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Specializarea LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ Forma de învăţământ ID - semestrul III
SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY BRITISH LITERATURE
Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature
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.
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
2.1. 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
188.8.131.52. 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. 3.1.1. 184.108.40.206.1. 220.127.116.11. 2.3. 4.5.2. 3.3.2. 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 . 3.4. 2. 3.3. 3. 2.Contents 18.104.22.168.7. 4. 3. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No. 3. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 4 22.214.171.124.5.4.4. 3. 4.5.1. 3. 126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.5. 2. 184.108.40.206.2.1. 3. 3.2. 3.4.6. 220.127.116.11.3.2. 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. 4. 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. 2. 18.104.22.168. 3.4.2. The Works of John Milton Unit objectives Milton.5.4. 4.1. 3.
6. 5. 5. 4.4.2. 22.214.171.124.126.96.36.199.1. 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.2. 5.5. 5. 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.5.4. 4.4.1. 4. 5. 5.1. 5.4.2. 188.8.131.52. 4.4. 4. 5.4.3. 4.3. 5. 5. 5. 5. “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.7.3. 5.3. 4. 184.108.40.206. 220.127.116.11.4. 18.104.22.168.3.1.Contents 22.214.171.124. 5.1. 5. 5. 5. 126.96.36.199. 188.8.131.52.7. Gulliver.1. 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 5 184.108.40.206. 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 . 5. 4.2. 5.2. 220.127.116.11.3. 4.3.2. 18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.
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. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.126.96.36.199.3. 6.3.1. 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. 6. 6.1.3. 6. 6. 6. 6. 6.6. 6. 6.2. 6.Contents Gallery of personalities SAA No. The Seasons William Cowper.4.3.4. 6. 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.188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206.2.1. 3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading Reader in seventeenth and eighteenth century literature Selected bibliography iv Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 6. 6. 220.127.116.11.1. 6. 6. 6.4.3. 18.104.22.168.7.1.1.
Fielding. among others). It also aims at developing your “reading competence. Blake. Being concerned with aspects of literary history. this course will give you a minimum of contextual detail. Milton.Introduction INTRODUCTION 1. but also to examine more closely particular texts by the most important authors (Shakespeare. and on certain texts – will hopefully help you to overcome the relatively great temporal and cultural distance separating us from those centuries. In this way. and will highlight the contributions of their most representative literary personalities. It will thus contribute to the consolidation of your knowledge and understanding of British culture and civilisation. and to the enrichment of your grasp of the English language. and an “agent” in the cultural dynamics in a country. this course aims at enlarging your understanding of British culture and civilisation. the study of the present course will more efficiently contribute to your professional becoming. Before starting your study. What this course is about This course is a brief introduction to English literature in the 17th and 18th centuries. by encouraging your response to particular texts. Literature is always an important testimony to the evolution of this spirit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 1 . You will be able to build a general picture of the main literary achievements of this period. 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. it would be helpful if you refreshed your acquaintance with the basic historical and cultural framework of the 17th and 18th centuries. Defoe. a carrier of values. Swift. The double focus of the course – on general aspects of a particular period or doctrine. It will familiarise you with the defining features of the literary trends and doctrines of these two centuries. You are expected and urged to bring to the understanding of this extended literary period the knowledge acquired in your previous study. such as was presented in your Cultural Studies course. How this course can help you The study of this course will widen your perspective on English literature and its evolution. Course objectives As already mentioned.” at helping you refine your perception of literary phenomena and categories. but also an intimate acquaintance with the spirit of that culture and civilisation. 3. 2.
the Restoration. you should therefore be able to: define the distinctive features. 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. in a given text. the characteristic attitudes and concerns of such cultural-historical-literary movements or periods as the Renaissance. a unit contains a series of “auxiliary” sections: a Summary.g. • 4.lIntroduction This complex aim presupposes your development of certain specific competences. By the end of your study of this course. and a Gallery of personalities.g. or establish what links Fielding’s novels to literary Neoclassicism. Each unit. forming a chronological survey of the major literary developments in the 17th and 18th centuries. is structured around a series of tasks that you must accomplish – the self-assessing questions (the SAQs). as part of your overall assessment. 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. a Glossary. in its turn. the Baroque. a list of key words. Some of the units also contain an assignment that you have to do and send to your tutor. Course content and structure This course is structured in six units of study. preRomanticism) • identify such features in the work of a particular author or in a particular text (e. 2 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the Augustan Age. or what makes Blake a Romantic poet) • identify. Besides them. The solutions and suggestions for SAQs are provided in a separate section. characterisation. thematic and formal structure in the works of various authors. Neoclassicism.
• Unit 4 (The Restoration and the Augustan Age) deals with four major aspects: the comedy of manners during the age of the Restoration. • Unit 2 (The late Renaissance and the Baroque) deals with the emergence of the baroque sensibility in English late Renaissance literature. The variety of these learning tasks will. hopefully. 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). the epic poem Paradise Lost. and they will enable you to work with it in a specific context. H. These tasks will guide you in the process of ordering your knowledge. 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. and to draw your own conclusions. Defoe. • 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. Richardson. The self-assessment questions (SAQs) The self-assessment questions in each unit have the role of helping you to structure and organise your study. The unit surveys characteristic preRomantic themes and motifs. but also to your independent thinking and to your imagination. Sterne –. The main focus in this unit is on the imaginative structure and thematic interest of Milton’s masterpiece. and insists on William Blake as both a pre-Romantic and Romantic poet.2. The major authors considered in this unit are Shakespeare and the poets John Donne and Andrew Marvell. the literary doctrine of Neoclassicism. with main focus on Jonathan Swift. engage you actively and in diverse ways in the process of study. They appeal not only to your memory.1. Fielding and L. S. You will get acquainted with the contributions of four major novelists – D. the periodical essay of the 18th century as an important contribution to Augustan literature. • 4. • Unit 3 (The works of John Milton) emphasises Milton’s Christian humanism. and Augustan satire.Introduction 4. The most common SAQs in this course will require you to: Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 3 . as well as major representatives. and with the evolution of this genre. • 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. with an emphasis on the evolution of genres and styles and their main representatives.
an author’s work. state its theme • comment on / interpret a given fragment. A line in your textboxes is estimated to contain ten words on the average. Solutions and suggestions for SAQs You can check your answers to each SAQ by going to this section. etc.lIntroduction answer questions about the theme. You are given detailed instructions about what is expected from you. You are strongly advised to resist the temptation of consulting this section before you have actually tried to do the exercises yourself. 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. Do not get discouraged if some of your answers should not come near the suggestions offered at the end. Remember that what counts most is the process of thinking that leads you to a particular answer. narrative technique. the independent intellectual effort that you are encouraged to put into your learning. and.. after you have identified them in/after a provided short description • match a given literary fragment with a given paraphrase. line. etc. You are required to solve these SAQs in the blank spaces provided for each of them in textboxes. summarise its argument. at the end of the unit. characterisation. in the literary text you were asked to work on.3. symbolic elements. with the typological definition of a work. so as to obtain synthetic reformulations or rephrasings of relevant details about a literary period. and you are advised to read those instructions carefully and to follow them. fragment) • complete sentences. 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). if the case may be. of a certain work or a provided fragment • explain the relevance or significance of a certain item (phrase. etc. 4 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 4. Try to analyse your errors and to become aware of everything you have missed in the instructions of the SAQ. • A self-assessed question (SAQ) is signalled in the course text by this icon accompanying a textbox. the title of a work. match incomplete statements so as to reconstruct an idea or a description • identify true/false sentences. • paraphrase a given fragment from a studied literary work. The estimated length of your answers will be indicated as number of words / number of lines. stylistic features.
• the Selective bibliography at the end of the course. • Further reading. whose Glossaries will send you back to the Glossary in Unit 1. an asterisk must be understood to mark not just the word it is attached to. the term Enlightenment.4. with the pages where you may find relevant information. Sometimes. in Unit 1. you will look up the whole phrase in the Glossary.3. which is explained in the Glossary in Unit 1. the notion of heroic couplet is explained in subchapter 1. other instruments meant to assist your study. you will be sometimes returned to the Glossary of a previous unit to reinforce or refresh your understanding of them. in order to make sure you remember exactly what a term refers to. For instance. The terms included in the Glossary are marked by an asterisk (*) in the text of the unit. Thus. if necessary or desired. The materials indicated in the Further reading section and in the Selective bibliography (see below) offer you supplementary information. for the Great Chain of Being*. the Glossaries will send you back to 1. at the end. You may also be directed back to a certain subchapter in a previous unit. These auxiliary sections are: the Summary and a list of key words. to organise it around the most important issues • the Glossary (in alphabetical order). Most of the books included there are available in any University library. which contains titles that should not be very hard to find in libraries. Some terms may recur in several units.1.Introduction 4.1. when this notion is used again in Units 4 or 6. but the phrase of which that word is part. For example. not just Being. You may ask your tutor to help you with the access to those sources. which will enable you to review and focus your knowledge. which includes basic information about the life and work of the mentioned personalities. • the Gallery of personalities (in the alphabetical order of the last names). Auxiliary sections Each unit contains. will also appear in Units 5 and 6.3. if you wish to supplement or clarify your knowledge • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 5 . which indicates a minimal bibliography for each unit. in which terms or phrases that have been considered difficult or unfamiliar to you are explained.
These first two SAAs will therefore consist in more than one task. which contains the selection of texts you need in order to accomplish some of the course tasks.lIntroduction 4. in which the words and phrases supposed to be unknown. The Reader provides you with little glossaries for each text. As the texts are not very long. The given explanation or translation into Romanian applies only to the respective context. This is why the same word may appear with different explanations/translations in several glossaries. the course contains three send-away assignments (SAAs). the number of tasks. If you should find these lexical notes insufficient for your understanding of a particular text. which will enable your tutor to assess your performance in the course work. In any case. while SAA no. As we are dealing with 17th and 18th century literature. A send-away assignment (SAA) is signalled in the text by the icon accompanying this textbox. Assessment and evaluation Besides the self-assessment questions included in each unit. and 6. The three SAAs are placed at the end of units 3. especially the poetry texts. The cumulated weight of these SAAs in your final grade is 40%. or misleadingly familiar to you are explained either in English or in Romanian. 5. before you start solving the task. and make sure you understand its general meaning or basic ideas. 5. try to read each fragment more than once. 1 will assess your knowledge of units 2 and 3. The written test that you will sit at the end of the semester will add the other 60%. The table below represents the place. this should not take you too much time. don’t hesitate to use a good dictionary. some of these texts might seem difficult to you. SAA no. or one word may be given an explanation/translation different from the one you might be familiar with. The Reader The course is accompanied by a Reader. difficult.2 will cover units 4 and 5.5. and the weight of each assignment: 6 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
Note that a typewritten paper is likely to ease your tutor’s work. 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). As in the case of the SAQs. however. your course work may take you more time. Most of the time. Your ability to identify and use the knowledge required by a particular situation is part of what is assessed in any test. 6. clarity. theoretically. If your level of proficiency is lower. You may. half of the answer is already contained in the question. 2. 50% 50% 50% 30% 20% 100% 10% 20% 10% 40% In the assessment of each assignment. • the coherence. 6 hours are allotted to your tutorial meetings. and 8 hours to the completion of your SAAs. to go through each unit in approximately 4 hours. If you have no possibility to type your assignment.3 3 5 6 2 3 1 1.1 SAA no. You can reserve two weeks for each unit of learning – which means that you are expected. at least take care that your handwriting should be fully legible. 3. 28 are meant for individual study of the course material (the solving of the SAQs included). Your study schedule This course is devised for 42 hours of study. Of these hours. 2. the tutor will take into account: • the degree to which your answer respects the formulated requirement. so pay special attention to the instructions for each task (30%). make sure you understand what is being asked of you in each assignment.2 SAA no. Plan your study by taking into account that a semester has 14 weeks.Introduction Unit Number of tasks and their weight in each SAA Weight of each SAA in the final assessment SAA no. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 7 . 1. 1. find your own rhythm and divide your study time into several sessions. This is more likely to happen when you are required to work on literary texts. whose reading may take you some extra time.
respectively.3 3 3 8 SAA no. as 40% of the final grade.2 SAA no. Each unit includes a series of self-assessing tasks (SAQs). which you will find in the Reader accompanying the coursebook. At the end of Units 3. The three assignments will count. The course contains several auxiliary sections (summary. which will help you to organise and focus your knowledge. as the course provides you with the solutions and suggestions for SAQs at the end of each unit. of the evolution of literary genres. according to a pre-established schedule. forms and styles. a revision of the course material. but which also focus on dominant genres and on outstanding. 8 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . while the final written test will represent 60 % in your overall evaluation. whose content follows a chronological line. You have the possibility to monitor your work by verifying your answers. which you must write and send to your tutor. Many of these SAQs require your response to a literary text. It is structured in six units of study. Summary This course offers you an overview of the literary periods and trends. and gallery of personalities). along the 17th and 18th centuries in England. More information about the subjects in each unit is available in the selective bibliography which concludes the coursebook.1 2 Planning your course work is important as it will enable you to send your assignments to the tutor in due time. there are SAAs.lIntroduction The first and the last week should be reserved for the Introduction and. and 6. glossary. list of key words. 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. together. as well as a list of suggested further reading. representative authors. 5.
4.4.2. 1. 1.3. 1. 1.4. 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.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background UNIT 1 THE SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES: INTELLECTUAL AND LITERARY BACKGROUND Unit Outline 1 22.214.171.124.1. 126.96.36.199. 1.1. 188.8.131.52. 1.1.4. 184.108.40.206. 1.1.1. 1. 1.
1. of the Enlightenment. literature. 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 intellectual scene Along the two centuries. of philosophical empiricism* determined to a great extent the attitudes to man in his relationship to society. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. a powerful flourishing nation. 10 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . science. the year of the Glorious Revolution*. attitudes and practices. religion. 1. The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries constitute a complex period. Political. The completion of this transition was to take place during the next age. in which the progress of England to modernity was steady in all fields.1. nature and divinity during the Age of Reason.1. Culturally the two centuries correspond to two movements whose basic tendency was the emancipation of man: the Renaissance* and the Enlightenment*. marked the entrance into modernity.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. in the latter part of the 17th century. mentalities. The end of “high Renaissance” (the flourishing of the Elizabethan* Age) and the “late Renaissance”. The growing critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. radical changes occurred in intellectual habits and preoccupations. The gradual achievement of political stability. philosophy. 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. social and economic life. The rise. as the Enlightenment is often described. which in England is in fact considered to have started in 1688. as well as the faith in progress. the arts – all fields of human endeavour went through crucial transformations during the 17th century. colonial expansion and an extraordinary economic development made England. obscurantism and intolerance. seen as extending up to the Restoration* (1660) were periods of gradual but irreversible changes in modes of thought.
The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Francis Bacon It is also during these two centuries that modern science was born.2. had important philosophical and theological implications: the universe was now conceived as a perfect mechanism.1. working according to impersonal laws which testified to the supreme intelligence of the Creator. It was a rational alternative to religious dogmatism. and it was essentially optimistic. the “universal Architect. or Natural Religion –. It was to be counter-balanced by the Evangelical Revival*. It was a highly intellectualised religious approach. The moral philosophy of the Deists argued that man was innately good. 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. in 1662. and which encouraged emotional effusion as a way of achieving communion with God. The scientific discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton*. Deism attempted to give a rational foundation to religious thought. in a systematic effort. which was left to develop by itself on the basis of these perfect laws. Deists believed that the admirable order of the universe. which could not offer spiritual comfort to the large masses of the poor and uneducated. a reaction against mysticism and obscurantism. The optimism of the Deists extended to human nature.” This idea will be echoed several decades later. Engaging in a variety of original scientific experiments. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 11 . the capacity of distinguishing right from wrong. initiated by Isaac Newton and John Locke*. His well-known maxim “Knowledge is Power” points to the utilitarian conception of the role of science.” 1. that human life be enriched by new discoveries and powers.” God was seen as the prime cause of a harmonious universe. a religious movement which aimed at reviving the Evangelical spirit and the ideal of Christian life. to reconcile Reason and Faith. when The Royal Society “for the improving of Natural Knowledge” was founded. manifest in its rationally and experimentally discernible laws. under the patronage of Charles II. One of the most ardent promoters of the new scientific spirit was Francis Bacon* (1561-1626). This new faith – Deism. In his work Novum Organum (1620) he explicitly states that “The true and lawful goal of the sciences is simply this. endowed with a sixth sense: the moral sense. was an evidence of the creator’s good will. in particular. The Royal Society endeavoured. combined the traditional confidence in the divine infinite wisdom with the intellectual spirit of the age. to “overcome the mysteries of all the works of Nature” and to apply that knowledge “for the benefit of human life.
The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1.1. Read the statements below and identify the true ones. The Deist notion of innate virtue came to be connected with man’s capacity for feeling. The interest in the constitution and workings of the human mind awakened the awareness that man’s response to reality was not only rational. Individual and social good was the object of all endeavours in this age. 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. The Royal Society was an institution concerned with the spreading of Neoclassical principles in art and literature. when he declared: ”The proper study of mankind is Man. appropriately.3. in his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). continued the project of the Renaissance. T F 3. the central concern of the Enlightenment. in the latter part of the Age of the Enlightenment. T F 4. but also affective and instinctual. to superstition and obscurantism. with its belief in the perfectibility of man. for each sentence. which made Enlightenment England a model of civilisation for the Western world. 1. 1. Circle T (true) or F (false). 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. which may be defined as the Age of Sensibility. The Enlightenment: an age of progress On the whole. 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. The cult of Reason thus gave way to the cult of Feeling.” The whole century was preoccupied with the idea of man’s happiness and of the improvement of man’s condition on earth. the Enlightenment.1. and which prepared the way for the Romantic Age*. 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. 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.4. The Deist image of God as the “Universal Architect” reveals a rationalist-mechanicist conception of the universe. The emergence of Deism was a reaction to religious dogmatism. The growing spirit of individualism. T F 2. It was a general dedication to the cause of progress. T F 12 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . T F 5. The poet Alexander Pope indicated.
for instance. T F 8. There was a general care for discipline and refinement in composition. If you have failed to identify any of the sentences correctly as true or false.1. After 1688. The division into Elizabethan. including readers of more modest education. Numerous treatises on literary art established norms and precepts.1.” T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in the orbit of the crown. The abundance of classical Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 13 . regularity. but also the ultimate arbiter life on literature in matters of literary and artistic fashions. A new interest in rhetoric animated authors to pursue eloquence by a lavish use of figures of speech and the display of wit*. Jacobean* and Caroline* of the “high” and late Renaissance literature points not only to a temporal delimitation. the social diversification and the “unfixing” of the strictly hierarchical order of the Renaissance led gradually towards a “democratisation” of literature. The literature of the Renaissance was under the sign of the classical revival*. An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries From a literary point of view. The Evangelical Revival shared with Deism the attempt to give a rational foundation to religious faith. the decrease in the power of the Crown. with their Literature in the Age of Common Man cultivated taste. You may also need to revise some of the terms explained in the Glossary. and the accepted patterns and conventions were touchstones for literary virtuosity and originality. symmetry. The Court was not only the catalyst of the emerging national feeling. at the end of the unit. and exalted Reason as the only defining human faculty. the great ages of the Renaissance and of the Enlightenment may be further divided according to various criteria. It was the main focus of literary attention. and the literary field was no longer confined to the learned.1. to 1. in one way or another. when the literary audience becomes more diversified. but also to the close connection between the dominant literary values of those ages and Court life. The Age of the Enlightenment excluded completely the interest in human feeling and emotion. T F 7. This is mainly connected with the rise of the middle classes and the growth of their cultural importance. The 18th century is called sometimes The Age of Common Man. Alexander Pope pointed out the humanistic orientation of the Enlightenment in his maxim “The proper study of mankind is man. 1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 6. that the notion of reading public emerges now. It is significant.2. 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.4. with little or no classical knowledge. The absolute authority of the monarch made the Court the Influence of Court centre of intellectual and literary life. and both writers and audiences were. for proportion. read again subchapters.
Molière. when the merits of the “Ancients” and the “Moderns” became the object of comparison. The great French classical authors of the 17th century (Boileau. Molière)…… d. …the Augustan Age. The Court was the main source of influence…… b. above all. a new consciousness of the relationship between literary tradition and modernity. The comparative merit of ancient and modern standards of literary excellence and learning became a central issue of critical debate. Jean Racine. but also to the influence of the French authors of the great classical century – the age of Louis XIV. …… c. Pierre Corneille. This reflects. Complete each sentence in the provided space. 14 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . SAQ 2 Read the partial statements below and match them.” started in the late 17th century. This led to the emergence Neoclassicism* in England. 2. in which the declining phase of the Renaissance was characterised by a return to the classics. …on literary taste and fashions during the Renaissance. The relationship between tradition and modernity became a matter of literary consciousness during…… 1. on the model of the French controversy known as the “Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns. English Neoclassicism must be linked not only to the survival of the Renaissance humanism. during the Augustan Age*. Corneille.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. with its highly conventional forms and rhetorical style. but they were resumed during the Restoration*. so as to obtain complete sentences describing aspects of the general literary picture of the 17th and 18th centuries. England’s intellectual and literary exchanges with Catholic France had been suspended during the Civil War*. Much of Renaissance literature. The mid-seventeenth century was an age of transition. the “Sun King” –: Nicolas Boileau. a. A significant aspect of Augustan literature is the development and importance of literary criticism. Racine.
continued to be used throughout the 17th and 18th centuries: John Milton. in a variety of poetical forms: philosophical poems. It favoured conciseness. for instance. acquainted with the great classical authors and works. They approached other themes besides love: e. A remarkable poetic development in the first half of the 17th century was the metaphysical poetry (John Donne. which departed from the artificiality and poetry conventionalism of most Elizabethan poetry. …influenced English literary Neoclassicism. the pastoral* lyric. at the end of the unit. Thomas Gray and William Collins (in the latter). Alexander Pope. The chief model for The sonnet sequence Renaissance soneteers was Petrarch* and his love sonnets to Laura. In parallel. Apart from the classical poetic forms that survived into the Restoration and the Augustan Age. The heroic couplet was the perfect verse couplet structure of the Age of Reason. Its perfect mastery is illustrated by works like Pope’s didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711). It appealed both to the intellect and to the emotions. Its name refers to a certain Metaphysical expressive strategy. The most Renaissance lyric enduring poetic achievements of the early 17th century is the forms sequence of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609). John Dryden (in the former). in its various forms – the song*.2.g. A “metaphysical” strain exists in Shakespeare’s final period of creation. If you have failed to make the right match. George Herbert. …addressed itself to learned readers.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 3. and it made extensive use of wit. or religion and politics – John Milton. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 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. The sonnet fell into disuse during the late Renaissance and it was revived only towards the end of the 18th century. James Thomson. and the Puritan Andrew Marvell must also be included here. conveyed by means of a rich variety of rhetorical effects. tight logical coherence and striking imagery. the ode*. or his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). but English poets varied the highly conventional form of this kind of poem. Other lyric forms endured: the ode. which are illustrative of a pre-Romantic* cross-current. by the Romantic poets. or meditative-descriptive poems like James Thomson’s The Seasons (1726-1730) or William Cowper’s The Task (1785). Robert Herrick). 4. 1. religious faith – John Donne. you need to revise subchapter 1.3. original or translated epics. combining classical restraint with force of argument and expressive clarity. The common vehicle for it was the heroic couplet – two rhyming The Augustan heroic lines containing a complete statement. Thomas Carew. The evolution of poetic forms The lyric. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 15 . concentration. the blank verse* – on the model of Milton in his great Blank verse epic* Paradise Lost (1667) – was extensively used in the 18th century. the sonnet* – dominated Renaissance poetry. Andrew Marvell.
at the end of the unit. SAQ 3 Which are the most popular kinds of poems in the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least six of them. enjoyed a widely popular appeal. 1. together with their most outstanding representatives. It was the only form of literature which. the verse satires of Dryden and Pope (Unit 4). 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. a brilliant constellation of playwrights founded a dramatic tradition which represents the best and most original expression of the nation’s creative genius. In little more than half a century (1580-1642). 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). If there should be major differences between them. and the “poetry of sensibility” which announced the coming of the Romantic Age (Unit 6). some of them of popular origin (the song. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 16 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Towards the end of the century. The flourishing of English drama during the Renaissance is a unique phenomenon. In the following units of this course. a new appreciation of older poetic forms. 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.4.3. through its representation on stage. revise subchapter 1. in the space left below.
when the Puritans* closed the theatres. 1633). The great acting companies were under the patronage of the king. pastoral drama. John Ford (‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore. 1607). A particular type of protagonist became fashionable in revenge tragedies: the villain.1. with the restoration of monarchy. Unlike Senecan plays. with his exploration of the darkness of strange passions. murder. sometimes he rights the wrong done to another. with its audience arranged according to rank. treachery. 1. historical drama. Thomas Middleton (Women Beware Women. They saw the theatre as a source of moral corruption through the “idle” pleasure that it offered. Renaissance playwrights borrowed the five-act structure. each variety of spectator responding to the performance according to his/her education and imagination. where bloody deeds were only evoked through an efficient rhetoric of the dramatic discourse.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Contemporary reconstruction of a Jacobean playhouse The play-house. who usually appears as a ghost on the stage. the sensational plot. inspired by the plays of the Roman Stoic Seneca*. rape. the wronged hero plans revenge. but the spirit of the great tradition was never recaptured. sensational and macabre. The dramatic genres popular during the Renaissance were extremely diverse: tragedy and comedy with their varieties. and the rhetorical manner. or Vittoria Corombona (1612) are among the most accomplished portrayals of the villain in drama. Some dramatic forms went out of fashion. fascinating through unbounded ambition. On the whole. Masters of this genre were the Jacobean dramatists Cyril Tourneur (The Revenger’s Tragedy. In such plays. drama witnessed a decline. etc. in Paradise Lost. The great age of English drama ended abruptly in 1642. masque*. Jacobean and Caroline plays usually represented atrocities on stage. tragi-comedy.4. as well as John Webster’s heroine in The White Devil. Jacobean tragedy One of the most widespread forms of tragedy was the revenge tragedy. the fundamentally evil hero/heroine. In 1660. Of the Caroline playwrights. and in the 18th century it was replaced by the novel in popularity. They were generally. 1612) and especially John Webster (The Duchess of Malfi. From Senecan tragedy. 1614). and this “unholy alliance” between crown and stage increased the intransigence of the Puritans. was a miniature of the English society. Milton’s Satan. exploiting excessively morbid ingredients like incest. 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. Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1601) is the finest illustration of this kind of tragedy. 17 Revenge tragedy The villain in revenge tragedy Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . is the most gifted. insanity. Shakespeare’s protagonist in Richard III (1592-3) and Lady Macbeth (Macbeth. while others changed. 1605-6). to accommodate the tastes of a new public. built around the theme of revenge. daring and wit. but destroys himself along with his enemies.
centred on the theme of love. though each in a different way. Renaissance tragedy had four acts – a structure borrowed from Seneca.1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background A distinct type in late Renaissance drama is domestic tragedy.4. intended to correct vices and follies by denouncing them. identifying the four true ones. or at least tinged with bitterness. If you have failed to identify the true statements. The Jacobean and Caroline authors of revenge tragedies had Seneca as their model. For each sentence.4. Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a classic example of domestic tragedy. Ben Jonson* illustrates another form. in the last period of creation. at the end of the unit. T F 5. T F 3. 1. or The Silent Woman (1609). Volpone (1606). read the following statements. or in Philaster (1609) by John Fletcher and Francis Beaumont. Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are the great masters. his comedies become darker. The hero of revenge tragedy often destroys himself in his desire to right a wrong done to him or to another. T F 7. but. a genre which will survive into the 18th century. with its noble characters. 18 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . circle the appropriate letter: T (true) or F (false). reminds of the fascinating villain-heroes of the Renaissance revenge tragedies by his extraordinary ambition and boldness.2. SAQ 4 For a revision of some important features of Renaissance English drama. Seneca’s tragedies inspired Jacobean and Caroline authors in the representation of atrocities on stage. the hierarchy of English society. and 1. the satirical comedy. whose fall from eminence marks the destruction of an order. T F 4. reflecting. as in All’s Well That Ends Well (1602-3) or Measure for Measure (1604-5). Milton’s Satan. read again subchapters 1. Comedy in the early 17th century In the field of comedy. dealing with middle or lower class life and concentrating on personal and domestic maters – unlike “grand” tragedy. 1. T F Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. T F 6. The mixture of serious and comic elements results in tragicomedy. T F 2. in miniature. as in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida (1601-2) or The Winter’s Tale (1610-11). Shakespeare’s Elizabethan phase included a number of exquisite romantic comedies.4. The English play-house during the Renaissance accommodated a diverse audience. Epicoene. The Alchemist (1610) and Bartholomew Fair (1614) are social comedies of city life. in Paradise Lost. His best plays.
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. 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. 1722). John Gay. The best achievement in this genre belongs to John Dryden (The Indian Emperor. She Stoops to Conquer. Henry Fielding). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 19 . 1775. This parodic spirit was not confined to drama: the mockheroic style* was also used in poetry (e. George Villiers. but it appealed to a wide middle class public. in his satirical play The Beggar’s Opera (1728). 1769). Richard Cumberland (The Brothers. Tragedy was replaced in popular taste by a form that stood in sharp contrast with the unheroic spirit of the age: heroic drama. satirises heroic tragedy and so does Henry Fielding in his successful parody The Tragedy of Tragedies. Heroic plays. 1773). In The Rehearsal (1671). who demanded models of virtue and decency. but whose aim was not so much to correct manners as to entertain. The most representative works of this kind belong to Richard Steele (The Conscious Lovers. for instance. Drama during the Restoration period Restoration drama developed in an age of scepticism and cynicism. these plays built a world of high passion and incredible bravery. There were a few attempts to revive classical tragedy or domestic tragedy. or The Mistakes of a Night. The Conquest of Granada. Duke of Buckingham. mocks at certain theatrical conventions. too. of pleasure-seeking and relaxation after the strict moral code imposed to the nation by the Puritans. A more representative achievement of the Restoration is the comedy of manners.g.g. with their grandiose declamations and artificial conception of heroism. which continued the realistic spirit of the earlier satirical plays. Heroic drama The comedy of manners 1. 1669-70). 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. The School for Scandal. and it denounced puritanical virtue as hypocrisy.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. 1768. Oliver Goldsmith (The GoodNatured Man.3.4. The main representatives – the Restoration Wits* – were courtiers and aristocrats who assumed the role of leaders of fashion and taste. or The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great (1731). with idealised heroes and heroines divided between love and honour or duty. Under the influence of French tragedies. Alexander Pope) and in the novel (e. It lacked the latter’s liveliness and brilliance. but also of French and Spanish romantic novels of adventure. 1665. which ridiculed them through exaggerated imitation. 1777). and Richard Brinsely Sheridan (The Rivals. were a passing extravagance.4. a stylish and sophisticated world. but serious drama declined during the 18th century. Restoration comedy presented an elegant society.
2. Two moments in the evolution of English drama will be further detailed in this course: in Unit 2. and in Unit 4 you will be acquainted with more features of Restoration comedy. to 1. at the end of the unit. we shall focus on William Shakespeare’s later plays. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.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. together with their most outstanding representatives.4. revise subchapters 1.4. If there should be major differences between them.4. 20 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
The English translation of the Bible – the “Authorised Version” of 1611. prepared the English language for a variety of uses: in scientific. influenced immensely Bunyan’s the language of prose. the virtues of common speech permeated the language of all kinds of writings. a precious and highly ornate language. suitable for conveying “the knowledge of things” and intelligible to the average Englishman. English as an instrument of literary and intellectual communication still competed with classical Latin. Francis Bacon was the first notable writer to plead for – and to illustrate – a prose style more suited for intellectual argument. The evolution of prose style At the beginning of the 17th century. Influence of Latin on prose style The prose of intellectual argument 1. More and more. displaying a variety of styles. deliberately artificial and intricate. on clarity and rationality. Francis Bacon’s Essays (1597. Under the influence of Latin – especially of Cicero* –. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 21 . in which rhetorical figures were subordinated to rational lucidity. 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). wealth and freshness greatly influenced the language of prose. with its illustration to simplicity and natural flow of common speech. gave way to an ideal of prose style more suited to the Age of Common Man. temptations. Thomas Hobbes* and John Locke also insisted on the necessity of a language at once flexible and precise.5. the essay* proved the most flexible. accomplished under the patronage of James I – established a model of English whose beauty. Here. struggles and William Blake: aspirations. religious writings are particularly important. in political tracts and pamphlets. The development of an aphoristic style*. he describes the Christian soul’s search for salvation in the form of an allegorical journey along the path of life. Later in the century. The Pilgrim’s Progress Among the prose forms widely used for intellectual argument. Gradually. the universal language of the Renaissance. another Latin influence began to mould English prose style: that of Seneca and Tacitus*. The language of prose tended to become plain and transparent. 1612. weaknesses. blending concision with wit.1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. This allegorical expression of Puritan faith. Journalism as a form of prose writing emerged during the Civil War and flourished during the 18th century. philosophical and theological writings.5. Sermons were a widely popular form of prose-writing. The rhetorical extravagance and ingenuity which had still dominated the early 17th century (not only in prose). prose works written in English displayed a highly rhetorical style. as the growing complexity of life increased the need for social and intellectual communication. 1625) are prose classics in English literature. contributing essentially to the forging of a more straightforward and simple style. with its trials. Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Of the literary forms that contributed significantly to the development of English prose.
In the 17th century. pamphlets* (e. in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690).g. 1644 – a famous defense of the freedom of the press). etc. Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. the great literary achievement of the 18th century. which analyses the constitution of human society. The same encyclopaedic. Human character as portrayed in their essays was at the same time typical and individualised. letters. spiritual biographies (John Bunyan. 22 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . aphoristic style.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. exhausting the subjects they dealt with. with Characters of Virtue and Vices (1608). with his Life of John Donne among other works of this kind – 1670). biographies (Izaak Walton. Joseph Hall inaugurated the English tradition of this genre. The character as a prose genre influenced Richard Steele and Joseph Addison in their periodical essays. which anticipates the prose of the Neoclassical period. 1666).” 1642) are the most outstanding representatives of this genre. delighting in speculation and building the knowledge they explored into an elaborate structure. executed in a witty. but its impressive intellectual architecture is achieved in a simple. unadorned style. of remarkable precision and force. “The Religion of a Doctor. This kind of approach had a considerable influence on the realistic novel. Samuel Pepys). Samuel Purchas). Like drama. inclusive character is displayed by Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651). 1621) and Sir Thomas Browne (Religio Medici. diaries (John Evelyn. another form of prose writing which displayed divergent tendencies in style was the anatomy. Robert Burton (The Anatomy of Melancholy. “Characters” were miniature portraits of human types. a prose genre whose model was provided by the Greek writer Theophrastus*. with its explorations of the complexities of human mind and character. 1632 – the most virulent Puritan attack on the theatre. whose purpose was didactic or satirical. A variety of other prose genres developed during the 17th century: historical and geographical accounts (Walter Raleigh. the spiritual autobiography and the “character” were literary expressions of the growing interest in human individuality. Milton’s Areopagitica. Anatomies were monuments of learning. the biography as an emerging prose genre. William Prynne’s Histriomastix. To these must be added the character.
5. intellectual habits and preoccupations changed radically: philosophic thought became secular. and 1. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. at the end of the unit. to the great movements of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment.1. obscurantism and intolerance. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. marked the entrance into Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 23 . you will learn more about the periodical essay. these two centuries correspond. Within these two centuries. the progress from the old order of the feudal world to the modern age was completed.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. A steady process of economic development and imperial expansion made England the world’s greatest power. since both place Man and the improvement of his condition at the centre of their concerns. The following units will detail some aspects concerning the development of prose in the two centuries: in Unit 4. If there should be major differences between them. more carefully. modern science was born.5. This was a period of great changes at all levels of life in England. read again subchapters 1. as well as the faith in progress. while Unit 5 will deal entirely with the novel in the 18th century. Culturally. in a paragraph of no more than 7 lines / 70 words. the growing scepticism and critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. roughly. between which there is continuity. Within these two centuries. the image of the universe was changed.. Summary This unit has offered you a brief introduction to the intellectual and literary developments of the 17th and 18th centuries.
part of the process of modernisation that the Age of Reason came to acknowledge its own limits. which are reduced to the comically trivial. used to express observations of general truth. noble and heroic characters. 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. burlesque: the exaggerated imitation. 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. however. of serious action. Virgil – were revered models for the English Augustan writers. 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. elevated style. a slow transition took place. The Great Latin writers of that age – Horace. in a caricatural spirit. and the emergence of the Age of Feeling prepared the way to the Romantic sensibility. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 24 .).The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background modernity.D.C. predominantly middle-class. It is. and a major influence on their aesthetic ideal. Ovid.” The short review of the dominant forms of poetry. of the time of emperor Caesar Augustus (27 B. The birth of the novel is the most significant literary development of this “Age of Common Man. From a literary point of view. often by means of paradox. blank verse: unrhymed verse. from a system of genres and styles dominated by classical influences to a more “democratic” tendency.-14 A.
C. civil rights. Thomas Jefferson. The subjects and heroes are taken either from myth. Concepts like human rights. the folk tradition. until 1660. in which personal opinions and observations are presented in a formal or informal manner. legend. social and moral thought. 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. natural law. 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. • essay: a prose composition of varying length. • empiricism: a philosophical orientation which established the primacy of experience in the process of knowledge. by the promotion of intellectual emancipation and the belief in social and moral progress. Diderot (France). This return to the Ancients is the foundation of Renaissance humanism. when it was restored.): “Man is the measure of all things”. and by the search for a model of society in which man’s rights and duties should be exercised in freedom. worth and capacity for self-accomplishment. rejection of arbitrary authority and of absolutism are some of the characteristic attitudes of this age. It is one of the most flexible and adaptable prose forms. separation of powers were central to Enlightenment political. anti-fanaticism. or from history. widely used in all ages. • classical revival: the intellectual. In a broader sense. Thinkers like Thomas Hobbes. The founders of English empiricism were Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) and John Locke (1632-1704). state church) as a reaction against the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 25 • . John Locke. Thomas Paine (the United States) are among the great representatives of this movement. Rousseau. The founder of the revival of classical learning was Petrarch (see note below). 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 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. individual liberty. it evokes an attitude to life which stresses the individual’s dignity. The open conflict between king and Parliament set the whole nation to war.e. humanism. pragmatism. • Elizabethan: related to the reign of Elizabeth I (1558-1603). reconciling a materialist account of reality with a rationalist attitude (i. • epic: long narrative poem celebrating the achievements of heroic personages. and contributed to the intellectual preparation of the French Revolution (1789). characterised by anti-dogmatism and the cult of reason as the supreme guiding principle in human action. Voltaire. • Evangelical Revival: a trend which started within the Anglican Church (the official. • Enlightenment: ideological and cultural movement in the 18th century in Europe and America. Montesquieu. David Hume (Britain). social contract. anti-obscurantism. Tolerance. The victory of the Parliamentary forces led to the abolition of monarchy in 1649. the conviction that reality is ordered according to laws that are accessible to human reason).
and harmony of classical art. an idea. mystery plays: early popular forms of English drama (13th to 16th century) developed out of the Liturgy of the Church and enacting biblical events. Neoclassicism: an aesthetic doctrine inspired from classical Antiquity (especially Latin). uncorrupted life. and soon developed into a distinct religious orientation. founded by John Wesley in the 1740s. simple. expressing lofty sentiments and thoughts regarding an event. masque: courtly entertainment in dramatic form.C. The most famous author of masques in the 17th century (when the genre flourished) was Ben Jonson. idealising shepherd life and creating a nostalgic image of a peaceful. pastoral: a literary composition on a rural theme. James II Stuart.) are the great ancient models for English writers. and corresponded to the rationalistic spirit of the 18th century. It was used in order to make a trivial subject seem dignified and impressive. It addressed itself to the poor. Jacobean: (from Latin Jacobus) related to the reign of James I Stuart (1603-1625). decorative art. Neoclassicism flourished in the latter half of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. to its need for clarity and its aspiration to universality. whose authors were deeply revered and were recommended as models. in harmony with nature. the marginal sections of society. was forced to leave the throne and fled to France. spectacular scenic effects.). but also in Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 26 . Glorious Revolution: in 1688. Neoclassicism meant a return to the purity. mock-heroic style: a style mocking the serious grandeur of the epic. In English literature. 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. who was a Catholic. The Greek poet Pindar (522-442 B. who collaborated with the equally famous architect and stage designer Inigo Jones. In architecture. singing and dancing. The basis of this kind of faith was the Gospel (the New Testament) and its revealed truth. and it was often a device of parody and of burlesque. The term also refers to the form in which such a work was published: a booklet with paper covers. The actors used masks and personified pastoral or mythological figures. solemn style. encouraging a personal experience of conversion.) and the Latin poet Horace (658 B. involving elaborate dialogue. with an elaborate stanza structure and a dignified. This religious orientation developed into a church: the Methodist Church.C. pamphlet: a short prose work on a subject (often political or religious) that the author defends polemically. the Neoclassic period is taken to cover almost a century (16601780). sumptuous costumes and settings. The origins of pastoral are in the work of the Greek poet Theocritus (316-260 B. restraint.C. painting and sculpture. ode: an extended lyric poem. of spiritual regeneration by grace. a person or an object. Its conventions may be found not only in lyric poetry.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • • • excessive rationalism in matters of faith. from the Creation to the Ascension.
its limits are less well defined. Boccaccio. They propagated a doctrine of spiritual equality and cultivated a stern morality. Sir Charles Sedley. Sir George Etherege. on the enlargement of his knowledge of himself and of nature. in their view.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • drama. The Puritans insisted on man’s duty of actively serving God and on his responsibility towards his own conscience. especially their work ethics. Puritans: members of a Protestant religious group. which was the ultimate authority in the interpretation of God’s word in the Holy Scriptures. It placed emphasis on the individual’s spiritual autonomy and creative potential.g. who rejected the authority of the English Church because. The most outstanding of the Restoration Wits (or Court Wits) were George Villiers. Edmund Spenser. favoured the growth of individualism. It was characterised by a remarkable flourishing of arts and literature. selected according to genre and subject. Raphael. Cervantes (Spain). when monarchy was re-established in England after the Puritan rule (1649-1660). tone. which was to play an essential role in the rise of capitalism. and of the awakening of the reformist spirit. romance or the novel. 1492). and brilliant accomplishments in scholarship and science. it overlaps with the Augustan Age. poetic diction: a term that. it had not fully reformed itself. effort. 27 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Restoration Wits: the generic name for the Restoration dramatists. It is sometimes seen as extending to the end of the 17th century. Ariosto. The Renaissance was the age of the great geographical discoveries (e. 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. Leonardo da Vinci. Restoration: historically. Prominent figures of the Renaissance are Petrarch. Duke of Buckingham. Francis Bacon (England). the sense of purpose. for the Neoclassic writers. Lope de Vega. Renaissance: cultural movement which started in Italy in the 14th century and spread to Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries. John Vanbrugh. industry. of the expansion of education. of the rebirth of learning. Romantic: the Romantic Age in England is usually considered to extend from the end of the 18th century to the 1830s. Machiavelli. Pico della Mirandola. William Wycherley. by Columbus. “Wit” designates here the person who displays liveliness and brilliance of spirit. It refers to the particular kind of language – vocabulary. Tasso (Italy). in the 16th and 17th centuries. It is the period of transition from the Middle Ages and the feudal order to early capitalism. of America. and they continued to be used in the 18th century. Shakespeare. Desiderius Erasmus (Holland). which opened the modern era. thus. implied the idea that the language of poetry is different in quality from ordinary language. it was the period of Charles II’s reign (1660-1685). From a literary point of view. Thomas More. “The poetry of sensibility” is another generic term for these pre-Romantic tendencies. Philip Sidney. centred on integrity. Their beliefs and convictions. style – used by a poet. consisting in a tremendous development and transformation in all spheres.
Gallery of personalities • Bacon.e. the promoter of the new scientific spirit. The Romantic spirit is usually associated with the championship of progressive social and political causes. Francis (1561-1626): the most influential thinker of the English Renaissance. the belief in the spiritual correspondence between man and nature. wit: intellectual brilliance and ingenuity. His literary work includes a series of essays on a wide variety of subjects. phlegmatic. He was also an eminent statesman. which emerged in Britain in the context of the sympathy with the struggle of the American colonies for independence from British domination (1775-1781). in the 17th century it came to mean fancy or liveliness of thought and imagination. 1591. poet and scholar. 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. with Every Man in His Humour (1598) and Every Man Out of His Humour (1599). independently of circumstances. as well as an unfinished utopia. choleric and melancholic – were seen as the result of the dominance of one of these humours. philosopher and writer.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • Romanticism is a European cultural and literary movement. Sometimes. During the Renaissance. and with the French Revolution (1789). orator. This theory had a great influence on the conception of character in the 16th and 17th century comedy. surprising associations. The assertion of the self. the four “humours” (i. song: a poem composed for singing. 1591-1595). the founder of modern rationalist materialism. and a writer. Ben (1572-1637): dramatist. fluids) of the body (blood. in which he anticipates many of the later conquests of modern science. Marcus Tullius (106-43 B. it meant intelligence or wisdom. the emphasis on the spontaneity of poetic inspiration are also among distinctive features of Romanticism. two fine examples of comedy of humours. and black bile – or melancholy) were believed to determine a person’s disposition and character. in which the characters act. He started his literary career as a playwright. His famous political speeches and writings Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 28 . the quality of a writing that displays this capacity. Astrophil and Stella. The four traditional temperaments – sanguine. Jonson. sonnet: a poem consisting of 14 lines.): Roman statesman. The New Atlantis (published in 1627). Cicero. Renaissance dramatists used songs in their plays to create a particular atmosphere.C. Amoretti. and a firm believer in man’s creative potential. with various rhyme patterns. one of the most influential literary voices of his age. yellow bile – or choler. the capacity or talent of making unexpected. Edmund Spenser. In mediaeval and Renaissance physiology and pathology. according to a dominating inclination or passion. with or without musical accompaniment. phlegm. The sonnet sequence/cycle was frequently used during the Renaissance (Sir Philip Sidney. The tradition survived into the 18th century.
studied the mechanics of planetary motion and formulated the law of gravitation.D.-65 A. For Hobbes. Publius Cornelius (55-120 A. Petrarch: Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374).” A fundamental problem for Hobbes is that of the foundation of the social and political order. Seneca. greatly influenced by Hobbes. Lucius Annaeus (4 B. the initiator of the revival of the study of ancient Greek and Latin literature. politics. John (1632-1704): considered the “father” of English empiricism. Ecclesiastical and Civil (1651). whose conceptions were profoundly influenced by the development of physics and mathematics. which was central to Enlightenment thought. religion. Locke studied medicine. author. Italian poet and humanist. Thomas (1588-1679): materialist philosopher. According to him.): Roman philosopher. the “body politic” created in perfect analogy with the “body natural” of “that rational and most excellent work of nature. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 29 . Locke insists on the mutual obligations of the individual and the instituted authority. whose concise and trenchant style inspired 17th century English prose writers. insists on man’s perfect freedom in the state of nature. made important discoveries in the field of optics. Form and Power of a Commonwealth. It is fear of death. humanity in the state of nature is driven by aggressive competition. Locke. but he was interested in a variety of intellectual fields: philosophy. or the Matter. of the first treatise of ancient philosophy. Man. for instance.): Greek philosopher and naturalist. that determines man to surrender part of his natural rights to the authority of a civil government. ethics. Both Hobbes and Locke can be seen as the initiators of the “social contract” theory. in a kind of social contract. must guarantee man’s natural right to liberty and life. unlike that of Hobbes. and Hobbes describes this generalised state of war by the famous formula “homo homini lupus” (“man is wolf to man”). the laws and regulations of human society imitate the laws of nature: the “great Leviathan” is the State. mathematician. He laid the foundations of the differential calculus. Isaac (1642-1727): English physicist. the instinct of self-preservation.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • on rhetoric and style provided a model of eloquence in prose. His political philosophy. the latter. astronomer and philosopher. economics. Hobbes applies rationalist-materialist principles to the explanation of human nature and society. besides the Characters.): Roman historian and statesman. Hobbes. and man’s agreement to submit to a governing authority is an expression of that freedom.C. Locke was a firm supporter of the Glorious Revolution and of constitutional monarchy. Newton. Theophrastus (372-287 B. Tacitus. writer and statesman.C. and his political doctrine inspired the American constitution. In his work of moral and political philosophy Leviathan. chief figure of the scientific revolution of the 17th century.D.
Cowley. Cornelia. 9-32) 2.T. Herrick. Pope. clarity and straightforwardness of the Augustan style. English Literature and Civilisation.4. 2003 (pp. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1.2. Pope.T. Gray the epic: Milton metaphysical poetry: Donne. Luminiţa Elena.T. The Literature of the Beginnings.F SAQ 5 • • • • • • • SAQ 6 In general.3. 1983 (pp. Dryden. . Blake the ode: Marvell. Marvell. d. 5. Editura Universităţii Suceava. Milton the pastoral: Milton. the sonnet: Shakespeare. there was a tendency towards simplicity. Milton. 3. Fielding. John Vanbrugh). Carew. 6. The English Eighteenth Century. The Novel in Its Beginnings. c. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Sir George Etherege.). Herbert. Preda. Dryden.F. 4. 115-141) 30 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1 SAQ 3 • • • • • • • • • SAQ 4 1. precision. John Gay Further reading 1. Marvell satire: Dryden. 8. Macsiniuc.T. Goldsmith. Cowper romantic comedy: Shakespeare dark comedy: Shakespeare tragi-comedy: Shakespeare.T. even extravagant style of the Renaissance to the simple elegance.F. 7. Goldsmith.F. 7-49) 3. Pope didactic poems: Pope philosophical poems: Pope descriptive-meditative poems: Thomson. Thomson. from a highly rhetorical style to forms of expression which aspired to the plainness of common speech. Duke of Buckingham. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 3. 6. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. Goldsmith comedy of manners: the “Restoration Wits” (George Villiers. 2.T SAQ 2 a. concision and plainness: from the highly ornate. Turcu. William Wycherley. b. Donne. Ioan-Aurel (ed.T. 5. Sheridan sentimental comedy: Steele. 2003 (pp. Cumberland burlesque comedy: George Villiers.T. 2. Fletcher and Beaumont satirical comedy: Ben Jonson. Collins. 4. Sir George Sedley. artificial.T.F.
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.3.2. 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. 2.9. 2. 2. 220.127.116.11. 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 .18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.2.The late Renaissance and the Baroque UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE Unit Outline 2 2. 2.3. 126.96.36.199.6. 2. 188.8.131.52.2.8. 184.108.40.206. 2.2. 2.3. 2.2. 2. 2. 220.127.116.11.1. 2. 2. 2.5.3. 2. 2.3.4. 18.104.22.168. 22.214.171.124. 2.10.3.
Elizabethan England also witnessed an explosion of creative energies in the field of letters and arts. well-ordered universe. idealism and confidence gave way to a growing sense of disorder and violence. Renaissance England reached the climax in its flourishing. with its sense of confidence and optimism. The Elizabethan age: the English high Renaissance Features of the high Renaissance spirit 32 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The vision of a harmonious. to the perception of man as a bundle of contradictions and the view of the universe as threatened by instability. Increasingly prosperous and powerful owing to colonial expansion and economic progress. but the outstanding achievements of writers like Thomas Kyd*.1. The former expansiveness. The spirit that dominated this age was typical of the Renaissance. Philip Sydney*. High Renaissance English literature has its most accomplished expression in Shakespeare’s work. the sense of tradition as a guarantee for order. The emergence of the baroque sensibility The early and high Renaissance* in England developed under the Tudor monarchs*.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. to scepticism. during whose reign England developed into a strong. 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. this spirit declined under the pressure of certain historical events* and cultural tendencies. Under Queen Elizabeth I. In the late Renaissance. Christopher Marlowe*. anxiety and even pessimism. and Edmund Spenser* complete the literary picture of the glorious Elizabethan Age. stable and modern state.
the tragic divisions in man’s soul.1. the Baroque displayed a sharp consciousness of life’s ephemerality.2. Characteristic of the baroque spirit are the sense of ethical relativism and the exploration of the borderline between truth and illusion. ornamental rhetoric and preference for convention and artifice. the extensive use of paradox. for excess. the difficult – often irregular – rhythms. life and death. The Baroque displays attraction to obscurity and melancholy. a tendency commonly associated with the baroque is represented by the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. irony and ambiguity. Even the Elizabethan dramatists cultivated elements which announced the Baroque.1. to the macabre. its sense of form. reason and superstition. contrasts with the baroque taste for the extravagant. Characteristic baroque themes were those of life as dream and life as theatre. splendour. The Jacobean and Caroline drama* is essentially baroque. with its abundance of bloody deaths. and. of confusing or transgressing limits. capable of rendering its 33 Revenge tragedy Metaphysical poetry Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but his great tragedies belong not only chronologically to the Jacobean age: as embodiments of the baroque spirit. The best examples are Thomas Kyd’s revenge tragedy. nothing reflects better its emergence than drama. In lyric poetry. and Christopher Marlowe’s characters. grandeur. but also to pomp. The Renaissance celebrated Nature and life with its joys.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. Paul’s Cathedral in London (16751708): an example of baroque architecture 2. The unexpected. St. proportion and symmetry. the paradoxes and contrasts which make up man’s mixed nature. in literature. sensualism and mysticism. on which the “show” of life must end. both in its themes and motifs. destroyed by the monstrous excess of their ambition.1. the concentration of expression in their poems stand in contrast with the Elizabethan smooth and orderly patterns of versification. refinement and cruelty. they are the supreme dramatic achievement of late Renaissance. with the tendency of breaking proportions. 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.” these poets distinguish themselves by the ingenuity with which they force the limits of language. wisdom and madness. and not properly forming a “school. or the world as stage. striking imagery. Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry The essence of the baroque sensibility is conflict and tension. Although very diverse. Shakespeare’s early comedies and history plays* are Elizabethan in spirit. and in its dramatic conception. the spectacular and the sumptuous. of man’s limitations and the inevitability of death. The baroque vision of experience of the Metaphysical Poets required a new kind of poetic language. The Renaissance cult of rational order.
and it is appealing simultaneously to the sensibility and the intellect of the reader. R: celebration of life’s joys B: 3. you will be acquainted. Othello and Macbeth) and his last romance play. In the following two subchapters. R: vision of the world as harmonious and well-ordered B: 2. 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. exuberance B: Compare your answers to those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. read again the preceding subchapters. 34 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . with the two most relevant accomplishments of the late Renaissance English literature: William Shakespeare’s great tragedies (Hamlet. Metaphysical poetry blends passion and reason. respectively. The Tempest. King Lear. sense of form B: 4. at the end of this unit. R: confidence.The late Renaissance and the Baroque complexities. If there should be major differences. as well as some of the metaphysical poems of John Donne and Andrew Marvell. classical balance. complicated feeling and analytical detachment. R: cult for order and symmetry. as expressions of the baroque spirit of the age. optimism.
but his enduring preeminence has been insured by his extraordinary insight into human nature. jealousy. his deep understanding of humanity. aspirations and interests. Shakespeare’s genius. The richness and profundity of his comprehensive creation establish him as a universal genius. A whole human universe inhabits Shakespeare’s plays. which brought him enormous success during his lifetime. These plays may be seen as strongly influenced by the emerging baroque sensibility in their themes. devotion. as well as in the tragic grandeur of the inner conflicts that they portray. hate. motifs and imagery. Shakespeare modulates the language in each play. His characters emerge from the dramatic situation with an unsurpassed force of conviction. envy.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. According to the dramatic necessity. In Shakespeare’s whole work. In his last period of creation (1608-1611). all mastered with supreme art. romantic or trivial. from the variety of his work. A wide range of feelings. and experiences are given dramatic shape in his plays: love. rendered accurately in their poetic truth. all of them are re-workings and adaptations of subjects taken from a variety of ancient. so that it displays a similar variety. among other features.2. struggle for power. 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 . friendship. in which every character – major or minor – has a consistent individuality and is animated by passions. when his artistic maturity and depth of vision produced his four monumental tragedies: Hamlet (1601). Othello (1604). He was a master of every contemporary dramatic form. Shakespeare’s whole work is a synthesis of the concerns and convictions of the Renaissance. and a culmination of its literary art. states of mind. sometimes even trivial. and the range of his subjects is extremely diverse. sublime or burlesque. language. loyalty and betrayal. and a perfect adequacy of the language to the character’s moral nature and to the dramatised experience or emotion. Italian. 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.” Shakespeare’s work is conventionally divided into several phases. and French. conflicts. His inventiveness and imagination were invested not in the intrigues. in the great blank verse* soliloquies*. irrespective of the register in which they are conceived – tragic or comic. King Lear and Macbeth (1605). moral attitudes. transcending the artistic hierarchy of his age and consecrating him as always “our contemporary. or periods of creation. etc. Shakespeare had a natural instinct for the stage. It ranges from the sublime accents of pure poetry. but in the creation of characters and the exploration of their mind and heart. search for truth. in plain. craftsmen or servants. medieval and contemporary sources – English. gratitude and ingratitude. to the prose speech of simple folk. They are always credible. The beginning of the 17th century is also the beginning of his second phase (1600-1608). where the lyrical and dramatic elements are in perfect fusion.
by the chaos arising from the corruption and collapse of values. but they deal. 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. are also tributary to the spirit of the Baroque. with the consequences of imperfect knowledge and self-blindness. read again the preceding subchapter. with innocence and vitality triumphing over evil and death. In these plays. If they should differ significantly. of which The Tempest (1611) is the crowning achievement. The issues that are explored dramatically in Shakespeare’s later tragedies reflect the spirit of uncertainty and increasing scepticism of a baroque age.1. with the effects of evil on innocence. 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. What does Shakespeare’s greatness consist in. common in the Renaissance.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The last period: the romance plays tragedies. with the restoration of order. 2.2. with the sense of hope overcoming spiritual desolation. as far as his approach to character is concerned? 2. in no more than 4 lines / 40 words each: 1. He is concerned here with the paradoxes in the relationship between reality and appearance. but he adds to it philosophical and ethical implications of the deepest significance. between truth and falsehood. basically. SAQ 2 Answer the following questions. His romance plays. The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s tragedies Shakespeare’s tragedies preserve the pattern of the “fall of princes”*. at the end of the unit.
as he now sees in her only another embodiment of woman’s frailty. and with the immense burden of revenge. 2. The enlargement of meaning through consistent patterns of imagery running throughout each play.3. Upon his return to Denmark from his university studies. Sent on a diplomatic mission to England. In another scene. the intensity of poetic expression – especially in the soliloquies – are features that rank these plays highest in the whole history of the genre. the first in this series of masterpieces. sensitive and idealistic. Hamlet feels all his certainties destroyed. the masterful treatment of highly complex characters. generous and brilliantly intelligent. Hamlet: a revenge play In Hamlet. when Fortinbras. required by his dead father. that he had actually been poisoned by his brother. It is in these four great tragedies that Shakespeare gives the full proof of his artistic genius. who suspects him of aspiring to take his throne. bringing in the prospect of renewal and of the restoration of order. he kills Polonius. Shakespeare deals with his great tragic themes in the frame of a revenge tragedy. has drowned herself. Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility Hamlet has been seen as the embodiment of the ideal Renaissance prince – refined and cultivated. mistaking him for Claudius. Hamlet escapes a criminal plot set up by Claudius. Young Hamlet is thus confronted with the horrors of fratricide and incest. In spite of this bloody outcome. His Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 37 . with a poisoned sword. old king Hamlet. During the play. In order to find confirmation for the ghost’s story. Polonius is the father of beautiful Ophelia. the play ends on a note of hope. takes over the rule of Denmark. Hamlet learns that Ophelia. and continually delays the act of revenge.The late Renaissance and the Baroque natural order of things or if it betrays the indifference of Nature – or God – towards man. who was now the new king and who had married Gertrude. a courtier. who had really gone mad. young prince Hamlet learns from the ghost of his recently dead father. rejected by Hamlet in spite of their mutual affection. absorbed more and more by his consciousness of the paradoxes of his difficult task of exposing the truth. Laertes. At one point. brave. accepts Claudius’s treacherous plan of killing Hamlet during a duel. Claudius’s guilty conscience betrays him. Hamlet hides his terrible grief behind the mask of madness. in the confusions of the final scene. which represents a similar scene of murder. he has the occasion to kill Claudius. but refrains from doing it as the latter was in prayer. the widow queen. Claudius. Sir Laurence Olivier in Hamlet (1948) 2. the Norwegian prince and glorious military hero. Hamlet arranges a play to be performed at court. Confronted with the moral corruption around him. Her brother. all the main protagonists find their death.2.2.2. but the plot escapes their control and. Back to the castle.
read again the preceding subchapter. What is the essence of this divided view? Formulate your answer in the space left below. His effort to see beyond the veil of illusion. from the Reader contains a short meditation on man and the universe. The sign of this confusion is the typically baroque motif of Hamlet’s madness.4. In Hamlet’s tormented soul.2. If they should differ significantly. Madness becomes the refuge of the sensitive conscience from moral chaos. in which all the values on which he had relied have lost their meaning. is eminently a philosopher’s effort.The late Renaissance and the Baroque new consciousness that “something’s rotten in Denmark” plunges him into a nightmare. 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.1. as well as the indicated fragment. 38 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and this makes him now aware of the ironies and ambiguities inherent in the discrepancy between what is and what seems. 2. his obsessive quest for truth and certainty. at the end of the unit. Hamlet: the philosopher vs. revealing Hamlet’s dualistic vision. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. the man of action Hamlet’s penetrating spirit has discerned a reality of human nature that he had not suspected. Compare your answer with the suggestions offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 3 Text 2. which is only partly dissimulated. It allows the hero to take distance from the corrupt order of the “prison” that Denmark has become for him.
to believe him a traitor and usurper. the Earl of Gloucester. if there is a purpose for its existence in the world of man. a bastard. and the Fool’s comments. whom he disinherits. Cordelia. through paradox. He is also accompanied by the faithful Earl of Kent in disguise and by the Court Fool. 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 . of truth and illusion. of setting right again the “time” which is “out of joint. son of Lear’s loyal supporter. another “fall of princes” tragedy. Hamlet’s introspective.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The delay of Hamlet’s revenge his incapacity to act. Edgar. The storm scenes in the play contain the highest symbolic concentration. who deprive him of all prerogatives and turn him out of their castles. The motif of madness. questioning side is exacerbated by the irruption of evil in a universe that he had thought well-ordered. like that of blindness. there is madness in nature itself. which hide much wisdom under the appearance of playful nonsense. on the other hand. both of them prove to be the loyal. are skilfully brought together and create a new ironic dimension in the play. is closely linked. the quest for higher meanings. as his father has been deceived by his other son Edmund. like Lear’s daughter Cordelia. Lear becomes the victim of the ingratitude of his two elder daughters. which helps him endure his suffering. as in Hamlet. after his eyes have been put out for having helped Lear. King Lear: the madness of tragic grief King Lear. which has been interpreted in innumerable ways. and.” 2. His intellectual energies are now concentrated in his search for the meaning of the ultimate questions of life and death. an outburst of violence which evokes to Lear the cruelty of his daughters. Edgar. exiled Lear wanders in a terrible storm in the company of Edgar. Tragically. who is disguised as a lunatic beggar. Maddened with grief. is also an exile from his own family. and he is thus reunited with his son without knowing it.5. unconditionally loving ones. The storm outside matches the storm in Lear’s hurt soul. Lear’s own madness. he is wondering: “Is there a cause in nature that makes these hard hearts?” Edgar’s disguised madness. to the themes of knowledge and self-knowledge. Hamlet feels overwhelmed by the real task that he is called to fulfil. in reality. Goneril and Reagan. Disappointed by the reticence of his youngest daughter. which would not undo the past. is the victim of a staged play of appearances. which is that of restoring a lost order. marks in fact a growth in his moral understanding. 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. These explorations become more important than the technical matter of revenge.2. Lear strives to understand the roots of evil. of human suffering. The earl of Gloucester joins them.
a brave and honest general of the Venetian republic.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Evil as destruction of the “natural” order unnatural acts which violate this order. Scene from Othello. To be or to seem: Othello Evil coming from those who are naturally closest to us is intolerable. Othello is thrown into the terrible agony of suspecting that beauty and innocence might disguise corruption. Evil is that which destroys Nature. Othello. Desdemona. is led by Iago to believe his wife. and the tragic disaster shows how the play of appearances can dissolve firm moral opposites like truth/lie. unfaithful. the bond of a love marriage is the frame in which Shakespeare explores the theme of evil in connection with that of appearance vs. The noble protagonist. 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).2. and this destroys his confidence in a moral order. Claudius’s fratricide and the cruelty of Lear’s daughters are transgressions which turn the tragic hero’s world upside down. evil succeeds precisely because of the perfection of Desdemona’s purity and Othello’s trusting nature. With his mind poisoned by a false evidence of Desdemona’s infidelity. painted by James Graham (early 17th century) 40 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Othello kills her and takes his own life when her innocence is proved to him. In Othello. As a result of Iago’s manipulations. faithfulness/betrayal. In Othello. and its outburst is always accompanied by the awakening of the tragic hero’s consciousness of the divorce between seeming and being. 2. acting against it. innocence/guilt. essence.6.
kinsman and guest. the horror of evil is amplified by the fact that the protagonist’s crime is committed against Duncan as his king. invaded by “horrible imaginings” and hallucinations. disorder. illusion and truth. a brave and worthy general in Duncan’s army. The effects of this sacrilege against Nature are devastating. 2. The hero’s exacerbated introspective tendency makes him postpone action. Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience In Macbeth. which constitutes a violation of the natural (therefore moral) order. since it accompanies the hero’s revelation of the discrepancy between appearance and reality. paradoxically.2. “Our country sinks beneath the yoke. who has a trusting nature. Persuaded by his wife to hasten the fulfillment. and unmotivated violence and cruelty. Read them carefully and fill in the indicated space with the right title(s). arranging the murder of all those who might threaten his power. but. at the end of the unit. to 2. kills the sleeping king and takes the throne. Macbeth’s ambitions are inflamed by the prediction of three witches that he shall be king of Scotland. and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds. There is “no sweet oblivious antidote” to cure Lady Macbeth’s “diseased” mind either. The theme of evil is dramatised as a crime against the bonds of blood.7. you need to revise subchapters 2.2. at the instigation of his wife. / It weeps. innocence and corruption. If any of your solutions should not correspond. he multiples his crimes.2. The protagonist. underlining the theme of knowledge. is manipulated into confusion about truth and falsehood.6. ____________________ Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. one of Duncan’s sons.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.2. it bleeds. The baroque motif of madness is. 1. ____________________ 2. Macbeth’s conscience soon starts accusing him. ____________________ 5. ____________________ 3.” The imagery* of disease is extended to the protagonist’s conscience. The evil reverberates in the whole land: in the words of Malcolm. and she is destroyed by the unbearable Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 41 . The storm scenes intensify symbolically the hero’s tragic sense of confusion. ____________________ 4. Macbeth.
42 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 5 In Act II.The late Renaissance and the Baroque burden of sin. and he meets his punishment in the final battle.2. in no more than 120 words / 12 lines. If there should be significant differences. scene 2. 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. Text 2. His words to Lady Macbeth render his first thoughts after the murder.” heard immediately after he has committed the murder? What does sleep represent for Macbeth here? Answer in the space left below. Macbeth joins his wife after he has killed Duncan. reveals how soon the abominable crime has begun to work on his spirit. extracted from this scene. How can we interpret Macbeth’s hallucination about the voice crying “Sleep no more. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. Macbeth’s heroic strength of will enables him to survive the terrible inner torments. who ends up by losing the belief in any meaning of life. read the fragment once more. from the Reader. / Macbeth does murder sleep. from which the ultimate relief is suicide.
the pronounced elements of the supernatural. involving the shipwrecked characters. the jester. the sense of a benevolent providential design. The Winter’s Tale. a drunken servant. who. the shipwreck. marvelous. 43 John William Waterhouse: Miranda –The Tempest (1916) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and his supernatural powers have given him control over both the natural elements and the spirits. has turned him into a slave. In its opening scene. duke of Milan. One of these sub-plots involves the courtiers: Antonio persuades Sebastian to kill his sleeping brother. Trinculo. 2.2. Alonzo. but his plan is prevented by Ariel’s music. are encouraged by Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the rule of the island. respectively –. His acts of magic are fulfilled through Ariel. They may also be described as romance plays. Three lines of action develop. the long journey.2. usurped by his brother Antonio and forced into exile twelve years before. king of Naples. on which he lives alone with his daughter. Miranda. In a plot-line that parallels and parodies the latter. We soon find out that the storm and shipwreck have been magically provoked by Prospero. and The Tempest – are described either as tragi-comedies or as romance plays. Shakespeare’s last plays Shakespeare’s four plays belonging to his last period of creation (1608-1611) – Pericles. the choice of a remote setting.g. Alonzo. Another sub-plot brings together Ferdinand and Miranda. who instantly fall in love with each other. Sebastian and Ferdinand – Alonzo’s brother and son. and certain themes and motifs (e. They mix serious and comic action. the fairy-tale atmosphere. magic. of exile and return). or tension and suspense followed by happy reversals – features that make them tragi-comedies. After the tragedies. The Tempest (1611). his faithful spiritservant. the last expression of Shakespeare’s mature genius. while for physical labour he uses Caliban. their plots contain characteristic ingredients like dangers which are finally avoided. the theme of loss and recovery. separated from each other in various parts of the island and all believing the others dead.8. as well as other passengers.9. a storm wrecks the ship carrying Antonio. myth. and Sebastian. The plot of The Tempest Of these four plays. Caliban hates and fears Prospero. He had long studied the arts of magic. Prospero is the former and legitimate duke of Milan. by his powers. owing to the improbability of the action.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. a creature whose beastly nature is beyond Prospero’s attempt of educating him. these plays offer patterns of reconciliation and positive solutions to life’s contradictions. is considered the finest. to take his throne. Cymbeline. It is also in these last plays that Shakespeare’s dramatic imagination relies to a greater extent on symbolism. the master of an island.
the scholar-magician.” claiming his throne. in Ferdinand and Miranda civilisation and nature are united in their most innocent forms. At the opposite pole.” who can be controlled only by the art of magic. Prospero’s project acquires a wider dimension through the union of Ferdinand and Miranda. one of Shakespeare’s most fascinating creations. at the end. or of the wickedness of the servant turning against his master. the control of intelligence over nature. he regains his authority and learns again the arts of power. His act of forgiveness is the highest demonstration of princely power. 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. who reveals himself to them as “the wronged duke of Milan. In the final act. The power of innocence to redeem evil and restore order and the values of humanity is another important theme. 2. “neglecting worldly ends. Ariel. assumes a certain responsibility for his own dethronement: absorbed in his studies.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Prospero’s initial plan had been revenge. he learns.10. Evil is not absent in The Tempest: there are echoes of Shakespeare’s previous plays in the motif of the usurping brother planning murder. now. The grossest instincts of human nature and a fundamental viciousness are symbolically embodied in the grotesque figure of Caliban. who now repent. represents pure spirit. a “thing of darkness.” “on whose nature / Nurture [i. more importantly. The theme of power Ariel vs.2. education] can never stick.” he had also failed to see his brother’s true character. he has a change of heart and sees in the union of the lovers a possibility of reconciliation and of a new beginning. the personification of Prospero’s imagination. to master himself. Prospero plans a safe return to Naples for the wedding of Miranda and Ferdinand. While Caliban and the plotting courtiers and servants demonstrate that both nature and society are capable of corruption. Ariel is commanded to bring all the characters before Prospero. and then to Milan. Major themes An important theme in The Tempest is that of the nature of power. He forgives his treacherous brother and those involved in his usurpation. and it is significant that this act is accompanied by his decision to abandon his magic. Caliban Innocence vs. Prospero.e. but. and to return to the world in his full humanity. influenced by Ariel. On the island. evil Elizabeth Green – Ariel: The Tempest (1922) 44 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . for the emergence of a regenerated world.
by teaching him to speak. extracted from The Tempest.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 6 Read Text 2. Caliban answers that the only benefit of being able to speak is that he can now curse Prospero.. or in developing self-identity. for instance. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit.4. more carefully. If there should be major differences. of the role of language in acquiring knowledge. scene 2. Formulate your answer in 150 words / 15 lines. Act I. Prospero reminds Caliban that he did his best to raise him from his animal condition. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Full of resentment. read the fragment again. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 45 . What implications can you find in their exchange of replies? You may think. Here.
Ariel – illustration to the 1873 edition of The Works of Shakespeare 46 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but an important symbolic ingredient in its major events. Shakespeare’s last masterpiece seems to suggest that if life is transient like a theatre performance. Symbols in The Tempest Several symbolic elements contribute to the treatment of the themes in The Tempest. Another pervading symbol is that of music. then at least man should strive to discern in it. The title itself points to the importance of the symbolism of the sea-journey.” The sea-journey Music 2. and prevents the wicked plots of both the courtiers and the drunken servants.2. The sea-journey and shipwreck are the symbols of a “sea change”*. is frequent in Shakespeare’s plays. The playmetaphor. Music is not only a necessary element in the spectacular quality of The Tempest.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.2. The whole play insists on the idea of spectacle. music suggests harmony and the power of the spirit to purify human nature. of performance. In opposition with the convulsions and dangers of the tempest. This emphasis on spectacle and its power to reveal truths by its illusion constitutes a baroque element in The Tempest. 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. whose magic art controls every incident.11. sublimating its primitive energies.12. Prospero also needs “some heavenly music” to accomplish the final act of his plan. and it even contains (like Hamlet) a play within the play: a masque* performed as a celebration of Ferdinand and Miranda’s engagement. It is through music that he calms down the fury of the waters. suggests the victory of life over death and of spirit over the elemental power of nature. Even Caliban seems to be responsive to the “sounds and sweet airs” of the island. manipulates the characters and prescribes the ending. order and harmony. The play-metaphor The action in The Tempest is practically managed by Prospero. the association of life with the insubstantiality and briefness of a theatre show. a profound spiritual transformation and growth. and it is constantly associated with the magic actions of Ariel. which “delight and hurt not. comforts Ferdinand’s despair when he thinks his father dead. The miraculous survival of the ship’s passengers. the same features as those of the Renaissance aesthetic ideal: beauty. or to impose upon it.
but each of them. Prospero intends to use his magic power and supernatural knowledge in his regained authority as duke of Milan.9 to 2. of which three are false. T F 5.2. applied to certain poets of the early and mid-seventeenth century. at the end of the unit. A baroque feature of The Tempest is the emphasis on the theatrical quality of the action. revise subchapters2.2. and this makes them both masters of metaphysical wit. T F 7. staged and managed by Prospero through his magic art. T F Make sure your answers are right by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. except that of terrifying him.12. Ferdinand and Miranda represent the innocent young generation capable of renewing Prospero’s former world. Their styles are different. 2. Two essential symbolic elements contribute to the development of the theme of regeneration: the sea-journey and music. combines an outstanding intellectual brilliance with lyric grace. T F 2. John Donne and Andrew Marvell illustrate best the baroque sensibility of the 17th century in their themes and expressive strategies. T F 3. The contemporaries referred to their poetry as “strong lines. 1. T F 4. T F 6. The betrayal of his brother and the plotting of the courtiers on the island were severely punished by Prospero.3. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false) for each sentence. in his own way. was first intended to bring discredit on them.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 7 Let us remember a few things about The Tempest. If any of your choices should be wrong. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 47 . You must find them among the following statements. The metaphysical poets The term metaphysical.” and many disliked its cultivated difficulty. The power of music has no effect on Caliban. 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.
which is developed through the exploitation of an image in all its possible implications.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.1.3. Irrespective of the kind of experience they endeavour to render.2. argumentative quality. a metaphysical poem is not a piece of abstract thinking. Starting with the last decade of the 16th century. The thought goes hand in hand with the feeling. which was in fact the expression of a new spiritual context. as well as in ordering and mastering intense emotion. A poem in this tradition is usually focused on an idea or line of argument. As extended comparisons. “More matter and less words” 2. The reader is expected to approach such a poem with an active mind. and the emotions involved. but also his reason. The metaphysical conceit The poetic device by which such opposites are brought together and reconciled is the conceit. or discovery of occult [i. Dr. and to unify diverse and even discordant aspects of inner and outer reality into a single experience. that the poet detaches himself from his own feelings in order to better understand and analyse them.” as “the most heterogeneous ideas yoked [i. all metaphysical poets are self-conscious and analytic. and which blended expressive conciseness with density of meaning. writers had to face a new exigency. linked. The impression is that this experience. as “a combination of dissimilar images. secret] resemblances in things apparently unlike. The main features of metaphysical poetry are concentration and logical coherence. often extended by the use of hyperbole* or oxymoron*. which starts from a comparison. from a most ordinary circumstance. is contemplated from a certain distance. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Discordia concors 48 . Characteristics of metaphysical poetry Metaphysical poetry displayed a new quality of writing.e.” Conceits were effective instruments in developing an argument and in rendering complication and subtlety of thought. hidden. and almost always such a poem starts from a very personal situation. This is an elaborate figurative device. which helps the poet to develop his subject. By means of conceits. meant to surprise and delight the reader by their wit*. conceits were abundant in Elizabethan dramatic and lyrical poetry. a demand for “more matter and less words. regardless of the subject of the poem. and a blend of the commonplace and the sublime.3. a metaphor or an analogy. to bring not only his imagination and emotion into play. but metaphysical conceits were far-fetched* comparisons.e. united] by violence together. Samuel Johnson* was to describe (in 1779) the kind of wit which characterised a metaphysical conceit as discordia concors*. the poet was able to reconcile contradictory states of mind and feeling. with patterns of rhythms closer to those of spoken language than to the requirements of literary tradition. There is always a connection between the abstract and the concrete. In spite of its logical. a cold intellectual exercise. by the ingenuity with which they forced the perception of similarity in the most unexpected elements.” A new kind of poetry emerged.
Use the space left below. at the end of the unit. in poems belonging to John Donne and Andrew Marvell. In the following subchapters. and created a style which had the vigour and liveliness of colloquial speech. the same blend of ingenious reasoning and intense passion. In the treatment of both themes. Two important themes in his poetic work are love and faith. and the same realistic force. and a highly original one. and 2. He rejected the regular versification of Elizabethan poetry . the two most outstanding representatives of this poetic trend in the 17th century. revise subchapters 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 49 . ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Each answer should not exceed 2 lines / 20 words. Donne displays the same sophisticated wit.3.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 8 Order the main aspects describing metaphysical poetry into four essential features.3.3. If they should differ considerably. you will look at some famous examples of metaphysical conceits.1.3. 2. and both are explored in the whole richness and variety of their possible experiences. and which confers dramatic realism to his poems. Themes in John Donne’s poetry John Donne is one of the most influential poets of the 17th century. its decorative use of classical mythology. pastoral* conventions. and allegory.2.
3. unattainable lady and enjoy the pleasures of sensuality.” their separation must be seen in analogy with cosmic disturbances (“the trepidation of the spheres”). in which the speaker brings all his argumentative skill in support of his attempt to convince the woman to accept physical intimacy. His love poetry is revolutionary in its rejection of the Petrarchan* conventions of courtly love*. as this would be a triple “sin. dealing with profound personal feeling and emotion from the distance of intellectual argument. when accompanied by genuine feeling. are however harmless to man. A famous poem celebrating shared love is A Valediction*: Forbidding Mourning.” “tear-floods”). he pleads that she should abandon the intransigence of the chaste. This is a seduction poem. sometimes speaking frankly of his erotic desire. 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. and often emphasising the need for mutual love. he resorts to the extravagant identification of a flea that has bitten both of them with their “marriage bed” and a “marriage temple. The poem celebrates the stability and comfort of a secure relationship. in which the lover tries to persuade his mistress not to cry at his imminent departure. according to which woman was always an unattainable ideal. Their superior love is founded on spiritual union and is not dependent on physical presence for its survival.” In fact. Donne adopts a wide range of tones and attitudes. Donne’s love poems In his love poems.4. and all that the faithful lover could hope for were symbolic rewards and favours for his constancy and humble submission. These are conceits which illustrate the preference of the metaphysical poets for analogies between the macrocosm and the (human) microcosm. may afford an experience of the transcendental.” He tries to persuade his mistress not to kill the flea. Another powerful example of Donne’s use of logical argument in a poem about love is The Flea. in which their blood is now mixed. Mingling the trivial with the mystical sublime. beautiful. though greater. and he seems to amuse himself. but. which. Crying over their separation would bring to mind an analogy with earthly disasters (“sigh-tempests. carrying the lover’s witty arguments to their logical extremes. He also suggests sometimes that physical union. Donne is highly playful in this poem.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. Donne changes this conventional vision of love. from cynicism and playfulness to passionate sincerity and the celebration of both physical love and spiritual union. Donne’s rejection of the Petrarchan tradition A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning The Flea: seduction and wit 50 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . their love being so great and “refined. shocking the reader by the unexpected analogy developed in the central conceit (the flea as symbolic marriage bed). sometimes presenting woman as inconstant and unfaithful. Chaste. The various comparisons and analogies by which he describes their love function as arguments in his plea. superior – woman was an object of never fulfilled desire.
Explain the surprising analogy that he makes in order to speak about mutual love. Read the poem again. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 9 Read Donne’s poem (Text 2. in the Reader).. Here.6. as well. Formulate your answer in the space left below. If they should differ significantly. which explains what a metaphysical conceit is. paying special attention to the last three stanzas.3.2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 51 . at the end of the unit. you need to revise subchapter 2. in no more than 18 lines / 180 words. he develops one of his most famous conceits.
gives this sonnet a particular dramatic intensity. as if suggesting that the experience of erotic union is the only way of understanding our relationship with God. in the exercise of reason. These poems usually display contrary impulses. Donne’s religious poems Donne’s baroque sensibility is evident in his love poems in the tension between conflicting. Actually. Donne’s focus is on his deep sense of sin. comparable to that of Shakespeare. in which the delight in witty logical argumentation. Satan. which parallel those in his love poetry. divine judgement. on death. paradoxical aspects of the experience of love.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. in which the poet expresses his deep need for a close relationship with God. in which the poet’s desire to abandon himself to God’s love is rendered through paradoxical images. in his religious poems the mystery of faith is often explored in erotic terms.3. Tension and paradox are also explored in his religious poems. on the paradoxes of freedom and captivity. The insistence on violence and struggle. which makes him a prisoner of God’s enemy. one of Donne’s nineteen Holy Sonnets. He fights against his own sense of sin and guilt. If love is often a holy mystery for Donne. Batter My Heart Portrait of John Donne (1572-1631) (author unknown) 52 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .5. this need is expressed by means of several conceits. between idealised passion and erotic desire. In Batter My Heart. Donne’s religious poems often develop an analogy between sexual love and divine love. resurrection and salvation. of loyalty and betrayal. for the divine saving grace. In his religious meditations in verse. clashes with the poet’s scepticism that the mystery of faith can be penetrated intellectually. The most eloquent example is the sonnet Batter My Heart. between the need for permanence and the need for variety.
2. Donne suggests his contradictory. the greatest of political poems in English literature: An Horatian Ode* upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland (written in 1650). representing Donne’s sonnet Batter My Heart. In the last six lines. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 53 .7. 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.6. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. living through the turbulent years of the Civil War*.5. Andrew Marvell combines in his poetic work the sophistication of metaphysical wit with the elegance and grace of classical forms and attitudes. Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode The last of the metaphysical poets. Marvell left. This meditation on political conflict and national history is impressive by its clarity and controlled variations of tone. and read the poem again.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 10 Read Text 2. If there should be significant differences. revise subchapter 2. As a Puritan* patriot. according to some critics. paradoxical feelings by means of a conceit which exploits metaphorically the contrast between marriage and rape.3. Three major themes can be detached from his poetry: love. from the Reader.3. at the end of the unit. and love of country. nature.
to change the form of ruling power). in this respect. is On a Drop of Dew. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Carpe diem 54 . in which the speaker develops an ingenious argument in order to persuade his mistress to give up her coyness [i. in contrasting colours.3. Gifted with a sharp sense of observation of natural detail. On the other hand. The carpe diem* motif was popular in Renaissance poetry. His nature poems have usually a mystical tendency. lest it grow [i. The theme of love in Marvell’s poetry Of Marvell’s love poems.3. 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. reveals thus its symbolic dimension to the poet’s contemplative mind. 2. The speaker’s argument opposes the “deserts of vast eternity. Marvell often sees. in which both of them act according to a divine order. He showed a deep love for the countryside. Marvell does not portray Oliver Cromwell and his opponent.e.7. King Charles I Stuart. shyness] and accept his passionate love. On a Drop of Dew 2. behaving with royal grace in his last minute. The most illustrative poem. a masterpiece of metaphysical wit. It is a seduction poem. anticipating the early Romantic attitude to nature. pictured with remarkable precision.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.” and finally dissolves itself “into the glories of the almighty Sun. Although loyal to the Puritan cause. and thus he can find reason to praise both of them. What begins as a nature poem is extended into a religious poem by means of a metaphysical conceit.” associated with his mistress’s preference for a prolonged courtship. developed then into a complex analogy with the pure Christian soul and its relation with earth and with heaven. which illustrates the poet’s skill in combining the playful and the serious. the most accomplished is To His Coy Mistress. Marvell emphasises the dignity with which the defeated king met his fate.e. which begins with a most accurate description of a dew-drop on a rose petal.” whose visible beauties are the key to spiritual truths.e. however.8. for fear that it might grow] impure. Nature as “mystic book” Another side of Marvell’s poetic personality is illustrated by his nature poetry. these details as emblems of a transcendent reality. but Marvell’s poem extends it into a meditation on time. He rather sees the events and the fate of the two rulers in the context of a providential history. Just as the dew-drop is “trembling.” so the Christian Soul denies the earth and its “impure” pleasures. A natural detail. on the scaffold. as if Nature itself were a “mystic book. and many of his poems reveal his delight in the contemplation of rural nature. aspiring to union with almighty God.
8. What are the main ideas corresponding to these three steps? Formulate them succinctly in the space left below. after revising subchapter 2.The late Renaissance and the Baroque to the imperative of conquering time by the intensity of sensual enjoyment. which has the structure If…. Do not exceed 12 lines / 120 words in all. Love.8. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 55 . Love can suspend the inexorable laws of nature. If… But… Therefore… Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. it can arrest the inevitable course towards physical extinction by a moment of ecstatic pleasure. SAQ 11 Read Marvell’s poem To His Coy Mistress (Text 2. but…. If the difference is considerable. then (therefore)…. is presented as the only way of transcending our mortality.3. in the Reader). paying attention to the logic of the argument. in its sexual fulfillment. read the poem again. more carefully.
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
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.
● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Renaissance Baroque paradox scepticism tragedy romance play play-metaphor metaphysical poetry conceit discordia concors
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
• 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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The late Renaissance and the Baroque
• • • • • • • • • •
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
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
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”).
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
) SAQ 9 The poet associates mutual love with the way in which a pair of compasses works. which organises and “manages” intense feeling and emotion. Perfect circles (symbolising perfect love) may be traced by means of the compasses. 3. “Sleep no more” anticipates the torments of Macbeth’s conscience. and the horrible crime has immediate effects on his conscience. King Lear. Hamlet. 4. 2. As “chief nourisher in life’s feast.g. this hallucination proves Macbeth’s strong imagination.” sleep (i. 2. is a suitable emblem for their souls. passion and reason. through language (knowing his “own meaning”). analytical detachment from emotion 4. SAQ 7 1. 5. “The innocent sleep” is the symbol of moral integrity. T SAQ 8 1. of his own sense of self. which remain perfectly united. By 60 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Othello. which he resents. He thus expected Caliban to overcome his primitive impulses and to develop more civilised tendencies (“purposes”). Hamlet. endowed with speech. As a truly superior being. This instrument. use of conceits (extended comparisons.g. unexpected. T. 6. which would have enabled him to communicate (e. he failed in his effort to enlighten Caliban. however. of a clean mind. the abstract and the concrete. F. 4. usually between highly dissimilar elements. F. King Lear. From Prospero’s point of view. complicated line of argument. to blend contraries (e. Prospero seemed also to think that Caliban could be socialised through speech. surprising associations) 3. SAQ 6 Prospero might have better controlled Caliban in his “brutish” state. the development of conscience.e. T.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 4 1. he chose to raise Caliban to the condition of a rational creature. guided by rational will. made of two moving legs articulated at one end. 5. From Caliban’s point of view. He is not a cold-blooded killer. by keeping one foot fixed and moving the other round this centre. King Lear SAQ 5 In the first place. led to his awareness of his condition as a slave. even if physically the lovers must be apart. 3. concise expression and density of meaning 2. attempt to reconcile contradictory or discordant experiences. 7. Hamlet. because the latter’s nature was hopelessly evil. innocent conscience) is part of the natural order of man’s existence. 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”). Othello. etc. make his purposes known through words). F. T. unable to find peace once it has been corrupted by evil.
But. 1983 (pp. since only worms will “enjoy” it.” so there is always the certainty of reunion for the lovers. The only way out of his loveless “marriage” to sin is a “divorce. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. the metaphor of the speaker’s “marriage” to God’s enemy suggests his sense of sin. instead of letting it devour us slowly. Paradoxically. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. 267-283. He loves God. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Further reading 1. your virginity will then be worth nothing. 34-40.The late Renaissance and the Baroque analogy. in fact. David. just as the mistress. so let us devour Time with the intensity of our desire. SAQ 10 Marriage is associated with love.). I would spend ages in praising every part of your body. vol. 302-305) 3.. Daiches. Penguin Books Ltd.” Depending on the distance from the centre to the circumference. Ford. English Literature and Civilisation. A Critical History of English Literature. because your charms deserve such praise. consent and legality. will long for him. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). however.). 273-287) 2. the poet’s love depends on the certainty of his mistress’s faithfulness and constancy: “Thy firmness makes my circle just. 97-105. 130-140) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 61 . 246-249. in the absence of joy.” which only God can effect. which would restore the purity of his faith (being “chaste”). Therefore let us enjoy each other while we are still young and you are beautiful. the inclination of the fixed leg may vary – it seems to “lean after” the moving leg. SAQ 11 If we had time enough and the world were all ours. while rape presupposes the violation of one’s will. Taking him by force – by the force of the divine grace –. But I know time is merciless. but the implication is that his will and reason are too weak to defend his faith. 1991 (pp. and which would resemble rape. as the moving leg will “come home” and join its “twin. Preda. 3. 1969 (pp. Your own passion “transpires” in the blush of your skin. The speaker tries thus to persuade his mistress of his own constancy of feeling. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. your beauty will fade and my songs of praise will have no object when you lie in your grave. God would set him free for a complete experience of religious devotion. waiting for her departed lover. vol.. Boris (ed. Ioan-Aurel (coord.
2.3.4. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.4.4. 126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52. 3.2. 3. 3.5. 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 .1.The works of John Milton UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON Unit Outline 3. 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.6.4. 3.1.2. 3.5. 3.3. 184.108.40.206. 220.127.116.11.4. Unit objectives The Works of John Milton Milton. 3. 3. 3. 3.5.1. 3.2. 3. 3. 3.
he went on a trip to Italy. the author of a work which represents a highly original synthesis of Renaissance humanism*. the greatest epic poem in English literature. mathematics. theology. geography. 63 John Milton (1608-1674) A man of impressive learning The Puritan patriot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . as a publicist. etc. His enormous learning. and for almost twenty years he served their ideal of a truly reformed England. religious and civil debates of his age. and he dedicated long years of study and preparation to his accomplishment as a creator. Greek and Hebrew. Milton had from an early age the conviction of his poetic vocation. 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. Milton. which exerted a huge influence on many generations of poets. politics. he continued to read intensively. written in English and in Latin. religion. In 1638. and his acquaintance with the great artistic achievements of that country and with prominent personalities enriched his education and contributed to his erudition. the Christian humanist Milton is one of the most prominent figures of the 17th century. and the course of his literary career was consistently marked by his involvement in the political. etc. His education was eminently that of a Christian humanist. At Cambridge (1625-1629). accumulating an impressive knowledge in a diversity of fields (e. the freedom of the press. such as education. He devoted himself heart and soul to the cause defended by the Puritans*. he studied Latin. family.). Milton’s enduring reputation is ensured by his masterpiece. he approached a diversity of subjects. recommended him for the office of Latin Secretary to the Council of State. baroque* vision. as well as his moral inflexibility. He returned to England when the troubles which were to lead to the Civil War* started. Christian faith and classical formal perfection. Paradise Lost. In his prose essays and pamphlets*. music.1. and he made up his mind about his own position in the conflicts that agitated his country. rhetoric and the great works of the classics.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. He lived and created in an age of historical turbulence and profound change. After that.g.
Milton follows Ovid in the emphasis on sensuous enjoyment. as it is also an ambitious assertion of Milton’s own literary birth as a “poet-priest. in the perfect integration of classical allusion and pagan mythology with Christian spirituality. he started to move away from themes and concerns which were defining for the classicist spirit of the Renaissance. and he was perfect master of a variety of styles. As a poet. Milton places emphasis on the dignity of agricultural labour and the 64 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . etc. However. which are in fact complementary: L’Allegro [“the cheerful man”] and Il Penseroso [“the pensive/melancholy man”]. With the Restoration*.2.1. In some of them. who. L’Allegro describes a day – from morning till sunset – in the life of the cheerful man. in the treatment of the theme of love and the use of Greek mythology. Milton’s early poems Milton started writing poetry very early. Milton’s first important poem in English on a religious theme was written in 1629: On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity. by his aspiration to be a Christian epic* poet. or the two sides of the poet’s soul.). approaching the great religious themes that enabled him to assert his genius. to whose excellence he aspired to rise. They deal with contrasting moods of poetic inspiration. In the Sixth elegy. and his first notable poems were seven Latin elegies*. His models were the great Greek and Latin poets (Homer*. for instance. which already displayed the ambivalence in Milton’s poetic identity as both Christian poet and classicist humanist. in the optimism and exuberance accompanying the contemplation of reviving nature. is in touch with divine secrets. with its pastoral delights. but Milton did not complete his plan. Virgil*. 3. On the other hand. He sought inspiration in biblical mythology. but his maturity and experience enabled him to bring to fulfilment the most important part of his poetic work. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso To Milton’s long years of preparation for the fulfilment of his vocation belong also two poems. This poem was intended as the first in a series about the significant moments of the Christian year. Ovid*. these two sides are usually kept apart in these poems. the Nativity Ode* is a landmark in his creation. like a priest.2. Milton’s Christian humanism consists in this fusion of classical form and Christian themes. However.The works of John Milton The Christian humanist poet a position that he occupied from 1649 until 1660.” The Latin elegies The Nativity Ode 3. celebrating the birth (the “nativity”) of Christ and its inauguration of a new order for humanity. As his poetic personality gained in self-confidence. the pastoral* image of the shepherd becomes a metaphor for the poet-priest engaged in the exploration of high Christian themes. in these poems Milton appears highly preoccupied by his poetic vocation. Milton wrote with the same ease and grace both in English and in Latin. his political hopes ended. As in other poems.
In Il Penseroso. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 65 . Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in Il Penseroso. b. If your choices should be wrong. c.The works of John Milton satisfactions that it offers.e. revise subchapters 3.” contemplative mood. b. 3. In the latter. In both poems. the diversity of subjects in his prose essays and pamphlets. 2. In each poem. the integration. The final part of Il Penseroso expresses the poet’s aspiration of attaining visionary power. The secular* pleasures of common life. in L’Allegro. gives way to the mystic exaltation of the poet-student listening to religious music. the poet hopes to hear “more than is meant to meet the ear” – i. the crowing of the cock. 1. at the end of the unit. with its simple pleasures. he expects to discern in the heavenly notes a spiritual truth. to master a variety of styles. are complementary poems about poetic inspiration and creative moods.” in which the studious poet finds the gratification of intellectual experience. and 3. The diurnal activities and the cheerfulness of L’Allegro are replaced here by the nocturnal peace and quiet of the “lonely tower. the song of the milkmaid) contrasts with the deep. c. to rival the classics in his perfect mastery of Latin. celebrate the diurnal pleasures of pastoral life and its activities. there is a strong emphasis on music. There is both parallelism and contrast between the two poems.2. Are Milton’s first poems in English which deal with a Christian theme. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso a. his constant preoccupation with his own poetic becoming. in his poetic work. the poet emphasises the blessings of the “pensive. b. Milton’s Christian humanism is reflected in a.1. to become a great epic poet of the Christian age. but the “natural” music of L’Allegro (the song of the lark. you will thus review some aspects of Milton’s literary personality. polyphonic sounds of the organ. and on the happiness of rural life. appropriate mythological allusions contribute to the creation of the atmosphere. of classical erudition with biblical themes. c. SAQ 1 Make the right choice to continue each of the three beginning statements. Milton’s literary ambition was a.
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. and they were either testimonies of personal experience and feeling. in his determination to carry on with his task and do each day’s work: “Tomorrow. Milton’s sonnets Milton revived the tradition of the sonnet*. 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. to fresh woods and pastures new. preparing himself seriously for becoming a priest. Lycidas – a pastoral elegy In the same year with L’Allegro and Il Penseroso (1637). personal manner. Irrespective of their nature. Confronted with the tragic inevitability of death. which had known a period of decline since the Elizabethan age*. the shepherdpoet’s consolation is in his own sense of purpose. again.3. in two of his sonnets he reveals these anxieties in a direct. or occasional and complimentary compositions. 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. The death of a promising young man makes the poet meditate on existential problems. 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. and the end of the elegy brings in a note of personal confidence. representing both himself and his dead mate as shepherds. The elegy Lycidas. Milton’s sonnets demonstrate a remarkable flexibility. written at the death of a fellow-student at Cambridge. variety and originality in the use of this poetic form. Milton composed another poem in which. Milton adds a contemporary Christian relevance to the classical pastoral convention when he reflects on the corruption of the church. he defines his poetic ambition in terms which are both Christian and classical-humanist. 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. The death of the dedicated young man.2. He wrote sonnets intermittently throughout his life. not on earth. Milton’s concern with his poetic fulfilment 3. 66 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The works of John Milton 3.2. The lamenting poet finds comfort in the thought that the soul of the dead friend is now with God. in a heavenly pastoral world.
he admits. The life of study and leisure that the poet had been leading was a period of prolonged apprenticeship*. and that the passing of the time will eventually confirm if he is destined for glory. as King of Heaven.3. angels). and confronts the evidence of a “late spring. Lamenting the loss making his political and religious views known in a series of influential of his eyesight essays.The works of John Milton 3. they have been fortunately able to prove their maturity at the right time. Patience – a Christian virtue – teaches him that God is served not only by actions.1.2.” By this time.” 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. in which the accumulation of knowledge was meant to create a solid foundation for his future great work. light denied?”). it does not matter if this task is fulfilled soon or late. by the acceptance of one’s fortune – of God’s “mild yoke. in another poem of this kind (Sonnet XVII). but also by Christian humility. God: the poet’s “great taskmaster” 3. A sad biographical circumstance increased Milton’s anxiety in this respect: he was going blind. he had asserted himself as a successful publicist. that.” to carry out the task in such a way as to make his achievement count in eternity. To prevent such a complaint. Since for God time is in fact eternity (“All is…as ever” in God’s eye). In the first part of the sonnet. but he had not fulfilled his great poetic promise. 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. He has reached the age of twenty four. with a certain sadness. Patient and dignified waiting for God’s will to be fulfilled is also a way of serving Him. in 1652. Milton’s eye-sight was definitively compromised. he must admit.e. that the unfolding of his poetic destiny is not only a matter of time. other young men have demonstrated “inward ripeness. confessing his temptation to ask. and the theme of blindness was to accompany the great themes of his coming masterpieces. patiently. written in 1631. If he is to transcend time by literary fame. Sonnet XVII After almost twenty years. The only thing that matters is that he should have “grace to use it so. As a Christian poet. Milton was still invoking Patience to avoid the anxiety caused by his feeling of “unripeness. Milton meditates on his loss of sight. but of God’s eternal will. foolishly: how can God expect him to fulfill his task if He has decided to make him blind? (“Doth God exact daylabour. at his age. but finds consolation in his faith in Providence. Milton laments the passing of his youth without any sign of poetic ripeness. he Paradise Lost to commands “thousands” (of spirits.” “mean or high” as it may be. since. Sonnet VII In Sonnet VII (“How soon hath time”). In Sonnet XVII.” that they are “timely happy spirits”. who carry out the divine his daughters will. When he wrote Sonet XVII.3. Milton has the strong sense that his poetic accomplishment is a task imposed by God (his “great task-master”). i. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 67 .
Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Milton began the composition of his masterpiece in 1657. If there should be significant differences.1. he expected the inspiring Muse to compensate for his physical blindness with a 68 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . This formal pattern usually corresponds to a certain thematic structure. What is the common thematic development in these two sonnets? Your answer should not exceed 8 lines/80 words. read again subchapter 3.4. which in Sonnets VII and XVII is the same. completing it in 1665 and publishing it in 1667. Read these sonnets (Texts 3. paying attention to what their octave and sestet deal with.2. when he was already blind. the passages stored in his mind were transcribed after his dictation.” He had always dreamed of reaching the stature of the great epic poets that were his models – Homer. Virgil. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The works of John Milton SAQ 2 Milton adopted the form of the Italian sonnet. respectively. and the two sonnets. His blindness was no obstacle – as he advanced in the composition of the poem. and of leaving to posterity an undying work. and it represented the fulfillment of his ambition to write an epic which would be “doctrinal to a nation. Paradise Lost was the fruit of long years of preparation and meditation. and he worked at it over several years. As the several Invocations in the poem suggest. Dante* –. in the Reader). 3.3. at the end of the unit.2. made up of two sections: an octave (an eight-line stanza) and a sestet (a six-line stanza). and 3.
is presented as a necessary moment in the “Eternal Providence*”.e. Incapable of accepting the thought of submission and of his imprisonment in Hell. brought about by his disobedience. the creation of the world and of man. in which man’s fall. Finally.” and the central theme of his poem is that of felix culpa* – the fortunate mistake. predestination*. Milton’s ambition was.4.” as he anticipated in Il Penseroso. in fact. which is never ornamental. The twelve books which make up Paradise Lost unfold an impressive epic action. The “lost Archangel. the fault with The Felix culpa happy consequences. and of Adam and Eve Lost from Paradise. (divine) love and (Satanic) hatred. and his loss of Paradise. the poem develops an implicit debate on such contraries as freedom and tyranny. enemy]” who “holds the tyranny of Heaven. Milton approached in his grandiose epic problems which provoked heated polemics in his time. Starting from the dualism good/evil. Its Christian frame absorbs and integrates Milton’s astonishing learning. Then the reader is plunged into the middle of the action: the fallen angels in Hell. of many possible subjects for his capital work – subjects inspired either from British or from The subject and biblical history. Milton had thought.” forever deprived of the glory.The works of John Milton more penetrating understanding of spiritual truths. These problems may be summarised by the alternative freedom vs. 3. an evil which is turned to good in God’s overall plan for the history of creation. 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. knowledge and ignorance/innocence. Satan is determined to wage “eternal war” to his “grand Foe [i. obedience and rebellion. declares his hatred against God and his intention to regain Heaven. He interprets poetically the biblical events. accumulated throughout his life. over the years. are gathered to listen to Satan. but his erudition. he decided on the subject of the Fall – the theme of Paradise double fall. is subordinated to the poetic intensification or clarification of the main theme. the greatest synthesis of the Western literary tradition. happiness and peace they had enjoyed in Heaven. whose main moments are the fall of the rebel angels. to “illumine” what is “dark” in him. as he stated in the opening Invocation.” He suggests to his followers that their “work” should no longer be done by force – since that is the attribute of the Almighty –. His work is encyclopaedic. original epic scenario. man’s temptation and fall into sin.” full of the bitterness of defeat. etc. “to justify the ways of God to men.1. with the poet’s invocation of the Muse. of Lucifer* from Heaven. Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The poem begins in conventional epic manner. burning in the “darkness visible” of those “regions of sorrow. but by Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 69 . in theme a daring. and thus to enable him to attain indeed to a “prophetic strain. Paradise Lost defines Milton best as a Christian humanist.
Pandemonium*. to find the weakness of man and to seduce him to join their party. Man’s sin of disobedience must be punished justly. Milton displays here at his best his gift of evoking vast spaces and general chaos.” and to make them transgress God’s interdiction of tasting the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. cunning]. 3. Divine justice and mercy Book IV: Satan’s arrival in the Garden of Eden 70 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The accepted solution is to reach the new world created by God.2. His voyage through the great gulf separating Hell from Heaven. The corruption of God’s creation was thought better than any kind of revenge. Satan. i. 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. whose setting is in Heaven. knowing in advance that Satan will be successful in his attempt to “pervert” man. and He commands His angels to adore and celebrate man’s Saviour and “universal king. surpass] hellish hate.” Meanwhile. concentrates the doctrinal argument of the poem. the “wild abyss” governed by Night. whose splendour is described more effectively through Satan’s jealous eyes. assumes the danger of trying to break free from the formidable prison of Hell. and their discussions are rendered in Book II.e.4. the overwhelming discord of the elements of a yet uncreated world. the ascension from darkness to the light of his “native seat” – now forbidden to him –. is rendered in one of the most highly poetic passages in the poem.e. and so “Heavenly love shall outdo [i. and plans to “excite their minds / With more desire to know. The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Book III. by virtue of his leading position. and he flies away. explains to His Son the reason for his allowing this to happen.” He thus anticipates the moment of the Temptation.The works of John Milton The council of the fallen angels “fraud or guile [i. set him free from sin. God. to seek the newly created Earth. He contemplates with envy the beauty and the innocent happiness of Adam and Eve. God’s Son offers to pay this price for the reconciliation of man to his heavenly Father. in which his success was due to deceit and dissimulation. and the only way to satisfy divine justice is a sacrificial death that would redeem man. Chaos and Chance. The fallen angels are all called to a council in Satan’s infernal palace. Satan is prevented from carrying out his design by the angels guarding Paradise.” God anticipates the event of His Son’s incarnation.e. Satan has reached the Garden of Eden. death and resurrection.
read again the text. If there should be major differences.4. more carefully. which contains God’s justification for allowing man to fall. What is God’s argument. and what are its implications? Answer in no more than 15 lines/150 words.The works of John Milton SAQ 3 Read Text 3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 71 . at the end of the unit. in the Reader. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
The six days of the biblical Genesis are developed by Milton into an impressive poetic vision. Milton displays an extraordinary evocative power.” He explains to Adam that true wisdom lies in the desire to know those things which directly concern one’s own being. visits Adam in Paradise to warn him about the danger from Satan.” for the evocation of the making of the world. and about his perfect happiness in the company of “divinely fair” Eve.” and that this happiness depends on his free will. It is interesting that. not before repeating his warning. and. The idea of Good coming out of Evil is central to Paradise Lost.” Man himself was created as a “better race. after the defeat of the rebel angels. he tells him about his own experiences after he was created. and most evident in the treatment of the fall of Adam and Eve.3. The creation of the world Raphael also tells Adam the story of the creation of the world and of man. Raphael’s warning to Adam In Book V. and its impulse was God’s desire to create “good out of evil.e. as this diminished W. and he explicitly warns Adam: “remember. 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.4.The works of John Milton 3. and in the description of more familiar details of earthly Nature. both in the large-scale description of the making of celestial bodies or in the sublime picture of the primal waters. Raphael tries to restrain Adam’s curiosity about “things above this world.e.” Raphael leaves them. in the multitude of its phenomena and living forms. Adam admits that. Satan. so that he may know more about his enemy. space]” left by the fallen angels. Adam asks Raphael to tell him the story of the fallen angels.” and reminds him that obedience to his Maker means enjoying the present happy state. In Milton’s interpretation.4. without aspiring to know things above his power of understanding. He draws Adam’s attention that God has made him “perfect. instigated by Lucifer. the “divine historian. the angel Raphael. innocence and “virgin modesty. in Milton’s poem. Blake: The downfall of the his own power and pre-eminence. sweetness. Raphael once again advises him against trying to penetrate the secrets of the “great Architect. In Book VIII. in order to prolong his guest’s visit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural The divine creation: Good coming out of Evil 72 . the divine creation took place after the fall of Lucifer. King Anointed*”. sent by God. 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.4. not immutable [i. with her “absolute” loveliness and grace. Adam is grateful to Raphael.” to fill in the “vacant room [i. and wishes to know more about the celestial motions. The rest of Book V and Book VI are a retrospective account of the war in Heaven. whose pride had been hurt when God proclaimed His Son the “Messiah. and fear to transgress!” 3. that cannot change].
in the Reader presents. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. more carefully. the first moments in the creation of the world: the making of heavens and skies. 1794) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 73 . read the fragment again.7. What does Milton suggest by the image of God using his “golden compasses”? Answer in the space below. at the end of the unit. through Raphael’s words. Blake: Urizen as the creator of the material world (from the poem Europe. W. A Prophecy.The works of John Milton SAQ 4 Text 3. and the “Spirit of God” infusing life into the primal ocean. If your answer should differ significantly from the offered suggestions. in no more than 10 lines/100 words.
most subtle*] beast of all the field. flattered by his praise of her “celestial beauty. Eve is amazed at the miracle of a beast capable of speech and. Their former innocent sensuality is now replaced by guilty lust and the feeling of shame. but he regains the strength of his hate and appears to Eve (1808) her in the splendid shape of the Serpent. suspicion. their inward the fall on Nature peace.4. for a moment. her argument wins: she is willing to put her innocence to trial. since the “link of nature” is so strong between them that he cannot imagine living without her. W. while Adam tries to convince her that together they would be more safe from harm. and all The effects of Nature is in pain. Book IX: Eve and the Serpent (illustration by John Martin. At last. discord” – which make reason and will helpless. Credulous Eve tastes from the forbidden fruit and tries to convince Adam that its effect is not to open the way to “evil unknown. Adam and Eve have a difference of opinion: Eve insists that they should divide their daily labour and work in different places. and.” Back to guarded Paradise in this disguise. Satan gives voice again to his torments and to his ambition of destroying God’s creation.5. 1827) 74 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . certain that the proud tempter will not be successful. the “subtlest [i. and all harmony between them is destroyed by bitter reciprocal accusations. is now troubled by the “higher winds” of negative passions – “anger. The seduction of Eve Book IX presents the great scene of Eve’s seduction by Satan. the thundering skies weep. Adam is chilled with horror at Eve’s irresponsible mistake but decides to share her fate. Meanwhile.e. The “calm region” of their state of mind. hate / Mistrust.The works of John Milton 3.” she is finally seduced by his promise of higher knowledge and by his assurance that there is no sin in such aspiration. he is disarmed by her Satan with Adam and angelic grace. Blake: Satan finds Eve alone.” but to “open eyes” and bring those who taste closer to the condition of a god. The disaster of the original sin shakes the foundations of the natural order: Earth trembles. whose spirit has entered the body of a serpent.
a. the consequences of man’s original sin are unfolded in episodes of great poetic and emotional intensity. He tries to introduce into Eve’s mind the doubt about God’s being “the author of all things. hoping to arouse her pride. He tries to dispel Eve’s fear of death. The world after the Fall In the next books. 75 Book X: the world open to Sin and Death Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . He tempts Eve with the promise of absolute knowledge. as God himself predicts: His Son. at the end of the unit. but. such as the building of a huge bridge across chaos by Sin and Death. _______ f. The sentences below describe various moves in Satan’s strategy of seduction. If any of your matches should be wrong. on a separate sheet. in the Reader contains four fragments from Book IX. at last. Write the number(s) of the corresponding fragment(s) in the indicated space. in which these moves are illustrated. He tries to awaken in Eve the spirit of defiance and insubordination. Match these sentences with the fragment.8. the whole assembly of fallen angels are temporarily turned into monstrous hissing snakes and dragons. the destined “restorer of Mankind*. He denigrates God. This emphasises the idea that Satan’s victory is not final. in the middle of this speech. but are terribly humiliated to find that they are tasting only dust and ashes. _______ d. _______ e. annihilate Sin and Death. 3.” _______ g.” is the one who will. _______ b. Satan’s victory seems complete. _______ c. read once more the indicated text and do the exercise again.6.4. by inciting her to disbelieve God’s threat. accusing Him of keeping Adam and Eve ignorant so that He may hold them in a state of servitude. or fragments. He tries to arouse Eve’s suspicion that God’s reason for His interdiction may not be man’s own good. at the end of each sentence. from the speech by which Satan tempts Eve into disobeying God and eating the forbidden fruit. but he also adds symbolic episodes. and he proudly boasts of it in the Pandemonium. Seduced by the illusion of the Tree of Knowledge. which will bring her close to the condition of God. they taste its fruit. He flatters Eve. Milton continues to expand moments of the biblical Genesis.The works of John Milton SAQ 5 Text 3. but His fear that His power might be weakened if His creatures equalled him in knowledge. _______ Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. which marks the conquest of the world by Satan.
pride. and offering to pay the price of His own death for the peace between God and mankind. The certainty that. asking God to accept their prayers and sincere repentance.The works of John Milton After the story of man’s fall. but of sadness. The promise of where the central episode is the promised birth of God’s Son. In Book X. from Heaven Before they leave Paradise. and He sends the archangel Michael to God decides Adam and Eve’s expulsion show them out. God sends Him to communicate the divine punishment to Adam and Eve. intemperance. but Michael comforts him. the emphasis on the presence and role of the Son of God increases. and the poem closes not on a note of despair. Michael shows Adam a vision of the future. faith and good deeds. 1827) 76 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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. Moments of the biblical history are unfolded before Adam’s eyes. etc. – to the hostility of Nature. who can see the “many shapes of Death” and the many ways that lead to it. an anticipation of the effects of the original sin on the following generations. The vision is replaced by Michael’s narrative in Book XII. changed drastically after Adam’s fall. Book XII: Adam and Eve leaving Paradise (illustration by John Martin. combining thus justice with mercy. evil will finally be turned to good makes Adam and Eve’s exile from Paradise more tolerable. the Son of God acts as a mediator between the sinful humans and His Father. death. Adam suffers deeply for the loss of his native place and of God’s proximity. his suffering. In Book XI. resurrection and ascension to the coming of Heaven. redemption*: Jesus. through Christ. but He decides that Adam and Eve may no longer live in Paradise.” founded on love. from man’s own vices – violence. God consents.
It may be argued.9.The works of John Milton SAQ 6 Text 3. however. 3. in the Reader represents the ending of Paradise Lost. at the end of the unit. which they fully assume. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The heroes of Paradise Lost Many critics have remarked the paradox that the heroic spirit of Milton’s epic is embodied in Satan. more carefully. that both Satan and the human couple are heroic – each in a different way in their endurance of the bitter consequences of their sin.5. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 77 . while Adam has more in common with a tragic hero. 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. If they should differ in major points. read the fragment again.
” Envy accompanies Satan’s thirst for power. This is why he is in a continual state of frustration and anger.” He instigates the other angels to rebellion in the name of freedom from servitude. From the beginning of the poem. 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. William Blake remarked that Satan is Milton’s most accomplished creation. in whom they saw an embodiment of the spirit of freedom and of resistance to tyrannical oppression. Before his fall. and that Milton gave the full measure of his literary genius in the character of Satan because he instinctively supported the idea of freedom. He is envious Envy and hate of God’s Son and His title as King of Heaven. “great in power / In favour and pre-eminence.” only the pain of longing and unfulfilled desire. which is itself a paradise. and he finds inner strength only in the intensity of his hatred. Pride is one of Satan’s most prominent features in Pride and ambition Paradise Lost. made happy in their innocent love. He displays majesty and grandeur even in his fallen condition. and his great ambition is “to reign. Satan appears indeed as a champion of freedom. and his extraordinary courage “never to submit or yield” inspires his followers. and his longing for the delights of his former existence torments him like an inner hell.” as he cannot help comparing their bliss with his own condition in Hell. the Romantic poets were to establish the view that Satan is actually the main hero. 78 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The works of John Milton 3.5. Over a century after the poem’s publication. but for him freedom does not mean equality: among the rebel angels. Satan seems to comfort himself with the thought that at least he is free. where there is “neither joy nor love. but he also knows that this freedom is a form of punishment. Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell The most fascinating of Milton’s heroes is undoubtedly Satan. he naturally assumes the role of a leader. In Hell. Satan knows how to inflame again their ambition of re-ascending and their thirst for revenge. he is envious of God’s omnipotence. “Imparadised in one another’s arms” – i. he had been the first Archangel. unwilling to serve a power that he considered tyrannical.e. since it is accompanied by suffering and torment.1. This sight is for him “hateful” and “tormenting. In moments when the fallen angels feel despair at having lost Heaven.
the destroyer of faith. he is the promoter of suspicion and doubt. His “immortal hate” makes revenge his only aim. but by the evil subtlety of his mind and the corrupting power of his word. The temptation of Eve is in fact the repetition of the earlier act of persuading the angels to join him in his rebellion.5.The works of John Milton 3. It is also with “persuasive* words. It is with “high words. Satan is The Tempter. The negative power of rhetoric: Satan the Tempter Gustave Doré: Satan (1870) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 79 .” seeming reasonable and true. 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. and “out of good still to find means of evil. Satan. As God’s absolute antagonist. and he invests all his titanic energies in his destructive plan.” He is “the author of all ill. Satan can assert his freedom of action only in the sphere of evil. Awakening in man the impulse to question. and his power of seduction comes from the mastery of a very efficient rhetoric. He is determined “to do ill” – which is “the contrary to his high will” – or to pervert the good done by God. Milton insists on the fact that they abandoned “the eternal splendours of Heaven” and followed Satan seduced by his promises of freedom and greatness. Satan’s greatness as a character comes from the sublime intensity of his negative passions. but the epic poet insistently underlines their manipulative intentions. that he determines Eve to break the divine interdiction. Satan represents the negation of the creative power of the divine Word: his revenge is accomplished not by force.” and the “Enemy of Mankind.” in whose destruction he finds complete satisfaction for his hurt pride.” which actually lacked substance that he manages to revive the courage of the depressed fallen angels. Satan’s speeches have an impressive convincing force.2.
at the end of the unit.5. in Hell.2. and read the indicated fragment again.” (6 lines /60 words) Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.) B. “A mind not to be changed by time or place. revise subchapters 3.The works of John Milton SAQ 7 Text 3.. in the Reader contains a part of Satan’s speech before his followers. 80 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His words reveal some of the defining features of Milton’s hero.1.3. and in itself / Can make a Heaven of Hell.5. a Hell of Heaven”? (Answer in no more than 4 lines/40 words. If there are significant differences. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven. Read the whole fragment carefully. “and “The mind is its own place. and point out what features of Satan’s nature are illustrated by the following lines: A. and 3.
there is not any doubt left about his fundamental evil.” but also “our credulous mother.” “our general mother. the titanic dimension of his suffering. There is a tragic combination of greatness and weakness in their portrayal. but W. He is now more aware of his freedom and his potentiality. gifted with reason – a divine Eden 1808) attribute –.” “Our Author. The consequences of their fall are great because their virtues – so tragically tested – are great. as well as his identification with them in their condition of creatures that have fallen. Adam’s enlarged understanding emerges in perfect fusion with his strengthened faith. Adam is called Sire* of Men.The works of John Milton 3. He is now able to understand God’s final purpose.e. precursor]. Blake: The expulsion from Milton deals with it as one of the central paradoxes of the human condition. ancestor.” The insistent use of the adjective “our” suggests Milton’s invitation to the reader to join him in his identification. He has the revelation of the grandeur of God’s plan and of the “goodness infinite” of the Creator. are set against Adam and Eve’s lamentations after the fall. of their wrong use of the freedom given by God. of understanding and accepting his limits. Although Paradise has become a forbidden place for them. Satan’s torments in Hell. of turning all evil into good by the supreme act of divine grace: the acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice for man. the sorrow of the fallen humans at their own weakness and their final recognition of their fault entitles them to God’s mercy. and Milton expresses both admiration and compassion for them.” “mother of human race. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 81 . Fallen man is not a hateful creature. The way in which Milton refers to Adam and Eve throughout the poem points out his reverence to the original pair. the character of Satan is Milton’s greatest achievement in Paradise Lost. While Satan’s pain is always accompanied by the proud defiance of God.5. But it is an evidence of Milton’s genius that. man has paid a terrible price for the wisdom of not imitating Satan.3. In his last conversation with Michael. Milton is the heir of the Renaissance in his glorification of man and his virtues. the protagonists of Milton’s ambitious epic leave it not in hopeless disgrace.” Eve is the “Mother of Mankind. he justifies “the ways of God to men” by showing the necessity of the divine grace. Created in God’s image. Both Adam and Eve display a certain Satanic fascination with the possibility of overcoming their condition through knowledge.” “Patriarch of Mankind. in spite of the fascination and seductive power with which he is invested.” “Our great Progenitor [i. in Book XII. but who can hope for redemption*. As a Christian. but armed with the wisdom of faith. but as a consequence of their wrong choices. deprived of worth. As a humanist. Milton depicts Adam and Eve’s fall not as the result of depravity. Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Poetically.
The works of John Milton SAQ 8 Text 3. Milton was deeply involved in the religious and political debates of mid-17th century. Summary In this unit. Compare your answer with that offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. you are recommended a more careful reading of the indicated text. in no more than 8 lines/80 words. Some of Milton’s earlier works display this obsessive concern with his becoming a great poet. the pastoral elegy Lycidas. he prepared himself for it during long years. at the end of the unit. Subchapter 3.2. presents some of his notable early compositions – the Latin elegies. Read this fragment and summarise its argument. the Nativity Ode. The same obsession with poetic ripeness may be found 82 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in the Reader.5. contains a fragment from God’s speech in Book III. a necessary part of His design. and the twin poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso. If there should be major differences. 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. you have been acquainted with some aspects of the prominent literary personality of John Milton. Convinced also of his poetic vocation. Devoted to the Puritan cause during the Civil War. one of the greatest English poets. in which he explains to His Son why the fall of man was inevitable.
the fall of man and the loss of Paradise. Adam and Eve are treated both with the typical Renaissance admiration for man’s potential and virtues. and with the Christian compassion for their unhappy choice. offers a brief presentation of the subject and structure of the poem. however. In Milton’s vision of the original sin. which interprets poetically key moments in biblical history and elements of biblical mythology. Subchapter 3.5.The works of John Milton in two of his sonnets. the most fascinating and complex creation is Satan – Lucifer in his fallen condition. in which divine grace will eventually turn all evil into good. apprenticeship: the training for a trade or for any kind of activity. at any time.4. presented in subchapter 3. and the promise of man’s reconciliation with God through the sacrifice of Christ. and the culmination of his poetic achievement as a Christian humanist. Satan is dominated by powerful negative passions which keep him the prisoner of an inner hell. Milton justifies the fall of man and his exile from Paradise in the context of a providential history. Milton’s impressive epic poem Paradise Lost (1667) is the fruit of his mature vision. the creation of the world and of man. Subchapter 3.” and its great Christian theme is that of felix culpa. put in the service of evil. which are. Undoubtedly. Milton emphasises his fortitude and strength of will. but also in which man may. 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. Civil War: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Baroque: see the Glossary in Unit 2. concerns itself with Milton’s heroes in Paradise Lost. The central events in Milton’s epic are the fall of Lucifer and of the rebel angels. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 83 . be tested for the responsibility which must accompany the exercise of his free will. as a sign of consecration or sanctification.3. The declared aim of Milton’s epic is “to justify the ways of God to men. His destructive energy represents a negation of the creative power of the divine word. his courage and majesty. his love of freedom.
The works of John Milton • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • elegy: a meditative poem lamenting the death of someone.-17 A. he is called Satan. or some tragic event. guided by Virgil and his idealised love Beatrice.). to whom are attributed the great epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey. 800 B.C. redemption: the deliverance (the rescuing) of man from sin through the incarnation. noise and chaos. the “great and good redeemer” (i. In classical literature. pastoral: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. The word may refer. Pandemonium: a word coined by Milton (from Greek pan: all. foreknowledge: knowledge of something before it happens. pamphlet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. difficult to detect (or analyse). suffering and death of Christ. to cause to believe).” After the fall from Heaven. every. secular: related to worldly things (as opposed to sacred). predestination: from a theological point of view. formerly used when speaking to a king. epic: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Gallery of personalities • Dante: Dante Alighieri (1265-1321). Ovid: Publius Ovidius Nasso (43 B. subtle: not immediately evident. Providence: God’s kindness.). persuasive: having the power or ability to persuade (i. the one who sets man free from sin). Homer: Greek poet (c. Restorer of Mankind: Christ as the one who will return (restore) man to God’s grace and to his original condition. Man’s sin/fault was “happy” because its reward was Christ. Purgatory and Paradise. the allegorical account of the poet’s journey through Hell. Roman poet. to convince.e. sonnet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Sire: a respectful term of address. humanism: see classical revival in the Glossary in Unit 1. It may also mean cunning. the range of subjects in an elegy was wider. and daimon: demon) – the place where all demons gathered. to a place of wild confusion. Puritans: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Lucifer: the name of the archangel who led the rebel angels. clever in using tricks. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. benevolent care or protection of his creatures.e. author of La Divina Commedia. the act by which God determines in advance the events and their course.D. not concerned with or related to religion. It means “the carrier of light. felix culpa: this phrase comes from a line in the Latin version of the Catholic religious service held on Easter Sunday. whose works include the poem on love Ars Amatoria and the poem on myths Metamorphoses. Italian poet. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 84 . ode: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.C. by extension.
with special attention to the indicated subchapters. Satan prepares himself to enter Paradise and to accomplish his diabolical design of tempting Eve.2. in Milton’s Paradise Lost. whose epic poem The Aeneid relates the experiences of Aeneas after the fall of legendary Troy.. Text 3.). God’s creation. one of the greatest Roman poets. It will be therefore advisable to revise the preceding unit.3. romantic in The Tempest –. Macbeth delivers his monologue immediately after he is informed about Lady Macbeth’s death.5. Texts 2.6. 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. the baroque motif of the theatrical illusion is developed. 40 lines/400 words should be enough for your answer (apart from the lines that you are expected to quote for illustration).2. 1. A revision of subchapter 3. Send-away assignment no. 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. before he firmly decides to carry out his evil plan. You will thus be drawing a portrait of Milton’s Satan. either with remarkable lucidity or blinded by his hate and ambition. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. at the end of the play. At the beginning of Book IV. • Read attentively this fragment.C. • What characteristic baroque theme do both fragments illustrate? Given the different context – tragic in Macbeth.. the paragraphs about Macbeth in 2. Prospero’s speech closes the representation given in honour of Ferdinand and Miranda. 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 . and thus of destroying man. in the Reader renders most of his memorable monologue. You will find it helpful to read again subchapter 2. and the last paragraph of 2. and 2.4. in which he explores his inner hell.The works of John Milton • Virgil: Publius Ovidius Maro (70-19 B.1. His speech reveals Satan’s tormented mind and the multitude of passions that agitate his soul. before the final battle. In both of them.1. Identify his conflicting feelings and the various thoughts that trouble his conscience. in the Reader represent short fragments from Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest. which reveals the complexity of Milton’s hero. what is the difference in the implications of the two play-metaphors? The answer to these questions should not exceed 25 lines / 250 words. 2. 1 This assignment covers Unit 2 and Unit 3.2.
SAA no. The fall of man. 3. or reason. 2. clarity. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. rational spirit of the Creator (he refers to Him elsewhere as “the great 86 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . i. however. since that would mean the “revocation” of His own “high decree” by which man was made free.c. but the consequence of evil influence. the “instrument” by which to exercise his free will. not God. • the coherence.. 1 will count as 10% in your final assessment.b. his blindness. The latter part of both sonnets (the sestet) changes the mood to one of patient confidence. SAQ 3 God’s whole argument is based on the idea of freedom. and reason makes man.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%. as man’s wrong choice was not the pure result of his free will. Milton emphasises the geometrical.a. 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. Both man and the rebel angels are “authors to themselves in all. in grading your paper. like that of the angels. Created “just and right. The poet places his trust in Providence. both sonnets deal with the theme of loss (the poet’s sense of the passing of time. comforting himself with the faith that his poetic destiny is in God’s hands.. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%).e. The paradox of freedom. the divine punishment is compensated by mercy (the sending of Jesus as mankind’s saviour). SAQ 2 In the first section (the octave).” man shared the perfection of the angels (“the Ethereal Powers and Spirits”) and their complete freedom of will and judgment. respectively) and with the anxiety that poetic fulfilment is late to come. responsible for his choices. is thus not attributable to God. God cannot use His infinite power and knowledge to prevent the errors of those who are free to choose. is that one may choose right or wrong. 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.” In the case of man. The implication is that God gave man conscience. Remember that.
2003 (pp. 4 SAQ 6 For Adam and Eve. 2. SAQ 8 God cannot be pleased with blind submission.e. 3.). c. Preda. guarded by fear-inspiring armed angels.. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. who draws a firm line between the formed and the formless (chaos). under the guidance of Providence. b.4. e. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. The Literature of the Beginnings. Further reading 1. comforting himself that he exchanged submission for sovereignty. 153-163) 3. to be dictated by Reason. with passive virtue. then it is like Heaven for a spirit that cannot accept constraints. 2. These lines suggest Satan’s formidable strength of will and the independence of his indestructible spirit. 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. Incapable of obedience to God. of human solidarity. Luminiţa Elena. SAQ 7 1. is meant to keep alive the memory of their transgression. A Critical History of English Literature.3. the intelligible and the unintelligible (the dark void). 1983 (pp. The same rational spirit separates what is vital from what is “adverse to life” (the “infernal dregs”). 1. 2. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). Ioan-Aurel (coord. 1. This line illustrates both his aspiration to complete independence and his ambition. i. as God has made him. and for him servitude in Heaven is the real hell. He wants man’s obedience to be the result of an act of free choice. Forced to look ahead. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. Daiches. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 435-449) 2. Satan is willing to exchange the happiness of Heaven for the torments in Hell. but at least they have the mutual comfort of their love. g. unless he is put in the situation of making choices.4. 141-152) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 87 . Turcu. SAQ 5 a. Their hesitant steps suggest their awareness of the difficulty of all choice. If God leaves man’s loyalty. His gift of Reason to man has no justification (it is “useless and vain”). Satan feels God’s absolute power as a limitation to his enormous ambition. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. It is his will and desire that give value to things around. unless he exercises his will and reason.The works of John Milton Architect”). f. and the image of the terrible gates. i. If Hell is a space of freedom. of the responsibility that accompanies freedom. Paradise is now a forbidden place. d. 1969 (pp. Man is not a free creature.e. English Literature and Civilisation. 2. vol. faith and love untested. David.
5. 4. 4. 4. 18.104.22.168. 4.4. 4.1. 4.1. 4.4. “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.4.2. 4.1. 4. 4.7.2. 4.4. 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 . 4.6. Gulliver.4.1. 22.214.171.124. 4.3.1. 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. 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.4.2.2. 126.96.36.199.5. 4.2 4. 188.8.131.52.3.4.3.The Restoration and the Augustan Age UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE Unit Outline 4. 4. 4.4. 184.108.40.206.
♦ identify the main concerns of literary Neoclassicism. its audience being restricted to the fashionable circles gravitating around the Crown. Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment In the heterogeneous literary picture of the Restoration. ♦ establish a relation between the spirit of Restoration comedy and the cultural-historical circumstances in which it emerged. ♦ 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. drama holds a place apart. Nature.1. and Jonathan Swift. was interrupted: Restoration theatre became almost exclusively a form of Court entertainment. and their re-opening in 1660. Restoration drama marked a clear split between popular and aristocratic standards of taste. with spectators no longer allowed to sit on it. under the influence of French theatres. Restoration drama The Restoration* was a period of significant social and institutional change. the cast of actors included women.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.1. it was a period of transition as well. the age in which the ideological premises of the Enlightenment were constituted. addressing itself to an inclusive public. The Puritans had closed theatres in 1642. and.1. clarity and elegant restraint. grandiose and extravagant in tragedies –. 4. Charles II Stuart (reign: 1660-1685) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 89 . Unit objectives 4. Alexander Pope. 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. the scenery became more elaborate – more “realistic” in comedies. ♦ explain the relevance of concepts like Art. ♦ describe satirical devices used by John Dryden. The Renaissance tradition of the theatre as popular entertainment. Significant changes took place in the theatre: the stage became closed on three sides. From a literary point of view. and of considerable diversity. central to the Neoclassic poetics of the Augustan Age. ♦ specify the main targets of satire in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. was attended by a strong anti-Puritan reaction. of increasing rationalism and secularisation. under the patronage of king Charles II. Human nature.
” reflecting the aristocratic ethos of the time. fashionable manners. The conception of character in Restoration comedy was indebted to the Renaissance comedy of humours*. or Court Wits. sumptuous costumes. although each in its own way and for different reasons. Another dominant dramatic form during the Restoration was the comedy of manners. above all. magnificent settings. an artificial. adultery. Restoration comedies dealt primarily with sexual intrigue and the pursuit of pleasure – including the pleasure of cynical manipulation of others. The highest achievement of this kind of baroque theatre was provided by John Dryden’s plays*. Restoration comedy was a mirror of the Comedy of manners environment in which it developed. and its audience was restricted to the exclusive and fashionable circles in London.1. A certain coarseness of feeling. and.3. lust. and satirised the aspiration of social climbing and the ideal of virtue and respectability of the middle classes. of incredible cruelty and perfidy. the 90 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and the characteristic theme was the conflict between love and honour.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Marriage and the games of love were a prevailing theme. Dominant forms in Restoration drama The main kinds of drama were heroic tragedy and comedy of manners. ending in Heroic tragedy the death of the hero or heroine or both and the triumph of honour. It made fun of the people from the countryside. ridiculing their crude manners and lack of sophistication. grandiloquent declamations and sentimental exaltation. The action was usually set in remote. Heroic tragedy* was a dramatic development from the epic poem. 4. both of them highly conventional forms. Sensational turns of situation. Gallantry. 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. and absolute villains. or in the survival of love over the criminal machinations of the villains. betrayal and mockery were recurrent motives in the comic plots of Restoration drama.1. exotic places. reflected the hedonism* and promiscuity encouraged at court by Charles II himself (nicknamed “the Merry Monarch” for his pleasure-loving way of life). jealousy. on the other. refinement and sophistication. Restoration comedy and its character types Restoration comedy was “class drama. and the plays of the Restoration Wits*.2. Conquest and seduction. wit*. The Puritan rigidity and austerity of the former period were repudiated. the cynicism. the licentiousness* and frivolity characterising Restoration comedy were accompanied by a cult for elegance. were essential for the true man of the world. on the one hand. The range of character types in Restoration comedy was very diverse. but they were loveless marriages and love affairs without warmth and affection. One of the most common types was the rake – the libertine. with characters conventionally distributed into fabulously valiant heroes and virtuous beautiful heroines.
the country squire*. Another frequent type was the fop*. or fool. Contrasting types were the coquette. pleasure-seeking. the ingénue. If characters were usually static. with several subplots and with action developing at a fast pace. whose simplicity and ingenuousness made her a perfect prey to the sophisticated seducer. more concerned for his reputation as a wit than for honour. Nell Gwynn (1650-1687). 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 . deliberately superficial in construction. but whose affectation* became the object of irony and satire. the plot of Restoration comedy was usually highly complicated.” without scruples. selfish and manipulative. who tried to imitate fashionable manners. despising marriage. whose generosity and kindness are satirised as weaknesses. etc. the scheming valet. young or old. and the trusting husband as dupe. lacking complexity. the lusty widow. cynical. usually an unprincipled and heartless married woman. Other common character types in Restoration comedy were the country girl. aspiring to the perfect adventure.The Restoration and the Augustan Age “young-man-about-town.
frivolity. Restoration comedy praised wit. read again subchapters 4. T F 6. T F 7. T F 2. His satirical play Love for Love (1695) deals with the contrast between public reputation and private behaviour. T F 9. The Restoration rake as a typical character in comedy was representative for the atmosphere of licentiousness. T F 3. Restoration theatre introduced professional women actors in performances. The main themes of heroic tragedy were seduction and the games of love. elegance. by doing the exercise that follows.4. such as the impoverished gallant.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 1 Let us revise some aspects concerning the Restoration drama.1. Restoration comedy built its plot on a single. T F 4. T F 5. a master of satirical comedy of manners Among the most representative authors of comedies during the Restoration period there were George Etherege*. William Congreve. and satirised clumsy manners and dull simplicity. T F 8.1. at the end of the unit. who resorts to all kinds of devices to avoid 92 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . simple action.1. hedonism and amorality at Court.1. The Renaissance comedy of humours inspired Restoration dramatists in their construction of dramatic character. It displays typical Restoration characters. 4. Heroic tragedy reflected the realities and spirit of the Restoration Age. Read the statements below and identify five true ones. If any of them should turn out to be wrong. to 4. 1.3. The middle classes and their moral code found a mirror in the comedy of the Restoration. extravagant stage settings and highly rhetorical language. The true master of Restoration comedy of manners was William Congreve (1679-1723). Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). refinement and sophistication. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The baroque character of Restoration heroic tragedy resided in its sensational plot. William Wycherley* and John Dryden*.
but they were now clearly intended for a middle class audience. A shift in taste was taking place in the context of social change – the rise of a prosperous class of merchants. involving a multitude of characters. the dramatic productions still preserved characteristic farcical elements and something of the brilliant artificiality of Restoration comedy. The new audience in the theatres. The rise of sentimental comedy* Congreve belongs to a period of transition in the evolution of comedy. perfectly aware of each other’s faults and playing various games which keep them on the border between independence and surrender. admiration. the pair of witty lovers. Drama was changing under the pressure of middle class taste. disapproved of the licentiousness of Restoration comedy. half-sad. mixed marriages between aristocracy and the newly rich. 4. consistent characters. restore his fortunes and win the love of his mistress. the awkward country-girl. The situation. and friendship to jealousy. and were not interested in the rituals and games of fashionable life or in the sparkling wit duels. It has a sophisticated plot containing several strands of action and centering on the relation between Mirabell and beautiful Millamant. when Augustan* England was seeking for social stability and cohesion. bringing it to perfection. which reminds of some of Shakespeare’s comedies. hate and disgust) give this play an equivocal tone. the ambivalent motivations and feelings (ranging from love. etc.The Restoration and the Augustan Age William Congreve (1679-1723) his creditors. as these were remote from their experience. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 93 . affection.5. Congreve’s finest comedy is The Way of the World (1700). psychologically subtle and complex. adopting a moralising tone and recommending virtue and sensibility above refinement and wit. is extremely complex. increasingly middle class. and it had to take into account the general concern for the improvement of manners that developed in the late 17th century. half-amused. and the shifting relationships and alliances. The indecencies and blasphemous spirit of earlier Restoration comedy became the object of severe condemnation by public opinion. with a rare concern for the accuracy and elegance of expression and for the balance of sentences. Congreve’s merit is to have turned stereotypical characters into credible. He gave grace to the conventions of a highly artificial form of drama. Towards the end of the 17 th century. the witty and resourceful servant. He is the most gifted of the Restoration dramatists.1.
but she accepts Mirabell's marriage proposal on certain conditions. at the end of the unit. which presents Millamant's demands.1. under the appearance of frivolity. However. read again subchapter 4. in no more than 15 lines / 150 words. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.. Millamant is also in love.4. in Act IV.. Read Text 4. who is sincerely in love with Millamant and wishes to marry her. 94 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural ." 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. In a witty dialogue. they establish and agree on the terms of a "contract. their agreement has serious implications. as well as the indicated fragment. they seem to be playing a game.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 2 In Congreve's play The Way of the World.1. If there should be significant differences. Mirabell is a reformed rake.
Oliver Goldsmith* and Samuel Johnson*. other great writers who were influenced by Neoclassicism or defended its doctrine were Jonathan Swift*. 4.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and harmony extended beyond literature. 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. His work doesn’t equal in variety that of his predecessor and master. His main critical work is An Essay on Dramatic Poesy (1668). of the elegant French classical drama over English Renaissance drama. and he laid the foundations of modern literary criticism. In it.2. The excellence of their literary work and the elegance and force of their critical arguments made them central figures of the Augustan Age. or of the heroic couplet* over blank verse*. balance. Alexander Pope brought to perfection Dryden’s achievements in poetic style and technique. Joseph Addison*. a society exhausted by civil wars was expressing its need for stability and moderation. and propriety would favour the spirit of social unity and order and would contribute to the protection of the achievements of civilisation. John Dryden (1631-1700) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 95 . but it represents the quintessence of the Augustan literary ideal. English literary Neoclassicism* The Neoclassic aspiration for order. Pope presents the basic concepts and theses of this literary orientation in a poetic form of remarkable elegance and clarity. His didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711) is the most outstanding literary manifesto of English Neoclassicism. 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*. and Alexander Pope* in the 18 th . Besides Dryden and Pope. Augustan England believed that a cultural idea of balance. in a series of essays and prefaces where he discussed matters of literary composition and taste and defended his own literary practice. in which he systematises his Neoclassic view on literary art. such as the superiority of the Ancients over the Moderns.1.2. In both cases. John Dryden illustrated with masterpieces all contemporary literary genres. elegance. 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.
yet achieve great beauty.2.2. humble style. of infinite variety. which usually presented ordinary people and actions. Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics One of the most important features of literary Neoclassicism was the concern with rules and norms. and to those patterns of behaviour. whose imagination had nothing to do with training or learning. comedy. who respected no particular rules and followed no particular models. This was the case of the genius.2. for the Augustans. i. which in turn required good judgment and common sense. Nature and Reason According to the Neoclassic doctrine. The Augustans were aware that the heights of literary achievement couldn’t be reached by simply learning the trade. A poet’s innate talent needed training. to make form and substance adequate to each other. which were seen as common to all humanity and as permanent and unchanging. since it dealt with noble characters and actions. and the poet might disregard them.3. the most valuable store of literary experience. It was the existence of this rule of decorum that enabled Neoclassic authors to derive great effects from its deliberate. a dignified diction. and whose creative power was a matter of intuitive genius and not of acquired art. skilful transgression. would lead to the revelation of the typical and universal features. for instance. lacking ornament. but a general intellectual tendency in the age. the main source of inspiration for the writer was Nature*. by which the Augustans meant most frequently Human Nature. was expected to use a common. in satirical or burlesque* works. The rule of decorum 4. and in order to do that accurately he was supposed to follow Reason as the main guide.e. required an elevated style. i.e. The concept of Human Nature referred to those features of human character and experience. Sometimes rules might be too constraining for this natural gift.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Epic and tragedy. that it was an inborn gift that made a poet. which referred to the writer’s obligation to use those elements of diction* and composition which were considered proper for each genre. was Shakespeare. The study of human nature in its individual aspects. the emphasis on discipline in art. The most eloquent example. skill. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Human Nature 96 . The belief in order and correctness was reflected in the neoclassic principle of decorum [from Latin: propriety].. Following Nature presupposed first of all its understanding. The Neoclassic emphasis on the principles and rules that guided successful creation did not mean blind adherence to them. To follow / copy Nature was the writer’s main endeavour. on the other hand. and he could master the secrets of poetic art by the study and imitation of the works of ancient authors. The quest for patterns of general significance through the study of particulars was not only a literary precept.
Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If there should be significant differences.g. The rationalist poetics* of Neoclassicism owed greatly to Horace*. a combination achieved through reason. and beauty was the result of the balanced combination of talent and inspiration with skill. in a paragraph of no more than 4 complex sentences (80-100 words / 8-10 lines). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 97 . but also to imported French ideas – e. read again subchapter 4. and the indicated fragment. to those of Nicolas Boileau*.2. in the Reader represents a fragment from Samuel Johnson’s Preface to his 1765 edition of Shakespeare’s works. SAQ 3 Text 4. What are the main ideas in this fragment.The Restoration and the Augustan Age A rationalist poetics All the faculties involved in the process of creation were seen as subordinated to Reason. Emotion was supposed to be filtered and controlled by reason. or art*. and what Neoclassic conviction do they imply? Answer in the space below.3. at the end of the unit.3.
eloquence with restraint. affectation were rejected. the language of prose aimed more and more at simplicity. and which illustrated most eloquently the didactic impulse of all Augustan literature. A more straightforward style in prose was an imperative in an age so much concerned with education of mentalities. The writer's art was a form of social communication. In the context of general progress. and the measure of the writer’s skill was his ability to convey an impression of “natural easiness and unaffected grace.4. 4. “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. but to be a functional part of the community. refinement with wisdom. too.” Augustan wit 4. It must not be forgotten that this was the age of the Enlightenment*. of the belief in progress an in man’s perfectibility. Ostentation.5. manners and taste. 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. or. Wit described a style which combined elegance with profundity. “grace and strength united. where nothing seems to be studied. 98 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .3. as Oliver Goldsmith defined it. Literature was supposed to delight but also to instruct – to offer not only aesthetic pleasure. of quick accumulation of information. This ideal of style is best summed up by the Augustan notion of wit. The Augustan ideal of style The suitable doctrine for the Age of Reason.2. and of the increase and diversification of the reading public. The periodical essay is the Augustan prose genre which contributed immensely to the forging of a modern prose style. The periodical essay Although the normative poetics of Neoclassicism had in view mainly poetry and drama. precision and clarity. but also moral edification and standards of good judgment and behaviour. yet everything is extraordinary” (Thomas Sprat*). with the cultivation of men’s best virtues through polite learning*. It displayed flexibility skilfully controlled.2.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. of critical debate in every field. unnecessary ornament. its effects were considerable on prose. and he was not supposed to withdraw in an ivory tower. Neoclassicism cultivated an ideal of style characterised in the first place by intellectual clarity and expressive restraint.
” that ignorance is a source of evil. contributing significantly to the “polite” education. and they were published with varying regularity. At the same time. some of them being issued daily. the debate on a variety of critical and aesthetic issues made the latter familiar to the public. Some writers felt that this popular avidity for political news might inflame partisanship and favour a spirit of social discord. Journalism and coffee houses* were the main instruments by which people’s curiosity was satisfied. Many periodical essays were dedicated to the dissemination of philosophical and scientific notions. the middle class readers. that “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing.The Restoration and the Augustan Age It developed in the late 17 and early 18th centuries. merchants and ship owners 17th century coffee house in Covent Garden Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 99 . In order to counterbalance this tendency. opened in 1688. the periodical essayists aimed at broadening the intellectual horizon of their readers. The reflections on both modern and ancient works. as a reaction to the ever greater demand for political news and gossip. They believed. at a time when political tension in the country and the events of war on the Continent engaged public attention to a high degree. at cultivating their minds. the enlightenment and the improvement of taste of its widest section. for a clientele of ships' captains. and to offer intellectual enlightenment to a wide audience. with Alexander Pope. dominantly middle class. Essay periodicals were usually the work of a single author. or to the discussion of literary matters. The periodical essay constituted a chronicle of contemporary manners and an effective instrument of moral and social criticism. th Edward Lloyd’s coffee house. they created an alternative kind of periodical publication. meant to provide guidance in matters of manners and morals. consisting in essays on a variety of topics.
If they are significantly different. Explain the analogy that his observation invites us to develop.1. were Richard Steele*’s The Tatler* (1709-1711). Think of present relevance of this remark. 100 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Tatler and The Spectator. collected in book form. at the end of the unit. and Joseph Addison’s The Spectator (1711-1714). 4.e. “The Spectator’s Club” Among the most important periodical essayists. whose essays were published several times in the century.3. only] a single day sprouts up* in follies that are only to be killed by an assiduous culture. and by far the most popular ones.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 4 In one of his periodical essays. Joseph Addison wrote: The mind that lies fallow* but [i. in no more than 12 lines / 120 words. think again and try to do the exercise once more. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. they tried to make their essays not only instructive but also attractive and amusing. Like other writers. To increase the efficiency of their undertaking. 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). on a separate sheet.
Now.e. for instance. who had spent a turbulent youth in the company of the Restoration Wits. • Sir Andrew Freeport. a model of honesty.” of wide learning. His wisdom and gravity are set against the frivolous interests of Will Honeycombe. Sir Andrew Freeport’s convictions are those of an enlightened middle class. for The Spectator.e. for true power is to be got by arts [i. otherwise harmless and a well-bred gentleman. a middle-aged squire. he is a somewhat old-fashioned gentleman. steady effort] makes more lasting acquisitions than valour [i. an embodiment of its energies and enterprising spirit. wit and understanding. Spectator” on their opinions and behaviour in a variety of circumstances constituted real lessons in manners and morals. • Will Honeycomb. strong reason. and the reflections of “Mr. He is a man of “great probity. He is the prototype for the character of the country squire in many 18th century novels. His character is the first notable literary representation of the merchant class in a serious and dignified way. 101 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . manners.e. as his father had intended for him. and great experience. a man of the world. bravery in battle]. generous and cheerful. ready to take responsibility for the progress of the nation. who had to quit the military profession because his strict honesty proved to be an obstacle to the advancement of his career.” or that “diligence [i. a courageous. a gallant. actions and writings of the ancients makes him a very delicate observer of what occurs to him in the world. Many essays presented little stories about incidents in their daily lives. He is a pleasant company for his acquaintances in town. and his harmless eccentricities are accompanied by a natural benevolence that endears him to everybody. idleness] has ruined more nations than the sword.” and “his familiarity with the customs.” but whose life constitutes an eloquent example of moral integrity. an expert in fashion and gossip. but their good breeding qualifies them both for the same society of gentlemen. no longer as repulsively materialistic and greedy. a competent justice of the peace*. rather than a merit. hard work and skill. a rich London merchant. turned to the study of literature. taciturn and with “no interest in this world.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Joseph Addison (1672-1719) For example. in which they collaborated. a group of six fictional characters “engaged in different ways of life” and representing various social and human types. • A gentleman who. • A clergyman. “a person of indefatigable industry*. modest and commonsensical person. He believes. skills] and industry. and sloth [i. in his county. instead of pursuing the career of a lawyer. Steele and Addison invented The Spectator’s Club.” He thus embodies the Augustan humanist view that true knowledge of human nature comes from a combination of first hand experience and learning. The six members of The Spectator’s Club were: • Sir Roger de Coverley.e. interested in his appearance and displaying a certain affectation in behaviour. “a very philosophic man.” • Captain Sentry. that “it is stupid and barbarous way to extend dominion by arms.” He is a worthy representative of the middle class. laziness.
common sense. Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729) 102 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 7. a cultivated mind and superior understanding. 3. If there should be major discrepancies. read again subchapter 4. 4. 2. 6. which are important for the Enlightenment ideal of social integration. cheerful disposition. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 5 From the description of the members of the Spectator’s Club.3. at the end of the unit.1. more carefully.The Restoration and the Augustan Age The gentleman represented an ideal of social behaviour. 1. combining the external marks of social decency (pleasant conversation. it is clear that Addison promotes certain virtues. 5. and write them in the indicated spaces below. Identify at least eight such features. 8. the talent of never offending the others) with such qualities as moral and physical courage.
genuinely gifted for leadership. king David. with implications concerning the whole of Augustan civilisation. Alexander Pope Satirical attacks on literary mediocrity and incompetence were frequent in an age so preoccupied with standards of correctness and excellence. Absalom is the latter’s illegitimate son. Charles’s brother and heir to the throne. a merciless attack on literary pedantry and dulness. Bayes*. and Achitophel is the first Earl of Shaftesbury. greed. The writers’ sense of mission turned them into guardians of the enlightened values of their time. 4. could not entirely remove or hide its tensions.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. The Augustan Age is the great age of satire in English literature.4. Augustan satire The refinement and elegant surface of the Augustan Age. contradictions and dark aspects. its cult of reason and common sense. 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 . disloyal and excessively ambitious. stability and order of a remarkable civilisation. The best achieved portrait is that of Achitophel / the Earl of Shaftesbury. 1743).1. John Dryden A remarkable example of political satire is John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel (1681-1682). Swift – aimed it at a variety of targets. and its most outstanding representatives – Dryden. appears also as a stormy spirit. whose claim to the throne was justified by his Protestant religion. Augustan satire defended the values of civilisation in a civilised way: elegance. are mingled: the evil conspirator. Samuel. struggle for power and profit. Perhaps the greatest Augustan satire on the world of letters is Alexander Pope’s The Dunciad* (1728. selfishness. 15-18). in which Dryden’s praise and criticism. from political and social life. often touched by ironic humour. the instigator of the opposition to Catholic James Stuart. The perfection of Dryden’s diction and his masterful use of the sketches heroic couplet* combine with his brilliant of character.4. and satire became their formidable weapon. intrigues. at the advice of Achitophel* (cf. a passionate. Pope. turning it into an allegory of contemporary political struggles.4. The biblical characters represent English political figures: King David is Charles II. the Duke of Monmouth. 4. Political and religious dissensions. brave and fearless man. admiration and condemnation. to religious debates and literary practices. It tells the biblical story of Absalom’s rebellion against his father. folly. hypocrisy. urbanity and refinement made it a sophisticated instrument of correction.2. The hero of this mock-heroic epic* is Mr. and affectation were felt as diseases which threatened to weaken the force.
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. as it betrays Pope’s fear that civilisation and its conquests are vulnerable to unreason. in a paragraph not exceeding 12 lines / 120 words. Explain this analogy.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Alexander Pope (1688-1744) critics who aspire to undeserved fame. read the fragment again.2. 104 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Science. and Morality. Art. Its implications. are more disturbing than entertaining. If it should be significantly different. and the satire ends with the apocalyptic extinction of the enemies of Dulness: Fancy (i. Philosophy. and skill in the use of parody and the burlesque. more attentively. Truth. Here. however.e. drawing an analogy between satire and a public execution. imaginative inventiveness.4. concerning satire. imagination). he reflects on the art of the satirist. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and revise subchapter 4. that the corruption of the spirit (which follows from the corruption of the word) leads to the crumbling of all order. in the Reader represents a fragment from one of John Dryden’s essays. Pope’s satirical allegory displays unequalled comic virtuosity and wit. SAQ 6 Text 4. The empire of Dulness finally extends to the whole universe of the spirit. pointing out the Augustan conception of satire. Religion. Compare your answer with the suggestions provided at the end of the unit.
social and intellectual realities. In Luggnagg. bigger than himself. the Yahoos. Gulliver’s Travels pretends to be the record of the most astonishing experiences of an average man. Gulliver finds himself among people who are twelve times smaller and. Like many of his contemporaries. combining the conventions of utopia* and of the imaginary voyage. Back in England. and his nostalgia for the perfect world of the 105 I. with a sharp sense of observation. From this last country. Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) 4.” therefore a potential threat to that civilisation. building houses starting from the roof.A Voyage to Laputa. and where human creatures. he is shown the Academy of Lagado (a burlesque of the Royal Society). Jonathan Swift Pope’s friend. Laputa. as well as an unequalled master of satirical wit and irony. the flying island. absorbed in mathematical speculations and music. with elements of the marvelous or fantastic fable.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. because he is perceived as a Yahoo endowed with “a rudiment of reason. he learns about the Struldbruggs.A Voyage to Brodingnag III.4. an uncompromising defender of truth. whose adventures as a surgeon and then the captain of several ships take him through the most unusual places. Jonathan Swift. Gulliver is cast on the shore of a country inhabited by the Houyhnhnms. appear in the utmost state of degeneracy. Swift was divided between the idealist confidence in man’s capacity of selfimprovement. intelligent speaking horses. In his third voyage he visits several strange places. economic. In Lilliput and Brobdingnag. philosophical. It is an allegorical satirical travel book. a hater of pedantry and pretence. religious. respectively. justice and freedom. Balnibarbi.4.A Voyage to Lilliput II. These satires have established his reputation as a champion of moral virtue.4.3. In it. where mad scientists are engaged in phantasmagoric projects. is one of the greatest satirists in world literature.A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnhnms Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . is inhabited by impractical intellectuals. Luggnagg and Japan IV. In his last voyage. and the disappointment and anger at seeing reason so often abused. In Balnibarbi. popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. curious and resourceful.” a work which Swift published anonymously in 1726. in his potential as a rational creature. like extracting sunshine from cucumbers. His hurt sensitivity and disillusionment are conveyed in a series of prose satires which cover a wide range of issues – political. but the significance of his work may be extended to the philosophical question of the human condition itself. and literary. whose admirable society is built entirely on rational principles. The most powerful expression of Swift’s satirical genius is Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World “by Lemuel Gulliver. Gulliver is finally expelled. The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Consisting of four books. a race of immortal people whose eternal life is in fact a curse of endless decay. Gulliver can’t help seeing his fellow humans as disgusting Yahoos. or softening marble to make pincushions. Swift alludes satirically to a multitude of aspects from the contemporary political. Glubbdubdrib.
and he prefers now the company of horses. 3. 106 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . from the Reader. four features which humans and Yahoos are found to share. and he also re-interprets attitudes observed in the Yahoos in the light of the information received from Gulliver about human customs and institutions. 1.5. If none of the features mentioned there corresponds with your answers. His initial curiosity and openness to the diversity of human nature turns into madness and misanthropy. Each answer should be limited to 3 lines / 30 words. 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). incapable of suffering the proximity of humans. read the fragment carefully once more. The parallel results in a grotesque image of humankind. 4. who is thus forced to examine itself in a distorting mirror. at the end of the unit.The Restoration and the Augustan Age rational horses alienates him completely from his own kind. in Text 4. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Find. 2.
forgetting that man holds a middle place in the Great Chain of Being*. jumping over or creeping under a stick. its thirst for war – the endless conflict with France. his real humiliation is caused by the unflattering contrast between his own race and civilisation. as he is in permanent danger from creatures so much larger than him. ruled by an enlightened monarch. Their non-human shape suggests that the absence of passion.4. In spite of Gulliver’s dimensions (an allegorical representation of his complex of superiority). means de-humanisation. etc. cruel and hypocritical. The Lilliputians’ physical smallness is accompanied by moral flaws – they prove to be mean. he sees ideal creatures. he is actually physically vulnerable in this world. between those who wear shoes with high heels and with low heels. Gulliver. its political parties – Whigs and Tories –. The Houyhnhnms may be an allegorical embodiment of moral perfection attained through the exercise of pure reason. and his position in that strange land is highly ambiguous. etc. The Yahoos and the Houyhnhnms are a double mirror for Gulliver. The error of Gulliver* is that he adopts an impossible deal of perfection. he contemplates with shame and despair all the imperfections of the human race. Dissenters and Catholics. He is no longer certain of the essence of his own nature. In the Yahoos. In Brobdingnag. These comic details are satirical allusions to contemporary or recent events.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Their society is deeply divided by absurd dissensions: for example. by dancing on a rope. Gulliver is confronted. 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. his vulnerability increases.5. to integrate Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 107 . However. from which he chooses to leave. and he realises how far man is from moral perfection. governed only by reason. issues or figures. physical size indicates allegorically features of human nature. Gulliver’s failure to accept the mixed essence of man. but their universe is completely deprived of emotion and feeling. Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia In the first two books of Gulliver’s Travels. with its religious controversies among Anglicans. ambitious. and they constitute a miniature picture of England. The fourth voyage. the highest offices in the state are obtained by those who know how to entertain the king best.).6. In the Houyhnhnms. of the capacity for affection. with the hardest dilemma and the deepest humiliation. vain. in his last adventure. and the utopian commonwealth of Brobdingnag.4. or between those who break a boiled egg at the round end – the "Big Endians" – and those who break it at the pointed end). Political corruption is institutionalised (for example. the frustrated idealist After the comic-disturbing examples of unreason witnessed in his third voyage. Gulliver in Brobdingnag 4.
For many readers.The Restoration and the Augustan Age reason with feeling and instinct. Illustration from an early nineteenth century abridged editions (for children): Gulliver entertaining and being entertained by the tiny Lilliputians. Houyhnhnm and Yahoo . In a “theological” perspective. the Yahoos would stand for the essentially corrupt nature of man. or as opposite caricatural views of man in the state of nature. The Houyhnhms and the Yahoos have also been seen as allegorical representations of Reason and Instinct. the Yahoos embodied Swift’s own vision of mankind as hopelessly degraded. and he ultimately becomes the target of Swift’s irony. filthy. an image which earned Swift the reputation of a misanthrope. while the Houyhnhms would represent man who has escaped the consequences of the original sin. makes him a frustrated idealist. The last book of Gulliver’s Travels has been given a multitude of interpretations.illustration from a 1947 edition of Gulliver’s Travels 108 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . unteachable and ungovernable.
and to revise subchapter 4. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 109 .4. more carefully. Point out both kinds of aspects in the description contained in Text 4. If there should be major differences. you need to read the fragment again. and by mixing the desirable with the unacceptable. Formulate your answer in no more than 10 lines / 100 words for each aspect. For Gulliver. the Houyhnhnms’ society is perfect – a true utopia.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. find anti-utopian elements in it. however. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The careful reader will. from the Reader.6.6. Utopian aspects: Anti-utopian aspects Compare your answer with the one provided at the end of the unit.
Pope) and in prose (Swift). his learning and sense of literary tradition. Satire. a wide public. was another characteristic genre. The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Gulliver’s Travels is the expression of Swift’s indignation and anger at man’s foolishness. and he used every weapon in the satirist’s arsenal to awaken man from his selfcomplacency: biting irony. Like heroic tragedy (e. Dryden). placing wit above virtue.4. Dryden. but also an enduring achievement of the enlightened spirit. on the rule of decorum. reason was not to be taken for granted: man was only a creature capable of reason. and. accommodating a diversity of literary forms and traditions – old and new. which contributed greatly to the development of a modern prose style. both in verse (Dryden. Steele. caricature. the belief in progress and improvement in an age which was also that of the Enlightenment. on expressive restraint and skilfully controlled wit. dominantly middle class. narrow-sightedness. One of the literary forms that developed during this period was the periodical essay (Addison. etc. generally. It cultivated the idea of the “marriage” of Art and Nature. this highly artificial and conventional form was an expression of the taste of the Court aristocracy. The latter’s eminently rationalist poetics placed emphasis on clarity and elegance in style and composition. Dryden. Gradually. arrogant ignorance and unfounded pride in his reason. and his brilliant wit make Gulliver’s Travels not only a landmark in Augustan literature. It was a chronicle of manners and an instrument of social and moral criticism.7. parody. the pressure of the taste of the rising middle class replaced it with sentimental comedy. Swift. A representative literary genre for this age is the comedy of manners (Etherege. Its flourishing in the Augustan Age reflects the integration of literature with social life. inflated ideal of heroism and virtue. and recommended as a model the literary wisdom of the Ancients. Swift’s extraordinary inventiveness and narrative gift. Johnson are central figures of the Augustan Age. grotesque. 110 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .g. Steele). a masterpiece of irony which places under scrutiny many of the myths of the Enlightenment. comedy was licentious and cynical. For Swift. therefore also capable of error. While heroic drama sustained an impossible.). Swift’s allegorical satire Gulliver’s Travels is the most accomplished exploration of the contradictions of the Age of Reason. Addison.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. the writers’ sense of responsibility towards the values of their civilisation. on Reason and common sense in aesthetic choice. The period of the Restoration overlaps with the emerging Augustan Age. Goldsmith. and by means of it. Pope. was enlightened in matters of literary taste and intellectual achievements. He intended to “vex the world” in order to “mend” it. It is an age of transition. when literary Neoclassicism developed. Congreve. including that of Reason itself. Summary The Restoration is a historical and a literary period.
but is intended to impress others. Anarch: a personification of anarchy. which designated a fashionable. “Will’s Coffee House. affectation: a manner of speech.1. or escort. and the Glossary in Unit 2. coffee houses: since the 1650s. all the acquisitions of the human spirit become meaningless.” where Dryden would come regularly. Dulness as “Great Anarch” is the ruler of spiritual chaos. or human skill (as contrasted to the work of Nature). political or religious orientation. 111 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . well-dressed man. baroque: see again subchapter 2. admirer. acquiring quickly the status of real “institutions” of opinion. his craftsmanship. gathered people of the literary profession or interested in literary matters. the acquired competence of the writer.1. achieved by training and practice. In her empire of darkness and confusion. beaux: plural of beau (“handsome” in French). greatly concerned with appearances. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Art may generally refer to the work of man. they were convenient places for socialising and for the dissemination of news. it may also refer to a woman’s lover. Augustan: see Augustan Age in the Glossary in Unit 1. art: in the Neoclassic doctrine. In Pope’s satire. For instance. They were usually frequented by people of the same social rank. in the 2nd Book of Kings (verses 15-18). dress or behaviour which is not natural. profession or interest. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1.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.
which conceived of every being in nature as having its well-established place in an uninterrupted chain of increasing degrees of complexity. who had criticised Pope for his edition of Shakespeare (1725). Great Chain of Being: an ancient world-picture. justice of the peace: a person appointed by the crown to judge less serious cases in small courts of law. landscape. slowness in thinking and learning. dulness: in a strict sense. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. In the 1743 version of The Dunciad. stupidity. Bayes: a name which was frequently applied satirically to a writer. It derives from “bay. the bay-leaf crown was the ancient emblem of fame. Gulliver: the name sounds very similar to the adjective “gullible. licentiousness: uncontrolled sexual behaviour. but to the whole of created reality.4. In this kind of comedy. referring not only to external nature. fop: a man who is excessively concerned with fashion and elegance. Pope replaced Theobald by Colley Cibber. a word designating a person who is stupid or slow to learn. characters were constructed on the basis of a particular disposition.3 in Unit 1 (heroic drama).” Nature: an inclusive concept. Mr. the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 112 . and distinction. In Pope’s satire. to deceive).The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • comedy of humours: see Jonson in the Glossary in Unit 1.” diction : see poetic diction in the Glossary in Unit 1. i. Bayes. Dryden himself had been attacked several times as “Mr.e. surviving through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance into the 18th century. figuratively: undeveloped or inactive.” a “force inertly strong” which corrupts understanding and confuses the mind. boring. Dunciad: the title is coined after The Iliad. “Mr.” which means easy to fool or persuade to believe something (from “to gull”: to cheat. shortness of sight or imperfect sense of things. fallow: (about land) left unplanted or unseeded. industry: the quality of being hard-working or of being always employed usefully. inclination.” another word for “laurel”.3 in Unit 1. unexciting. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. “Dull” also means uninteresting. Pope uses the word in the enlarged sense of “all slowness of apprehension. heroic tragedy: see again subchapter 1. from dunce. a strictly ordered hierarchical system. hedonism: a lifestyle devoted to the seeking of sensual pleasure. or “humour. in which the destruction of one “link” would bring chaos. mock-heroic epic: see mock-heroic style and epic in the Glossary in Unit 1. honour. Bayes” refers to Lewis Theobald. trait . who in 1730 had become Poet Laureate.
Restoration Wits: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. and topos = place). polite learning: the knowledge acquired through classical education (polite: refined. or literature in general.3 in Unit 1) and of comedies of manners. founder of literary journalism. in which he outlines the features of an ideal. Boileau. Tatler: a “tattler” is a person who gossips. whose poem L’art poétique (1674) established the canons of taste and the standards of literary judgement for European Neoclassicism. he translated from ancient authors. of imagination and originality. of taste or skill. uncreated word: with reference to the literary world. this phrase suggests the lack of inspiration. the conception about literature and the creative act of a certain literary school or writer.” utopia: a genre in fiction whose name comes from Sir Thomas More’s work Utopia (1516).e.” from Greek u = not. poetics: the system of principles and conventions which govern a certain literary form. and he was the pioneer of modern English literary criticism. essays and dramatic works. making literature “dull. especially the main landowner in a village. John (1637-1700): one of the most outstanding figures of the Restoration and the Augustan Age. or who chats or talks idly. sentimental comedy see again subchapter 1. squire: a country gentleman. perfect society (literally: “no place. Gallery of personalities • • • Addison. He excelled in all literary genres of his time. and he contributed significantly to the dissemination of the values of the Enlightenment in England. sprout up: to begin to grow or develop. Joseph (1672-1719): representative of English literary Neoclassicisn. 113 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . He established the periodical essay as a literary genre. He was equally successful as an author of heroic dramas (see again subchapter 1.4 in Unit 1. elegant. author of poems. Dryden.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • cosmic harmony and order manifested in the appearances of this world.4.3 in Unit 5. Nicolas (1636-1711): outstanding French poet and critic. Neoclassicism: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. i. Among the latter. polished).4. for the notion of sentimentalism.1. Pope’s satire warns thus about the dangers of lowering literary standards. and sentimental novel in subchapter 5. Marriage à la Mode (1672) distinguishes itself by its brilliant wit combats and effective social satire.
he endeavoured to lift Latin literature to the level of Greek literature. 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.C. Samuel: see the Gallery of personalities in Unit 2. member of the Royal Society. concise and flexible. or Sir Fopling Flutter (1676). George (1634-1691): a member of the group of Restoration Wits. Thomas (1635-1713): mathematician and writer. and A Modest Proposal (1729). Virgil. he argues for the superiority of the Ancients over modern authors. his works include A Tale of a Tub (1704). which contains an allegorical satire on the division of the Christian Church. and The Man of Mode. Johnson. He was a friend of the novelist Henry Fielding. an unequalled master of irony and wit. author of odes. Richard (1672-1725): Augustan essayist and dramatist (he established sentimental comedy on the English stage). Pope. Goldsmith. Steele. clear.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • Etherege. a masterpiece of 18th century fiction. Latin poet of the time of Caesar Augustus. satires and epistles. Sprat. Besides his famous Gulliver’s Travels. of Irish origin. His best comedies are She Would If She Could (1668). Together with Addison. His works include the philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). William (1640-1716): one of the Restoration Wits. William (1697-1764): painter and engraver. Oliver (1728-1774): upholder of the Neoclassic standards of style and composition. political and moral vices. in which he is the optimistic spokesman of the Age of Reason. a bitter satire in defense of the Irish people.). 114 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and a major representative of English sentimentalism. who called him a “comic history-painter. as well as to the forging of a polished literary prose style. Hogarth. preoccupied by the cultivation of an English style that should be simple. and of the influential critical work Ars Poetica. as well as the mock-heroic poem The Rape of the Lock (1712). Alexander (1688-1744): the most illustrious representative of English literary Neoclassicism. Wycherley.” Horace: Quintus Horatius Flavius (65-8 B. Among various other works. Swift. In the mock-heroic allegory The Battle of the Books (1704). extremely popular owing to his “modern moral subjects” – a series of paintings or engravings which tell a story and constitute a comment on social. Jonathan (1667-1745): the greatest English satirist. Like his friend. he is the author of the novel The Vicar of Wakefield (1766). he contributed to the spreading of Enlightenment ideas.
SAQ 5 honesty. 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 115 .e. SAQ 6 Satire is the art of pointing at people’s faults without resorting to insult or calumny. opinions and tastes. and she rejects the idea of the wife’s subordination. SAQ 4 Addison builds an analogy between the human mind and a field. furnished with ideas. modesty. good judgment. 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.T. 7. diligence. so the mind which is not assiduously and constantly cultivated – i.T. and she proposes to reject the social rituals and fashions that would require them to wear masks.F. In marriage. a way of protecting their intimacy and their feelings. wild plants growing where they are not wanted) will invade an uncultivated field. Addison’s observation reflects the faith in man’s intellectual and moral perfectibility through responsible education – an attitude characteristic of the Enlightenment. common sense. 5. 8. regardless of their particular condition.T. She wishes for a sincere and authentic relationship. Culture is thus seen as an improvement of nature. is. good sense. for sophisticated Millamant. abdicating from reason.F SAQ 2 Millamant has an unconventional view of marriage. Civilised reserve in society. reasonableness. industry. each partner should accept and respect the other’s wishes.T.” Just as weeds (i. good breeding. 9. and should not try to impose his/her habits on the other. open-mindedness. benevolence.F. the refusal to make a public show of their affection. in an analogous sense. Johnson implies that an author’s greatness depend on his insight into Human Nature. of those features which are universal. because he succeeded in rendering the general “truths” of human nature. common to all humanity – is greater than the pleasure of “sudden wonder” procured by the depiction of “particular manners” and by “fanciful invention.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. integrity.F. which may be cultivated or left to “lie fallow. 6. SAQ 3 The pleasure of contemplating representations of “general nature” – i. 3. by the standards of her social environment. of Human nature. 4. His characters embody the fundamental human passions which will always move mankind. and.e.” Shakespeare will appeal to readers across the ages.T. or judgment. She also refuses to see marriage as a limitation of the woman’s freedom.e. sense of responsibility. Dryden makes an analogy between the sharp blade of the executioner’s sword and the sharp irony and wit of the satirist. educated to think – will employ itself with trifles.
Editura Universităţii Suceava. conflict and self-interest. Further reading 1. A Critical History of English Literature. 180-187) 3. The civilised art of satire is opposed to the coarseness and brutality of personal attack and insult. the rulers’ habit of surrounding themselves by favourites whose role is to flatter and to encourage them in their abuses.” SAQ 7 1. The English Eighteenth Century. SAQ 8 Utopian aspects: The cultivation and exercise of reason. The tendency to idleness. decency and civility are certainly desiderata of any civilisation. English Literature and Civilisation. and no personal choice in the matter of marriage. 5. the generalises extension of friendship and benevolence. Anti-utopian aspects: the absolutisation of reason. which breeds imaginary ills.33-66) 116 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Houyhnhms are not divided by quarrels. The incapacity of choosing a ruler according to real merit. 2003 (pp. civility and friendship become a cold and superficial form of social relationship. Preda. Cornelia. ultimately of imagination. Both of them need skill – or “art” – to do this in a satisfactory way. The Novel in Its Beginnings. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. deprives their thinking of flexibility and nuance. 3.” the subtlety of his accusations. In the absence of affective attachment. Ioan-Aurel (coord. the “fineness. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. only the species counts. the exclusion of opinion.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Just as the executioner will implacably carry out the capital punishment. which is meant only for procreation. The individual is of no importance.. and the equal education of males and females was a progressive Enlightenment ideal. the education in the spirit of moderation and industry. The tyranny of reason also rules out affection and emotion: they have no particular feelings for their own offspring. the “unnatural appetite” for things whose value doesn’t justify the effort and energy spent in their acquisition and preservation. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). 1983 (pp. The spirit of competition. which are the literary equivalent of a man’s “slovenly butchering. Macsiniuc. and the hierarchy of their society is based on racial discrimination (“inferior” Houyhnhnms will fatally be servants). Daiches. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd.). which makes social progress inconceivable. The art of the accomplished satirist consists in the elegance. 4. the jealousy (envy) and the aggressiveness towards one’s fellows. They practice population control. the ability of the worst to set themselves as leaders. 537-550) 2. the silly behaviour of women determined to draw attention to themselves. 2. David. so the satirist is merciless in his denouncing human flaws. 1969 (pp. Womankind’s lustfulness and inclination to coquetry. The irrational greed and avarice. vol.
220.127.116.11.4.2. 5. 18.104.22.168.3.4. 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. 22.214.171.124.1. 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 .126.96.36.199. 5. 5. 5.4. 188.8.131.52.1. 184.108.40.206.1. 5.1. 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. 5.4.4. 5. 5. 5.2. 220.127.116.11.2.5. 5.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. 18.104.22.168. 22.214.171.124.6.3. 5. 5. 5.1.3. 5.2. 5.8.
mostly imitations of French models.1. tolerance. confined to the 118 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The late 17 th century had seen a flourishing of this kind of fiction. but there was a considerable amount of novels written by women. more inclusive reading public. a certain tendency to women’s emancipation. in the early years of the 18 th century. natural rights. and there is a connection between. Romances were long narratives combining heroic adventure and passionate love. 5. and their involvement with literary life was increasing. A significant part of this new reading public consisted in women. Women’s education was beginning to be encouraged. This new literary form embodied the democratic and revolutionary impulse of a century in which the issues of individual liberty. whose action was often set in remote. 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. and the development of the novel. whose vast majority was middle-class.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify. in various aspects of the novels discussed in this unit. the rise of the middle classes. 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. 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. of a genre which became the main rival of the novel: the romance. and whose protagonists were of noble stock. Background and main concerns The novel’s emergence is commonly associated with the aspiration of the middle classes to overcome cultural marginality.1. The general growth of literacy* in the 18 th century led to the rise of a new. emancipation and progress received unprecedented prominence and were vital for the self-assertion of the new class.1. Novel and romance in the 18th century The dominance of female readership explains the enduring popularity. exotic settings. and generally about women.
socially and materially dependent on men. because the depicted experience and universe were more or less familiar to them. 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. in Augustan terms. It attempted to correct morals and educate manners by censuring vice and folly. its normality. On the other hand. the province of the novel was the familiar. legend. realised with an unprecedented wealth of social. vague and abstract figures. The novel proposed norms of moral conduct and standards of social integration. it recommended patterns of behaviour and models of success that were relevant to the condition of middle class readers. The novel reflects. Thus. Characters are no longer idealised. the novel reflected the general critical spirit of the Age of the Enlightenment and participated in its project of emancipation through education. but from contemporary life. but distinct individualities. On the one hand. history. the novel’s didactic vocation. The ordinary aspects of life. with entertainment frequently subordinated to the instructive aim. by common people. truth to Nature – is what primarily distinguished the novel from romance.2. whose province was the spectacular and the extraordinary. Realism – or. 5. in the novel. its emphasis on individual experience is the literary expression of the spirit of individualism associated with the growing importance of the middle classes. The represented experience was meant to engage the reader’s interest both because it was familiar and because of its uniqueness. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 119 . a double tendency of the Age of the Enlightenment. a reality that was close to the average reader’s experience became a source of imaginative interest.1. their common denominator was the attempt to convey an impression of authentic experience.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel domestic universe. Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Whereas the basic aim of romance was to entertain. in its concerns. The novelist no longer drew his plots from mythology. By contrast. moral or psychological detail. or previous literature. romances were therefore literature of escape. shows its assumed responsibility towards contemporary civilisation. its endeavour to propagate a certain moral and social code. The readers of novels could identify themselves with the characters. For most women. the novel’s aspiration was to fulfil the double mission of all Augustan literature: to entertain (to divert) and to instruct (to edify). The knights and princesses of romances were replaced. In spite of the great diversity of novels in the 18th century. to their relevance for the reader’s aspirations and possibilities. its determination to participate in the general Augustan quest for an ideal of social harmony.
SAQ 1 Complete the sentences below. Women were … 3.1. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … 5. … 4. at the end of the unit.1. constitute the foundation of all novelistic plots in the 18 th century.2. and 5. 120 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . by centering its interest on the relationship between the individual and his/her social environment. read again subchapters 5.1. 1. on the other. 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. and public/social norms and conventions. If there should be major differences. Two or three lines (20-30 words) should be enough for each completion. Each full statement should describe a general aspect concerning the rise of the novel as a genre in the 18th century. on the one hand.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel offers imaginative versions of the reconciliation of these two tendencies. The tensions and conflicts between private/individual convictions and inclinations. The rise of the middle classes … 2.
e. The motif of the travel is central. Many novels cut across divisions. forms of expression. repetitious.g. but to literature as well. patterns and motifs. which claim the reader’s attention more than the characters do. belonging to several categories at once. in which the action is episodic. therefore an ally to realism. from which it borrowed devices. • • The novel of manners submits to the reader’s judgements various types of social behaviour. The most popular kinds of novels in the 18th century were: Adventure novels share with romances an emphasis on action. but also in poetry and in drama. displayed not only in fiction. the comic vision is always in the service of social and moral criticism. The comic novel is an opportunity for writers to display a critical attitude not only to reality. • Picaresque* novels may be considered a special case of adventure novels. popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. Instead. Fielding). their distance from the every day experience of common readers. classic models to follow. romance is trivialised through parody*. The comic novel in the 18th century is inscribed in a long tradition of deflation of romance. They invariably contain the motif of the journey. This makes the 18th century novel rather difficult to classify. but they differ from romances in their attention to realistic detail. • 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. irony and burlesque*. examining the conflicts between private morality and public expectation. Typology of the novel in the 18th century The novel as a genre had no authoritative. The sentimental hero/heroine unites a remarkably acute sensibility with spotless virtue and a deep sense of honour. On the other hand. in imitation of the descriptive accuracy of travel literature.1. The analysis of sentimental response was meant to elicit from the reader an empathic understanding. and the hero’s various encounters are. inclusive.g. The characteristic comic plot presupposes the passage from disorder. Sentimentalism became a literary fashion. confusion. for the author. loosely structured. misfortune to the solution of all conflicts and the integration of the protagonist in a social structure. It may either offer a comprehensive mirror of the social diversity of the age (e. and the world represented in such novels is open.3. or explore personal conflicts which involve different sets of values (e. and extremely diverse. since this kind of fiction subverts the prestige of older genres (the epic. a wide variety of influences went into its making. the romance). Richardson). on events. • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 121 . and its beginnings are defined by a tendency to “sponge” on other literary forms. i. and which emphasised the importance of feeling and its close connection with moral virtue. exposing their irrelevance and unreality. an opportunity for comprehensive social criticism.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.
3. The achievement of maturity leads to the hero’s satisfactory social integration. mocking their elevated style by applying it to common. ________________________ 4. in an atmosphere of gloom. ________________________ 2. trivial subjects. Its hero is a marginal figure who aspires to social success. usually with supernatural ingredients. It explores the diversity of social manners and their articulation with moral values. It is concerned with the individual’s full assertion as a social being. If you have failed to match any of the descriptions with the right type of novel. deliberately reducing the importance of plot or emotional conflict. at the end of a process in which he/she learns to accord private impulse with social expectation. It centres on intellectual debate and confrontation of ideas. at the end of the unit. and his/her experiences provide a satirical survey of the contemporary society. It presents a tale of mystery and horror. ________________________ 5.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. read again subchapter 5. ________________________ 8. 1. It explores the labyrinth of emotion and feeling. • SAQ 2 What kinds of novels do the following sentences describe? Write the answer in the space indicated by the continuous line. ________________________ 6. It offers more delight in ________________________ action than in character. ________________________ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 122 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural ..3. Two of these descriptions do not match any of the types of novels described in the subchapter above. this illustrates the concern of the Enlightenment with the development of the individual as a social being. after each sentence. It defines itself in contrast with the “serious” narrative genres. ________________________ 7.1.
5. Both of them enjoyed enormous popularity not only in England. and both of them focus on the individual in his/her struggle of securing a legitimate position in the social structure. They share a middle class. Both Defoe and Richardson display in their narratives a remarkable faithfulness to detail. their social insertion. Its tremendous success encouraged Defoe to produce. but also on the Continent. Puritan* background. to the influence. establishing it as the most popular literary genre in the 18th century. Their rise to social respectability and wealth. and tracing the protagonists’ struggles to achieve material prosperity as a condition of a stable social position. cast in a picaresque form. several adventure novels.2. resourcefulness and capacity for adjustment and survival. They differ in the objects of their “realistic” approach: whereas Defoe’s interest is invested in the external world of fact. Mariner.1. when the writer was almost sixty. published in 1719. dynamic and versatile. His heroes are remarkable in their vitality. Richardson focuses on the inner world of thought and feeling. on the individual’s striving towards some form of personal achievement. They were all stories of success. in actions. Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Defoe’s career as a novelist started with his masterpiece. The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York. and their adventures show the individual victorious over circumstances and environment (physical or social). in circumstantial details. the power to hold attention and keep curiosity awake. This aspect in Defoe’s novels points to his Puritan background.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. They are pragmatic. Defoe and Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Each of these two novelists had an essential contribution to the rise of the novel. on the movements of consciousness and the emotional response to moral problems.2. on his fiction. Their novels are the literary reflection of the spirit of individualism that characterised the age. is invariably accompanied by moral reformation. the constant striving towards accuracy of description. Features of Defoe’s heroes Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 123 . of such non-fictional kinds of writing as the spiritual autobiography or didactic religious treatises. This confers vividness to their narratives. in the next years.
prudent and calculating mature man. in fact.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Son of a successful German merchant settled in England. C. After 26 years. in soon left a widower. Under Defoe’s pen. the desire for adventure and for “seeing the world. not only physical but also spiritual. names him Friday and turns him into his loyal servant and receptive pupil. he rescues a savage from his fellow cannibals. as well by the more recent case of a sailor who had lived in complete solitude for five years on an uninhabited island. where he has established a colony. but during a terrible storm he is shipwrecked on a desert island. In the 28 years of solitary life. a celebration of man’s power of spiritual endurance in adversity. Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Robinson Crusoe is recommended as “a just history of fact.” and leaves home on board a ship. he turns from a reckless.1920) 124 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Illustration to the first edition (1719) Robinson on the beach (illustration by N.” It is. he learns that his prospering business in Brazil has made him a rich man. On his return to England. struggling to impose on an alien space his middle class idea of order. has three children. After several misadventures at sea. He marries. Robinson becomes engaged in a heroic struggle for survival. Robinson displays from a young age the romantic inclination of wandering. he starts a voyage to Africa. of his moral strength to carry on against all obstacles. Wyeth .” without “any appearance of fiction in it. romantic youth into a realistic. and the book ends with his promise of further accounts of his island.2.” as he came to call his novels – the attempt to inculcate religion and morality through a gripping story which has the appearance of authenticity. The subject is inspired by 17th century stories of castaways on desert islands.” He disregards his father’s advice of continuing the family trade and keeping within the limits of his “middle station in life. Providence helps him finally leave the island.2. one of Defoe’s “honest cheats. to buy slaves. In the hope of increasing his wealth. Robinson settles in Brazil where he becomes a relatively prosperous plantation owner. The only survivor. such an experience became an archetypal one.
Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. as one of the great myths of individualism of Western civilisation. the motif of the island acquires symbolic Robinson’s island dimensions. In his initial struggle with despair. tracing Robinson’s progress from sin (his disobedience of his father). as his life becomes more secure and his trust in Providence increases. Robinson comes to see his solitude rather as a spiritual and moral shelter. 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. Gradually.2.. In this light. If it should differ considerably. and finally to his conviction of God’s benevolent design. Isolation is no longer a misfortune. read again subchapters 5.1. as an allegory of the ecological development of history. embodying elements of contemporary social philosophy and economic theory.2.” 5. but the proper condition for the examination of consciousness. making sure you understand the meaning of the phrase “honest cheat. at the end of the unit. the awareness of his sinfulness and the sincere desire for repentance.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. It corresponds to the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 125 . and 5.2. It may also be read as a spiritual autobiography in the Puritan tradition.3. Robinson perceives his exile from the world as a terrible punishment for his transgression of his father’s word. to the awakening of religious conscience.2. as a political or economic utopia.
Robinson finds in it a “therapeutic” value. you must read again the last two paragraphs of subchapter 5. Defoe’s novel is thus a celebration of the dignity of work. If you should fail to find any of the features mentioned there. and it is also symbolic of the Puritan sense of an intense personal relationship with God. It has its spiritual rewards. 4. g. where his daily bread is earned with “infinite labour. The enormous effort by which he secures shelter.” desires and “delights. You may render these features either by a single noun (e.2. if the biblical curse of work is meant to remind Adam permanently of his original disobedience..The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The celebration of homo faber characteristic Puritan tendency to self-scrutiny and introspection. 2. with a well-defined utilitarian view of life. ingenuity). at the end of the unit. as a self-reliant individual. the protagonist’s experience evokes the theme of the fortunate fall. and is thus a way of restoring a lost Paradise. perspicacity. 126 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . subchapter 5. Changed in his “notion of things. its essential role in man’s material and spiritual progress. 1. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. or by a sentence (e. Robinson Crusoe also celebrates those human features which enable man to master circumstances: pragmatism. at least four features of the hero’s character as they are illustrated by this description. inventiveness. in the space below. In this connection. Enumerate.. Crusoe’s years of solitude trained him for social insertion. or the felix culpa*.g. as well as the fragment in the Reader..” Robinson perceives the island as the equivalent of a regained Paradise. He takes pleasure in his work).2. describing in minute detail Robinson’s attempt to make an earthenware pot. food and the basic commodities of life turns into a source of satisfaction. perseverance. Like Adam. Robinson is cast out from the “edenic” safety and happiness of his father’s home into an uncertain world of toil. which will serve his instinct for independence.2. 3.3.” However. SAQ 4 Read Text 5. morally autonomous.
Defoe’s novels imposed a model of style that contributed considerably to the “democratisation” of literature. clear language. he paid little attention to matters of form. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.4. on a separate sheet. SAQ 5 Analyse Text 5. lack of unnecessary ornamentation. the most common objects and actions in their particularity.2. 2. which draws much of its force from Defoe’s peculiar narrative manner and style.2. It was with Richardson that “the sense of life” conveyed by the narrative was completed by a sense of form. In his aspiration to create an effect of reality in his narrative. Identify in it at least four features of Defoe’s characteristic narrative style and write them in the space provided below. concreteness. clarity. at the same time. episodic plots imitate the episodic quality of life itself. The richness of concrete detail. the accumulation of circumstantial detail create a strong sense of a palpable. 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. with unmatched vividness. 4. If your list contains none of the features mentioned there. of familiar detail. at the end of the unit. 127 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2. which. in turn benefited from his innate gift for telling stories. solid world. His fiction has the remarkable power to evoke a tangible reality. 1. easy and eminently factual style made his writings accessible to a large audience. rendered in a simple. 3. but on the complexity of character and human relationship. Robinson Crusoe is a gripping narrative. His simple. arising from the complication of a plot centering not on episodic adventure. whose reality is difficult to doubt.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. containing. in the Reader from the point of view of its style. He convinced readers of the truthfulness of his narrative by evoking. Defoe’s style The world of Defoe’s novels is the world of common fact and action. The “journalistic” style of Defoe’s fiction is consonant with an ideal of prose style characterised by plainness. His linear. The latter owes greatly to Defoe’s experience as a journalist. read the fragment and subchapter 5. the frequent enumerations and inventories. the promise of symbolic meanings.4 once more and do the exercise again.
Pamela continues a diary. the death of the heroine turns her into a tragic figure. Pamela has one more test to pass: winning the approval of Mr. The plot of Pamela. In her new state. or Virtue Rewarded Pamela is a simple countryside girl who works as a maidservant in the house of Lady B_. in Bedfordshire. who is now convinced of the purity of her motives and of her innocence. Both are written in the epistolary manner*. Her diary – intended for her parents – falls into Mr. not only in England but also on the Continent. unanimously loved and admired. Both novels concentrate on the microcosm of the family and develop the themes of the trial of innocence. 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. There. but also the agitation of her heart and its conflicting impulses. As the first great sentimental novelist. Samuel Richardson (1689-1761) 5. the double victim of the libertine aristocrat who raped her and of her narrow-minded. Richardson focuses on the relation between feeling and virtue. Faced with her resistance.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. whose affection she finally gains.2. His influence was considerable. sensibility and morality. Richardson’s prominent place in the history of the English novel is ensured by two novels: Pamela. B_ abducts her and keeps her a prisoner for a while in his Lincolnshire house. Pamela differs from Clarissa in tone and ending. cruel and greedy relatives. the tone is rather that of a comedy of manners and the ending is in the spirit of the Cinderella* tale.5. His focus on the inner life of feeling and emotion prefigures the Romantic* sensibility. Her disarming combination of graceful modesty and pride helps her come victorious in an encounter with haughty Lady Davers. or the History of a Young Lady (1748). B_’s hands. 128 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the latter’s son. B_. At the same time.6. hoping that she will give in. impressed by Pamela’s unusual beauty and grace. In Pamela. his exploration of unconscious motivation makes him a forerunner in the great tradition of the novel of psychological analysis. Mr. Mr.2. which Richardson found best suited for the realistic rendering of psychological and moral complexity. of individual freedom threatened by arbitrary power. B_’s sister. recording the details of her ordeal. Pamela decides to thank Providence by doing as much good as she can to those around her. of the struggle between virtue and vice. In Clarissa. or Virtue Rewarded (1740) and Clarissa. as well as for his didactic purpose. tries to seduce her and make her his mistress. Mr. Upon the death of her mistress. Back to Bedfordshire as mistress of the house. B’s relatives and friends. He acknowledges his love and proposes marriage to her.
Pamela is brought up by her modest parents in the spirit of the strictest religious principles.” but she defends her dignity as an individual. is consistent with the spirit of individual freedom which defines the Enlightenment. Richardson’s creation of Pamela is revolutionary. as a traditionally dominant class. B_. Richardson’s novel participates in the larger illuminist debate on the issue of authority and absolute power vs. She sees social hierarchy as “natural. but the education she received in Lady B_’s house is far above that of a servant. Gravelot to the 1742 edition) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 129 . The moral conflict in the novel is accompanied by social issues. Through its subject and theme. The cover engraving and title page of the 1741 edition Mr. as he embodies perfect virtue in a lower middle-class girl. the freedoms that he takes with her. Social hierarchy and the individual self Pamela’s problem is not only the defense of her chastity. This ambiguity in her condition makes her remarkably class-conscious. He thus questions the exclusive right of aristocracy. B_ intercepting Pamela’s first letter to her parents (Engraving by H. his violation of her privacy (including the private space of her correspondence) as abusive attempts to reduce her to the condition of an object. She perceives her imprisonment by Mr. Richardson’s implicit radical message. that no one has the right to control the ideas and feelings of another. to set moral standards to the nation.2. F.7. the rights of the individual. Pamela’s position of moral superiority reflects Richardson’s confidence that the values of the middle class entitled them to claim moral leadership.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. a complete novelty in fiction.
2. social standing] I am but upon a foot with the meanest slave. what are the implications of her exclamation: “My soul is of equal importance with the soul of a princess. 130 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but his moments of kindness confuse her and make her feel vulnerable. Her conscience is divided between her loyalty to the moral principles inculcated by her parents and her social duty.2. but her letters betray her growing affection for her master. and 5. Pamela struggles from the start between fright and fascination. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.6. B_ When the latter acts openly as her oppressor. read again attentively subchapters 5.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 6 Considering the heroine’s dilemma in the novel. If there should be significant differences. as a servant. 5. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. Psychological realism and the epistolary technique What makes Richardson a real innovator is the credibility with which he renders the heroine’s inner conflicts.2. 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.7. though in quality [i. Her initial innocent regard for her master’s benevolence turns gradually into the apprehension of danger. to obey Mr.”? Answer in the space left below. it is easier for her to stand his abuses.8.e. her contradictory impulses and unconscious motivations. between hate and admiration. at the end of the unit.
in the Reader). which are captured in the process of their emergence. events are recorded with the same care for detail as in Defoe’s narratives. He proves as unaware of his feelings as Pamela is. her sentimental response to them. SAQ 7 Starting from Richardson’s own description of his epistolary manner (Text 5.. and considering also Text 5. and his developing love.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The character of Mr. Compare your answers with the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.3.9. on the other. She has a remarkable gift for rendering an incident vividly or delineating another character. 1. He found the epistolary narrative to be best suited for his sentimental focus. find two main advantages of the epistolary technique. excerpted from Pamela. The exploration of the complexities of emotional response to pressing moral issues defines Richardson as a sentimental novelist. on the one hand.. Your answers should not exceed 4 lines / 40 words each. The use of the epistolary technique afforded direct access to the character’s thoughts and feelings. If they should correspond to none of the offered suggestions. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 131 . read again subchapter 5. and that human actions may have their true motivation hidden from consciousness. is the impact of these incidents and encounters on her mind and heart.4. What Richardson manages to convey most convincingly is the psychological truth that feeling and emotion may sometimes run counter to our rational will. In Pamela’s letters and diary. B_ follows a similar evolution. however. What counts. There is a struggle in him between the “pride of birth” and “pride of fortune”.2. as well as the indicated fragments in the Reader. 2. The spectacular change in him is his overcoming of class prejudice under the influence of feeling. at the end of the unit.
The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. and the long central section of the novel – its picaresque part – describes Joseph’s adventures on the road.1. and. modest and gentle creature. Mr.3.3. He is also the first novelist who displayed a remarkable sense of form. Parodic accents are revived: Pamela is not Richardson’s humble. Joseph Andrews is presented as Pamela’s brother. All important characters meet here. Mrs. “written in imitation of the manner of Cervantes*. The result was the first comic novel of manners in England. they mirror a wide range of human types. but also by the maid. Mr. irony. Through the omniscient* narrator. Fielding abandons parody. Fielding uses the technique of reversal as a parodic device. as well as their inclusiveness. 1790) 132 . Fielding was a master of parody.” Mr. Fielding considered the Puritan morality preached by Rhichardson’s Pamela as narrow and ungenerous. and the first comprehensive literary picture of the manners and mentalities of the age. Treating seriously of male virtue results in comic effect. controlling the narrative and imposing his own values explicitly. Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and of His Friend. He is the object of seduction of “Lady Booby*. His works are panoramic reflections of the age. author of Don Quixote” (1742). At this point. Fielding’s combination of realism and comedy inaugurated a lasting tradition of realistic fiction as an instrument of criticism of manners. The careful narrative architecture of his novels. started as a parody. Cervantes. above all. Booby. Abraham Adams. Omniscient narration afforded a comic vision of life. burlesque and comic satire. performed by means of comic satiric devices. but a voice external to the story. and he thought to propose his own version of morality. who opposes her brother’s marriage to a simple country-girl. emulating his sister in the exemplarity of his virtue. including Pamela and her husband. More unexpected Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Lady Booby and Joseph Andrews (engraving by James Heath. relationships and actions. A somber discovery marks the climax of confusion: it appears that Joseph and Fanny are brother and sister. required a narrator who should be no longer a character. priggish* upstart. Slipslop. in London. Pope. B_’s aunt. Joseph’s sweetheart. Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Fielding is the creator of the novels of manners. the author asserts himself. The hero’s companions are Parson Abraham Adams and Fanny Goodwill. Henry Fielding (1707-1754) 5. to his native village. which is doubled by the fact that Joseph is pursued not only by the mistress. 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. His acknowledged literary models were Swift. His rejection of both leads to his dismissal. so that he sets out for home. Lady Booby’s estate in Somersetshire is the scene for the novel’s last series of adventures. whose servant he was. but a snobbish.
which closes the plot. or the pattern of the adventurous journey. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 133 . Fielding exploits such motifs in a comic or burlesque key. Fielding likes to play with genres. in the spirit of comedy.” Fielding himself speaks of his work as a comic romance. T F 7. carefully. Wilson. but rooting his action in contemporaneity and the ordinary. whom they had met during their journey. Cervantes. 5. Fielding gives his definition of a comic romance and discusses the nature and the source of the comic (“the Ridiculous”). The novel as comic romance Like his invoked literary master. while Fanny and Pamela are revealed to be sisters.2. indeed “in imitation of the manner of Cervantes. T F 3. Natural imperfections are a source of the Ridiculous for the comic writer. the spectacular reversal of Joseph’s status. SAQ 8 In the Preface to Joseph Andrews. Mr.5. For instance. is an ingredient of romantic plots. If you should fail to identify the sentences correctly as true or false. T F 2. T F 5. for true or false) for each of them. 1. Both comedy and comic romance introduce characters of low social rank and inferior manners. Read Text 5.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 4. to be both serious and ironic about their conventions. The action of a comic romance is more extended and comprehensive than that of a comedy. This removes all obstacles in the way of Joseph and Fanny’s marriage. Affectation arising from hypocrisy is more efficiently comic. at the end of the unit. which turns out to be gentle*. like the motif of love fulfilled against all obstacles.3. T F 6. Circle the appropriate letter (T or F. T F 8. alluding thus to the older genre. The burlesque in writing and the caricatura in painting presuppose distortion and exaggeration. Affectation arising from vanity presupposes the concealment of vice under an appearance of virtue. very carefully and identify which of the statements below are true and which are false. Fielding resorts to the burlesque both in the creation of his characters and in diction. read the text once more. T F Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The comic writer gives pleasure by strictly imitating nature.
The presence of Parson Adams is essential for the evolution of the main character. In other words. In order to make the extraordinary variety of human types easier to deal with. In the combination of foolishness and idealism that characterises the parson. hypocrisy and intolerance he is confronted with. Fielding makes a synthesis between the comic and the morally serious. because “beauty and excellence” are always best demonstrated by their reverse. cruelty. Along the novel. profession and temperament is represented in his novels. often making him appear ridiculous. but also moral instruction. the essence of Christian morality is not prudence. For the author. He represents what Fielding considers the highest Christian value: goodness.4. both honest and hypocrite priests. Fielding involves him in a multitude of comic situations. active goodness. His fund of Christian idealism is inexhaustible. Every social class.3. his virtues always outshine his occasional foolishness. Virtue and vice are not the “privilege” of a certain class or profession.3. etc. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Character as type The principle of contrast in characterisation 134 . in spite of the many instances of greed. above all. Adams’s unsuspecting nature often gets him in trouble. 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. as for Richardson. Parson Adams’s character remains the moral center of the novel. fulfilling thus the novel’s double aim of entertaining and instructing. the parson combines innocence and simplicity with dignity and learning. not an individual. Fielding resorts to the principle of contrast in characterisation. both loyal and treacherous servants or friends. Parson Adams as a quixotic character 5. Fielding’s fiction displays an immense gallery of characters. in various nuances of behaviour and in its moral diversity. lawyers. By means of techniques of contrast. but they placed their main interest in the individual. in Fielding. Fielding offers aesthetic delight. Defoe and Richardson were also concerned with the relation individual-society. The character of Parson Adams The influence of Cervantes is clear in Fielding’s delineation of Parson* Adams. quickly assimilating his mentor’s lesson and convinced that true Christianity means. Like his literary ancestor.3. and he never seems to learn from disappointing experiences. but good deeds and charity. etc. which often create comic effects. there are both good and bad innkeepers. At the same time. he describes “not men. but manners. which must give substance to faith. doctors. as he himself says. In the beginning. Joseph emerges as morally mature. Joseph appears to follow his sister in his restriction of virtue to the question of chastity. but a species” (Joseph Andrews). and the reader is invited to judge all the other characters against the moral standard that he embodies. Fielding’s panoramic approach led him to find uniform patterns in human behaviour. one of the most successfully accomplished quixotic* characters.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. masters.
of evoking his characters’ social position and moral nature through their language.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. reveals his Augustan view of the writer’s province.3. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. His narrative style is eminently Augustan: articulate and refined. Explain them. 3.2. provide the first theory of the novel.3.4. At the same time. 5. like many Augustan writers. 1.. combining elegant seriousness with wit and irony.” His exploration of the diversity of Human Nature. in the superior corrective efficiency of comedy and its devices. Fielding is the most “Augustan. preoccupied with the reformation of manners.5. incorporated in the substance of his works. at the end of the unit. through its moral and temperamental types. and he tried to give full legitimacy to the novel. defining it in relation with the respectable genres of the epic and drama. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 135 .. Fielding’s Augustanism* Of all 18th century novelists. unaffected. and he believes.. 2. He is a moralist. If they should differ substantially. He had a solid classical education and a strong sense of literary tradition.8. 5.3. His commentaries and reflections on his own art. and 5. of no more than 3 lines / 30 words each. 5. he had the exceptional gift of individualizing his characters through speech. Such reflections show his Neoclassic emphasis on discipline and craftsmanship as essential for successful creation. drawing short comparisons.2..2. read again subchapters 5.4. SAQ 9 Mention at least three features of Fielding’s art of the novel which distinguish him from Defoe and Richardson.
the history of a private life. and his long. of those procedures by which an author “transcribes“ life. at the age of five. This makes his novel a work of metafiction*. He digresses continually. He tells us about his birth only in Volume III. other interesting things to relate. Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) 5. the testing of the possibilities and limits of fiction took the novel into a radical direction. that his father decided to write a “system of education” (Tristrapaedia). which isolates each of them in his mental universe. i. Fielding had demonstrated. unpredictable narrative.4. We learn few things about his life: that his nose was crushed at birth by the doctor’s forceps. 136 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2. instead of a linear narration of a life's story and the rational coherence of an autobiographical retrospective account. that he was. Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Sterne’s only novel was published in instalments: its nine volumes appeared between 1760 and 1768. Tristram suffered a new misfortune: an accidental “circumcision. the priest who baptised Tristram. that parody was a factor of innovation in the development of the novel as a literary genre. However.” when a window sash fell over him owing to the maid’s carelessness. The ultimate question that Sterne raises in his novel is the nature of fictional representation. as well as of Parson Yorick. does not manage to give a shape to his story. at every point.4. Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Tristram’s family is a collection of “originals. Toby and the latter’s devoted servant. Walter. in Joseph Andrews.e. With Sterne. which progressed at a slower pace than the growth of his son. corporal Trim. christened Tristram (a name which evokes the French word “triste”) instead of Trismegistus* as his father had intended.” in every sense. 5. is an erudite philosopher. pedantic discourses are completely incomprehensible to those around him. the narrator. Much more of the narrative is dedicated to the unforgettable figures of his father. that his brother Bobby died suddenly. Tristram. In spite of his promises. that. of his uncle. the relation between life and literature. he seems to have. Walter Shandy. Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel The title of the novel raises in the reader the expectation of an autobiographical narrative.4. His father. a sceptical examination of the conventions of realistic fiction.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.” He is fond of building strange theories and hypotheses about the smallest things.1. His Tristram Shandy has been seen as an anti-novel. moulds reality into a literary pattern.” individuals dominated by some private obsession. by accident. who has read “the oddest books in the universe” and consequently has “the oddest way of thinking. we are drawn into an extremely irregular. These few tragi-comic episodes from Tristram’s early life make him a “small HERO.
generosity. Characterisation by hobby-horse is a negation of conventional means of realistic character delineation. with man as a vulnerable. during the War of the Spanish Succession*. His narrative emphasises a tragi-comic vision of life. Suffering is a permanence in Tristram’s world. Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The characters’ obsessions and idiosyncrasies are an intellectual barrier in their communication. amiability. which were expected to influence a man’s conduct. doomed to pass from sorrow to sorrow. ironic terms. They cannot share their thoughts. gathering “almost as many books on military frontispiece to vol. He transforms his bowling green into a miniature military field. a quixotic figure forming an eccentric couple with corporal Trim. 5. On the other hand. good-humoured. Understandably. which becomes almost a parody of human individuality.1 architecture as Don Quixote was found to have of chivalry. representing there the main battles as they William Hogarth. but the uniqueness of each individual mind.” forgetting (1760) everything in pursuit of his obsession. but they can enter a dialogue of the hearts. and it is either dealt with sentimentally or revealed in its comic absurdity. Wounded in Flanders. to 137 The Shandean view of life Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . However. “My uncle Toby” is the most memorable character in the book.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Among his most eccentric theories. He becomes completely Tristram Shandy. Sterne places emphasis on the sentimental nature of his heroes as an aspect of their “moral character. which influences all his thoughts and actions. were being fought on the continent. character and destiny. Its approach to the frustrations of life is called by Tristram “true Shandeism. uncle Toby continues to live the reality of war through a substitute. above all. pitiful creature. and this is made obvious in their endless conversations recorded in the novel. and discharged from the army. It is not type (social. the early accidents in his son’s life cause him great distress. the members of the Shandy family reach mutual understanding on the affective level. moral or psychological) that interests Sterne.” Toby Shandy is Sterne’s best accomplished sentimental character – the narrator continually praises his uncle’s good nature. Tristram Shandy displays a unique combination of sentimentalism and comedy. Shandean* book” that Tristram is trying to write is meant to do good to the reader’s both heart and head. gentleness. therefore. to preserve good humour in the middle of trouble. uniqueness is achieved in extreme. modesty and. 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 “nonsensical. as comic eccentricity. where compassion and empathy bridge the gap created by their singularity. There are many eccentric characters in 18th century fiction. absorbed in this activity.4. The narrator sees laughter as the ultimate defense of the sensitive soul against life’s miseries and limitations. Tristram calls such obsessions hobby-horses.3.” defined as the capacity to mock at the blows of fate. but in Sterne’s novel all characters are eccentrics.
Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. which enables man to keep a healthy spirit and to get around the evils of life by joking about them. 138 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .3. see again the fall of princes. Ch. at the end of the unit. I. Sterne introduces the theme of Fortune – a theme which he will develop with a characteristic mixture of sentimental pathos and comic wit.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel take a lightly ironic distance from suffering. V. If the difference is considerable. in the Reader) attentively and explain why Tristram’s selfdescription as a “small HERO” suggests a tragi-comic vision of life. Write the answer in the space left below. To remember the features of the tragic hero. SAQ 10 In Vol. as well as the fragment from the Reader. read again subchapter 5. in the Glossary to Unit 2. restricting it to 12 lines / 120 words. Read this short chapter (Text 5..6. It is a combination of wisdom and mirth*.4.
by drawing his attention not only to what is told. drawings and graphs. only in the middle of Volume III that we find the author’s Preface. Digressive narrative Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 139 . watched as if by a slow motion camera. Tristram is earnestly trying to tell the story of his life and his opinions as accurately as possible.4. Typographically. makes the reader aware of them. Sterne’s rambling narrative.5. 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. asterisks. so different from Fielding’s tight. marking a moment of affectionate recollection. coherent plots. there are numberless digressions and interpolated stories. The zigzagging narrative. for instance. Sterne defamiliarises them. The “Shandean” view of writing This ambivalent view of life corresponds. and to involve the reader both imaginatively and sentimentally. Tristram has the consciousness of his tragi-comic predicament. and gives the impression of stagnation. which he calls “the sunshine of reading. the “imperfections of words. The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions By taking extreme freedoms with narrative and compositional conventions.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.” Not only as a man. etc.” The confused chronology and the digressive excesses frustrate also our expectation of a plot. The narrator explicitly refuses to keep the story straight. with its multitude of dashes. The structure of the book is equally odd.e. there are several dedications scattered through the book. i. in Sterne’s novel. does not seem to move towards any climax.4. It is. He thus exaggerates parodically the realistic pursuit of accuracy and immediacy. its unpredictable returns to various moments in the past. points of suspension. Tristram constantly oscillates between the comic despair at his incapacity to master his narrative and the delight he takes in complete narrative freedom. by exploiting them in a parodic way. but also as an author. the book is a comic oddity. the restriction of the hero’s “life” to a few episodes breaks the convention of autobiographical focus. For example. to a certain view of writing.4. 5. even a black sheet introduced at the death of Yorick. Tristram resorts to other means of communication. The difficulty he experiences as a writer is due to the limits of language. This impression is increased by Tristram’s effort to be exhaustive in his presentation. frustrates our expectation of chronological linearity commonly associated with an autobiographical account. with its blank pages for the reader to fill in. Faced with the problems of accurate representation through words. He delights in minute descriptions of postures and small gestures. but also to how it is told. and he takes great delight in digressions.
Tristram draws the narrative “lines. Sterne’s particular approach to narrative correponds to a certain vision of human experience. on the possibilities of fiction to render in an intelligible pattern the elusive. Metafictionally.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. makes Tristram Shandy a work of metafiction.” with their digressions. on the author’s vision of life.e. into the “laboratory” of his literary consciousness. of life as pure chance. i. The unpredictable. The main subject of Sterne’s novel is. Tristram Shandy questions the mimetic illusion that realistic fiction endeavours to create. i. experimental character affords the reader a glimpse into the novelist’s dilemmas and arsenal of choices. formless reality. Tristram Shandy as metafiction The constant reference to the devices and conventions operating in fiction. half-comically – the distinction between subjective and objective time. as it explores – halfseriously. Basically. Another prominent theme with a metafictional relevance is that The theme of time of time and its relation with the imagination. in the first four volumes. Sterne’s literary treatment of the notion of duration makes him a precursor of 20th century modernist writers like James Joyce and Virginia Woolf. random course of the narrative has a correspondent in the theme of Fortune. however. which is connected. metafiction is fiction about fiction. Tristram Shandy may be called the first philosophical novel in English. As metafiction. The meaning of metafiction depends. making the reader aware that “literary time” is arbitrary and conventional. the permanent inquiry into what a novel can do and cannot do. at the structural level. halfsceptical meditation on the condition of literature and its relation with reality. works which call attention to their own devices. with the narrator’s desperate effort to be allinclusive and his incapacity of managing his narrative. the theme of time corresponds to the narrator’s concern with the distinction between the time of writing. In volume VI. The randomness of the narrative is a mirror of the narrator’s sense of his own life as tragi-comically governed by accident. There are themes in Sterne’s Metafictional novel which may be called “metafictional”. ultimately.6. they may be related to themes the problem of fictional representation and its limits. 140 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .e. also concerned with the way in which consciousness refracts external reality. the process of its own writing. Its extravagant. It is a half-amused. the narrated time and the time of reading. One such theme in Tristram Shandy is that of human communication – or rather incommunication –.4. Tristram constantly draws attention to the way in which he manipulates fictional time.
If they differ significantly. Write them in the spaces indicated below. and read the fragment attentively once more.7. the narrator stops and considers his eccentric way of telling it. Henry William Bunbury: Uncle Toby and Trim reviving a scene of war on the bowling green (1773) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 141 .. 1. In this way. and 5. go again through subchapters 5. 2. The fragment is practically about the writing of the novel. using no more than 3 lines / 30 words for each of them. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the author reveals to the reader one aspect of his conception of writing.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 11 Text 5. Read the text and find three reasons for Tristram’s praise of digressions. at the end of the unit. 3.4. Instead of continuing the story. which he discusses in the very text of the work.5.6. in the Reader illustrates the metafictional dimension of Sterne’s novel.4.
and with Robinson Crusoe the middle class hero is imposed on the literary scene. Henry Fielding. and Laurence Sterne. Their works illustrate various aspects and tendencies in the evolution of the genre. self-conscious novel that makes him highly modern. At the beginning of the 18th century. readers along the ages have been able to find a wealth of symbolic meanings and a story of archetypal significance. on the other hand.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. the novel was a minor form. tests the possibilities and limitations of the newly-born literary genre in an experimental. However. Since its settlement on the literary scene. completely ignored by Augustan poetics. You have formed an idea of this diversity from the chapters of this unit. Samuel Richardson. who shares with Fielding the attraction to comedy and parody. Lastly. in a work so committed to the matterof-fact. Fielding. The absence of norms and models made it an exceptionally flexible and inclusive form. This is reflected in the wide diversity of directions in which the novel developed in the 18th century. Defoe illustrates best the new narrative realism that emerged in fiction. to the palpable reality of common objects and actions. but his interest in the psychological complexity of the individual is completed by a remarkable sensitivity to social aspects. which has dealt with four major novelists of this age: Daniel Defoe. this genre has enjoyed unrivalled popularity. 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 . Sterne. We have only concentrated on one novel for each writer. Richardson takes the novel in the direction of the minute analysis of emotion and feeling. selected as an illustration of the most characteristic features of his art. in his novels of manners. 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.
e. or education. hobby horse: a favourite topic or an obsessive. felix culpa: see subchapter 3. Cinderella is the prototype of the obscure and neglected young person. belonging to a high social class (as in gentleman). epistolary manner: in a novel. which became popular in England through translation and imitation. metafiction: literally. The letter (epistle) as a literary species was widely used in the 18th century. a term associated with the aesthetic view according to which the work of art is an imitation – a representation – of reality. a term designating the contemporary mode of fiction – postmodern fiction – which is essentially self-reflexive. minuteness: exactness in the rendering of small detail. mirth: laughter. the way of telling the story through a character’s letters or through an exchange of letters. literally: novel of formation. gaiety. a Fool. He is forced to 143 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in which the poor heroine. whose style. omniscient: describes the perspective of a narrator who appears to know all about the characters and their action. to the lower ranks of society. harpsichord: an old musical instrument. literacy: the ability to read and write. Cinderella: an old fairy story. consisting of a stick with a figure of a horse’s head at one end. Concretely. happiness.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. rogue) – belongs. ends up by marrying Prince Charming. exact representation of life. see again the Glossary in Unit 1). which dominated Western aesthetics until the end of the 18th century. played like a piano. tone. lifelikeness: closeness to life. gentle: of good breeding. The hero – the picaro (i. a hobbyhorse is a toy. persecuted by her stepmother and ugly stepsisters. who achieves success owing to beauty and virtue. parody: the satirical imitation of a serious work.e. or “narcissistic” – i. in which its form becomes explicitly its subject. jester: a professional clown employed by a king or nobleman. characteristically. attitude and subject are deliberately distorted so as to make them appear ridiculous. booby: silly or stupid person. mimetic: the adjective derived from mimesis (Greek: imitation). burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1.3 and the Glossary in Unit 3. picaresque: the origin of English picaresque novels is in the Spanish picaresque fiction of the 16th century. but producing a different sound. fun. parson: an Anglican priest in charge of a local church. “beyond fiction”. It was Aristotle who articulated this theory. Bildungsroman: German term. fixed idea. and he seeks social integration.
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. Shandean: the adjective that Tristram derives from his family name. priggish: describes a person who is strict about rules and correct behaviour and thinks him/herself morally superior to others. having often to go through the experience of humiliation and frustration. Britain joined Austria. quixotic: the word describes a character moulded after Cervantes’s Don Quixote. War of the Spanish Succession: 1702-1713. the famous satirical romance in which the hero’s sense of reality is altered by his obsession with the romantic chivalric ideal.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel • • • • • • find his way in a hostile world by means of his resourcefulness and ingenuity. Puritan: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Don Quixote is an implicit debate on the relation between fiction and reality. “quixotic” indicates an unrealistically optimistic and impractically idealistic approach to life. Gallery of personalities • Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra): Spanish writer (1547-1616). • 144 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Spain and Bavaria in this war fought over the disputed succession to the Spanish throne.e. The high aspirations of this generous. 1615). squire) appear as madness in a world whose reality is obscured to him by the idealism of the old romances. Romantic: see Romanticism in the Glossary in Unit 1. author of Don Quixote de la Mancha (1605. Stimulated by the numberless stories of romantic heroism that he has read. like a knight-errant of former times. Don Quixote starts. on a quest that is both admirable and ridiculous. Prussia and the Netherlands against France. which stands in an ironic contrast with the successive triumphs of the noble hero of romance). honest and brave hidalgo (i.
with special attention to subchapter 4. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%.1. as well as the presentation of the novel you choose to discuss. Horrified. in the Reader presents an incident at the court of Brobdingnag. SAA no.1. the king rejects this tribute.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Send-away assignment no. Gulliver offers him the secret of the recipe for gunpowder.. and Gulliver’s new humiliation will make him partial in the subsequent description of the king’s rule. Text 4. • the coherence. Limit your answer to 35 lines/350 words. You will have.4. You might find it helpful to revise subchapters 5. You may refer both to the general circumstances of the novel’s emergence and its concerns. • the features that make the kingdom of Brobdingnag a utopia of reasonable government.1. 3. 2 This assignment includes tasks concerning both Unit 4 and Unit 5. 2 will count as 20% in your final assessment. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 145 . and to the illustration of those values and attitudes in a particular novel.2. which presents Swift as a master of allegorical satire. 1. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. and its contrast with European civilisation as Gulliver presents it.. revealing candidly to him the “benefits” of this invention. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 20%. Text 5. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). in Book II of Gulliver’s Travels. to revise the preceding unit. Read the fragment carefully and analyse: • the ironic-satirical treatment of Gulliver himself. clarity. Limit your answer to 25 lines / 250 words. who had just pronounced a severe judgement on his civilisation. Remember that. in the context of the novel’s pattern of Puritan autobiography? Your answer should be no longer than 10 lines /100 words. in the Reader represents a fragment from Robinson Crusoe in which the motif of the island is particularly prominent. therefore. The novel as a literary genre both reflects and helps consolidate values and attitudes which define the Age of the Enlightenment. In order to win the good graces of the king. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 30%. as illustrated by this fragment. in grading your paper. and 5.4. Mention at least four aspects in support of this idea. What is the double symbolic significance of Robinson’s island. 2.
4. the capacity for learning from mistakes. but she lives with the deep conviction that in the spiritual order of a Christian world. vividness.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. SAQ 2 1. … novels focused on the ordinary and the familiar aspects of life. 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 . which is given an air of authenticity by the meticulous. realistic account. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. resilience. 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. 4. and also authors of novels. 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. industriousness. all souls are equal. and by the form of autobiographical record. Women were … a consistent part of the novel’s reading public. He delights the reader with an extraordinary adventure and a story of success. rationality. immediacy. optimism. plainness. SAQ 5 factuality. on contemporary social reality and on the experience of the common individual. 2. pragmatism. 5. SAQ 3 Defoe’s own phrase refers to the purpose of his novels: to entertain and to instruct. 3. She will accept humbly her social inferiority. 5. but this is a way of accomplishing more efficiently his honest intention of conveying a moral message. she may be deprived of the privilege of class and fortune. 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. inventiveness. 6. sharp sense of observation. SAQ 4 Tenacity. patience. 2. concreteness. 3. The rise of the middle classes … coincides with the emergence of the novel as a literary genre. In the social order. He thus “cheats” the reader with the illusion of truth.
The narrative manner: unlike Defoe and Richardson.” The image of the “ungracious Duchess” – Fortune – pelting him with a series of “cross [i.” but in “pitiful misadventures.F SAQ 9 1. 2. It prevents the writing from ending – it allows the writer to go on indefinitely. 5. since the letters usually record moments of crisis in the character’s experience. 2. they create a sort of suspense. Fielding finds the omniscient point of view more suitable to his intentions.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel will. forbidding the reading “appetite” to fail and bringing in variety. Fielding displays the elegance and refinement of the Augustan ideal of style. He is a “small HERO” because the misfortunes of his life do not consist in some “great or signal evil. It allows a more profound insight into the character’s mind. 2. his gifts and virtues set him above common people. he is concerned with human types. that is. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 147 .T.e unfavourable] accidents” is in comic contrast with the ideas of tragic disaster and the fall of the great. 6. 3F. 3. This technique may thus give a dramatic quality to the narrative. who write in the first person. In this way. He is always a prominent figure. enjoying title. 2. you should think first of the features of a tragic hero. as well as a paradoxical combination of social conformity and rebelliousness. The reader is made witness to the most private thoughts of the character. wealth and power. living and the act of writing overlap each other. SAQ 10 In formulating your answer. which makes her sensitive to any form of power abuse. it enables the author to give greater psychological complexity to the characters. but in the way in which the individual embodies general traits of human nature.T. The conception of character: he is interested not in the uniqueness of individuals. This is not Tristram’s case. SAQ 7 1. SAQ 8 1. 8. 3. Digressions keep the reader’s curiosity awake.T. His style: while the style of Defoe and Richardson is closer to the plainness of common speech. Her statement reflects the strength of her sense of individual worth.F. 3. The use of digressions is meant to show Tristram’s narrative skill and constitutes a mark of his originality. SAQ 11 1.T. and this impression of unmediaded communication strengthens his belief in the character’s sincerity. 4.T. It creates a greater sense of suspense and anticipation. 7.
179-195. 217-231. 712-718. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 53-59. vol. The English Novel. Penguin Books Limited. 731-736) 3. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Walter. Macsiniuc. 2003 (pp.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Further reading 1. 701-704. Daiches. 37-42. 598-602.3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). 43-46. 116127. 76-80) 2. A Critical History of English Literature. 143-163. 234-238) 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The English Eighteenth Century: The Novel in Its Beginnings. 1991 (pp. Cornelia. David. Allen. 1969 (pp.
6.1. 6.4. 126.96.36.199.1.3.2. 188.8.131.52.2. 6.4.1. 6. 6.English pre-Romantic poetry UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY Unit Outline 6 6.1. 6. 6.6.4. 6. 6. 6.2. 6.4. 6. 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 . 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. 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. 6.2. 184.108.40.206.1. 6.4. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.4.3.2. The Seasons William Cowper.4.3. 220.127.116.11.7.4.
to bring the significant aspects of human life and behaviour into the light of public attention. Samuel Richardson) is one manifestation of this tendency. the century of the Enlightenment was not without paradoxes and contradictions. with its emphasis on order. and for night as a setting. Neoclassicism*. was eminently the Age of Reason. and Fielding). led to an increasing attention to emotional response. however. The concern with personal. and the sensibility that it cultivated favoured the rise of the Gothic novel. which became the vehicle for the expression of private feeling and assumed a personal voice. The sentimental novel* (e. Pope. harmony. Swift. the cult of Reason favoured an attitude of humanitarianism and social benevolence.g. subjective experience is displayed not only in fiction. discipline. One trend in the 18th century poetry of meditation was the preference for the expression of melancholy and dark thoughts. Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The eighteenth century. The interest in individual psychology.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. regarded art as the product of civilisation. which in turn favoured the emergence of the cult of Feeling. and cultivated its public relevance. Literature was called to deal with matters of public interest. as well as the preoccupation of 18th century analytic thought with the workings of the human mind. but also in a new kind of meditative poetry. Addison. This new poetic trend ran counter to the optimistic confidence of the Age of Reason.1. elegance and decorum*. Like any modern age. whose literary-artistic expression was the Neoclassical doctrine. the century of the Enlightenment*. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling 150 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . as is proved by the works of the great Augustan writers (Steele. For instance. The optimism and pragmatism of a rational age which believed in progress were reflected in literature as well.
Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. Young and other poets formed a distinct trend in the mideighteenth century.” and to have collected them in the Ossian Highlands of Scotland*. supposed to have lived in the 3rd century A.D. 1782) What Macpherson presented as a great primitive Celtic epic turned out to be entirely his own imaginary creation.1. and it exerted an immense influence both in England and on the Continent. The lamentations of the blind bard evoke an ancient world of heroic virtue. Celtic* and Norse* legend and mythology. Macpherson’s “Ossianic poems” are pieces of highly rhetorical poetic prose. whose life had passed in complete anonymity.1. legendary Irish bard and hero Ossian. The interest in early poetry Another tendency which announced a change in literary sensibility was a new sense of the past. and the dominant tone is that of nostalgia and regret. but its influence on the birth of Romanticism* in England and on the Continent was huge. and misty. published in 1765 by James Macpherson (17361796). which awakened a steady interest in older poetic styles. In 1765. 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. Edward Young (1683-1765) 6. imitating partly the cadence of biblical verses and of Milton’s blank verse. The fascination with the Middle Ages is another feature which illustrated the rise of the Romantic sensibility. This new interest was reflected in the curiosity about “primitive* poetry” – biblical poetry. His long poem in nine books. sublime landscapes. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 151 . death and immortality.1. whose basic motifs were the shortness and sorrows of life and the inexorable passage of time. but its subject and mood are preRomantic. Its gloomy setting – the churchyard. Thomas Percy published a collection of mediaeval ballads. and folk literature in general.2. He also claimed that their author was the (painted by Nicolai Abildgaard. The most spectacular manifestation of this interest is the volume Poems of Ossian. It is in this tradition that one of the most popular poems in English must be placed: Elegy written in a Country Churchyard. The poetry of melancholy meditation Edward Young is one of the most important representatives of this new kind of reflective poetry. The perfect form of Gray’s poem shows his classical training. is the most outstanding expression of this new spirit in poetry. Night Thoughts (1742-1745). which contrasts with the Augustan focus on contemporary civilisation. known as the Graveyard School of poetry. with tombstones lit by the pale moon – contributed to the birth of the taste for Gothic. wild.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. It begins with the contemplation of the landscape. It consisted in long blank verse* meditations on such things as earthly vanity. by Thomas Gray (1716-1771). Macpherson claimed to have translated these poems from “the Gaelic or Erse* language.
English pre-Romantic poetry In 1770. is a pre-Romantic reaction against Neoclassic literary decorum. The melancholy poetry of the Graveyard School. regarding him as a martyr. … Chatterton is also the author of a literary “fraud. These poems displayed lyric grace and the promise of talent. … 3. … for the pre-Romantic poetry of melancholy meditation. The completed sentences will describe aspects of the emergence of a pre-Romantic current in 18th century poetry. who claimed to have translated an ancient Celtic epic poem by the legendary Ossian. Chatterton committed suicide. SAQ 1 Read the partial statements below and match them. The publication. young Thomas Chatterton (1752-1770). the victim of an (1856) insensitive and hostile world. 1. at the end of the unit. If you have failed to make the right match for every sentence. of Thomas Percy’s collection of ballads.” presenting his own poems as authentic mediaeval verse. … as well as Gothic fiction. d. with its taste for the macabre and the supernatural. The churchyard was a favourite setting … 2. aspiring to poetic fame. read again the previous subchapters. c. … the pre-Romantic interest in the Middle Ages and popular poetry. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Like James Macpherson. in 1765. … a. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. with its gloomy atmosphere. When his literary fraud was exposed. published a volume of poems presented as belonging to the mediaeval poet-monk Thomas Rowley. 152 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . reflected… 4. The coming generation of Romantic poets turned by Henry Wallis him into a legend. but they proved to be (like the Ossianic poems) entirely the product of Chatterton’s inflamed Death of Chatterton. imagination. b. Write the correct sequel in the space provided for each sentence.
Under the influence of Jean Jacques Rousseau*. Elements of a pre-Romantic sensibility can be found all along the century. but also literary forms.g. The rural universe in 18th century poetry The emerging Age of Sensibility oriented the critical spirit. the new feeling for nature – these were features indicating that literary taste was changing. the inspiration from folk myths and legends. The great novelists (e. The pre. There was a growing suspicion that civilisation may have a corrupting effect on man’s innate goodness. The emphasis on sentimental response. William Blake would call the heroic couplet* the “great cage” of Augustan poetry.1. and indeed the tendency along the century was to abandon it for poetic forms that allowed more freedom. In the following subchapters.Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The transition from the Augustan to the Romantic age was slow and long. the state of nature began to be idealised. Samuel Taylor Coleridge). the interest in rural life and its contrast with civilisation. busy life of the city with moral confusion. such as the song and the ballad. A return to blank verse – for which Shakespeare and Milton were the great models – allowed greater flexibility of expression.2. and the emergence of a distinct poetic attitude towards nature. valued for their simplicity and directness by the first Romantics (William Wordsworth. 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. characteristic of the Enlightenment.3. the interest in the local and national past. an interest developed in popular forms of poetry. and the simplicity of country life with moral virtue.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. In the latter part of the century. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 153 . The sentimental opposition between town and country was to become a convention in 18 th century literature. The return to blank verse 6. Towards the end of the century. Henry Fielding) would often associate the turbulent. This change in taste concerned not only themes and subjects. and the 18 th century abounded in optimistic utopias about an idyllic. sometimes within the context of Augustan conventions. patriarchal society in which men could enjoy fully their natural right to freedom. towards the highest achievement of man’s Reason: civilisation itself.
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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English pre-Romantic poetry
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)
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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English pre-Romantic poetry
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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Thomson practically inaugurated the trend of descriptive-meditative poetry. Pre-Romantic nature poetry One of the most significant shifts in poetic sensibility was the new attitude to nature. in its magnificence and diversity. than the works of Nature. Each of the four parts of the poem describes seasonal aspects of nature and rural life. The Seasons In the Preface to the fourth part of The Seasons. It appealed both to the Augustans and to the Romantics. His poem educated. James Thomson.” inspired many other poets along the 18th century. The Seasons has a unity ensured by the recurrent themes and motifs related to the observable natural universe.” Thomson confesses that he knows “of no other subject more elevating. the splendour of summer.3.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. 6. not only the perception of nature. Thomson is also famous for the patriotic lyrics that he wrote for the song Rule. nature. Samuel Johnson said. “Winter. the philosophical reflection. As Dr. and the moral sentiment.3. as well as his glorification of “retirement in solitude” as the best state in which to “sing the works of nature. The Augustans were interested in nature only to the extent that it helped them emphasise the conquests of civilization. more ready to awake the poetical enthusiasm. an expression of national pride.” 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. with a remarkable attention to detail and precision of notation. and that he never yet has felt what Thomson impresses. James Thomson (1700-1748) 158 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . praise of friends. and the apparent cruelty of winter.1. “The reader of The Seasons wonders that he never saw before what Thomson shows him. poetic renderings of current notions of natural history. becomes an object of interest in itself. in which the descriptive detail was often used in order to create a certain mood. With James Thomson (1700-1748) and his long poem The Seasons (1726-1730). His praise of nature and of the countryside. exerting a considerable influence on both of them. manifest as early as the 1730s. but also the feeling for it. Thomson evokes the glory and joy of reviving nature in spring. It contains reflections on the natural and social condition of man and on Nature as the manifestation of the divine ordering mind. The conventional Augustan “local” poem (or “topographical” poem*) looked at nature from the perspective of historical or classical mythological associations. In spite of its eclectic nature.” The Seasons marked an important moment in 18th century poetry. Britannia. in many generations of readers. political comments. the peace of autumn – bringer of “Philosophic Melancholy” –. more amusing. etc. patriotic enthusiasm.
He reaches perfection in his famous Ode to Evening (1746).. and his feeling for Nature is that of a pre-Romantic. in a paragraph of no more than 6 lines / 60 words.” Autumnal nature favours a contemplative-meditative mood.2. whose work brings into harmony the various tendencies in 18th century poetry. The Task has actually been described as a spiritual autobiography. which the poet calls “Philosophic Melancholy” (remember Milton’s Il Penseroso*. but his blank verse poem has a much more personal tone. Passages of moral and political commentary. social satire. the poem The Task (1785) by William Cowper (1731-1800) reflects a similar attraction to the theme of nature. living in retirement from the city. “Autumn.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 4 Read Text 6. and he displayed the Augustan taste for stylistic refinement. which actually inspired Thomson). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 159 . in popular superstitions and the supernatural. in which a sensitive and thoughtful Christian. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. but his subjects anticipate the Romantic sensibility. read text C again.3. He was interested in the mediaeval past. unrhymed stanzas.3. more carefully. Cowper displays an Augustan concern for elegance and refinement in expression. from the third part. with its short. The Task Much closer in time to the beginning of the Romantic Age. William Cowper. records his observations and reflections. William Collins 6. Like Thomson and Collins. How does the Philosophic Melancholy influence the poet? Answer below. at the end of the unit. religious meditations and character sketches accompany Cowper’s celebration of rural domestic happiness and communion with nature. If there should be major differences. which represents a fragment from Thomson’s The Seasons – more exactly. He preferred the classical form of the ode*. One of Thomson’s great admirers was William Collins (17211759). in which he captures with precision and delicacy the crepuscular atmosphere.
SAQ 5 Text 6. T. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. like gardening. The contemplation of nature has a healing effect on Cowper. Cowper displays a remarkable eye for detail and a landscape-painter’s sense of perspective. but the joy of communion with friends. fearing that “The town has tinged [i. in the 18th century. in which he can find shelter against depression and anxiety. indicate an affectionate observer. domestic activities. 160 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Wordsworth. which he opposes to the civilisation of the city. Read this fragment and explain why Cowper finds the countryside superior to the urban world. the peace and quiet of village life. in the Reader.e. concerning the opposition country/town. Your answer should not exceed 10 lines / 100 words. Rural “domestic happiness” seems to him “the only bliss. His meticulous descriptions of countryside scenery and animal life. / Paradise that has survived the fall. of the seasonal diversity of natural aspects. and of simple. Read again the fragment if you answer is significantly different.4. with its vices and follies. however. at the end of the unit. Retirement to the countryside does not mean for him idle solitude – it is not isolation that he seeks in rural nature. extracted from Cowper’s The Task. and his expressions of gratitude for the spiritual comfort and superior joys that it offers anticipated the first generation of English Romantics (W. represents one of the most memorable statements.English pre-Romantic poetry illustration by Birket Foster. As a poet of nature. 1856 The Task. Cowper’s love of nature is closely linked to his love of the countryside. affected] the country. Coleridge). S. he becomes aware of the instability of this last retreat from the confusions and corruption of modern urban civilisation.” Sometimes. He praises the simple pleasures.
Milton. Blake did not publish his poems in conventional printed form. He was a relatively marginal figure during his lifetime. Blake’s late fame is due. He was not only a poet. but also a gifted painter and engraver. minute work of mediaeval miniaturists and their illuminated* manuscripts. The theme of childhood in this work enables Blake to explore the opposition nature . widening the range of meanings. William Blake. the visionary artist William Blake holds a unique place in the history of English literature. finding literary inspiration in the simplicity and directness of popular poetry. Songs of Innocence and of Experience (1794). Apart from a volume of early verse. 6. and being regarded as an eccentric artist. “unfit for human fellowship” and “dead” to “love and friendship both” (Cowper). and his creative personality manifested itself in combined and complementary modes of expression. and recognised as one of the most original creators.4. Gray.English pre-Romantic poetry Both Thomson and Cowper see a strong connection between love of nature and a humanitarian spirit. In his first great illuminated work. the rural setting. in the tone and rhythms of Biblical psalms and religious hymns. Thomson. He associates nature with the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 161 . The combination of calligraphic text. which was accompanied by drawings and decorations. William Blake (1757-1827) 6. whose attitudes and concerns define him sharply as an anti-Augustan.4. and Macpherson. all Blake’s major poems were composed in this way. these various dimensions of his works shed light on each other. and displays the same humanitarian spirit as his contemporaries. He was an admirer of Shakespeare. In Blake. exerting influence only on a small circle of friends and admirers. 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. Nature “nurses” the sympathy for our fellow beings. Each copy was then coloured by hand. to the special way in which he produced his work. rendered in its pastoral simplicity. These beliefs – in Nature as a moral teacher and as a guide for imagination – were central to the creed of the first Romantics. Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake is often regarded as a pre-Romantic poet. to a large extent. and he rejected the classical standards of style. Like other pre-Romantic poets.1. he turns his attention to the rural world. picture and decoration reminds of the painful.civilisation. our sense of a common fate for all humanity. It was in the latter half of the 19th century that he was rediscovered by a group of poets and painters. and this laborious process restricted the number of copies that Blake could produce. represents symbolically the uncorrupt order of nature. He used a special method for engraving and printing the handwritten text.
2. Blake. The classical Muses were for him the “Daughters of Memory”*. Jerusalem: “I must create a system. and his whole work.” He is a true Romantic in his belief that poetic creation is a spontaneous.” Blake worshipped Imagination as the only true way to spiritual freedom. whom Blake (like the other Romantics) venerated. for instance: “I copy Imagination. 6. Like the other English Romantics. and he denounces the evils of civilisation. They are. a tribute to Milton. He distrusted all systems of thought and institutions that restrained man’s freedom and imagination. says. Los*. 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. Blake was a rebel. One of Blake’s mythological creatures in these poems. original and strange.English pre-Romantic poetry innocence of man in his condition before the Fall – the “childhood” of humanity –.” asserting that ”Imagination has nothing to do with Memory. and he opposed to them the “Daughters of Inspiration. or be enslaved by another man’s. His rebellion against the “systems” which limit the energies of the Imagination takes a literary form in his Prophetic Books*. and whom he saw as the embodiment of the revolutionary impulse. the Romantic visionary Blake is also frequently assimilated to the first generation of Romantic poets. / I will not reason and compare: my business is to create. Plate from the poem Jerusalem (1805-1820). which oppresses man in the name of Reason and Progress.4.” This is Blake’s own creed.” or “I write when commanded by spirits. He insisted on the visionary and inspired quality of his writings – he asserted. is one of the most powerful assertions of Romantic creativity. by William Blake 162 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in which Blake creates a mythology of his own. in Blake’s last poem. a prophet. in a way. unpremeditated act.
Laughing Song. 163 Songs of Innocence (1789) Title page of Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 Read the following sentences and identify the four true statements which describe features of Blake’s work. As the poet emphasises in the Introduction. Songs of Innocence marked a new departure in English poetry. or Cradle Song offer a glimpse into a world filled with simple. with its repertoire of rhetorical conventions. Blake is a creator of myths in his Prophetic Books. enjoy] to hear. T F 6. T F 4.3. innocent delights. T F 5. Blake’s works combine the handwritten text with picture and decoration – a technique that reminds of mediaeval manuscripts. at the end of the unit. In Songs of Innocence and of Experience. It was the year of a revolution in poetry as well. The subchapter that follows will acquaint you with some of the poems illustrating Blake’s “double vision” in Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). revise the whole subchapter. As a poet. by their remarkable lyrical delicacy.e. For Blake. Spring. If you have made mistaken choices. The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence In 1789 – the year of the French Revolution –.4. which are the expression of his Romantic rebellion against all forms of constraint. 1. The extreme formal simplicity and the apparent lack of sophistication of these short poems anticipated the Romantic rejection of poetic diction*. poetic creation was the spontaneous fruit of inspiration. 6. their clarity of expression and their musicality. that is. The main influence in Blake’s work were the ancient Greek and Latin poets admired by the Augustans. The Shepherd. T F 7. which echoed the rhythms of popular verse. T F 3. echoing with laughter and sustained by love and by the belief in the goodness of nature. these are “happy songs / Every child may joy [i. and the three statements that are false. Blake enjoyed a great popularity during his lifetime.” They build a charming picture of the universe of childhood. Poems like Infant Joy. of the world seen through the eyes of the child. The Blossom. and its origin was visionary experience. The Echoing Green. the association of childhood with edenic nature is opposed to civilisation as the fallen condition of man. Blake composed his first significant work: Songs of Innocence. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. What chiefly impressed Blake in Milton’s Paradise Lost was its astonishing display of classical-humanistic erudition. T F 2.
For Blake. It is a world in which evil has not penetrated and in which there is no suffering.” can “laugh away care. and the perception of childhood was greatly influenced by Jean Jacques Rousseau’s ideas. Blake rejected the praise of Reason as man’s supreme faculty and proclaimed instead the importance of man’s “Poetic Genius. or even Jesus.” Throughout his work. Rousseau believed in the original innocence of man. Blake identifies Jesus with the Imagination. taking care of his flock of innocent lambs. which a proper education should develop.e. although the sun has set. the guardian angel. According to him. gratified desire. The world of Innocence is the paradise of freedom.” 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. with white hair. The child has a kind of wisdom which comes from the freshness and freedom of his imagination. Innocence. allows the children more time to play “on the green [i. the Songs of Innocence display protective figures like the caring mother or nurse. childhood represents the unfallen state of man. who express their candid feelings of piety and uninhibited joy. love. “Old John. The adult figures represented in these poems share the child’s freshness of perception and capacity for joy. and absence of frustration or inhibition. suggesting the child’s closeness to a protective divinity. 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. The innocence associated with childhood is for him the equivalent of the original state of paradisal innocence. The pastoral figure of the shepherd receives in Blake a Christian connotation. in his natural tendency to virtue. Blake filtered these ideas through his own intense idealism and his unconventional religious beliefs. in Nurse’s Song. because she has the empathic understanding of the children’s need for freedom. the shepherd. The good shepherd. The pastoral setting symbolises the closeness of man to a benevolent nature and the bliss enjoyed by man in Paradise. In The Echoing Green. In these poems. does not mean ignorance. meadow]”. with which Blake was acquainted. associated with childhood. The nurse.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. is a biblical allusion. Besides the children themselves. and every child is a manifestation of the Divine Imagination in the world. Infant Joy (Songs of Innocence) 164 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
Focus on the way in which the child imagines the creator of the lamb. 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.5. in the Reader. which reproduces Blake’s poem The Lamb. and in which he represents to himself its “making.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 7 Read Text 6. If there should be a significant difference between them. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 165 .” Answer in the space below.
of “stony laws*”. but. 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 world is seen through the eyes of an angry observer. In The Chimney Sweeper*. 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. 166 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . i. when this life ends. full of indignation and anger.4. A poem like A Poison Tree points out Title page of the murderous effects of secret hate. but the child in the poem is comforted by the vision of the Angel. 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 thirst for war. even sarcastic. Like the chimney sweeper. the ethical and social implications are more obvious. of the prejudices and constraints with which man “enchains” his own mind. or the mind of others. standing equal before God. poverty and oppression. for instance.5. Blake’s speakers in these poems are often bitter and ironic. In The Little Black Boy – an anti-slavery poem –. in the poems that he added in 1794: the Songs of Experience.4. and Nurse’s Song shows the (1794) jealousy consuming an adult who has lost the vision of Innocence.e. which deny man his freedom. nature. Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence Blake’s graceful Songs of Innocence may appear to be simple and transparent. which is a promise of divine mercy. The Clod and the Pebble Songs of Experience contrasts selfless with selfish love.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. The complete work offered now a set of contrary symbolic visions of man. envy and deceit. often. society and divinity. In London. the reader cannot help noticing paradoxes and contradictions. it is suggested that human suffering and oppression is the result of “mind-forged manacles*”. love and joy have been replaced by fear. The fall from the paradise of Innocence to Experience is the entrance in a world of rules and constraints. 6. the child has a wonderful vision of all souls freed from their “clouds” of flesh – black or white –. The serene and peaceful pastoral setting of the world of Innocence is set in opposition with the sombre world of Experience. The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Blake developed such implications into open statements. However.4. the greed of the powerful and their indifference to the sufferings caused by social injustice. In Songs of Experience. in which man’s lot is hard work. disease. hate. protesting against the evils of his time. Beyond the children’s innocent visions of happiness and harmony. The poet attacks the tyranny exercised on the individual by the church and state. In the fallen state of Experience. the reader cannot miss the implicit reference to the social reality of children’s exploitation and cruel treatment. a gloomy reality makes itself felt sometimes. for instance.
innocent question (“Little Lamb. in the Reader – and find out in its lines suggestions for at least one aspect which defines this “dangerous” world. Knowledge in the world of Experience The clarity and directness of Songs of Innocence is replaced.6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 167 . The speaker in the latter poem wonders not only who created the “fearful symmetry” of the powerful. in Songs of Experience. in a paragraph of 10 lines / 100 words at the most. SAQ 8 In Blake’s poem Infant Sorrow. The implication is that knowledge in the state of Experience is always incomplete and fragmentary. Read this poem – Text 6. by ambiguity and even obscurity.e. who made thee [i. and the rhythms of the poems are also more difficult. This suggests that the world of Experience is more opaque and uncertain. at the end of the unit. with no explicit answer.6. provoking more anxiety than certainty. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The two stanzas of The Lamb contain the child’s simple. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. dangerous tiger. Quote the respective words or line(s) and give your comment in the space below. but also if this creator is also that of the gentle lamb. you]?) and his own answer. 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.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. If it should differ in major respects.4. the event of a child’s birth becomes the symbol of the fall into the world of Experience. while The Tyger consists only in an accumulation of questions.
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. Love and Hate are necessary to Human existence. and he is also a child. The church. 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. was seen by Blake as an instrument by which the church kept men in a state of obedience.7. and King” “make up a Heaven of our misery. compared with “flowers” and “Thames’ waters. a stern. but with ways of seeing and feeling. “contrary states of the human soul. since those are “babes reduced to misery. the spectator to the same scene has a quite different vision.4. There is a Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience as well. as Blake indicated in the subtitle. and His Priest. in Blake’s view: “Attraction and Repulsion.” The idea of Heaven as a reward of happiness for earthly misery. The double vision in Blake’s Songs Several other poems in Songs of Experience have a counterpart in Songs of Experience. in Songs of Experience. but he seems to be fully aware of his condition in an unjust world.” The angry speaker protests against the duplicity of a society that feeds its poor “with cold and usurous* hand. bearing even the same titles. Contraries are essential to progression. 168 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . with its “mysteries”*. The two poems entitled Holy Thursday* deal with the hypocrisy of the church. He sees nothing “holy” in the beautiful picture. The Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience is bitterly ironic about the way in which “God. He displays.” Blake’s Songs suggest that Innocence and Experience are not only inevitable stages in human growth. in fact.English pre-Romantic poetry 6.” which lead to contrary visions. was responsible. in Blake’s view. This is the God of the world of Experience. One of the targets of Blake’s critical attacks is the Church. Reason and Energy*. They reveal.” In the counterpart poem. which are thus strengthening their own power. A deeply religious person.” Such corresponding poems illustrate the fact that Innocence and Experience are not necessarily to be associated with ages in man’s life. like that of Hell as a punishment for sin. imposing constraints and inflicting punishment. In the poem of Innocence.” in a country that is “rich and fruitful. which allows the rich and powerful of this world to ease their conscience and “buy” Heaven by occasional and festive acts of charity. Blake hated nevertheless the church as an institution. but also complementary aspects of man’s imagination. for keeping man at a distance from God.” or with a “multitude of lambs. served by the institutionalised churches. tyrannical figure. indeed. seeing it as an instrument of oppression and a source of corruption.
to 6. but he is no longer able to do that. The two “states of the human soul” are here set in contrast. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 9 The poem The Garden of Love – Text 6.4. If there should be major differences between them. and read the poem again more carefully. in the Reader – tells the story of the loss of Innocence and the entrance in the state of Experience.4..2. except as an act of remembering. The speaker’s “journey” to the garden of Love is an attempt to revive the former state. at the end of the unit. Read the poem carefully and identify the symbols by means of which the two states are contrasted. revise subchapters 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 169 .1. Explain them in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. to regain the vision of Innocence.7.
the interest in early poetry. He condemns the literary habit of idealising the countryside. The last subchapter.4. The fascination of James Macpherson with Britain’s Celtic past. Their poetry displays an unprecedented attention to natural detail. in whose work pre-Romantic and Romantic elements meet. nature-civilisation. Subchapter 6. imagination and feelings. you have been acquainted with two poets who turned their attention to the rural universe. by focusing on those tendencies in poetry which prefigure the Romantic Age.2. the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience completing each other. The theme of childhood is examined in several Songs.English pre-Romantic poetry Summary This unit aims at enlarging your picture of the literary diversity of the 18th century.3. The transition from the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling in the 18th century was accompanied by changes in literary taste. 6.. The “Graveyard” poets (e. Oliver Goldsmith emphasises the idyllic happiness of the traditional rural civilisation.. The other feature is primitivism. now threatened by the march of Progress. The same theme and situation acquires contrary implications. George Crabbe adopts a more realistic and critical view. and of Thomas Chatterton with the Middle Ages anticipates the Romantic spirit. deals with the way in which poets like James Thomson. Another feature of 18th century pre-Romantic poetry is the perception of rural life in its close connection with Nature. His Songs of Innocence and of Experience are the testimony of the visionary artist. The latter may be also seen as complementary aspects of poetic imagination. The theme of Nature in pre-Romantic poetry is sometimes closely associated with the opposition country-town. as Blake’s “double” poems suggest. and seeks to arouse compassion for the life of labour and poverty of the English peasant. presents the outstanding figure of William Blake. 170 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The first subchapter of this unit deals with two prominent features announcing the Romantic sensibility. g. and they acknowledge Nature’s subtle influence on man’s thoughts. In subchapter 6. William Collins and William Cowper approach the theme of Nature. who sees the opposition nature-civilisation in the light of the myth of Paradise and of the Fall. Edward Young and Thomas Gray) illustrate this new trend. in its relation with “the two contrary states of the human soul”: Innocence and Experience. One of them is the emergence of a kind of meditative poetry fond of melancholy themes and gloomy settings.
because the life of the poor was not actually reflected in such official records. which they could climb more easily. ruins. children were often employed for the cleaning of chimneys. Their father was Zeus. Daughters of Memory: in Greek mythology. graveyards. for the sake of more profitable farming. putting fences round) common land. Gothic novel: a type of fiction that emerged in opposition with the realistic novel in the 18th century. Haunted castles. and horror. A tendency in 18th century poetry went precisely against this rule. and they were forced to find work in towns or to emigrate to America. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.e. Celtic refers also to the language spoken by the Celts. Sometimes. in Unit 4. civilisation rural universe primitivism melancholy sentimentalism humanitarianism childhood imagination Innocence and Experience double vision Glossary • • • annals: yearly record of events. or Erse. Celtic: related to the Celts. decorum: see subchapter 4. enclosure: in the latter half of the 18th century. favour melancholy or morbid themes. Imagination was free Energy.English pre-Romantic poetry Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● pre-Romantic nature vs. Initially. passion. Ireland and Wales. the term “Gothic” referred to the mediaeval inspiration of such tales of mystery. which has survived in parts of Scotland. as the next subchapter will show.2. enclosed portions of land were turned into private parks and gardens. The Neoclassic principle of decorum did not. 171 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Energy: for Blake. It was a kind of work that contributed to the child mortality rate. the nine Muses were indeed the daughters of Mnemosyne. while Reason was concerned with setting limits. The Celtic variety spoken in Ireland and Scotland is called Gaelic. the enclosures meant ruin. goddess of Memory. for instance. the members of an Indo-European people who inhabited Britain before the arrival of the Romans. The first Gothic novel was Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (1764). Gray is sadly ironic.2. chimney sweeper: in the 18th century. For the small farmers. the changes in agriculture led to the enclosing (i. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.
Blake distinguished between the prohibitive divinity of the Old Testament.1. Primitivism in literature refers to the admiration for and revival of early forms. orphaned children from the charity schools to St. Il Penseroso: see again subchapter 3.3.1. See also subchapter 4. Neoclassicism: see the Glossary in Unit 1. used to secure the hands of a prisoner. in Unit 1. on which the Ten Commandments were written. and he rejected the pretense of the Church to intermediate between man and God. etc. in Unit 3. It is associated with the reaction against Neoclassicism. Los: Blake’s mythological character represents human Imagination in his epics.) poetic diction: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. The feeling of nostalgia for a supposed Golden Age and the praise of the “state of Nature” are also features of primitivism. A Prophecy. Jerusalem. philosophical and political convictions. who attacked and sometimes settled in parts of Britain between the 8th and 11th centuries. Norse: related to the ancient Scandinavian people.3. Paul’s Cathedral. ode: see the Glossary in Unit 1.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • secret chambers and corridors. to attend the religious service. with His laws formulated as interdictions. when the ascension of Christ is celebrated. especially to the Vikings (or Norsemen). in Unit 5. Prophetic Books: the generic name for Blake’s longer (and often obscure) epics. belonging to the beginnings. Romanticism: see again Romantic in the Glossary in Unit 1. the 39th day after Easter. sentimental novel: see subchapter 5. and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 172 . Pity. etc. luxury and materialism of urban civilisation. primitive: original.2. The Book of Los. The Four Zoas. Highlands of Scotland: the mountainous area in northern Scotland. Holy Thursday: another name for Ascension Day. concerning the typology of the novel in the 18th century. Milton. and in which he gives an allegorical shape to his religious. illuminated (about a piece of writing): decorated by the application of colour. manacles: a pair of iron rings linked by a chain. which still preserves elements of the ancient Gaelic culture. unfeeling – is intensified by Blake’s allusion to Moses and the Tables of the Law. wild landscapes. which have a complex structure of symbolism and analogies. mysteries: the system of sacramental rites affording access to divinely revealed truths.. were typical settings in Gothic fiction. stony laws: the figurative meaning of “stony” – heartless. Among the most important of them are America. the Passions. The Book of Urizen. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. Blake associated “mystery” with secrecy and deceit. as well as against the sophistication. or of gold or silver paint. The custom in London was to bring the poor. 2 in Unit 4. Most of Collins’s odes are addressed to personified abstractions (Fear.
Point out the pre-Romantic themes and attitudes that these poems illustrate. 3 will count as 10% in your final assessment. Pay special attention to the images in these poems and to their symbolic significance. Your commentary should not exceed 50 lines / 500 words. • 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. 6.. Remember that. with his law of love. 3 The Reader includes some of the “pair poems” from Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Nurse’s Song. meant to win a patron’s favour. 6. gardens or estates.11. He condemned social inequality and regarded the sovereignty of the people as the only legitimate form of political power. and Holy Thursday (Texts 6.9. • the coherence. SAA no. whose radicalism strongly influenced the ideology of the French Revolution. clarity. The Chimney Sweeper. and 6. 6.” usurous: from usury. Many topographical poems were praises of particular parks. Send-away assignment no.8. in grading your paper. topographical poem: a poem in which the description of a landscape is accompanied by meditation and historical retrospection.10.. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 173 .12. 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). Pay special attention to the instructions for the task. 6. Jean Jacques: (1712-1778): French writer and philosopher. Tyger: Blake’s spelling of “tiger..).English pre-Romantic poetry • • • Jesus..13. 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%).
to enable him to bear more easily the burden of life. SAQ 5 The first line of the fragment contains the implication that everything made by God is perfect. nor wished to change his place” 3. the vagants’] wanderings. d. b. Their hard life has no room for illusions about the comforts of old age. love of nature.e. the country is therefore morally superior to the city. “More skilled to raise the wretched than to rise” 4. and on his thoughts. For Cowper. whereas what man makes is inevitably deficient. he focuses sharply on the withered tree.” “expiring” fire suggest overwork. Crabbe presents a desolate picture. Health and virtue are God’s “gifts” to man. and love of man. 174 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . “passing rich with forty pounds a year” SAQ 3 In contrast with Goldsmith’s idealised image of rural happiness and ease. Meditation leads to illumination. c SAQ 2 1. all intensified. 3. There is a general sense of decay and exhaustion in the humble scene in the cottage: the “pale” mother. “Unpractised he to fawn. 4. the mind can see beyond the “dim” surface of things. these gifts are “threatened” – the life of pleasure and luxury with which the city tempts man may corrupt his moral fiber. Its bare. “Remote from towns he ran his godly race.” vitality and cheerfulness of the idyllic village life. This heightened understanding is accompanied by “correspondent passions”: love of God. on his soul. The country is thus a substitute for Eden. the “feeble. “He chid their [i. 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. broken branches are a “sad emblem” of the unrewarding existence of the poor in the countryside. SAQ 4 The personified Philosophic Melancholy exerts “his” influence on man’s imagination. 2. Nor e’er had changed. “His house was known to all the vagrant train” “The long-remembered beggar was his guest” 2.English pre-Romantic poetry Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. Crabbe also gives a reply to those who idealise rural nature: instead of the pleasing “smooth stream” sung in such poetry. in which everything seems to be in decline. By doctrines fashioned to the varying hour” 5. but relieved their pain” 6. a. In the city. the place where “health and virtue” can be found abounding. or seek for power. the “drooping weary” father.
Nature and Divinity form a harmonious whole.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 1. and the beauty of the “sweet flowers” – symbols of life – is replaced by the grim image of the tombstones. His swaddling bands and his father’s arms do not suggest care and protection. The interdiction “Thou shall not” on the door of the chapel suggests repression and limitation. but are symbols of limitation. “walking their rounds” like soldiers guarding a Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 175 . in the state of Experience. The mother “groans” with the pains of delivery. the child identifies himself and the lamb with Jesus. and is itself one more care in the family. In the simple economy of the poem. In the second stanza. “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 his “tender voice” fills all nature with joy. meadow. SAQ 8 Examples: 1. Man. 2. gentle and humble like the lamb itself. 2. The church as an institution belongs to the world of Experience. my father wept” – In the vision of Experience. F. If the child’s play suggests the freedom and pleasure enjoyed in the state of Innocence. the God of Love. it controls man’s relationship with Divinity. struggles in vain. This is also suggested by the gloomy figure of the priests. no longer able – or permitted – to relate to God “naturally” and directly. therefore. a child’s birth is no cause for joy. The pain and sorrow accompanying birth are symbolic anticipations of the suffering. disappointments and frustrations that await man in the world of Experience. T. vales) emphasise the close connection between Innocence and Nature. 7. 5. and. F.” that is. the few elements of the natural setting (stream. the lamb is God’s gift to the child: it is a “delight” to look at and to touch. 4. In a vision of Innocence. The vision of Experience reveals to him the perspective of death: the garden turns out to be a graveyard. T. and the father weeps perhaps because his new baby comes into a world of trouble and cares. It is the intuition of Innocence that dictates the confident answer to the child: the Creator is Jesus. confinement and oppressive authority. the “Lamb of God. against which man. “My mother groaned. T. At the same time. 6. incarnated in a child and having the Lamb as a symbol. The shut gates of the chapel symbolise the estrangement of man from God. 3. T. in Blake’s vision. being thus a source of oppression. Experience brings about inhibition and constraint.” 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. F SAQ 7 The child cannot imagine the Creator of the lovely and tender creature otherwise than “meek and mild. which he has lost. SAQ 9 The “garden” where he “used to play” – the Eden of childhood – is the symbol of the state of Innocence.
1991 (pp. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. 671-684. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. vol. 1991 (pp.English pre-Romantic poetry restricted area. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. vol. Penguin Books Ltd. 652-658. David. 6987) 176 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .. Further reading 1.)..). Ford. 1969 (pp. 692-699) 2. Boris (ed. 84-94) 3. A Critical History of English Literature. Penguin Books Ltd.5 (“From Blake to Byron”). Ford. vol.. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). Boris (ed. Daiches. and conditioning man’s access to the mystery of Divinity on the suppression of his desire.4 (“From Dryden to Johnson”).
Reader READER in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 177 .
cât de asemenea unui înger în puterea sa de înţelegere. ce înseamnă această chintesenţă a ţărânii? Omul nu mă desfată (…). cum să spun. nu ştiu – mi-am pierdut toată voioşia. pentru mine. vedeţi. What a piece of work is man! How noble in Reason! How infinite in faculty! In form. alcătuirile şi mişcările. Ce minunată lucrare e omul. this brave* overhanging* firmament*.1. and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly* frame*. 178 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . – but wherefore* I know not. ability to understand paragon a model of excellence Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi and Dan Duţescu) Hamlet: În ultima vreme – de ce.Reader UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE TEXT 2. look you. forewent.excelent. William Shakespeare. Scene II) Hamlet: (…) I have of late*. shape canopy a large or wide covering (e. in apprehension* how like a god!! The beauty of the world! The paragon* of animals! And yet. – lost all my mirth*. încât acest frumos tărâm. această boltă falnică împodobită cu scântei de aur. of late recently wherefore why. the earth. pildă a vieţuitoarelor. the sky) brave minunat. seems to me a sterile promontory.g. strălucitor overhanging hanging over firmament (archaic. this most excellent canopy*. cât de chibzuit şi de admirabil e în faptele sale. it appears no other thing to me but a foul* and pestilent congregation of vapours. foregone* all custom of exercises. văzduhul. acest mândru firmament ce senalţă deasupra noastră. sufletul îmi este atât de apăsat. to me. literary) the sky fretted decorated foul very bad or unpleasant apprehension understanding. îmi pare un promontoriu sterp. the air. acest preaminunat baldachin. how express and admirable! In action how like an angel. this majestical roof fretted* with golden fire. cât de asemenea unui zeu: frumuseţea lumii. for what reason mirth happiness and laughter foregone to forego. m-am lăsat de toate obişnuitele exerciţii. cât de nobilă îi este inteligenţa. foregone: to give up goodly pleasant or satisfying in appearance frame form. şi totuşi. şi. ce fără de număr îi sunt facultăţile. what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights me not (…). in moving. pământul. Hamlet (Act II. nu-mi pare alta decât un vălmăşag odios şi infect de miasme. într-adevăr.
William Shakespeare. El. TEXT 2. brief* candle*! Life’s but a walking shadow. And then is heard no more. to creep. chinuitor) course fel de mâncare chief most important. iar la ospăţul vieţii Cel mai de seamă fel.” the innocent sleep. scene II) Macbeth: Methought* I heard a voice cry “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep. That struts* and frets* his hour upon the stage. scalda grelei trude şi balsamul Durerii sufleteşti. And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. to be in a state of anxiety and agitation (a se agita. Balm of hurt minds. moartea vieţii fiecărei zile. cel ce desface Fuiorul încâlcit al grijii – somnul: El. it is a tale Told by an idiot. The death of each day’s life. neînsemnat) out (interjection) termină. Signifying nothing. crept to move quiety and slowly (a se târî. trifling (mărunt.2. a înnoda ravelled destrămat. desfăcut sleeve mânecă sore causing grief or sorrow (dureros. and tomorrow. Macbeth (Act V. methought past tense from methinks (archaic): it seems to me to knit up a împleti. William Shakespeare. principal nourisher that which gives (someone) what is needed to grow.Reader TEXT 2. şi-a doua mană A marii firi. sore* labour’s bath. Creeps* in this petty* pace from day to day. trivial. semeţ. and tomorrow. scene V) Macbeth: Tomorrow. Out*. full of sound* and fury. desfirat. ţanţoş. To the last syllable of recorded time. Sleep that knits up* the ravelled* sleeve* of care. Chief* nourisher* in life’s feast* (…). cu un aer important to fret to be distressed.3. Macbeth (Act II. a se frământa) sound zgomot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 179 . a poor player. out. 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. a se furişa) petty inessential. great nature’s second course*. isprăveşte (stinge-te) brief short in duration candle lumânare to strut a umbla/păşi/călca mândru.
William Shakespeare. ticălos) race neam. E o poveste spusă de-un nătâng. sălbatic. 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. nasty (josnic. Though thou didst learn*. and my profit on it Is I know how to curse: the red plague rid you. Cu pas mărunt se-alungă zi de zi. lumânare de o clipă! Ni-e viaţa doar o umbră călătoare. ce-n ceasul lui pe scenă Se grozăveşte şi se tot frământă Şi-n urmă nu mai este auzit. redus. TEXT 2. stupid (necioplit. therefore* wast thou* Deservedly* confined* into this rock Who hadst deserved more than a prison. for that reason wast thou were you deservedly rightly learning teaching vile 180 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . mărginit) shameful and evil. Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee*. savage. Te stinge. tagmă thou didst learn you did learn to abide a răbda. taught thee each hour One thing or other: when thou didst not*. mârşav. I endowed thy purposes With words that made them known: but thy vile* race*. cruel. Spre cel din urmă semn din cartea vremii. but wouldst* gabble* like A thing most brutish*. a bâigui) brutish coarse. The Tempest (Act I.Reader Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Dar mâine şi iar mâine. Took pains to make thee speak. netrebnic. a suporta therefore as a result. Şi fiecare “ieri” a luminat Nebunilor pe-al morţii drum de colb. Caliban: You taught me language. Which any print* of goodness will not take. tot mereu. scene II) Prospero: Abhorred* slave. Un biet actor. Know thine* own meaning. abject. had that in it which good natures Could not abide* to be with.4. Din vorbe-alcătuită şi din zbucium Şi nensemnând nimic.
etc. framework (clădire. dar proasta-ţi fire. când meritai Mai mult decât o temniţă. We are such stuff As dreams are made on. Nici spulber n-au să lase-n urma lor. structure. dar. nepricepând Nici tu ce bălmăjeşti. Te-am surghiunit aici. când tu. temelie) fabric building. şi-n văzduh S-au destrămat cu toţii. rack a floating cloud Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Serbarea noastră s-a sfârşit. fiară. Actorii Ţi-am spus.Reader Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Slugoi scârbavnic. au fost. and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. the great globe itself.5. se vor topi Şi. the gorgeous palaces. ţi-am arătat Al vorbei meşteşug. cu singurul folos Că ştiu acum să-njur – dea ciuma-n tine Şi-n limba ce m-ai învăţat. revels festivitate teatrală pentru curteni foretold to foretell. duhuri. like this insubstantial pageant* faded*. Şi întocmai Ca funigeii viziunii. Plămadă suntem precum cea din care Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 181 . M-am străduit sa te deprind cu graiul. As I foretold* you. turnuri Cu turlele în nori. afară doar De-un dram de bunătate! Mi-a fost milă. Leave not a rack* behind. În stare de orice. Caliban: M-ai învăţat vorbi. all which it inherit. Yea*. The solemn temples. foretold: a anunţa. a spune dinainte melted to melt: a se topi. alcătuire) cloud-capped towers towers whose tops are capped (covered) by clouds yea (archaic. William Shakespeare. shall dissolve And. The cloud-capped towers*. Deşi-ai fost dăscălit. were all spirits and Are melted* into air. avea ceva Ce bunul simţ nu rabdă. consistency. literary) truly. ca-nchipuită scena-aceasta. indeed pageant splendid public show or ceremony faded to fade: to lose brightness. chiar pământul. The Tempest (Act IV. into thin air: And. pe drept. scene I) Prospero: Our revels* are now ended. colour. duşi. Cu tot ce-a moştenit. These our actors. TEXT 2. Scoteai doar mugete. palate mândre. Biserici maiestoase. Te-am învăţat de toate. a se dizolva baseless unfounded (fără bază. toţi. like the baseless* fabric* of this vision.
and make no noise. and some say.Reader Făcute-s visele. Men reckon* what it did and meant. Like gold to aery thinness beat. And grows erect*. Moving of the earth* brings harms and fears. If they be two. no: So let us melt*. Care less eyes. which are one. endure* not yet A breach*. A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning As virtuous men pass mildly* away*. Though greater far. who must. The breath goes now. nor sigh-tempests* move.6. And makes me end. because it doth* remove* Those things which elemented* it. and hearkens* after it. 182 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . to go. Our two souls therefore. they are two so As stiff* twin* compasses are two. and hands to miss. ‘Twere* profanation of our joys To tell the laity* our love. Thy* soul the fixed foot. obliquely run. but doth. Whilst* some of their sad friends do say. lips. Thy firmness makes my circle just*. where I begun. But trepidation of the spheres. but an expansion. Dull* sublunary* lovers’ love (Whose soul is sense*) cannot admit Absence. şi scurta viaţă Împrejmuită ni-e de somn. Such wilt* thou* be to me. as that comes home. Yet when the other far doth roam*. TEXT 2. makes no show To move. And though it in centre sit. Inter-assured of the mind*. It leans*. John Donne. Though I must go. Like the other foot. That our selves know not what it is. No tear-floods. But we by a love so much refined. if the other do. And whisper* to their souls. is innocent.
and proves weak or untrue*. never shall be free. to no end*. softly to whisper a şopti whilst while to melt a-şi înmuia firea. three-personed God*. like an usurped town. precis. overthrown: a nimici. me should defend. blow. burn. for I Except your enthrall* me. a rătăci to lean. a fi supus (the speaker urges his beloved to face the separation calmly and quietly) tear-floods.7. a înfrânge bend your force concentrate. fig. apply your force due cuvenit. 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. but oh. 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. and make me new. Batter My Heart Batter* my heart. a fi atent la (here: to seek to join. to struggle to no end vainly. overthrew. shine. exact Text 2. and stand. to undergo breach break. or break that knot again. leant a se apleca. Nor ever chaste. a subjuga to ravish a răpi. to another due*. gladly betrothed unto logodit cu to untie a dezlega. a presupune dull not intense sublunary: beneath the moon. Reason your viceroy* in me. sigh-tempests şuvoaie/potop de lacrimi. a ajunge în poziţie verticală wilt will thou you just corect. 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. o’erthrow me*. to long for) to grow erect a se îndrepta. you As yet* but knock. therefore subject to change whose soul is sense in which physical presence is essential doth does to remove to take away. a lua cu sila. untie*. imprison me. hotărât twin îngemănat thy your to roam a hoinări. Divorce me. datorat to labour to work hard. breathe. Yet dearly I love you. Labour* to admit you. But am betrothed* unto your enemy. and would be loved fain*. and bend Your force*. mirean) moving of the earth earthquake to reckon a gândi.Reader pass away to die mildly gently. a silui Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 183 . I. except you ravish* me. ferm. to break. 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.: inflexibil. rupture stiff rigid. John Donne. a elibera to enthrall a supune. a înrobi. Take me to you. That I may* rise. But is captived. a se înclina to hearken a asculta. for.
in thy marble vault*. And while thy willing* soul transpires At every pore with instant fires*. My vegetable* love should grow Vaster than empires and more slow. 184 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Rather at once our devour Than languish* in his slow-chapt power*. Thus. if you please. We would sit down. Two hundred to adore each breast. And now. Thy beauty shall no more be found. shall sound My echoing song. and pass our long love’s day. you deserve this state*. And you should. though we cannot make our sun Stand still. To His Coy Mistress Had we but* world enough.8. Lady. Now let us sport* while we may. do there embrace. I think. Let us roll all our strength and all Our sweetness up into one ball. Nor would I love at lower rate. This coyness*. then worms shall try That long-preserved virginity. But at my back I always hear Time’s winged* chariot* hurrying near. and time. And your quaint* honor turn to dust. like amorous birds of prey. An age at least to every part. Thou* by the Indian Ganges’ side Shouldst* rubies* find. Now therefore. were no crime. But thirty thousand to the rest. And yonder* all before us lie Deserts of vast eternity. And into ashes all my lust*: The grave*’s a fine and private place. and on thy* forehead gaze. And tear* our pleasure with rough strife* Thorough* the iron gates of life.Reader TEXT 2. yet we will make him run. For. Andrew Marvell. And the last age should show your heart. But none. while the youthful* hue* Sits on thy skin like morning dew*. I would Love you ten years before the Flood*. I by the tide Of Humber* would complain. An hundred years should go to praise Thine* eyes. Nor. and think which way To talk. refuse Till the conversion of the Jews*. Lady.
: swift. tentă dew rouă willing favourably disposed. thy your state ceremonial treatment winged having wings. torn) a smulge. a lâncezi. in spite of her coyness. fig. a lua cu de-a sila strife violent struggle thorough through Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 185 . sfială.Reader had we but… if only we had coyness timiditate. 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. tineresc hue culoare. indicates her “willing soul” to sport a petrece. a se veseli to languish a se ofili. fast chariot ceremonial carriage (car) yonder (poetic) over there vault burial chamber (cavou) quaint odd. nuanţă. which. a se plictisi slow-chapt power the power of its slowly devouring jaws to tear (tore. patimă) grave mormânt. inappropriate (nefiresc) ashes cenuşă lust strong sexual desire (dorinţă. peculiar. groapă youthful de tinereţe. inclined instant fires the flush in her face.
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. John Milton. 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.” 186 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . That some more timely*-happy* spirits endueth*. Perhaps my semblance* might deceive* the truth. though my soul more bent* To serve therewith* my maker. to prevent That murmur*. speed. It shall be still* in strictest measure even To that same lot*.1. and present My true account. insignificant ever eternity task-master the one who imposes tasks. light denied*?” I fondly* ask. And inward ripeness* doth* much less appear. Toward which time leads me.Reader UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON TEXT 3. to endue: a înzestra (Inward ripeness. however mean* or high. lucky endueth endues. who best Bear his mild yoke*. in this dark world and wide. Ere* half my days. obscure. John Milton. Sonnet XVII When I consider how my light* is spent*. Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year*! My hasting days fly on with full career*. lest he. or soon or slow. if I have grace to use it so. returning. boboc showeth shows (My late spring shows no bud or blossom) semblance outward appearance to deceive to mislead (a înşela) manhood bărbăţie. And that one talent* which is death to hide Lodged with me useless*. a strict overseer TEXT 3. appears [in me] much less – i. rush bud mugur. opportune happy fortunate. vârstă adultă ripeness maturitate doth does timely occuring atjust the right moment.e to a lesser extent) still always lot fortune. they serve him best. and the will of heaven. the subtle* thief of youth. chide*. As ever* in my great task-master's* eye. '”Doth God exact* day-labour. That I to manhood* am arrived so near. Yet be it less or more. But my late spring no bud* or blossom showeth*. All is. but Patience. which endues some more timely-happy spirits. destiny mean humble. soon replies: “God doth not need Either man's work or his own gifts.2. Sonnet VII How soon hath* time.
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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Why. was this forbid*? Why but to awe? Why but to keep ye low* and ignorant. a se încumeta forbid forbidden low humble. by venturing* higher than my lot. do not believe Those rigid threats of death. or this tree Impart against his will. that Man may not become As they. your eyes. participating* godlike* food? The Gods are first. and freely taste. What can your knowledge hurt him. ye you (pl. then. Them nothing. for this fair* Earth I see. reach* then. din el/ea (eat from the Tree of Knowledge) dim having weak or indistinct vision participating sharing godlike divine to proceed (from) to originate. 4. that seem so clear Yet are but dim*.8. yet both live And life more perfect have attained than Fate Meant me. How should ye? by the fruit? it gives you life To knowledge. Queen of the Universe. as they know. and ye shall be like Gods. Warmed by the Sun. 3. John Milton.) venturing to venture: a îndrăzni. shall perfectly be then Opened and cleared. modest thereof din ace(a)sta. that all from them proceeds*. a apuca Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 191 . producing every kind. Me who have touched and tasted. by the Threatener? look on me. Goddess humane. if all be his? Or is it envy? and can envy dwell In heavenly breasts? These. Knowing both good and evil. in the day Ye eat thereof*. ye* shall not die. and that advantage use On our belief. Shall that be shut to Man which to the beast Is open? 2. And what are Gods. Paradise Lost (Book IX) 1. His worshippers? He knows that. to emerge fair beautiful to import a însemna to reach a întinde mâna.Reader TEXT 3. these and many more Causes import* your need of this fair fruit. I question it.
The world was all before them. They. all the eastern side beheld* Of Paradise. care arde natural firesc 192 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . beheld (archaic. Through Eden took their solitary way. where to choose Their place of rest. beheld to behold. so late* their happy seat*. sălaş flaming brand sabia de foc/flăcări thronged (with dreadful faces) plină (de chipuri de temut) fiery în flăcări. Waved over by that flaming brand*. the gate With dreadful faces thronged* and fiery* arms: Some natural* tears they dropped. hand in hand. with wandering steps and slow. Paradise Lost (Book XII) They. and Providence their guide. but wiped them soon. John Milton.Reader TEXT 3. literary): to look at so late până nu demult seat locaş.9. looking back.
abătut closet a small private room inviolate in which nobody intrudes sole only. like my Lady Faddler and Sir Francis. wherever I am. William Congreve. nor kiss before folks*. Millamant: Trifles* – as liberty to pay and receive visits* to and from whom I please. dine in my dressing room when I’m out of humour*. the only oneto presume to dare (a îndrăzni) to ask leave to ask permission Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 193 . because they are your acquaintance. politicos a great while a long time hitherto until this time. The Way of the World Millamant: (…) Good Mirabell. 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. but let us be very strange* and well bred*. To have my closet* inviolate*. without interrogatories or wry faces* on your part. as if we were proud of one another the first week. so far trifle fleac. or to be intimate with fools. and then never be seen there together again. tender folks people chariot trăsură to provoke eyes and whispers to attract attention and provoke gossip (bârfă) strange distant. because they may be your relations*.Reader UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE TEXT 4. And lastly. to have no obligation upon me to converse with wits* that I don’t like. Come to dinner when I please. to write and receive letters. to wear what I please. and as well bred as if we were not married at all. nor go to Hyde Park together the first Sunday in a new chariot*.1. Mirabell: Have you any more conditions to offer? Hitherto* your demands are pretty reasonable. and choose conversation with regard only to my own taste. nor go to a play together. Let us never visit together. you shall always knock at the door before you come in. without giving a reason. don’t let us be familiar or fond*. to be sole* empress of my tea table. manierat. (…) fond affectionate. reserved well-bred binecrescut. let us be as strange as if we had been married a great while*. which you must never presume* to approach without first asking leave*. and ashamed of one another ever after. to provoke eyes and whispers*.
In the writings of other poets a character is too often an individual: in those of Shakespeare it is commonly a species. by the peculiarities* of studies or professions.Reader TEXT 4. pungaş. the poet that holds up to his readers a faithful mirror of manners and of life. or by the accidents of transient* fashions or temporary opinions: they are the genuine progeny* of common humanity. a blockhead*. above all writers. The Preface to Shakespeare Nothing can please many. variabil fanciful capricios. escroc. transitory (trecător) progeny urmaşi. and the fineness* of a stroke* that separates the head from the body. and therefore few only can judge how nearly* they are copied. nemernic opprobrious insulting betwixt between slovenly neglijent butchering căsăpire. Samuel Johnson. The irregular* combinations of fanciful* invention may delight awhile* by that novelty of which the common satiety* of life sends us all in quest. perfecţiune stroke lovitură TEXT 4. and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth. the poet of nature. măcelărire fineness eleganţă. His characters are not modified by the customs of particular places. descendenţi to supply a oferi. and please long. dobitoc. manners moravuri nearly faithfully. and that wittily*! But how hard to make a man appear a fool. A Discourse Concerning the Original and Progress of Satire How easy is it to call rogue* and villain*. 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. cap sec knave escroc. Shakespeare is. unpractised by the rest of the world. a furniza 194 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . ticălos. potlogar villain nemernic. John Dryden. a livra. rogue pungaş. such as the world will always supply* and observation will always find. and leaves it standing in its place. successfully irregular neuniform. or a knave* without using any of those opprobrious* terms! (…) There is (…) a vast difference betwixt* the slovenly* butchering* of a man. which can operate but* upon small numbers. but just representations of general nature.3. secătură. but the pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted. fantezist awhile for a short period satiety the state of being too much filled or satisfied peculiarity particularitate but only transient temporary. Particular manners* may be known to few.2. at least above all modern writers. lichea wittily in a witty manner (cu mult spirit) blockhead nătâng.
entities. let slip* an opportunity put into his hands that would have made him absolute master of the lives. He professed both to abominate* and despise all mystery*. and almost adored by his subjects. wherein* they must be allowed to excel. Gulliver’s Travels (Book II. great wisdom. Jonathan Swift. to the improvement of agriculture and all mechanical arts*. either in a prince or a minister. For I remember very well. He confined* the knowledge of governing within very narrow bounds*: to common sense and reason. 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. so that among us would be little esteemed. where an enemy or some rival nation were not in case. and mathematics. endued* with admirable talents for government. to justice and lenity*. in a discourse one day with the King. (…) I take* this defect among them to have risen from their ignorance. as the more acute wits* of Europe have done. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 195 . refinement and intrigue. of strong parts. yet he would rather lose half his kingdom than be privy* to such a secret (…). should from a nice*. He could not tell what I meant by secrets of state. I could never drive* the least conception into their heads. chapter VII) The King was struck with horror* at the description I had given of those terrible engines* and the proposal I had made. And as to ideas. to the speedy* determination* of civil and criminal causes. and transcendentals*. when I happened to say there were several thousand books among us written upon the art of government. it gave him (directly contrary to my intention) a very mean opinion* of our understandings. 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.Reader TEXT 4. they not having hitherto reduced politics into a science.4. the liberties. love. and profound learning. unnecessary scruple. The learning of this people is very defective. and the fortunes of his people. he protested* that although few things delighted him so much as new discoveries in art or in nature. with some other obvious topics* which are not worth considering. A strange effect of narrow principles and short views*! that a prince possessed of every quality which procures veneration. He was amazed how so impotent and grovelling* an insect as I (these were his expressions) could entertain* such inhuman ideas. But the last of these is wholly applied to what may be useful in life. and esteem. consisting only in morality. whereof* in Europe we can have no conception. poetry. abstractions. history.
He said the Yahoos were known to hate one another more than they did any different species of animals. from the representation I had given him of our lives. a încredinţa to be privy to a fi făcut părtaş la. speed. Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV. greu de mulţumit) whereof of which to let slip (an opportunity) a lăsa să-i scape. încheiere (a unei cauze juridice) topic temă. 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. boundary (hotar) lenity tolerance (îngăduinţă) speedy quick. Jonathan Swift. keeps always near the 196 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . For he only meant to observe what parity* there was in our natures. manufactures*. if (said he) you throw among five Yahoos as much food as would be sufficient for fifty. they will dig with their claws for whole days to get them out. (…) That.g. a i se încredinţa (e. so. and hide them by heaps* in their kennels*. This favorite is hated by the whole herd. for fear their comrades should find out their treasure. and mischievous* in disposition. but not in themselves.Reader struck with horror cuprins de groază engines maşini (piese de artilerie) grovelling to grovel: to crawl. as I had described them. a fi iniţiat în. excessively particular about details (pretenţios. 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. a scăpa din mână (o ocazie) I take I think. as in fear or humility (a se târî) to entertain (an idea) a nutri (o idee) to protest a declara. to restrict bound limit. than any of the rest. as sometimes happens. whose employment was to lick* his masters feet and posteriors. and carry them away. which all could see in the rest. un secret) short views concepţii înguste endued înzestrat nice fastidious. my master confessed he could find little or no resemblance between the Yahoos of that country and those in ours. but still looking round with great caution. and that the dissensions of those brutes in his country were owing to the same cause with ours. Ch. and our actions. to dislike intensely mystery urzeli tainice to confine to limit. That this leader had usually a favorite as like himself as he could get. (…) As to learning. for which he was known and then rewarded with a piece of ass’s flesh*. and drive the female Yahoos to his kennel. the shortness of my claws*. and therefore* to protect himself. in some fields of his country. our manners. fall together by ears*. and when part of these stones are fixed in the earth. a asigura. government.5. they will instead of eating peaceably. (…) But he now found he had been mistaken. each single one impatient* to have all to itself. I suppose acute wits spirite luminate (acute: pătrunzător. and the like. except where it was to my real disadvantage in point of* strength. whereof the Yahoos are violently fond*. driven) an idea into one’s head a băga în cap. a face să priceapă TEXT 4. and some other particulars* where Nature had no part*. arts. he found as near a resemblance in the disposition* of our minds. there are certain shining stones of several colors. and activity. perspicace) mean opinion părere nefavorabilă to abominate to detest. For. without delay determination rezolvare. VII) He observed that I agreed* in every feature of my body with other Yahoos. and the reason usually assigned* was the odiousness* of their own shapes.
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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which none of these could do. (fell.Reader TEXT 5. It happened after some time. and said to myself that certainly they might be made to burn whole if they would burn broken. in a word how. I found a broken piece of one of my earthenware vessels* in the fire burned as hard as a stone. This set me to studying how to order* my fire. 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.2. 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. and any things my hand turned to*. to pity a căina awkward incomod. pitchers*. how many of them fell in*. a prelucra above more than earthen de lut. But all this would not answer my end*. dificil paste cocă misshapen diform fell in to fall. (fell. such as the potters* burn in. yet I made several smaller things with better success – such as little round pots. but I placed three large pipkins and two or three pots in a pile. a se desprinde clay lut. which it did admirably well. anevoios. a frământa. to tell how many awkward* ways I took to raise this paste*. when I went to put it out* after I had done with it. though I had some lead to do it with. or rather laugh at me. to dig* it. I was agreeably surprised to see it. misshapen*. Robinson Crusoe It would make the reader pity* me. making a pretty large fire for cooking my meat. or glazing* them with lead*. I had no notion of a kiln*. a cădea fell out to fall. being set out too hastily*. one upon another. (…) Though I miscarried* so much in my design* for large pots*. When I saw them clear red. how many cracked* by the over-violent heat of the sun. I let them stand in that heat about five or six hours(…). with a great heap of embers* under them. 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*. so as to make it burn me some pots. to bring it home and work it. Daniel Defoe. fallen) in: a se prăbuşi. and how many fell in pieces with only removing* as well before as after they were dried. and placed my firewood* all round it. vas to miscarry a da greş design intenţie pot vas. and how many fell out*. the clay* not being stiff* enough to bear its own weight*. what odd. and red as a tile*. which was to get an earthen pot to hold what was liquid. ugly things I made. 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. after having laboured hard to find the clay. fallen) out: a se desface. de pământ jar oală. and pipkins*. oală Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 201 . and bear* the fire. I could not make above* two large earthen* ugly things – I cannot call them jars* – in about two months’ labour. 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 (…). flat dishes*. and. and observed that they did not crack at all*. dug a săpa to temper a amesteca.. and the heat of the sun baked* them strangely hard*. to temper* it.
3. than the dry*. plin de viaţă) height culme. arătos a thing of so mean a nature un lucru atât de mărunt TEXT 5. chinuri womb pântece. narrative. dubious uncertain. the womb of fate: incertitudinea sorţii dry sec. scop. durere. I beseech* you. I must own* to you. and accounts for his rigorous* behaviour to me. in which he confesses his affection for her. and of so much honour too. is not a voluntary thing – Love. like a thief. punct culminant. and before I knew what was the matter. Samuel Richardson. to my grief*. O my unguarded* youth. but now. în întregime at all deloc handsome frumos.4.Reader dish blid. apogeu distress nefericire. can be. has greatly affected me. and so it is: but love. nay*.] This letter. She seems taken by surprise by her own feelings. […] O my dear parents. doubtful lively vivid (însufleţit. Much more lively* and affecting must be the style of those who write in the height* of a present distress*. so much affection. […] Forgive. farfurie pitcher ulcior ulcea pipkin gavanos to turn to a se apuca de lucru. and tender years*. before. a ţine la to put out (the fire) a stinge (focul) earthenware vessels vase de lut tile ţiglă. however. intenţie to bear (bore. But to be sure*. forgive me! but I found. 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. I am quite overcome*. I imagine. a depăşi) TEXT 5. to find him capable of so much openness. but it has crept*. the mind tortured by the pangs* of uncertainty (the events then hidden in the womb* of fate). did I say! […] I know not how it came. I had no reason to expect. upon me. will ye* not in some 202 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . that my heart was too partial* in his favour. unanimated style of a person relating difficulties and dangers surmounted*. a se pune pe lucru to bake a coace strangely hard neobişnuit de tare end ţel. B_. This was a good fortune. crept. Pamela [Pamela receives a letter from Mr. neutru to surmount to overcome (a birui. a învinge. that I shall never be able to think of any body in the world but him! Presumption*! you will say. but with what may be called instantaneous descriptions and reflections (…). forgive your poor daughter! How am I grieved* to find this trial so severe* upon me. my dear father. it looked like love. Samuel Richardson. born) a rezista. nenorocire pangs mâhnire. 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. For here plainly* does he confess his great value for me. nor when it began. when I expected some new plot*.
for there it is never properly introduced. necaz wert were inconsiderately (în mod) nesocotit.my heart] fully deserve to suffer summons chemare.Reader measure excuse me? I never before knew. in this.5.e. containing a much larger circle of incidents. Henry Fielding. mâhnire partial to având o slăbiciune pentru nay (literary) ba mai mult. intrigă plainly în mod deschis. differing from comedy. I must either not show you this confession of my weakness.) couldst thou could you serve how couldst thou serve me thus? Cum ai putut să te porţi astfel? notice to give notice: a preveni. în mod clar rigorous aspru. and consequently. or tear* it out of my writing. burlesque itself may be sometimes admitted. torn) out a smulge. a copleşi to be sure cu siguranţă to own a mărturisi presumption cutezanţă. and resignation to the Divine Will. by preserving the ludicrous* instead of the sublime. a se furişa to beseech (besought) a ruga cu stăruinţă. before summons* came. as the serious epic from tragedy: its action being more extended and comprehensive*. and when likewise* thou hadst* so well maintained thy post* against the most violent and avowed*. who had used me so hardly. It differs from the serious romance in its fable* and action. a înştiinţa mischief neajuns. în consecinţă to tear (tore. a comic romance* is a comic epic poem* in prose. in its sentiments and diction*. mâhnit severe trial încercare grea unguarded imprudent tender years vârstă fragedă ye you (pl. for giving up so weakly. avertizare likewise de asemenea hadst (you) had thou hadst so well maintained thy post you put up resistance successfully avowed făţiş therefore aşadar. when I get home. 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.] plot uneltire. perfidious traitor*! deservest* thou to smart. without ever consulting thy poor mistress* in the least*! But thy punishment will be the first and the greatest: and well. whereas the grave romance sets the highest* before us: lastly. and to one too. only dangerous attacks! After all. Yet. însemnare TEXT 5. îndrăzneală crept to creep (crept): a se strecura. But though we have sometimes admitted this in our diction. we have carefully excluded it from our sentiments and characters. Joseph Andrews (Preface) Now. I hope. I could have no notion of what it was to be so affected! But prayer. nechibzuit thyself yourself thy poor mistress biata ta stăpână (not) in the least câtuşi de puţin. that as in the one these are grave and solemn. and therefore*. thy whole self. întristat. and the benefits of your good lesson and examples. O my treacherous*. so in the other they are light* and ridiculous: it differs in its characters by introducing persons of inferior rank.) treacherous trădător (adj. a rupe memorandum notă. unless* in writings of the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 203 . nicidecum traitor trădător (noun) deservest well …deservest thou to smart: you [i. mai mult chiar to overcome a depăşi. of inferior manners. a implora grieved amărât. to consider of this. of which many instances will occur in these works […]. In the diction. I think. and introducing a greater variety of characters. sever grief durere. will enable me to get over this heavy trial. as I thought. [Memorandum*.
[…] Let us examine the works of a comic history painter.Reader burlesque kind. and consequently more ridiculous. arises from the surprising absurdity. […] Now. which that of the hypocrite hath. that affectation doth* not imply an absolute negation of those qualities which are affected. whereas in the Caricatura we allow all licence* – its aim is to exhibit monsters. is more surprising. It may be likewise noted. which this is not intended to be. as in appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest*. the affectation of liberality* in a vain* man differs visibly from the same affectation in the avaricious. Indeed. which always strikes* the reader with surprise and pleasure. as it hath not that violent repugnancy* of nature to struggle with. with those performances which the Italians call Caricatura. And though these two causes are often confounded (for there is some difficulty in distinguishing them). than when from vanity. and the Ridiculous to describe than paint. for as the latter is ever* the exhibition* of what is monstrous and unnatural. the affectation which arises from vanity is nearer to truth than the other. Burlesque is in writing. affectation proceeds from one of these two causes. to the degree he would be thought to have it. in order to purchase* applause. when it proceeds from hypocrisy. not men. Now. if we examine it. 204 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . And here I shall observe. than to find him a little deficient in the quality he desires the reputation of. […] The only source of the true Ridiculous (as it appears to me) is affectation. From the discovery of this affectation arises the Ridiculous. as in the former the painter seems to have the advantage. yet when it comes from vanity only. it be nearly allied to deceit*. therefore. though. what Caricatura is in painting. and. or hath not the virtue he affects. vanity or hypocrisy: for as vanity puts us on affecting false characters*. so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure*. that. so they are as clearly distinct in their operations: for indeed. no two species of writing can differ more widely than the comic and the burlesque. in so much that a judicious eye instantly rejects anything outré*. or e converso*. for the Monstrous is much easier to paint than describe. who is the very reverse of what he would seem to be. any liberty which the painter hath* taken with the features of that alma mater*. from the just* imitation of which will flow all the pleasure we can this way convey to a sensible* reader. and in the same manner the comic writer and painter correlate to each other. and where our delight. yet. and all distortions and exaggerations whatever are within its proper province*. for to discover any one to be the exact reverse of what he affects. so it is in the latter infinitely on the side of the writer. as they proceed* from very different motives. for though the vain man is not what he would appear. it partakes* of the nature of ostentation: for instance. so in the former we should ever confine* ourselves strictly to nature. yet it sits less awkwardly* on him than on the avaricious man. by concealing* our vices under an appearance of their opposite virtues. where we shall find the true excellence of the former to consist in the exactest copying of nature. and that in a higher and stronger degree when the affectation arises from hypocrisy.
Reader […] Much less are natural imperfections the objects of derision. tend* only to raise our mirth*. But for not being what they would be thought*. dărnicie) vain vanitos awkwardly stângaci. smaller faults. comic romance roman comic comic epic poem poem eroicomic comprehensive cuprinzător fable subiect. but affectation appears to me the only true source of the Ridiculous. which at first moved our compassion. 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. face parte din liberality generosity (mărinimie. cu bun simţ) outré (French) exaggerated hath has alma mater (Latin) the nourishing mother.: the primary source licence liberty province domeniu. of our pity. but when ugliness aims at the applause* of beauty. 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. 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. exact sensible endowed with common sense (cu judecată. cu stângăcie. contradiction doth does deceit înşelătorie it partakes of se înrudeşte cu. 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. it is then that these unfortunate circumstances. […] Great vices are the proper objects of our detestation. The poet carries this very far: None are for being what they are in fault.” Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 205 . or lameness* endeavours to display* agility. / Ci de-a nu fi ceea ce vrea să pară. fig. sferă affecting false characters pretending to be in a way that one is not.
and that I fly off* from what I am about. which were thought to be at variance* with each other. yet I constantly take care to order affairs so. dirty planet of ours. but because it is an excellence seldom* looked for. my work is digressive. I take to be made up of the shreds* and clippings* of the rest. […] The machinery* of my work is of a species by itself. Chapter XXII) For in this long digression which I was accidentally led into. Chapter V) On the fifth day of November. Gentleman. two contrary motions are introduced into it. the merit of which has all along. yet with all the good temper* in the world I affirm it of her that in every stage of my life. – not but the planet is well enough*. Laurence Sterne. povară signal însemnat. Tristram Shandy (Vol. or expected indeed. and though I will not wrong her by saying she has ever made me feel the weight* of any great or signal* evil.Reader TEXT 5. 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. abject vile ticălos with reverence be it spoken fie spus cu tot respectul shreds zdrenţe clippings resturi. Tristram Shandy (Vol I. lipsit de cordialitate/amabilitate to pelt a bombarda. and at every turn* and corner where she could get* fairly at me.6. In a word. with reverence be it spoken*. or could any how contrive* to be called up to public charges* and employments* of dignity or power – but that is not my case […].7. in a digression. the ungracious* Duchess has pelted* me with a set of as pitiful* misadventures* and cross* accidents as ever small HERO sustained. a izbuti. I fear. brought forth born scurvy păcătos. that my main business does not stand still in my absence. 1718 […] was I Tristram Shandy. remarcabil good temper voie bună turn cotitură to get at (somebody) to irritate. been overlooked* by my reader. as you observe. not for want of penetration* in him. as far and as often too as any writer in Great-Britain.I. and it is progressive too. and reconciled. – and at the same time. provided a man could be born in it to a great title* or to a great estate*. a asalta pitiful jalnic misadventure nenorocire cross potrivnic. which. răspundere publică employment slujbă sport jucărie weight greutate. 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. […] 206 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . brought forth* into this scurvy* and disastrous world of ours. on my conscience. as in my all digressions (one only excepted) there is a master-stroke* of digressive skill. to annoy ungracious răutăcios. nefericit TEXT 5. or in any of the planets […] than in this vile*. – and it is this: That though my digressions are all fair*. Laurence Sterne. I wish I had been born in the Moon. a reuşi public charges însărcinare.
master-stroke mişcare măiestrită skill meşteşug to overlook a-i scăpa. you see. I have constructed the main work and the adventitious* parts of it with such intersections. so as to be not only for the advantage of the reader.Reader Digressions. – and. and forbids the appetite to fail. bids* All hail*. whose distress*. bidden) a ura all hail trăiască!. what’s more. – take them out of this book for instance. sadea to fly off a-şi lua zborul machinery mecanism at variance potrivnic. from that moment. if it pleases the fountain of health to bless me so long with life and good spirits*. restore them to the writer. is truly pitiable*: For. has been kept agoing. a sta pe loc vile work ticăloasă treabă adventitious întâmplător to involve a încurca. cum trebuie. All the dexterity* is in the good cookery* and management of them. one wheel within another*. and if he goes on with his main work. in general. artă culinară distress stare jalnică pitiable vrednic de milă to stand stock-still a încremeni. you might as well take the book along with them. it shall be kept a-going these forty years. în contradicţie to reign a domni to step forth a păşi bridegroom mire to bid (bade. from the beginning of this. slavă! dexterity îndemânare cookery gătit. the soul of reading. a trece cu vederea for want of penetration din pricina lipsei de pătrundere/înţelegere seldom arareori fair fără cusur. This is vile work*. brings in variety. incontestably. For which reason. if he begins a digression. are the sunshine. and have so complicated and involved* the digressive and progressive movements. he steps forth* like a bridegroom*. in this matter. his whole work stands stock-still*. a încâlci one wheel within another cu rotiţele îmbucându-se una întralta good spirits voie bună Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 207 . then there is an end of his digression. – one cold eternal winter would reign* in every page of it. I observe. but also of the author. that the whole machine. – they are the life.
By doctrines fashioned* to the varying hour. but his sad emblem now. Unpracticed he to fawn*.1. Go.2.Reader UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY TEXT 6. nor wished to change his place. fiind considerat bogat pound liră remote far away. Far other aims his heart had learned to prize*. The Deserted Village A man he was. Go! if the peaceful cot* your praises share. And passing rich* with forty pounds* a year. looks up to see The bare arms* broken from the withering* tree On which. Or hers. that offspring* round their feeble* fire. a linguşi) fashioned potrivit. Nor e’er* had changed. Remote* from towns he ran his godly* race. to all the country dear. the matron* pale. a aprecia the wretched cei sărmani/nenorociţi vagrant vagabond. look within. Whom the smooth* stream and smoother sonnet please. More skilled to raise the wretched* than to rise. Who. Then his first joy. croit to prize a preţui. devout (evlavios. he climbed the loftiest bough*. Whose beard descending swept his aged breast. George Crabbe. cortegiu şir chid to chide. cerşetor train alai. He chid* their wanderings*. Oliver Goldsmith. whose age Can with no cares except his own engage. His house was known to all the vagrant* train*. 208 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a mângâia) TEXT 6. cucernic) e’er ever to fawn to seek attention and admiration by flattering (a se ploconi. modelat. to scold (a dojeni. a boy. chid: to rebuke. whose trembling hand Turns on the wretched* hearth* the expiring* brand*! (…) (…) yonder* see that hoary swain*. distant godly pious. hoinar. Or theirs. but relieved* their pain: The long-remembered beggar was his guest. The Village Ye* gentle* souls who dream of rural ease*. or seek for power. a mustra) wandering rătăcire to relieve to bring alleviation (a uşura. and ask if peace be there. passing rich trecând drept bogat. propped* on that rude* staff*. a alina. If peace be his – that drooping* weary* sire*.
through the breast Infuses every tenderness. ales. Inflames imagination. to excite swelling expanding rapture ecstasy.3. What wonder then that health and virtue. dumbravă Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 209 . disdain (dispreţ) tyrant pride the arrogance of arbitrary or unjust power the social offspring of the heart the community. The love of Nature. and as high: Devotion. and man made the town. William Cowper. urmaş feeble plăpând. should most abound And least be threatened in the fields and groves*? draught înghiţitură.Reader ye you (pl. to stimulate. and. the sigh for suffering worth* Lost in obscurity. With all the social offspring of the heart*. ecstatic joy unconfined unlimited chief most important suffering worth men of merit and virtue who suffer scorn contempt. and far Beyond dim earth exalts* the swelling* thought. sprijinit. (…) As fast the correspondent passions rise. rezemat rude rudimentary. cămin expiring dying (care se stinge) brand tăciune yonder (poetic) there hoary swain săteanul cărunt/nins/venerabil propped proptit. The Task (1785) God made the country. 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. Of human race. liniştit cot căsuţă drooping aplecat. (…) The sympathies of love and friendship dear. nenorocit hearth vatră. whom the heart feels as a family TEXT 6. coarse. to elevate.4. lacking adornments staff toiag bare arms ramurile/crengile desfrunzite withering decaying. generos ease tihnă. linişte. slab matron mamă de familie wretched biet. losing vitality (care se usucă) loftiest bough ramura cea mai înaltă TEXT 6. unconfined*. James Thomson. the large ambitious wish To make them blest. chief*. simple.) gentle nobil. gifts That can alone make sweet the bitter draught* That life holds to all. the noble scorn* Of tyrant pride*. pace smooth calm. sorbitură grove crâng. jalnic. încovoiat weary exhausted (istovit) sire (poetic) tată. raised To rapture* and divine astonishment. părinte offspring vlăstar. o’er over to exalt to raise. As varied.
By the stream and o’er* the mead*. Little Lamb. supus) mild gentle. Softest clothing. Struggling in my father’s hands. a ţâşni. We are called by his name. bound: a lega strâns. a fi supărat/îmbufnat 210 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Infant Sorrow (from Songs of Experience) My mother groaned*. a închide weary tired. not violent (blajin. luncă) wooly made of or feeling like wool (lânos) to rejoice to feel or show great joy thy your meek very quiet. piping* loud. a suspina wept to weep (wept): a plânge leapt to leap. gentle and uncomplaining (blând. For he calls himself a Lamb: He is meek*. îngăduitor) TEXT 6. exhausted to sulk to be silent and resentful a se bosumfla. wooly* bright. leapt: a sări. my father wept*. te-a poftit să te hrăneşti o’er over mead meadow (pajişte. Little Lamb. who made thee who made you dost thou know do you know bid thee feed ţi-a oferit hrană. and he is mild*. Little Lamb.Reader TEXT 6. God bless thee. William Blake. cuminte. Like a fiend* hid* in a cloud. I’ll tell thee: He is called by thy* name. and bid thee feed*. He became a little child: I a child and thou a lamb.5. Helpless. Bound* and weary*. Into the dangerous world I leapt*. Gave thee such a tender voice. who made thee? Dost thou know who made thee? Little Lamb. God bless thee. a înlănţui. Gave thee clothing of delight. I thought best To sulk* upon my mother’s breast. Striving against my swaddling bands*.The Lamb (from Songs of Innocence) Little Lamb who made thee*? Dost thou know* who made thee? Gave thee life. I’ll tell thee. William Blake. to groan a geme. naked. 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.6. Making all the vales rejoice*! Little Lamb.
And Priests in black gowns* were walking their rounds*. And we cannot go to sleep. to disappear to leap (leaped/leapt) a sări. bound: to tie briar a wild bush with branches that have thorns (măceş. Besides. And saw what I never had seen: A Chapel was built in the midst*. And the hills are all covered with sheep. iarbă neagră) TEXT 6. Come. green pajişte verde at rest calm. And every thing else is still.” “No. come leave off play. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Innocence) When the voices of children are heard on the green*. the sun is gone down. midst middle ‘Thou shalt not’ ‘You shall not’ (the interdictory formula beginning the ten commandments in the Bible) writ written bore to bear. And tomb-stones* where flowers should be. a ţopăi to echo a răsuna Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 211 . And laughing is heard on the hill. And then go home to bed.Reader TEXT 6. bore. for it is yet day. William Blake. and let us away* Till the morning appears in the skies. robă walking their rounds făcându-şi rondul binding to bind. “Then come home my children. So I turned to the Garden of Love. And ‘Thou shalt not’* writ* over the door.” The little ones leaped* and shouted and laughed And all the hills echoed*. borne: to give birth to grave mormânt tomb-stone piatră funerară gown mantie. And binding* with briars* my joys and desires. And I saw it was filled with graves*. a sălta. That so many sweet flowers bore*. The Garden of Love (from Songs of Experience) I went to the Garden of Love. And the gates of the Chapel were shut. William Blake. at ease dew rouă let us away să megrem to fade away to die. My heart is at rest* within my breast.8. well.” “Well. And the dews* of night arise. no. in the sky the little birds fly. go and play till the light fades away*. Where I used to play on the green. tranquil.7. let us play.
212 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Joe. Dick.9. Were all of them locked up in coffins* of black. And wash in a river. Though the morning was cold. And he opened the coffins and set them all free. and shine in the Sun. Tom. There’s little Tom Dacre. weep. weep. Your spring and your day are wasted* in play. my children. who cried when his head That curled* like a lamb’s back. So if all do their duty. They rise upon clouds. and that very night. And by* came an Angel who had a bright key. freamăt dale vale. vâlcea my face turns green as in “green with envy” to waste a pierde. all their bags left behind.” And so he was quiet. Tom was happy and warm. whisperings şoapte. he had such a sight*!– That thousands of sweepers. As Tom was a-sleeping. The days of my youth rise fresh in my mind. never mind it. William Blake. And got with our bags and our brushes to work. Then naked and white. if he'd be a good boy. weep!” So your chimneys I sweep. and sport* in the wind. and in soot* I sleep. Ned and Jack. And the dews of night arise. the sun is gone down. a irosi TEXT 6. William Blake. You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair. for when your head's bare. they run. The Chimney Sweeper* (from Songs of Innocence) When my mother died I was very young. And my father sold* me while yet my tongue Could scarcely cry “weep*.10. Then down a green plain leaping.Reader TEXT 6. 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*. And so Tom awoke. they need not fear harm. foşnet. He'd have God for his father and never want* joy. and we rose* in the dark. laughing. My face turns green* and pale. Then come home. And the Angel told Tom. And your winter and night in disguise.
Crying “weep*. William Blake. 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). Grey-headed beadles* walked before. fii liniştit sight vision coffin sicriu.12. în preajmă to sport a zburda. Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands. a se deştepta TEXT 6. The hum* of multitudes was there. Now like a mighty* wind they raise to heaven the voice of song. And taught me to sing the notes of woe. And because I am happy and dance and sing.11. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 213 . Or like harmonious thunderings* the seats* of heaven among. hornar sold to sell. Till into the high dome* of Paul’s* they like Thames’ waters flow. William Blake. weep!” in notes of woe*! “Where are thy* father and mother? say*?” “They are both gone up to church to pray. with wands* as white as snow. And smiled among the winter’s snow. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Innocence) ‘Twas* on a Holy Thursday*. The children walking two and two in red and blue and green. coşciug by aproape. O what a multitude they seemed. these flowers of London town! Seated* in companies they sit with radiance* all their own*. their innocent faces clean. to be lacking something rose to rise (rose. lest* you drive* an angel from your door. They clothed me in the clothes of death.” weep see explanation above woe intense grief/sorrow/unhappiness thy your say? ia spune! heath câmpie stearpă injury rău. alături. it is ironic that “sweep” becomes “weep” (a plânge) soot funingine to curl a se încreţi/cârlionţa hush taci. The Chimney Sweeper (from Songs of Experience) A little black thing among the snow. They think they have done me no injury*. Then cherish* pity. Because I was happy upon the heath*.Reader chimney sweeper coşar. potoleşte-te. Who make up a Heaven of our misery*. wise guardians of the poor. Beneath them sit the aged men. a se juca to want to feel the need or longing for something. nedreptate misery intense unhappiness or suffering TEXT 6. risen): a se scula. but multitudes of lambs. And are gone to praise God and his Priest and King.
in the Revelation) to cherish to treasure something (a preţui. and to the Last Judgement. And their ways are filled with thorns*. And their fields are bleak* and bare*. Nor poverty the mind appal*. Babe can never hunger there. For where-e’er* the sun does shine. And where-e’er the rain does fall. when the ascension of Christ to heaven is celebrated beadle an officer in British churches in the past. 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. fertil. especially by keeping order wand baghetă dome hemispherical roof St Paul’s Cathedral the largest cathedral in London. ca nu cumva to drive (from) a alunga. fruitful fecund. sterp. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Experience) Is this a holy thing to see. rece. neroditor thorn spin. re-built th in the late 17 century. ghimpe where-e’er wherever to appal to make someone feel shocked and upset (a îngrozi) 214 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a monument of baroque architecture seated aşezaţi radiance great happiness that shows in someone’s face. a iubi) lest ca să nu. the 40 day after Easter. 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. William Blake.Reader ‘twas it was th Holy Thursday Ascension Day. a goni TEXT 6. soft. It is eternal winter there. In a rich and fruitful* land Babes reduced to misery.13. who helped the priest in various ways. lugubru bare gol. roditor fed to feed (fed): a hrăni usurous cămătăresc (see again the Glossary) bleak sterp.
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