit. Macbeth’s conscience soon starts accusing him. “Our country sinks beneath the yoke. The protagonist. The hero’s exacerbated introspective tendency makes him postpone action. invaded by “horrible imaginings” and hallucinations.2. but. Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience In Macbeth. 2. it bleeds. and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds. one of Duncan’s sons. ____________________ 2. he multiples his crimes. ____________________ 3. since it accompanies the hero’s revelation of the discrepancy between appearance and reality. disorder. is manipulated into confusion about truth and falsehood.2. you need to revise subchapters 2. Macbeth’s ambitions are inflamed by the prediction of three witches that he shall be king of Scotland. a brave and worthy general in Duncan’s army. / It weeps. and she is destroyed by the unbearable Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 41 . the horror of evil is amplified by the fact that the protagonist’s crime is committed against Duncan as his king. underlining the theme of knowledge. arranging the murder of all those who might threaten his power. If any of your solutions should not correspond. which constitutes a violation of the natural (therefore moral) order.7. The effects of this sacrilege against Nature are devastating. ____________________ Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. Macbeth. 1. innocence and corruption. ____________________ 5. at the instigation of his wife. The theme of evil is dramatised as a crime against the bonds of blood. Persuaded by his wife to hasten the fulfillment. to 2. The baroque motif of madness is.

in which he fights to the end with the same determination that had brought him the glory of a hero at the beginning of the play. reveals how soon the abominable crime has begun to work on his spirit.The late Renaissance and the Baroque burden of sin. How can we interpret Macbeth’s hallucination about the voice crying “Sleep no more. 42 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . from which the ultimate relief is suicide. in no more than 120 words / 12 lines. and he meets his punishment in the final battle. / Macbeth does murder sleep. Shakespeare’s shortest and most poetic tragedy reveals the incalculable effects of the darkness with which destiny may cloud the moral conscience of a noble hero. His words to Lady Macbeth render his first thoughts after the murder. read the fragment once more.” heard immediately after he has committed the murder? What does sleep represent for Macbeth here? Answer in the space left below. scene 2. If there should be significant differences. Macbeth’s heroic strength of will enables him to survive the terrible inner torments.2. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. Macbeth joins his wife after he has killed Duncan. who ends up by losing the belief in any meaning of life. extracted from this scene. Text 2. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 5 In Act II. from the Reader.

The Tempest (1611). Prospero is the former and legitimate duke of Milan. to take his throne. The Winter’s Tale. usurped by his brother Antonio and forced into exile twelve years before.2. the master of an island. marvelous. king of Naples. and certain themes and motifs (e. the fairy-tale atmosphere. who instantly fall in love with each other. In a plot-line that parallels and parodies the latter. They may also be described as romance plays. Three lines of action develop. has turned him into a slave. He had long studied the arts of magic. They mix serious and comic action. 43 John William Waterhouse: Miranda –The Tempest (1916) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . One of these sub-plots involves the courtiers: Antonio persuades Sebastian to kill his sleeping brother. while for physical labour he uses Caliban. Alonzo. respectively –. In its opening scene. separated from each other in various parts of the island and all believing the others dead. magic. Caliban hates and fears Prospero. Trinculo. owing to the improbability of the action. as well as other passengers. Shakespeare’s last plays Shakespeare’s four plays belonging to his last period of creation (1608-1611) – Pericles. 2.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. the pronounced elements of the supernatural. and The Tempest – are described either as tragi-comedies or as romance plays. the last expression of Shakespeare’s mature genius. After the tragedies. myth. is considered the finest. his faithful spiritservant. the choice of a remote setting. We soon find out that the storm and shipwreck have been magically provoked by Prospero. It is also in these last plays that Shakespeare’s dramatic imagination relies to a greater extent on symbolism. The plot of The Tempest Of these four plays. a creature whose beastly nature is beyond Prospero’s attempt of educating him. Sebastian and Ferdinand – Alonzo’s brother and son. but his plan is prevented by Ariel’s music. Another sub-plot brings together Ferdinand and Miranda. a storm wrecks the ship carrying Antonio. and Sebastian. the long journey. and his supernatural powers have given him control over both the natural elements and the spirits.8. their plots contain characteristic ingredients like dangers which are finally avoided. who. by his powers.2. of exile and return). His acts of magic are fulfilled through Ariel. these plays offer patterns of reconciliation and positive solutions to life’s contradictions. the jester. the shipwreck.9. or tension and suspense followed by happy reversals – features that make them tragi-comedies. are encouraged by Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the rule of the island. Cymbeline. the sense of a benevolent providential design. the theme of loss and recovery. a drunken servant. Miranda. involving the shipwrecked characters. on which he lives alone with his daughter.g. duke of Milan. Alonzo.

Prospero plans a safe return to Naples for the wedding of Miranda and Ferdinand.” he had also failed to see his brother’s true character. In the final act. he regains his authority and learns again the arts of power. assumes a certain responsibility for his own dethronement: absorbed in his studies. he has a change of heart and sees in the union of the lovers a possibility of reconciliation and of a new beginning. more importantly. He forgives his treacherous brother and those involved in his usurpation. now.10. At the opposite pole. education] can never stick.” who can be controlled only by the art of magic. the scholar-magician. Prospero. Caliban Innocence vs. who now repent. who reveals himself to them as “the wronged duke of Milan.” “on whose nature / Nurture [i. and it is significant that this act is accompanied by his decision to abandon his magic. On the island. The grossest instincts of human nature and a fundamental viciousness are symbolically embodied in the grotesque figure of Caliban. Major themes An important theme in The Tempest is that of the nature of power. he learns. While Caliban and the plotting courtiers and servants demonstrate that both nature and society are capable of corruption.” claiming his throne. and to return to the world in his full humanity. Ariel.e. and then to Milan. in Ferdinand and Miranda civilisation and nature are united in their most innocent forms.2. a “thing of darkness. influenced by Ariel.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Prospero’s initial plan had been revenge. for the emergence of a regenerated world. “neglecting worldly ends. but. to break his staff (symbol of supernatural power) and to drown his book (symbol of supernatural knowledge). whose youth and innocence are the premises for the undoing of the wrongs of the past. Ariel is commanded to bring all the characters before Prospero. Prospero’s project acquires a wider dimension through the union of Ferdinand and Miranda. or of the wickedness of the servant turning against his master. represents pure spirit. one of Shakespeare’s most fascinating creations. evil Elizabeth Green – Ariel: The Tempest (1922) 44 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The power of innocence to redeem evil and restore order and the values of humanity is another important theme. The theme of power Ariel vs. His act of forgiveness is the highest demonstration of princely power. the control of intelligence over nature. the personification of Prospero’s imagination. 2. Evil is not absent in The Tempest: there are echoes of Shakespeare’s previous plays in the motif of the usurping brother planning murder. to master himself. at the end.

extracted from The Tempest. for instance. by teaching him to speak. read the fragment again. Caliban answers that the only benefit of being able to speak is that he can now curse Prospero..4. Prospero reminds Caliban that he did his best to raise him from his animal condition. of the role of language in acquiring knowledge. or in developing self-identity. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Act I. Formulate your answer in 150 words / 15 lines.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 6 Read Text 2. Here. more carefully. scene 2. Full of resentment. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. What implications can you find in their exchange of replies? You may think. If there should be major differences. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 45 .

The playmetaphor. It is through the perfection of Ariel’s art that Prospero re-establishes the moral law in the world to which he can now return. Ariel – illustration to the 1873 edition of The Works of Shakespeare 46 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .” The sea-journey Music 2. order and harmony. The play-metaphor The action in The Tempest is practically managed by Prospero. is frequent in Shakespeare’s plays. and it even contains (like Hamlet) a play within the play: a masque* performed as a celebration of Ferdinand and Miranda’s engagement. music suggests harmony and the power of the spirit to purify human nature. The whole play insists on the idea of spectacle. Another pervading symbol is that of music. and prevents the wicked plots of both the courtiers and the drunken servants. The sea-journey and shipwreck are the symbols of a “sea change”*. Music is not only a necessary element in the spectacular quality of The Tempest. but an important symbolic ingredient in its major events. It is through music that he calms down the fury of the waters. Even Caliban seems to be responsive to the “sounds and sweet airs” of the island. manipulates the characters and prescribes the ending. In opposition with the convulsions and dangers of the tempest. which “delight and hurt not. a profound spiritual transformation and growth.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.2. then at least man should strive to discern in it. and it is constantly associated with the magic actions of Ariel. the same features as those of the Renaissance aesthetic ideal: beauty. suggests the victory of life over death and of spirit over the elemental power of nature. The title itself points to the importance of the symbolism of the sea-journey. The miraculous survival of the ship’s passengers. This emphasis on spectacle and its power to reveal truths by its illusion constitutes a baroque element in The Tempest.11. Shakespeare’s last masterpiece seems to suggest that if life is transient like a theatre performance. or to impose upon it. sublimating its primitive energies. whose magic art controls every incident. of performance. Symbols in The Tempest Several symbolic elements contribute to the treatment of the themes in The Tempest.2. the association of life with the insubstantiality and briefness of a theatre show. comforts Ferdinand’s despair when he thinks his father dead. Prospero also needs “some heavenly music” to accomplish the final act of his plan.12.

at the end of the unit. Prospero intends to use his magic power and supernatural knowledge in his regained authority as duke of Milan. Their styles are different. in his own way. but each of them. and this makes them both masters of metaphysical wit. T F 7. T F 3. except that of terrifying him. The betrayal of his brother and the plotting of the courtiers on the island were severely punished by Prospero. revise subchapters2. of which three are false. Two essential symbolic elements contribute to the development of the theme of regeneration: the sea-journey and music. The metaphysical poets The term metaphysical. The power of music has no effect on Caliban. T F 2. staged and managed by Prospero through his magic art. T F 5. T F 6.2.9 to 2.3.12. applied to certain poets of the early and mid-seventeenth century. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false) for each sentence.” and many disliked its cultivated difficulty. If any of your choices should be wrong. T F 4. The contemporaries referred to their poetry as “strong lines. combines an outstanding intellectual brilliance with lyric grace. A baroque feature of The Tempest is the emphasis on the theatrical quality of the action. 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 47 . You must find them among the following statements. 1.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 7 Let us remember a few things about The Tempest. Ferdinand and Miranda represent the innocent young generation capable of renewing Prospero’s former world. T F Make sure your answers are right by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. was first intended to bring discredit on them. Prospero had lost his power as the duke of Milan because his studies distanced him from the immediate world which he was supposed to rule.2. John Donne and Andrew Marvell illustrate best the baroque sensibility of the 17th century in their themes and expressive strategies.

There is always a connection between the abstract and the concrete. In spite of its logical. with patterns of rhythms closer to those of spoken language than to the requirements of literary tradition.e. The reader is expected to approach such a poem with an active mind. as “a combination of dissimilar images.” A new kind of poetry emerged. argumentative quality. often extended by the use of hyperbole* or oxymoron*. is contemplated from a certain distance. that the poet detaches himself from his own feelings in order to better understand and analyse them. the poet was able to reconcile contradictory states of mind and feeling. united] by violence together. linked. As extended comparisons. The impression is that this experience. from a most ordinary circumstance. which is developed through the exploitation of an image in all its possible implications. a metaphysical poem is not a piece of abstract thinking. The thought goes hand in hand with the feeling. or discovery of occult [i. Characteristics of metaphysical poetry Metaphysical poetry displayed a new quality of writing. Samuel Johnson* was to describe (in 1779) the kind of wit which characterised a metaphysical conceit as discordia concors*. A poem in this tradition is usually focused on an idea or line of argument. The main features of metaphysical poetry are concentration and logical coherence. a cold intellectual exercise. conceits were abundant in Elizabethan dramatic and lyrical poetry. and to unify diverse and even discordant aspects of inner and outer reality into a single experience.1. and which blended expressive conciseness with density of meaning. which starts from a comparison.3. to bring not only his imagination and emotion into play. The metaphysical conceit The poetic device by which such opposites are brought together and reconciled is the conceit. Irrespective of the kind of experience they endeavour to render. which helps the poet to develop his subject. This is an elaborate figurative device. writers had to face a new exigency. “More matter and less words” 2. but metaphysical conceits were far-fetched* comparisons.” as “the most heterogeneous ideas yoked [i.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. as well as in ordering and mastering intense emotion. which was in fact the expression of a new spiritual context. and a blend of the commonplace and the sublime. all metaphysical poets are self-conscious and analytic. but also his reason. secret] resemblances in things apparently unlike. by the ingenuity with which they forced the perception of similarity in the most unexpected elements. hidden. Dr. and the emotions involved. a metaphor or an analogy.2.3. regardless of the subject of the poem. meant to surprise and delight the reader by their wit*. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Discordia concors 48 . Starting with the last decade of the 16th century. and almost always such a poem starts from a very personal situation. a demand for “more matter and less words.” Conceits were effective instruments in developing an argument and in rendering complication and subtlety of thought. By means of conceits.e.

Each answer should not exceed 2 lines / 20 words.3. and allegory. and a highly original one. its decorative use of classical mythology. In the treatment of both themes. Themes in John Donne’s poetry John Donne is one of the most influential poets of the 17th century.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 8 Order the main aspects describing metaphysical poetry into four essential features. In the following subchapters. Two important themes in his poetic work are love and faith.3. Use the space left below.3.3. If they should differ considerably. Donne displays the same sophisticated wit.2. you will look at some famous examples of metaphysical conceits. in poems belonging to John Donne and Andrew Marvell. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 49 . revise subchapters 2. the two most outstanding representatives of this poetic trend in the 17th century. pastoral* conventions. and which confers dramatic realism to his poems. at the end of the unit. ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the same blend of ingenious reasoning and intense passion.1. and both are explored in the whole richness and variety of their possible experiences. and the same realistic force. and created a style which had the vigour and liveliness of colloquial speech. 2. and 2. He rejected the regular versification of Elizabethan poetry .

His love poetry is revolutionary in its rejection of the Petrarchan* conventions of courtly love*. according to which woman was always an unattainable ideal. Donne’s love poems In his love poems. in which the speaker brings all his argumentative skill in support of his attempt to convince the woman to accept physical intimacy. dealing with profound personal feeling and emotion from the distance of intellectual argument.” He tries to persuade his mistress not to kill the flea. but. superior – woman was an object of never fulfilled desire.” their separation must be seen in analogy with cosmic disturbances (“the trepidation of the spheres”). from cynicism and playfulness to passionate sincerity and the celebration of both physical love and spiritual union. he resorts to the extravagant identification of a flea that has bitten both of them with their “marriage bed” and a “marriage temple.3. their love being so great and “refined. and often emphasising the need for mutual love. His approach of the theme of love is more “realistic”: he often glorifies sexuality and the body as important aspects in the experience of love. Donne’s rejection of the Petrarchan tradition A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning The Flea: seduction and wit 50 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Another powerful example of Donne’s use of logical argument in a poem about love is The Flea. beautiful. unattainable lady and enjoy the pleasures of sensuality. Chaste.4. which. sometimes presenting woman as inconstant and unfaithful. in which the lover tries to persuade his mistress not to cry at his imminent departure. he pleads that she should abandon the intransigence of the chaste.” In fact. The poem celebrates the stability and comfort of a secure relationship. These are conceits which illustrate the preference of the metaphysical poets for analogies between the macrocosm and the (human) microcosm. and all that the faithful lover could hope for were symbolic rewards and favours for his constancy and humble submission. A famous poem celebrating shared love is A Valediction*: Forbidding Mourning. Their superior love is founded on spiritual union and is not dependent on physical presence for its survival. The various comparisons and analogies by which he describes their love function as arguments in his plea. and he seems to amuse himself. This is a seduction poem.” “tear-floods”). Donne changes this conventional vision of love. Mingling the trivial with the mystical sublime. when accompanied by genuine feeling. He also suggests sometimes that physical union. though greater. in which their blood is now mixed. are however harmless to man.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. sometimes speaking frankly of his erotic desire. as this would be a triple “sin. Donne adopts a wide range of tones and attitudes. shocking the reader by the unexpected analogy developed in the central conceit (the flea as symbolic marriage bed). Crying over their separation would bring to mind an analogy with earthly disasters (“sigh-tempests. Donne is highly playful in this poem. may afford an experience of the transcendental. carrying the lover’s witty arguments to their logical extremes.

3.2. he develops one of his most famous conceits. paying special attention to the last three stanzas. in the Reader).The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 9 Read Donne’s poem (Text 2. in no more than 18 lines / 180 words.6. Here. which explains what a metaphysical conceit is. If they should differ significantly. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. as well. you need to revise subchapter 2. Explain the surprising analogy that he makes in order to speak about mutual love.. Formulate your answer in the space left below. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 51 . Read the poem again.

between idealised passion and erotic desire. gives this sonnet a particular dramatic intensity. These poems usually display contrary impulses. paradoxical aspects of the experience of love. He fights against his own sense of sin and guilt. as if suggesting that the experience of erotic union is the only way of understanding our relationship with God. in his religious poems the mystery of faith is often explored in erotic terms. The most eloquent example is the sonnet Batter My Heart. in which the delight in witty logical argumentation. Donne’s religious poems Donne’s baroque sensibility is evident in his love poems in the tension between conflicting. In Batter My Heart. Batter My Heart Portrait of John Donne (1572-1631) (author unknown) 52 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . this need is expressed by means of several conceits. The insistence on violence and struggle. Tension and paradox are also explored in his religious poems. In his religious meditations in verse. one of Donne’s nineteen Holy Sonnets. comparable to that of Shakespeare. in which the poet’s desire to abandon himself to God’s love is rendered through paradoxical images.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. resurrection and salvation. in which the poet expresses his deep need for a close relationship with God. divine judgement. which parallel those in his love poetry. Donne’s focus is on his deep sense of sin. Donne’s religious poems often develop an analogy between sexual love and divine love.3. between the need for permanence and the need for variety. in the exercise of reason. Satan. for the divine saving grace.5. on death. which makes him a prisoner of God’s enemy. Actually. If love is often a holy mystery for Donne. of loyalty and betrayal. clashes with the poet’s scepticism that the mystery of faith can be penetrated intellectually. on the paradoxes of freedom and captivity.

5. living through the turbulent years of the Civil War*. Three major themes can be detached from his poetry: love. paradoxical feelings by means of a conceit which exploits metaphorically the contrast between marriage and rape.3. at the end of the unit. In the last six lines. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 53 . Marvell left. 2. If there should be significant differences. Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode The last of the metaphysical poets. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Donne suggests his contradictory. and read the poem again.7. As a Puritan* patriot. the greatest of political poems in English literature: An Horatian Ode* upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland (written in 1650). and love of country. according to some critics. representing Donne’s sonnet Batter My Heart. from the Reader. nature.6. Andrew Marvell combines in his poetic work the sophistication of metaphysical wit with the elegance and grace of classical forms and attitudes.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 10 Read Text 2. revise subchapter 2.3. This meditation on political conflict and national history is impressive by its clarity and controlled variations of tone. How does he use this contrast in order to speak about his religious experience? Analyse this conceit in no more than 12 lines / 120 words.

The carpe diem* motif was popular in Renaissance poetry.e. and thus he can find reason to praise both of them. The theme of love in Marvell’s poetry Of Marvell’s love poems. the most accomplished is To His Coy Mistress. developed then into a complex analogy with the pure Christian soul and its relation with earth and with heaven. Marvell does not portray Oliver Cromwell and his opponent.” associated with his mistress’s preference for a prolonged courtship.” and finally dissolves itself “into the glories of the almighty Sun. Although loyal to the Puritan cause.” whose visible beauties are the key to spiritual truths. these details as emblems of a transcendent reality. shyness] and accept his passionate love. What begins as a nature poem is extended into a religious poem by means of a metaphysical conceit. which illustrates the poet’s skill in combining the playful and the serious. aspiring to union with almighty God. On the other hand. The most illustrative poem. His nature poems have usually a mystical tendency.3. for fear that it might grow] impure. The speaker’s argument opposes the “deserts of vast eternity.3. Just as the dew-drop is “trembling. pictured with remarkable precision. Victorious Cromwell is admirable for his fiery spirit and the courage with which he assumed the task to “cast the kingdoms old / Into another mould” (i. behaving with royal grace in his last minute. Marvell emphasises the dignity with which the defeated king met his fate. lest it grow [i.e. a masterpiece of metaphysical wit. as if Nature itself were a “mystic book. on the scaffold. Nature as “mystic book” Another side of Marvell’s poetic personality is illustrated by his nature poetry. He showed a deep love for the countryside. Marvell often sees. reveals thus its symbolic dimension to the poet’s contemplative mind. Gifted with a sharp sense of observation of natural detail. On a Drop of Dew 2.” so the Christian Soul denies the earth and its “impure” pleasures. in this respect.8. in which both of them act according to a divine order.e.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Andrew Marvell (1621-1678) Its classical perfection manages to hold in balance the ambivalence of attitude and the complication of thought characteristic of the metaphysical trend.7. in which the speaker develops an ingenious argument in order to persuade his mistress to give up her coyness [i. A natural detail. to change the form of ruling power). He rather sees the events and the fate of the two rulers in the context of a providential history. but Marvell’s poem extends it into a meditation on time. is On a Drop of Dew. anticipating the early Romantic attitude to nature. 2. It is a seduction poem. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Carpe diem 54 . King Charles I Stuart. and many of his poems reveal his delight in the contemplation of rural nature. in contrasting colours. which begins with a most accurate description of a dew-drop on a rose petal. however.

If the difference is considerable. but….8. Love can suspend the inexorable laws of nature. in its sexual fulfillment. after revising subchapter 2. If… But… Therefore… Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.8. Love. in the Reader). What are the main ideas corresponding to these three steps? Formulate them succinctly in the space left below. SAQ 11 Read Marvell’s poem To His Coy Mistress (Text 2. read the poem again. at the end of the unit. it can arrest the inevitable course towards physical extinction by a moment of ecstatic pleasure. paying attention to the logic of the argument.The late Renaissance and the Baroque to the imperative of conquering time by the intensity of sensual enjoyment. which has the structure If…. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 55 . Do not exceed 12 lines / 120 words in all.3. is presented as the only way of transcending our mortality. then (therefore)…. more carefully.

The late Renaissance and the Baroque

Summary
This unit has introduced you to an important aspect of the English Renaissance: the development, in the early 17th century, of the Baroque as a structure of sensibility different from that of the Elizabethan age (corresponding to the high Renaissance). Subchapter 2.1 focuses on the contrast between the optimism, confidence, exuberance, sense of order, harmony and balance characterising the high Renaissance spirit, and the baroque vision with its emphasis on disorder, conflict, tension and confusion, scepticism and anxiety. Paradox and irony are favourite devices for the exploration of the relationship between contraries, such as truth and illusion, wisdom and madness, life and death, body and spirit, action and contemplation, etc. A taste for the obscure, for melancholy, for the macabre often defines the Baroque, but it may also display an attraction to the spectacular, to extravagance and excess. Subchapters 2.2 and 2.3 focus, respectively, on Shakespeare and on two great metaphysical poets, John Donne and Andrew Marvell, who best illustrate this spirit of the late Renaissance. Subchapter 2.2 deals with Shakespeare’s four great plays of his second period of creation – Hamlet, King Lear, Othello, and Macbeth. The themes they explore (the nature of evil, the meaning of human suffering, the paradoxes of innocence and knowledge, truth and falsehood, etc.(reflect the baroque sensibility of the age). This subchapter includes also a discussion of Shakespeare’s last major dramatic creation, The Tempest, a romance play in which his tone changes into a more affirmative one and the central thematic concern is the possibility of moral regeneration, of the restoration of order. Subchapter 2.3 aims to acquaint you with some of the basic features of metaphysical poetry, insisting on its use of conceits, on its argumentative structure, on its mixture of intense feeling and intellectual detachment. Both John Donne and Andrew Marvell display a baroque sensibility in their attraction to paradox and ambiguity, and they are both great masters of metaphysical wit, skillfully controlling lyrical effusion by subtle and precise logical argument.

Key words
● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Renaissance Baroque paradox scepticism tragedy romance play play-metaphor metaphysical poetry conceit discordia concors

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Glossary
• Baroque: the term comes from the Portuguese barroco and the Spanish barrueco, meaning a rough or imperfectly shaped pearl. It describes a style in architecture and the visual arts, music and literature, which dominated the 17th century, and which was characterised by sumptuous ornamentation and by the search for effect. Its meaning is often extended to a certain type of sensibility, not necessarily restricted to the historical period in which the baroque style flourished. In art, the Baroque is opposed to Classicism and Neoclassicism. blank verse: see the Glossary in Unit 1. carpe diem: literally, “seize the day” in Latin; a phrase from one of Horace’s Odes, meaning “enjoy yourself while you can.” The carpe diem motif is associated with the theme of the brevity of life and the inevitability of death. Civil War: see the Glossary in Unit 1. courtly love: a concept developed during the Middle Ages, in literary and aristocratic/courtly circles, which was closely linked to the feudal concept of vassalage and the cult of the Virgin Mary. discordia concors: (Latin) literally: harmonious discord; combination of apparently discordant images or ideas, the joining of opposites in such a way that a paradoxical sense of harmony is created. fall of princes: the traditional theme of a tragedy, as established by Aristotle (see the Gallery of personalities below), in his treatise on Poetics. According to him, tragedy was supposed to deal with the downfall of a noble character, enjoying “reputation and prosperity.” The disaster is brought on him not by vice and depravity, but by “some error of judgement,” and its representation is meant to arouse pity and fear. far-fetched: literally: carried too far; improbable, unlikely. history plays (or chronicle plays): a form of drama invented by the Elizabethans, which dramatises a certain historical period, starting from historical record rather than from myth and legend. Shakespeare’s chronicle plays include a sequence of four plays on the War of the Roses (the three parts of Henry VI, and Richard III – 1590-1592), and another series, consisting in Richard II, King John, the two parts of Henry IV, and Henry V, written between 1595-1599. These plays are mainly inspired from the 16th century chronicles of Raphael Holinshed, and they were highly influential in the shaping of a national consciousness. They scrutinise the national past, underlining the importance of a centralised authority which should put an end to the dangers of anarchy, inherent in the feudal struggles for power. Horatian Ode: an ode (see the Glossary in Unit 1) written in a highly formal, regular pattern, on the model of the ancient Latin poet Horace (65-8 B.C.). hyperbole: a rhetorical figure consisting in deliberate exaggeration, for the purpose of emphasis. imagery: basically, language appealing to the senses. Imagery represents the coherent system of mental images evoked by 57

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figurative language, to which certain patterns of feeling are associated, and which direct the reader’s reaction. For instance, in Macbeth, the recurrent imagery of clothes sitting ill on their owner intensifies our perception of the protagonist as a usurper, and the dominant imagery of darkness contributes to the suggestion of the proportions of the moral evil. In King Lear, frequent images connected with bodily pain and torture and with animals of prey strengthen our sense of the extraordinary power of evil, of a humanity that has become a toy in the hands of indifferent gods. Jacobean and Caroline drama: see again subchapter 1.4.1 in Unit 1. masque: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Metaphysical Poets: see again subchapter 1.3 in Unit 1. oxymoron: a rhetorical figure in which apparently contradictory terms are used in conjunction (as in “beautiful tyrant”). pastoral: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Petrarchan: related to or modelled on Petrarch (see again the Gallery of personalities in Unit 1). Puritan: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Renaissance: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. revenge tragedy: see again subchapter 1.4.1 in Unit 1. sea-change: this phrase from Shakespeare’s The Tempest, used by Ariel in one of his songs, is used to refer to a complete change in the nature or character of something, a change which seems almost magical. soliloquy: from Latin solus, i.e. alone, and loqui, i.e. to speak; a widely accepted dramatic convention, by which a character, speaking alone on the stage, reveals to the audience his thoughts, feelings, motives and intentions. In Shakespeare’s plays, the soliloquies mark the moments of the characters’ most profound insight, in which some important revelation is reached, or in which the character discloses the full complexity of his motives and reveals the depths of his consciousness. valediction: a farewell speech (from Latin vale: farewell, and dicere: to say). wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.

Gallery of personalities
• • Aristotle (384-322 B.C.): Greek philosopher, author of works on logic, ethics, politics, poetics, rhetoric, metaphysics. Johnson, Samuel (1709-1784): the most influential critic of the 18th century, author of the impressive critical-biographical work Lives of the Poets (1779-1781), editor of Shakespeare’s work (1765). He compiled the first important Dictionary of the English Language (1755). Kyd, Thomas (1557-1595): one of the most popular Elizabethan dramatists, the author of The Spanish Tragedy, the prototype of the Renaissance revenge tragedy, modelled on the plays of Seneca (se again subchapter 1.3.2 in Unit 1). Marlowe, Christopher (1564-1593): Elizabethan dramatist, the
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The late Renaissance and the Baroque

most important and influential of Shakespeare’s precursors. His tragedies (Tamburlane the Great, Doctor Faustus, The Jew of Malta) depict titanic heroes, whose extraordinary will power and ambition set them on a risky quest (for absolute power, knowledge and wealth, respectively). Sidney, Philip (1554-1586): important poet of the Elizabethan age, best known through his sequence of love sonnets Astrophil and Stella. He is also the author of a prose romance, Arcadia, and of a critical prose essay, An Apology [i.e. defense] of Poetry, which played a major role in the definition of English Renaissance literary aesthetics. Spenser, Edmund (1552-1599): one of the greatest English poets, whose influence on later poets is comparable to that of Shakespeare and Milton. Like Sidney (see below), Spenser wrote a sonnet sequence, Amoretti, which enjoyed great popularity. His masterpiece is the allegorical poem The Fairie Queen, a culmination of Renaissance poetic art, which glorifies Queen Elizabeth. Tudor monarchs: Henry VII (1485-1509), who established national order and unity after a long period of feudal war; Henry VIII (1509-1547), Elizabeth I (1558-1603).

Solutions and suggestions for SAQs
SAQ 1 1. emphasis on disorder, violence, conflict, instability 2. emphasis on life’s shortness and insubstantiality (life as dream), on the macabre and the morbid, on melancholy 3. taste for extravagance, excess, breaking of limits and proportions, ambiguity 4. scepticism, anxiety, tension SAQ 2 1. Shakespeare shows a deep understanding of human nature in its extraordinary variety; he portrays a wide range of feelings, emotions, attitudes and moral features; he achieves perfectly convincing characters, in a variety of dramatic registers. 2. The last plays are characterised by a vision of hope and of order restored; here, innocence is victorious over evil, by contrast with the former tragic vision of the universe and of man as torn by inner conflicts. SAQ 3 The fragment contrasts the confidence and exuberance of the Renaissance with the scepticism and melancholy characteristic of the baroque spirit. Hamlet as a Renaissance man glorifies the beauty and majesty of the universe, and praises man as the masterpiece of creation, close to angels and God in his power of understanding and the infinity of his creative potential. On the other hand, to his tragic consciousness the world appears as irremediably corrupt and infested with evil, and man as a creature limited by his mortal condition (“quintessence of dust”).
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King Lear SAQ 5 In the first place. F. From Prospero’s point of view. complicated line of argument. the abstract and the concrete. attempt to reconcile contradictory or discordant experiences. F. made of two moving legs articulated at one end. “Sleep no more” anticipates the torments of Macbeth’s conscience. 6. 5. “The innocent sleep” is the symbol of moral integrity. SAQ 6 Prospero might have better controlled Caliban in his “brutish” state. Othello.g. and the horrible crime has immediate effects on his conscience. concise expression and density of meaning 2. this hallucination proves Macbeth’s strong imagination. 4. Perfect circles (symbolising perfect love) may be traced by means of the compasses. which remain perfectly united. surprising associations) 3. He thus expected Caliban to overcome his primitive impulses and to develop more civilised tendencies (“purposes”). because the latter’s nature was hopelessly evil. is a suitable emblem for their souls. unexpected. which he resents. even if physically the lovers must be apart. use of conceits (extended comparisons. however. he failed in his effort to enlighten Caliban. unable to find peace once it has been corrupted by evil.g. through language (knowing his “own meaning”). innocent conscience) is part of the natural order of man’s existence. By 60 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . From Caliban’s point of view. 7. He is not a cold-blooded killer. F. King Lear. This instrument. Othello. T. of a clean mind. usually between highly dissimilar elements. he chose to raise Caliban to the condition of a rational creature. T. analytical detachment from emotion 4. T. which organises and “manages” intense feeling and emotion. guided by rational will. As a truly superior being.e. by keeping one foot fixed and moving the other round this centre. 3.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 4 1. 3. As “chief nourisher in life’s feast. of his own sense of self. the development of conscience. 2. T SAQ 8 1. 2. Hamlet. make his purposes known through words). endowed with speech. passion and reason. led to his awareness of his condition as a slave. to blend contraries (e. 5. Prospero seemed also to think that Caliban could be socialised through speech.) SAQ 9 The poet associates mutual love with the way in which a pair of compasses works. etc. SAQ 7 1.” sleep (i. Macbeth’s feeling that he has lost this privilege of nature reflects his awareness that his “unnatural” deed is a violation of moral law (which is “natural”). which would have enabled him to communicate (e. Hamlet. Hamlet. 4. King Lear.

London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. vol. consent and legality. Daiches. 130-140) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 61 . so let us devour Time with the intensity of our desire.. will long for him.” Depending on the distance from the centre to the circumference. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. Ioan-Aurel (coord. English Literature and Civilisation. God would set him free for a complete experience of religious devotion. 34-40. because your charms deserve such praise. the poet’s love depends on the certainty of his mistress’s faithfulness and constancy: “Thy firmness makes my circle just. A Critical History of English Literature. 302-305) 3. the inclination of the fixed leg may vary – it seems to “lean after” the moving leg. just as the mistress.). in the absence of joy. 3. Further reading 1.” which only God can effect.. however. 1983 (pp. SAQ 11 If we had time enough and the world were all ours. Preda. your virginity will then be worth nothing. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). Therefore let us enjoy each other while we are still young and you are beautiful. He loves God. SAQ 10 Marriage is associated with love.The late Renaissance and the Baroque analogy. your beauty will fade and my songs of praise will have no object when you lie in your grave. as the moving leg will “come home” and join its “twin. but the implication is that his will and reason are too weak to defend his faith. waiting for her departed lover. The only way out of his loveless “marriage” to sin is a “divorce. 1969 (pp. Taking him by force – by the force of the divine grace –. while rape presupposes the violation of one’s will. the metaphor of the speaker’s “marriage” to God’s enemy suggests his sense of sin. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. vol.” so there is always the certainty of reunion for the lovers. Boris (ed. But. 97-105. 273-287) 2. since only worms will “enjoy” it. 267-283. I would spend ages in praising every part of your body. instead of letting it devour us slowly. Penguin Books Ltd. Your own passion “transpires” in the blush of your skin. in fact. which would restore the purity of his faith (being “chaste”).). David. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. Ford. and which would resemble rape. But I know time is merciless. 1991 (pp. Paradoxically. 246-249. The speaker tries thus to persuade his mistress of his own constancy of feeling.

3. 3.2.3. 3.4. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No. 3. 3.4. 3.2.4. 3.2. 3.5.2.3.6.1. 3. 3. 3. 3.3.5. 3.4.The works of John Milton UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON Unit Outline 3.2. 3.5.5. Unit objectives The Works of John Milton Milton.4.1.5. 3.3. 3. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 63 63 63 64 64 66 66 67 67 68 69 70 72 72 74 75 77 78 79 81 82 83 83 84 85 86 87 62 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the Christian humanist Milton’s early poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso Lycidas – a pastoral elegy Milton’s sonnets Sonnet VII Sonnet XVII Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Raphael’s warning to Adam The creation of the world The seduction of Eve The world after the Fall The heroes of Paradise Lost Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell Satan.4. 3. 3.1.2.1. 3.4.4.2.1.

religious and civil debates of his age. etc. and he dedicated long years of study and preparation to his accomplishment as a creator. the author of a work which represents a highly original synthesis of Renaissance humanism*. and for almost twenty years he served their ideal of a truly reformed England. which exerted a huge influence on many generations of poets. mathematics. he studied Latin. politics. He devoted himself heart and soul to the cause defended by the Puritans*. accumulating an impressive knowledge in a diversity of fields (e. rhetoric and the great works of the classics. geography. he approached a diversity of subjects. He lived and created in an age of historical turbulence and profound change. and he made up his mind about his own position in the conflicts that agitated his country. At Cambridge (1625-1629). he went on a trip to Italy. In his prose essays and pamphlets*. Milton’s enduring reputation is ensured by his masterpiece.1. etc. He returned to England when the troubles which were to lead to the Civil War* started. His education was eminently that of a Christian humanist. the freedom of the press. His enormous learning. he continued to read intensively. the Christian humanist Milton is one of the most prominent figures of the 17th century. Milton. music. recommended him for the office of Latin Secretary to the Council of State. Milton had from an early age the conviction of his poetic vocation.g. religion. such as education. and his acquaintance with the great artistic achievements of that country and with prominent personalities enriched his education and contributed to his erudition. written in English and in Latin. In 1638. Paradise Lost. motifs and concerns in Milton’s earlier poems ♦ describe the kind of sonnet structure used by Milton ♦ analyse the way in which Milton develops imaginatively and interprets biblical events in Paradise Lost ♦ state and explain the theme of Paradise Lost ♦ summarise the argument that enables Milton to “justify the ways of God to men” in his epic poem ♦ define the main features of the character of Milton’s Satan ♦ describe Milton’s treatment of the characters of Adam and Eve in Paradise Lost Unit objectives 3. Greek and Hebrew.). Christian faith and classical formal perfection. and the course of his literary career was consistently marked by his involvement in the political. as well as his moral inflexibility. After that. the greatest epic poem in English literature. theology.The works of John Milton By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ situate Milton’s literary activity in the historical context ♦ explain what features of Milton’s work define him as a Christian humanist ♦ identify themes. baroque* vision. as a publicist. 63 John Milton (1608-1674) A man of impressive learning The Puritan patriot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . family.

in the optimism and exuberance accompanying the contemplation of reviving nature. but his maturity and experience enabled him to bring to fulfilment the most important part of his poetic work.” The Latin elegies The Nativity Ode 3. Virgil*. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso To Milton’s long years of preparation for the fulfilment of his vocation belong also two poems. his political hopes ended. As in other poems. the pastoral* image of the shepherd becomes a metaphor for the poet-priest engaged in the exploration of high Christian themes.). by his aspiration to be a Christian epic* poet. On the other hand. is in touch with divine secrets. in the perfect integration of classical allusion and pagan mythology with Christian spirituality. who. L’Allegro describes a day – from morning till sunset – in the life of the cheerful man. As his poetic personality gained in self-confidence. as it is also an ambitious assertion of Milton’s own literary birth as a “poet-priest. or the two sides of the poet’s soul. he started to move away from themes and concerns which were defining for the classicist spirit of the Renaissance. Milton wrote with the same ease and grace both in English and in Latin. and his first notable poems were seven Latin elegies*. in these poems Milton appears highly preoccupied by his poetic vocation. In the Sixth elegy. Milton’s Christian humanism consists in this fusion of classical form and Christian themes. in the treatment of the theme of love and the use of Greek mythology. to whose excellence he aspired to rise. In some of them. This poem was intended as the first in a series about the significant moments of the Christian year. these two sides are usually kept apart in these poems. 3.2. With the Restoration*. the Nativity Ode* is a landmark in his creation. As a poet. He sought inspiration in biblical mythology. but Milton did not complete his plan. like a priest. However.The works of John Milton The Christian humanist poet a position that he occupied from 1649 until 1660. His models were the great Greek and Latin poets (Homer*. Ovid*. Milton follows Ovid in the emphasis on sensuous enjoyment. which are in fact complementary: L’Allegro [“the cheerful man”] and Il Penseroso [“the pensive/melancholy man”]. They deal with contrasting moods of poetic inspiration. celebrating the birth (the “nativity”) of Christ and its inauguration of a new order for humanity. However. Milton’s early poems Milton started writing poetry very early. which already displayed the ambivalence in Milton’s poetic identity as both Christian poet and classicist humanist. and he was perfect master of a variety of styles. Milton’s first important poem in English on a religious theme was written in 1629: On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity. etc. for instance. approaching the great religious themes that enabled him to assert his genius. Milton places emphasis on the dignity of agricultural labour and the 64 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2.1. with its pastoral delights.

revise subchapters 3. Are Milton’s first poems in English which deal with a Christian theme. In both poems. the crowing of the cock. polyphonic sounds of the organ. 2. b. at the end of the unit. c. The diurnal activities and the cheerfulness of L’Allegro are replaced here by the nocturnal peace and quiet of the “lonely tower. and on the happiness of rural life. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso a. In each poem. in Il Penseroso. to become a great epic poet of the Christian age. SAQ 1 Make the right choice to continue each of the three beginning statements.” in which the studious poet finds the gratification of intellectual experience. b. 1. b. gives way to the mystic exaltation of the poet-student listening to religious music. the integration. the song of the milkmaid) contrasts with the deep. in L’Allegro. his constant preoccupation with his own poetic becoming. to master a variety of styles. 3.The works of John Milton satisfactions that it offers. c. c. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. you will thus review some aspects of Milton’s literary personality. in his poetic work. there is a strong emphasis on music. The secular* pleasures of common life. but the “natural” music of L’Allegro (the song of the lark. Milton’s literary ambition was a. The final part of Il Penseroso expresses the poet’s aspiration of attaining visionary power. If your choices should be wrong. There is both parallelism and contrast between the two poems. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 65 . the poet hopes to hear “more than is meant to meet the ear” – i. and 3. of classical erudition with biblical themes. In the latter. Milton’s Christian humanism is reflected in a.e. celebrate the diurnal pleasures of pastoral life and its activities. with its simple pleasures. are complementary poems about poetic inspiration and creative moods. appropriate mythological allusions contribute to the creation of the atmosphere.” contemplative mood.1. he expects to discern in the heavenly notes a spiritual truth. the poet emphasises the blessings of the “pensive. to rival the classics in his perfect mastery of Latin. In Il Penseroso. the diversity of subjects in his prose essays and pamphlets.

the shepherdpoet’s consolation is in his own sense of purpose.2. in two of his sonnets he reveals these anxieties in a direct.2. he defines his poetic ambition in terms which are both Christian and classical-humanist. and the end of the elegy brings in a note of personal confidence. Lycidas – a pastoral elegy In the same year with L’Allegro and Il Penseroso (1637). variety and originality in the use of this poetic form. or occasional and complimentary compositions. He asks himself if there is any sense in preparing oneself for poetic fame and giving up the pleasures of life when death may so unexpectedly put an end to all endeavour. personal manner. The death of a promising young man makes the poet meditate on existential problems. to fresh woods and pastures new. Milton composed another poem in which.The works of John Milton 3.3. may appear unjust in a world in which corrupt priests prosper and accede to high offices.” Lycidas shows Milton again preoccupied by his own becoming a poet. in his determination to carry on with his task and do each day’s work: “Tomorrow. and they were either testimonies of personal experience and feeling. preparing himself seriously for becoming a priest. representing both himself and his dead mate as shepherds. again. written at the death of a fellow-student at Cambridge. Milton adds a contemporary Christian relevance to the classical pastoral convention when he reflects on the corruption of the church. This fear was accompanied by the paradoxical feeling that his genius was not ripe enough for the poetic task for which he felt he was destined. uses again the pastoral frame. The lamenting poet finds comfort in the thought that the soul of the dead friend is now with God. in a heavenly pastoral world. The early death of his Cambridge mate was an occasion for meditating on the possibility of his own death before having accomplished the great work for which he had been preparing himself for so long. not on earth. The death of the dedicated young man. Irrespective of their nature. which had known a period of decline since the Elizabethan age*. He wrote sonnets intermittently throughout his life. Milton’s sonnets Milton revived the tradition of the sonnet*. Milton’s concern with his poetic fulfilment 3. If in other poems of Milton’s early career this thought is expressed more obliquely. The answer to such questions enlarges the frame of the pastoral elegy: the true reward for both merit and vice is in heaven. Confronted with the tragic inevitability of death. 66 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton’s sonnets demonstrate a remarkable flexibility. The elegy Lycidas.

and that the passing of the time will eventually confirm if he is destined for glory. at his age.” It would be arrogance to think that God needs “either man’s Milton dictating work or gift” to assert His greatness.” with no “bud or blossom” to promise ripe fruit. other young men have demonstrated “inward ripeness. and confronts the evidence of a “late spring. foolishly: how can God expect him to fulfill his task if He has decided to make him blind? (“Doth God exact daylabour. Patience – a Christian virtue – teaches him that God is served not only by actions.e. since. Patient and dignified waiting for God’s will to be fulfilled is also a way of serving Him. God: the poet’s “great taskmaster” 3. To prevent such a complaint.The works of John Milton 3. in 1652. he admits. Sonnet VII In Sonnet VII (“How soon hath time”). Milton was still invoking Patience to avoid the anxiety caused by his feeling of “unripeness. Milton has the strong sense that his poetic accomplishment is a task imposed by God (his “great task-master”). As a Christian poet.2. In Sonnet XVII. by the acceptance of one’s fortune – of God’s “mild yoke. but finds consolation in his faith in Providence. he had asserted himself as a successful publicist. Since for God time is in fact eternity (“All is…as ever” in God’s eye). When he wrote Sonet XVII. confessing his temptation to ask. The final six lines of the sonnet change this tone of lamentation to one of self-comfort at the thought that heaven has already decided his “lot. in another poem of this kind (Sonnet XVII). who carry out the divine his daughters will. If he is to transcend time by literary fame. and the theme of blindness was to accompany the great themes of his coming masterpieces. Sonnet XVII After almost twenty years.3.” By this time.” “mean or high” as it may be.3. that. he must admit. in which the accumulation of knowledge was meant to create a solid foundation for his future great work. that the unfolding of his poetic destiny is not only a matter of time. He has reached the age of twenty four. as King of Heaven.” that they are “timely happy spirits”. but of God’s eternal will. A sad biographical circumstance increased Milton’s anxiety in this respect: he was going blind.” to carry out the task in such a way as to make his achievement count in eternity. i. Milton meditates on his loss of sight. they have been fortunately able to prove their maturity at the right time. with a certain sadness. angels). light denied?”).1. Milton’s eye-sight was definitively compromised. but also by Christian humility. Milton laments the passing of his youth without any sign of poetic ripeness. he Paradise Lost to commands “thousands” (of spirits. The life of study and leisure that the poet had been leading was a period of prolonged apprenticeship*. Lamenting the loss making his political and religious views known in a series of influential of his eyesight essays. written in 1631. it does not matter if this task is fulfilled soon or late. The only thing that matters is that he should have “grace to use it so. In the first part of the sonnet. patiently. but he had not fulfilled his great poetic promise. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 67 .

3. at the end of the unit. This formal pattern usually corresponds to a certain thematic structure. read again subchapter 3. His blindness was no obstacle – as he advanced in the composition of the poem. and he worked at it over several years. What is the common thematic development in these two sonnets? Your answer should not exceed 8 lines/80 words. which in Sonnets VII and XVII is the same. and of leaving to posterity an undying work. and 3. completing it in 1665 and publishing it in 1667. and it represented the fulfillment of his ambition to write an epic which would be “doctrinal to a nation. made up of two sections: an octave (an eight-line stanza) and a sestet (a six-line stanza). when he was already blind. Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Milton began the composition of his masterpiece in 1657. respectively.2. the passages stored in his mind were transcribed after his dictation.2. Virgil. Dante* –. Read these sonnets (Texts 3.The works of John Milton SAQ 2 Milton adopted the form of the Italian sonnet. paying attention to what their octave and sestet deal with. in the Reader).4. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Paradise Lost was the fruit of long years of preparation and meditation.1. he expected the inspiring Muse to compensate for his physical blindness with a 68 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and the two sonnets. As the several Invocations in the poem suggest.” He had always dreamed of reaching the stature of the great epic poets that were his models – Homer.3. If there should be significant differences.

and of Adam and Eve Lost from Paradise. etc. in theme a daring. enemy]” who “holds the tyranny of Heaven.” and the central theme of his poem is that of felix culpa* – the fortunate mistake. These problems may be summarised by the alternative freedom vs. with the poet’s invocation of the Muse. obedience and rebellion.4. to “illumine” what is “dark” in him. (divine) love and (Satanic) hatred. brought about by his disobedience. are gathered to listen to Satan. Then the reader is plunged into the middle of the action: the fallen angels in Hell. Milton had thought. His work is encyclopaedic. and thus to enable him to attain indeed to a “prophetic strain. he decided on the subject of the Fall – the theme of Paradise double fall. The “lost Archangel. happiness and peace they had enjoyed in Heaven. of many possible subjects for his capital work – subjects inspired either from British or from The subject and biblical history. Paradise Lost defines Milton best as a Christian humanist. declares his hatred against God and his intention to regain Heaven. Its Christian frame absorbs and integrates Milton’s astonishing learning. predestination*. which is never ornamental. is subordinated to the poetic intensification or clarification of the main theme. as he stated in the opening Invocation.” forever deprived of the glory. Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The poem begins in conventional epic manner. Incapable of accepting the thought of submission and of his imprisonment in Hell. The twelve books which make up Paradise Lost unfold an impressive epic action. “to justify the ways of God to men. over the years. 3. burning in the “darkness visible” of those “regions of sorrow. knowledge and ignorance/innocence. Satan is determined to wage “eternal war” to his “grand Foe [i. He interprets poetically the biblical events.e. the creation of the world and of man. The The belief in poem’s doctrinal foundation is the idea that God’s infinite knowledge free will and power do not exclude man’s freedom of action and choice.The works of John Milton more penetrating understanding of spiritual truths. in which man’s fall. the fault with The Felix culpa happy consequences. whose main moments are the fall of the rebel angels.” as he anticipated in Il Penseroso. Starting from the dualism good/evil. Finally. Milton approached in his grandiose epic problems which provoked heated polemics in his time. the poem develops an implicit debate on such contraries as freedom and tyranny. is presented as a necessary moment in the “Eternal Providence*”. of Lucifer* from Heaven. the greatest synthesis of the Western literary tradition. but by Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 69 . original epic scenario. man’s temptation and fall into sin.1. and his loss of Paradise. Milton’s ambition was.” full of the bitterness of defeat. an evil which is turned to good in God’s overall plan for the history of creation. in fact. accumulated throughout his life. but his erudition.” He suggests to his followers that their “work” should no longer be done by force – since that is the attribute of the Almighty –.

The accepted solution is to reach the new world created by God. knowing in advance that Satan will be successful in his attempt to “pervert” man. i. whose setting is in Heaven. His voyage through the great gulf separating Hell from Heaven.” and to make them transgress God’s interdiction of tasting the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge.e. and the only way to satisfy divine justice is a sacrificial death that would redeem man.” God anticipates the event of His Son’s incarnation.” He thus anticipates the moment of the Temptation. The fallen angels are all called to a council in Satan’s infernal palace. by virtue of his leading position. the ascension from darkness to the light of his “native seat” – now forbidden to him –.e. and He commands His angels to adore and celebrate man’s Saviour and “universal king. Pandemonium*. death and resurrection. 3. surpass] hellish hate. concentrates the doctrinal argument of the poem. He contemplates with envy the beauty and the innocent happiness of Adam and Eve. to seek the newly created Earth. Chaos and Chance. The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Book III. God. Satan has reached the Garden of Eden. Divine justice and mercy Book IV: Satan’s arrival in the Garden of Eden 70 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton displays here at his best his gift of evoking vast spaces and general chaos. the overwhelming discord of the elements of a yet uncreated world. assumes the danger of trying to break free from the formidable prison of Hell. Man’s sin of disobedience must be punished justly. cunning]. to find the weakness of man and to seduce him to join their party.The works of John Milton The council of the fallen angels “fraud or guile [i. Satan is prevented from carrying out his design by the angels guarding Paradise. God’s Son offers to pay this price for the reconciliation of man to his heavenly Father. and he flies away. is rendered in one of the most highly poetic passages in the poem.2. whose splendour is described more effectively through Satan’s jealous eyes.” Meanwhile. the “wild abyss” governed by Night. and their discussions are rendered in Book II. Satan also tells his companions of a prophecy according to which a new world and a new kind of creature were to be brought into being by God. The corruption of God’s creation was thought better than any kind of revenge. and plans to “excite their minds / With more desire to know. Satan. in which his success was due to deceit and dissimulation.e. and so “Heavenly love shall outdo [i. explains to His Son the reason for his allowing this to happen.4. set him free from sin.

and what are its implications? Answer in no more than 15 lines/150 words.The works of John Milton SAQ 3 Read Text 3. What is God’s argument. which contains God’s justification for allowing man to fall. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 71 . Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.4. read again the text. If there should be major differences. more carefully. in the Reader. at the end of the unit.

e. and in the description of more familiar details of earthly Nature. and its impulse was God’s desire to create “good out of evil. Blake: The downfall of the his own power and pre-eminence. The idea of Good coming out of Evil is central to Paradise Lost. with her “absolute” loveliness and grace.4. in the multitude of its phenomena and living forms. instigated by Lucifer. the “divine historian. The six days of the biblical Genesis are developed by Milton into an impressive poetic vision.” Raphael leaves them. King Anointed*”. Raphael’s warning to Adam In Book V. not before repeating his warning.3. He draws Adam’s attention that God has made him “perfect. and. and about his perfect happiness in the company of “divinely fair” Eve. the angel Raphael. both in the large-scale description of the making of celestial bodies or in the sublime picture of the primal waters. and most evident in the treatment of the fall of Adam and Eve. Satan. sweetness. space]” left by the fallen angels. The story of the “deep fall / Of those too high aspiring who rebel angels (1808) rebelled / With Satan” is given by Raphael as a “terrible example” of the reward for disobedience.” and reminds him that obedience to his Maker means enjoying the present happy state. whose pride had been hurt when God proclaimed His Son the “Messiah. and fear to transgress!” 3. Adam admits that. not immutable [i. sent by God. without aspiring to know things above his power of understanding. after the defeat of the rebel angels.e. The creation of the world Raphael also tells Adam the story of the creation of the world and of man. Adam is grateful to Raphael. in Milton’s poem. in Book VII. God entrusted His Son with the act of Creation and the latter’s “powerful Word / And Spirit” gave life and order to “unformed” matter and turned chaos into cosmos.The works of John Milton 3. Raphael tries to restrain Adam’s curiosity about “things above this world. It is interesting that. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural The divine creation: Good coming out of Evil 72 . as this diminished W. Raphael once again advises him against trying to penetrate the secrets of the “great Architect. In Book VIII. the divine creation took place after the fall of Lucifer.4.” to fill in the “vacant room [i. that cannot change]. Adam asks Raphael to tell him the story of the fallen angels. and wishes to know more about the celestial motions.” and that this happiness depends on his free will. he tells him about his own experiences after he was created.” Man himself was created as a “better race. so that he may know more about his enemy.” He explains to Adam that true wisdom lies in the desire to know those things which directly concern one’s own being. and he explicitly warns Adam: “remember. In Milton’s interpretation. in order to prolong his guest’s visit.” for the evocation of the making of the world. Milton displays an extraordinary evocative power. innocence and “virgin modesty. visits Adam in Paradise to warn him about the danger from Satan.4. The rest of Book V and Book VI are a retrospective account of the war in Heaven.

read the fragment again. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 1794) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 73 .The works of John Milton SAQ 4 Text 3. W. at the end of the unit. Blake: Urizen as the creator of the material world (from the poem Europe. the first moments in the creation of the world: the making of heavens and skies. A Prophecy. If your answer should differ significantly from the offered suggestions. What does Milton suggest by the image of God using his “golden compasses”? Answer in the space below.7. and the “Spirit of God” infusing life into the primal ocean. through Raphael’s words. in no more than 10 lines/100 words. more carefully. in the Reader presents.

most subtle*] beast of all the field. The seduction of Eve Book IX presents the great scene of Eve’s seduction by Satan. Credulous Eve tastes from the forbidden fruit and tries to convince Adam that its effect is not to open the way to “evil unknown. since the “link of nature” is so strong between them that he cannot imagine living without her. flattered by his praise of her “celestial beauty. and all The effects of Nature is in pain. Adam and Eve have a difference of opinion: Eve insists that they should divide their daily labour and work in different places. but he regains the strength of his hate and appears to Eve (1808) her in the splendid shape of the Serpent. 1827) 74 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Eve is amazed at the miracle of a beast capable of speech and.” she is finally seduced by his promise of higher knowledge and by his assurance that there is no sin in such aspiration. W.4. At last.5. Book IX: Eve and the Serpent (illustration by John Martin. Meanwhile. The “calm region” of their state of mind. Satan gives voice again to his torments and to his ambition of destroying God’s creation.e. suspicion. he is disarmed by her Satan with Adam and angelic grace. and all harmony between them is destroyed by bitter reciprocal accusations.The works of John Milton 3. Their former innocent sensuality is now replaced by guilty lust and the feeling of shame. for a moment. Blake: Satan finds Eve alone. hate / Mistrust. and. her argument wins: she is willing to put her innocence to trial. while Adam tries to convince her that together they would be more safe from harm. is now troubled by the “higher winds” of negative passions – “anger. their inward the fall on Nature peace. Adam is chilled with horror at Eve’s irresponsible mistake but decides to share her fate. the thundering skies weep. the “subtlest [i. whose spirit has entered the body of a serpent. certain that the proud tempter will not be successful.” but to “open eyes” and bring those who taste closer to the condition of a god.” Back to guarded Paradise in this disguise. The disaster of the original sin shakes the foundations of the natural order: Earth trembles. discord” – which make reason and will helpless.

The works of John Milton SAQ 5 Text 3. the destined “restorer of Mankind*. Seduced by the illusion of the Tree of Knowledge. Milton continues to expand moments of the biblical Genesis. the consequences of man’s original sin are unfolded in episodes of great poetic and emotional intensity. in which these moves are illustrated. as God himself predicts: His Son. by inciting her to disbelieve God’s threat. He tries to dispel Eve’s fear of death. accusing Him of keeping Adam and Eve ignorant so that He may hold them in a state of servitude. _______ Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 3. _______ b.8. at the end of the unit. He flatters Eve. or fragments. _______ d. If any of your matches should be wrong. and he proudly boasts of it in the Pandemonium. Match these sentences with the fragment. He tempts Eve with the promise of absolute knowledge. The sentences below describe various moves in Satan’s strategy of seduction.” is the one who will. This emphasises the idea that Satan’s victory is not final. they taste its fruit. but are terribly humiliated to find that they are tasting only dust and ashes. He tries to introduce into Eve’s mind the doubt about God’s being “the author of all things. read once more the indicated text and do the exercise again. He tries to awaken in Eve the spirit of defiance and insubordination. but His fear that His power might be weakened if His creatures equalled him in knowledge. in the middle of this speech. but he also adds symbolic episodes. hoping to arouse her pride. _______ e.” _______ g. 75 Book X: the world open to Sin and Death Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . on a separate sheet. _______ f. the whole assembly of fallen angels are temporarily turned into monstrous hissing snakes and dragons. but. a. at last. such as the building of a huge bridge across chaos by Sin and Death. He tries to arouse Eve’s suspicion that God’s reason for His interdiction may not be man’s own good. from the speech by which Satan tempts Eve into disobeying God and eating the forbidden fruit. _______ c. which marks the conquest of the world by Satan.4. at the end of each sentence. which will bring her close to the condition of God. Write the number(s) of the corresponding fragment(s) in the indicated space. in the Reader contains four fragments from Book IX. The world after the Fall In the next books. annihilate Sin and Death. He denigrates God.6. Satan’s victory seems complete.

In Book X. and offering to pay the price of His own death for the peace between God and mankind. the emphasis on the presence and role of the Son of God increases. The certainty that. changed drastically after Adam’s fall. the Son of God acts as a mediator between the sinful humans and His Father. redemption*: Jesus. death. In Book XI. and the poem closes not on a note of despair. Moments of the biblical history are unfolded before Adam’s eyes. his suffering. The vision is replaced by Michael’s narrative in Book XII. and He sends the archangel Michael to God decides Adam and Eve’s expulsion show them out. who can see the “many shapes of Death” and the many ways that lead to it. faith and good deeds. etc. combining thus justice with mercy. asking God to accept their prayers and sincere repentance. through Christ. The promise of where the central episode is the promised birth of God’s Son.” founded on love. from Heaven Before they leave Paradise. Michael shows Adam a vision of the future. God sends Him to communicate the divine punishment to Adam and Eve. from man’s own vices – violence. intemperance. an anticipation of the effects of the original sin on the following generations.The works of John Milton After the story of man’s fall. Book XII: Adam and Eve leaving Paradise (illustration by John Martin. pride. 1827) 76 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but of sadness. evil will finally be turned to good makes Adam and Eve’s exile from Paradise more tolerable. but Michael comforts him. This comforting story gives Adam peace of mind and Christ the hope that man is able to build – in Michael’s words – “a paradise within. Adam suffers deeply for the loss of his native place and of God’s proximity. God consents. – to the hostility of Nature. resurrection and ascension to the coming of Heaven. but He decides that Adam and Eve may no longer live in Paradise.

Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 77 . If they should differ in major points. in the Reader represents the ending of Paradise Lost. The heroes of Paradise Lost Many critics have remarked the paradox that the heroic spirit of Milton’s epic is embodied in Satan. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 3. which they fully assume. while Adam has more in common with a tragic hero.The works of John Milton SAQ 6 Text 3.9. however.5. How do these lines present Adam and Eve at the moment of their exile into the world? Your answer should not exceed 12 lines /120 words. It may be argued. that both Satan and the human couple are heroic – each in a different way in their endurance of the bitter consequences of their sin. more carefully. read the fragment again.

The works of John Milton 3. “Imparadised in one another’s arms” – i. This is why he is in a continual state of frustration and anger. he had been the first Archangel. and his great ambition is “to reign. He displays majesty and grandeur even in his fallen condition. 78 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .” as he cannot help comparing their bliss with his own condition in Hell. Satan knows how to inflame again their ambition of re-ascending and their thirst for revenge. and that Milton gave the full measure of his literary genius in the character of Satan because he instinctively supported the idea of freedom. Before his fall. Satan appears indeed as a champion of freedom. and his longing for the delights of his former existence torments him like an inner hell. Satan seems to comfort himself with the thought that at least he is free.” Envy accompanies Satan’s thirst for power. One of the most powerful illustrations of this feeling which consumes Satan is the scene in which he sees Adam and Eve for the first time. and he finds inner strength only in the intensity of his hatred. William Blake remarked that Satan is Milton’s most accomplished creation. In Hell. which is itself a paradise. but he also knows that this freedom is a form of punishment. and his extraordinary courage “never to submit or yield” inspires his followers. he naturally assumes the role of a leader.5. made happy in their innocent love. Over a century after the poem’s publication. where there is “neither joy nor love. Pride is one of Satan’s most prominent features in Pride and ambition Paradise Lost. since it is accompanied by suffering and torment. This sight is for him “hateful” and “tormenting. unwilling to serve a power that he considered tyrannical.” only the pain of longing and unfulfilled desire. He is envious Envy and hate of God’s Son and His title as King of Heaven. From the beginning of the poem.” He instigates the other angels to rebellion in the name of freedom from servitude. but for him freedom does not mean equality: among the rebel angels.e. the Romantic poets were to establish the view that Satan is actually the main hero.1. Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell The most fascinating of Milton’s heroes is undoubtedly Satan. in whom they saw an embodiment of the spirit of freedom and of resistance to tyrannical oppression. “great in power / In favour and pre-eminence. he is envious of God’s omnipotence. In moments when the fallen angels feel despair at having lost Heaven.

It is with “high words.” and the “Enemy of Mankind. Satan is The Tempter.” in whose destruction he finds complete satisfaction for his hurt pride. Satan can assert his freedom of action only in the sphere of evil. he is the promoter of suspicion and doubt. the “author of all ill” The only way in which Satan can define himself as an equal to the power that he refuses to serve is to become its irreconcilable opponent. As God’s absolute antagonist. that he determines Eve to break the divine interdiction. Milton insists on the fact that they abandoned “the eternal splendours of Heaven” and followed Satan seduced by his promises of freedom and greatness. The temptation of Eve is in fact the repetition of the earlier act of persuading the angels to join him in his rebellion. It is also with “persuasive* words.” seeming reasonable and true.” which actually lacked substance that he manages to revive the courage of the depressed fallen angels. Satan’s speeches have an impressive convincing force. and he invests all his titanic energies in his destructive plan.5. and his power of seduction comes from the mastery of a very efficient rhetoric. His “immortal hate” makes revenge his only aim. Satan’s greatness as a character comes from the sublime intensity of his negative passions. Satan represents the negation of the creative power of the divine Word: his revenge is accomplished not by force. and “out of good still to find means of evil.” He is “the author of all ill. The negative power of rhetoric: Satan the Tempter Gustave Doré: Satan (1870) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 79 . Awakening in man the impulse to question. but by the evil subtlety of his mind and the corrupting power of his word.2.The works of John Milton 3. He is determined “to do ill” – which is “the contrary to his high will” – or to pervert the good done by God. the destroyer of faith. but the epic poet insistently underlines their manipulative intentions. Satan.

The works of John Milton SAQ 7 Text 3. and read the indicated fragment again. “and “The mind is its own place. a Hell of Heaven”? (Answer in no more than 4 lines/40 words. 80 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His words reveal some of the defining features of Milton’s hero. If there are significant differences. and point out what features of Satan’s nature are illustrated by the following lines: A. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven. revise subchapters 3.5.3. in the Reader contains a part of Satan’s speech before his followers. in Hell.” (6 lines /60 words) Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.. Read the whole fragment carefully. at the end of the unit.5. and 3. and in itself / Can make a Heaven of Hell.1.) B. “A mind not to be changed by time or place.2.

He is now more aware of his freedom and his potentiality.” The insistent use of the adjective “our” suggests Milton’s invitation to the reader to join him in his identification. of turning all evil into good by the supreme act of divine grace: the acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice for man.” but also “our credulous mother.” “Our great Progenitor [i.” “mother of human race.3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 81 . he justifies “the ways of God to men” by showing the necessity of the divine grace. As a humanist. Milton depicts Adam and Eve’s fall not as the result of depravity. the titanic dimension of his suffering.5.” Eve is the “Mother of Mankind.” “Our Author.” “Patriarch of Mankind. the sorrow of the fallen humans at their own weakness and their final recognition of their fault entitles them to God’s mercy. ancestor. In his last conversation with Michael. as well as his identification with them in their condition of creatures that have fallen. deprived of worth. of their wrong use of the freedom given by God. As a Christian. but armed with the wisdom of faith. and Milton expresses both admiration and compassion for them. There is a tragic combination of greatness and weakness in their portrayal. but W. but who can hope for redemption*. in Book XII.The works of John Milton 3. Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Poetically. Fallen man is not a hateful creature. Both Adam and Eve display a certain Satanic fascination with the possibility of overcoming their condition through knowledge. The way in which Milton refers to Adam and Eve throughout the poem points out his reverence to the original pair. The consequences of their fall are great because their virtues – so tragically tested – are great. there is not any doubt left about his fundamental evil. Created in God’s image. Adam’s enlarged understanding emerges in perfect fusion with his strengthened faith. gifted with reason – a divine Eden 1808) attribute –. of understanding and accepting his limits. but as a consequence of their wrong choices. Satan’s torments in Hell. Although Paradise has become a forbidden place for them. Milton is the heir of the Renaissance in his glorification of man and his virtues. While Satan’s pain is always accompanied by the proud defiance of God. the protagonists of Milton’s ambitious epic leave it not in hopeless disgrace. the character of Satan is Milton’s greatest achievement in Paradise Lost. He has the revelation of the grandeur of God’s plan and of the “goodness infinite” of the Creator. in spite of the fascination and seductive power with which he is invested. But it is an evidence of Milton’s genius that.e.” “our general mother. Blake: The expulsion from Milton deals with it as one of the central paradoxes of the human condition. man has paid a terrible price for the wisdom of not imitating Satan. Adam is called Sire* of Men. He is now able to understand God’s final purpose. are set against Adam and Eve’s lamentations after the fall. precursor].

one of the greatest English poets. a necessary part of His design. you have been acquainted with some aspects of the prominent literary personality of John Milton. contains a fragment from God’s speech in Book III. you are recommended a more careful reading of the indicated text. Subchapter 3.5. Devoted to the Puritan cause during the Civil War. If there should be major differences. the pastoral elegy Lycidas. in no more than 8 lines/80 words. His work is that of a Christian humanist: his astonishing classical erudition and his aspiration to the formal perfection of his classical models combine with his interest in religious themes. and the twin poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso. the Nativity Ode.2. in the Reader. presents some of his notable early compositions – the Latin elegies. Milton was deeply involved in the religious and political debates of mid-17th century. Some of Milton’s earlier works display this obsessive concern with his becoming a great poet. Convinced also of his poetic vocation. Summary In this unit. he prepared himself for it during long years. Compare your answer with that offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The works of John Milton SAQ 8 Text 3. Read this fragment and summarise its argument. in which he explains to His Son why the fall of man was inevitable. at the end of the unit. The same obsession with poetic ripeness may be found 82 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .

4. offers a brief presentation of the subject and structure of the poem. Subchapter 3. which are. at any time. Milton justifies the fall of man and his exile from Paradise in the context of a providential history. which interprets poetically key moments in biblical history and elements of biblical mythology. and the culmination of his poetic achievement as a Christian humanist. the fall of man and the loss of Paradise. put in the service of evil. his love of freedom. His destructive energy represents a negation of the creative power of the divine word.” and its great Christian theme is that of felix culpa.The works of John Milton in two of his sonnets. but also in which man may. and the promise of man’s reconciliation with God through the sacrifice of Christ. The central events in Milton’s epic are the fall of Lucifer and of the rebel angels. apprenticeship: the training for a trade or for any kind of activity. Undoubtedly. be tested for the responsibility which must accompany the exercise of his free will. Milton’s impressive epic poem Paradise Lost (1667) is the fruit of his mature vision. presented in subchapter 3. in which divine grace will eventually turn all evil into good. the creation of the world and of man. concerns itself with Milton’s heroes in Paradise Lost. Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Christian humanism elegy sonnet epic the Fall of Man the original sin free will Lucifer / Satan Felix culpa Glossary • • • • anointed: from to anoint: to apply oil on someone in a religious ceremony. however.3. Satan is dominated by powerful negative passions which keep him the prisoner of an inner hell. Baroque: see the Glossary in Unit 2.5. In Milton’s vision of the original sin. Adam and Eve are treated both with the typical Renaissance admiration for man’s potential and virtues. the most fascinating and complex creation is Satan – Lucifer in his fallen condition. and with the Christian compassion for their unhappy choice. Subchapter 3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 83 . his courage and majesty. Milton emphasises his fortitude and strength of will. Civil War: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. as a sign of consecration or sanctification. The declared aim of Milton’s epic is “to justify the ways of God to men.

Man’s sin/fault was “happy” because its reward was Christ. The word may refer. subtle: not immediately evident. suffering and death of Christ. whose works include the poem on love Ars Amatoria and the poem on myths Metamorphoses.). benevolent care or protection of his creatures. Pandemonium: a word coined by Milton (from Greek pan: all.). sonnet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 84 . It means “the carrier of light. Puritans: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. he is called Satan. the one who sets man free from sin). the “great and good redeemer” (i.D. predestination: from a theological point of view. Purgatory and Paradise. foreknowledge: knowledge of something before it happens. to convince. Lucifer: the name of the archangel who led the rebel angels. redemption: the deliverance (the rescuing) of man from sin through the incarnation.-17 A. It may also mean cunning. persuasive: having the power or ability to persuade (i. Italian poet. the range of subjects in an elegy was wider. Sire: a respectful term of address. 800 B. pamphlet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. noise and chaos.C. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. by extension. author of La Divina Commedia. clever in using tricks. epic: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. In classical literature.e.” After the fall from Heaven. formerly used when speaking to a king.e. or some tragic event. Roman poet. Ovid: Publius Ovidius Nasso (43 B. every. secular: related to worldly things (as opposed to sacred).The works of John Milton • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • elegy: a meditative poem lamenting the death of someone. the allegorical account of the poet’s journey through Hell. Homer: Greek poet (c. to a place of wild confusion. Restorer of Mankind: Christ as the one who will return (restore) man to God’s grace and to his original condition.C. the act by which God determines in advance the events and their course. and daimon: demon) – the place where all demons gathered. humanism: see classical revival in the Glossary in Unit 1. not concerned with or related to religion. Providence: God’s kindness. to whom are attributed the great epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey. Gallery of personalities • Dante: Dante Alighieri (1265-1321). pastoral: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. ode: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. to cause to believe). felix culpa: this phrase comes from a line in the Latin version of the Catholic religious service held on Easter Sunday. guided by Virgil and his idealised love Beatrice. difficult to detect (or analyse).

You may also consider it useful to pay attention to the following aspects when reading the text: • Satan’s present misery set in opposition with the memories of his former condition..2. in the Reader renders most of his memorable monologue.1. His speech reveals Satan’s tormented mind and the multitude of passions that agitate his soul. Text 3.. romantic in The Tempest –. At the beginning of Book IV. either with remarkable lucidity or blinded by his hate and ambition. It will be therefore advisable to revise the preceding unit. which reveals the complexity of Milton’s hero. Prospero’s speech closes the representation given in honour of Ferdinand and Miranda. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. in Milton’s Paradise Lost. • Read attentively this fragment. 1 This assignment covers Unit 2 and Unit 3. God’s creation.5. and the last paragraph of 2. In both of them. Send-away assignment no. whose epic poem The Aeneid relates the experiences of Aeneas after the fall of legendary Troy.3. A revision of subchapter 3. in which he explores his inner hell.2. Identify his conflicting feelings and the various thoughts that trouble his conscience. and thus of destroying man. in Heaven • his oscillation between remorse and pride • his oscillation between self-justification and self-blame for his rebellion against God • his consideration and rejection of the possibility of rehabilitating Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 85 .). the paragraphs about Macbeth in 2.The works of John Milton • Virgil: Publius Ovidius Maro (70-19 B.6. as well as of SAQ 7 and its solution at the end of the unit might help you to better understand the text and organise your answer. one of the greatest Roman poets. at the end of the play. 2. Satan prepares himself to enter Paradise and to accomplish his diabolical design of tempting Eve. what is the difference in the implications of the two play-metaphors? The answer to these questions should not exceed 25 lines / 250 words. with special attention to the indicated subchapters.C. • What characteristic baroque theme do both fragments illustrate? Given the different context – tragic in Macbeth. You will find it helpful to read again subchapter 2. 40 lines/400 words should be enough for your answer (apart from the lines that you are expected to quote for illustration). You will thus be drawing a portrait of Milton’s Satan. and 2. 1. Macbeth delivers his monologue immediately after he is informed about Lady Macbeth’s death. in the Reader represent short fragments from Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest. Texts 2.4. before he firmly decides to carry out his evil plan. before the final battle.1. the baroque motif of the theatrical illusion is developed.2.

The works of John Milton • • himself before God his determination to turn his suffering into satisfaction his impressive self-knowledge The weight of this task in this SAA is 50%. Created “just and right. or reason. responsible for his choices. The fall of man. i. respectively) and with the anxiety that poetic fulfilment is late to come. 1 will count as 10% in your final assessment. both sonnets deal with the theme of loss (the poet’s sense of the passing of time.” In the case of man. his blindness. The latter part of both sonnets (the sestet) changes the mood to one of patient confidence..a. as man’s wrong choice was not the pure result of his free will. rational spirit of the Creator (he refers to Him elsewhere as “the great 86 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the “instrument” by which to exercise his free will. but the consequence of evil influence. is thus not attributable to God.b. SAQ 2 In the first section (the octave)..c. comforting himself with the faith that his poetic destiny is in God’s hands. Milton emphasises the geometrical. is that one may choose right or wrong. God cannot use His infinite power and knowledge to prevent the errors of those who are free to choose. SAQ 3 God’s whole argument is based on the idea of freedom.” man shared the perfection of the angels (“the Ethereal Powers and Spirits”) and their complete freedom of will and judgment. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. 3. since that would mean the “revocation” of His own “high decree” by which man was made free. Both man and the rebel angels are “authors to themselves in all. however. and reason makes man. • the coherence. not God. SAA no. The paradox of freedom.e. SAQ 4 The image of God using His divine instrument (the “golden compasses”) to draw the “just circumference” of the world implies the idea of perfection and rationality. The implication is that God gave man conscience. clarity. the divine punishment is compensated by mercy (the sending of Jesus as mankind’s saviour). like that of the angels. The poet places his trust in Providence. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). Remember that. in grading your paper. 2.

Satan feels God’s absolute power as a limitation to his enormous ambition. His gift of Reason to man has no justification (it is “useless and vain”). SAQ 7 1.4. Turcu. who draws a firm line between the formed and the formless (chaos). they soon master the sadness of their loss and confront the wide world as a place in which they are expected to exercise judiciously their free will. 4 SAQ 6 For Adam and Eve. SAQ 8 God cannot be pleased with blind submission. 2. David.).e. He wants man’s obedience to be the result of an act of free choice. If Hell is a space of freedom. i. If God leaves man’s loyalty. These lines suggest Satan’s formidable strength of will and the independence of his indestructible spirit. faith and love untested. of the responsibility that accompanies freedom. vol. 435-449) 2. Paradise is now a forbidden place. but at least they have the mutual comfort of their love. e. Further reading 1. 2003 (pp. with passive virtue. Daiches. 1. of human solidarity. and for him servitude in Heaven is the real hell. to be dictated by Reason. unless he exercises his will and reason.3. Editura Universităţii Suceava. unless he is put in the situation of making choices. 2. 2. Incapable of obedience to God. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. 1983 (pp. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. SAQ 5 a. The Literature of the Beginnings. 2. is meant to keep alive the memory of their transgression. c. guarded by fear-inspiring armed angels. The same rational spirit separates what is vital from what is “adverse to life” (the “infernal dregs”).e. 1. 153-163) 3. 1969 (pp. Luminiţa Elena. Forced to look ahead.4. English Literature and Civilisation. under the guidance of Providence. as God has made him. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. d. b. g. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). then it is like Heaven for a spirit that cannot accept constraints. Ioan-Aurel (coord. A Critical History of English Literature. the intelligible and the unintelligible (the dark void). Their hesitant steps suggest their awareness of the difficulty of all choice. Man is not a free creature. This line illustrates both his aspiration to complete independence and his ambition. 3. Preda. It is his will and desire that give value to things around. Satan is willing to exchange the happiness of Heaven for the torments in Hell. and the image of the terrible gates. 141-152) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 87 .The works of John Milton Architect”).. i. comforting himself that he exchanged submission for sovereignty. f.

4. 4.4.4.5.2. 4. Gulliver. 4.1. 4.4. 4.1.1.4.5. 4. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator.3. Unit objectives The Restoration and the Augustan Age Restoration drama Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment Dominant forms in Restoration drama Restoration comedy and its character types William Congreve. 4. 4. 4.5. 4.1.1.4.4.3. 4.2. 4.6.7.2. 4.3. 4.1. “The Spectator’s Club” Augustan satire John Dryden Alexander Pope Jonathan Swift The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia The fourth voyage. 4.1.4.2.2.2.4.4. 4.2. 4.3.The Restoration and the Augustan Age UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE Unit Outline 4.1.3.4.2 4.2.1. 4.4. 4.1. 4. the frustrated idealist The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 89 89 89 89 90 90 92 93 95 95 96 96 98 98 98 100 103 103 103 105 105 107 107 110 110 111 111 113 115 116 88 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .

Nature. under the influence of French theatres. grandiose and extravagant in tragedies –. ♦ establish a relation between the spirit of Restoration comedy and the cultural-historical circumstances in which it emerged. The Renaissance tradition of the theatre as popular entertainment. and. Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment In the heterogeneous literary picture of the Restoration. From a literary point of view. drama holds a place apart. it was a period of transition as well.The Restoration and the Augustan Age By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify the favourite themes and the typical characters of Restoration drama. the cast of actors included women. with spectators no longer allowed to sit on it. One of the most important aspects of this literary age is the shift from the baroque* sensibility of the late Renaissance to the Neoclassic ideal of order. and of considerable diversity. under the patronage of king Charles II. its audience being restricted to the fashionable circles gravitating around the Crown. Alexander Pope. Charles II Stuart (reign: 1660-1685) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 89 . was attended by a strong anti-Puritan reaction. ♦ specify the main targets of satire in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. the age in which the ideological premises of the Enlightenment were constituted. Significant changes took place in the theatre: the stage became closed on three sides.1. Human nature. Restoration drama The Restoration* was a period of significant social and institutional change. Unit objectives 4. was interrupted: Restoration theatre became almost exclusively a form of Court entertainment. of increasing rationalism and secularisation. central to the Neoclassic poetics of the Augustan Age. ♦ explain the relevance of concepts like Art. addressing itself to an inclusive public. the scenery became more elaborate – more “realistic” in comedies. Restoration drama marked a clear split between popular and aristocratic standards of taste. and their re-opening in 1660. ♦ identify the main concerns of literary Neoclassicism.1. and Jonathan Swift. The Puritans had closed theatres in 1642. clarity and elegant restraint.1. 4. ♦ define the purposes and literary strategies of the periodical essay as an instrument of cultural enlightenment ♦ explain the remarkable development of satire in the Augustan Age. ♦ describe satirical devices used by John Dryden.

were essential for the true man of the world. Conquest and seduction. of incredible cruelty and perfidy.1. reflected the hedonism* and promiscuity encouraged at court by Charles II himself (nicknamed “the Merry Monarch” for his pleasure-loving way of life). betrayal and mockery were recurrent motives in the comic plots of Restoration drama. inflated conception of heroism – these were the ingredients of a dramatic genre whose spirit was in sharp contrast with the unheroic age of the Restoration. Marriage and the games of love were a prevailing theme. and satirised the aspiration of social climbing and the ideal of virtue and respectability of the middle classes. lust. The action was usually set in remote. The range of character types in Restoration comedy was very diverse. refinement and sophistication.2. The highest achievement of this kind of baroque theatre was provided by John Dryden’s plays*. and its audience was restricted to the exclusive and fashionable circles in London. Heroic tragedy* was a dramatic development from the epic poem. adultery. with characters conventionally distributed into fabulously valiant heroes and virtuous beautiful heroines. both of them highly conventional forms. Another dominant dramatic form during the Restoration was the comedy of manners. Sensational turns of situation. jealousy. on the one hand. wit*. or in the survival of love over the criminal machinations of the villains.” reflecting the aristocratic ethos of the time. Restoration comedy and its character types Restoration comedy was “class drama. and. The Puritan rigidity and austerity of the former period were repudiated. Restoration comedies dealt primarily with sexual intrigue and the pursuit of pleasure – including the pleasure of cynical manipulation of others. ending in Heroic tragedy the death of the hero or heroine or both and the triumph of honour.1. an artificial.3. the cynicism. ridiculing their crude manners and lack of sophistication. magnificent settings. Restoration comedy was a mirror of the Comedy of manners environment in which it developed. A certain coarseness of feeling. above all.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. sumptuous costumes. Gallantry. grandiloquent declamations and sentimental exaltation. It made fun of the people from the countryside. on the other. or Court Wits. and absolute villains. 4. but they were loveless marriages and love affairs without warmth and affection. and the plays of the Restoration Wits*. Dominant forms in Restoration drama The main kinds of drama were heroic tragedy and comedy of manners. The conception of character in Restoration comedy was indebted to the Renaissance comedy of humours*. One of the most common types was the rake – the libertine. the 90 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . exotic places. and the characteristic theme was the conflict between love and honour. the licentiousness* and frivolity characterising Restoration comedy were accompanied by a cult for elegance. although each in its own way and for different reasons. fashionable manners.

whose simplicity and ingenuousness made her a perfect prey to the sophisticated seducer. but whose affectation* became the object of irony and satire. selfish and manipulative. cynical. Contrasting types were the coquette. etc. deliberately superficial in construction. who tried to imitate fashionable manners. usually an unprincipled and heartless married woman. or fool. If characters were usually static. lacking complexity. young or old. whose generosity and kindness are satirised as weaknesses. aspiring to the perfect adventure. the lusty widow. the ingénue. one of the first actresses and the mistress of Charles II William Hogarth* Detail from The Rake’s Progresss (1735) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 91 .” without scruples. with several subplots and with action developing at a fast pace. Nell Gwynn (1650-1687).The Restoration and the Augustan Age “young-man-about-town. the country squire*. Other common character types in Restoration comedy were the country girl. pleasure-seeking. more concerned for his reputation as a wit than for honour. and the trusting husband as dupe. the scheming valet. the plot of Restoration comedy was usually highly complicated. Another frequent type was the fop*. despising marriage.

The true master of Restoration comedy of manners was William Congreve (1679-1723). and satirised clumsy manners and dull simplicity. read again subchapters 4. Heroic tragedy reflected the realities and spirit of the Restoration Age. refinement and sophistication. It displays typical Restoration characters. His satirical play Love for Love (1695) deals with the contrast between public reputation and private behaviour. 4. hedonism and amorality at Court. simple action. Restoration comedy praised wit.1.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 1 Let us revise some aspects concerning the Restoration drama. T F 7. 1. Read the statements below and identify five true ones. elegance. T F 6. The baroque character of Restoration heroic tragedy resided in its sensational plot. Restoration theatre introduced professional women actors in performances. who resorts to all kinds of devices to avoid 92 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Renaissance comedy of humours inspired Restoration dramatists in their construction of dramatic character. by doing the exercise that follows.4. such as the impoverished gallant. T F 3. The middle classes and their moral code found a mirror in the comedy of the Restoration. to 4.1. extravagant stage settings and highly rhetorical language. The Restoration rake as a typical character in comedy was representative for the atmosphere of licentiousness. T F 9. The main themes of heroic tragedy were seduction and the games of love. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). Restoration comedy built its plot on a single. a master of satirical comedy of manners Among the most representative authors of comedies during the Restoration period there were George Etherege*. T F 5.3. at the end of the unit.1. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. William Wycherley* and John Dryden*. T F 8. frivolity. T F 4. William Congreve.1. If any of them should turn out to be wrong. T F 2.

the witty and resourceful servant. psychologically subtle and complex. restore his fortunes and win the love of his mistress. as these were remote from their experience. affection. with a rare concern for the accuracy and elegance of expression and for the balance of sentences. the pair of witty lovers. the dramatic productions still preserved characteristic farcical elements and something of the brilliant artificiality of Restoration comedy. half-sad. involving a multitude of characters. but they were now clearly intended for a middle class audience. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 93 . bringing it to perfection. The new audience in the theatres. and the shifting relationships and alliances. 4. Drama was changing under the pressure of middle class taste. admiration. The situation. and friendship to jealousy. Towards the end of the 17 th century. consistent characters. hate and disgust) give this play an equivocal tone. perfectly aware of each other’s faults and playing various games which keep them on the border between independence and surrender. He gave grace to the conventions of a highly artificial form of drama. A shift in taste was taking place in the context of social change – the rise of a prosperous class of merchants. when Augustan* England was seeking for social stability and cohesion. the ambivalent motivations and feelings (ranging from love.1. adopting a moralising tone and recommending virtue and sensibility above refinement and wit. and were not interested in the rituals and games of fashionable life or in the sparkling wit duels. mixed marriages between aristocracy and the newly rich. The indecencies and blasphemous spirit of earlier Restoration comedy became the object of severe condemnation by public opinion. He is the most gifted of the Restoration dramatists. and it had to take into account the general concern for the improvement of manners that developed in the late 17th century.5. disapproved of the licentiousness of Restoration comedy. which reminds of some of Shakespeare’s comedies. Congreve’s finest comedy is The Way of the World (1700). increasingly middle class. The rise of sentimental comedy* Congreve belongs to a period of transition in the evolution of comedy. is extremely complex. half-amused. the awkward country-girl.The Restoration and the Augustan Age William Congreve (1679-1723) his creditors. etc. Congreve’s merit is to have turned stereotypical characters into credible. It has a sophisticated plot containing several strands of action and centering on the relation between Mirabell and beautiful Millamant.

at the end of the unit. they establish and agree on the terms of a "contract. in no more than 15 lines / 150 words. Mirabell is a reformed rake. who is sincerely in love with Millamant and wishes to marry her." Presenting their expectations from each other in a half-joking way. What is the idea of marriage that her conditions suggest? Answer in the space below. under the appearance of frivolity..1.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 2 In Congreve's play The Way of the World. but she accepts Mirabell's marriage proposal on certain conditions.. as well as the indicated fragment.4. read again subchapter 4. Millamant is also in love. they seem to be playing a game. in Act IV.1. However. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If there should be significant differences. Read Text 4. which presents Millamant's demands. 94 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . their agreement has serious implications. In a witty dialogue.

His main critical work is An Essay on Dramatic Poesy (1668). Alexander Pope brought to perfection Dryden’s achievements in poetic style and technique. Pope presents the basic concepts and theses of this literary orientation in a poetic form of remarkable elegance and clarity.2. English literary Neoclassicism* The Neoclassic aspiration for order. The excellence of their literary work and the elegance and force of their critical arguments made them central figures of the Augustan Age. The return to the ancient models of the classical era was accompanied by the sense of an analogy between the present of England and the Roman times of Caesar Augustus*. other great writers who were influenced by Neoclassicism or defended its doctrine were Jonathan Swift*. in a series of essays and prefaces where he discussed matters of literary composition and taste and defended his own literary practice. but it represents the quintessence of the Augustan literary ideal. such as the superiority of the Ancients over the Moderns. 4. and Alexander Pope* in the 18 th .2. Besides Dryden and Pope. Oliver Goldsmith* and Samuel Johnson*. and he laid the foundations of modern literary criticism. in which he systematises his Neoclassic view on literary art. of the elegant French classical drama over English Renaissance drama. balance. John Dryden illustrated with masterpieces all contemporary literary genres. and propriety would favour the spirit of social unity and order and would contribute to the protection of the achievements of civilisation. Joseph Addison*. and harmony extended beyond literature. elegance. John Dryden (1631-1700) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 95 . The dialogue form of this essay allows Dryden to avoid being dogmatic and to look with healthy scepticism at a wide range of critical issues. Augustan England believed that a cultural idea of balance. In it. His work doesn’t equal in variety that of his predecessor and master.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. a society exhausted by civil wars was expressing its need for stability and moderation. His didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711) is the most outstanding literary manifesto of English Neoclassicism. In both cases. or of the heroic couplet* over blank verse*.1. Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Two great writers constituted the main influence in the development of the Neoclassic literary doctrine in England: John Dryden in the 17 th century.

which usually presented ordinary people and actions. It was the existence of this rule of decorum that enabled Neoclassic authors to derive great effects from its deliberate. skilful transgression. Sometimes rules might be too constraining for this natural gift. yet achieve great beauty.3. A poet’s innate talent needed training. Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics One of the most important features of literary Neoclassicism was the concern with rules and norms.2. The concept of Human Nature referred to those features of human character and experience. was Shakespeare. The study of human nature in its individual aspects. i. and the poet might disregard them. Nature and Reason According to the Neoclassic doctrine. the emphasis on discipline in art. To follow / copy Nature was the writer’s main endeavour. whose imagination had nothing to do with training or learning. to make form and substance adequate to each other. which were seen as common to all humanity and as permanent and unchanging. in satirical or burlesque* works. The Augustans were aware that the heights of literary achievement couldn’t be reached by simply learning the trade. required an elevated style.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and in order to do that accurately he was supposed to follow Reason as the main guide. which in turn required good judgment and common sense. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Human Nature 96 . and whose creative power was a matter of intuitive genius and not of acquired art. humble style. for instance. that it was an inborn gift that made a poet. skill. The rule of decorum 4. lacking ornament.e. but a general intellectual tendency in the age. who respected no particular rules and followed no particular models. a dignified diction. was expected to use a common.2. on the other hand. comedy. The most eloquent example. i. The Neoclassic emphasis on the principles and rules that guided successful creation did not mean blind adherence to them. Epic and tragedy. would lead to the revelation of the typical and universal features. This was the case of the genius. and he could master the secrets of poetic art by the study and imitation of the works of ancient authors. The belief in order and correctness was reflected in the neoclassic principle of decorum [from Latin: propriety]. which referred to the writer’s obligation to use those elements of diction* and composition which were considered proper for each genre. by which the Augustans meant most frequently Human Nature. Following Nature presupposed first of all its understanding. since it dealt with noble characters and actions. the most valuable store of literary experience.2. and to those patterns of behaviour. of infinite variety. the main source of inspiration for the writer was Nature*.e.. The quest for patterns of general significance through the study of particulars was not only a literary precept. for the Augustans.

read again subchapter 4. but also to imported French ideas – e. or art*. Emotion was supposed to be filtered and controlled by reason. The rationalist poetics* of Neoclassicism owed greatly to Horace*. If there should be significant differences.The Restoration and the Augustan Age A rationalist poetics All the faculties involved in the process of creation were seen as subordinated to Reason.3. a combination achieved through reason. and the indicated fragment. to those of Nicolas Boileau*. and beauty was the result of the balanced combination of talent and inspiration with skill.2. What are the main ideas in this fragment. at the end of the unit. in the Reader represents a fragment from Samuel Johnson’s Preface to his 1765 edition of Shakespeare’s works. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and what Neoclassic conviction do they imply? Answer in the space below. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 97 .g. in a paragraph of no more than 4 complex sentences (80-100 words / 8-10 lines). SAQ 3 Text 4.3.

too. “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The Neoclassic concern with standards of good writing must be seen in connection with an important feature of Augustan literature: its integration with social life. of the belief in progress an in man’s perfectibility. precision and clarity. and he was not supposed to withdraw in an ivory tower. The periodical essay Although the normative poetics of Neoclassicism had in view mainly poetry and drama. manners and taste. A more straightforward style in prose was an imperative in an age so much concerned with education of mentalities. the language of prose aimed more and more at simplicity. where nothing seems to be studied. refinement with wisdom. and the measure of the writer’s skill was his ability to convey an impression of “natural easiness and unaffected grace. eloquence with restraint. The Augustan ideal of style The suitable doctrine for the Age of Reason. with the cultivation of men’s best virtues through polite learning*. affectation were rejected. The periodical essay is the Augustan prose genre which contributed immensely to the forging of a modern prose style.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4.5. its effects were considerable on prose. In the context of general progress. but also moral edification and standards of good judgment and behaviour. The marked didactic tendency of much of the literature of this period reflects the Augustans’ pride in the conquests of their civilisation and their determination to assume responsibility for the defence of its achievements. and which illustrated most eloquently the didactic impulse of all Augustan literature.2.3. as Oliver Goldsmith defined it.4. Literature was supposed to delight but also to instruct – to offer not only aesthetic pleasure. 4. or. “grace and strength united.” Augustan wit 4. It must not be forgotten that this was the age of the Enlightenment*. Wit described a style which combined elegance with profundity. Neoclassicism cultivated an ideal of style characterised in the first place by intellectual clarity and expressive restraint.2. of critical debate in every field. 98 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and of the increase and diversification of the reading public. It displayed flexibility skilfully controlled. This ideal of style is best summed up by the Augustan notion of wit. The writer's art was a form of social communication. yet everything is extraordinary” (Thomas Sprat*). unnecessary ornament. of quick accumulation of information. but to be a functional part of the community. Ostentation.

the periodical essayists aimed at broadening the intellectual horizon of their readers. opened in 1688. Many periodical essays were dedicated to the dissemination of philosophical and scientific notions. for a clientele of ships' captains. consisting in essays on a variety of topics. merchants and ship owners 17th century coffee house in Covent Garden Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 99 . that “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. as a reaction to the ever greater demand for political news and gossip. or to the discussion of literary matters. At the same time. The reflections on both modern and ancient works. at cultivating their minds. and to offer intellectual enlightenment to a wide audience. at a time when political tension in the country and the events of war on the Continent engaged public attention to a high degree. and they were published with varying regularity. the debate on a variety of critical and aesthetic issues made the latter familiar to the public.The Restoration and the Augustan Age It developed in the late 17 and early 18th centuries. the enlightenment and the improvement of taste of its widest section.” that ignorance is a source of evil. They believed. Journalism and coffee houses* were the main instruments by which people’s curiosity was satisfied. In order to counterbalance this tendency. the middle class readers. The periodical essay constituted a chronicle of contemporary manners and an effective instrument of moral and social criticism. th Edward Lloyd’s coffee house. some of them being issued daily. Some writers felt that this popular avidity for political news might inflame partisanship and favour a spirit of social discord. they created an alternative kind of periodical publication. Essay periodicals were usually the work of a single author. contributing significantly to the “polite” education. dominantly middle class. with Alexander Pope. meant to provide guidance in matters of manners and morals.

Think of present relevance of this remark. were Richard Steele*’s The Tatler* (1709-1711). Joseph Addison wrote: The mind that lies fallow* but [i.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 4 In one of his periodical essays. they tried to make their essays not only instructive but also attractive and amusing. think again and try to do the exercise once more. If they are significantly different.3. on a separate sheet. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in no more than 12 lines / 120 words. To increase the efficiency of their undertaking. “The Spectator’s Club” Among the most important periodical essayists. collected in book form.1. and by far the most popular ones. 100 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . only] a single day sprouts up* in follies that are only to be killed by an assiduous culture. The Tatler and The Spectator. 4. at the end of the unit. Explain the analogy that his observation invites us to develop.e. Like other writers. whose essays were published several times in the century. Steele and Addison assumed the mission of public educators and proceeded to rescue their audience from what they perceived as “that desperate state of vice and folly into which the age is fallen” (Steele). and Joseph Addison’s The Spectator (1711-1714).

manners.” of wide learning. strong reason. he is a somewhat old-fashioned gentleman. in which they collaborated. Now. a middle-aged squire. • Sir Andrew Freeport. “a very philosophic man. and the reflections of “Mr.” • Captain Sentry. and sloth [i. that “it is stupid and barbarous way to extend dominion by arms. Spectator” on their opinions and behaviour in a variety of circumstances constituted real lessons in manners and morals. He believes. instead of pursuing the career of a lawyer.e. and his harmless eccentricities are accompanied by a natural benevolence that endears him to everybody. an expert in fashion and gossip.e. Steele and Addison invented The Spectator’s Club. actions and writings of the ancients makes him a very delicate observer of what occurs to him in the world. bravery in battle]. idleness] has ruined more nations than the sword. an embodiment of its energies and enterprising spirit.” He thus embodies the Augustan humanist view that true knowledge of human nature comes from a combination of first hand experience and learning.e. laziness. hard work and skill. no longer as repulsively materialistic and greedy. • A clergyman. in his county. skills] and industry. turned to the study of literature. 101 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . • A gentleman who. • Will Honeycomb.” but whose life constitutes an eloquent example of moral integrity. who had to quit the military profession because his strict honesty proved to be an obstacle to the advancement of his career. He is a man of “great probity. who had spent a turbulent youth in the company of the Restoration Wits. He is a pleasant company for his acquaintances in town.e. wit and understanding.” and “his familiarity with the customs. The six members of The Spectator’s Club were: • Sir Roger de Coverley. Many essays presented little stories about incidents in their daily lives. a courageous. steady effort] makes more lasting acquisitions than valour [i. “a person of indefatigable industry*. otherwise harmless and a well-bred gentleman. a group of six fictional characters “engaged in different ways of life” and representing various social and human types.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Joseph Addison (1672-1719) For example. for The Spectator. but their good breeding qualifies them both for the same society of gentlemen. a competent justice of the peace*. He is the prototype for the character of the country squire in many 18th century novels. interested in his appearance and displaying a certain affectation in behaviour.” or that “diligence [i. ready to take responsibility for the progress of the nation. for true power is to be got by arts [i. taciturn and with “no interest in this world. His wisdom and gravity are set against the frivolous interests of Will Honeycombe. rather than a merit. Sir Andrew Freeport’s convictions are those of an enlightened middle class. a gallant. for instance. generous and cheerful. a rich London merchant. a model of honesty. His character is the first notable literary representation of the merchant class in a serious and dignified way. as his father had intended for him.” He is a worthy representative of the middle class. a man of the world. and great experience. modest and commonsensical person.

combining the external marks of social decency (pleasant conversation. which are important for the Enlightenment ideal of social integration. it is clear that Addison promotes certain virtues. read again subchapter 4. 2. 6. the talent of never offending the others) with such qualities as moral and physical courage. 5. Identify at least eight such features. 4.The Restoration and the Augustan Age The gentleman represented an ideal of social behaviour. common sense. a cultivated mind and superior understanding. 3.3. SAQ 5 From the description of the members of the Spectator’s Club. more carefully. 8. at the end of the unit. and write them in the indicated spaces below. cheerful disposition. 7. If there should be major discrepancies.1. Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729) 102 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 1. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.

genuinely gifted for leadership. a merciless attack on literary pedantry and dulness. 1743). intrigues. Samuel. struggle for power and profit. The best achieved portrait is that of Achitophel / the Earl of Shaftesbury. often touched by ironic humour. appears also as a stormy spirit. Augustan satire The refinement and elegant surface of the Augustan Age. the Duke of Monmouth. from political and social life. its cult of reason and common sense.2. could not entirely remove or hide its tensions. Bayes*. to religious debates and literary practices. Absalom is the latter’s illegitimate son. folly. made king by the Goddess Dulness* in a realm turned to complete confusion by the vain ambitions of the Dunces – the multitude of bad writers and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 103 . selfishness. Augustan satire defended the values of civilisation in a civilised way: elegance. urbanity and refinement made it a sophisticated instrument of correction. are mingled: the evil conspirator.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and satire became their formidable weapon. Political and religious dissensions. The perfection of Dryden’s diction and his masterful use of the sketches heroic couplet* combine with his brilliant of character. the instigator of the opposition to Catholic James Stuart. 4. stability and order of a remarkable civilisation. 15-18). king David. disloyal and excessively ambitious.4. The Augustan Age is the great age of satire in English literature. Perhaps the greatest Augustan satire on the world of letters is Alexander Pope’s The Dunciad* (1728. Pope. Charles’s brother and heir to the throne. admiration and condemnation. The biblical characters represent English political figures: King David is Charles II. brave and fearless man. whose claim to the throne was justified by his Protestant religion. and its most outstanding representatives – Dryden. and affectation were felt as diseases which threatened to weaken the force. It tells the biblical story of Absalom’s rebellion against his father. 4. turning it into an allegory of contemporary political struggles.4. contradictions and dark aspects. Alexander Pope Satirical attacks on literary mediocrity and incompetence were frequent in an age so preoccupied with standards of correctness and excellence. The hero of this mock-heroic epic* is Mr. hypocrisy. The writers’ sense of mission turned them into guardians of the enlightened values of their time. Swift – aimed it at a variety of targets. a passionate. John Dryden A remarkable example of political satire is John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel (1681-1682).4. in which Dryden’s praise and criticism. with implications concerning the whole of Augustan civilisation. and Achitophel is the first Earl of Shaftesbury.1. greed. at the advice of Achitophel* (cf.

4. Art. concerning satire. Its implications. in a paragraph not exceeding 12 lines / 120 words. 104 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . more attentively. Pope’s satirical allegory displays unequalled comic virtuosity and wit. Compare your answer with the suggestions provided at the end of the unit. however. imaginative inventiveness. he reflects on the art of the satirist. and the satire ends with the apocalyptic extinction of the enemies of Dulness: Fancy (i.e. SAQ 6 Text 4. as it betrays Pope’s fear that civilisation and its conquests are vulnerable to unreason. The empire of Dulness finally extends to the whole universe of the spirit. Truth. Philosophy. are more disturbing than entertaining. and Morality. and skill in the use of parody and the burlesque. Explain this analogy. imagination). If it should be significantly different. The final triumph of this “great Anarch*” is rendered by a parodic allusion to the biblical Genesis: the “uncreated word*” of Dulness restores the primordial chaos.2. that the corruption of the spirit (which follows from the corruption of the word) leads to the crumbling of all order. drawing an analogy between satire and a public execution. Science. Religion. in the Reader represents a fragment from one of John Dryden’s essays. read the fragment again. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. pointing out the Augustan conception of satire. Here.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Alexander Pope (1688-1744) critics who aspire to undeserved fame. and revise subchapter 4.

4. is inhabited by impractical intellectuals. and the disappointment and anger at seeing reason so often abused. In his third voyage he visits several strange places. Jonathan Swift. From this last country. in his potential as a rational creature. These satires have established his reputation as a champion of moral virtue. combining the conventions of utopia* and of the imaginary voyage. curious and resourceful. In his last voyage. because he is perceived as a Yahoo endowed with “a rudiment of reason.” therefore a potential threat to that civilisation.A Voyage to Lilliput II. Swift alludes satirically to a multitude of aspects from the contemporary political. he is shown the Academy of Lagado (a burlesque of the Royal Society). Gulliver finds himself among people who are twelve times smaller and. It is an allegorical satirical travel book. and where human creatures. an uncompromising defender of truth. whose admirable society is built entirely on rational principles. and literary. economic. appear in the utmost state of degeneracy. building houses starting from the roof. a race of immortal people whose eternal life is in fact a curse of endless decay. is one of the greatest satirists in world literature. Balnibarbi. popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. social and intellectual realities. and his nostalgia for the perfect world of the 105 I. like extracting sunshine from cucumbers.4. justice and freedom. respectively. Gulliver can’t help seeing his fellow humans as disgusting Yahoos.4. bigger than himself. Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) 4. In Luggnagg. Gulliver is finally expelled. In Balnibarbi. His hurt sensitivity and disillusionment are conveyed in a series of prose satires which cover a wide range of issues – political.” a work which Swift published anonymously in 1726. Swift was divided between the idealist confidence in man’s capacity of selfimprovement.3. absorbed in mathematical speculations and music. with elements of the marvelous or fantastic fable. Laputa.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. whose adventures as a surgeon and then the captain of several ships take him through the most unusual places. The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Consisting of four books. religious. Glubbdubdrib.A Voyage to Brodingnag III.A Voyage to Laputa. Luggnagg and Japan IV. where mad scientists are engaged in phantasmagoric projects. The most powerful expression of Swift’s satirical genius is Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World “by Lemuel Gulliver. with a sharp sense of observation.A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnhnms Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . In Lilliput and Brobdingnag. the flying island. Back in England. as well as an unequalled master of satirical wit and irony. a hater of pedantry and pretence. or softening marble to make pincushions. he learns about the Struldbruggs. Gulliver’s Travels pretends to be the record of the most astonishing experiences of an average man. Jonathan Swift Pope’s friend. but the significance of his work may be extended to the philosophical question of the human condition itself. philosophical. Like many of his contemporaries. intelligent speaking horses. In it. Gulliver is cast on the shore of a country inhabited by the Houyhnhnms. the Yahoos.

The parallel results in a grotesque image of humankind. His initial curiosity and openness to the diversity of human nature turns into madness and misanthropy. 106 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . If none of the features mentioned there corresponds with your answers.The Restoration and the Augustan Age rational horses alienates him completely from his own kind.5. and he prefers now the company of horses. at the end of the unit. read the fragment carefully once more. Find. 2. 4. Each answer should be limited to 3 lines / 30 words. incapable of suffering the proximity of humans. and he also re-interprets attitudes observed in the Yahoos in the light of the information received from Gulliver about human customs and institutions. four features which humans and Yahoos are found to share. 1. SAQ 7 Gulliver’s Houyhnhnm master tries to understand human nature by analysing the behaviour of the Yahoos (since he perceives Gulliver to be one). from the Reader. who is thus forced to examine itself in a distorting mirror. in Text 4. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 3.

vain. issues or figures. ambitious. Gulliver in Brobdingnag 4. He is no longer certain of the essence of his own nature.4. Political corruption is institutionalised (for example. or between those who break a boiled egg at the round end – the "Big Endians" – and those who break it at the pointed end).6. The Yahoos and the Houyhnhnms are a double mirror for Gulliver. he is actually physically vulnerable in this world. its political parties – Whigs and Tories –. Gulliver’s failure to accept the mixed essence of man. The fourth voyage. In the Yahoos. Gulliver. The error of Gulliver* is that he adopts an impossible deal of perfection. between those who wear shoes with high heels and with low heels. but their universe is completely deprived of emotion and feeling.). with its religious controversies among Anglicans. the frustrated idealist After the comic-disturbing examples of unreason witnessed in his third voyage. by dancing on a rope. In the Houyhnhnms. and they constitute a miniature picture of England. ruled by an enlightened monarch. Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia In the first two books of Gulliver’s Travels.4. The Lilliputians’ physical smallness is accompanied by moral flaws – they prove to be mean. Their society is deeply divided by absurd dissensions: for example. and his position in that strange land is highly ambiguous. In spite of Gulliver’s dimensions (an allegorical representation of his complex of superiority). of the capacity for affection. The Houyhnhnms may be an allegorical embodiment of moral perfection attained through the exercise of pure reason. cruel and hypocritical.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. These comic details are satirical allusions to contemporary or recent events. forgetting that man holds a middle place in the Great Chain of Being*. Gulliver is confronted. he contemplates with shame and despair all the imperfections of the human race. In Brobdingnag. in his last adventure. and he realises how far man is from moral perfection. the highest offices in the state are obtained by those who know how to entertain the king best. jumping over or creeping under a stick. his real humiliation is caused by the unflattering contrast between his own race and civilisation. etc. means de-humanisation. with the hardest dilemma and the deepest humiliation. However. Their non-human shape suggests that the absence of passion. Dissenters and Catholics.5. physical size indicates allegorically features of human nature. The latter is shocked at the moral abjection and contempt for reason that he discerns under the gilded surface of Gulliver’s patriotic description of his country. governed only by reason. its thirst for war – the endless conflict with France. as he is in permanent danger from creatures so much larger than him. etc. from which he chooses to leave. and the utopian commonwealth of Brobdingnag. to integrate Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 107 . his vulnerability increases. he sees ideal creatures.

Houyhnhnm and Yahoo . In a “theological” perspective. Illustration from an early nineteenth century abridged editions (for children): Gulliver entertaining and being entertained by the tiny Lilliputians. For many readers. unteachable and ungovernable. or as opposite caricatural views of man in the state of nature. the Yahoos embodied Swift’s own vision of mankind as hopelessly degraded. The last book of Gulliver’s Travels has been given a multitude of interpretations. an image which earned Swift the reputation of a misanthrope.illustration from a 1947 edition of Gulliver’s Travels 108 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the Yahoos would stand for the essentially corrupt nature of man. The Houyhnhms and the Yahoos have also been seen as allegorical representations of Reason and Instinct. while the Houyhnhms would represent man who has escaped the consequences of the original sin. filthy. makes him a frustrated idealist.The Restoration and the Augustan Age reason with feeling and instinct. and he ultimately becomes the target of Swift’s irony.

however. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. more carefully. Formulate your answer in no more than 10 lines / 100 words for each aspect.4. Point out both kinds of aspects in the description contained in Text 4. and to revise subchapter 4. If there should be major differences. For Gulliver. find anti-utopian elements in it. you need to read the fragment again. from the Reader.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 8 Swift’s ironic method is to mislead the reader by giving the appearance of rationality to the absurd. and by mixing the desirable with the unacceptable. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 109 .6. The careful reader will. the Houyhnhnms’ society is perfect – a true utopia.6. Utopian aspects: Anti-utopian aspects Compare your answer with the one provided at the end of the unit.

was another characteristic genre. For Swift. Johnson are central figures of the Augustan Age. Swift’s allegorical satire Gulliver’s Travels is the most accomplished exploration of the contradictions of the Age of Reason.7. Pope. Steele.g. and his brilliant wit make Gulliver’s Travels not only a landmark in Augustan literature. Its flourishing in the Augustan Age reflects the integration of literature with social life. 110 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . generally. One of the literary forms that developed during this period was the periodical essay (Addison. Dryden. when literary Neoclassicism developed.4. and. a masterpiece of irony which places under scrutiny many of the myths of the Enlightenment. placing wit above virtue. the pressure of the taste of the rising middle class replaced it with sentimental comedy. The latter’s eminently rationalist poetics placed emphasis on clarity and elegance in style and composition. was enlightened in matters of literary taste and intellectual achievements. Dryden. Congreve.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. therefore also capable of error. Dryden). this highly artificial and conventional form was an expression of the taste of the Court aristocracy. grotesque. arrogant ignorance and unfounded pride in his reason. Swift’s extraordinary inventiveness and narrative gift. Pope) and in prose (Swift). Summary The Restoration is a historical and a literary period. the belief in progress and improvement in an age which was also that of the Enlightenment. etc. The period of the Restoration overlaps with the emerging Augustan Age. parody. but also an enduring achievement of the enlightened spirit. dominantly middle class.). a wide public. both in verse (Dryden. his learning and sense of literary tradition. It was a chronicle of manners and an instrument of social and moral criticism. on the rule of decorum. including that of Reason itself. Satire. and by means of it. While heroic drama sustained an impossible. on expressive restraint and skilfully controlled wit. caricature. It cultivated the idea of the “marriage” of Art and Nature. accommodating a diversity of literary forms and traditions – old and new. the writers’ sense of responsibility towards the values of their civilisation. and recommended as a model the literary wisdom of the Ancients. comedy was licentious and cynical. on Reason and common sense in aesthetic choice. reason was not to be taken for granted: man was only a creature capable of reason. which contributed greatly to the development of a modern prose style. Steele). Gradually. Goldsmith. It is an age of transition. inflated ideal of heroism and virtue. Addison. A representative literary genre for this age is the comedy of manners (Etherege. He intended to “vex the world” in order to “mend” it. The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Gulliver’s Travels is the expression of Swift’s indignation and anger at man’s foolishness. narrow-sightedness. Swift. and he used every weapon in the satirist’s arsenal to awaken man from his selfcomplacency: biting irony. Like heroic tragedy (e.

” where Dryden would come regularly. it may also refer to a woman’s lover. beaux: plural of beau (“handsome” in French). Anarch: a personification of anarchy. the acquired competence of the writer. Augustan: see Augustan Age in the Glossary in Unit 1. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. in the 2nd Book of Kings (verses 15-18). In Pope’s satire. or human skill (as contrasted to the work of Nature). acquiring quickly the status of real “institutions” of opinion. his craftsmanship. “Will’s Coffee House. greatly concerned with appearances. all the acquisitions of the human spirit become meaningless. Art may generally refer to the work of man. For instance. they were convenient places for socialising and for the dissemination of news. coffee houses: since the 1650s. 111 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which designated a fashionable. dress or behaviour which is not natural.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Key words • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • The Restoration The Augustan Age heroic tragedy comedy of manners Neoclassicism rationalist poetics Nature/Human Nature art wit to delight and instruct periodical essay The Spectator’s Club satire allegory utopia irony Glossary • • • Achitophel: the story of Absalom and Achitophel is told in The Old Testament. gathered people of the literary profession or interested in literary matters. achieved by training and practice. In her empire of darkness and confusion. art: in the Neoclassic doctrine. affectation: a manner of speech. or escort. political or religious orientation. well-dressed man. but is intended to impress others. baroque: see again subchapter 2. They were usually frequented by people of the same social rank.1. profession or interest. Dulness as “Great Anarch” is the ruler of spiritual chaos. and the Glossary in Unit 2.1. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. admirer.

who had criticised Pope for his edition of Shakespeare (1725). industry: the quality of being hard-working or of being always employed usefully. landscape. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. who in 1730 had become Poet Laureate.3 in Unit 1. characters were constructed on the basis of a particular disposition. inclination. but to the whole of created reality. “Dull” also means uninteresting. or “humour.3 in Unit 1 (heroic drama). a strictly ordered hierarchical system.4. fop: a man who is excessively concerned with fashion and elegance. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. dulness: in a strict sense. In the 1743 version of The Dunciad. Bayes: a name which was frequently applied satirically to a writer. Pope replaced Theobald by Colley Cibber. heroic tragedy: see again subchapter 1.” another word for “laurel”.” diction : see poetic diction in the Glossary in Unit 1.” a “force inertly strong” which corrupts understanding and confuses the mind. Pope uses the word in the enlarged sense of “all slowness of apprehension. stupidity. boring. justice of the peace: a person appointed by the crown to judge less serious cases in small courts of law. the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 112 . Bayes” refers to Lewis Theobald. licentiousness: uncontrolled sexual behaviour. mock-heroic epic: see mock-heroic style and epic in the Glossary in Unit 1. trait . fallow: (about land) left unplanted or unseeded. In Pope’s satire. unexciting. Gulliver: the name sounds very similar to the adjective “gullible. from dunce. which conceived of every being in nature as having its well-established place in an uninterrupted chain of increasing degrees of complexity. “Mr.” Nature: an inclusive concept. to deceive). referring not only to external nature. shortness of sight or imperfect sense of things. Bayes. Dunciad: the title is coined after The Iliad.e. the bay-leaf crown was the ancient emblem of fame. surviving through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance into the 18th century. Mr. i. honour. It derives from “bay. in which the destruction of one “link” would bring chaos. and distinction. slowness in thinking and learning. figuratively: undeveloped or inactive.” which means easy to fool or persuade to believe something (from “to gull”: to cheat. a word designating a person who is stupid or slow to learn. hedonism: a lifestyle devoted to the seeking of sensual pleasure. Dryden himself had been attacked several times as “Mr. In this kind of comedy.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • comedy of humours: see Jonson in the Glossary in Unit 1. Great Chain of Being: an ancient world-picture.

He established the periodical essay as a literary genre.3 in Unit 1) and of comedies of manners. he translated from ancient authors. Restoration Wits: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. He excelled in all literary genres of his time. author of poems. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Tatler: a “tattler” is a person who gossips.1. Gallery of personalities • • • Addison. or literature in general.4. squire: a country gentleman. elegant. perfect society (literally: “no place. essays and dramatic works. and he was the pioneer of modern English literary criticism. sprout up: to begin to grow or develop. for the notion of sentimentalism. Among the latter. Pope’s satire warns thus about the dangers of lowering literary standards. this phrase suggests the lack of inspiration. i. uncreated word: with reference to the literary world. Neoclassicism: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. poetics: the system of principles and conventions which govern a certain literary form. of taste or skill. Marriage à la Mode (1672) distinguishes itself by its brilliant wit combats and effective social satire.e. founder of literary journalism. polite learning: the knowledge acquired through classical education (polite: refined. John (1637-1700): one of the most outstanding figures of the Restoration and the Augustan Age. He was equally successful as an author of heroic dramas (see again subchapter 1. sentimental comedy see again subchapter 1. Dryden.4 in Unit 1. and he contributed significantly to the dissemination of the values of the Enlightenment in England. or who chats or talks idly.” utopia: a genre in fiction whose name comes from Sir Thomas More’s work Utopia (1516). and sentimental novel in subchapter 5. in which he outlines the features of an ideal.” from Greek u = not. the conception about literature and the creative act of a certain literary school or writer. 113 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and topos = place).4. especially the main landowner in a village.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • cosmic harmony and order manifested in the appearances of this world.3 in Unit 5. of imagination and originality. polished). Joseph (1672-1719): representative of English literary Neoclassicisn. making literature “dull. whose poem L’art poétique (1674) established the canons of taste and the standards of literary judgement for European Neoclassicism. Boileau. wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Nicolas (1636-1711): outstanding French poet and critic.

clear. In the mock-heroic allegory The Battle of the Books (1704). member of the Royal Society. he argues for the superiority of the Ancients over modern authors. which contains an allegorical satire on the division of the Christian Church. Hogarth. Latin poet of the time of Caesar Augustus. William (1697-1764): painter and engraver. a bitter satire in defense of the Irish people. Alexander (1688-1744): the most illustrious representative of English literary Neoclassicism. William (1640-1716): one of the Restoration Wits. a masterpiece of 18th century fiction. Jonathan (1667-1745): the greatest English satirist. Samuel: see the Gallery of personalities in Unit 2.). Swift. he contributed to the spreading of Enlightenment ideas. an unequalled master of irony and wit. 114 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His works include the philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). author of odes. concise and flexible. Johnson. He was a friend of the novelist Henry Fielding. political and moral vices. Pope.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • Etherege. Oliver (1728-1774): upholder of the Neoclassic standards of style and composition. his works include A Tale of a Tub (1704). who called him a “comic history-painter. preoccupied by the cultivation of an English style that should be simple. Like his friend. satires and epistles. and a major representative of English sentimentalism. he is the author of the novel The Vicar of Wakefield (1766). Goldsmith. extremely popular owing to his “modern moral subjects” – a series of paintings or engravings which tell a story and constitute a comment on social. Among various other works. and The Man of Mode. Wycherley. George (1634-1691): a member of the group of Restoration Wits. Sprat. of Irish origin. Together with Addison.C. Besides his famous Gulliver’s Travels. or Sir Fopling Flutter (1676). in which he is the optimistic spokesman of the Age of Reason. Virgil. as well as the mock-heroic poem The Rape of the Lock (1712). and of the influential critical work Ars Poetica. as well as to the forging of a polished literary prose style. Steele. His best comedies are She Would If She Could (1668). Richard (1672-1725): Augustan essayist and dramatist (he established sentimental comedy on the English stage). Thomas (1635-1713): mathematician and writer. and A Modest Proposal (1729). His comedies The Country Wife (1675) and The Plain Dealer (1676) satirise the discrepancies between the social surface of respectability and the unscrupulous selfishness that may hide behind it. he endeavoured to lift Latin literature to the level of Greek literature.” Horace: Quintus Horatius Flavius (65-8 B.

sense of responsibility. of those features which are universal. good sense. open-mindedness. by the standards of her social environment. for sophisticated Millamant. His characters embody the fundamental human passions which will always move mankind. common sense.F. integrity. Dryden makes an analogy between the sharp blade of the executioner’s sword and the sharp irony and wit of the satirist.T. 8. and should not try to impose his/her habits on the other.T. regardless of their particular condition. modesty. Culture is thus seen as an improvement of nature. In marriage.T. reasonableness. which may be cultivated or left to “lie fallow. 9. benevolence. Civilised reserve in society. of Human nature.T.F. and she proposes to reject the social rituals and fashions that would require them to wear masks.” Shakespeare will appeal to readers across the ages.F. common to all humanity – is greater than the pleasure of “sudden wonder” procured by the depiction of “particular manners” and by “fanciful invention. 5. SAQ 3 The pleasure of contemplating representations of “general nature” – i.” Just as weeds (i. 7. in an analogous sense. wild plants growing where they are not wanted) will invade an uncultivated field. is. good breeding. because he succeeded in rendering the general “truths” of human nature. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 115 . abdicating from reason.e. educated to think – will employ itself with trifles. furnished with ideas. diligence. 2. She wishes for a sincere and authentic relationship.e. Addison’s observation reflects the faith in man’s intellectual and moral perfectibility through responsible education – an attitude characteristic of the Enlightenment. a way of protecting their intimacy and their feelings. and. 4.T. Johnson implies that an author’s greatness depend on his insight into Human Nature.F SAQ 2 Millamant has an unconventional view of marriage. each partner should accept and respect the other’s wishes. SAQ 5 honesty. 3. so the mind which is not assiduously and constantly cultivated – i. and she rejects the idea of the wife’s subordination. She also refuses to see marriage as a limitation of the woman’s freedom. the refusal to make a public show of their affection. or judgment. SAQ 4 Addison builds an analogy between the human mind and a field.e.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. Her desire to preserve an area of privacy in her domestic life reflects the fact that she does not conceive love and marriage as incompatible with one’s independence. industry. opinions and tastes. good judgment. 6. SAQ 6 Satire is the art of pointing at people’s faults without resorting to insult or calumny.

The spirit of competition. Preda. 3. 180-187) 3. which breeds imaginary ills. the generalises extension of friendship and benevolence. Both of them need skill – or “art” – to do this in a satisfactory way. Macsiniuc. 5. SAQ 8 Utopian aspects: The cultivation and exercise of reason. the silly behaviour of women determined to draw attention to themselves. David.. which makes social progress inconceivable. Ioan-Aurel (coord. The Houyhnhms are not divided by quarrels. only the species counts. The incapacity of choosing a ruler according to real merit. Editura Universităţii Suceava. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică.33-66) 116 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Anti-utopian aspects: the absolutisation of reason. decency and civility are certainly desiderata of any civilisation. The irrational greed and avarice. Cornelia. Further reading 1. The civilised art of satire is opposed to the coarseness and brutality of personal attack and insult. In the absence of affective attachment. 537-550) 2. The Novel in Its Beginnings. so the satirist is merciless in his denouncing human flaws. 1983 (pp. English Literature and Civilisation. conflict and self-interest. and the hierarchy of their society is based on racial discrimination (“inferior” Houyhnhnms will fatally be servants). the “unnatural appetite” for things whose value doesn’t justify the effort and energy spent in their acquisition and preservation. They practice population control. The English Eighteenth Century. the jealousy (envy) and the aggressiveness towards one’s fellows. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). and the equal education of males and females was a progressive Enlightenment ideal. A Critical History of English Literature. ultimately of imagination. the rulers’ habit of surrounding themselves by favourites whose role is to flatter and to encourage them in their abuses. Daiches. 2003 (pp. The tendency to idleness. the education in the spirit of moderation and industry. deprives their thinking of flexibility and nuance. 4. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. the exclusion of opinion.” SAQ 7 1. vol. and no personal choice in the matter of marriage. 1969 (pp. the “fineness. The individual is of no importance. which are the literary equivalent of a man’s “slovenly butchering. 2. civility and friendship become a cold and superficial form of social relationship. Womankind’s lustfulness and inclination to coquetry. which is meant only for procreation.).The Restoration and the Augustan Age Just as the executioner will implacably carry out the capital punishment. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. The art of the accomplished satirist consists in the elegance. The tyranny of reason also rules out affection and emotion: they have no particular feelings for their own offspring. the ability of the worst to set themselves as leaders.” the subtlety of his accusations.

5. 5.2. 5. 5. 5.2.5. 2 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 118 118 118 118 119 121 123 123 124 125 127 128 128 129 130 132 132 133 134 134 135 136 136 136 137 139 139 140 142 142 143 144 145 146 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 117 . 5. 5. 5.3. 5.6. 5.7. Unit objectives The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Background and main concerns Novel and romance in the 18th century Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Typology of the novel in the 18th century Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Interpretations of Robinson Crusoe Defoe’s style Samuel Richardson’s contribution to the development of the novel The plot of Pamela.3. 5.2.2. 5.1.2.4. 5. 5.8.4. 5.2.3.1.4.2.5.1.2.2.1.4. 5.5.4. or Virtue Rewarded Social hierarchy and the individual self Psychological realism and the epistolary technique Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The novel as comic romance The character of parson Adams Fielding’s conception of character in Joseph Andrews Fielding’s Augustanism Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The “Shandean” view of writing The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions Tristram Shandy as metafiction Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No. 5.4.3.2.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel UNIT 5 THE AGE OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT: THE RISE OF THE NOVEL Unit Outline 5 5. 5. 5. 5.3.2.3.1.6.4.2. 5.1.1. 5.3. 5.3.3.4. 5.4.2. 5.4.3.1.

of a genre which became the main rival of the novel: the romance. and whose protagonists were of noble stock. exotic settings. and their involvement with literary life was increasing. Women’s education was beginning to be encouraged. whose action was often set in remote. in the early years of the 18 th century. A significant part of this new reading public consisted in women. Such tales gratified the fantasies of a class of readers who were still barred from public self-assertion. Not only were women the most numerous “consumers” of novels. in the light of the author’s aesthetic principles ♦ describe the peculiarities of the narrative technique and style used by the studied authors ♦ define the concept of metafiction and describe metafictional strategies in Sterne’s novel Unit objectives 5. whose vast majority was middle-class. The general growth of literacy* in the 18 th century led to the rise of a new. 5. the rise of the middle classes. but there was a considerable amount of novels written by women. in various aspects of the novels discussed in this unit. and the development of the novel. a certain tendency to women’s emancipation.1. Background and main concerns The novel’s emergence is commonly associated with the aspiration of the middle classes to overcome cultural marginality.1. confined to the 118 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1. natural rights. values and attitudes characteristic of the Age of the Enlightenment ♦ describe typological features of the studied novels ♦ compare the studied novelists from the point of view of their approach to character and plot ♦ delineate a character from one of the novels under discussion. and there is a connection between. mostly imitations of French models. more inclusive reading public. tolerance. and generally about women. Novel and romance in the 18th century The dominance of female readership explains the enduring popularity. Romances were long narratives combining heroic adventure and passionate love. The late 17 th century had seen a flourishing of this kind of fiction. This new literary form embodied the democratic and revolutionary impulse of a century in which the issues of individual liberty.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify. emancipation and progress received unprecedented prominence and were vital for the self-assertion of the new class.

but from contemporary life. The novelist no longer drew his plots from mythology. the province of the novel was the familiar. Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Whereas the basic aim of romance was to entertain. its endeavour to propagate a certain moral and social code. in its concerns. truth to Nature – is what primarily distinguished the novel from romance. with entertainment frequently subordinated to the instructive aim. legend. realised with an unprecedented wealth of social. vague and abstract figures. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 119 . On the one hand. history. Characters are no longer idealised. The novel reflects. by common people. On the other hand. It attempted to correct morals and educate manners by censuring vice and folly. The novel proposed norms of moral conduct and standards of social integration. the novel’s didactic vocation. whose province was the spectacular and the extraordinary. For most women. its emphasis on individual experience is the literary expression of the spirit of individualism associated with the growing importance of the middle classes. but distinct individualities. its determination to participate in the general Augustan quest for an ideal of social harmony.2. Realism – or. their common denominator was the attempt to convey an impression of authentic experience. it recommended patterns of behaviour and models of success that were relevant to the condition of middle class readers. or previous literature. The ordinary aspects of life. socially and materially dependent on men.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel domestic universe. The represented experience was meant to engage the reader’s interest both because it was familiar and because of its uniqueness. moral or psychological detail. a double tendency of the Age of the Enlightenment. 5. the novel’s aspiration was to fulfil the double mission of all Augustan literature: to entertain (to divert) and to instruct (to edify). in Augustan terms. shows its assumed responsibility towards contemporary civilisation. The knights and princesses of romances were replaced. the novel reflected the general critical spirit of the Age of the Enlightenment and participated in its project of emancipation through education. its normality. to their relevance for the reader’s aspirations and possibilities. because the depicted experience and universe were more or less familiar to them. a reality that was close to the average reader’s experience became a source of imaginative interest. Thus. In spite of the great diversity of novels in the 18th century. in the novel. By contrast. The readers of novels could identify themselves with the characters.1. The popularity of the novel and the success of its didactic mission owed greatly to its endeavour of convincing the reader of the lifelikeness* of the represented characters and actions. romances were therefore literature of escape.

read again subchapters 5. The novel’s interest in the tensions between the public and the private reflected … Compare your answers with those given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Two or three lines (20-30 words) should be enough for each completion.1. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … 5. and 5. 120 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . by centering its interest on the relationship between the individual and his/her social environment. at the end of the unit. The rise of the middle classes … 2. SAQ 1 Complete the sentences below. Each full statement should describe a general aspect concerning the rise of the novel as a genre in the 18th century. If there should be major differences.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel offers imaginative versions of the reconciliation of these two tendencies. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. constitute the foundation of all novelistic plots in the 18 th century. on the one hand.1. The tensions and conflicts between private/individual convictions and inclinations.1. and public/social norms and conventions. Women were … 3.2. 1. on the other. … 4.

On the other hand. The sentimental hero/heroine unites a remarkably acute sensibility with spotless virtue and a deep sense of honour. or explore personal conflicts which involve different sets of values (e. and the world represented in such novels is open. exposing their irrelevance and unreality. The motif of the travel is central. forms of expression. The comic novel in the 18th century is inscribed in a long tradition of deflation of romance. The analysis of sentimental response was meant to elicit from the reader an empathic understanding. and which emphasised the importance of feeling and its close connection with moral virtue. misfortune to the solution of all conflicts and the integration of the protagonist in a social structure. and its beginnings are defined by a tendency to “sponge” on other literary forms. and the hero’s various encounters are. in which the action is episodic. The most popular kinds of novels in the 18th century were: Adventure novels share with romances an emphasis on action.g. inclusive. classic models to follow. a wide variety of influences went into its making. • • The novel of manners submits to the reader’s judgements various types of social behaviour. It may either offer a comprehensive mirror of the social diversity of the age (e. The characteristic comic plot presupposes the passage from disorder. Sentimentalism became a literary fashion. but to literature as well. The comic novel is an opportunity for writers to display a critical attitude not only to reality. the romance). but also in poetry and in drama. • The sentimental novel is the literary manifestation of that cross-current within the Age of the Enlightenment which placed value in emotional response rather than in reason.3. in imitation of the descriptive accuracy of travel literature. Instead. examining the conflicts between private morality and public expectation.e.g. therefore an ally to realism.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. i. Richardson). and extremely diverse. since this kind of fiction subverts the prestige of older genres (the epic. They invariably contain the motif of the journey.1. popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. displayed not only in fiction. loosely structured. • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 121 . Fielding). patterns and motifs. for the author. their distance from the every day experience of common readers. • Picaresque* novels may be considered a special case of adventure novels. Many novels cut across divisions. the comic vision is always in the service of social and moral criticism. which claim the reader’s attention more than the characters do. confusion. an opportunity for comprehensive social criticism. This makes the 18th century novel rather difficult to classify. Typology of the novel in the 18th century The novel as a genre had no authoritative. but they differ from romances in their attention to realistic detail. on events. irony and burlesque*. romance is trivialised through parody*. repetitious. belonging to several categories at once. from which it borrowed devices.

in an atmosphere of gloom. If you have failed to match any of the descriptions with the right type of novel. ________________________ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and his/her experiences provide a satirical survey of the contemporary society. at the end of the unit. It is concerned with the individual’s full assertion as a social being. read again subchapter 5. at the end of a process in which he/she learns to accord private impulse with social expectation.3. It offers more delight in ________________________ action than in character. 122 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . ________________________ 5. It presents a tale of mystery and horror. It centres on intellectual debate and confrontation of ideas. 1. It defines itself in contrast with the “serious” narrative genres. ________________________ 7. Its hero is a marginal figure who aspires to social success. deliberately reducing the importance of plot or emotional conflict. The achievement of maturity leads to the hero’s satisfactory social integration. ________________________ 6. usually with supernatural ingredients. after each sentence. mocking their elevated style by applying it to common. ________________________ 4. Two of these descriptions do not match any of the types of novels described in the subchapter above. • SAQ 2 What kinds of novels do the following sentences describe? Write the answer in the space indicated by the continuous line. ________________________ 8. trivial subjects.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel of education (the Bildungsroman*) is concerned with the formation of character through the accumulation of experience.. in their confrontation with moral choice. ________________________ 2. this illustrates the concern of the Enlightenment with the development of the individual as a social being. 3. It explores the labyrinth of emotion and feeling. It explores the diversity of social manners and their articulation with moral values.1.

published in 1719. their social insertion.2. dynamic and versatile. establishing it as the most popular literary genre in the 18th century. Their novels are the literary reflection of the spirit of individualism that characterised the age. Puritan* background.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.1. Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Defoe’s career as a novelist started with his masterpiece. They differ in the objects of their “realistic” approach: whereas Defoe’s interest is invested in the external world of fact. several adventure novels. on his fiction. and tracing the protagonists’ struggles to achieve material prosperity as a condition of a stable social position. Both Defoe and Richardson display in their narratives a remarkable faithfulness to detail. and both of them focus on the individual in his/her struggle of securing a legitimate position in the social structure. Mariner. to the influence. Richardson focuses on the inner world of thought and feeling. Both of them enjoyed enormous popularity not only in England. 5. cast in a picaresque form. in circumstantial details. but also on the Continent. is invariably accompanied by moral reformation. the power to hold attention and keep curiosity awake. of such non-fictional kinds of writing as the spiritual autobiography or didactic religious treatises. on the individual’s striving towards some form of personal achievement. the constant striving towards accuracy of description. They are pragmatic. They were all stories of success. His heroes are remarkable in their vitality. Features of Defoe’s heroes Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 123 . The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York. Defoe and Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Each of these two novelists had an essential contribution to the rise of the novel. Its tremendous success encouraged Defoe to produce. on the movements of consciousness and the emotional response to moral problems.2. in the next years. This confers vividness to their narratives. in actions. and their adventures show the individual victorious over circumstances and environment (physical or social). They share a middle class. This aspect in Defoe’s novels points to his Puritan background. resourcefulness and capacity for adjustment and survival. Their rise to social respectability and wealth. when the writer was almost sixty.

prudent and calculating mature man. one of Defoe’s “honest cheats.” as he came to call his novels – the attempt to inculcate religion and morality through a gripping story which has the appearance of authenticity. Robinson becomes engaged in a heroic struggle for survival. Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Robinson Crusoe is recommended as “a just history of fact.” without “any appearance of fiction in it. Son of a successful German merchant settled in England. After 26 years. of his moral strength to carry on against all obstacles. where he has established a colony. not only physical but also spiritual. he starts a voyage to Africa. The only survivor. names him Friday and turns him into his loyal servant and receptive pupil. He marries. a celebration of man’s power of spiritual endurance in adversity.” and leaves home on board a ship. Robinson settles in Brazil where he becomes a relatively prosperous plantation owner. In the 28 years of solitary life.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. he learns that his prospering business in Brazil has made him a rich man. he turns from a reckless.2. Robinson displays from a young age the romantic inclination of wandering. such an experience became an archetypal one. The subject is inspired by 17th century stories of castaways on desert islands. After several misadventures at sea. On his return to England. In the hope of increasing his wealth. but during a terrible storm he is shipwrecked on a desert island. Wyeth . Under Defoe’s pen. Providence helps him finally leave the island.2. in fact. romantic youth into a realistic. Illustration to the first edition (1719) Robinson on the beach (illustration by N. to buy slaves.” It is. C.” He disregards his father’s advice of continuing the family trade and keeping within the limits of his “middle station in life. and the book ends with his promise of further accounts of his island. as well by the more recent case of a sailor who had lived in complete solitude for five years on an uninhabited island. the desire for adventure and for “seeing the world. he rescues a savage from his fellow cannibals. struggling to impose on an alien space his middle class idea of order. in soon left a widower. has three children.1920) 124 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .

and finally to his conviction of God’s benevolent design. as an allegory of the ecological development of history.” 5. the motif of the island acquires symbolic Robinson’s island dimensions.. It corresponds to the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 125 . as a political or economic utopia. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. to the awakening of religious conscience. tracing Robinson’s progress from sin (his disobedience of his father). as one of the great myths of individualism of Western civilisation. the awareness of his sinfulness and the sincere desire for repentance. Robinson perceives his exile from the world as a terrible punishment for his transgression of his father’s word.1. Isolation is no longer a misfortune.2. and 5. Interpretations of Robinson Crusoe Defoe’s novel lends itself to a variety of interpretations: as an allegory of man’s evolution from the state of nature to civilisation and its institutions. embodying elements of contemporary social philosophy and economic theory. Robinson comes to see his solitude rather as a spiritual and moral shelter.2. In his initial struggle with despair. It may also be read as a spiritual autobiography in the Puritan tradition. as his life becomes more secure and his trust in Providence increases. making sure you understand the meaning of the phrase “honest cheat. Gradually.3. read again subchapters 5. If it should differ considerably. but the proper condition for the examination of consciousness.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 3 How does the description “honest cheat” apply to Robinson Crusoe? Answer in no more than 8 lines / 80 words.2.2. In this light.

2. Enumerate. and is thus a way of restoring a lost Paradise. 4.” Robinson perceives the island as the equivalent of a regained Paradise. which will serve his instinct for independence. 126 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 1.g. perseverance. at the end of the unit. or the felix culpa*. as well as the fragment in the Reader. Robinson is cast out from the “edenic” safety and happiness of his father’s home into an uncertain world of toil. food and the basic commodities of life turns into a source of satisfaction. You may render these features either by a single noun (e.2. you must read again the last two paragraphs of subchapter 5. perspicacity. inventiveness.3. The enormous effort by which he secures shelter. Defoe’s novel is thus a celebration of the dignity of work. and it is also symbolic of the Puritan sense of an intense personal relationship with God.. SAQ 4 Read Text 5. as a self-reliant individual. if the biblical curse of work is meant to remind Adam permanently of his original disobedience. If you should fail to find any of the features mentioned there.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The celebration of homo faber characteristic Puritan tendency to self-scrutiny and introspection. or by a sentence (e. Changed in his “notion of things. where his daily bread is earned with “infinite labour. morally autonomous. In this connection.” However. It has its spiritual rewards. 3. Like Adam. with a well-defined utilitarian view of life. 2. Robinson Crusoe also celebrates those human features which enable man to master circumstances: pragmatism. the protagonist’s experience evokes the theme of the fortunate fall. describing in minute detail Robinson’s attempt to make an earthenware pot. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Robinson finds in it a “therapeutic” value. subchapter 5. He takes pleasure in his work)..” desires and “delights. its essential role in man’s material and spiritual progress. ingenuity).2.. Crusoe’s years of solitude trained him for social insertion. at least four features of the hero’s character as they are illustrated by this description. in the space below. g.

2. clear language. arising from the complication of a plot centering not on episodic adventure. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. It was with Richardson that “the sense of life” conveyed by the narrative was completed by a sense of form. whose reality is difficult to doubt. read the fragment and subchapter 5. Defoe’s style The world of Defoe’s novels is the world of common fact and action. The richness of concrete detail. he paid little attention to matters of form. His simple. the most common objects and actions in their particularity. on a separate sheet. easy and eminently factual style made his writings accessible to a large audience.4 once more and do the exercise again. the frequent enumerations and inventories. His fiction has the remarkable power to evoke a tangible reality. concreteness. If your list contains none of the features mentioned there. of familiar detail.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. 4.4. rendered in a simple. containing. in turn benefited from his innate gift for telling stories. the promise of symbolic meanings. with unmatched vividness. 127 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . solid world. The “journalistic” style of Defoe’s fiction is consonant with an ideal of prose style characterised by plainness. His linear. In his aspiration to create an effect of reality in his narrative. lack of unnecessary ornamentation. He convinced readers of the truthfulness of his narrative by evoking. 3. the accumulation of circumstantial detail create a strong sense of a palpable. which draws much of its force from Defoe’s peculiar narrative manner and style. but on the complexity of character and human relationship. 2. Identify in it at least four features of Defoe’s characteristic narrative style and write them in the space provided below. Defoe’s novels imposed a model of style that contributed considerably to the “democratisation” of literature. Robinson Crusoe is a gripping narrative. The latter owes greatly to Defoe’s experience as a journalist.2. which. Defoe is the first major fiction writer whose narrative realism conveyed such a powerful impression of authenticity and completeness in the representation of the interaction of the individual with the environment. episodic plots imitate the episodic quality of life itself. in the Reader from the point of view of its style. at the end of the unit. SAQ 5 Analyse Text 5. at the same time. clarity. 1.2.

unanimously loved and admired. As the first great sentimental novelist. or Virtue Rewarded (1740) and Clarissa. or Virtue Rewarded Pamela is a simple countryside girl who works as a maidservant in the house of Lady B_. Richardson’s prominent place in the history of the English novel is ensured by two novels: Pamela. the death of the heroine turns her into a tragic figure. Her diary – intended for her parents – falls into Mr.5. Pamela decides to thank Providence by doing as much good as she can to those around her. Mr. recording the details of her ordeal. Faced with her resistance. There. Upon the death of her mistress. not only in England but also on the Continent. the tone is rather that of a comedy of manners and the ending is in the spirit of the Cinderella* tale. He acknowledges his love and proposes marriage to her. Pamela has one more test to pass: winning the approval of Mr. hoping that she will give in. His influence was considerable. as well as for his didactic purpose. In Pamela. Both novels concentrate on the microcosm of the family and develop the themes of the trial of innocence. Her disarming combination of graceful modesty and pride helps her come victorious in an encounter with haughty Lady Davers. cruel and greedy relatives. Pamela continues a diary. At the same time. impressed by Pamela’s unusual beauty and grace. In her new state.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. in Bedfordshire. 128 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Samuel Richardson (1689-1761) 5. or the History of a Young Lady (1748). Back to Bedfordshire as mistress of the house. B_ abducts her and keeps her a prisoner for a while in his Lincolnshire house. Mr. sensibility and morality.2. of individual freedom threatened by arbitrary power. whose affection she finally gains. B_’s hands. Richardson’s contribution to the development of the novel Richardson is the first to combine a sense of social reality with the interest in individual psychology. but also the agitation of her heart and its conflicting impulses. Pamela differs from Clarissa in tone and ending. B_’s sister. which Richardson found best suited for the realistic rendering of psychological and moral complexity. In Clarissa. who is now convinced of the purity of her motives and of her innocence. of the struggle between virtue and vice.2. B’s relatives and friends. B_. The plot of Pamela. Mr. Both are written in the epistolary manner*. his exploration of unconscious motivation makes him a forerunner in the great tradition of the novel of psychological analysis. His focus on the inner life of feeling and emotion prefigures the Romantic* sensibility. the double victim of the libertine aristocrat who raped her and of her narrow-minded. tries to seduce her and make her his mistress. Richardson focuses on the relation between feeling and virtue.6. the latter’s son.

as a traditionally dominant class. that no one has the right to control the ideas and feelings of another. a complete novelty in fiction. the freedoms that he takes with her. Richardson’s implicit radical message. He thus questions the exclusive right of aristocracy. Richardson’s novel participates in the larger illuminist debate on the issue of authority and absolute power vs. to set moral standards to the nation. Pamela’s position of moral superiority reflects Richardson’s confidence that the values of the middle class entitled them to claim moral leadership. Pamela is brought up by her modest parents in the spirit of the strictest religious principles. is consistent with the spirit of individual freedom which defines the Enlightenment. F. Social hierarchy and the individual self Pamela’s problem is not only the defense of her chastity. Through its subject and theme. The moral conflict in the novel is accompanied by social issues. the rights of the individual. B_ intercepting Pamela’s first letter to her parents (Engraving by H. Gravelot to the 1742 edition) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 129 . She perceives her imprisonment by Mr.7. as he embodies perfect virtue in a lower middle-class girl.2. his violation of her privacy (including the private space of her correspondence) as abusive attempts to reduce her to the condition of an object. B_. The cover engraving and title page of the 1741 edition Mr. She sees social hierarchy as “natural.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. but the education she received in Lady B_’s house is far above that of a servant. This ambiguity in her condition makes her remarkably class-conscious. Richardson’s creation of Pamela is revolutionary.” but she defends her dignity as an individual.

5.2. Psychological realism and the epistolary technique What makes Richardson a real innovator is the credibility with which he renders the heroine’s inner conflicts. B_ When the latter acts openly as her oppressor. but his moments of kindness confuse her and make her feel vulnerable. Her initial innocent regard for her master’s benevolence turns gradually into the apprehension of danger. and 5. Richardson’s mastery consists in the subtlety with which he suggests the gradual surfacing of unconscious feeling and with which he traces the heroine’s slow process of self-knowledge. what are the implications of her exclamation: “My soul is of equal importance with the soul of a princess. If there should be significant differences.e. Pamela struggles from the start between fright and fascination. read again attentively subchapters 5. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. it is easier for her to stand his abuses.2.8. social standing] I am but upon a foot with the meanest slave. at the end of the unit. though in quality [i. her contradictory impulses and unconscious motivations. but her letters betray her growing affection for her master. Her conscience is divided between her loyalty to the moral principles inculcated by her parents and her social duty. to obey Mr.6.2. as a servant. 130 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 6 Considering the heroine’s dilemma in the novel.7. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. between hate and admiration.”? Answer in the space left below.

The spectacular change in him is his overcoming of class prejudice under the influence of feeling..2. and his developing love. He found the epistolary narrative to be best suited for his sentimental focus. find two main advantages of the epistolary technique. and considering also Text 5. and that human actions may have their true motivation hidden from consciousness. What counts. The exploration of the complexities of emotional response to pressing moral issues defines Richardson as a sentimental novelist. In Pamela’s letters and diary. Your answers should not exceed 4 lines / 40 words each. B_ follows a similar evolution.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The character of Mr. What Richardson manages to convey most convincingly is the psychological truth that feeling and emotion may sometimes run counter to our rational will. at the end of the unit. in the Reader).3. 2. events are recorded with the same care for detail as in Defoe’s narratives. as well as the indicated fragments in the Reader. 1. Compare your answers with the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 7 Starting from Richardson’s own description of his epistolary manner (Text 5. There is a struggle in him between the “pride of birth” and “pride of fortune”. read again subchapter 5. which are captured in the process of their emergence. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 131 . She has a remarkable gift for rendering an incident vividly or delineating another character. If they should correspond to none of the offered suggestions. He proves as unaware of his feelings as Pamela is.4. however. excerpted from Pamela. her sentimental response to them.9. on the one hand. The use of the epistolary technique afforded direct access to the character’s thoughts and feelings. on the other.. is the impact of these incidents and encounters on her mind and heart.

whose servant he was. He is the object of seduction of “Lady Booby*. Lady Booby’s estate in Somersetshire is the scene for the novel’s last series of adventures. Abraham Adams. Booby. but a voice external to the story. Mr. Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Fielding is the creator of the novels of manners. Fielding was a master of parody. and he thought to propose his own version of morality. which is doubled by the fact that Joseph is pursued not only by the mistress. Fielding uses the technique of reversal as a parodic device. A somber discovery marks the climax of confusion: it appears that Joseph and Fanny are brother and sister. so that he sets out for home. emulating his sister in the exemplarity of his virtue. Joseph Andrews is presented as Pamela’s brother. Fielding abandons parody. in London. Mr. All important characters meet here. the author asserts himself. Mrs. The multitude of incidents during their journey acquaints the reader with the most diverse aspects of English countryside life and with an impressive variety of human types. as well as their inclusiveness. His acknowledged literary models were Swift. required a narrator who should be no longer a character.3. who opposes her brother’s marriage to a simple country-girl.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. performed by means of comic satiric devices. The careful narrative architecture of his novels.1. “written in imitation of the manner of Cervantes*. modest and gentle creature. Cervantes.” Mr. including Pamela and her husband. Treating seriously of male virtue results in comic effect. started as a parody.3. His works are panoramic reflections of the age. B_’s aunt. Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and of His Friend. author of Don Quixote” (1742). to his native village. controlling the narrative and imposing his own values explicitly. burlesque and comic satire. He is also the first novelist who displayed a remarkable sense of form. The result was the first comic novel of manners in England. The hero’s companions are Parson Abraham Adams and Fanny Goodwill. Pope. Omniscient narration afforded a comic vision of life. Henry Fielding (1707-1754) 5. above all. relationships and actions. irony. Parodic accents are revived: Pamela is not Richardson’s humble. Slipslop. Joseph’s sweetheart. but a snobbish. His rejection of both leads to his dismissal. Fielding’s combination of realism and comedy inaugurated a lasting tradition of realistic fiction as an instrument of criticism of manners. 1790) 132 . Through the omniscient* narrator. and the first comprehensive literary picture of the manners and mentalities of the age. they mirror a wide range of human types. Fielding considered the Puritan morality preached by Rhichardson’s Pamela as narrow and ungenerous. At this point. priggish* upstart. and. and the long central section of the novel – its picaresque part – describes Joseph’s adventures on the road. but also by the maid. More unexpected Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Lady Booby and Joseph Andrews (engraving by James Heath.

T F Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. T F 3. Affectation arising from hypocrisy is more efficiently comic. The action of a comic romance is more extended and comprehensive than that of a comedy. 5. T F 8. The comic writer gives pleasure by strictly imitating nature. is an ingredient of romantic plots.” Fielding himself speaks of his work as a comic romance. Fielding likes to play with genres. at the end of the unit. SAQ 8 In the Preface to Joseph Andrews. Read Text 5. very carefully and identify which of the statements below are true and which are false. Circle the appropriate letter (T or F.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel disclosures bring about the final clarification and the great reversal of the plot: Joseph turns out to be the son of a gentleman. T F 5. which closes the plot. but rooting his action in contemporaneity and the ordinary. T F 6. Fielding resorts to the burlesque both in the creation of his characters and in diction. Both comedy and comic romance introduce characters of low social rank and inferior manners. Fielding exploits such motifs in a comic or burlesque key. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 133 . Fielding gives his definition of a comic romance and discusses the nature and the source of the comic (“the Ridiculous”).3. Affectation arising from vanity presupposes the concealment of vice under an appearance of virtue. This removes all obstacles in the way of Joseph and Fanny’s marriage. 1. Wilson. carefully. in the spirit of comedy. Mr. the spectacular reversal of Joseph’s status. T F 2. which turns out to be gentle*. For instance. to be both serious and ironic about their conventions. read the text once more.2. The burlesque in writing and the caricatura in painting presuppose distortion and exaggeration. indeed “in imitation of the manner of Cervantes. for true or false) for each of them. Cervantes. Natural imperfections are a source of the Ridiculous for the comic writer. The novel as comic romance Like his invoked literary master. while Fanny and Pamela are revealed to be sisters.5. T F 7. like the motif of love fulfilled against all obstacles. or the pattern of the adventurous journey. whom they had met during their journey. T F 4. alluding thus to the older genre. If you should fail to identify the sentences correctly as true or false.

Defoe and Richardson were also concerned with the relation individual-society. Adams’s unsuspecting nature often gets him in trouble. his virtues always outshine his occasional foolishness. in Fielding. but they placed their main interest in the individual. The presence of Parson Adams is essential for the evolution of the main character. etc. Fielding resorts to the principle of contrast in characterisation.3. His fund of Christian idealism is inexhaustible. Like his literary ancestor. often making him appear ridiculous. one of the most successfully accomplished quixotic* characters.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. profession and temperament is represented in his novels. which often create comic effects. above all. fulfilling thus the novel’s double aim of entertaining and instructing. quickly assimilating his mentor’s lesson and convinced that true Christianity means. in spite of the many instances of greed. The character of Parson Adams The influence of Cervantes is clear in Fielding’s delineation of Parson* Adams. By means of techniques of contrast. hypocrisy and intolerance he is confronted with. both honest and hypocrite priests. doctors. Joseph emerges as morally mature. For the author. In the combination of foolishness and idealism that characterises the parson. in various nuances of behaviour and in its moral diversity. At the same time. which must give substance to faith. not an individual. he describes “not men. Along the novel. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Character as type The principle of contrast in characterisation 134 .4. but good deeds and charity. Fielding’s panoramic approach led him to find uniform patterns in human behaviour. Parson Adams as a quixotic character 5. Fielding makes a synthesis between the comic and the morally serious. Fielding offers aesthetic delight. but manners. cruelty. and he never seems to learn from disappointing experiences. In order to make the extraordinary variety of human types easier to deal with.3. Parson Adams’s character remains the moral center of the novel. Virtue and vice are not the “privilege” of a certain class or profession. active goodness. as he himself says. the parson combines innocence and simplicity with dignity and learning. there are both good and bad innkeepers. Fielding involves him in a multitude of comic situations. He represents what Fielding considers the highest Christian value: goodness. because “beauty and excellence” are always best demonstrated by their reverse. Joseph appears to follow his sister in his restriction of virtue to the question of chastity. In other words. and the reader is invited to judge all the other characters against the moral standard that he embodies. both loyal and treacherous servants or friends. the essence of Christian morality is not prudence. but a species” (Joseph Andrews). Fielding’s conception of character in Joseph Andrews The way in which Fielding conceives his characters in his novels is of great importance for his didactic purpose. etc. Fielding’s fiction displays an immense gallery of characters. In the beginning.3. lawyers. Every social class. masters. but also moral instruction. as for Richardson.

.. of evoking his characters’ social position and moral nature through their language. and he tried to give full legitimacy to the novel. He is a moralist. like many Augustan writers. in the superior corrective efficiency of comedy and its devices.3.2. 5.4. preoccupied with the reformation of manners. If they should differ substantially. defining it in relation with the respectable genres of the epic and drama. At the same time. at the end of the unit.. incorporated in the substance of his works. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 135 . and he believes. 2. 5.4. read again subchapters 5.3.3. 1.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. He had a solid classical education and a strong sense of literary tradition.8. provide the first theory of the novel. Fielding’s Augustanism* Of all 18th century novelists. 5. of no more than 3 lines / 30 words each. unaffected. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. he had the exceptional gift of individualizing his characters through speech. 3. drawing short comparisons. Such reflections show his Neoclassic emphasis on discipline and craftsmanship as essential for successful creation. Explain them. His narrative style is eminently Augustan: articulate and refined. His commentaries and reflections on his own art.2. reveals his Augustan view of the writer’s province. and 5. SAQ 9 Mention at least three features of Fielding’s art of the novel which distinguish him from Defoe and Richardson.5.. Fielding is the most “Augustan. combining elegant seriousness with wit and irony. through its moral and temperamental types.” His exploration of the diversity of Human Nature.2.

in Joseph Andrews. Walter Shandy. that his brother Bobby died suddenly. the narrator. This makes his novel a work of metafiction*. Tristram suffered a new misfortune: an accidental “circumcision. These few tragi-comic episodes from Tristram’s early life make him a “small HERO. of his uncle.e. and his long. Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel The title of the novel raises in the reader the expectation of an autobiographical narrative.” when a window sash fell over him owing to the maid’s carelessness. the testing of the possibilities and limits of fiction took the novel into a radical direction. other interesting things to relate. does not manage to give a shape to his story.2. moulds reality into a literary pattern. that he was. corporal Trim. Toby and the latter’s devoted servant. His father. that. instead of a linear narration of a life's story and the rational coherence of an autobiographical retrospective account. the priest who baptised Tristram. 136 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His Tristram Shandy has been seen as an anti-novel. at the age of five. Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Sterne’s only novel was published in instalments: its nine volumes appeared between 1760 and 1768. is an erudite philosopher.4.” individuals dominated by some private obsession.4. that his father decided to write a “system of education” (Tristrapaedia). Tristram. at every point. we are drawn into an extremely irregular. he seems to have.4. which progressed at a slower pace than the growth of his son. which isolates each of them in his mental universe. In spite of his promises. Fielding had demonstrated. pedantic discourses are completely incomprehensible to those around him. Much more of the narrative is dedicated to the unforgettable figures of his father. The ultimate question that Sterne raises in his novel is the nature of fictional representation.” in every sense. unpredictable narrative. by accident. He tells us about his birth only in Volume III. Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Tristram’s family is a collection of “originals. Walter. as well as of Parson Yorick. the history of a private life. Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) 5. He digresses continually.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. a sceptical examination of the conventions of realistic fiction. who has read “the oddest books in the universe” and consequently has “the oddest way of thinking. We learn few things about his life: that his nose was crushed at birth by the doctor’s forceps. that parody was a factor of innovation in the development of the novel as a literary genre. With Sterne. christened Tristram (a name which evokes the French word “triste”) instead of Trismegistus* as his father had intended. However. i. of those procedures by which an author “transcribes“ life.” He is fond of building strange theories and hypotheses about the smallest things.1. the relation between life and literature. 5.

However.3. Shandean* book” that Tristram is trying to write is meant to do good to the reader’s both heart and head. but the uniqueness of each individual mind. There are many eccentric characters in 18th century fiction. but in Sterne’s novel all characters are eccentrics.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Among his most eccentric theories. and it is either dealt with sentimentally or revealed in its comic absurdity. the early accidents in his son’s life cause him great distress.” forgetting (1760) everything in pursuit of his obsession. gathering “almost as many books on military frontispiece to vol. amiability. The “nonsensical. therefore. On the other hand. Wounded in Flanders. “My uncle Toby” is the most memorable character in the book. and discharged from the army. Its approach to the frustrations of life is called by Tristram “true Shandeism. They cannot share their thoughts. representing there the main battles as they William Hogarth. 5. His narrative emphasises a tragi-comic vision of life. He becomes completely Tristram Shandy. modesty and. which were expected to influence a man’s conduct. Understandably. pitiful creature. but they can enter a dialogue of the hearts. to preserve good humour in the middle of trouble. ironic terms. doomed to pass from sorrow to sorrow.4.” Toby Shandy is Sterne’s best accomplished sentimental character – the narrator continually praises his uncle’s good nature. Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The characters’ obsessions and idiosyncrasies are an intellectual barrier in their communication.” defined as the capacity to mock at the blows of fate. moral or psychological) that interests Sterne. to 137 The Shandean view of life Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Tristram Shandy displays a unique combination of sentimentalism and comedy. which becomes almost a parody of human individuality. The narrator sees laughter as the ultimate defense of the sensitive soul against life’s miseries and limitations. It is not type (social. Characterisation by hobby-horse is a negation of conventional means of realistic character delineation. He transforms his bowling green into a miniature military field. Sterne places emphasis on the sentimental nature of his heroes as an aspect of their “moral character. Tristram calls such obsessions hobby-horses. generosity. and this is made obvious in their endless conversations recorded in the novel. good-humoured. gentleness. there are his “system of noses” – his conviction that the quality of a person’s nose determines his character – and the hypothesis concerning Christian names. the members of the Shandy family reach mutual understanding on the affective level.1 architecture as Don Quixote was found to have of chivalry. during the War of the Spanish Succession*. a quixotic figure forming an eccentric couple with corporal Trim. character and destiny. where compassion and empathy bridge the gap created by their singularity. with man as a vulnerable. uniqueness is achieved in extreme. uncle Toby continues to live the reality of war through a substitute. Suffering is a permanence in Tristram’s world. absorbed in this activity. above all. as comic eccentricity. were being fought on the continent. which influences all his thoughts and actions.

SAQ 10 In Vol. read again subchapter 5.3. see again the fall of princes. which enables man to keep a healthy spirit and to get around the evils of life by joking about them. Read this short chapter (Text 5. 138 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . V. To remember the features of the tragic hero. If the difference is considerable.4. Sterne introduces the theme of Fortune – a theme which he will develop with a characteristic mixture of sentimental pathos and comic wit. Ch.6. as well as the fragment from the Reader.. in the Reader) attentively and explain why Tristram’s selfdescription as a “small HERO” suggests a tragi-comic vision of life. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. I. It is a combination of wisdom and mirth*. Write the answer in the space left below. restricting it to 12 lines / 120 words.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel take a lightly ironic distance from suffering. at the end of the unit. in the Glossary to Unit 2.

by drawing his attention not only to what is told. 5. He delights in minute descriptions of postures and small gestures.4.5.” The confused chronology and the digressive excesses frustrate also our expectation of a plot. and to involve the reader both imaginatively and sentimentally. i. marking a moment of affectionate recollection. the book is a comic oddity. but also as an author. The “Shandean” view of writing This ambivalent view of life corresponds. He thus exaggerates parodically the realistic pursuit of accuracy and immediacy. but also to how it is told. Tristram resorts to other means of communication. The narrator explicitly refuses to keep the story straight. its unpredictable returns to various moments in the past. drawings and graphs. Tristram has the consciousness of his tragi-comic predicament. It is. The zigzagging narrative. so different from Fielding’s tight. For example. there are numberless digressions and interpolated stories. there are several dedications scattered through the book. points of suspension. The same “Shandean” view applies to writing: Tristram counteracts the frustrations of the author who aims at perfect communication by putting on the mask of the literary jester* and mocking at the conventions of the genre. with its blank pages for the reader to fill in. Tristram constantly oscillates between the comic despair at his incapacity to master his narrative and the delight he takes in complete narrative freedom. the restriction of the hero’s “life” to a few episodes breaks the convention of autobiographical focus. Digressive narrative Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 139 . Sterne defamiliarises them.e. does not seem to move towards any climax. Tristram is earnestly trying to tell the story of his life and his opinions as accurately as possible. only in the middle of Volume III that we find the author’s Preface. The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions By taking extreme freedoms with narrative and compositional conventions. makes the reader aware of them. by exploiting them in a parodic way. Faced with the problems of accurate representation through words. Typographically.” Not only as a man. and he takes great delight in digressions.4. The difficulty he experiences as a writer is due to the limits of language. the “imperfections of words. even a black sheet introduced at the death of Yorick. watched as if by a slow motion camera. This impression is increased by Tristram’s effort to be exhaustive in his presentation. which he calls “the sunshine of reading.4. frustrates our expectation of chronological linearity commonly associated with an autobiographical account.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. asterisks. for instance. in Sterne’s novel. with its multitude of dashes. etc. and gives the impression of stagnation. Sterne’s rambling narrative. coherent plots. to a certain view of writing. The structure of the book is equally odd.

as it explores – halfseriously. halfsceptical meditation on the condition of literature and its relation with reality. makes Tristram Shandy a work of metafiction. Basically. The main subject of Sterne’s novel is. In volume VI. There are themes in Sterne’s Metafictional novel which may be called “metafictional”. making the reader aware that “literary time” is arbitrary and conventional. also concerned with the way in which consciousness refracts external reality. half-comically – the distinction between subjective and objective time.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Tristram constantly draws attention to the way in which he manipulates fictional time. Another prominent theme with a metafictional relevance is that The theme of time of time and its relation with the imagination. i. The meaning of metafiction depends. of life as pure chance. Tristram draws the narrative “lines. the narrated time and the time of reading.6. The randomness of the narrative is a mirror of the narrator’s sense of his own life as tragi-comically governed by accident.4. into the “laboratory” of his literary consciousness.e. Its extravagant. random course of the narrative has a correspondent in the theme of Fortune. It is a half-amused. Tristram Shandy questions the mimetic illusion that realistic fiction endeavours to create. metafiction is fiction about fiction. formless reality. i. 140 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Metafictionally. works which call attention to their own devices. The unpredictable. One such theme in Tristram Shandy is that of human communication – or rather incommunication –. the permanent inquiry into what a novel can do and cannot do. with the narrator’s desperate effort to be allinclusive and his incapacity of managing his narrative. experimental character affords the reader a glimpse into the novelist’s dilemmas and arsenal of choices. ultimately. the theme of time corresponds to the narrator’s concern with the distinction between the time of writing. which is connected. Tristram Shandy as metafiction The constant reference to the devices and conventions operating in fiction.” with their digressions. Sterne’s literary treatment of the notion of duration makes him a precursor of 20th century modernist writers like James Joyce and Virginia Woolf. As metafiction. Tristram Shandy may be called the first philosophical novel in English.e. however. in the first four volumes. the process of its own writing. they may be related to themes the problem of fictional representation and its limits. Sterne’s particular approach to narrative correponds to a certain vision of human experience. on the author’s vision of life. at the structural level. on the possibilities of fiction to render in an intelligible pattern the elusive.

The fragment is practically about the writing of the novel. If they differ significantly.4.5.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 11 Text 5. the narrator stops and considers his eccentric way of telling it. Instead of continuing the story. Read the text and find three reasons for Tristram’s praise of digressions. in the Reader illustrates the metafictional dimension of Sterne’s novel. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Henry William Bunbury: Uncle Toby and Trim reviving a scene of war on the bowling green (1773) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 141 . 2.. the author reveals to the reader one aspect of his conception of writing. and 5. and read the fragment attentively once more. In this way.6. at the end of the unit. 3.4. 1.7. go again through subchapters 5. using no more than 3 lines / 30 words for each of them. which he discusses in the very text of the work. Write them in the spaces indicated below.

self-conscious novel that makes him highly modern.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Summary The birth of the novel is a literary phenomenon that must be seen as part of the process of modernisation defining the Age of the Enlightenment in England. You have formed an idea of this diversity from the chapters of this unit. We have only concentrated on one novel for each writer. Lastly. in his novels of manners. and Laurence Sterne. Key words • • • • • • • • • • • realism romance character to divert and instruct parody comic novel of manners sentimental novel narrative technique metafiction convention 142 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Since its settlement on the literary scene. readers along the ages have been able to find a wealth of symbolic meanings and a story of archetypal significance. Fielding. but his interest in the psychological complexity of the individual is completed by a remarkable sensitivity to social aspects. on the other hand. Defoe illustrates best the new narrative realism that emerged in fiction. This is reflected in the wide diversity of directions in which the novel developed in the 18th century. The absence of norms and models made it an exceptionally flexible and inclusive form. the novel was a minor form. Their works illustrate various aspects and tendencies in the evolution of the genre. who shares with Fielding the attraction to comedy and parody. Sterne. tests the possibilities and limitations of the newly-born literary genre in an experimental. looks for the permanences in human nature and investigates the border area in which the individual’s aspirations and pursuits are submitted to the pressure of social demand. to the palpable reality of common objects and actions. which has dealt with four major novelists of this age: Daniel Defoe. At the beginning of the 18th century. in a work so committed to the matterof-fact. Samuel Richardson. Henry Fielding. selected as an illustration of the most characteristic features of his art. Richardson takes the novel in the direction of the minute analysis of emotion and feeling. However. and with Robinson Crusoe the middle class hero is imposed on the literary scene. completely ignored by Augustan poetics. this genre has enjoyed unrivalled popularity.

literally: novel of formation. jester: a professional clown employed by a king or nobleman. epistolary manner: in a novel. mimetic: the adjective derived from mimesis (Greek: imitation). minuteness: exactness in the rendering of small detail. “beyond fiction”. belonging to a high social class (as in gentleman). Cinderella: an old fairy story. Concretely.3 and the Glossary in Unit 3. Bildungsroman: German term. in which the poor heroine. fixed idea. parson: an Anglican priest in charge of a local church. harpsichord: an old musical instrument. The letter (epistle) as a literary species was widely used in the 18th century. whose style. attitude and subject are deliberately distorted so as to make them appear ridiculous. lifelikeness: closeness to life. fun. gaiety. rogue) – belongs. hobby horse: a favourite topic or an obsessive. a term associated with the aesthetic view according to which the work of art is an imitation – a representation – of reality. exact representation of life.e. but producing a different sound. or “narcissistic” – i. The hero – the picaro (i. literacy: the ability to read and write. omniscient: describes the perspective of a narrator who appears to know all about the characters and their action. consisting of a stick with a figure of a horse’s head at one end.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Glossary • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • Augustanism: the features of style and the aesthetic views of a writer belonging to the Augustan Age (for the latter. mirth: laughter. ends up by marrying Prince Charming. happiness. played like a piano. felix culpa: see subchapter 3. persecuted by her stepmother and ugly stepsisters. It was Aristotle who articulated this theory. which became popular in England through translation and imitation. a hobbyhorse is a toy. metafiction: literally. He is forced to 143 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Cinderella is the prototype of the obscure and neglected young person. parody: the satirical imitation of a serious work. which dominated Western aesthetics until the end of the 18th century. a Fool. booby: silly or stupid person. characteristically. the way of telling the story through a character’s letters or through an exchange of letters. picaresque: the origin of English picaresque novels is in the Spanish picaresque fiction of the 16th century. gentle: of good breeding. or education. in which its form becomes explicitly its subject. to the lower ranks of society. a term designating the contemporary mode of fiction – postmodern fiction – which is essentially self-reflexive. see again the Glossary in Unit 1). and he seeks social integration.e. who achieves success owing to beauty and virtue. tone.

Gallery of personalities • Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra): Spanish writer (1547-1616). Britain joined Austria. priggish: describes a person who is strict about rules and correct behaviour and thinks him/herself morally superior to others. the famous satirical romance in which the hero’s sense of reality is altered by his obsession with the romantic chivalric ideal. Stimulated by the numberless stories of romantic heroism that he has read. War of the Spanish Succession: 1702-1713. • 144 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . author of Don Quixote de la Mancha (1605. on a quest that is both admirable and ridiculous.e. honest and brave hidalgo (i. 1615). squire) appear as madness in a world whose reality is obscured to him by the idealism of the old romances. Don Quixote is an implicit debate on the relation between fiction and reality. Prussia and the Netherlands against France. Don Quixote starts. “quixotic” indicates an unrealistically optimistic and impractically idealistic approach to life. Puritan: see the Glossary in Unit 1.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel • • • • • • find his way in a hostile world by means of his resourcefulness and ingenuity. which stands in an ironic contrast with the successive triumphs of the noble hero of romance). The high aspirations of this generous. quixotic: the word describes a character moulded after Cervantes’s Don Quixote. Shandean: the adjective that Tristram derives from his family name. like a knight-errant of former times. Spain and Bavaria in this war fought over the disputed succession to the Spanish throne. Romantic: see Romanticism in the Glossary in Unit 1. having often to go through the experience of humiliation and frustration. Trismegistus: Hermes Trismegistos (thrice-greatest) is the Greek name given to the Egyptian god Thoth as supposed author of various works of mysticism and magic.

in the Reader presents an incident at the court of Brobdingnag. Limit your answer to 35 lines/350 words.4. The novel as a literary genre both reflects and helps consolidate values and attitudes which define the Age of the Enlightenment. 1. You might find it helpful to revise subchapters 5. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. Horrified. in grading your paper. In order to win the good graces of the king. in the context of the novel’s pattern of Puritan autobiography? Your answer should be no longer than 10 lines /100 words.1.. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 30%. Text 5. Gulliver offers him the secret of the recipe for gunpowder. Text 4. You will have. Remember that. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 145 . revealing candidly to him the “benefits” of this invention. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). and 5. 3.1. and Gulliver’s new humiliation will make him partial in the subsequent description of the king’s rule. in the Reader represents a fragment from Robinson Crusoe in which the motif of the island is particularly prominent. 2. with special attention to subchapter 4.1. clarity. to revise the preceding unit. who had just pronounced a severe judgement on his civilisation. • the features that make the kingdom of Brobdingnag a utopia of reasonable government. You may refer both to the general circumstances of the novel’s emergence and its concerns. the king rejects this tribute. which presents Swift as a master of allegorical satire. Limit your answer to 25 lines / 250 words. • the coherence. 2 will count as 20% in your final assessment. SAA no. in Book II of Gulliver’s Travels.. therefore. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 20%. and to the illustration of those values and attitudes in a particular novel. and its contrast with European civilisation as Gulliver presents it. What is the double symbolic significance of Robinson’s island. 2 This assignment includes tasks concerning both Unit 4 and Unit 5.2. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. as well as the presentation of the novel you choose to discuss. Read the fragment carefully and analyse: • the ironic-satirical treatment of Gulliver himself.4. Mention at least four aspects in support of this idea.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Send-away assignment no. as illustrated by this fragment.

SAQ 2 1. 3. but she denies any human being the right to control her moral 146 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural the novel of adventure the sentimental novel the picaresque novel the Bildungsroman the novel of manners the comic novel . 4. 5. which is given an air of authenticity by the meticulous. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. 2. resilience. realistic account. He delights the reader with an extraordinary adventure and a story of success. She will accept humbly her social inferiority. but this is a way of accomplishing more efficiently his honest intention of conveying a moral message. SAQ 3 Defoe’s own phrase refers to the purpose of his novels: to entertain and to instruct. she may be deprived of the privilege of class and fortune. pragmatism. He thus “cheats” the reader with the illusion of truth. 6. 3. plainness. vividness. and by the form of autobiographical record. concreteness. … novels focused on the ordinary and the familiar aspects of life. rationality. In the social order. 4. patience. optimism. The rise of the middle classes … coincides with the emergence of the novel as a literary genre. industriousness.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. SAQ 4 Tenacity. SAQ 5 factuality. on contemporary social reality and on the experience of the common individual. 5. immediacy. but she lives with the deep conviction that in the spiritual order of a Christian world. 2. all souls are equal. inventiveness. minuteness SAQ 6 Pamela’s assertion points to her conviction that the right to defend the moral integrity of one’s self is independent of social status. and also authors of novels. the capacity for learning from mistakes. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … offering the middle class readers models of moral and ethical conduct and of social success. Women were … a consistent part of the novel’s reading public. The novel’s interest in the tensions between the public and the private reflected … the attempt to reconcile the growing spirit of individualism with the aspiration to social harmony. sharp sense of observation.

who write in the first person. 5. but in the way in which the individual embodies general traits of human nature. SAQ 7 1. 3. The reader is made witness to the most private thoughts of the character. 4. This is not Tristram’s case.T.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel will.T.T. as well as a paradoxical combination of social conformity and rebelliousness. 3F. he is concerned with human types.F SAQ 9 1.T. 2. which makes her sensitive to any form of power abuse.e unfavourable] accidents” is in comic contrast with the ideas of tragic disaster and the fall of the great. Fielding displays the elegance and refinement of the Augustan ideal of style. SAQ 10 In formulating your answer. 3. It prevents the writing from ending – it allows the writer to go on indefinitely. it enables the author to give greater psychological complexity to the characters. SAQ 8 1. 7. 6. you should think first of the features of a tragic hero. SAQ 11 1. The use of digressions is meant to show Tristram’s narrative skill and constitutes a mark of his originality. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 147 . 2. He is a “small HERO” because the misfortunes of his life do not consist in some “great or signal evil. enjoying title. wealth and power. Her statement reflects the strength of her sense of individual worth. In this way.” but in “pitiful misadventures. 3. It allows a more profound insight into the character’s mind. forbidding the reading “appetite” to fail and bringing in variety.T. It creates a greater sense of suspense and anticipation. his gifts and virtues set him above common people. since the letters usually record moments of crisis in the character’s experience. they create a sort of suspense. The conception of character: he is interested not in the uniqueness of individuals. and this impression of unmediaded communication strengthens his belief in the character’s sincerity. Fielding finds the omniscient point of view more suitable to his intentions. 2. His style: while the style of Defoe and Richardson is closer to the plainness of common speech. The narrative manner: unlike Defoe and Richardson. 8. living and the act of writing overlap each other.” The image of the “ungracious Duchess” – Fortune – pelting him with a series of “cross [i. Digressions keep the reader’s curiosity awake. He is always a prominent figure. that is. 2.F. This technique may thus give a dramatic quality to the narrative.

116127. 1991 (pp. 143-163. Penguin Books Limited. 234-238) 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 598-602. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 712-718.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Further reading 1. Daiches. The English Novel. vol. 179-195. 2003 (pp. The English Eighteenth Century: The Novel in Its Beginnings. Macsiniuc. Walter. A Critical History of English Literature. 217-231. 76-80) 2. 37-42. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Cornelia. 1969 (pp. 731-736) 3. 701-704. David.3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). 53-59. 43-46. Allen.

3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 150 150 150 151 151 153 153 154 154 155 156 158 158 159 161 161 162 163 166 166 167 168 170 171 171 173 173 174 176 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 149 .4.3. 6. 6. 6.7. 6.2.4. Unit objectives English pre-Romantic poetry Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The poetry of melancholy meditation The interest in early poetry The pre-Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The rural universe in 18thcentury poetry The sentimental approach: Oliver Goldsmith Character sketch in The Deserted Village The realistic approach: George Crabbe Robert Burns and the popular tradition Pre-Romantic nature poetry James Thomson. 6.2. The Seasons William Cowper. 6.1.4. 6.2.1.2. the Romantic visionary The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Knowledge in the world of Experience The double vision in Blake’s Songs Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.4. 6.3.6. 6.3.English pre-Romantic poetry UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY Unit Outline 6 6.1. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.4.2.1.2. 6.2. 6.1. 6.1.2. 6.3.4. 6. 6.1. 6.3.4.4. 6.2. 6.4.3.1.5. 6.4.

as well as the preoccupation of 18th century analytic thought with the workings of the human mind. however. to bring the significant aspects of human life and behaviour into the light of public attention. Neoclassicism*. The sentimental novel* (e. The optimism and pragmatism of a rational age which believed in progress were reflected in literature as well. subjective experience is displayed not only in fiction. For instance. which became the vehicle for the expression of private feeling and assumed a personal voice. Literature was called to deal with matters of public interest.English pre-Romantic poetry By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ explain the shift in literary taste that occurred in the latter half of the 18th century ♦ define the main interests and tendencies in pre-Romantic poetry ♦ point out elements of continuity and discontinuity between pre-Romantic poetry and Augustan literature ♦ compare the representation of the rural universe in the works of 18th century poets ♦ describe the pre-Romantic approach to the theme of nature ♦ specify pre-Romantic and Romantic features of William Blake’s work ♦ analyse Blake’s notions of Innocence and Experience in the context of particular poems ♦ describe the contrasting visions in poems by Blake Unit objectives 6. but also in a new kind of meditative poetry. and Fielding).g. The interest in individual psychology. Samuel Richardson) is one manifestation of this tendency. One trend in the 18th century poetry of meditation was the preference for the expression of melancholy and dark thoughts. led to an increasing attention to emotional response. the century of the Enlightenment was not without paradoxes and contradictions. elegance and decorum*. discipline. harmony. as is proved by the works of the great Augustan writers (Steele. and for night as a setting. was eminently the Age of Reason. Addison. the century of the Enlightenment*. Swift.1. which in turn favoured the emergence of the cult of Feeling. and cultivated its public relevance. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling 150 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The concern with personal. regarded art as the product of civilisation. whose literary-artistic expression was the Neoclassical doctrine. Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The eighteenth century. with its emphasis on order. This new poetic trend ran counter to the optimistic confidence of the Age of Reason. Pope. and the sensibility that it cultivated favoured the rise of the Gothic novel. Like any modern age. the cult of Reason favoured an attitude of humanitarianism and social benevolence.

Macpherson claimed to have translated these poems from “the Gaelic or Erse* language. It consisted in long blank verse* meditations on such things as earthly vanity. whose life had passed in complete anonymity. It is in this tradition that one of the most popular poems in English must be placed: Elegy written in a Country Churchyard.1. legendary Irish bard and hero Ossian. His long poem in nine books. Macpherson’s “Ossianic poems” are pieces of highly rhetorical poetic prose. Its gloomy setting – the churchyard. Celtic* and Norse* legend and mythology.2. Edward Young (1683-1765) 6.D. and it exerted an immense influence both in England and on the Continent. The perfect form of Gray’s poem shows his classical training. Thomas Percy published a collection of mediaeval ballads. but its subject and mood are preRomantic. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. supposed to have lived in the 3rd century A. known as the Graveyard School of poetry.1. He also claimed that their author was the (painted by Nicolai Abildgaard. which leads the poet to a sad meditation on “the short and simple annals* of the poor” – the joys and sorrows of the country-folk. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 151 . sublime landscapes. imitating partly the cadence of biblical verses and of Milton’s blank verse. Young and other poets formed a distinct trend in the mideighteenth century. The poetry of melancholy meditation Edward Young is one of the most important representatives of this new kind of reflective poetry. In 1765. The most spectacular manifestation of this interest is the volume Poems of Ossian. and misty. with tombstones lit by the pale moon – contributed to the birth of the taste for Gothic. whose basic motifs were the shortness and sorrows of life and the inexorable passage of time. Night Thoughts (1742-1745). by Thomas Gray (1716-1771). This new interest was reflected in the curiosity about “primitive* poetry” – biblical poetry. It begins with the contemplation of the landscape. The interest in early poetry Another tendency which announced a change in literary sensibility was a new sense of the past. and folk literature in general. but its influence on the birth of Romanticism* in England and on the Continent was huge. 1782) What Macpherson presented as a great primitive Celtic epic turned out to be entirely his own imaginary creation. The fascination with the Middle Ages is another feature which illustrated the rise of the Romantic sensibility. which awakened a steady interest in older poetic styles.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. published in 1765 by James Macpherson (17361796). is the most outstanding expression of this new spirit in poetry.” and to have collected them in the Ossian Highlands of Scotland*.1. wild. which contrasts with the Augustan focus on contemporary civilisation. and the dominant tone is that of nostalgia and regret. The lamentations of the blind bard evoke an ancient world of heroic virtue. death and immortality.

is a pre-Romantic reaction against Neoclassic literary decorum. SAQ 1 Read the partial statements below and match them. Like James Macpherson. young Thomas Chatterton (1752-1770). Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. reflected… 4. at the end of the unit. d. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The melancholy poetry of the Graveyard School. the victim of an (1856) insensitive and hostile world. of Thomas Percy’s collection of ballads. The coming generation of Romantic poets turned by Henry Wallis him into a legend. regarding him as a martyr. read again the previous subchapters. … a. but they proved to be (like the Ossianic poems) entirely the product of Chatterton’s inflamed Death of Chatterton. … as well as Gothic fiction. … Chatterton is also the author of a literary “fraud. If you have failed to make the right match for every sentence. aspiring to poetic fame. imagination.” presenting his own poems as authentic mediaeval verse. in 1765. published a volume of poems presented as belonging to the mediaeval poet-monk Thomas Rowley. who claimed to have translated an ancient Celtic epic poem by the legendary Ossian. … the pre-Romantic interest in the Middle Ages and popular poetry. When his literary fraud was exposed. Chatterton committed suicide. The completed sentences will describe aspects of the emergence of a pre-Romantic current in 18th century poetry. c.English pre-Romantic poetry In 1770. 1. The publication. with its taste for the macabre and the supernatural. 152 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . … 3. The churchyard was a favourite setting … 2. with its gloomy atmosphere. … for the pre-Romantic poetry of melancholy meditation. Write the correct sequel in the space provided for each sentence. These poems displayed lyric grace and the promise of talent. b.

There was a growing suspicion that civilisation may have a corrupting effect on man’s innate goodness. characteristic of the Enlightenment. such as the song and the ballad. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 153 . the inspiration from folk myths and legends. and indeed the tendency along the century was to abandon it for poetic forms that allowed more freedom. A return to blank verse – for which Shakespeare and Milton were the great models – allowed greater flexibility of expression. The rural universe in 18th century poetry The emerging Age of Sensibility oriented the critical spirit.2. valued for their simplicity and directness by the first Romantics (William Wordsworth. but also literary forms. In the latter part of the century. The return to blank verse 6.1.g. The pre. Towards the end of the century.Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The transition from the Augustan to the Romantic age was slow and long. we shall look more closely at two important pre-Romantic aspects of 18 th century poetry: the development of a sentimental interest in rural life. busy life of the city with moral confusion. In the following subchapters. The emphasis on sentimental response. Samuel Taylor Coleridge). The great novelists (e. and the 18 th century abounded in optimistic utopias about an idyllic. and the emergence of a distinct poetic attitude towards nature. the state of nature began to be idealised. This change in taste concerned not only themes and subjects. patriarchal society in which men could enjoy fully their natural right to freedom. the interest in rural life and its contrast with civilisation.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. and the simplicity of country life with moral virtue. towards the highest achievement of man’s Reason: civilisation itself. sometimes within the context of Augustan conventions. the interest in the local and national past. Elements of a pre-Romantic sensibility can be found all along the century. William Blake would call the heroic couplet* the “great cage” of Augustan poetry. an interest developed in popular forms of poetry. Under the influence of Jean Jacques Rousseau*.3. Henry Fielding) would often associate the turbulent. The sentimental opposition between town and country was to become a convention in 18 th century literature. the new feeling for nature – these were features indicating that literary taste was changing.

English pre-Romantic poetry

6.2.1. The sentimental approach: Oliver Goldsmith
An idyllic view of the countryside is present in the poem The Deserted Village (1770), by Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774). Goldsmith’s literary preferences were Neoclassic, but his remarkable achievement is to have combined a sentimental theme with the elegant, balanced form of the Augustan couplet. The poem is Goldsmith’s reaction to a social and economic reality: the enclosure* of land, a capitalist process which changed radically the life of the traditional village. Goldsmith sets in contrast the former happiness of Auburn (an idealised version of his native village, in Ireland) with the desolation of the present, when the land is concentrated in the hand of “one only The Deserted Village master.” He remembers the days gone by, with their “humble illustration by happiness” spent in the middle of a hard-working but cheerful and W. Lee Hankey warm-hearted community. Their life was measured then by the cycles (1900 edition) of agricultural labour, alternating with the simple “sports” (i.e. amusements) and pleasures of the moments of well-deserved leisure. Goldsmith gives an idyllic picture of a rural paradise, in which man lives in harmony with nature and enjoys “health and plenty,” “innocence and ease,” and in which toil becomes a pleasure. This sentimental image of the “loveliest village of the plain” is only a memory, and the poet constantly moves between the happy past and the sorrowful present. His evocation of the past charms of “sweet Auburn” has an elegiac tone, and he laments the disintegration of the traditional, stable rural civilisation. Goldsmith blames the decay of the former way of country life on the increasing greed of man, on the excessive concern with accumulation of wealth, and on the vice of “luxury.” His village was an idyllic microcosm, a small but organic universe sustained by temperance and virtue, but incapable to resist the pressure of the new economic tendencies.

6.2.2. Character sketch in The Deserted Village
The Deserted Village illustrates not only Goldsmith’s sharp sense of observation in the description of natural beauty and of the human scene, but also his art of character sketch. His remembrance of the old days in Auburn focuses now and then on some member of the community, whom he evokes in short, precise and vivid features. Among his notable miniature portraits is that of the village schoolmaster, whose small eccentricities are captured with affectionate humour. A memorable sentimental description is that of the village preacher. Goldsmith emphasises the decency, moderation and humility of his simple life, “remote from towns,” his complete lack of ambition and vanity, and his strong attachment to the place and community which he serves. Firm in his moral guidance and a severe judge of human “wanderings,” Goldsmith’s parson is, however, a truly charitable soul, “to all the country dear.”

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SAQ 2 The portrait of the preacher in The Deserted Village completes the idyllic picture of Auburn in the old days. Below, there are several features of this character. Read Text 6.1., containing a fragment from Goldsmith’s poem, and identify those lines which illustrate or suggest these features. Write these lines down in the provided spaces, after each mentioned feature. 1. moderation (1 line): 2. strong attachment to the humble community that he served (2 lines):

3. complete lack of worldly ambition or vanity ( 2 lines):

4. selflessness and sincere concern for the fate and spirit of those in pitiful circumstances (1 line): 5. hospitality to the poor (2 lines):

6. severity in his judgement of human error, but unconditional charity (1 line):

Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs, at the end of the unit. If they should differ significantly, read the fragment from Goldsmith again.

6.2.3. The realistic approach: George Crabbe
Goldsmith’s idealisation of rural life received a sharply realistic reply from a poet who also continues the Augustan tradition: George Crabbe (1754-1832). His poem in rhymed couplets The Village (1783) is an attack on those poetic conventions which created the illusion of the innocence and happiness of country life. Crabbe’s medical practice afforded him a first hand observation of the rural world, and the sentimental cult of its idyllic charm had little to do with the realities that he encountered. His poem aims to paint village life “as Truth will paint it and as bards will not”. Instead of the cheerful ease, the innocent pleasures and the rewarding toil described in Goldsmith’s Deserted Village,
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English pre-Romantic poetry

Illustration to (1905 edition)

The Village

Crabbe presents a sordid reality. For him, the sad truth of village life is the people’s hopeless poverty, their many vices, their struggle with an unfriendly nature for the daily bread. Despised and neglected by the rich, they lead a bitter existence, whose miseries never end. Crabbe denounces the unreality and artificiality of pastoral poetry, whose Muse knows nothing of the real pains and cares of the peasants. The moralist in him could not accept to disguise their deplorable fortune “in tinsel trappings [i.e. glittering ornaments] of poetic pride.” The classical image of the happy shepherd playing his pipe in the fields is out of place in the contemporary world, only a “mechanic echo” of other literary times. To prolong this convention, painting everything in “fair colours,” means to deviate from “Truth and Nature.” Crabbe pleads for a change in the poets’ attitude towards the subject of country life, in the belief that its realistic reflection will at least awaken curiosity and sympathy in the reader. The superficial praise of an idealised, conventional world serves only the poet’s vanity. The peasant, “overcome by labour” and consumed with many cares, would not get any comfort from such praise. Crabbe’s poem is completely unromantic, removing the veil of poetic illusion from a subject that was already a conventional one. However, his realism and critical spirit did not exclude genuine compassion. His sympathetic interest in the life of humble people anticipates the radical attitude of the first great English Romantic poet, William Wordsworth.

6.2.4. Robert Burns and the popular tradition
At about the same time, the Scottish peasant-poet Robert Burns (1759-1796) was opening a path towards the Romantic revolution in poetry. Written in his native tongue, the collected poems he published in 1786 were the authentic expression of a passionate nature, whose experiences were fundamentally linked to the universe of rural life. These poems are greatly indebted to the popular tradition of poetic forms (songs, ballads, etc.) and they display either delicate sentimental lyricism or vigorous realism, spirit and humour. Their intensely personal tone and their vividness and warmth in the description of the natural scene contrasted sharply with the formal rigidity and didacticism of much late 18th century poetry. Burns’s success as a poet confirmed the early Romantic belief in the close connection between nature, spontaneity of feeling, and poetic imagination. It was Burns who provided the lyrics for the song Auld Lang Syne, whose title means “old times” or “times past”. They were partly Burns’s composition, partly his transcription, as he said, “from an old man’s singing.”

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SAQ 3 Text 6.2. in the Reader contains a fragment from The Village, in which Crabbe invites those who idealise the countryside in “smooth” verse to take a closer look at its realities. Read the fragment and point out that the image he offers is an antithesis to the idyllic picture of “rural ease.” How does Crabbe’s description contradict the nostalgic image in Goldsmith’s poem? You might find it helpful to read again subchapter 6.2.1. for a better perception of the contrast. Answer in the space below, in no more than 15 lines / 150 words.

Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs, at the end of the unit. If they should differ significantly, read the fragment from Crabbe again, making sure you have understood it correctly. Read again the paragraphs referring to Goldsmith in the preceding subchapter, as well.

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etc. With James Thomson (1700-1748) and his long poem The Seasons (1726-1730). in which the descriptive detail was often used in order to create a certain mood. and the moral sentiment. As Dr.” Thomson confesses that he knows “of no other subject more elevating. but also the feeling for it. Pre-Romantic nature poetry One of the most significant shifts in poetic sensibility was the new attitude to nature. Britannia. In spite of its eclectic nature. The conventional Augustan “local” poem (or “topographical” poem*) looked at nature from the perspective of historical or classical mythological associations. Thomson practically inaugurated the trend of descriptive-meditative poetry. more ready to awake the poetical enthusiasm.1. Thomson evokes the glory and joy of reviving nature in spring. an expression of national pride. becomes an object of interest in itself. Samuel Johnson said. manifest as early as the 1730s.3. and that he never yet has felt what Thomson impresses. James Thomson (1700-1748) 158 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . poetic renderings of current notions of natural history. The Seasons In the Preface to the fourth part of The Seasons. The Augustans were interested in nature only to the extent that it helped them emphasise the conquests of civilization. The Seasons has a unity ensured by the recurrent themes and motifs related to the observable natural universe.” inspired many other poets along the 18th century. His poem educated. James Thomson. nature. the splendour of summer. “Winter.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. It contains reflections on the natural and social condition of man and on Nature as the manifestation of the divine ordering mind. political comments. in many generations of readers. the peace of autumn – bringer of “Philosophic Melancholy” –.” Thomson’s ambitious poem in blank verse is remarkably inclusive: its descriptions of nature occasion indeed frequent meditations on a variety of contemporary ideas and interests. as well as his glorification of “retirement in solitude” as the best state in which to “sing the works of nature. more amusing. with a remarkable attention to detail and precision of notation.” The Seasons marked an important moment in 18th century poetry. praise of friends. not only the perception of nature. It appealed both to the Augustans and to the Romantics. Each of the four parts of the poem describes seasonal aspects of nature and rural life. Thomson is also famous for the patriotic lyrics that he wrote for the song Rule.3. His praise of nature and of the countryside. the philosophical reflection. “The reader of The Seasons wonders that he never saw before what Thomson shows him. exerting a considerable influence on both of them. and the apparent cruelty of winter. in its magnificence and diversity. than the works of Nature. patriotic enthusiasm. 6.

living in retirement from the city. Like Thomson and Collins. which represents a fragment from Thomson’s The Seasons – more exactly..3.2. He reaches perfection in his famous Ode to Evening (1746). in which a sensitive and thoughtful Christian. from the third part. but his blank verse poem has a much more personal tone. with its short. How does the Philosophic Melancholy influence the poet? Answer below. in a paragraph of no more than 6 lines / 60 words. If there should be major differences. Passages of moral and political commentary. and his feeling for Nature is that of a pre-Romantic. more carefully. read text C again. in which he captures with precision and delicacy the crepuscular atmosphere. which actually inspired Thomson). social satire.” Autumnal nature favours a contemplative-meditative mood. Cowper displays an Augustan concern for elegance and refinement in expression. whose work brings into harmony the various tendencies in 18th century poetry. unrhymed stanzas. but his subjects anticipate the Romantic sensibility. He preferred the classical form of the ode*.3. which the poet calls “Philosophic Melancholy” (remember Milton’s Il Penseroso*. William Collins 6. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The Task has actually been described as a spiritual autobiography. and he displayed the Augustan taste for stylistic refinement. William Cowper.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 4 Read Text 6. He was interested in the mediaeval past. the poem The Task (1785) by William Cowper (1731-1800) reflects a similar attraction to the theme of nature. records his observations and reflections. The Task Much closer in time to the beginning of the Romantic Age. in popular superstitions and the supernatural. One of Thomson’s great admirers was William Collins (17211759). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 159 . religious meditations and character sketches accompany Cowper’s celebration of rural domestic happiness and communion with nature. “Autumn.

the peace and quiet of village life. Your answer should not exceed 10 lines / 100 words. Retirement to the countryside does not mean for him idle solitude – it is not isolation that he seeks in rural nature. S. like gardening. affected] the country. extracted from Cowper’s The Task.” Sometimes. 160 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The contemplation of nature has a healing effect on Cowper. / Paradise that has survived the fall.4. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.English pre-Romantic poetry illustration by Birket Foster. Coleridge). He praises the simple pleasures. fearing that “The town has tinged [i. concerning the opposition country/town. in the 18th century. As a poet of nature. represents one of the most memorable statements. and of simple. in the Reader. with its vices and follies. domestic activities.e. T. indicate an affectionate observer. and his expressions of gratitude for the spiritual comfort and superior joys that it offers anticipated the first generation of English Romantics (W. SAQ 5 Text 6. Wordsworth. Cowper displays a remarkable eye for detail and a landscape-painter’s sense of perspective. Cowper’s love of nature is closely linked to his love of the countryside. in which he can find shelter against depression and anxiety. but the joy of communion with friends. however. he becomes aware of the instability of this last retreat from the confusions and corruption of modern urban civilisation. at the end of the unit. Rural “domestic happiness” seems to him “the only bliss. His meticulous descriptions of countryside scenery and animal life. of the seasonal diversity of natural aspects. which he opposes to the civilisation of the city. Read again the fragment if you answer is significantly different. 1856 The Task. Read this fragment and explain why Cowper finds the countryside superior to the urban world.

to a large extent. to the special way in which he produced his work. represents symbolically the uncorrupt order of nature.4. In Blake. Each copy was then coloured by hand. finding literary inspiration in the simplicity and directness of popular poetry. In his first great illuminated work. and Macpherson. Gray. which was accompanied by drawings and decorations. all Blake’s major poems were composed in this way. the visionary artist William Blake holds a unique place in the history of English literature. Like other pre-Romantic poets. He was not only a poet. widening the range of meanings. The combination of calligraphic text. It was in the latter half of the 19th century that he was rediscovered by a group of poets and painters. 6. Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake is often regarded as a pre-Romantic poet. Milton. rendered in its pastoral simplicity. Blake did not publish his poems in conventional printed form. Nature “nurses” the sympathy for our fellow beings. Apart from a volume of early verse. he turns his attention to the rural world.civilisation. William Blake. Thomson. and being regarded as an eccentric artist. but also a gifted painter and engraver. exerting influence only on a small circle of friends and admirers. and recognised as one of the most original creators.English pre-Romantic poetry Both Thomson and Cowper see a strong connection between love of nature and a humanitarian spirit. picture and decoration reminds of the painful. these various dimensions of his works shed light on each other. our sense of a common fate for all humanity. He used a special method for engraving and printing the handwritten text. and his creative personality manifested itself in combined and complementary modes of expression. minute work of mediaeval miniaturists and their illuminated* manuscripts. and displays the same humanitarian spirit as his contemporaries. whose attitudes and concerns define him sharply as an anti-Augustan. William Blake (1757-1827) 6. the rural setting. The theme of childhood in this work enables Blake to explore the opposition nature . Blake’s late fame is due. in the tone and rhythms of Biblical psalms and religious hymns. “unfit for human fellowship” and “dead” to “love and friendship both” (Cowper). He associates nature with the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 161 .4. A heart that is insensitive to nature is a hard heart. The charms of nature have also an almost magic influence on human creativity and depth of thought. These beliefs – in Nature as a moral teacher and as a guide for imagination – were central to the creed of the first Romantics. Songs of Innocence and of Experience (1794). and this laborious process restricted the number of copies that Blake could produce. He was a relatively marginal figure during his lifetime.1. and he rejected the classical standards of style. He was an admirer of Shakespeare.

2. / I will not reason and compare: my business is to create. in Blake’s last poem.” This is Blake’s own creed.” Blake worshipped Imagination as the only true way to spiritual freedom. in a way.” asserting that ”Imagination has nothing to do with Memory. says. and he denounces the evils of civilisation. by William Blake 162 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . for instance: “I copy Imagination. One of Blake’s mythological creatures in these poems. His rebellion against the “systems” which limit the energies of the Imagination takes a literary form in his Prophetic Books*. or be enslaved by another man’s. They are. a prophet. original and strange. is one of the most powerful assertions of Romantic creativity. owing to the intensity with which he proclaimed the primacy of the Imagination over Reason and his deep conviction that the poet was a seer. The classical Muses were for him the “Daughters of Memory”*. Los*. and whom he saw as the embodiment of the revolutionary impulse.” He is a true Romantic in his belief that poetic creation is a spontaneous. and he opposed to them the “Daughters of Inspiration. He insisted on the visionary and inspired quality of his writings – he asserted. in which Blake creates a mythology of his own. whom Blake (like the other Romantics) venerated. unpremeditated act. a tribute to Milton. Jerusalem: “I must create a system. Plate from the poem Jerusalem (1805-1820). 6. which oppresses man in the name of Reason and Progress.4. He distrusted all systems of thought and institutions that restrained man’s freedom and imagination. the Romantic visionary Blake is also frequently assimilated to the first generation of Romantic poets. Blake was a rebel. Like the other English Romantics. and his whole work. Blake.English pre-Romantic poetry innocence of man in his condition before the Fall – the “childhood” of humanity –.” or “I write when commanded by spirits.

poetic creation was the spontaneous fruit of inspiration. these are “happy songs / Every child may joy [i. the association of childhood with edenic nature is opposed to civilisation as the fallen condition of man. As the poet emphasises in the Introduction.3. Spring. T F 2. 6. What chiefly impressed Blake in Milton’s Paradise Lost was its astonishing display of classical-humanistic erudition. The subchapter that follows will acquaint you with some of the poems illustrating Blake’s “double vision” in Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Laughing Song.4. revise the whole subchapter. Blake enjoyed a great popularity during his lifetime. at the end of the unit. that is. and the three statements that are false. Blake composed his first significant work: Songs of Innocence. As a poet. T F 7. 1. The main influence in Blake’s work were the ancient Greek and Latin poets admired by the Augustans. It was the year of a revolution in poetry as well. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. innocent delights. T F 5.e. The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence In 1789 – the year of the French Revolution –. of the world seen through the eyes of the child. T F 4. The Shepherd. T F 3. In Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Blake is a creator of myths in his Prophetic Books. and its origin was visionary experience.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 Read the following sentences and identify the four true statements which describe features of Blake’s work. Songs of Innocence marked a new departure in English poetry. by their remarkable lyrical delicacy. or Cradle Song offer a glimpse into a world filled with simple. The Echoing Green. with its repertoire of rhetorical conventions. 163 Songs of Innocence (1789) Title page of Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Blossom.” They build a charming picture of the universe of childhood. their clarity of expression and their musicality. which are the expression of his Romantic rebellion against all forms of constraint. T F 6. The extreme formal simplicity and the apparent lack of sophistication of these short poems anticipated the Romantic rejection of poetic diction*. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). For Blake. enjoy] to hear. If you have made mistaken choices. Blake’s works combine the handwritten text with picture and decoration – a technique that reminds of mediaeval manuscripts. which echoed the rhythms of popular verse. echoing with laughter and sustained by love and by the belief in the goodness of nature. Poems like Infant Joy.

suggesting the child’s closeness to a protective divinity. The adult figures represented in these poems share the child’s freshness of perception and capacity for joy. or even Jesus. “Old John. associated with childhood. with which Blake was acquainted.” as the happiness of the children playing around him and the animation of nature in Spring enable him to recreate his own joys of childhood. in his natural tendency to virtue. Innocence. because she has the empathic understanding of the children’s need for freedom. According to him. and absence of frustration or inhibition. does not mean ignorance. and every child is a manifestation of the Divine Imagination in the world. allows the children more time to play “on the green [i. The world of Innocence is the paradise of freedom. Blake filtered these ideas through his own intense idealism and his unconventional religious beliefs. Infant Joy (Songs of Innocence) 164 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Blake rejected the praise of Reason as man’s supreme faculty and proclaimed instead the importance of man’s “Poetic Genius. the Songs of Innocence display protective figures like the caring mother or nurse. is a biblical allusion. love. Blake identifies Jesus with the Imagination. the shepherd. The child has a kind of wisdom which comes from the freshness and freedom of his imagination. Besides the children themselves. and the perception of childhood was greatly influenced by Jean Jacques Rousseau’s ideas. although the sun has set.e. who express their candid feelings of piety and uninhibited joy. the pressure of civilisation and an education which cultivates the intellect at the expense of the soul are likely to destroy in man the natural state of grace. which a proper education should develop. In The Echoing Green. For Blake. taking care of his flock of innocent lambs. The innocence associated with childhood is for him the equivalent of the original state of paradisal innocence.English pre-Romantic poetry Nurse’s Song (in Songs of Innocence) The theme of childhood emerged in late 18th century poetry in the context of the rising cult of Feeling. In these poems. The pastoral figure of the shepherd receives in Blake a Christian connotation. in Nurse’s Song.” Throughout his work. The good shepherd. with white hair. It is a world in which evil has not penetrated and in which there is no suffering.” can “laugh away care. meadow]”. the guardian angel. The pastoral setting symbolises the closeness of man to a benevolent nature and the bliss enjoyed by man in Paradise. gratified desire. The nurse. Rousseau believed in the original innocence of man. childhood represents the unfallen state of man.

Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 7 Read Text 6.5. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. What makes this poem a Song of Innocence? Start from the idea that The Lamb may be read as the vision of Innocence on the act of Creation. If there should be a significant difference between them. in the Reader. and in which he represents to himself its “making. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 165 .” Answer in the space below. at the end of the unit. which reproduces Blake’s poem The Lamb. Focus on the way in which the child imagines the creator of the lamb. in no more than 20 lines / 200 words.

the ethical and social implications are more obvious. the thirst for war. Like the chimney sweeper. A poem like A Poison Tree points out Title page of the murderous effects of secret hate. The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Blake developed such implications into open statements. i. when this life ends. full of indignation and anger. The fall from the paradise of Innocence to Experience is the entrance in a world of rules and constraints.4. The serene and peaceful pastoral setting of the world of Innocence is set in opposition with the sombre world of Experience. protesting against the evils of his time. The complete work offered now a set of contrary symbolic visions of man. In Songs of Experience. Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence Blake’s graceful Songs of Innocence may appear to be simple and transparent. society and divinity.e. However. The world is seen through the eyes of an angry observer. even sarcastic. Blake’s speakers in these poems are often bitter and ironic. disease. 6. which deny man his freedom. often. and Nurse’s Song shows the (1794) jealousy consuming an adult who has lost the vision of Innocence. In The Chimney Sweeper*. it is suggested that human suffering and oppression is the result of “mind-forged manacles*”. but the child in the poem is comforted by the vision of the Angel. In The Little Black Boy – an anti-slavery poem –.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. but. the reader cannot miss the implicit reference to the social reality of children’s exploitation and cruel treatment. of “stony laws*”. the greed of the powerful and their indifference to the sufferings caused by social injustice. the little black boy is “protected” by his imagination and finds the same comfort for the present sorrows in the Christian promise of a happy afterlife. the ironic implication in the poem is that the English colonisers “taught” Christianity to the natives only to be able to exert better control over them. envy and deceit.4. in the poems that he added in 1794: the Songs of Experience. or the mind of others. hate. the reader cannot help noticing paradoxes and contradictions. of the prejudices and constraints with which man “enchains” his own mind. standing equal before God. Beyond the children’s innocent visions of happiness and harmony. a gloomy reality makes itself felt sometimes. 166 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The poet attacks the tyranny exercised on the individual by the church and state.4. in which man’s lot is hard work. the child has a wonderful vision of all souls freed from their “clouds” of flesh – black or white –. In the fallen state of Experience.5. The source of corruption in the world of Experience and the impediments to happiness are as much in the systems regulating social life as in the individual heart and mind. The Clod and the Pebble Songs of Experience contrasts selfless with selfish love. In London. love and joy have been replaced by fear. which is a promise of divine mercy. for instance. poverty and oppression. for instance. nature.

SAQ 8 In Blake’s poem Infant Sorrow. The speaker in the latter poem wonders not only who created the “fearful symmetry” of the powerful. and the rhythms of the poems are also more difficult.e. while The Tyger consists only in an accumulation of questions. The two stanzas of The Lamb contain the child’s simple. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. with no explicit answer. by ambiguity and even obscurity. The implication is that knowledge in the state of Experience is always incomplete and fragmentary. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 167 . Read this poem – Text 6. the event of a child’s birth becomes the symbol of the fall into the world of Experience. in a paragraph of 10 lines / 100 words at the most. dangerous tiger.English pre-Romantic poetry 6.6. If it should differ in major respects. This suggests that the world of Experience is more opaque and uncertain. The counterpart of The Lamb in Songs of Experience is The Tyger* and this pair of poems illustrates very well the contrastive vision in Blake’s work.4. but also if this creator is also that of the gentle lamb. in the Reader – and find out in its lines suggestions for at least one aspect which defines this “dangerous” world. in Songs of Experience. provoking more anxiety than certainty. Knowledge in the world of Experience The clarity and directness of Songs of Innocence is replaced. you]?) and his own answer. who made thee [i. innocent question (“Little Lamb. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Quote the respective words or line(s) and give your comment in the space below.6.

” In the counterpart poem. One of the targets of Blake’s critical attacks is the Church.” Such corresponding poems illustrate the fact that Innocence and Experience are not necessarily to be associated with ages in man’s life. 168 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . since those are “babes reduced to misery. indeed.” or with a “multitude of lambs. Blake hated nevertheless the church as an institution. This is the God of the world of Experience. and King” “make up a Heaven of our misery. and His Priest. in fact.7. in Blake’s view.” which lead to contrary visions. like that of Hell as a punishment for sin. “contrary states of the human soul. bearing even the same titles. a stern. in Songs of Experience. the spectator to the same scene has a quite different vision. but with ways of seeing and feeling. which are thus strengthening their own power. for keeping man at a distance from God. They reveal. served by the institutionalised churches. Love and Hate are necessary to Human existence. in Blake’s view: “Attraction and Repulsion.English pre-Romantic poetry 6.” The angry speaker protests against the duplicity of a society that feeds its poor “with cold and usurous* hand. A deeply religious person. He displays. Reason and Energy*. and he is also a child. as Blake indicated in the subtitle. The church.” in a country that is “rich and fruitful. Contraries are essential to progression. imposing constraints and inflicting punishment. which allows the rich and powerful of this world to ease their conscience and “buy” Heaven by occasional and festive acts of charity. tyrannical figure. The two poems entitled Holy Thursday* deal with the hypocrisy of the church. was responsible.4. The former is represented in Blake’s work (the Prophetic Books included) as an “angry” God. Blake made in fact a distinction between the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament. this sad reality is shadowed by the speaker’s idyllic description of the poor children of London. a double awareness of his own innocence and of the hypocritical and cruel world around him. The double vision in Blake’s Songs Several other poems in Songs of Experience have a counterpart in Songs of Experience. There is a Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience as well.” The idea of Heaven as a reward of happiness for earthly misery. but also complementary aspects of man’s imagination. The Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience is bitterly ironic about the way in which “God. compared with “flowers” and “Thames’ waters. but he seems to be fully aware of his condition in an unjust world. with its “mysteries”*. In the poem of Innocence.” Blake’s Songs suggest that Innocence and Experience are not only inevitable stages in human growth. seeing it as an instrument of oppression and a source of corruption. was seen by Blake as an instrument by which the church kept men in a state of obedience. He sees nothing “holy” in the beautiful picture.

The two “states of the human soul” are here set in contrast. If there should be major differences between them.1. in the Reader – tells the story of the loss of Innocence and the entrance in the state of Experience.7. Explain them in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. to 6. The speaker’s “journey” to the garden of Love is an attempt to revive the former state. Read the poem carefully and identify the symbols by means of which the two states are contrasted. to regain the vision of Innocence. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and read the poem again more carefully. at the end of the unit. except as an act of remembering.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 9 The poem The Garden of Love – Text 6.4. but he is no longer able to do that.4.2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 169 .. revise subchapters 6.

now threatened by the march of Progress.. g. The other feature is primitivism. and seeks to arouse compassion for the life of labour and poverty of the English peasant. 6. as Blake’s “double” poems suggest.2. you have been acquainted with two poets who turned their attention to the rural universe. The latter may be also seen as complementary aspects of poetic imagination. Another feature of 18th century pre-Romantic poetry is the perception of rural life in its close connection with Nature. the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience completing each other. the interest in early poetry. The first subchapter of this unit deals with two prominent features announcing the Romantic sensibility. The fascination of James Macpherson with Britain’s Celtic past.. nature-civilisation. Oliver Goldsmith emphasises the idyllic happiness of the traditional rural civilisation. imagination and feelings. One of them is the emergence of a kind of meditative poetry fond of melancholy themes and gloomy settings. deals with the way in which poets like James Thomson. William Collins and William Cowper approach the theme of Nature. by focusing on those tendencies in poetry which prefigure the Romantic Age.3. who sees the opposition nature-civilisation in the light of the myth of Paradise and of the Fall.4. The “Graveyard” poets (e. George Crabbe adopts a more realistic and critical view. presents the outstanding figure of William Blake. and of Thomas Chatterton with the Middle Ages anticipates the Romantic spirit. in its relation with “the two contrary states of the human soul”: Innocence and Experience. Their poetry displays an unprecedented attention to natural detail. in whose work pre-Romantic and Romantic elements meet. The transition from the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling in the 18th century was accompanied by changes in literary taste. The theme of Nature in pre-Romantic poetry is sometimes closely associated with the opposition country-town. Subchapter 6. 170 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His Songs of Innocence and of Experience are the testimony of the visionary artist. Edward Young and Thomas Gray) illustrate this new trend. In subchapter 6. The last subchapter. He condemns the literary habit of idealising the countryside. The same theme and situation acquires contrary implications.English pre-Romantic poetry Summary This unit aims at enlarging your picture of the literary diversity of the 18th century. and they acknowledge Nature’s subtle influence on man’s thoughts. The theme of childhood is examined in several Songs.

favour melancholy or morbid themes. for instance. the enclosures meant ruin. or Erse. Gothic novel: a type of fiction that emerged in opposition with the realistic novel in the 18th century. Celtic refers also to the language spoken by the Celts. in Unit 4. Daughters of Memory: in Greek mythology. A tendency in 18th century poetry went precisely against this rule. Energy: for Blake. decorum: see subchapter 4. enclosure: in the latter half of the 18th century. Gray is sadly ironic. children were often employed for the cleaning of chimneys. the nine Muses were indeed the daughters of Mnemosyne.English pre-Romantic poetry Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● pre-Romantic nature vs. putting fences round) common land. The Neoclassic principle of decorum did not. the members of an Indo-European people who inhabited Britain before the arrival of the Romans. and horror. the term “Gothic” referred to the mediaeval inspiration of such tales of mystery. which has survived in parts of Scotland. civilisation rural universe primitivism melancholy sentimentalism humanitarianism childhood imagination Innocence and Experience double vision Glossary • • • annals: yearly record of events. ruins. graveyards. and they were forced to find work in towns or to emigrate to America. the changes in agriculture led to the enclosing (i. while Reason was concerned with setting limits.2. Celtic: related to the Celts. The Celtic variety spoken in Ireland and Scotland is called Gaelic. Imagination was free Energy. as the next subchapter will show. It was a kind of work that contributed to the child mortality rate. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. The first Gothic novel was Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (1764).2. goddess of Memory. 171 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .e. Ireland and Wales. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. For the small farmers. Their father was Zeus. Initially. for the sake of more profitable farming. chimney sweeper: in the 18th century. enclosed portions of land were turned into private parks and gardens. because the life of the poor was not actually reflected in such official records. passion. which they could climb more easily. Haunted castles. Sometimes.

and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 172 . It is associated with the reaction against Neoclassicism.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • secret chambers and corridors. to attend the religious service. Jerusalem. on which the Ten Commandments were written. mysteries: the system of sacramental rites affording access to divinely revealed truths. See also subchapter 4. ode: see the Glossary in Unit 1. 2 in Unit 4. unfeeling – is intensified by Blake’s allusion to Moses and the Tables of the Law. stony laws: the figurative meaning of “stony” – heartless.3. Blake associated “mystery” with secrecy and deceit. Blake distinguished between the prohibitive divinity of the Old Testament. The custom in London was to bring the poor. belonging to the beginnings. Most of Collins’s odes are addressed to personified abstractions (Fear. The feeling of nostalgia for a supposed Golden Age and the praise of the “state of Nature” are also features of primitivism. Il Penseroso: see again subchapter 3. in Unit 3. were typical settings in Gothic fiction. the 39th day after Easter.1. illuminated (about a piece of writing): decorated by the application of colour. the Passions. manacles: a pair of iron rings linked by a chain. Neoclassicism: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Romanticism: see again Romantic in the Glossary in Unit 1. Milton. orphaned children from the charity schools to St. in Unit 5. Primitivism in literature refers to the admiration for and revival of early forms. The Four Zoas. A Prophecy.. and he rejected the pretense of the Church to intermediate between man and God. luxury and materialism of urban civilisation. The Book of Urizen. with His laws formulated as interdictions. Los: Blake’s mythological character represents human Imagination in his epics. Holy Thursday: another name for Ascension Day. wild landscapes. philosophical and political convictions.2. etc. used to secure the hands of a prisoner. which have a complex structure of symbolism and analogies. etc. Among the most important of them are America. or of gold or silver paint. Paul’s Cathedral. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1.1.3. when the ascension of Christ is celebrated. The Book of Los. concerning the typology of the novel in the 18th century. Norse: related to the ancient Scandinavian people. and in which he gives an allegorical shape to his religious. which still preserves elements of the ancient Gaelic culture. who attacked and sometimes settled in parts of Britain between the 8th and 11th centuries. sentimental novel: see subchapter 5. Pity. especially to the Vikings (or Norsemen).) poetic diction: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. as well as against the sophistication. Highlands of Scotland: the mountainous area in northern Scotland. Prophetic Books: the generic name for Blake’s longer (and often obscure) epics. in Unit 1. primitive: original.

and 6. gardens or estates. 6. Tyger: Blake’s spelling of “tiger. 6. SAA no.)..9. the unlawful practice of lending money at an exorbitant rate of interest. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%).13. Send-away assignment no.10.. Point out the pre-Romantic themes and attitudes that these poems illustrate. Remember that. 6. 6.12.. topographical poem: a poem in which the description of a landscape is accompanied by meditation and historical retrospection. and Holy Thursday (Texts 6. 3 will count as 10% in your final assessment.8. with his law of love. • the coherence. whose radicalism strongly influenced the ideology of the French Revolution. The Chimney Sweeper.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • Jesus.. Your commentary should not exceed 50 lines / 500 words. Many topographical poems were praises of particular parks. 3 The Reader includes some of the “pair poems” from Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Nurse’s Song. Pay special attention to the images in these poems and to their symbolic significance.11. clarity. Pay special attention to the instructions for the task. meant to win a patron’s favour.” usurous: from usury. Jean Jacques: (1712-1778): French writer and philosopher. Gallery of personalities • Rousseau. He is the precursor of Romanticism by his belief in the primacy of feeling over reason and in the necessity of the return to nature – a principle which he defended in his treatise on education Émile (1762). in grading your paper. • Read them and show that Blake’s treatment of the theme of childhood depends on the contrast between the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience on the same reality. He condemned social inequality and regarded the sovereignty of the people as the only legitimate form of political power. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 173 .

or seek for power. SAQ 4 The personified Philosophic Melancholy exerts “his” influence on man’s imagination.English pre-Romantic poetry Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. “Remote from towns he ran his godly race. “He chid their [i. Health and virtue are God’s “gifts” to man.” “expiring” fire suggest overwork. disease and poverty. Crabbe’s descriptin of the old man’s weakness and of the pains of old age is meant to contradict the pastoral emphasis on the “health and plenty. 3. SAQ 5 The first line of the fragment contains the implication that everything made by God is perfect. c SAQ 2 1. whereas what man makes is inevitably deficient. Crabbe presents a desolate picture. b. the vagants’] wanderings. he focuses sharply on the withered tree. the “drooping weary” father. Their hard life has no room for illusions about the comforts of old age. Meditation leads to illumination. “His house was known to all the vagrant train” “The long-remembered beggar was his guest” 2. the country is therefore morally superior to the city. In the city. nor wished to change his place” 3. Crabbe also gives a reply to those who idealise rural nature: instead of the pleasing “smooth stream” sung in such poetry. but relieved their pain” 6. By doctrines fashioned to the varying hour” 5. and love of man. in which everything seems to be in decline. and on his thoughts. these gifts are “threatened” – the life of pleasure and luxury with which the city tempts man may corrupt his moral fiber. Its bare. This heightened understanding is accompanied by “correspondent passions”: love of God. “passing rich with forty pounds a year” SAQ 3 In contrast with Goldsmith’s idealised image of rural happiness and ease. “Unpractised he to fawn. 4. “More skilled to raise the wretched than to rise” 4. love of nature.e. Nor e’er had changed. 2. The country is thus a substitute for Eden. the place where “health and virtue” can be found abounding. the “feeble. on his soul. the mind can see beyond the “dim” surface of things. a.” vitality and cheerfulness of the idyllic village life. There is a general sense of decay and exhaustion in the humble scene in the cottage: the “pale” mother. all intensified. 174 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . broken branches are a “sad emblem” of the unrewarding existence of the poor in the countryside. to enable him to bear more easily the burden of life. d. For Cowper.

“Struggling in my father’s hands / Striving against my swaddling bands” – The new born infant is practically a “prisoner” from his first moments in the world. and the father weeps perhaps because his new baby comes into a world of trouble and cares. Experience brings about inhibition and constraint. and is itself one more care in the family. Man. If the child’s play suggests the freedom and pleasure enjoyed in the state of Innocence. my father wept” – In the vision of Experience. 3. struggles in vain. no longer able – or permitted – to relate to God “naturally” and directly. vales) emphasise the close connection between Innocence and Nature.” that is. and the beauty of the “sweet flowers” – symbols of life – is replaced by the grim image of the tombstones. In the second stanza. the “Lamb of God. in the state of Experience. SAQ 8 Examples: 1. At the same time. The church as an institution belongs to the world of Experience. F SAQ 7 The child cannot imagine the Creator of the lovely and tender creature otherwise than “meek and mild.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 1. the God of Love. T. In the simple economy of the poem. incarnated in a child and having the Lamb as a symbol. His swaddling bands and his father’s arms do not suggest care and protection. the few elements of the natural setting (stream. F. T. 2. 5. against which man. SAQ 9 The “garden” where he “used to play” – the Eden of childhood – is the symbol of the state of Innocence. confinement and oppressive authority. meadow. therefore. T. The pain and sorrow accompanying birth are symbolic anticipations of the suffering. The shut gates of the chapel symbolise the estrangement of man from God. “walking their rounds” like soldiers guarding a Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 175 . 7. the lamb is God’s gift to the child: it is a “delight” to look at and to touch. In a vision of Innocence. Nature and Divinity form a harmonious whole. which he has lost. and his “tender voice” fills all nature with joy. T. 2. being thus a source of oppression. but are symbols of limitation. The vision of Experience reveals to him the perspective of death: the garden turns out to be a graveyard. It is the intuition of Innocence that dictates the confident answer to the child: the Creator is Jesus. gentle and humble like the lamb itself. 4. “My mother groaned. it controls man’s relationship with Divinity. 6. disappointments and frustrations that await man in the world of Experience. the child identifies himself and the lamb with Jesus. F. and. The mother “groans” with the pains of delivery.” The child imagines the making of the lamb as the act of love of a generous and protective creator – “making” and “giving” are made somehow equivalent in the first stanza. a child’s birth is no cause for joy. This is also suggested by the gloomy figure of the priests. The interdiction “Thou shall not” on the door of the chapel suggests repression and limitation. in Blake’s vision.

4 (“From Dryden to Johnson”). David. 6987) 176 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Boris (ed. 1969 (pp. 1991 (pp. 652-658.). 84-94) 3. vol. vol. vol. and conditioning man’s access to the mystery of Divinity on the suppression of his desire. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. 692-699) 2. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature.5 (“From Blake to Byron”). London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. 1991 (pp.English pre-Romantic poetry restricted area.. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). Ford. Ford. A Critical History of English Literature. 671-684.). Penguin Books Ltd.. Daiches. Boris (ed.. Further reading 1. Penguin Books Ltd.

Reader READER in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 177 .

ce fără de număr îi sunt facultăţile. what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights me not (…).1. cât de chibzuit şi de admirabil e în faptele sale. shape canopy a large or wide covering (e. pentru mine. to me. this most excellent canopy*. vedeţi. nu ştiu – mi-am pierdut toată voioşia. and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly* frame*. – lost all my mirth*. m-am lăsat de toate obişnuitele exerciţii. 178 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . this majestical roof fretted* with golden fire. Ce minunată lucrare e omul. îmi pare un promontoriu sterp. ability to understand paragon a model of excellence Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi and Dan Duţescu) Hamlet: În ultima vreme – de ce. într-adevăr. the air. literary) the sky fretted decorated foul very bad or unpleasant apprehension understanding. of late recently wherefore why. cât de asemenea unui zeu: frumuseţea lumii. What a piece of work is man! How noble in Reason! How infinite in faculty! In form. Scene II) Hamlet: (…) I have of late*. foregone: to give up goodly pleasant or satisfying in appearance frame form. for what reason mirth happiness and laughter foregone to forego.excelent. seems to me a sterile promontory. ce înseamnă această chintesenţă a ţărânii? Omul nu mă desfată (…). nu-mi pare alta decât un vălmăşag odios şi infect de miasme. Hamlet (Act II. şi. – but wherefore* I know not. in moving. sufletul îmi este atât de apăsat. încât acest frumos tărâm. foregone* all custom of exercises. strălucitor overhanging hanging over firmament (archaic.Reader UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE TEXT 2. şi totuşi. forewent. văzduhul.g. pildă a vieţuitoarelor. acest preaminunat baldachin. how express and admirable! In action how like an angel. look you. the earth. it appears no other thing to me but a foul* and pestilent congregation of vapours. in apprehension* how like a god!! The beauty of the world! The paragon* of animals! And yet. cât de asemenea unui înger în puterea sa de înţelegere. acest mândru firmament ce senalţă deasupra noastră. pământul. această boltă falnică împodobită cu scântei de aur. the sky) brave minunat. cum să spun. this brave* overhanging* firmament*. alcătuirile şi mişcările. cât de nobilă îi este inteligenţa. William Shakespeare.

The death of each day’s life. Out*. brief* candle*! Life’s but a walking shadow. cel ce desface Fuiorul încâlcit al grijii – somnul: El. chinuitor) course fel de mâncare chief most important.2. desfirat. a înnoda ravelled destrămat. neînsemnat) out (interjection) termină. Signifying nothing. That struts* and frets* his hour upon the stage. principal nourisher that which gives (someone) what is needed to grow. William Shakespeare. William Shakespeare. desfăcut sleeve mânecă sore causing grief or sorrow (dureros. live or stay healthy feast ospăţ Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Mi s-a părut c-aud un glas strigând: “Nu mai dormi! Macbeth ucide somnul” Nevinovatul somn. and tomorrow. a se frământa) sound zgomot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 179 . trivial. scalda grelei trude şi balsamul Durerii sufleteşti. And then is heard no more.” the innocent sleep. isprăveşte (stinge-te) brief short in duration candle lumânare to strut a umbla/păşi/călca mândru.3.Reader TEXT 2. it is a tale Told by an idiot. to creep. scene II) Macbeth: Methought* I heard a voice cry “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep. TEXT 2. moartea vieţii fiecărei zile. crept to move quiety and slowly (a se târî. sore* labour’s bath. scene V) Macbeth: Tomorrow. iar la ospăţul vieţii Cel mai de seamă fel. ţanţoş. a poor player. cu un aer important to fret to be distressed. out. trifling (mărunt. Chief* nourisher* in life’s feast* (…). great nature’s second course*. semeţ. a se furişa) petty inessential. full of sound* and fury. Creeps* in this petty* pace from day to day. And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. methought past tense from methinks (archaic): it seems to me to knit up a împleti. şi-a doua mană A marii firi. Macbeth (Act II. Balm of hurt minds. and tomorrow. to be in a state of anxiety and agitation (a se agita. To the last syllable of recorded time. El. Sleep that knits up* the ravelled* sleeve* of care. Macbeth (Act V.

Reader Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Dar mâine şi iar mâine. Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee*. tot mereu. Know thine* own meaning. therefore* wast thou* Deservedly* confined* into this rock Who hadst deserved more than a prison. scene II) Prospero: Abhorred* slave. netrebnic. E o poveste spusă de-un nătâng. I endowed thy purposes With words that made them known: but thy vile* race*. Though thou didst learn*. mârşav.4. and my profit on it Is I know how to curse: the red plague rid you. mărginit) shameful and evil. ce-n ceasul lui pe scenă Se grozăveşte şi se tot frământă Şi-n urmă nu mai este auzit. for that reason wast thou were you deservedly rightly learning teaching vile 180 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . tagmă thou didst learn you did learn to abide a răbda. TEXT 2. The Tempest (Act I. Te stinge. Cu pas mărunt se-alungă zi de zi. nasty (josnic. For learning* me your language! abhorred detested vehemently print mark made on a surface thee you thou didst not you did not thine / thy your wouldst would gabble to utter words rapidly and indistinctly (a bolborosi. stupid (necioplit. a suporta therefore as a result. had that in it which good natures Could not abide* to be with. abject. cruel. William Shakespeare. a bâigui) brutish coarse. Caliban: You taught me language. savage. Şi fiecare “ieri” a luminat Nebunilor pe-al morţii drum de colb. Din vorbe-alcătuită şi din zbucium Şi nensemnând nimic. Spre cel din urmă semn din cartea vremii. Which any print* of goodness will not take. Un biet actor. ticălos) race neam. taught thee each hour One thing or other: when thou didst not*. redus. sălbatic. Took pains to make thee speak. but wouldst* gabble* like A thing most brutish*. lumânare de o clipă! Ni-e viaţa doar o umbră călătoare.

Actorii Ţi-am spus. We are such stuff As dreams are made on. Biserici maiestoase. These our actors. chiar pământul. Caliban: M-ai învăţat vorbi. colour. temelie) fabric building. literary) truly. etc. foretold: a anunţa. Yea*. Leave not a rack* behind. cu singurul folos Că ştiu acum să-njur – dea ciuma-n tine Şi-n limba ce m-ai învăţat. palate mândre. the gorgeous palaces. turnuri Cu turlele în nori. like this insubstantial pageant* faded*. Plămadă suntem precum cea din care Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 181 . structure. William Shakespeare. Cu tot ce-a moştenit. nepricepând Nici tu ce bălmăjeşti. were all spirits and Are melted* into air. the great globe itself. ca-nchipuită scena-aceasta. când meritai Mai mult decât o temniţă. Te-am învăţat de toate.Reader Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Slugoi scârbavnic. a se dizolva baseless unfounded (fără bază. dar proasta-ţi fire. duşi. dar. au fost. rack a floating cloud Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Serbarea noastră s-a sfârşit. duhuri. The cloud-capped towers*. consistency. Te-am surghiunit aici. Nici spulber n-au să lase-n urma lor. alcătuire) cloud-capped towers towers whose tops are capped (covered) by clouds yea (archaic. se vor topi Şi. scene I) Prospero: Our revels* are now ended. shall dissolve And. când tu.5. into thin air: And. The solemn temples. Scoteai doar mugete. The Tempest (Act IV. pe drept. As I foretold* you. toţi. a spune dinainte melted to melt: a se topi. afară doar De-un dram de bunătate! Mi-a fost milă. indeed pageant splendid public show or ceremony faded to fade: to lose brightness. şi-n văzduh S-au destrămat cu toţii. Deşi-ai fost dăscălit. and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. TEXT 2. M-am străduit sa te deprind cu graiul. În stare de orice. fiară. all which it inherit. framework (clădire. revels festivitate teatrală pentru curteni foretold to foretell. avea ceva Ce bunul simţ nu rabdă. like the baseless* fabric* of this vision. ţi-am arătat Al vorbei meşteşug. Şi întocmai Ca funigeii viziunii.

to go. And though it in centre sit. because it doth* remove* Those things which elemented* it. Yet when the other far doth roam*. ‘Twere* profanation of our joys To tell the laity* our love. and make no noise. But trepidation of the spheres. It leans*. Though greater far. Inter-assured of the mind*. they are two so As stiff* twin* compasses are two. but an expansion. is innocent. A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning As virtuous men pass mildly* away*. Like gold to aery thinness beat. And whisper* to their souls. Like the other foot. Thy* soul the fixed foot. Care less eyes. who must. Our two souls therefore. 182 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and hearkens* after it. lips. Moving of the earth* brings harms and fears.Reader Făcute-s visele. That our selves know not what it is. where I begun. which are one. No tear-floods. Such wilt* thou* be to me. TEXT 2. nor sigh-tempests* move. But we by a love so much refined. şi scurta viaţă Împrejmuită ni-e de somn. makes no show To move. Though I must go. The breath goes now. And grows erect*. and some say. if the other do. Dull* sublunary* lovers’ love (Whose soul is sense*) cannot admit Absence. Thy firmness makes my circle just*. no: So let us melt*. John Donne.6. Whilst* some of their sad friends do say. And makes me end. and hands to miss. obliquely run. endure* not yet A breach*. but doth. Men reckon* what it did and meant. If they be two. as that comes home.

hotărât twin îngemănat thy your to roam a hoinări. a lua cu sila. to undergo breach break. softly to whisper a şopti whilst while to melt a-şi înmuia firea. a silui Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 183 . Batter My Heart Batter* my heart. shine. Nor ever chaste. a ajunge în poziţie verticală wilt will thou you just corect. Reason your viceroy* in me. like an usurped town. and would be loved fain*. for. to make disappear which elemented it which constituted/founded it inter-assured of the mind we are both assured that our love is primarily the union of our minds to endure to suffer. to struggle to no end vainly. to no end*. or break that knot again. except you ravish* me. a rătăci to lean. a elibera to enthrall a supune. datorat to labour to work hard. imprison me. blow. therefore subject to change whose soul is sense in which physical presence is essential doth does to remove to take away. leant a se apleca. untie*. ferm. overthrew. a subjuga to ravish a răpi. and bend Your force*. But is captived. Yet dearly I love you. and make me new. to another due*. and stand. and proves weak or untrue*. to long for) to grow erect a se îndrepta. o’erthrow me*. a fi supus (the speaker urges his beloved to face the separation calmly and quietly) tear-floods. I. a fi atent la (here: to seek to join. precis. me should defend. mirean) moving of the earth earthquake to reckon a gândi. John Donne. But am betrothed* unto your enemy.: inflexibil. furtuni de suspine) these are Petrarchan conceits – see the Glossary) ‘twere it were (it would be) the laity those who do not know how strong their love is (from lay: profan.Reader pass away to die mildly gently. exact Text 2. a înrobi. for I Except your enthrall* me.7. Take me to you. fig. gladly betrothed unto logodit cu to untie a dezlega. burn. and seek to mend. batter to hit or beat someone heavily three-personed God the Trinity as yet până acum that I may in order that I may o’erthrow to overthrow. apply your force due cuvenit. a se înclina to hearken a asculta. rupture stiff rigid. Divorce me. you As yet* but knock. That I may* rise. a înfrânge bend your force concentrate. with no result viceroy governor of a territory who acts for and rules in the name of his sovereign (Reason is the viceroy of God in man) untrue disloyal fain (archaic) willingly. never shall be free. sigh-tempests şuvoaie/potop de lacrimi. three-personed God*. Labour* to admit you. breathe. to break. a presupune dull not intense sublunary: beneath the moon. but oh. overthrown: a nimici.

And your quaint* honor turn to dust. were no crime. and think which way To talk. But thirty thousand to the rest. And you should. Nor. shall sound My echoing song. And into ashes all my lust*: The grave*’s a fine and private place. and on thy* forehead gaze. like amorous birds of prey. And yonder* all before us lie Deserts of vast eternity. yet we will make him run. do there embrace. I by the tide Of Humber* would complain. This coyness*. you deserve this state*.8. Lady. in thy marble vault*. For. then worms shall try That long-preserved virginity. and pass our long love’s day. Thus. Rather at once our devour Than languish* in his slow-chapt power*. Two hundred to adore each breast. though we cannot make our sun Stand still. Now therefore. Andrew Marvell. if you please.Reader TEXT 2. Lady. To His Coy Mistress Had we but* world enough. and time. Let us roll all our strength and all Our sweetness up into one ball. Nor would I love at lower rate. And now. And the last age should show your heart. I think. An age at least to every part. Thou* by the Indian Ganges’ side Shouldst* rubies* find. And while thy willing* soul transpires At every pore with instant fires*. But none. I would Love you ten years before the Flood*. Thy beauty shall no more be found. An hundred years should go to praise Thine* eyes. Now let us sport* while we may. But at my back I always hear Time’s winged* chariot* hurrying near. 184 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . My vegetable* love should grow Vaster than empires and more slow. We would sit down. refuse Till the conversion of the Jews*. while the youthful* hue* Sits on thy skin like morning dew*. And tear* our pleasure with rough strife* Thorough* the iron gates of life.

a lâncezi. patimă) grave mormânt. in spite of her coyness. indicates her “willing soul” to sport a petrece. modestie thou you shouldst should ruby rubin Humber an estuary in the north-east of England the Flood Potopul the conversion of the Jews considered to be one of the events at the end of history vegetable growing slowly as a plant thine.Reader had we but… if only we had coyness timiditate. fast chariot ceremonial carriage (car) yonder (poetic) over there vault burial chamber (cavou) quaint odd. a lua cu de-a sila strife violent struggle thorough through Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 185 . groapă youthful de tinereţe. nuanţă. a se plictisi slow-chapt power the power of its slowly devouring jaws to tear (tore. inappropriate (nefiresc) ashes cenuşă lust strong sexual desire (dorinţă. a se veseli to languish a se ofili. inclined instant fires the flush in her face.: swift. tentă dew rouă willing favourably disposed. sfială. torn) a smulge. peculiar. tineresc hue culoare. thy your state ceremonial treatment winged having wings. which. fig.

e to a lesser extent) still always lot fortune. Sonnet VII How soon hath* time. boboc showeth shows (My late spring shows no bud or blossom) semblance outward appearance to deceive to mislead (a înşela) manhood bărbăţie. opportune happy fortunate. returning. though my soul more bent* To serve therewith* my maker. That some more timely*-happy* spirits endueth*. rush bud mugur. Ere* half my days. destiny mean humble. As ever* in my great task-master's* eye. Sonnet XVII When I consider how my light* is spent*. insignificant ever eternity task-master the one who imposes tasks. however mean* or high. chide*. appears [in me] much less – i. to endue: a înzestra (Inward ripeness.2. or soon or slow. his state Is kingly – thousands at his bidding* speed* And post* o'er land and ocean without rest*: They also serve who only stand and wait. lest he. a strict overseer TEXT 3. But my late spring no bud* or blossom showeth*. to prevent That murmur*. All is. It shall be still* in strictest measure even To that same lot*. the subtle* thief of youth. And inward ripeness* doth* much less appear. lucky endueth endues. speed. and present My true account. light denied*?” I fondly* ask. if I have grace to use it so. in this dark world and wide. Perhaps my semblance* might deceive* the truth. John Milton. That I to manhood* am arrived so near.” 186 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1. John Milton. Yet be it less or more. '”Doth God exact* day-labour. who best Bear his mild yoke*. and the will of heaven. but Patience. hath has subtle difficult to perceive or describe because fine or delicate my three and twentieth year my twenty-third year career swift movement ahead. obscure. Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year*! My hasting days fly on with full career*. soon replies: “God doth not need Either man's work or his own gifts. And that one talent* which is death to hide Lodged with me useless*. which endues some more timely-happy spirits. Toward which time leads me. they serve him best.Reader UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON TEXT 3. vârstă adultă ripeness maturitate doth does timely occuring atjust the right moment.

Reader
light eyesight spent used up, exhausted (When I think that my eyesight is gone, before I have even reached the middle of my lifetime… I fondly ask…) ere (poetic) before talent an allusion to the biblical parable of the talents in Matthew (25: 14-30 – parabola talanţilor). Its moral is that a gift from God must not be stored and left unused, but must be multiplied. Milton felt that his “talent” – his gift for poetry – lay useless in darkness, as he had not begun the great epic poem he intended to write. lodged with me useless [talantul/talentul] mi-a fost încredinţat în zadar bent to bend, bent: to incline therewith with that lest he… chide să nu mă dojenească to exact to demand as a right light denied if he denies me (deprives me of) eyesight fondly foolishly (cu naivitate) murmur complaint who…bear his mild yoke cei care-I îndură jugul blând (allusion to Matthew, 11: 30) at his bidding la porunca sa to speed (sped) to hurry, to hasten to post to travel with speed o’er over rest odihnă, repaus

TEXT 3.3. John Milton, Paradise Lost (Book I)
Farewell, happy fields, Where joy for ever dwells! Hail*, horrors! hail, Infernal World! And thou, profoundest Hell, Receive thy* new possessor – one who brings A mind not to be changed by place or time. The mind is its own place, and in itself Can make a Heaven of Hell, a Hell of Heaven. What matter where, if I be still the same, And what I should be, all but less than he Whom thunder hath* made greater? Here at least We shall be free; the Almighty* hath not built Here for his envy, will not drive* us hence*; Here we may reign* secure*, and, in my choice, To reign is worth ambition, though in Hell: Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.
hail an exclamation of greeting thy your hath has the Almighty Atotputernicul hence (archaic) from here; away (will not drive us hence: nu ne va alunga de aici) to reign a domni, a stăpâni secure liniştit, în siguranţă

TEXT 3.4. John Milton, Paradise Lost (Book III)
[God is speaking to His Son, foreseeing man’s fall] Whose fault? Whose but his own? Ingrate, he [i.e. man] had of me All he could have; I made him just and right, Sufficient to have stood*, though free to fall. Such I created all the Ethereal* Powers And Spirits, both them who stood and them who failed; Freely they stood who stood, and fell who fell. …. I formed them free, and free they must remain Till* they enthrall* themselves: I else* must change Their nature, and revoke the high decree
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Unchangeable, eternal, which ordained* Their freedom; they themselves ordained their fall. The first sort* by their own suggestion fell, Self-tempted, self-depraved; Man falls, deceived By the other first: Man, therefore, shall find grace, The other none; in mercy and justice both, Through Heaven and Earth, so shall my glory excel*, But mercy, first and last, shall brightest shine.
stood to stand, stood: a rămâne, a rezista, a se menţine într-o anumită poziţie ethereal celestial, spiritual til until to enthrall to enslave else altfel, altminteri ordained to ordain: to order, to establish, to predestine irrevocably the first sort the angels who had fallen to excel to increase

TEXT 3.5. John Milton, Paradise Lost (Book III)
Not free, what proof could they have given sincere Of true allegiance*, constant faith, or love, Where only what they needs must* do appeared, Not what they would*? What praise could they receive, What pleasure I, from such obedience paid, When Will and Reason (Reason is also Choice), Useless and vain, of freedom both despoiled, Made passive both, had served Necessity, Not me?
allegiance loyalty needs must trebuie neapărat not what they would nu ceea ce ar vrea / ar voi despoiled (of freedom) lipsit (de libertate)

TEXT 3.6. John Milton, Paradise Lost (Book IV)
Sometimes towards Eden which now in his view Lay pleasant, his grieved* look he fixes sad, Sometimes towards heaven and the full-blazing* sun, Which now sat high in his meridian* tower. Then much revolving*, thus in sighs* began: 'O thou that with surpassing glory crowned Look'st* from thy sole dominion like the god Of this new world; at whose sight all the stars Hide their diminished heads; to thee I call, But with no friendly voice, and add thy name, O sun, to tell thee how I hate thy beams* That bring to my remembrance from what state I fell, how glorious once above thy sphere; Till pride and worse ambition threw me down Warring* in heaven against heaven's matchless* king. Ah wherefore*? He deserved no such return* 188
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From me, whom he created what I was In that bright eminence*, and with his good Upbraided* none; nor was his service* hard. What could be less than to afford him praise*, The easiest recompense, and pay him thanks, How due*! Yet all his good proved ill in me, And wrought but malice*; lifted up so high I ‘sdained subjection*, and thought one step higher Would set me highest, and in a moment quit* The debt immense of endless gratitude. ………. O had his powerful destiny ordained Me some inferior angel, I had stood* Then happy; no unbounded hope had raised Ambition. Yet why not? Some other power As great might have aspired, and me though mean Drawn to his part; but other powers as great Fell not, but stand unshaken*, from within Or from without, to all temptations armed. ………. Me miserable*! which way shall I fly Infinite wrath, and infinite despair? Which way I fly is hell; myself am hell; And in the lowest deep a lower deep Still threatening to devour me opens wide, To which the hell I suffer seems a heaven. O then at last relent*: is there no place Left for repentance*, none for pardon* left? None left but by submission*; and that word Disdain forbids me, and my dread of shame Among the spirits beneath, whom I seduced With other promises and other vaunts* Than to submit, boasting* I could subdue* The omnipotent*. Ay me*, they little know How dearly I abide* that boast so vain, Under what torments inwardly I groan*; While they adore* me on the throne of hell, With diadem and scepter high advanced, The lower still I fall, only supreme In misery; such joy ambition finds. But say* I could repent and could obtain By act of grace my former state; how soon Would height recall high thoughts, how soon unsay What feigned* submission swore: ease would recant* Vows* made in pain, as violent and void*. For never can true reconcilement grow Where sounds of deadly hate have pierced* so deep; Which would but lead me to a worse relapse* And heavier fall: ………. So farewell hope, and with hope farewell fear, Farewell remorse! All good to me is lost; Evil, be thou* my good; by thee* at least
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Divided empire* with heaven's king I hold By thee, and more than half perhaps will govern; As man ere long, and this new world shall know.
grieved mâhnit, întristat full-blazing în plină strălucire/splendoare meridian the peak, zenith; noon much revolving with many thoughts revolving in his mind sighs suspine nd look’st look (2 person sg.) beams rays of light warring…against războindu-se/purtând război cu…, matchless unequalled, incomparable wherefore why return recompensă, răsplată eminence position of superiority, distinction, high rank upbraided to upbraid: a mustra, a dojeni his service serving him (i.e. God) to afford him praise a-i aduce/oferi laudă due cuvenit, datorat wrought but malice worked/produced only evil intent, the desire to do harm I ‘sdained [disdained] subjection: am dispreţuit supunerea to quit a părăsi, a abandona I had stood I would have stood unshaken neclintit miserable unhappy, depressed (nenorocit, nefericit) to relent to show pity, to become less severe or cruel repentance căinţă, părere de rău pardon iertare sumbission supunere (to submit: a se supune) vaunt laudă, preamărire de sine boasting to boast: a se lăuda to subdue to defeat and gain control (a supune, a subjuga) ay me (archaic) an expression of unhappiness (vai mie!) to abide a suporta (consecinţele) to groan a geme, a se văita, a suspina, a ofta to adore to worship (a preamări, a se închina la) say să zicem; închipuindu-mi că feigned prefăcut, simulat to recant a retracta, a se dezice de, a se lepăda de vow jurământ, legământ, făgăduială void empty pierced to pierce: a pătrunde relapse recădere thou you by thee by you empire stăpânire, putere

TEXT 3.7. John Milton, Paradise Lost (Book VII)
In his hand He took his golden compasses, prepared In God’s eternal store, to circumscribe This Universe, and all created things. One foot he centred and the other turned Round through the vast profundity obscure, And said, “Thus far extend, thus far thy bounds*; This be thy just circumference, O World.” Thus God the Heaven created, thus the Earth, Matter unformed and void. Darkness profound Covered the abyss, but on the watery calm His brooding* wings the Spirit of God outspread*, And vital virtue infused, and vital warmth, Throughout the fluid mass, but downward purged* The black, tartareous*, cold, infernal dregs*, Adverse to life; then founded, then conglobed* Like* things to like, the rest to several* place Disparted*, and between spun* out the air, And Earth, self-balanced, on her centre hung.
bounds limits, margins brooding covering perfectly to outspread a întinde, a desfăşura to purge a curăţi, a limpezi, a spăla, a purifica tartareous of the underworld, infernal (from Tartarus: Hades) dregs impurităţi, drojdii, rămăşiţe conglobed formed into a ball or a globe like asemănător; de aceeaşi natură several mai mulţi/multe; diferiţi, diferite to dispart a distribui spun to spin, spun: a ţese, a urzi

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a se încumeta forbid forbidden low humble. Queen of the Universe.8. producing every kind.Reader TEXT 3.) venturing to venture: a îndrăzni. Warmed by the Sun. do not believe Those rigid threats of death. Goddess humane. in the day Ye eat thereof*. Shall that be shut to Man which to the beast Is open? 2. participating* godlike* food? The Gods are first. then. modest thereof din ace(a)sta. Knowing both good and evil. and freely taste. a apuca Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 191 . shall perfectly be then Opened and cleared. And what are Gods. for this fair* Earth I see. John Milton. Why. that seem so clear Yet are but dim*. din el/ea (eat from the Tree of Knowledge) dim having weak or indistinct vision participating sharing godlike divine to proceed (from) to originate. to emerge fair beautiful to import a însemna to reach a întinde mâna. if all be his? Or is it envy? and can envy dwell In heavenly breasts? These. was this forbid*? Why but to awe? Why but to keep ye low* and ignorant. as they know. that Man may not become As they. I question it. yet both live And life more perfect have attained than Fate Meant me. 4. ye* shall not die. these and many more Causes import* your need of this fair fruit. your eyes. Paradise Lost (Book IX) 1. What can your knowledge hurt him. reach* then. and ye shall be like Gods. 3. that all from them proceeds*. by the Threatener? look on me. by venturing* higher than my lot. or this tree Impart against his will. How should ye? by the fruit? it gives you life To knowledge. and that advantage use On our belief. Me who have touched and tasted. Them nothing. His worshippers? He knows that. ye you (pl.

sălaş flaming brand sabia de foc/flăcări thronged (with dreadful faces) plină (de chipuri de temut) fiery în flăcări. Through Eden took their solitary way. Waved over by that flaming brand*. so late* their happy seat*. but wiped them soon. and Providence their guide. with wandering steps and slow. beheld (archaic. the gate With dreadful faces thronged* and fiery* arms: Some natural* tears they dropped. hand in hand. The world was all before them.9. care arde natural firesc 192 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . looking back. where to choose Their place of rest. beheld to behold. Paradise Lost (Book XII) They. literary): to look at so late până nu demult seat locaş. John Milton.Reader TEXT 3. They. all the eastern side beheld* Of Paradise.

Come to dinner when I please. politicos a great while a long time hitherto until this time. Let us never visit together. William Congreve. nor go to Hyde Park together the first Sunday in a new chariot*. because they are your acquaintance. dine in my dressing room when I’m out of humour*. To have my closet* inviolate*. Mirabell: Have you any more conditions to offer? Hitherto* your demands are pretty reasonable. the only oneto presume to dare (a îndrăzni) to ask leave to ask permission Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 193 . (…) fond affectionate. don’t let us be familiar or fond*. and choose conversation with regard only to my own taste. manierat. tender folks people chariot trăsură to provoke eyes and whispers to attract attention and provoke gossip (bârfă) strange distant. or to be intimate with fools. to write and receive letters. wherever I am. without interrogatories or wry faces* on your part. because they may be your relations*. And lastly.Reader UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE TEXT 4. and then never be seen there together again. The Way of the World Millamant: (…) Good Mirabell. abătut closet a small private room inviolate in which nobody intrudes sole only. and as well bred as if we were not married at all. to have no obligation upon me to converse with wits* that I don’t like. reserved well-bred binecrescut. which you must never presume* to approach without first asking leave*. to wear what I please. to be sole* empress of my tea table.1. Millamant: Trifles* – as liberty to pay and receive visits* to and from whom I please. as if we were proud of one another the first week. so far trifle fleac. you shall always knock at the door before you come in. bagatelă to pay…visits a face vizite wry faces grimase (to make wry faces: a strâmba din nas) wit a person who has the ability to say things that are both clever and amusing relation relative (rudă) out of humour prost dispus. nor kiss before folks*. let us be as strange as if we had been married a great while*. nor go to a play together. like my Lady Faddler and Sir Francis. without giving a reason. but let us be very strange* and well bred*. and ashamed of one another ever after. to provoke eyes and whispers*.

the poet of nature. a livra. above all writers. escroc.2. a furniza 194 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and please long. and that wittily*! But how hard to make a man appear a fool. which can operate but* upon small numbers. by the peculiarities* of studies or professions. transitory (trecător) progeny urmaşi. rogue pungaş. and therefore few only can judge how nearly* they are copied. ticălos. and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth. Shakespeare is. Samuel Johnson. fantezist awhile for a short period satiety the state of being too much filled or satisfied peculiarity particularitate but only transient temporary. at least above all modern writers. but just representations of general nature.Reader TEXT 4. His characters are not modified by the customs of particular places. variabil fanciful capricios. unpractised by the rest of the world. or by the accidents of transient* fashions or temporary opinions: they are the genuine progeny* of common humanity. măcelărire fineness eleganţă. In the writings of other poets a character is too often an individual: in those of Shakespeare it is commonly a species. manners moravuri nearly faithfully. perfecţiune stroke lovitură TEXT 4. lichea wittily in a witty manner (cu mult spirit) blockhead nătâng. such as the world will always supply* and observation will always find. John Dryden. descendenţi to supply a oferi. secătură. a blockhead*. The irregular* combinations of fanciful* invention may delight awhile* by that novelty of which the common satiety* of life sends us all in quest. His persons act and speak by the influence of those general passions and principles by which all minds are agitated and the whole system of life is continued in motion. and the fineness* of a stroke* that separates the head from the body. dobitoc. successfully irregular neuniform. A Discourse Concerning the Original and Progress of Satire How easy is it to call rogue* and villain*. and leaves it standing in its place. but the pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted. pungaş.3. nemernic opprobrious insulting betwixt between slovenly neglijent butchering căsăpire. or a knave* without using any of those opprobrious* terms! (…) There is (…) a vast difference betwixt* the slovenly* butchering* of a man. The Preface to Shakespeare Nothing can please many. the poet that holds up to his readers a faithful mirror of manners and of life. cap sec knave escroc. potlogar villain nemernic. Particular manners* may be known to few.

let slip* an opportunity put into his hands that would have made him absolute master of the lives. and in so familiar a manner as to appear wholly unmoved at all the scenes of blood and desolation which I had painted as the common effects of those destructive machines (…) As for himself. And he gave it for his opinion that whoever could make two ears of corn* or two blades of grass* to grow upon a spot of ground* where only one grew before would deserve better of mankind and do more essential service to his country than the whole race of politicians put together. and transcendentals*. where an enemy or some rival nation were not in case. wherein* they must be allowed to excel. He confined* the knowledge of governing within very narrow bounds*: to common sense and reason. entities. (…) I take* this defect among them to have risen from their ignorance. to the speedy* determination* of civil and criminal causes. great wisdom. so that among us would be little esteemed. when I happened to say there were several thousand books among us written upon the art of government. Jonathan Swift. and mathematics. unnecessary scruple. He could not tell what I meant by secrets of state. yet he would rather lose half his kingdom than be privy* to such a secret (…). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 195 . to justice and lenity*. whereof* in Europe we can have no conception. consisting only in morality. He professed both to abominate* and despise all mystery*. to the improvement of agriculture and all mechanical arts*. with some other obvious topics* which are not worth considering. But the last of these is wholly applied to what may be useful in life. The learning of this people is very defective. and esteem. He was amazed how so impotent and grovelling* an insect as I (these were his expressions) could entertain* such inhuman ideas. of strong parts. history. and almost adored by his subjects. abstractions. poetry. the liberties.4. Gulliver’s Travels (Book II.Reader TEXT 4. love. either in a prince or a minister. I could never drive* the least conception into their heads. they not having hitherto reduced politics into a science. and profound learning. as the more acute wits* of Europe have done. should from a nice*. chapter VII) The King was struck with horror* at the description I had given of those terrible engines* and the proposal I had made. refinement and intrigue. he protested* that although few things delighted him so much as new discoveries in art or in nature. For I remember very well. endued* with admirable talents for government. A strange effect of narrow principles and short views*! that a prince possessed of every quality which procures veneration. and the fortunes of his people. it gave him (directly contrary to my intention) a very mean opinion* of our understandings. And as to ideas. in a discourse one day with the King.

so. our manners. and our actions. subiect ear of corn spic de grâu blade of grass fir de iarbă spot of ground petec de pământ wherein in which mechanical arts meşteşuguri transcendentals categorii metafizice to drive (drove. they will dig with their claws for whole days to get them out. and activity. for fear their comrades should find out their treasure. and drive the female Yahoos to his kennel. each single one impatient* to have all to itself. which all could see in the rest.g. VII) He observed that I agreed* in every feature of my body with other Yahoos. I suppose acute wits spirite luminate (acute: pătrunzător. he found as near a resemblance in the disposition* of our minds. to restrict bound limit. (…) That. Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV. For he only meant to observe what parity* there was in our natures. they will instead of eating peaceably. a i se încredinţa (e. my master confessed he could find little or no resemblance between the Yahoos of that country and those in ours. and when part of these stones are fixed in the earth. speed. than any of the rest. whose employment was to lick* his masters feet and posteriors. He said the Yahoos were known to hate one another more than they did any different species of animals. a fi iniţiat în. except where it was to my real disadvantage in point of* strength. a încredinţa to be privy to a fi făcut părtaş la.Reader struck with horror cuprins de groază engines maşini (piese de artilerie) grovelling to grovel: to crawl. government. as sometimes happens. as in fear or humility (a se târî) to entertain (an idea) a nutri (o idee) to protest a declara. a face să priceapă TEXT 4.5. a asigura. in some fields of his country. from the representation I had given him of our lives. un secret) short views concepţii înguste endued înzestrat nice fastidious. excessively particular about details (pretenţios. boundary (hotar) lenity tolerance (îngăduinţă) speedy quick. whereof the Yahoos are violently fond*. and some other particulars* where Nature had no part*. For. and therefore* to protect himself. That this leader had usually a favorite as like himself as he could get. manufactures*. keeps always near the 196 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . there are certain shining stones of several colors. Jonathan Swift. but not in themselves. and the like. and that the dissensions of those brutes in his country were owing to the same cause with ours. if (said he) you throw among five Yahoos as much food as would be sufficient for fifty. and the reason usually assigned* was the odiousness* of their own shapes. to dislike intensely mystery urzeli tainice to confine to limit. încheiere (a unei cauze juridice) topic temă. a scăpa din mână (o ocazie) I take I think. and mischievous* in disposition. for which he was known and then rewarded with a piece of ass’s flesh*. (…) As to learning. This favorite is hated by the whole herd. fall together by ears*. driven) an idea into one’s head a băga în cap. perspicace) mean opinion părere nefavorabilă to abominate to detest. as I had described them. but still looking round with great caution. Ch. without delay determination rezolvare. He had heard indeed some curious Houyhnhnms observe that in most herds* there was a sort of ruling* Yahoo (as among us there is generally some leading or principal stag* in a park*) who was always more deformed in body. arts. and hide them by heaps* in their kennels*. and carry them away. greu de mulţumit) whereof of which to let slip (an opportunity) a lăsa să-i scape. the shortness of my claws*. (…) But he now found he had been mistaken.

Reader

person of his leader. (…) But how far this might be applicable to our courts and favorites, and ministers of state, my master said I could best determine. (…) My master likewise* mentioned another quality, which his servants had discovered in several Yahoos, and to him was wholly unaccountable*. He said, a fancy* would sometimes take a Yahoo, to retire into a corner, to lie down and howl*, and groan*, and spurn* away all that came near him, although he were young and fat, and wanted* neither food nor water; nor did the servants imagine what could possibly ail* him. And the only remedy they found was to set* him to hard work*, after which he would infallibly* come to himself*. To this I was silent out of partiality* to my own kind*; yet here I could plainly discover the true seeds* of spleen*, which only seizes on* the lazy, the luxurious, and the rich (…). His Honor had farther observed, that a female Yahoo would often stand behind a bank* or a bush*, to gaze* on the young males passing by, and then appear, and hide, using many antic* gestures and grimaces; at which time it was observed, that she had a most offensive* smell; and when any of the males advanced, would slowly retire, looking back, and with a counterfeit* show of fear, run off into some convenient place where she knew the male would follow her. At other times, if a female stranger came along them, three or four of her own sex would get about her, and stare* and chatter*, and grin*, and smell her all over; and then turn off with gestures that seemed to express contempt and disdain.
I agreed I corresponded in point of în ceea ce priveşte claws gheare particulars details no part no role, no contribution near close disposition predispoziţie, înclinare to assign (a reason) to give, to attribute (a reason) odiousness hidoşenie they will fall together by ears se vor lua la bătaie impatient zorit, grăbit whereof of which to be fond of a fi amator, a-i plăcea mult by heaps în grămezi kennel culcuş, vizuină manufacture meşteşuguri parity corespondenţă, asemănare, analogie herd cireadă ruling dominant, conducător stag cerb park parc cinegetic mischievous răutăcios, rău intenţionat, pus pe rele to lick a linge ass’s flesh carne de măgar therefore that is why likewise also unaccountable inexplicable a fancy would sometimes take a Yahoo din când în când i se năzare câte unui Yahoo to howl a urla to groan a geme to spurn (away) a îndepărta, a refuza, a alunga to want a duce lipsă de to ail a durea, a deranja to set (somebody) to work a pune la muncă infallibly negreşit he would come to himself îşi revenea, îşi venea în fire partiality părtinire, slăbiciune, înclinaţie my own kind cei de-un neam cu mine seeds seminţe (fig.: izvor, cauză) spleen ipohondrie, melancolie seizes on se abate asupra, îi cuprinde pe bank movilă bush tufiş to gaze to look long and fixedly antic grotesque offensive unpleasant, disgusting counterfeit simulated; a counterfeit show of fear: prefăcânduse că îi este teamă to stare a se holba to chatter a flecări to grin a rânji

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TEXT 4.6. Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV, chapter VIII)
As these noble Houyhnhnms are endowed by Nature with a general disposition to all virtues, and have no conceptions or ideas of what is evil in a rational creature; so their grand* maxim is to cultivate reason, and to be wholly governed by it. (…) Friendship and benevolence are the two principal virtues among the Houyhnhnms; and these not confined to particular objects, but universal to the whole race. For a stranger from the remotest* part is equally treated with the nearest neighbour, and wherever he goes, looks upon himself* as at home. They preserve decency and civility* in the highest degrees, but are altogether ignorant of ceremony*. They have no fondness* for their colts or foals*; but the care they take in educating them proceeds* entirely from the dictates of reason. And I observed my master to show the same affection to his neighbour’s issue* that he had for his own. They will have that* Nature teaches them to love the whole species, and it is reason only that makes a distinction of persons, where there is a superior degree of virtue. When the matron* Houyhnhnms have produced one of each sex, they no longer accompany* with their consorts, except they lose one of their issue by some casualty*, which very seldom* happens; but in such a case they meet again; or when the like accident* befalls* a person whose wife is past bearing*, some other couple bestows* on him one of their own colts, and then go together* a second time, until the mother be pregnant*. This caution* is necessary to prevent the country from being overburdened with numbers*. But the race of inferior Houyhnhnms bred up to be servants is not so strictly limited upon this article*; these are allowed to produce* three of each sex, to be domestics* in the noble families. Courtship, love, presents*, jointures*, settlements*, have no place in their thoughts, or terms whereby* to express them in their language. The young couple meet and are joined, merely because it is the determination* of their parents and friends; it is what they see done every day; and they look upon it as one of necessary actions in a reasonable being. But the violation* of marriage, or any other unchastity* was never heard of; and the married pair pass their lives with the same friendship and mutual benevolence that they bear to all others of the same species who come in their way, without jealousy, fondness, quarreling*, or discontent*. Temperance*, industry*, exercise*, and cleanliness* are the lessons equally enjoined* to the young ones of both sexes; and my master thought it monstrous in us to give the females a different kind of education from the males, except in some articles of domestic management (…).

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grand principal, capital, supreme remote distant, far away looks upon himself considers himself civility amabilitate, curtenie, politeţe, bună creştere ceremony protocol, etichetă fondness duioşie, afecţiune, dragoste colt, foal mânz to proceed (from) to come from, to originate in (a izvorî) issue odrasle, progenituri, urmaşi they will have that they say that matron mamă de familie to acompany (with) a se împreuna casualty accident, nenorocire, năpastă seldom rarely the like accident o năpastă de felul acesta to befall (befell, befallen) a se abate asupra is past bearing nu mai poate zămisli to bestow to give, to offer they go together se împreunează pregnant grea, însărcinată caution măsură de prevedere overburdened with numbers overpopulated upon this article în această privinţă, la acest capitol to produce a zămisli domestic servitor present dar, cadou jointure averea cuvenită soţiei după moartea soţului settlement contract whereby by which determination decision violation necinstire unchastity infidelitate quarreling ceartă discontent nemulţumire temperance cumpătare industry hărnicie exercise exerciţii fizice cleanliness curăţenie enjoined imposed, prescribed

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UNIT 5 THE AGE OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT: THE RISE OF THE NOVEL
TEXT 5.1. Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe
It was now that I began sensibly* to feel how much more happy this life I now led was, with all its miserable circumstances, than the wicked*, cursed*, abominable* life I led all the past part of my days. And now I changed both my sorrows and my joys; my very desires altered*, my affections changed their gusts*, and my delights were perfectly new from what they were at my first coming, or indeed for the two years past. Before, as I walked about, either on my hunting or for viewing the country, the anguish* of my soul at my condition would break out* upon me on a sudden*, and my very heart would die within me to think of the woods, the mountains, the deserts I was in, and how I was a prisoner locked up with the eternal bars* and bolts* of the ocean, in an uninhabited wilderness, without redemption*. In the midst* of the greatest composures* of my mind, this would break out upon me like a storm, and make me wring* my hands like a child. (…). But now I began to exercise myself with new thoughts. I daily read the Word of God, and applied all the comforts* of it to my present state. One morning, being very sad, I opened the Bible upon these words: “I will never, never leave thee*, nor forsake* thee.” Immediately it occurred* to me that these words were to me. Why else* should they be directed in such a manner, just at the moment when I was mourning over my condition as one forsaken of* God and Man? (…) From this moment I began to conclude in my mind that it was possible for me to be more happy in this forsaken, solitary condition than it was probable I should have ever been I any other particular state in the world; and with this thought I was going to give thanks to God for bringing me to this place.
sensibly în mod apreciabil, destul de mult wicked păcătos cursed nelegiuit, ticălos abominable odios to alter to change gust răbufnire, explozie, izbucnire anguish pain, misery, agony to break out a se dezlănţui, a izbucni on a sudden suddenly, abruptly bars gratii, zăbrele bolt zăvor redemption mântuire, izbăvire, salvare midst middle composure linişte, calm, cumpăt, stăpânire de sine to wring (wrung) a frânge; to wring one’s hands: a-şi frânge mâinile de durere comfort mângâiere, consolare, încurajare thee you to forsake (forsook, forsaken) to abandon to occur (to someone) a-i veni în minte, a-i trece prin gând why else? altfel de ce? forsaken of forsaken by

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dificil paste cocă misshapen diform fell in to fall. ugly things I made. to temper* it. When I saw them clear red. one upon another. a se desprinde clay lut. or rather laugh at me. I let them stand in that heat about five or six hours(…). when I went to put it out* after I had done with it. how many cracked* by the over-violent heat of the sun. and bear* the fire. and I had hardly patience to stay till they were cold before I set one upon the fire again with some water in it to boil me some meat. yet I made several smaller things with better success – such as little round pots. (fell. or glazing* them with lead*. which was to get an earthen pot to hold what was liquid. vas to miscarry a da greş design intenţie pot vas.Reader TEXT 5. to dig* it.. I found a broken piece of one of my earthenware vessels* in the fire burned as hard as a stone. and the heat of the sun baked* them strangely hard*. in a word how. and said to myself that certainly they might be made to burn whole if they would burn broken. making a pretty large fire for cooking my meat. and. how many of them fell in*. which it did admirably well. a frământa. No joy at a thing of so mean a nature* was ever equal to mine when I found I had made an earthen pot that would bear the fire. flat dishes*. but I placed three large pipkins and two or three pots in a pile.2. It happened after some time. fallen) in: a se prăbuşi. (fell. misshapen*. with a great heap of embers* under them. and red as a tile*. to bring it home and work it. which none of these could do. pitchers*. I was agreeably surprised to see it. such as the potters* burn in. Robinson Crusoe It would make the reader pity* me. In the morning I had three very good – I will not say handsome* – pipkins and two other earthen pots as hard burned as could be desired (…). But all this would not answer my end*. de pământ jar oală. I had no notion of a kiln*. the clay* not being stiff* enough to bear its own weight*. This set me to studying how to order* my fire. after having laboured hard to find the clay. anevoios. oală Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 201 . and observed that they did not crack at all*. and any things my hand turned to*. (…) Though I miscarried* so much in my design* for large pots*. being set out too hastily*. fallen) out: a se desface. a prelucra above more than earthen de lut. what odd. argilă stiff tare weight to bear its own weight: să reziste la propria greutate to crack a crăpa set out too hastily expuse prea devreme with only removing doar ce le-am mişcat to dig. and how many fell out*. so as to make it burn me some pots. and pipkins*. to tell how many awkward* ways I took to raise this paste*. though I had some lead to do it with. Daniel Defoe. dug a săpa to temper a amesteca. I could not make above* two large earthen* ugly things – I cannot call them jars* – in about two months’ labour. and how many fell in pieces with only removing* as well before as after they were dried. I plied the fire* with fresh fuel round the outside and upon the top till I saw the pots in the inside red-hot quite through*. and placed my firewood* all round it. a cădea fell out to fall. to pity a căina awkward incomod.

my dear father. B_. plin de viaţă) height culme. did I say! […] I know not how it came. I imagine. placă de ceramică how to order the fire cum să potrivesc focul kiln cuptor potter olar to glaze a smălţui lead plumb firewood lemn de foc embers jăratec I plied the fire am întreţinut focul quite through cu totul. intenţie to bear (bore. But to be sure*. nor when it began. arătos a thing of so mean a nature un lucru atât de mărunt TEXT 5. has greatly affected me. forgive your poor daughter! How am I grieved* to find this trial so severe* upon me. and before I knew what was the matter. Preface to Clarissa All the letters are written while the hearts of the writers must be supposed to be wholly engaged in their subjects (the events at the time dubious*): so that they abound not only with critical situations. but it has crept*. a învinge. nenorocire pangs mâhnire. forgive me! but I found. O my unguarded* youth. and of so much honour too. apogeu distress nefericire. […] O my dear parents. a se pune pe lucru to bake a coace strangely hard neobişnuit de tare end ţel. crept. and so it is: but love.4. unanimated style of a person relating difficulties and dangers surmounted*. dubious uncertain. doubtful lively vivid (însufleţit. în întregime at all deloc handsome frumos. a depăşi) TEXT 5. born) a rezista. will ye* not in some 202 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . […] Forgive. Samuel Richardson. but with what may be called instantaneous descriptions and reflections (…). farfurie pitcher ulcior ulcea pipkin gavanos to turn to a se apuca de lucru. it looked like love. a ţine la to put out (the fire) a stinge (focul) earthenware vessels vase de lut tile ţiglă. chinuri womb pântece. to my grief*. upon me. in which he confesses his affection for her. like a thief. and tender years*. She seems taken by surprise by her own feelings. before. punct culminant. For here plainly* does he confess his great value for me. Much more lively* and affecting must be the style of those who write in the height* of a present distress*. however. I beseech* you. than the dry*. the womb of fate: incertitudinea sorţii dry sec. Samuel Richardson. that my heart was too partial* in his favour. so much affection. nay*. This was a good fortune. and accounts for his rigorous* behaviour to me. the mind tortured by the pangs* of uncertainty (the events then hidden in the womb* of fate). can be. I must own* to you.Reader dish blid. I am quite overcome*. when I expected some new plot*. narrative. that I shall never be able to think of any body in the world but him! Presumption*! you will say. but now. scop.] This letter.3. is not a voluntary thing – Love. to find him capable of so much openness. durere. neutru to surmount to overcome (a birui. Pamela [Pamela receives a letter from Mr. I had no reason to expect.

) couldst thou could you serve how couldst thou serve me thus? Cum ai putut să te porţi astfel? notice to give notice: a preveni. before summons* came. when I get home. a implora grieved amărât. differing from comedy. însemnare TEXT 5.5. îndrăzneală crept to creep (crept): a se strecura. a înştiinţa mischief neajuns. In the diction. necaz wert were inconsiderately (în mod) nesocotit. nechibzuit thyself yourself thy poor mistress biata ta stăpână (not) in the least câtuşi de puţin. a comic romance* is a comic epic poem* in prose. unless* in writings of the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 203 . by preserving the ludicrous* instead of the sublime. and resignation to the Divine Will. of inferior manners. torn) out a smulge. or tear* it out of my writing. and introducing a greater variety of characters.e. în consecinţă to tear (tore. I hope. a copleşi to be sure cu siguranţă to own a mărturisi presumption cutezanţă. în mod clar rigorous aspru.Reader measure excuse me? I never before knew. so in the other they are light* and ridiculous: it differs in its characters by introducing persons of inferior rank. only dangerous attacks! After all. O my treacherous*. But though we have sometimes admitted this in our diction. sever grief durere. we have carefully excluded it from our sentiments and characters.] plot uneltire. for there it is never properly introduced. as I thought. will enable me to get over this heavy trial. perfidious traitor*! deservest* thou to smart. I think. without ever consulting thy poor mistress* in the least*! But thy punishment will be the first and the greatest: and well. and when likewise* thou hadst* so well maintained thy post* against the most violent and avowed*.my heart] fully deserve to suffer summons chemare. as the serious epic from tragedy: its action being more extended and comprehensive*. in its sentiments and diction*. a se furişa to beseech (besought) a ruga cu stăruinţă. I must either not show you this confession of my weakness.) treacherous trădător (adj. treacherous heart! How couldst thou serve* me thus! And give no notice* to me of the mischiefs* thou wert* about to bring upon me! How couldst thou thus inconsiderately* give thyself* up to the proud invader. mai mult chiar to overcome a depăşi. [Memorandum*. It differs from the serious romance in its fable* and action. and to one too. for giving up so weakly. intrigă plainly în mod deschis. nicidecum traitor trădător (noun) deservest well …deservest thou to smart: you [i. in this. întristat. and therefore*. Yet. mâhnit severe trial încercare grea unguarded imprudent tender years vârstă fragedă ye you (pl. Joseph Andrews (Preface) Now. whereas the grave romance sets the highest* before us: lastly. a rupe memorandum notă. that as in the one these are grave and solemn. to consider of this. mâhnire partial to având o slăbiciune pentru nay (literary) ba mai mult. thy whole self. and consequently. Henry Fielding. avertizare likewise de asemenea hadst (you) had thou hadst so well maintained thy post you put up resistance successfully avowed făţiş therefore aşadar. of which many instances will occur in these works […]. who had used me so hardly. burlesque itself may be sometimes admitted. containing a much larger circle of incidents. and the benefits of your good lesson and examples. I could have no notion of what it was to be so affected! But prayer.

what Caricatura is in painting. or e converso*. Burlesque is in writing. by concealing* our vices under an appearance of their opposite virtues. if we examine it. vanity or hypocrisy: for as vanity puts us on affecting false characters*. for as the latter is ever* the exhibition* of what is monstrous and unnatural. that affectation doth* not imply an absolute negation of those qualities which are affected. and all distortions and exaggerations whatever are within its proper province*. so it is in the latter infinitely on the side of the writer. with those performances which the Italians call Caricatura. as in appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest*. for to discover any one to be the exact reverse of what he affects. yet it sits less awkwardly* on him than on the avaricious man. where we shall find the true excellence of the former to consist in the exactest copying of nature.Reader burlesque kind. affectation proceeds from one of these two causes. any liberty which the painter hath* taken with the features of that alma mater*. for the Monstrous is much easier to paint than describe. […] Now. so they are as clearly distinct in their operations: for indeed. and the Ridiculous to describe than paint. than to find him a little deficient in the quality he desires the reputation of. yet. whereas in the Caricatura we allow all licence* – its aim is to exhibit monsters. no two species of writing can differ more widely than the comic and the burlesque. and. Indeed. which that of the hypocrite hath. […] The only source of the true Ridiculous (as it appears to me) is affectation. than when from vanity. for though the vain man is not what he would appear. is more surprising. the affectation which arises from vanity is nearer to truth than the other. it be nearly allied to deceit*. when it proceeds from hypocrisy. as they proceed* from very different motives. therefore. though. to the degree he would be thought to have it. and in the same manner the comic writer and painter correlate to each other. it partakes* of the nature of ostentation: for instance. arises from the surprising absurdity. and where our delight. that. which always strikes* the reader with surprise and pleasure. yet when it comes from vanity only. which this is not intended to be. in so much that a judicious eye instantly rejects anything outré*. 204 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . so in the former we should ever confine* ourselves strictly to nature. From the discovery of this affectation arises the Ridiculous. […] Let us examine the works of a comic history painter. Now. as in the former the painter seems to have the advantage. in order to purchase* applause. and consequently more ridiculous. And though these two causes are often confounded (for there is some difficulty in distinguishing them). not men. And here I shall observe. the affectation of liberality* in a vain* man differs visibly from the same affectation in the avaricious. and that in a higher and stronger degree when the affectation arises from hypocrisy. as it hath not that violent repugnancy* of nature to struggle with. who is the very reverse of what he would seem to be. It may be likewise noted. from the just* imitation of which will flow all the pleasure we can this way convey to a sensible* reader. or hath not the virtue he affects. so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure*.

cu bun simţ) outré (French) exaggerated hath has alma mater (Latin) the nourishing mother. intrigă light uşor highest sets the highest before us aduce în faţa ochilor pe cei de rang superior diction stil ludicrous grotesc unless except ever always exhibition display (expunere) appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest atribuirea obiceiurilor din lumea bună unor oameni din popor e converso (Italian)and viceversa to confine oneself to a se limita la just faithful. cu stângăcie. it is then that these unfortunate circumstances.” Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 205 . putting on a flattering mask to purchase to obtain censure so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure tot astfel ipocrizia ne îndeamnă/ne face să ne străduim a evita critica to conceal to hide to proceed from to come/to emerge from repugnancy incompatibility. but affectation appears to me the only true source of the Ridiculous. But for not being what they would be thought*. […] Great vices are the proper objects of our detestation. / Ci de-a nu fi ceea ce vrea să pară. tend* only to raise our mirth*. contradiction doth does deceit înşelătorie it partakes of se înrudeşte cu. sferă affecting false characters pretending to be in a way that one is not.Reader […] Much less are natural imperfections the objects of derision. smaller faults. şchiopătat to display to show to tend a tinde mirth laughter thought the lines quoted by Fielding are from Alexander Pope’s Essay on Criticism (1711): “Nimeni nu este vinovat de a fi ceea ce e. dărnicie) vain vanitos awkwardly stângaci. fig. it sits less awkwardly on him than: îi şade mai puţin rău decât strikes the reader with surprise and pleasure îi oferă cititorului plăcerea surprizei applause when ugliness aims at the applause of beauty: când urâtul/urâţenia aspiră la aplauzele meritate de frumuseţe lameness şchiopătare. or lameness* endeavours to display* agility. comic romance roman comic comic epic poem poem eroicomic comprehensive cuprinzător fable subiect.: the primary source licence liberty province domeniu. The poet carries this very far: None are for being what they are in fault. of our pity. but when ugliness aims at the applause* of beauty. exact sensible endowed with common sense (cu judecată. face parte din liberality generosity (mărinimie. which at first moved our compassion.

– and at the same time. on my conscience. to annoy ungracious răutăcios. or in any of the planets […] than in this vile*. brought forth born scurvy păcătos. as you observe. yet with all the good temper* in the world I affirm it of her that in every stage of my life. remarcabil good temper voie bună turn cotitură to get at (somebody) to irritate. a reuşi public charges însărcinare. and though I will not wrong her by saying she has ever made me feel the weight* of any great or signal* evil. as far and as often too as any writer in Great-Britain. Tristram Shandy (Vol. the ungracious* Duchess has pelted* me with a set of as pitiful* misadventures* and cross* accidents as ever small HERO sustained.Reader TEXT 5. with reverence be it spoken*. Laurence Sterne. yet I constantly take care to order affairs so. 1718 […] was I Tristram Shandy. Tristram Shandy (Vol I. not for want of penetration* in him. Chapter V) On the fifth day of November. abject vile ticălos with reverence be it spoken fie spus cu tot respectul shreds zdrenţe clippings resturi. I can truly say that from the first hour I drew my breath into it […] I have been the continual sport* of what the world calls Fortune. povară signal însemnat. and that I fly off* from what I am about. Gentleman. I take to be made up of the shreds* and clippings* of the rest. and reconciled. as in my all digressions (one only excepted) there is a master-stroke* of digressive skill. – not but the planet is well enough*.7. or expected indeed. in a digression. Laurence Sterne. and it is progressive too. brought forth* into this scurvy* and disastrous world of ours. the merit of which has all along. which were thought to be at variance* with each other. which. and at every turn* and corner where she could get* fairly at me. rămăşiţe not but the planet is well enough nu că n-ar fi bună planeta provided a man could be born to a great title cu condiţia să te naşti cu un titlu însemnat estate avere to contrive a o brodi. I fear. or could any how contrive* to be called up to public charges* and employments* of dignity or power – but that is not my case […]. Chapter XXII) For in this long digression which I was accidentally led into. dirty planet of ours. nefericit TEXT 5. […] 206 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a izbuti. […] The machinery* of my work is of a species by itself. a asalta pitiful jalnic misadventure nenorocire cross potrivnic. – and it is this: That though my digressions are all fair*. two contrary motions are introduced into it. lipsit de cordialitate/amabilitate to pelt a bombarda. but because it is an excellence seldom* looked for. my work is digressive. been overlooked* by my reader. provided a man could be born in it to a great title* or to a great estate*. răspundere publică employment slujbă sport jucărie weight greutate. I wish I had been born in the Moon. In a word.I.6. that my main business does not stand still in my absence.

bids* All hail*. then there is an end of his digression. it shall be kept a-going these forty years. All the dexterity* is in the good cookery* and management of them. a încâlci one wheel within another cu rotiţele îmbucându-se una întralta good spirits voie bună Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 207 . that the whole machine. are the sunshine. master-stroke mişcare măiestrită skill meşteşug to overlook a-i scăpa. sadea to fly off a-şi lua zborul machinery mecanism at variance potrivnic. – one cold eternal winter would reign* in every page of it. – take them out of this book for instance. This is vile work*. the soul of reading. – and. artă culinară distress stare jalnică pitiable vrednic de milă to stand stock-still a încremeni.Reader Digressions. a sta pe loc vile work ticăloasă treabă adventitious întâmplător to involve a încurca. cum trebuie. and forbids the appetite to fail. has been kept agoing. in this matter. what’s more. one wheel within another*. so as to be not only for the advantage of the reader. For which reason. but also of the author. he steps forth* like a bridegroom*. you see. is truly pitiable*: For. from that moment. if he begins a digression. în contradicţie to reign a domni to step forth a păşi bridegroom mire to bid (bade. I have constructed the main work and the adventitious* parts of it with such intersections. you might as well take the book along with them. I observe. brings in variety. incontestably. whose distress*. slavă! dexterity îndemânare cookery gătit. and have so complicated and involved* the digressive and progressive movements. – they are the life. a trece cu vederea for want of penetration din pricina lipsei de pătrundere/înţelegere seldom arareori fair fără cusur. in general. if it pleases the fountain of health to bless me so long with life and good spirits*. and if he goes on with his main work. his whole work stands stock-still*. restore them to the writer. from the beginning of this. bidden) a ura all hail trăiască!.

chid: to rebuke. Go. a mustra) wandering rătăcire to relieve to bring alleviation (a uşura. to all the country dear. a alina. or seek for power. His house was known to all the vagrant* train*. but his sad emblem now. And passing rich* with forty pounds* a year. He chid* their wanderings*. fiind considerat bogat pound liră remote far away. Go! if the peaceful cot* your praises share. Far other aims his heart had learned to prize*. Or hers. Unpracticed he to fawn*. cerşetor train alai. Oliver Goldsmith. look within. By doctrines fashioned* to the varying hour. modelat.1.Reader UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY TEXT 6. a mângâia) TEXT 6. George Crabbe. If peace be his – that drooping* weary* sire*. More skilled to raise the wretched* than to rise. The Deserted Village A man he was. Whom the smooth* stream and smoother sonnet please. devout (evlavios. The Village Ye* gentle* souls who dream of rural ease*. cortegiu şir chid to chide. that offspring* round their feeble* fire. hoinar. a aprecia the wretched cei sărmani/nenorociţi vagrant vagabond. to scold (a dojeni. he climbed the loftiest bough*. passing rich trecând drept bogat. cucernic) e’er ever to fawn to seek attention and admiration by flattering (a se ploconi.2. but relieved* their pain: The long-remembered beggar was his guest. whose age Can with no cares except his own engage. Nor e’er* had changed. and ask if peace be there. Or theirs. Remote* from towns he ran his godly* race. the matron* pale. propped* on that rude* staff*. looks up to see The bare arms* broken from the withering* tree On which. Then his first joy. distant godly pious. a boy. a linguşi) fashioned potrivit. nor wished to change his place. whose trembling hand Turns on the wretched* hearth* the expiring* brand*! (…) (…) yonder* see that hoary swain*. Who. 208 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . croit to prize a preţui. Whose beard descending swept his aged breast.

) gentle nobil. through the breast Infuses every tenderness. generos ease tihnă. James Thomson. and as high: Devotion. What wonder then that health and virtue. should most abound And least be threatened in the fields and groves*? draught înghiţitură. gifts That can alone make sweet the bitter draught* That life holds to all. the large ambitious wish To make them blest. the noble scorn* Of tyrant pride*. losing vitality (care se usucă) loftiest bough ramura cea mai înaltă TEXT 6. to excite swelling expanding rapture ecstasy. pace smooth calm. and far Beyond dim earth exalts* the swelling* thought. dumbravă Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 209 . (…) The sympathies of love and friendship dear. (…) As fast the correspondent passions rise. to elevate. The Task (1785) God made the country. As varied. coarse. simple. With all the social offspring of the heart*. disdain (dispreţ) tyrant pride the arrogance of arbitrary or unjust power the social offspring of the heart the community. sprijinit. The Seasons (from Autumn) He comes! he comes! in every breeze the Power Of Philosophic Melancholy comes! (…) O’er* all the soul his sacred influence breathes. and man made the town. cămin expiring dying (care se stinge) brand tăciune yonder (poetic) there hoary swain săteanul cărunt/nins/venerabil propped proptit. jalnic. părinte offspring vlăstar. ecstatic joy unconfined unlimited chief most important suffering worth men of merit and virtue who suffer scorn contempt. rezemat rude rudimentary. to stimulate.3. slab matron mamă de familie wretched biet.4. sorbitură grove crâng. încovoiat weary exhausted (istovit) sire (poetic) tată. o’er over to exalt to raise. ales. urmaş feeble plăpând. liniştit cot căsuţă drooping aplecat. the sigh for suffering worth* Lost in obscurity. whom the heart feels as a family TEXT 6. chief*. raised To rapture* and divine astonishment. The love of Nature. linişte. nenorocit hearth vatră. Of human race. Inflames imagination. lacking adornments staff toiag bare arms ramurile/crengile desfrunzite withering decaying.Reader ye you (pl. William Cowper. unconfined*. and.

piping* loud. cuminte. Into the dangerous world I leapt*. I’ll tell thee. Like a fiend* hid* in a cloud. Gave thee clothing of delight. wooly* bright. to groan a geme. Gave thee such a tender voice. I’ll tell thee: He is called by thy* name. Making all the vales rejoice*! Little Lamb. For he calls himself a Lamb: He is meek*. Striving against my swaddling bands*. te-a poftit să te hrăneşti o’er over mead meadow (pajişte. naked. I thought best To sulk* upon my mother’s breast. a se arunca piping to pipe: to utter something in a high and thin voice fiend demon hid hidden swaddling bands scutece bound to bind. who made thee? Dost thou know who made thee? Little Lamb. my father wept*.5. exhausted to sulk to be silent and resentful a se bosumfla. who made thee who made you dost thou know do you know bid thee feed ţi-a oferit hrană. leapt: a sări. Helpless. By the stream and o’er* the mead*. God bless thee. gentle and uncomplaining (blând. a înlănţui.Reader TEXT 6. Struggling in my father’s hands.The Lamb (from Songs of Innocence) Little Lamb who made thee*? Dost thou know* who made thee? Gave thee life. He became a little child: I a child and thou a lamb. Little Lamb. We are called by his name. a fi supărat/îmbufnat 210 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Little Lamb. bound: a lega strâns. Bound* and weary*. Infant Sorrow (from Songs of Experience) My mother groaned*. and he is mild*. Softest clothing. not violent (blajin. a suspina wept to weep (wept): a plânge leapt to leap. and bid thee feed*. luncă) wooly made of or feeling like wool (lânos) to rejoice to feel or show great joy thy your meek very quiet. God bless thee. supus) mild gentle. a închide weary tired.6. Little Lamb. William Blake. William Blake. a ţâşni. îngăduitor) TEXT 6.

And then go home to bed. a ţopăi to echo a răsuna Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 211 . go and play till the light fades away*. And tomb-stones* where flowers should be. iarbă neagră) TEXT 6.” The little ones leaped* and shouted and laughed And all the hills echoed*. And Priests in black gowns* were walking their rounds*. a sălta. well. And the dews* of night arise.Reader TEXT 6. midst middle ‘Thou shalt not’ ‘You shall not’ (the interdictory formula beginning the ten commandments in the Bible) writ written bore to bear. And I saw it was filled with graves*. in the sky the little birds fly. green pajişte verde at rest calm. the sun is gone down. for it is yet day. and let us away* Till the morning appears in the skies. bore. William Blake. And saw what I never had seen: A Chapel was built in the midst*. The Garden of Love (from Songs of Experience) I went to the Garden of Love. That so many sweet flowers bore*. And ‘Thou shalt not’* writ* over the door. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Innocence) When the voices of children are heard on the green*. And laughing is heard on the hill.8. come leave off play. robă walking their rounds făcându-şi rondul binding to bind. Where I used to play on the green. “Then come home my children. Come. My heart is at rest* within my breast. bound: to tie briar a wild bush with branches that have thorns (măceş. And the hills are all covered with sheep. at ease dew rouă let us away să megrem to fade away to die.7. And we cannot go to sleep. And the gates of the Chapel were shut. tranquil. William Blake. Besides. So I turned to the Garden of Love. And every thing else is still. let us play. to disappear to leap (leaped/leapt) a sări. no. And binding* with briars* my joys and desires.” “No. borne: to give birth to grave mormânt tomb-stone piatră funerară gown mantie.” “Well.

Then down a green plain leaping. whisperings şoapte. was shaved: so I said “Hush*. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Experience) When the voices of children are heard on the green And whisperings* are in the dale*. Tom. Your spring and your day are wasted* in play. never mind it. Then naked and white. You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair. a irosi TEXT 6. Were all of them locked up in coffins* of black. and we rose* in the dark. The days of my youth rise fresh in my mind. William Blake. As Tom was a-sleeping. and in soot* I sleep. they need not fear harm. My face turns green* and pale. all their bags left behind. they run. So if all do their duty.9. vâlcea my face turns green as in “green with envy” to waste a pierde. He'd have God for his father and never want* joy. and shine in the Sun. And got with our bags and our brushes to work. freamăt dale vale. And your winter and night in disguise. weep. Joe. Then come home. Tom was happy and warm. They rise upon clouds. who cried when his head That curled* like a lamb’s back. And by* came an Angel who had a bright key. my children. Though the morning was cold. And my father sold* me while yet my tongue Could scarcely cry “weep*. William Blake. and that very night. There’s little Tom Dacre. foşnet. Dick. and sport* in the wind. he had such a sight*!– That thousands of sweepers. if he'd be a good boy. the sun is gone down. And wash in a river. Ned and Jack. laughing. 212 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .Reader TEXT 6. weep!” So your chimneys I sweep. weep. And so Tom awoke.” And so he was quiet. And the dews of night arise.10. for when your head's bare. The Chimney Sweeper* (from Songs of Innocence) When my mother died I was very young. And he opened the coffins and set them all free. And the Angel told Tom.

risen): a se scula. these flowers of London town! Seated* in companies they sit with radiance* all their own*. weep!” in notes of woe*! “Where are thy* father and mother? say*?” “They are both gone up to church to pray.Reader chimney sweeper coşar. Who make up a Heaven of our misery*. potoleşte-te. Because I was happy upon the heath*. And smiled among the winter’s snow. Till into the high dome* of Paul’s* they like Thames’ waters flow. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Innocence) ‘Twas* on a Holy Thursday*. Beneath them sit the aged men. They think they have done me no injury*.12. coşciug by aproape. Then cherish* pity. And taught me to sing the notes of woe. sold: a vinde (the boy’s father has put him to work to bring money in the family) weep the boy is so young that he could scarcely cry “sweep!” )to advertise his work in the streets). They clothed me in the clothes of death. Or like harmonious thunderings* the seats* of heaven among. The children walking two and two in red and blue and green.11.” weep see explanation above woe intense grief/sorrow/unhappiness thy your say? ia spune! heath câmpie stearpă injury rău. lest* you drive* an angel from your door. with wands* as white as snow. it is ironic that “sweep” becomes “weep” (a plânge) soot funingine to curl a se încreţi/cârlionţa hush taci. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 213 . The Chimney Sweeper (from Songs of Experience) A little black thing among the snow. hornar sold to sell. alături. nedreptate misery intense unhappiness or suffering TEXT 6. în preajmă to sport a zburda. a se deştepta TEXT 6. William Blake. Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands. William Blake. And are gone to praise God and his Priest and King. And because I am happy and dance and sing. fii liniştit sight vision coffin sicriu. O what a multitude they seemed. Now like a mighty* wind they raise to heaven the voice of song. Crying “weep*. but multitudes of lambs. a se juca to want to feel the need or longing for something. The hum* of multitudes was there. wise guardians of the poor. Grey-headed beadles* walked before. their innocent faces clean. to be lacking something rose to rise (rose.

Babe can never hunger there. in the Revelation) to cherish to treasure something (a preţui.Reader ‘twas it was th Holy Thursday Ascension Day. a iubi) lest ca să nu.13. fertil. In a rich and fruitful* land Babes reduced to misery. sterp. roditor fed to feed (fed): a hrăni usurous cămătăresc (see again the Glossary) bleak sterp. soft. the 40 day after Easter. ca nu cumva to drive (from) a alunga. And where-e’er the rain does fall. and to the Last Judgement. ghimpe where-e’er wherever to appal to make someone feel shocked and upset (a îngrozi) 214 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . gentle light (strălucire) all their own coming from inside themselves hum a low continuous murmuring sound mighty very strong and powerful thundering tunet the seats of heaven among among the seats of heaven: in the sky (allusion to judgement seat. Nor poverty the mind appal*. It is eternal winter there. a goni TEXT 6. Fed* with cold and usurous* hand? Is that trembling cry a song? Can it be a song of joy? And so many children poor? It is a land of poverty! And their sun does never shine. who helped the priest in various ways. when the ascension of Christ to heaven is celebrated beadle an officer in British churches in the past. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Experience) Is this a holy thing to see. a monument of baroque architecture seated aşezaţi radiance great happiness that shows in someone’s face. rece. especially by keeping order wand baghetă dome hemispherical roof St Paul’s Cathedral the largest cathedral in London. And their ways are filled with thorns*. And their fields are bleak* and bare*. lugubru bare gol. re-built th in the late 17 century. neroditor thorn spin. For where-e’er* the sun does shine. fruitful fecund. William Blake.

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