Program postuniversitar de conversie profesională pentru cadrele didactice din mediul rural

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

SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY BRITISH LITERATURE

Cornelia MACSINIUC

2006

Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural

LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ

Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature

Cornelia MACSINIUC

2006

© 2006

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

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

Contents

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

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

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

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

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

Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural

4. 4.8. 3.3.2.1.5.1. 2. 3.3. 3. 4. 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. 3.4.1. 2.4.2.5. 3.3.1. 4. 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.1.2.2. 3.5.4.2. 3.2.4. 2.3.4. 4.1.5.4. 3.3.3. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.1. 3.1. 3.3.5.4.3.3. The Works of John Milton Unit objectives Milton.2.6. 3. 2.1. 3.1.7.2.1. 3.6. 2.2.2. 4.3.1. 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 . 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. 3.5.3. 3. 4. 3.4.3. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 4 4.2.2.5.1.Contents 2. 4. 3.2.3.4.3.

4.4.3. 5. 4.2. 5. 5. 5.2.3.1. 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.4.4.7.1. Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator.6.3.5.2. 5.3.4.2.1.6. 5.2.3. 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. 4.8. the frustrated idealist The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 96 98 98 98 100 103 103 103 105 105 107 107 110 110 111 111 113 115 116 117 118 118 118 119 121 123 123 124 125 127 128 128 129 130 132 132 133 134 134 135 136 136 136 137 139 139 140 142 142 143 iii 5 5.3.5.3. 4. 5.4.3.4.1.2.2.3. 5.2.1. 5.4. 5.3.6. 5.Contents 4. 5.4. Gulliver.4.4. 4. 5.4.5.4.2. 5.5. 4. 5. 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 . 4.1. 5.4. 4. 5.1. 4.1.4.1.4. 5. 4.1. 4. 5.2.3. 5.2.3.4. 5.7.3.2.3.2.2.4.4. 5.4. 4.2.5. 5.2.4. 5.

7.1.5.2.4.1.4.2.2. 6. 6.2.3.3. 6.2.2.4. 6.2. 6. 6. 6.1.1.3. 6.1. 6. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.2. 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.4. 6.4.1. 6. 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. 6.4. 6. 6. 6. 6.1.4.3. 6.4.3.1. The Seasons William Cowper.4.2.3. 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 6.4. 3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading Reader in seventeenth and eighteenth century literature Selected bibliography iv Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 6. 6.Contents Gallery of personalities SAA No.

Course objectives As already mentioned. Literature is always an important testimony to the evolution of this spirit. a carrier of values. You will be able to build a general picture of the main literary achievements of this period. this course will give you a minimum of contextual detail.Introduction INTRODUCTION 1. and an “agent” in the cultural dynamics in a country. the study of the present course will more efficiently contribute to your professional becoming. The double focus of the course – on general aspects of a particular period or doctrine. In this way. and on certain texts – will hopefully help you to overcome the relatively great temporal and cultural distance separating us from those centuries. You are expected and urged to bring to the understanding of this extended literary period the knowledge acquired in your previous study. 3. It also aims at developing your “reading competence. by encouraging your response to particular texts. and to the enrichment of your grasp of the English language. It will thus contribute to the consolidation of your knowledge and understanding of British culture and civilisation. among others). 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 will familiarise you with the defining features of the literary trends and doctrines of these two centuries. Milton. but also to examine more closely particular texts by the most important authors (Shakespeare. Blake. Before starting your study. and will highlight the contributions of their most representative literary personalities. Fielding. this course aims at enlarging your understanding of British culture and civilisation. Swift. 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 1 . What this course is about This course is a brief introduction to English literature in the 17th and 18th centuries. Defoe. such as was presented in your Cultural Studies course. but also an intimate acquaintance with the spirit of that culture and civilisation. How this course can help you The study of this course will widen your perspective on English literature and its evolution.” at helping you refine your perception of literary phenomena and categories. it would be helpful if you refreshed your acquaintance with the basic historical and cultural framework of the 17th and 18th centuries. Being concerned with aspects of literary history.

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

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

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

if you wish to supplement or clarify your knowledge • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 5 . not just Being. an asterisk must be understood to mark not just the word it is attached to. These auxiliary sections are: the Summary and a list of key words. the term Enlightenment. The terms included in the Glossary are marked by an asterisk (*) in the text of the unit. Thus. which contains titles that should not be very hard to find in libraries. which includes basic information about the life and work of the mentioned personalities.1.4. other instruments meant to assist your study. whose Glossaries will send you back to the Glossary in Unit 1. Some terms may recur in several units.1. in order to make sure you remember exactly what a term refers to. which will enable you to review and focus your knowledge. • the Selective bibliography at the end of the course. which indicates a minimal bibliography for each unit.Introduction 4. Sometimes. Most of the books included there are available in any University library. to organise it around the most important issues • the Glossary (in alphabetical order). the notion of heroic couplet is explained in subchapter 1. Auxiliary sections Each unit contains. which is explained in the Glossary in Unit 1. The materials indicated in the Further reading section and in the Selective bibliography (see below) offer you supplementary information. with the pages where you may find relevant information. in which terms or phrases that have been considered difficult or unfamiliar to you are explained. You may also be directed back to a certain subchapter in a previous unit. • Further reading. in Unit 1. will also appear in Units 5 and 6. for the Great Chain of Being*. when this notion is used again in Units 4 or 6. at the end. if necessary or desired. you will look up the whole phrase in the Glossary.3. you will be sometimes returned to the Glossary of a previous unit to reinforce or refresh your understanding of them. You may ask your tutor to help you with the access to those sources.3. the Glossaries will send you back to 1. For example. • the Gallery of personalities (in the alphabetical order of the last names). For instance. but the phrase of which that word is part.

some of these texts might seem difficult to you. before you start solving the task. 5. This is why the same word may appear with different explanations/translations in several glossaries. in which the words and phrases supposed to be unknown. and the weight of each assignment: 6 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . this should not take you too much time. The three SAAs are placed at the end of units 3. 5. the number of tasks. SAA no. The given explanation or translation into Romanian applies only to the respective context. Assessment and evaluation Besides the self-assessment questions included in each unit. The Reader The course is accompanied by a Reader. while SAA no. or misleadingly familiar to you are explained either in English or in Romanian. don’t hesitate to use a good dictionary.lIntroduction 4.2 will cover units 4 and 5. 1 will assess your knowledge of units 2 and 3. As the texts are not very long. The written test that you will sit at the end of the semester will add the other 60%. difficult. In any case. which contains the selection of texts you need in order to accomplish some of the course tasks. which will enable your tutor to assess your performance in the course work. and make sure you understand its general meaning or basic ideas. especially the poetry texts. A send-away assignment (SAA) is signalled in the text by the icon accompanying this textbox.5. As we are dealing with 17th and 18th century literature. and 6. The cumulated weight of these SAAs in your final grade is 40%. The table below represents the place. These first two SAAs will therefore consist in more than one task. If you should find these lexical notes insufficient for your understanding of a particular text. try to read each fragment more than once. The Reader provides you with little glossaries for each text. the course contains three send-away assignments (SAAs). or one word may be given an explanation/translation different from the one you might be familiar with.

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

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

1.5.1. 1.4. 1. 1. 1. 1. 1. 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 .3. 1. 1.4. 1. 1.4.2. 1.5.2.1.3.1.1.1.3.4.4. 1.4.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background UNIT 1 THE SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES: INTELLECTUAL AND LITERARY BACKGROUND Unit Outline 1 1.1. 1.4.2.1.

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

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

to superstition and obscurantism. the Enlightenment.3. The Deist notion of innate virtue came to be connected with man’s capacity for feeling. T F 12 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Enlightenment continued the Renaissance faith in man’s perfectibility and sought for man’s emancipation both as an individual and as a social being. The interest in the constitution and workings of the human mind awakened the awareness that man’s response to reality was not only rational. the central concern of the Enlightenment. which may be defined as the Age of Sensibility. Individual and social good was the object of all endeavours in this age. The Deist image of God as the “Universal Architect” reveals a rationalist-mechanicist conception of the universe. 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. and which prepared the way for the Romantic Age*. T F 3.4. in his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). The poet Alexander Pope indicated. 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 emergence of Deism was a reaction to religious dogmatism. T F 5. 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. 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. 1. which made Enlightenment England a model of civilisation for the Western world. appropriately. It was a general dedication to the cause of progress. with its belief in the perfectibility of man. when he declared: ”The proper study of mankind is Man.1. T F 4. Read the statements below and identify the true ones. in the latter part of the Age of the Enlightenment.” The whole century was preoccupied with the idea of man’s happiness and of the improvement of man’s condition on earth. The Enlightenment: an age of progress On the whole. The Royal Society was an institution concerned with the spreading of Neoclassical principles in art and literature.1. T F 2. but also affective and instinctual. for each sentence. Circle T (true) or F (false). 1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. continued the project of the Renaissance. The growing spirit of individualism.

The literature of the Renaissance was under the sign of the classical revival*.4. The division into Elizabethan. that the notion of reading public emerges now.1. and the literary field was no longer confined to the learned. It is significant. The Court was not only the catalyst of the emerging national feeling. the social diversification and the “unfixing” of the strictly hierarchical order of the Renaissance led gradually towards a “democratisation” of literature. It was the main focus of literary attention. but also the ultimate arbiter life on literature in matters of literary and artistic fashions. in the orbit of the crown. This is mainly connected with the rise of the middle classes and the growth of their cultural importance. T F 7. Numerous treatises on literary art established norms and precepts. with their Literature in the Age of Common Man cultivated taste. the great ages of the Renaissance and of the Enlightenment may be further divided according to various criteria. when the literary audience becomes more diversified. The Evangelical Revival shared with Deism the attempt to give a rational foundation to religious faith. symmetry. The Age of the Enlightenment excluded completely the interest in human feeling and emotion. with little or no classical knowledge. A new interest in rhetoric animated authors to pursue eloquence by a lavish use of figures of speech and the display of wit*.1. Jacobean* and Caroline* of the “high” and late Renaissance literature points not only to a temporal delimitation. in one way or another. the decrease in the power of the Crown. You may also need to revise some of the terms explained in the Glossary. but also to the close connection between the dominant literary values of those ages and Court life. 1. including readers of more modest education. and exalted Reason as the only defining human faculty. T F 8. and the accepted patterns and conventions were touchstones for literary virtuosity and originality. for proportion.” T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. at the end of the unit. to 1. and both writers and audiences were. The abundance of classical Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 13 . regularity. After 1688. If you have failed to identify any of the sentences correctly as true or false.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 6. 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. The 18th century is called sometimes The Age of Common Man. The absolute authority of the monarch made the Court the Influence of Court centre of intellectual and literary life. read again subchapters. Alexander Pope pointed out the humanistic orientation of the Enlightenment in his maxim “The proper study of mankind is man. There was a general care for discipline and refinement in composition. for instance. An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries From a literary point of view.1.

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

and the Puritan Andrew Marvell must also be included here. …addressed itself to learned readers. continued to be used throughout the 17th and 18th centuries: John Milton. or his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). It favoured conciseness. tight logical coherence and striking imagery. in a variety of poetical forms: philosophical poems. the ode*. which departed from the artificiality and poetry conventionalism of most Elizabethan poetry. George Herbert. Its perfect mastery is illustrated by works like Pope’s didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711). the pastoral* lyric. John Dryden (in the former). The sonnet fell into disuse during the late Renaissance and it was revived only towards the end of the 18th century. 4.3. religious faith – John Donne. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 15 . Andrew Marvell.2. The heroic couplet was the perfect verse couplet structure of the Age of Reason. A remarkable poetic development in the first half of the 17th century was the metaphysical poetry (John Donne. acquainted with the great classical authors and works.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 3. The most Renaissance lyric enduring poetic achievements of the early 17th century is the forms sequence of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609). concentration. the sonnet* – dominated Renaissance poetry.g. the blank verse* – on the model of Milton in his great Blank verse epic* Paradise Lost (1667) – was extensively used in the 18th century. for instance. The evolution of poetic forms The lyric. If you have failed to make the right match. by the Romantic poets. conveyed by means of a rich variety of rhetorical effects. The chief model for The sonnet sequence Renaissance soneteers was Petrarch* and his love sonnets to Laura. They approached other themes besides love: e. you need to revise subchapter 1. or meditative-descriptive poems like James Thomson’s The Seasons (1726-1730) or William Cowper’s The Task (1785). Other lyric forms endured: the ode. 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. …influenced English literary Neoclassicism. The common vehicle for it was the heroic couplet – two rhyming The Augustan heroic lines containing a complete statement. but English poets varied the highly conventional form of this kind of poem. at the end of the unit. Thomas Carew. Apart from the classical poetic forms that survived into the Restoration and the Augustan Age. Thomas Gray and William Collins (in the latter). It appealed both to the intellect and to the emotions. In parallel. and it made extensive use of wit. in its various forms – the song*. Robert Herrick). Alexander Pope. which are illustrative of a pre-Romantic* cross-current. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 1. combining classical restraint with force of argument and expressive clarity. James Thomson. original or translated epics. or religion and politics – John Milton. Its name refers to a certain Metaphysical expressive strategy. A “metaphysical” strain exists in Shakespeare’s final period of creation.

Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries The Renaissance was the Golden Age of English drama. in the space left below. In little more than half a century (1580-1642). revise subchapter 1.4. some of them of popular origin (the song. and the “poetry of sensibility” which announced the coming of the Romantic Age (Unit 6). together with their most outstanding representatives. It was the only form of literature which. through its representation on stage. If there should be major differences between them. 1. the ballad) and the increasing hostility to the artificiality and conventionalism of Augustan poetic diction* heralded the shift in taste which marked the beginning of Romanticism. a brilliant constellation of playwrights founded a dramatic tradition which represents the best and most original expression of the nation’s creative genius. enjoyed a widely popular appeal. the verse satires of Dryden and Pope (Unit 4). SAQ 3 Which are the most popular kinds of poems in the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least six of them. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. a new appreciation of older poetic forms. The flourishing of English drama during the Renaissance is a unique phenomenon. comparable perhaps only with the rise of the novel in the next century. In the following units of this course. at the end of the unit. we shall look more closely at some of the most representative poetic works of these two centuries: the metaphysical poetry of Donne and Marvell (Unit 2). 16 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .3.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Towards the end of the century.

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

though each in a different way. For each sentence. Shakespeare’s Elizabethan phase included a number of exquisite romantic comedies. at the end of the unit. but. or at least tinged with bitterness. his comedies become darker. 1. as in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida (1601-2) or The Winter’s Tale (1610-11). T F Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 4 For a revision of some important features of Renaissance English drama. Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a classic example of domestic tragedy. or The Silent Woman (1609). 18 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . T F 5. the hierarchy of English society. Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are the great masters. in miniature. Volpone (1606).4. read again subchapters 1. in Paradise Lost. 1. as in All’s Well That Ends Well (1602-3) or Measure for Measure (1604-5). The Alchemist (1610) and Bartholomew Fair (1614) are social comedies of city life. The English play-house during the Renaissance accommodated a diverse audience. The mixture of serious and comic elements results in tragicomedy. centred on the theme of love. T F 4. T F 7. Comedy in the early 17th century In the field of comedy. read the following statements.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background A distinct type in late Renaissance drama is domestic tragedy. identifying the four true ones.4. reminds of the fascinating villain-heroes of the Renaissance revenge tragedies by his extraordinary ambition and boldness. If you have failed to identify the true statements. intended to correct vices and follies by denouncing them. dealing with middle or lower class life and concentrating on personal and domestic maters – unlike “grand” tragedy. T F 6. Milton’s Satan.4. and 1. the satirical comedy. or in Philaster (1609) by John Fletcher and Francis Beaumont. Epicoene. The hero of revenge tragedy often destroys himself in his desire to right a wrong done to him or to another. The Jacobean and Caroline authors of revenge tragedies had Seneca as their model. reflecting. Seneca’s tragedies inspired Jacobean and Caroline authors in the representation of atrocities on stage. Renaissance tragedy had four acts – a structure borrowed from Seneca. whose fall from eminence marks the destruction of an order. T F 2.2.1. Ben Jonson* illustrates another form. a genre which will survive into the 18th century. with its noble characters. in the last period of creation. His best plays. T F 3. circle the appropriate letter: T (true) or F (false).

This parodic spirit was not confined to drama: the mockheroic style* was also used in poetry (e. 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. Under the influence of French tragedies. with their grandiose declamations and artificial conception of heroism. The main representatives – the Restoration Wits* – were courtiers and aristocrats who assumed the role of leaders of fashion and taste. for instance. 1669-70). 1777). John Gay. but it appealed to a wide middle class public. Henry Fielding). Drama during the Restoration period Restoration drama developed in an age of scepticism and cynicism. Alexander Pope) and in the novel (e. but serious drama declined during the 18th century. 1768. Restoration comedy presented an elegant society. There were a few attempts to revive classical tragedy or domestic tragedy. of pleasure-seeking and relaxation after the strict moral code imposed to the nation by the Puritans.4. who demanded models of virtue and decency. but whose aim was not so much to correct manners as to entertain. The best achievement in this genre belongs to John Dryden (The Indian Emperor. 1773). 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. Richard Cumberland (The Brothers. with idealised heroes and heroines divided between love and honour or duty. It lacked the latter’s liveliness and brilliance. Tragedy was replaced in popular taste by a form that stood in sharp contrast with the unheroic spirit of the age: heroic drama. mocks at certain theatrical conventions. in his satirical play The Beggar’s Opera (1728). Heroic plays.4.g. She Stoops to Conquer. Duke of Buckingham. these plays built a world of high passion and incredible bravery. 1769). or The Mistakes of a Night. The most representative works of this kind belong to Richard Steele (The Conscious Lovers. The Conquest of Granada. The School for Scandal. and it denounced puritanical virtue as hypocrisy. and Richard Brinsely Sheridan (The Rivals. which continued the realistic spirit of the earlier satirical plays. 1722). Heroic drama The comedy of manners 1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. In The Rehearsal (1671). 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. George Villiers. 1775.g. were a passing extravagance.4. satirises heroic tragedy and so does Henry Fielding in his successful parody The Tragedy of Tragedies. too. which ridiculed them through exaggerated imitation. Oliver Goldsmith (The GoodNatured Man. a stylish and sophisticated world. or The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great (1731). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 19 . A more representative achievement of the Restoration is the comedy of manners.3. but also of French and Spanish romantic novels of adventure. 1665.

If there should be major differences between them. together with their most outstanding representatives. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. revise subchapters 1.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.4.4. we shall focus on William Shakespeare’s later plays.4. and in Unit 4 you will be acquainted with more features of Restoration comedy. 20 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . to 1. Two moments in the evolution of English drama will be further detailed in this course: in Unit 2. at the end of the unit.

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

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

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

blank verse: unrhymed verse. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 24 . of the time of emperor Caesar Augustus (27 B. elevated style. The Great Latin writers of that age – Horace.D. The birth of the novel is the most significant literary development of this “Age of Common Man.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background modernity. often by means of paradox. used to express observations of general truth. noble and heroic characters. from a system of genres and styles dominated by classical influences to a more “democratic” tendency.” The short review of the dominant forms of poetry. with new genres accessible to a more inclusive reading public. however. It is.). burlesque: the exaggerated imitation. 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. From a literary point of view. a slow transition took place. of serious action. 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.C.-14 A. Virgil – were revered models for the English Augustan writers. and the emergence of the Age of Feeling prepared the way to the Romantic sensibility. part of the process of modernisation that the Age of Reason came to acknowledge its own limits. and a major influence on their aesthetic ideal. Ovid. predominantly middle-class. 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. which are reduced to the comically trivial. in a caricatural spirit.

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

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

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

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

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

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

2. the man of action King Lear: the madness of tragic grief To be or to seem: Othello Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience Shakespeare’s last plays The plot of The Tempest Major themes Symbols in The Tempest The play-metaphor The metaphysical poets Characteristics of metaphysical poetry The metaphysical conceit Themes in John Donne’s poetry Donne’s love poems Donne’s religious poems Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode Nature as “mystic book” in Marvell’s poetry The theme of love in Marvell’s poems Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 32 32 32 33 33 35 36 37 37 38 39 40 40 43 43 44 46 46 47 48 48 49 50 52 53 54 54 56 56 57 58 59 61 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 31 .2.10.1. 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.4.3. 2. 2. 2.2.3.2. 2. 2. 2. 2. 2.9. 2.1. 2. 2.11.6.3. 2.1.3.7.7.2. 2.3. 2. 2. 2. 2.1.5.2.The late Renaissance and the Baroque UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE Unit Outline 2 2. 2. 2.2.3.5. 2.3.2.2.8.2.2.2.4. 2.3.2. 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.2.12.3. 2. 2.6.2.3.2.3.1.8.1. 2.

and Edmund Spenser* complete the literary picture of the glorious Elizabethan Age. stable and modern state. anxiety and even pessimism. The vision of a harmonious. to scepticism. 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. Christopher Marlowe*. Increasingly prosperous and powerful owing to colonial expansion and economic progress.1. The former expansiveness. The Elizabethan age: the English high Renaissance Features of the high Renaissance spirit 32 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . well-ordered universe. to the perception of man as a bundle of contradictions and the view of the universe as threatened by instability. In the late Renaissance. Under Queen Elizabeth I. Elizabethan England also witnessed an explosion of creative energies in the field of letters and arts. this spirit declined under the pressure of certain historical events* and cultural tendencies. during whose reign England developed into a strong.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. The emergence of the baroque sensibility The early and high Renaissance* in England developed under the Tudor monarchs*. but the outstanding achievements of writers like Thomas Kyd*. Renaissance England reached the climax in its flourishing. The spirit that dominated this age was typical of the Renaissance. idealism and confidence gave way to a growing sense of disorder and violence. with its sense of confidence and optimism. Philip Sydney*. the sense of tradition as a guarantee for order. High Renaissance English literature has its most accomplished expression in Shakespeare’s work.

and not properly forming a “school. grandeur. The unexpected. and Christopher Marlowe’s characters. The Jacobean and Caroline drama* is essentially baroque. ornamental rhetoric and preference for convention and artifice. The Renaissance celebrated Nature and life with its joys. the spectacular and the sumptuous. or the world as stage. 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. a tendency commonly associated with the baroque is represented by the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. Shakespeare’s early comedies and history plays* are Elizabethan in spirit. Although very diverse. its sense of form. both in its themes and motifs. destroyed by the monstrous excess of their ambition.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.1. they are the supreme dramatic achievement of late Renaissance. for excess. nothing reflects better its emergence than drama. In lyric poetry. to the macabre. striking imagery. proportion and symmetry. and. irony and ambiguity. Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry The essence of the baroque sensibility is conflict and tension. splendour. the concentration of expression in their poems stand in contrast with the Elizabethan smooth and orderly patterns of versification. wisdom and madness. and in its dramatic conception. contrasts with the baroque taste for the extravagant. Characteristic of the baroque spirit are the sense of ethical relativism and the exploration of the borderline between truth and illusion. The Renaissance cult of rational order. refinement and cruelty. with its abundance of bloody deaths. the paradoxes and contrasts which make up man’s mixed nature.” these poets distinguish themselves by the ingenuity with which they force the limits of language. but also to pomp. St.1.2. on which the “show” of life must end. The baroque vision of experience of the Metaphysical Poets required a new kind of poetic language. Paul’s Cathedral in London (16751708): an example of baroque architecture 2. the tragic divisions in man’s soul. of confusing or transgressing limits. the difficult – often irregular – rhythms. Even the Elizabethan dramatists cultivated elements which announced the Baroque. sensualism and mysticism. The Baroque displays attraction to obscurity and melancholy. The best examples are Thomas Kyd’s revenge tragedy. the extensive use of paradox.1. life and death. the Baroque displayed a sharp consciousness of life’s ephemerality. capable of rendering its 33 Revenge tragedy Metaphysical poetry Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . of man’s limitations and the inevitability of death. Characteristic baroque themes were those of life as dream and life as theatre. but his great tragedies belong not only chronologically to the Jacobean age: as embodiments of the baroque spirit. reason and superstition. in literature. with the tendency of breaking proportions.

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

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

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

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

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

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

The late Renaissance and the Baroque Evil as destruction of the “natural” order unnatural acts which violate this order. In Othello. essence. Othello is thrown into the terrible agony of suspecting that beauty and innocence might disguise corruption. To be or to seem: Othello Evil coming from those who are naturally closest to us is intolerable. 2.2. and the tragic disaster shows how the play of appearances can dissolve firm moral opposites like truth/lie. the bond of a love marriage is the frame in which Shakespeare explores the theme of evil in connection with that of appearance vs. Evil is that which destroys Nature.6. and this destroys his confidence in a moral order. innocence/guilt. evil succeeds precisely because of the perfection of Desdemona’s purity and Othello’s trusting nature. acting against it. unfaithful. Desdemona. 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). painted by James Graham (early 17th century) 40 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Othello. is led by Iago to believe his wife. faithfulness/betrayal. and its outburst is always accompanied by the awakening of the tragic hero’s consciousness of the divorce between seeming and being. The noble protagonist. In Othello. Claudius’s fratricide and the cruelty of Lear’s daughters are transgressions which turn the tragic hero’s world upside down. Othello kills her and takes his own life when her innocence is proved to him. a brave and honest general of the Venetian republic. With his mind poisoned by a false evidence of Desdemona’s infidelity. Scene from Othello. As a result of Iago’s manipulations.

The storm scenes intensify symbolically the hero’s tragic sense of confusion. kills the sleeping king and takes the throne. The effects of this sacrilege against Nature are devastating. 1. it bleeds.6. The baroque motif of madness is. innocence and corruption. / It weeps. underlining the theme of knowledge.” The imagery* of disease is extended to the protagonist’s conscience. and unmotivated violence and cruelty. ____________________ Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The theme of evil is dramatised as a crime against the bonds of blood.2. at the instigation of his wife. ____________________ 5. The hero’s exacerbated introspective tendency makes him postpone action. invaded by “horrible imaginings” and hallucinations. If any of your solutions should not correspond. the horror of evil is amplified by the fact that the protagonist’s crime is committed against Duncan as his king. and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds. kinsman and guest. one of Duncan’s sons. is manipulated into confusion about truth and falsehood. and she is destroyed by the unbearable Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 41 . you need to revise subchapters 2.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. Read them carefully and fill in the indicated space with the right title(s). ____________________ 2. 2. who has a trusting nature. ____________________ 3. illusion and truth.7. disorder. Persuaded by his wife to hasten the fulfillment. There is “no sweet oblivious antidote” to cure Lady Macbeth’s “diseased” mind either. “Our country sinks beneath the yoke. Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience In Macbeth. Macbeth. a brave and worthy general in Duncan’s army. he multiples his crimes. which constitutes a violation of the natural (therefore moral) order. but.2. paradoxically. at the end of the unit. Macbeth’s conscience soon starts accusing him. ____________________ 4. The evil reverberates in the whole land: in the words of Malcolm. to 2. arranging the murder of all those who might threaten his power.2.2. Macbeth’s ambitions are inflamed by the prediction of three witches that he shall be king of Scotland. The protagonist. since it accompanies the hero’s revelation of the discrepancy between appearance and reality.

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

the shipwreck.g. In its opening scene. on which he lives alone with his daughter. and The Tempest – are described either as tragi-comedies or as romance plays. the pronounced elements of the supernatural. while for physical labour he uses Caliban. or tension and suspense followed by happy reversals – features that make them tragi-comedies. are encouraged by Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the rule of the island. who instantly fall in love with each other. magic. respectively –. Three lines of action develop. marvelous. Prospero is the former and legitimate duke of Milan. It is also in these last plays that Shakespeare’s dramatic imagination relies to a greater extent on symbolism. his faithful spiritservant. They mix serious and comic action. is considered the finest. of exile and return). Alonzo. the master of an island. 43 John William Waterhouse: Miranda –The Tempest (1916) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . duke of Milan. The Tempest (1611). They may also be described as romance plays. usurped by his brother Antonio and forced into exile twelve years before. Alonzo. and Sebastian. the long journey.2.2. their plots contain characteristic ingredients like dangers which are finally avoided.9. a drunken servant. Sebastian and Ferdinand – Alonzo’s brother and son. the sense of a benevolent providential design. 2. Shakespeare’s last plays Shakespeare’s four plays belonging to his last period of creation (1608-1611) – Pericles. After the tragedies. The Winter’s Tale. king of Naples.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. the jester. the theme of loss and recovery. who. the fairy-tale atmosphere. the last expression of Shakespeare’s mature genius. One of these sub-plots involves the courtiers: Antonio persuades Sebastian to kill his sleeping brother. and his supernatural powers have given him control over both the natural elements and the spirits. The plot of The Tempest Of these four plays. by his powers. the choice of a remote setting. a storm wrecks the ship carrying Antonio. but his plan is prevented by Ariel’s music. He had long studied the arts of magic. as well as other passengers.8. We soon find out that the storm and shipwreck have been magically provoked by Prospero. His acts of magic are fulfilled through Ariel. separated from each other in various parts of the island and all believing the others dead. owing to the improbability of the action. to take his throne. a creature whose beastly nature is beyond Prospero’s attempt of educating him. Trinculo. involving the shipwrecked characters. myth. has turned him into a slave. these plays offer patterns of reconciliation and positive solutions to life’s contradictions. Cymbeline. Caliban hates and fears Prospero. Another sub-plot brings together Ferdinand and Miranda. In a plot-line that parallels and parodies the latter. and certain themes and motifs (e. Miranda.

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

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

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

Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false) for each sentence.2. You must find them among the following statements. Their styles are different. but each of them. Prospero had lost his power as the duke of Milan because his studies distanced him from the immediate world which he was supposed to rule. and this makes them both masters of metaphysical wit. Prospero intends to use his magic power and supernatural knowledge in his regained authority as duke of Milan. in his own way. Ferdinand and Miranda represent the innocent young generation capable of renewing Prospero’s former world. The power of music has no effect on Caliban. 1.3. was first intended to bring discredit on them. 2. except that of terrifying him. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 47 . The betrayal of his brother and the plotting of the courtiers on the island were severely punished by Prospero.9 to 2. A baroque feature of The Tempest is the emphasis on the theatrical quality of the action. T F 7. Two essential symbolic elements contribute to the development of the theme of regeneration: the sea-journey and music. T F 4. T F 6. applied to certain poets of the early and mid-seventeenth century. of which three are false. T F 2. John Donne and Andrew Marvell illustrate best the baroque sensibility of the 17th century in their themes and expressive strategies.12. staged and managed by Prospero through his magic art. at the end of the unit. revise subchapters2. T F Make sure your answers are right by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 7 Let us remember a few things about The Tempest. T F 5.” and many disliked its cultivated difficulty. combines an outstanding intellectual brilliance with lyric grace. If any of your choices should be wrong. The metaphysical poets The term metaphysical. The contemporaries referred to their poetry as “strong lines.2. T F 3.

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

Each answer should not exceed 2 lines / 20 words. and the same realistic force. In the treatment of both themes. Two important themes in his poetic work are love and faith. ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Themes in John Donne’s poetry John Donne is one of the most influential poets of the 17th century. Donne displays the same sophisticated wit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 49 . and both are explored in the whole richness and variety of their possible experiences. If they should differ considerably. and 2.3. and allegory. revise subchapters 2. 2. pastoral* conventions. in poems belonging to John Donne and Andrew Marvell.3. and a highly original one. He rejected the regular versification of Elizabethan poetry .2. and created a style which had the vigour and liveliness of colloquial speech. its decorative use of classical mythology.3. Use the space left below.1. the same blend of ingenious reasoning and intense passion. at the end of the unit. In the following subchapters. the two most outstanding representatives of this poetic trend in the 17th century. you will look at some famous examples of metaphysical conceits. and which confers dramatic realism to his poems.3.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 8 Order the main aspects describing metaphysical poetry into four essential features.

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

If they should differ significantly. at the end of the unit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 51 . he develops one of his most famous conceits. paying special attention to the last three stanzas. Here. in the Reader). Explain the surprising analogy that he makes in order to speak about mutual love.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 9 Read Donne’s poem (Text 2. Formulate your answer in the space left below. in no more than 18 lines / 180 words. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. as well. which explains what a metaphysical conceit is. Read the poem again.3.6..2. you need to revise subchapter 2.

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

2.6.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 10 Read Text 2.5. representing Donne’s sonnet Batter My Heart. If there should be significant differences. at the end of the unit. nature.3. 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. from the Reader. Three major themes can be detached from his poetry: love. This meditation on political conflict and national history is impressive by its clarity and controlled variations of tone. and love of country. the greatest of political poems in English literature: An Horatian Ode* upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland (written in 1650). As a Puritan* patriot. In the last six lines.3. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. living through the turbulent years of the Civil War*. 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. Marvell left.7. paradoxical feelings by means of a conceit which exploits metaphorically the contrast between marriage and rape. Donne suggests his contradictory. according to some critics. and read the poem again. revise subchapter 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 53 .

these details as emblems of a transcendent reality.” associated with his mistress’s preference for a prolonged courtship. Although loyal to the Puritan cause. On a Drop of Dew 2. shyness] and accept his passionate love.” and finally dissolves itself “into the glories of the almighty Sun. and many of his poems reveal his delight in the contemplation of rural nature.8.e. developed then into a complex analogy with the pure Christian soul and its relation with earth and with heaven. The theme of love in Marvell’s poetry Of Marvell’s love poems. King Charles I Stuart. The most illustrative poem. Marvell emphasises the dignity with which the defeated king met his fate. On the other hand. is On a Drop of Dew. and thus he can find reason to praise both of them. He rather sees the events and the fate of the two rulers in the context of a providential history.7.3. 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. A natural detail. for fear that it might grow] impure. The speaker’s argument opposes the “deserts of vast eternity. however.e. He showed a deep love for the countryside. The carpe diem* motif was popular in Renaissance poetry. the most accomplished is To His Coy Mistress. in which both of them act according to a divine order. reveals thus its symbolic dimension to the poet’s contemplative mind. Marvell often sees. It is a seduction poem. 2. in contrasting colours. to change the form of ruling power). aspiring to union with almighty God. which begins with a most accurate description of a dew-drop on a rose petal. behaving with royal grace in his last minute. anticipating the early Romantic attitude to nature.” so the Christian Soul denies the earth and its “impure” pleasures. as if Nature itself were a “mystic book. Nature as “mystic book” Another side of Marvell’s poetic personality is illustrated by his nature poetry. Just as the dew-drop is “trembling. which illustrates the poet’s skill in combining the playful and the serious. Gifted with a sharp sense of observation of natural detail.” whose visible beauties are the key to spiritual truths. a masterpiece of metaphysical wit.3. on the scaffold. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Carpe diem 54 .e. but Marvell’s poem extends it into a meditation on time. in which the speaker develops an ingenious argument in order to persuade his mistress to give up her coyness [i. pictured with remarkable precision. in this respect.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. lest it grow [i. What begins as a nature poem is extended into a religious poem by means of a metaphysical conceit. Marvell does not portray Oliver Cromwell and his opponent. His nature poems have usually a mystical tendency.

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

The late Renaissance and the Baroque

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

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

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

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

Gallery of personalities
• • Aristotle (384-322 B.C.): Greek philosopher, author of works on logic, ethics, politics, poetics, rhetoric, metaphysics. Johnson, Samuel (1709-1784): the most influential critic of the 18th century, author of the impressive critical-biographical work Lives of the Poets (1779-1781), editor of Shakespeare’s work (1765). He compiled the first important Dictionary of the English Language (1755). Kyd, Thomas (1557-1595): one of the most popular Elizabethan dramatists, the author of The Spanish Tragedy, the prototype of the Renaissance revenge tragedy, modelled on the plays of Seneca (se again subchapter 1.3.2 in Unit 1). Marlowe, Christopher (1564-1593): Elizabethan dramatist, the
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most important and influential of Shakespeare’s precursors. His tragedies (Tamburlane the Great, Doctor Faustus, The Jew of Malta) depict titanic heroes, whose extraordinary will power and ambition set them on a risky quest (for absolute power, knowledge and wealth, respectively). Sidney, Philip (1554-1586): important poet of the Elizabethan age, best known through his sequence of love sonnets Astrophil and Stella. He is also the author of a prose romance, Arcadia, and of a critical prose essay, An Apology [i.e. defense] of Poetry, which played a major role in the definition of English Renaissance literary aesthetics. Spenser, Edmund (1552-1599): one of the greatest English poets, whose influence on later poets is comparable to that of Shakespeare and Milton. Like Sidney (see below), Spenser wrote a sonnet sequence, Amoretti, which enjoyed great popularity. His masterpiece is the allegorical poem The Fairie Queen, a culmination of Renaissance poetic art, which glorifies Queen Elizabeth. Tudor monarchs: Henry VII (1485-1509), who established national order and unity after a long period of feudal war; Henry VIII (1509-1547), Elizabeth I (1558-1603).

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

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

3. 3. 3.1.2. 3. 3. 3. 3.1.2. 3. 3.4.2. 3.6.1. 3.1. 3. 3.4. 3.3.5. 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 .4.3. 3.4.2.2.4.4.3.5.2. 3. 3.5. 3. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.5.1.2. the Christian humanist Milton’s early poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso Lycidas – a pastoral elegy Milton’s sonnets Sonnet VII Sonnet XVII Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Raphael’s warning to Adam The creation of the world The seduction of Eve The world after the Fall The heroes of Paradise Lost Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell Satan. 3.4.4.The works of John Milton UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON Unit Outline 3. Unit objectives The Works of John Milton Milton.5.3.

His education was eminently that of a Christian humanist. as well as his moral inflexibility. etc.1. baroque* vision.). theology. He returned to England when the troubles which were to lead to the Civil War* started. In his prose essays and pamphlets*. he approached a diversity of subjects. he studied Latin. and for almost twenty years he served their ideal of a truly reformed England. politics. the Christian humanist Milton is one of the most prominent figures of the 17th century. At Cambridge (1625-1629). the greatest epic poem in English literature. After that. and the course of his literary career was consistently marked by his involvement in the political. he went on a trip to Italy. and he made up his mind about his own position in the conflicts that agitated his country.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. Milton. etc. 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. He devoted himself heart and soul to the cause defended by the Puritans*. Paradise Lost. Milton had from an early age the conviction of his poetic vocation. family. 63 John Milton (1608-1674) A man of impressive learning The Puritan patriot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the author of a work which represents a highly original synthesis of Renaissance humanism*.g. accumulating an impressive knowledge in a diversity of fields (e. he continued to read intensively. the freedom of the press. written in English and in Latin. and his acquaintance with the great artistic achievements of that country and with prominent personalities enriched his education and contributed to his erudition. religious and civil debates of his age. Christian faith and classical formal perfection. His enormous learning. mathematics. music. Greek and Hebrew. and he dedicated long years of study and preparation to his accomplishment as a creator. rhetoric and the great works of the classics. Milton’s enduring reputation is ensured by his masterpiece. religion. as a publicist. geography. such as education. recommended him for the office of Latin Secretary to the Council of State. which exerted a huge influence on many generations of poets. In 1638.

Milton’s Christian humanism consists in this fusion of classical form and Christian themes. As his poetic personality gained in self-confidence. Milton follows Ovid in the emphasis on sensuous enjoyment. As a poet. 3. L’Allegro describes a day – from morning till sunset – in the life of the cheerful man. the pastoral* image of the shepherd becomes a metaphor for the poet-priest engaged in the exploration of high Christian themes. these two sides are usually kept apart in these poems. He sought inspiration in biblical mythology. Ovid*. approaching the great religious themes that enabled him to assert his genius. Virgil*. to whose excellence he aspired to rise. with its pastoral delights. but his maturity and experience enabled him to bring to fulfilment the most important part of his poetic work. or the two sides of the poet’s soul. However. Milton’s first important poem in English on a religious theme was written in 1629: On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity. in the perfect integration of classical allusion and pagan mythology with Christian spirituality. Milton’s early poems Milton started writing poetry very early. is in touch with divine secrets. the Nativity Ode* is a landmark in his creation. in the optimism and exuberance accompanying the contemplation of reviving nature. Milton places emphasis on the dignity of agricultural labour and the 64 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2. celebrating the birth (the “nativity”) of Christ and its inauguration of a new order for humanity. However. On the other hand.The works of John Milton The Christian humanist poet a position that he occupied from 1649 until 1660. he started to move away from themes and concerns which were defining for the classicist spirit of the Renaissance. for instance. and he was perfect master of a variety of styles. In the Sixth elegy.1. His models were the great Greek and Latin poets (Homer*. which already displayed the ambivalence in Milton’s poetic identity as both Christian poet and classicist humanist. This poem was intended as the first in a series about the significant moments of the Christian year. With the Restoration*. and his first notable poems were seven Latin elegies*. Milton wrote with the same ease and grace both in English and in Latin. in the treatment of the theme of love and the use of Greek mythology.2. They deal with contrasting moods of poetic inspiration. as it is also an ambitious assertion of Milton’s own literary birth as a “poet-priest. As in other poems. which are in fact complementary: L’Allegro [“the cheerful man”] and Il Penseroso [“the pensive/melancholy man”]. etc. who.” The Latin elegies The Nativity Ode 3. like a priest. In some of them. but Milton did not complete his plan. his political hopes ended. by his aspiration to be a Christian epic* poet. in these poems Milton appears highly preoccupied by his poetic vocation. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso To Milton’s long years of preparation for the fulfilment of his vocation belong also two poems.).

polyphonic sounds of the organ. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. In the latter. In each poem.1. the diversity of subjects in his prose essays and pamphlets.The works of John Milton satisfactions that it offers.” in which the studious poet finds the gratification of intellectual experience. the song of the milkmaid) contrasts with the deep. The final part of Il Penseroso expresses the poet’s aspiration of attaining visionary power. and on the happiness of rural life. In Il Penseroso. gives way to the mystic exaltation of the poet-student listening to religious music. to rival the classics in his perfect mastery of Latin. The diurnal activities and the cheerfulness of L’Allegro are replaced here by the nocturnal peace and quiet of the “lonely tower. c. SAQ 1 Make the right choice to continue each of the three beginning statements. b. in his poetic work.e. with its simple pleasures. If your choices should be wrong. the integration. The secular* pleasures of common life. you will thus review some aspects of Milton’s literary personality. Milton’s Christian humanism is reflected in a. at the end of the unit. the poet hopes to hear “more than is meant to meet the ear” – i. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso a. to become a great epic poet of the Christian age. are complementary poems about poetic inspiration and creative moods. to master a variety of styles. Milton’s literary ambition was a. celebrate the diurnal pleasures of pastoral life and its activities. revise subchapters 3.2. appropriate mythological allusions contribute to the creation of the atmosphere. and 3. he expects to discern in the heavenly notes a spiritual truth. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 65 . There is both parallelism and contrast between the two poems. the crowing of the cock.” contemplative mood. his constant preoccupation with his own poetic becoming. of classical erudition with biblical themes. but the “natural” music of L’Allegro (the song of the lark. 3. in Il Penseroso. b. b. Are Milton’s first poems in English which deal with a Christian theme. in L’Allegro. there is a strong emphasis on music. c. 2. the poet emphasises the blessings of the “pensive. c. 1. In both poems.

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

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

completing it in 1665 and publishing it in 1667.” He had always dreamed of reaching the stature of the great epic poets that were his models – Homer. and of leaving to posterity an undying work. respectively. If there should be significant differences.2. when he was already blind. in the Reader). This formal pattern usually corresponds to a certain thematic structure.4. and he worked at it over several years. and it represented the fulfillment of his ambition to write an epic which would be “doctrinal to a nation. 3. which in Sonnets VII and XVII is the same. read again subchapter 3. His blindness was no obstacle – as he advanced in the composition of the poem.1. Read these sonnets (Texts 3.2. Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Milton began the composition of his masterpiece in 1657. Dante* –. and the two sonnets. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Virgil.The works of John Milton SAQ 2 Milton adopted the form of the Italian sonnet. the passages stored in his mind were transcribed after his dictation. As the several Invocations in the poem suggest. and 3. paying attention to what their octave and sestet deal with. he expected the inspiring Muse to compensate for his physical blindness with a 68 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . made up of two sections: an octave (an eight-line stanza) and a sestet (a six-line stanza). at the end of the unit. What is the common thematic development in these two sonnets? Your answer should not exceed 8 lines/80 words.3. Paradise Lost was the fruit of long years of preparation and meditation.

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. are gathered to listen to Satan. The twelve books which make up Paradise Lost unfold an impressive epic action.” full of the bitterness of defeat. obedience and rebellion. brought about by his disobedience. Finally. the greatest synthesis of the Western literary tradition. etc. man’s temptation and fall into sin. in theme a daring. but by Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 69 . burning in the “darkness visible” of those “regions of sorrow.” He suggests to his followers that their “work” should no longer be done by force – since that is the attribute of the Almighty –.” forever deprived of the glory.4. the fault with The Felix culpa happy consequences. an evil which is turned to good in God’s overall plan for the history of creation. and of Adam and Eve Lost from Paradise. Milton had thought. Incapable of accepting the thought of submission and of his imprisonment in Hell. original epic scenario.1. he decided on the subject of the Fall – the theme of Paradise double fall. the poem develops an implicit debate on such contraries as freedom and tyranny. declares his hatred against God and his intention to regain Heaven. is subordinated to the poetic intensification or clarification of the main theme.” as he anticipated in Il Penseroso. which is never ornamental. He interprets poetically the biblical events. Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The poem begins in conventional epic manner. (divine) love and (Satanic) hatred. and his loss of Paradise. in fact. Starting from the dualism good/evil. predestination*. the creation of the world and of man. over the years. is presented as a necessary moment in the “Eternal Providence*”. of Lucifer* from Heaven. to “illumine” what is “dark” in him.” and the central theme of his poem is that of felix culpa* – the fortunate mistake. with the poet’s invocation of the Muse. knowledge and ignorance/innocence. His work is encyclopaedic. 3. enemy]” who “holds the tyranny of Heaven. of many possible subjects for his capital work – subjects inspired either from British or from The subject and biblical history. The “lost Archangel.e. as he stated in the opening Invocation. accumulated throughout his life. Satan is determined to wage “eternal war” to his “grand Foe [i. happiness and peace they had enjoyed in Heaven. These problems may be summarised by the alternative freedom vs. but his erudition. Milton’s ambition was.The works of John Milton more penetrating understanding of spiritual truths. Paradise Lost defines Milton best as a Christian humanist. Its Christian frame absorbs and integrates Milton’s astonishing learning. “to justify the ways of God to men. Then the reader is plunged into the middle of the action: the fallen angels in Hell. in which man’s fall. whose main moments are the fall of the rebel angels. and thus to enable him to attain indeed to a “prophetic strain. Milton approached in his grandiose epic problems which provoked heated polemics in his time.

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

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

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

If your answer should differ significantly from the offered suggestions. through Raphael’s words. Blake: Urizen as the creator of the material world (from the poem Europe.7. What does Milton suggest by the image of God using his “golden compasses”? Answer in the space below. in the Reader presents.The works of John Milton SAQ 4 Text 3. W. the first moments in the creation of the world: the making of heavens and skies. 1794) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 73 . A Prophecy. 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 10 lines/100 words. and the “Spirit of God” infusing life into the primal ocean. read the fragment again. more carefully.

while Adam tries to convince her that together they would be more safe from harm. is now troubled by the “higher winds” of negative passions – “anger.” but to “open eyes” and bring those who taste closer to the condition of a god. Credulous Eve tastes from the forbidden fruit and tries to convince Adam that its effect is not to open the way to “evil unknown. Their former innocent sensuality is now replaced by guilty lust and the feeling of shame.5. and. whose spirit has entered the body of a serpent. The seduction of Eve Book IX presents the great scene of Eve’s seduction by Satan. Adam is chilled with horror at Eve’s irresponsible mistake but decides to share her fate. The “calm region” of their state of mind.The works of John Milton 3.4. and all harmony between them is destroyed by bitter reciprocal accusations. Eve is amazed at the miracle of a beast capable of speech and. since the “link of nature” is so strong between them that he cannot imagine living without her. hate / Mistrust. Book IX: Eve and the Serpent (illustration by John Martin. the “subtlest [i. certain that the proud tempter will not be successful. At last. and all The effects of Nature is in pain.” she is finally seduced by his promise of higher knowledge and by his assurance that there is no sin in such aspiration. W. Satan gives voice again to his torments and to his ambition of destroying God’s creation. their inward the fall on Nature peace. for a moment. discord” – which make reason and will helpless. The disaster of the original sin shakes the foundations of the natural order: Earth trembles. Meanwhile. most subtle*] beast of all the field. 1827) 74 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . he is disarmed by her Satan with Adam and angelic grace. but he regains the strength of his hate and appears to Eve (1808) her in the splendid shape of the Serpent.” Back to guarded Paradise in this disguise. her argument wins: she is willing to put her innocence to trial. the thundering skies weep. Adam and Eve have a difference of opinion: Eve insists that they should divide their daily labour and work in different places. suspicion. Blake: Satan finds Eve alone.e. flattered by his praise of her “celestial beauty.

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

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

3. The heroes of Paradise Lost Many critics have remarked the paradox that the heroic spirit of Milton’s epic is embodied in Satan. however.5. It may be argued. If they should differ in major points.The works of John Milton SAQ 6 Text 3. at the end of the unit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 77 . which they fully assume. 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. read the fragment again. that both Satan and the human couple are heroic – each in a different way in their endurance of the bitter consequences of their sin. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.9. in the Reader represents the ending of Paradise Lost. more carefully.

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

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

.3. in the Reader contains a part of Satan’s speech before his followers. “and “The mind is its own place. and 3.5. “A mind not to be changed by time or place. and point out what features of Satan’s nature are illustrated by the following lines: A. at the end of the unit. a Hell of Heaven”? (Answer in no more than 4 lines/40 words.2. If there are significant differences. and in itself / Can make a Heaven of Hell. and read the indicated fragment again. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.5. His words reveal some of the defining features of Milton’s hero. Read the whole fragment carefully.) B. revise subchapters 3. 80 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in Hell.1.” (6 lines /60 words) Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The works of John Milton SAQ 7 Text 3.

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

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

and with the Christian compassion for their unhappy choice. Civil War: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. as a sign of consecration or sanctification. his courage and majesty. apprenticeship: the training for a trade or for any kind of activity.3. Baroque: see the Glossary in Unit 2. be tested for the responsibility which must accompany the exercise of his free will. Undoubtedly. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 83 . The central events in Milton’s epic are the fall of Lucifer and of the rebel angels. Milton justifies the fall of man and his exile from Paradise in the context of a providential history. and the culmination of his poetic achievement as a Christian humanist. the creation of the world and of man. Milton emphasises his fortitude and strength of will. the fall of man and the loss of Paradise. The declared aim of Milton’s epic is “to justify the ways of God to men. Satan is dominated by powerful negative passions which keep him the prisoner of an inner hell. offers a brief presentation of the subject and structure of the poem.4. His destructive energy represents a negation of the creative power of the divine word.The works of John Milton in two of his sonnets. Subchapter 3. Adam and Eve are treated both with the typical Renaissance admiration for man’s potential and virtues. in which divine grace will eventually turn all evil into good. and the promise of man’s reconciliation with God through the sacrifice of Christ. 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. but also in which man may. which interprets poetically key moments in biblical history and elements of biblical mythology.” and its great Christian theme is that of felix culpa. concerns itself with Milton’s heroes in Paradise Lost. put in the service of evil. Subchapter 3.5. which are. In Milton’s vision of the original sin. his love of freedom. at any time. the most fascinating and complex creation is Satan – Lucifer in his fallen condition. however. Milton’s impressive epic poem Paradise Lost (1667) is the fruit of his mature vision. presented in subchapter 3.

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

1. in which he explores his inner hell. 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.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. In both of them.C. 40 lines/400 words should be enough for your answer (apart from the lines that you are expected to quote for illustration).2. His speech reveals Satan’s tormented mind and the multitude of passions that agitate his soul. in Milton’s Paradise Lost.2. 1 This assignment covers Unit 2 and Unit 3. romantic in The Tempest –. Satan prepares himself to enter Paradise and to accomplish his diabolical design of tempting Eve. which reveals the complexity of Milton’s hero.The works of John Milton • Virgil: Publius Ovidius Maro (70-19 B. the paragraphs about Macbeth in 2. with special attention to the indicated subchapters.. in the Reader represent short fragments from Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest. in the Reader renders most of his memorable monologue. and 2.5. at the end of the play. and the last paragraph of 2. Texts 2. one of the greatest Roman poets. It will be therefore advisable to revise the preceding unit. the baroque motif of the theatrical illusion is developed..). Text 3. God’s creation. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. Identify his conflicting feelings and the various thoughts that trouble his conscience.2. whose epic poem The Aeneid relates the experiences of Aeneas after the fall of legendary Troy. At the beginning of Book IV. either with remarkable lucidity or blinded by his hate and ambition. Send-away assignment no. before the final battle. • Read attentively this fragment.4. and thus of destroying man. before he firmly decides to carry out his evil plan. Prospero’s speech closes the representation given in honour of Ferdinand and Miranda.3. what is the difference in the implications of the two play-metaphors? The answer to these questions should not exceed 25 lines / 250 words.1. 2. You will find it helpful to read again subchapter 2. 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 . You will thus be drawing a portrait of Milton’s Satan.1. • What characteristic baroque theme do both fragments illustrate? Given the different context – tragic in Macbeth. A revision of subchapter 3. Macbeth delivers his monologue immediately after he is informed about Lady Macbeth’s death.

but the consequence of evil influence. however. clarity. The latter part of both sonnets (the sestet) changes the mood to one of patient confidence. Created “just and right. Remember that. his blindness. and reason makes man.b. The poet places his trust in Providence. The paradox of freedom. since that would mean the “revocation” of His own “high decree” by which man was made free. is thus not attributable to God. like that of the angels. 2. God cannot use His infinite power and knowledge to prevent the errors of those who are free to choose.. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. The implication is that God gave man conscience.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%. • the coherence. 1 will count as 10% in your final assessment. Both man and the rebel angels are “authors to themselves in all. The fall of man..e.c. SAQ 3 God’s whole argument is based on the idea of freedom. in grading your paper. 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%). respectively) and with the anxiety that poetic fulfilment is late to come. the “instrument” by which to exercise his free will. 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. i. not God.” In the case of man.” man shared the perfection of the angels (“the Ethereal Powers and Spirits”) and their complete freedom of will and judgment. or reason. SAQ 2 In the first section (the octave). 3.a. Milton emphasises the geometrical. rational spirit of the Creator (he refers to Him elsewhere as “the great 86 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . is that one may choose right or wrong. the divine punishment is compensated by mercy (the sending of Jesus as mankind’s saviour). both sonnets deal with the theme of loss (the poet’s sense of the passing of time. SAA no. 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. as man’s wrong choice was not the pure result of his free will. responsible for his choices.

SAQ 5 a. 2. 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. is meant to keep alive the memory of their transgression. to be dictated by Reason. 1. SAQ 7 1. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. d. His gift of Reason to man has no justification (it is “useless and vain”). 2003 (pp. 153-163) 3. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. i. If God leaves man’s loyalty. and for him servitude in Heaven is the real hell. of human solidarity. under the guidance of Providence. as God has made him. and the image of the terrible gates. Ioan-Aurel (coord.). Satan feels God’s absolute power as a limitation to his enormous ambition. The Literature of the Beginnings. but at least they have the mutual comfort of their love. Incapable of obedience to God. e. with passive virtue. i. Their hesitant steps suggest their awareness of the difficulty of all choice. SAQ 8 God cannot be pleased with blind submission.e. A Critical History of English Literature. 141-152) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 87 . Daiches. of the responsibility that accompanies freedom. If Hell is a space of freedom. These lines suggest Satan’s formidable strength of will and the independence of his indestructible spirit. 435-449) 2. 1969 (pp. David. unless he exercises his will and reason. 2. vol. This line illustrates both his aspiration to complete independence and his ambition. 1983 (pp. then it is like Heaven for a spirit that cannot accept constraints. 3. Preda. 1.The works of John Milton Architect”). It is his will and desire that give value to things around. Editura Universităţii Suceava. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. comforting himself that he exchanged submission for sovereignty. b. who draws a firm line between the formed and the formless (chaos). London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. the intelligible and the unintelligible (the dark void). Forced to look ahead. Luminiţa Elena. 2. 4 SAQ 6 For Adam and Eve. Turcu. f. Further reading 1.e. Satan is willing to exchange the happiness of Heaven for the torments in Hell. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). English Literature and Civilisation. c. g. unless he is put in the situation of making choices.4. He wants man’s obedience to be the result of an act of free choice. The same rational spirit separates what is vital from what is “adverse to life” (the “infernal dregs”). Man is not a free creature.4.3. faith and love untested. guarded by fear-inspiring armed angels.. 2. Paradise is now a forbidden place.

3.4. 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 .1.1.4.3. 4. 4. 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. 4.2.4.2. 4.1.2 4. 4. 4. 4.2. 4.5. Gulliver. 4. 4.1. 4. 4.The Restoration and the Augustan Age UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE Unit Outline 4.5.2.7.2.2.2. 4.4. 4. 4. 4.6.4.4.1.4. “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.4.3. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator. 4.1.1.1. 4.4.1.3. 4.4. 4.5.3.4.2.1.

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

Sensational turns of situation. but they were loveless marriages and love affairs without warmth and affection. were essential for the true man of the world. fashionable manners. Gallantry. refinement and sophistication. grandiloquent declamations and sentimental exaltation. the licentiousness* and frivolity characterising Restoration comedy were accompanied by a cult for elegance. The highest achievement of this kind of baroque theatre was provided by John Dryden’s plays*. and the plays of the Restoration Wits*. and satirised the aspiration of social climbing and the ideal of virtue and respectability of the middle classes. exotic places. ridiculing their crude manners and lack of sophistication. the cynicism. Marriage and the games of love were a prevailing theme. although each in its own way and for different reasons. One of the most common types was the rake – the libertine. above all. The action was usually set in remote. and its audience was restricted to the exclusive and fashionable circles in London. lust. 4.1. betrayal and mockery were recurrent motives in the comic plots of Restoration drama. A certain coarseness of feeling. Dominant forms in Restoration drama The main kinds of drama were heroic tragedy and comedy of manners. and the characteristic theme was the conflict between love and honour. on the other. ending in Heroic tragedy the death of the hero or heroine or both and the triumph of honour. jealousy. Another dominant dramatic form during the Restoration was the comedy of manners.” reflecting the aristocratic ethos of the time. with characters conventionally distributed into fabulously valiant heroes and virtuous beautiful heroines.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Heroic tragedy* was a dramatic development from the epic poem. Restoration comedy was a mirror of the Comedy of manners environment in which it developed.2. Restoration comedies dealt primarily with sexual intrigue and the pursuit of pleasure – including the pleasure of cynical manipulation of others. both of them highly conventional forms. or in the survival of love over the criminal machinations of the villains. The range of character types in Restoration comedy was very diverse. adultery. or Court Wits. reflected the hedonism* and promiscuity encouraged at court by Charles II himself (nicknamed “the Merry Monarch” for his pleasure-loving way of life). Conquest and seduction. wit*. and. on the one hand. sumptuous costumes. magnificent settings. Restoration comedy and its character types Restoration comedy was “class drama. inflated conception of heroism – these were the ingredients of a dramatic genre whose spirit was in sharp contrast with the unheroic age of the Restoration.1. an artificial. The Puritan rigidity and austerity of the former period were repudiated. It made fun of the people from the countryside. The conception of character in Restoration comedy was indebted to the Renaissance comedy of humours*. and absolute villains. of incredible cruelty and perfidy.3. the 90 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .

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

elegance. The Renaissance comedy of humours inspired Restoration dramatists in their construction of dramatic character. a master of satirical comedy of manners Among the most representative authors of comedies during the Restoration period there were George Etherege*.1. extravagant stage settings and highly rhetorical language. T F 9. frivolity. The middle classes and their moral code found a mirror in the comedy of the Restoration. T F 7. T F 5. 4. Heroic tragedy reflected the realities and spirit of the Restoration Age. by doing the exercise that follows. The baroque character of Restoration heroic tragedy resided in its sensational plot. and satirised clumsy manners and dull simplicity. refinement and sophistication.1. who resorts to all kinds of devices to avoid 92 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . William Wycherley* and John Dryden*. It displays typical Restoration characters. Restoration theatre introduced professional women actors in performances. T F 6. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). The main themes of heroic tragedy were seduction and the games of love.1. Restoration comedy praised wit. The true master of Restoration comedy of manners was William Congreve (1679-1723). T F 2. at the end of the unit.4. hedonism and amorality at Court.3. simple action. The Restoration rake as a typical character in comedy was representative for the atmosphere of licentiousness. Restoration comedy built its plot on a single. T F 3. His satirical play Love for Love (1695) deals with the contrast between public reputation and private behaviour. If any of them should turn out to be wrong. William Congreve. read again subchapters 4. to 4. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Read the statements below and identify five true ones.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 1 Let us revise some aspects concerning the Restoration drama. T F 8.1. such as the impoverished gallant. 1. T F 4.

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

they seem to be playing a game. read again subchapter 4. under the appearance of frivolity. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in Act IV. What is the idea of marriage that her conditions suggest? Answer in the space below. Mirabell is a reformed rake. as well as the indicated fragment. However.4. at the end of the unit. If there should be significant differences. In a witty dialogue. 94 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . who is sincerely in love with Millamant and wishes to marry her. they establish and agree on the terms of a "contract. their agreement has serious implications.. but she accepts Mirabell's marriage proposal on certain conditions. Read Text 4.1.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 2 In Congreve's play The Way of the World." Presenting their expectations from each other in a half-joking way.1. in no more than 15 lines / 150 words. which presents Millamant's demands. Millamant is also in love..

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.2. such as the superiority of the Ancients over the Moderns. or of the heroic couplet* over blank verse*. other great writers who were influenced by Neoclassicism or defended its doctrine were Jonathan Swift*. elegance. and Alexander Pope* in the 18 th . and he laid the foundations of modern literary criticism. Pope presents the basic concepts and theses of this literary orientation in a poetic form of remarkable elegance and clarity. Alexander Pope brought to perfection Dryden’s achievements in poetic style and technique. in which he systematises his Neoclassic view on literary art. Joseph Addison*. John Dryden (1631-1700) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 95 .2. 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*. John Dryden illustrated with masterpieces all contemporary literary genres. balance. but it represents the quintessence of the Augustan literary ideal. 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. and propriety would favour the spirit of social unity and order and would contribute to the protection of the achievements of civilisation. in a series of essays and prefaces where he discussed matters of literary composition and taste and defended his own literary practice. 4. and harmony extended beyond literature. In it. Augustan England believed that a cultural idea of balance. Oliver Goldsmith* and Samuel Johnson*. His work doesn’t equal in variety that of his predecessor and master. of the elegant French classical drama over English Renaissance drama.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4.1. His main critical work is An Essay on Dramatic Poesy (1668). In both cases. English literary Neoclassicism* The Neoclassic aspiration for order. a society exhausted by civil wars was expressing its need for stability and moderation. The excellence of their literary work and the elegance and force of their critical arguments made them central figures of the Augustan Age. His didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711) is the most outstanding literary manifesto of English Neoclassicism. Besides Dryden and Pope.

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

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

Literature was supposed to delight but also to instruct – to offer not only aesthetic pleasure. precision and clarity. of quick accumulation of information. The periodical essay Although the normative poetics of Neoclassicism had in view mainly poetry and drama. too. “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The Neoclassic concern with standards of good writing must be seen in connection with an important feature of Augustan literature: its integration with social life. of the belief in progress an in man’s perfectibility. The writer's art was a form of social communication. It must not be forgotten that this was the age of the Enlightenment*. yet everything is extraordinary” (Thomas Sprat*).5. Neoclassicism cultivated an ideal of style characterised in the first place by intellectual clarity and expressive restraint. and he was not supposed to withdraw in an ivory tower. refinement with wisdom. The Augustan ideal of style The suitable doctrine for the Age of Reason.” Augustan wit 4. affectation were rejected. “grace and strength united. the language of prose aimed more and more at simplicity. and which illustrated most eloquently the didactic impulse of all Augustan literature.2. its effects were considerable on prose.2. eloquence with restraint. A more straightforward style in prose was an imperative in an age so much concerned with education of mentalities. It displayed flexibility skilfully controlled. where nothing seems to be studied. and the measure of the writer’s skill was his ability to convey an impression of “natural easiness and unaffected grace. or. and of the increase and diversification of the reading public. but also moral edification and standards of good judgment and behaviour. of critical debate in every field. 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. The periodical essay is the Augustan prose genre which contributed immensely to the forging of a modern prose style.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. This ideal of style is best summed up by the Augustan notion of wit. as Oliver Goldsmith defined it. manners and taste.4.3. but to be a functional part of the community. unnecessary ornament. In the context of general progress. with the cultivation of men’s best virtues through polite learning*. Ostentation. 98 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Wit described a style which combined elegance with profundity. 4.

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

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

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

and write them in the indicated spaces below. 8. 1.3. 6. a cultivated mind and superior understanding. 3. combining the external marks of social decency (pleasant conversation.The Restoration and the Augustan Age The gentleman represented an ideal of social behaviour. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. cheerful disposition. at the end of the unit. Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729) 102 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . it is clear that Addison promotes certain virtues. 4. 2. read again subchapter 4. the talent of never offending the others) with such qualities as moral and physical courage. 7. common sense. 5. which are important for the Enlightenment ideal of social integration. If there should be major discrepancies. Identify at least eight such features.1. SAQ 5 From the description of the members of the Spectator’s Club. more carefully.

Bayes*.1. at the advice of Achitophel* (cf. and satire became their formidable weapon. whose claim to the throne was justified by his Protestant religion. 4. 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 . are mingled: the evil conspirator. a merciless attack on literary pedantry and dulness. 1743). could not entirely remove or hide its tensions. turning it into an allegory of contemporary political struggles. from political and social life. and affectation were felt as diseases which threatened to weaken the force. selfishness. king David. The perfection of Dryden’s diction and his masterful use of the sketches heroic couplet* combine with his brilliant of character. Charles’s brother and heir to the throne. folly. Augustan satire The refinement and elegant surface of the Augustan Age. Political and religious dissensions. and its most outstanding representatives – Dryden. The writers’ sense of mission turned them into guardians of the enlightened values of their time.2. hypocrisy. Pope. It tells the biblical story of Absalom’s rebellion against his father.4.4. 4. The best achieved portrait is that of Achitophel / the Earl of Shaftesbury. appears also as a stormy spirit. the Duke of Monmouth. struggle for power and profit. to religious debates and literary practices. contradictions and dark aspects. Alexander Pope Satirical attacks on literary mediocrity and incompetence were frequent in an age so preoccupied with standards of correctness and excellence. Swift – aimed it at a variety of targets. greed. and Achitophel is the first Earl of Shaftesbury. admiration and condemnation. with implications concerning the whole of Augustan civilisation. The Augustan Age is the great age of satire in English literature.4. The biblical characters represent English political figures: King David is Charles II. a passionate. the instigator of the opposition to Catholic James Stuart. stability and order of a remarkable civilisation. its cult of reason and common sense. in which Dryden’s praise and criticism. genuinely gifted for leadership. Absalom is the latter’s illegitimate son. intrigues. The hero of this mock-heroic epic* is Mr. Perhaps the greatest Augustan satire on the world of letters is Alexander Pope’s The Dunciad* (1728. 15-18). brave and fearless man. urbanity and refinement made it a sophisticated instrument of correction. Augustan satire defended the values of civilisation in a civilised way: elegance. disloyal and excessively ambitious. Samuel. John Dryden A remarkable example of political satire is John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel (1681-1682).The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. often touched by ironic humour.

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

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

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

In the Houyhnhnms. and he realises how far man is from moral perfection. etc.).6.5. he contemplates with shame and despair all the imperfections of the human race. the highest offices in the state are obtained by those who know how to entertain the king best. means de-humanisation. Political corruption is institutionalised (for example. his real humiliation is caused by the unflattering contrast between his own race and civilisation. forgetting that man holds a middle place in the Great Chain of Being*. These comic details are satirical allusions to contemporary or recent events. from which he chooses to leave. Gulliver in Brobdingnag 4. physical size indicates allegorically features of human nature. to integrate Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 107 . with the hardest dilemma and the deepest humiliation. governed only by reason. The Yahoos and the Houyhnhnms are a double mirror for Gulliver. Gulliver is confronted. between those who wear shoes with high heels and with low heels. In the Yahoos. In spite of Gulliver’s dimensions (an allegorical representation of his complex of superiority). Dissenters and Catholics. but their universe is completely deprived of emotion and feeling.4. Gulliver’s failure to accept the mixed essence of man. vain. ambitious. the frustrated idealist After the comic-disturbing examples of unreason witnessed in his third voyage. and they constitute a miniature picture of England. The Lilliputians’ physical smallness is accompanied by moral flaws – they prove to be mean. cruel and hypocritical. Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia In the first two books of Gulliver’s Travels. with its religious controversies among Anglicans. he is actually physically vulnerable in this world. as he is in permanent danger from creatures so much larger than him. Their society is deeply divided by absurd dissensions: for example. Their non-human shape suggests that the absence of passion. In Brobdingnag.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. etc. by dancing on a rope. in his last adventure. and the utopian commonwealth of Brobdingnag. 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. its political parties – Whigs and Tories –. and his position in that strange land is highly ambiguous. The Houyhnhnms may be an allegorical embodiment of moral perfection attained through the exercise of pure reason. he sees ideal creatures. or between those who break a boiled egg at the round end – the "Big Endians" – and those who break it at the pointed end). However. The fourth voyage. jumping over or creeping under a stick. its thirst for war – the endless conflict with France.4. his vulnerability increases. ruled by an enlightened monarch. Gulliver. He is no longer certain of the essence of his own nature. issues or figures. The error of Gulliver* is that he adopts an impossible deal of perfection. of the capacity for affection.

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

however. Utopian aspects: Anti-utopian aspects Compare your answer with the one provided at the end of the unit. you need to read the fragment again. Point out both kinds of aspects in the description contained in Text 4. the Houyhnhnms’ society is perfect – a true utopia. Formulate your answer in no more than 10 lines / 100 words for each aspect.6.4.6. more carefully. from the Reader. and by mixing the desirable with the unacceptable. The careful reader will. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 109 . in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. For Gulliver.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 8 Swift’s ironic method is to mislead the reader by giving the appearance of rationality to the absurd. and to revise subchapter 4. If there should be major differences. find anti-utopian elements in it.

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

coffee houses: since the 1650s. and the Glossary in Unit 2. greatly concerned with appearances. in the 2nd Book of Kings (verses 15-18). affectation: a manner of speech. his craftsmanship. or escort. profession or interest. art: in the Neoclassic doctrine.1. Augustan: see Augustan Age in the Glossary in Unit 1. or human skill (as contrasted to the work of Nature). the acquired competence of the writer. Anarch: a personification of anarchy. “Will’s Coffee House. They were usually frequented by people of the same social rank. baroque: see again subchapter 2. achieved by training and practice. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. acquiring quickly the status of real “institutions” of opinion. Dulness as “Great Anarch” is the ruler of spiritual chaos. dress or behaviour which is not natural. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1.1. Art may generally refer to the work of man. they were convenient places for socialising and for the dissemination of news.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. In her empire of darkness and confusion.” where Dryden would come regularly. which designated a fashionable. 111 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . gathered people of the literary profession or interested in literary matters. it may also refer to a woman’s lover. political or religious orientation. but is intended to impress others. In Pope’s satire. all the acquisitions of the human spirit become meaningless. admirer. For instance. well-dressed man. beaux: plural of beau (“handsome” in French).

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

1. founder of literary journalism. Dryden. polished). Tatler: a “tattler” is a person who gossips. Neoclassicism: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Nicolas (1636-1711): outstanding French poet and critic. this phrase suggests the lack of inspiration. i. Pope’s satire warns thus about the dangers of lowering literary standards. especially the main landowner in a village. Restoration Wits: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. He excelled in all literary genres of his time. polite learning: the knowledge acquired through classical education (polite: refined.4.e. Marriage à la Mode (1672) distinguishes itself by its brilliant wit combats and effective social satire. 113 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . poetics: the system of principles and conventions which govern a certain literary form. and topos = place).The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • cosmic harmony and order manifested in the appearances of this world. squire: a country gentleman. essays and dramatic works.3 in Unit 1) and of comedies of manners. of imagination and originality. Boileau. sprout up: to begin to grow or develop. sentimental comedy see again subchapter 1. or who chats or talks idly. Joseph (1672-1719): representative of English literary Neoclassicisn. wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. he translated from ancient authors. whose poem L’art poétique (1674) established the canons of taste and the standards of literary judgement for European Neoclassicism. He was equally successful as an author of heroic dramas (see again subchapter 1. in which he outlines the features of an ideal. uncreated word: with reference to the literary world. Gallery of personalities • • • Addison. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. perfect society (literally: “no place. author of poems.” utopia: a genre in fiction whose name comes from Sir Thomas More’s work Utopia (1516).” from Greek u = not. and he was the pioneer of modern English literary criticism. the conception about literature and the creative act of a certain literary school or writer. and he contributed significantly to the dissemination of the values of the Enlightenment in England. and sentimental novel in subchapter 5. making literature “dull. He established the periodical essay as a literary genre. for the notion of sentimentalism.3 in Unit 5. Among the latter. John (1637-1700): one of the most outstanding figures of the Restoration and the Augustan Age. or literature in general. elegant.4.4 in Unit 1. of taste or skill.

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

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

decency and civility are certainly desiderata of any civilisation. The tendency to idleness. The individual is of no importance. and the hierarchy of their society is based on racial discrimination (“inferior” Houyhnhnms will fatally be servants). 1983 (pp. conflict and self-interest. Daiches. only the species counts. Anti-utopian aspects: the absolutisation of reason. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. 2003 (pp.). Ioan-Aurel (coord. so the satirist is merciless in his denouncing human flaws. 537-550) 2. the “unnatural appetite” for things whose value doesn’t justify the effort and energy spent in their acquisition and preservation. deprives their thinking of flexibility and nuance. which are the literary equivalent of a man’s “slovenly butchering. Macsiniuc.” the subtlety of his accusations. the rulers’ habit of surrounding themselves by favourites whose role is to flatter and to encourage them in their abuses. the generalises extension of friendship and benevolence. David. The civilised art of satire is opposed to the coarseness and brutality of personal attack and insult. Womankind’s lustfulness and inclination to coquetry.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Just as the executioner will implacably carry out the capital punishment. In the absence of affective attachment. the jealousy (envy) and the aggressiveness towards one’s fellows. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. English Literature and Civilisation. which is meant only for procreation. ultimately of imagination. The irrational greed and avarice. vol. A Critical History of English Literature. Editura Universităţii Suceava. SAQ 8 Utopian aspects: The cultivation and exercise of reason. civility and friendship become a cold and superficial form of social relationship. which breeds imaginary ills. the exclusion of opinion. 1969 (pp. The Novel in Its Beginnings. the silly behaviour of women determined to draw attention to themselves. which makes social progress inconceivable. The incapacity of choosing a ruler according to real merit. and the equal education of males and females was a progressive Enlightenment ideal. The Houyhnhms are not divided by quarrels. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Preda. 180-187) 3. the education in the spirit of moderation and industry. 4. The spirit of competition. the ability of the worst to set themselves as leaders. 5.” SAQ 7 1. The tyranny of reason also rules out affection and emotion: they have no particular feelings for their own offspring. the “fineness. 2. Further reading 1. and no personal choice in the matter of marriage.. Cornelia. 3.33-66) 116 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). The art of the accomplished satirist consists in the elegance. The English Eighteenth Century. Both of them need skill – or “art” – to do this in a satisfactory way. They practice population control.

2. 5.2. 5.3.2.2.4.1.1. 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 . 5.1.7.4.2.2. 5.2. 5. 5.3.4.1. 5.2.4.2.4. 5. 5.1.2. 5.4. 5. 5.2. 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.5. 5.3.6.2.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel UNIT 5 THE AGE OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT: THE RISE OF THE NOVEL Unit Outline 5 5.3. 5.2.1. 5. 5. 5.1.3. 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. 5.3.4. 5.3.3.8. 5.6. 5.4.4.3.1.4.5.5. 5. 5. 5.3.

Novel and romance in the 18th century The dominance of female readership explains the enduring popularity. Women’s education was beginning to be encouraged. 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. more inclusive reading public. and whose protagonists were of noble stock. 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. and there is a connection between. natural rights. and generally about women. emancipation and progress received unprecedented prominence and were vital for the self-assertion of the new class. Background and main concerns The novel’s emergence is commonly associated with the aspiration of the middle classes to overcome cultural marginality. tolerance. the rise of the middle classes. Not only were women the most numerous “consumers” of novels. Romances were long narratives combining heroic adventure and passionate love. This new literary form embodied the democratic and revolutionary impulse of a century in which the issues of individual liberty.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify. whose action was often set in remote.1.1. and their involvement with literary life was increasing. The late 17 th century had seen a flourishing of this kind of fiction. in various aspects of the novels discussed in this unit. The general growth of literacy* in the 18 th century led to the rise of a new. in the early years of the 18 th century. a certain tendency to women’s emancipation. mostly imitations of French models. 5. whose vast majority was middle-class. but there was a considerable amount of novels written by women. confined to the 118 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Such tales gratified the fantasies of a class of readers who were still barred from public self-assertion. and the development of the novel. of a genre which became the main rival of the novel: the romance. A significant part of this new reading public consisted in women. exotic settings.1.

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

and public/social norms and conventions.2. Women were … 3.1. SAQ 1 Complete the sentences below. on the other. 120 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel offers imaginative versions of the reconciliation of these two tendencies. Two or three lines (20-30 words) should be enough for each completion. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … 5. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. 1. on the one hand. If there should be major differences. … 4. Each full statement should describe a general aspect concerning the rise of the novel as a genre in the 18th century. by centering its interest on the relationship between the individual and his/her social environment. and 5. read again subchapters 5. The tensions and conflicts between private/individual convictions and inclinations. 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.1. constitute the foundation of all novelistic plots in the 18 th century.1. The rise of the middle classes … 2. at the end of the unit.

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

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

They are pragmatic. This aspect in Defoe’s novels points to his Puritan background.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. on his fiction. and both of them focus on the individual in his/her struggle of securing a legitimate position in the social structure. dynamic and versatile.2. Richardson focuses on the inner world of thought and feeling. of such non-fictional kinds of writing as the spiritual autobiography or didactic religious treatises. in the next years. several adventure novels. They share a middle class. the constant striving towards accuracy of description. but also on the Continent. to the influence. Their rise to social respectability and wealth. cast in a picaresque form. Its tremendous success encouraged Defoe to produce. on the individual’s striving towards some form of personal achievement. and tracing the protagonists’ struggles to achieve material prosperity as a condition of a stable social position. Puritan* background. on the movements of consciousness and the emotional response to moral problems. His heroes are remarkable in their vitality. Defoe and Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Each of these two novelists had an essential contribution to the rise of the novel. 5. and their adventures show the individual victorious over circumstances and environment (physical or social). the power to hold attention and keep curiosity awake. is invariably accompanied by moral reformation. They were all stories of success. Both Defoe and Richardson display in their narratives a remarkable faithfulness to detail. their social insertion. Both of them enjoyed enormous popularity not only in England. in actions. Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Defoe’s career as a novelist started with his masterpiece. when the writer was almost sixty. Mariner. Features of Defoe’s heroes Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 123 .2. This confers vividness to their narratives.1. published in 1719. resourcefulness and capacity for adjustment and survival. The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York. They differ in the objects of their “realistic” approach: whereas Defoe’s interest is invested in the external world of fact. in circumstantial details. Their novels are the literary reflection of the spirit of individualism that characterised the age. establishing it as the most popular literary genre in the 18th century.

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

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. and 5. the motif of the island acquires symbolic Robinson’s island dimensions. Robinson comes to see his solitude rather as a spiritual and moral shelter.3. Robinson perceives his exile from the world as a terrible punishment for his transgression of his father’s word.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. Isolation is no longer a misfortune. tracing Robinson’s progress from sin (his disobedience of his father). It may also be read as a spiritual autobiography in the Puritan tradition. making sure you understand the meaning of the phrase “honest cheat. as an allegory of the ecological development of history.1.” 5. the awareness of his sinfulness and the sincere desire for repentance. It corresponds to the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 125 . as a political or economic utopia.2. but the proper condition for the examination of consciousness.. and finally to his conviction of God’s benevolent design. Gradually. as one of the great myths of individualism of Western civilisation. If it should differ considerably. In this light.2. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. to the awakening of religious conscience. read again subchapters 5.2.2. embodying elements of contemporary social philosophy and economic theory. as his life becomes more secure and his trust in Providence increases. In his initial struggle with despair.

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

127 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .4 once more and do the exercise again. The “journalistic” style of Defoe’s fiction is consonant with an ideal of prose style characterised by plainness. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. In his aspiration to create an effect of reality in his narrative. 1. he paid little attention to matters of form. clear language. 4. with unmatched vividness. in the Reader from the point of view of its style.2. 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. The richness of concrete detail. solid world.2. His linear. His simple. concreteness. the frequent enumerations and inventories. whose reality is difficult to doubt. on a separate sheet. Defoe’s style The world of Defoe’s novels is the world of common fact and action. of familiar detail.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. 2. Robinson Crusoe is a gripping narrative. He convinced readers of the truthfulness of his narrative by evoking. containing. the accumulation of circumstantial detail create a strong sense of a palpable. His fiction has the remarkable power to evoke a tangible reality. episodic plots imitate the episodic quality of life itself. arising from the complication of a plot centering not on episodic adventure. It was with Richardson that “the sense of life” conveyed by the narrative was completed by a sense of form.4. the promise of symbolic meanings. lack of unnecessary ornamentation. SAQ 5 Analyse Text 5. rendered in a simple. but on the complexity of character and human relationship. at the end of the unit. at the same time. which. read the fragment and subchapter 5. easy and eminently factual style made his writings accessible to a large audience. If your list contains none of the features mentioned there. Identify in it at least four features of Defoe’s characteristic narrative style and write them in the space provided below.2. The latter owes greatly to Defoe’s experience as a journalist. 3. which draws much of its force from Defoe’s peculiar narrative manner and style. in turn benefited from his innate gift for telling stories. clarity. Defoe’s novels imposed a model of style that contributed considerably to the “democratisation” of literature. the most common objects and actions in their particularity.

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

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

as a servant.2. read again attentively subchapters 5.”? Answer in the space left below. what are the implications of her exclamation: “My soul is of equal importance with the soul of a princess. to obey Mr. Psychological realism and the epistolary technique What makes Richardson a real innovator is the credibility with which he renders the heroine’s inner conflicts.8.6. B_ When the latter acts openly as her oppressor. at the end of the unit.e. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. it is easier for her to stand his abuses. her contradictory impulses and unconscious motivations. 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. Pamela struggles from the start between fright and fascination. social standing] I am but upon a foot with the meanest slave. 5. Her initial innocent regard for her master’s benevolence turns gradually into the apprehension of danger. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If there should be significant differences. but her letters betray her growing affection for her master.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 6 Considering the heroine’s dilemma in the novel.2.2. 130 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and 5. though in quality [i. but his moments of kindness confuse her and make her feel vulnerable.7. Her conscience is divided between her loyalty to the moral principles inculcated by her parents and her social duty. between hate and admiration.

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

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

Affectation arising from hypocrisy is more efficiently comic. Affectation arising from vanity presupposes the concealment of vice under an appearance of virtue. alluding thus to the older genre. Fielding gives his definition of a comic romance and discusses the nature and the source of the comic (“the Ridiculous”). indeed “in imitation of the manner of Cervantes. This removes all obstacles in the way of Joseph and Fanny’s marriage. Fielding likes to play with genres. 1. or the pattern of the adventurous journey. T F 4. at the end of the unit. Fielding resorts to the burlesque both in the creation of his characters and in diction. The action of a comic romance is more extended and comprehensive than that of a comedy. Mr. whom they had met during their journey. The comic writer gives pleasure by strictly imitating nature. for true or false) for each of them. in the spirit of comedy.” Fielding himself speaks of his work as a comic romance. which closes the plot. Natural imperfections are a source of the Ridiculous for the comic writer. Circle the appropriate letter (T or F. The novel as comic romance Like his invoked literary master. T F 5. If you should fail to identify the sentences correctly as true or false.3. carefully. T F 7. Cervantes. like the motif of love fulfilled against all obstacles. The burlesque in writing and the caricatura in painting presuppose distortion and exaggeration. Read Text 5. is an ingredient of romantic plots.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. SAQ 8 In the Preface to Joseph Andrews. Fielding exploits such motifs in a comic or burlesque key. 5. T F 6. For instance. which turns out to be gentle*. but rooting his action in contemporaneity and the ordinary.5. the spectacular reversal of Joseph’s status. T F 3. very carefully and identify which of the statements below are true and which are false. Both comedy and comic romance introduce characters of low social rank and inferior manners. to be both serious and ironic about their conventions. Wilson. T F 2.2. T F 8. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 133 . read the text once more. T F Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. while Fanny and Pamela are revealed to be sisters.

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

drawing short comparisons. defining it in relation with the respectable genres of the epic and drama.5. 1. Such reflections show his Neoclassic emphasis on discipline and craftsmanship as essential for successful creation.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.. reveals his Augustan view of the writer’s province. like many Augustan writers. incorporated in the substance of his works. He had a solid classical education and a strong sense of literary tradition. of evoking his characters’ social position and moral nature through their language. and he tried to give full legitimacy to the novel. His narrative style is eminently Augustan: articulate and refined. combining elegant seriousness with wit and irony. 3.” His exploration of the diversity of Human Nature. 5. 2. preoccupied with the reformation of manners. If they should differ substantially. 5. At the same time. Fielding’s Augustanism* Of all 18th century novelists. 5. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 135 . of no more than 3 lines / 30 words each.. he had the exceptional gift of individualizing his characters through speech.3. and 5.3.2. His commentaries and reflections on his own art.8. unaffected.2. provide the first theory of the novel.4. through its moral and temperamental types.. SAQ 9 Mention at least three features of Fielding’s art of the novel which distinguish him from Defoe and Richardson.2. and he believes. in the superior corrective efficiency of comedy and its devices. at the end of the unit. He is a moralist.3. read again subchapters 5. Fielding is the most “Augustan.. Explain them. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.4.

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

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

Read this short chapter (Text 5. SAQ 10 In Vol. Ch. 138 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . I. read again subchapter 5. at the end of the unit.4. Write the answer in the space left below.3. which enables man to keep a healthy spirit and to get around the evils of life by joking about them. It is a combination of wisdom and mirth*. V.. in the Reader) attentively and explain why Tristram’s selfdescription as a “small HERO” suggests a tragi-comic vision of life.6. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Sterne introduces the theme of Fortune – a theme which he will develop with a characteristic mixture of sentimental pathos and comic wit. restricting it to 12 lines / 120 words.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel take a lightly ironic distance from suffering. If the difference is considerable. in the Glossary to Unit 2. see again the fall of princes. as well as the fragment from the Reader. To remember the features of the tragic hero.

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

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

. The fragment is practically about the writing of the novel. and 5. at the end of the unit. Henry William Bunbury: Uncle Toby and Trim reviving a scene of war on the bowling green (1773) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 141 . Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Read the text and find three reasons for Tristram’s praise of digressions. In this way.4. 1. 3. If they differ significantly.5.7.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 11 Text 5. the author reveals to the reader one aspect of his conception of writing. which he discusses in the very text of the work. in the Reader illustrates the metafictional dimension of Sterne’s novel. go again through subchapters 5. the narrator stops and considers his eccentric way of telling it. 2. and read the fragment attentively once more.4. using no more than 3 lines / 30 words for each of them.6. Write them in the spaces indicated below. Instead of continuing the story.

readers along the ages have been able to find a wealth of symbolic meanings and a story of archetypal significance. but his interest in the psychological complexity of the individual is completed by a remarkable sensitivity to social aspects. Henry Fielding. this genre has enjoyed unrivalled popularity. Samuel Richardson.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. Richardson takes the novel in the direction of the minute analysis of emotion and feeling. and Laurence Sterne. Sterne. We have only concentrated on one novel for each writer. The absence of norms and models made it an exceptionally flexible and inclusive form. tests the possibilities and limitations of the newly-born literary genre in an experimental. This is reflected in the wide diversity of directions in which the novel developed in the 18th century. At the beginning of the 18th century. in a work so committed to the matterof-fact. and with Robinson Crusoe the middle class hero is imposed on the literary scene. in his novels of manners. Fielding. to the palpable reality of common objects and actions. Defoe illustrates best the new narrative realism that emerged in fiction. selected as an illustration of the most characteristic features of his art. who shares with Fielding the attraction to comedy and parody. Lastly. However. You have formed an idea of this diversity from the chapters of this unit. completely ignored by Augustan poetics. self-conscious novel that makes him highly modern. 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. Since its settlement on the literary scene. which has dealt with four major novelists of this age: Daniel Defoe. on the other hand. Their works illustrate various aspects and tendencies in the evolution of the genre. the novel was a minor form. 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 .

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

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

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

Women were … a consistent part of the novel’s reading public. 6. on contemporary social reality and on the experience of the common individual.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. inventiveness. 3. patience. but she lives with the deep conviction that in the spiritual order of a Christian world. concreteness. resilience. but this is a way of accomplishing more efficiently his honest intention of conveying a moral message. industriousness. The rise of the middle classes … coincides with the emergence of the novel as a literary genre. 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. 4. He thus “cheats” the reader with the illusion of truth. rationality. all souls are equal. she may be deprived of the privilege of class and fortune. SAQ 2 1. 2. plainness. She will accept humbly her social inferiority. 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. and by the form of autobiographical record. immediacy. … novels focused on the ordinary and the familiar aspects of life. optimism. SAQ 3 Defoe’s own phrase refers to the purpose of his novels: to entertain and to instruct. 4. He delights the reader with an extraordinary adventure and a story of success. vividness. 5. 3. pragmatism. 5. which is given an air of authenticity by the meticulous. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. SAQ 5 factuality. realistic account. SAQ 4 Tenacity. 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. sharp sense of observation. 2. In the social order. 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 . the capacity for learning from mistakes.

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

2003 (pp. 179-195. Cornelia. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. 731-736) 3. 37-42. 234-238) 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 76-80) 2. 43-46. Walter. 701-704. vol. 712-718. 217-231. David. Daiches. 143-163. The English Novel. 116127. 1969 (pp.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Further reading 1. Macsiniuc. Penguin Books Limited. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 53-59. 598-602.3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). The English Eighteenth Century: The Novel in Its Beginnings. Allen. 1991 (pp. A Critical History of English Literature.

6. 6. 6.1.5.3. 6. 6. 6.3.1.7.2.2. 6. 6.3.3.4.2. 6.2.3. 6.4.1.4.English pre-Romantic poetry UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY Unit Outline 6 6.3.2. 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. 6.4. The Seasons William Cowper.1. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.1. 6. 6.6. 6. 6. 6. 6.4.4.1.4. 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 .2. 6.2.1.2. the Romantic visionary The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Knowledge in the world of Experience The double vision in Blake’s Songs Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.2.4.4.4.1.

however. the cult of Reason favoured an attitude of humanitarianism and social benevolence. with its emphasis on order. The interest in individual psychology. Pope. was eminently the Age of Reason. One trend in the 18th century poetry of meditation was the preference for the expression of melancholy and dark thoughts.g. the century of the Enlightenment was not without paradoxes and contradictions. which in turn favoured the emergence of the cult of Feeling. and the sensibility that it cultivated favoured the rise of the Gothic novel. The sentimental novel* (e. which became the vehicle for the expression of private feeling and assumed a personal voice. discipline. the century of the Enlightenment*. Samuel Richardson) is one manifestation of this tendency. Swift.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. and Fielding). and cultivated its public relevance. and for night as a setting. elegance and decorum*. Literature was called to deal with matters of public interest. The concern with personal. For instance. This new poetic trend ran counter to the optimistic confidence of the Age of Reason. Addison. to bring the significant aspects of human life and behaviour into the light of public attention. as is proved by the works of the great Augustan writers (Steele. Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The eighteenth century. whose literary-artistic expression was the Neoclassical doctrine.1. but also in a new kind of meditative poetry. subjective experience is displayed not only in fiction. Like any modern age. led to an increasing attention to emotional response. harmony. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling 150 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . as well as the preoccupation of 18th century analytic thought with the workings of the human mind. The optimism and pragmatism of a rational age which believed in progress were reflected in literature as well. Neoclassicism*. regarded art as the product of civilisation.

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

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

The great novelists (e. 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.g. towards the highest achievement of man’s Reason: civilisation itself. William Blake would call the heroic couplet* the “great cage” of Augustan poetry. busy life of the city with moral confusion. There was a growing suspicion that civilisation may have a corrupting effect on man’s innate goodness. the state of nature began to be idealised. The sentimental opposition between town and country was to become a convention in 18 th century literature. In the latter part of the century. Under the influence of Jean Jacques Rousseau*. and the emergence of a distinct poetic attitude towards nature. The pre. patriarchal society in which men could enjoy fully their natural right to freedom. characteristic of the Enlightenment. sometimes within the context of Augustan conventions. Elements of a pre-Romantic sensibility can be found all along the century. such as the song and the ballad.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. the new feeling for nature – these were features indicating that literary taste was changing. Samuel Taylor Coleridge). the interest in the local and national past. the inspiration from folk myths and legends. In the following subchapters. valued for their simplicity and directness by the first Romantics (William Wordsworth. an interest developed in popular forms of poetry.Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The transition from the Augustan to the Romantic age was slow and long. and the 18 th century abounded in optimistic utopias about an idyllic. A return to blank verse – for which Shakespeare and Milton were the great models – allowed greater flexibility of expression. The emphasis on sentimental response. but also literary forms. The return to blank verse 6.2. Henry Fielding) would often associate the turbulent. and indeed the tendency along the century was to abandon it for poetic forms that allowed more freedom. the interest in rural life and its contrast with civilisation. and the simplicity of country life with moral virtue.1. The rural universe in 18th century poetry The emerging Age of Sensibility oriented the critical spirit. This change in taste concerned not only themes and subjects. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 153 .3. Towards the end of the century.

English pre-Romantic poetry

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

6.2.3. The realistic approach: George Crabbe
Goldsmith’s idealisation of rural life received a sharply realistic reply from a poet who also continues the Augustan tradition: George Crabbe (1754-1832). His poem in rhymed couplets The Village (1783) is an attack on those poetic conventions which created the illusion of the innocence and happiness of country life. Crabbe’s medical practice afforded him a first hand observation of the rural world, and the sentimental cult of its idyllic charm had little to do with the realities that he encountered. His poem aims to paint village life “as Truth will paint it and as bards will not”. Instead of the cheerful ease, the innocent pleasures and the rewarding toil described in Goldsmith’s Deserted Village,
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Illustration to (1905 edition)

The Village

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

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

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

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

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

and he displayed the Augustan taste for stylistic refinement.3. at the end of the unit.2.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 4 Read Text 6. in popular superstitions and the supernatural. from the third part. How does the Philosophic Melancholy influence the poet? Answer below. which the poet calls “Philosophic Melancholy” (remember Milton’s Il Penseroso*. He preferred the classical form of the ode*. living in retirement from the city. and his feeling for Nature is that of a pre-Romantic. One of Thomson’s great admirers was William Collins (17211759). but his subjects anticipate the Romantic sensibility.. more carefully. in which he captures with precision and delicacy the crepuscular atmosphere. Passages of moral and political commentary. Like Thomson and Collins. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 159 . unrhymed stanzas. which actually inspired Thomson). William Cowper. the poem The Task (1785) by William Cowper (1731-1800) reflects a similar attraction to the theme of nature. religious meditations and character sketches accompany Cowper’s celebration of rural domestic happiness and communion with nature. The Task Much closer in time to the beginning of the Romantic Age.3. but his blank verse poem has a much more personal tone. If there should be major differences. social satire. The Task has actually been described as a spiritual autobiography. which represents a fragment from Thomson’s The Seasons – more exactly. He was interested in the mediaeval past. Cowper displays an Augustan concern for elegance and refinement in expression. in which a sensitive and thoughtful Christian. “Autumn. records his observations and reflections. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. with its short. whose work brings into harmony the various tendencies in 18th century poetry. William Collins 6. read text C again.” Autumnal nature favours a contemplative-meditative mood. He reaches perfection in his famous Ode to Evening (1746). in a paragraph of no more than 6 lines / 60 words.

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

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

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

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

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

at the end of the unit. in the Reader.5. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 165 . If there should be a significant difference between them. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. which reproduces Blake’s poem The Lamb. 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. in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. Focus on the way in which the child imagines the creator of the lamb.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 7 Read Text 6. and in which he represents to himself its “making.” Answer in the space below.

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

but also if this creator is also that of the gentle lamb. Quote the respective words or line(s) and give your comment in the space below. This suggests that the world of Experience is more opaque and uncertain. The counterpart of The Lamb in Songs of Experience is The Tyger* and this pair of poems illustrates very well the contrastive vision in Blake’s work. provoking more anxiety than certainty. innocent question (“Little Lamb. at the end of the unit.e.6.4. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. the event of a child’s birth becomes the symbol of the fall into the world of Experience. The two stanzas of The Lamb contain the child’s simple. The implication is that knowledge in the state of Experience is always incomplete and fragmentary. Read this poem – Text 6. in a paragraph of 10 lines / 100 words at the most. dangerous tiger. who made thee [i. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. while The Tyger consists only in an accumulation of questions. by ambiguity and even obscurity. in the Reader – and find out in its lines suggestions for at least one aspect which defines this “dangerous” world. with no explicit answer. in Songs of Experience.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 167 . SAQ 8 In Blake’s poem Infant Sorrow.6. and the rhythms of the poems are also more difficult. Knowledge in the world of Experience The clarity and directness of Songs of Innocence is replaced. you]?) and his own answer. If it should differ in major respects. The speaker in the latter poem wonders not only who created the “fearful symmetry” of the powerful.

in Blake’s view: “Attraction and Repulsion. which are thus strengthening their own power. The two poems entitled Holy Thursday* deal with the hypocrisy of the church. was seen by Blake as an instrument by which the church kept men in a state of obedience. since those are “babes reduced to misery. In the poem of Innocence.” Such corresponding poems illustrate the fact that Innocence and Experience are not necessarily to be associated with ages in man’s life. The former is represented in Blake’s work (the Prophetic Books included) as an “angry” God. seeing it as an instrument of oppression and a source of corruption. a double awareness of his own innocence and of the hypocritical and cruel world around him. with its “mysteries”*. and His Priest. but also complementary aspects of man’s imagination. in fact. imposing constraints and inflicting punishment. which allows the rich and powerful of this world to ease their conscience and “buy” Heaven by occasional and festive acts of charity. bearing even the same titles. like that of Hell as a punishment for sin. 168 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Blake made in fact a distinction between the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament. The church. “contrary states of the human soul. but with ways of seeing and feeling. Reason and Energy*. and King” “make up a Heaven of our misery. in Blake’s view. in Songs of Experience. but he seems to be fully aware of his condition in an unjust world. for keeping man at a distance from God. He sees nothing “holy” in the beautiful picture. This is the God of the world of Experience. the spectator to the same scene has a quite different vision. The double vision in Blake’s Songs Several other poems in Songs of Experience have a counterpart in Songs of Experience. compared with “flowers” and “Thames’ waters. One of the targets of Blake’s critical attacks is the Church. tyrannical figure. and he is also a child. A deeply religious person.” Blake’s Songs suggest that Innocence and Experience are not only inevitable stages in human growth. as Blake indicated in the subtitle. There is a Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience as well.7.4.” The angry speaker protests against the duplicity of a society that feeds its poor “with cold and usurous* hand. was responsible. They reveal. indeed. served by the institutionalised churches.” In the counterpart poem.” in a country that is “rich and fruitful. a stern. Love and Hate are necessary to Human existence.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. Contraries are essential to progression. Blake hated nevertheless the church as an institution.” or with a “multitude of lambs. The Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience is bitterly ironic about the way in which “God. this sad reality is shadowed by the speaker’s idyllic description of the poor children of London. He displays.” which lead to contrary visions.” The idea of Heaven as a reward of happiness for earthly misery.

1. revise subchapters 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 169 . If there should be major differences between them. to regain the vision of Innocence.7. The speaker’s “journey” to the garden of Love is an attempt to revive the former state. but he is no longer able to do that.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 9 The poem The Garden of Love – Text 6.4. except as an act of remembering. The two “states of the human soul” are here set in contrast. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and read the poem again more carefully.2. to 6.. in the Reader – tells the story of the loss of Innocence and the entrance in the state of Experience.4. Explain them in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. Read the poem carefully and identify the symbols by means of which the two states are contrasted.

The first subchapter of this unit deals with two prominent features announcing the Romantic sensibility. Their poetry displays an unprecedented attention to natural detail. The “Graveyard” poets (e.. in whose work pre-Romantic and Romantic elements meet. The latter may be also seen as complementary aspects of poetic imagination. 6. The same theme and situation acquires contrary implications. in its relation with “the two contrary states of the human soul”: Innocence and Experience. the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience completing each other. William Collins and William Cowper approach the theme of Nature. as Blake’s “double” poems suggest.. you have been acquainted with two poets who turned their attention to the rural universe. imagination and feelings. Edward Young and Thomas Gray) illustrate this new trend. now threatened by the march of Progress. deals with the way in which poets like James Thomson. and they acknowledge Nature’s subtle influence on man’s thoughts. nature-civilisation. and seeks to arouse compassion for the life of labour and poverty of the English peasant. One of them is the emergence of a kind of meditative poetry fond of melancholy themes and gloomy settings. George Crabbe adopts a more realistic and critical view.3.2. g. The last subchapter. 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. by focusing on those tendencies in poetry which prefigure the Romantic Age.4. Oliver Goldsmith emphasises the idyllic happiness of the traditional rural civilisation. who sees the opposition nature-civilisation in the light of the myth of Paradise and of the Fall. 170 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The theme of Nature in pre-Romantic poetry is sometimes closely associated with the opposition country-town. Subchapter 6. The transition from the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling in the 18th century was accompanied by changes in literary taste. presents the outstanding figure of William Blake. His Songs of Innocence and of Experience are the testimony of the visionary artist. The other feature is primitivism. the interest in early poetry. The fascination of James Macpherson with Britain’s Celtic past. and of Thomas Chatterton with the Middle Ages anticipates the Romantic spirit. He condemns the literary habit of idealising the countryside. Another feature of 18th century pre-Romantic poetry is the perception of rural life in its close connection with Nature. In subchapter 6.

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

luxury and materialism of urban civilisation. as well as against the sophistication. primitive: original. See also subchapter 4. or of gold or silver paint. belonging to the beginnings. concerning the typology of the novel in the 18th century.3. illuminated (about a piece of writing): decorated by the application of colour.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • secret chambers and corridors. Prophetic Books: the generic name for Blake’s longer (and often obscure) epics. stony laws: the figurative meaning of “stony” – heartless. Primitivism in literature refers to the admiration for and revival of early forms. Pity. Neoclassicism: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Romanticism: see again Romantic in the Glossary in Unit 1.1. who attacked and sometimes settled in parts of Britain between the 8th and 11th centuries. Blake associated “mystery” with secrecy and deceit. orphaned children from the charity schools to St. with His laws formulated as interdictions. in Unit 1.) poetic diction: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. ode: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Il Penseroso: see again subchapter 3. wild landscapes. 2 in Unit 4. manacles: a pair of iron rings linked by a chain. It is associated with the reaction against Neoclassicism. Among the most important of them are America. when the ascension of Christ is celebrated. the Passions.3. A Prophecy. etc. etc. Los: Blake’s mythological character represents human Imagination in his epics.1.. The Book of Los. which have a complex structure of symbolism and analogies. Most of Collins’s odes are addressed to personified abstractions (Fear. on which the Ten Commandments were written. and in which he gives an allegorical shape to his religious. Paul’s Cathedral. the 39th day after Easter. mysteries: the system of sacramental rites affording access to divinely revealed truths. The Book of Urizen. Norse: related to the ancient Scandinavian people. in Unit 3. were typical settings in Gothic fiction. Blake distinguished between the prohibitive divinity of the Old Testament. especially to the Vikings (or Norsemen).2. Jerusalem. The custom in London was to bring the poor. Highlands of Scotland: the mountainous area in northern Scotland. Milton. unfeeling – is intensified by Blake’s allusion to Moses and the Tables of the Law. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. and he rejected the pretense of the Church to intermediate between man and God. philosophical and political convictions. sentimental novel: see subchapter 5. The Four Zoas. used to secure the hands of a prisoner. and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 172 . in Unit 5. to attend the religious service. The feeling of nostalgia for a supposed Golden Age and the praise of the “state of Nature” are also features of primitivism. Holy Thursday: another name for Ascension Day. which still preserves elements of the ancient Gaelic culture.

Many topographical poems were praises of particular parks. Send-away assignment no.13. in grading your paper. Pay special attention to the images in these poems and to their symbolic significance.. Tyger: Blake’s spelling of “tiger. • the coherence. meant to win a patron’s favour. 6. whose radicalism strongly influenced the ideology of the French Revolution. 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). your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). Your commentary should not exceed 50 lines / 500 words. SAA no. 6. gardens or estates.8. Gallery of personalities • Rousseau.). the unlawful practice of lending money at an exorbitant rate of interest. clarity. 6..9. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 173 .10. 3 The Reader includes some of the “pair poems” from Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Nurse’s Song.11. The Chimney Sweeper.. Pay special attention to the instructions for the task.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • Jesus.” usurous: from usury. topographical poem: a poem in which the description of a landscape is accompanied by meditation and historical retrospection. Point out the pre-Romantic themes and attitudes that these poems illustrate. • 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. 3 will count as 10% in your final assessment. Remember that. with his law of love. and Holy Thursday (Texts 6. 6. and 6. He condemned social inequality and regarded the sovereignty of the people as the only legitimate form of political power. Jean Jacques: (1712-1778): French writer and philosopher..12.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

a lua cu sila. That I may* rise. a fi supus (the speaker urges his beloved to face the separation calmly and quietly) tear-floods. untie*. a presupune dull not intense sublunary: beneath the moon. overthrown: a nimici. Divorce me. a înrobi. I. leant a se apleca. a înfrânge bend your force concentrate. softly to whisper a şopti whilst while to melt a-şi înmuia firea. hotărât twin îngemănat thy your to roam a hoinări. John Donne. imprison me. a se înclina to hearken a asculta. and proves weak or untrue*. 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. batter to hit or beat someone heavily three-personed God the Trinity as yet până acum that I may in order that I may o’erthrow to overthrow. apply your force due cuvenit. gladly betrothed unto logodit cu to untie a dezlega. Yet dearly I love you. and stand. datorat to labour to work hard. sigh-tempests şuvoaie/potop de lacrimi. to no end*. o’erthrow me*.Reader pass away to die mildly gently. for I Except your enthrall* me. a silui Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 183 .: inflexibil. and bend Your force*. to struggle to no end vainly. never shall be free. to break. like an usurped town. a ajunge în poziţie verticală wilt will thou you just corect. blow. three-personed God*. Labour* to admit you. for. to long for) to grow erect a se îndrepta. burn. 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. overthrew. and seek to mend. fig. But is captived. Nor ever chaste. ferm. mirean) moving of the earth earthquake to reckon a gândi. to another due*. Batter My Heart Batter* my heart. Reason your viceroy* in me.7. and make me new. a subjuga to ravish a răpi. But am betrothed* unto your enemy. rupture stiff rigid. me should defend. except you ravish* me. 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. breathe. to undergo breach break. exact Text 2. or break that knot again. precis. Take me to you. and would be loved fain*. a fi atent la (here: to seek to join. a elibera to enthrall a supune. but oh. 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. shine. a rătăci to lean.

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

a se veseli to languish a se ofili. inappropriate (nefiresc) ashes cenuşă lust strong sexual desire (dorinţă.Reader had we but… if only we had coyness timiditate. fig. a se plictisi slow-chapt power the power of its slowly devouring jaws to tear (tore. which. a lua cu de-a sila strife violent struggle thorough through Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 185 . 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. fast chariot ceremonial carriage (car) yonder (poetic) over there vault burial chamber (cavou) quaint odd. indicates her “willing soul” to sport a petrece. thy your state ceremonial treatment winged having wings. groapă youthful de tinereţe. peculiar. a lâncezi. inclined instant fires the flush in her face. sfială. in spite of her coyness.: swift. tentă dew rouă willing favourably disposed. nuanţă. patimă) grave mormânt. tineresc hue culoare. torn) a smulge.

All is. though my soul more bent* To serve therewith* my maker. and present My true account. or soon or slow. Ere* half my days. Toward which time leads me. appears [in me] much less – i. lest he. 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. who best Bear his mild yoke*. in this dark world and wide. a strict overseer TEXT 3. to prevent That murmur*.Reader UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON TEXT 3. John Milton. chide*. That some more timely*-happy* spirits endueth*. the subtle* thief of youth. As ever* in my great task-master's* eye. if I have grace to use it so. which endues some more timely-happy spirits. Perhaps my semblance* might deceive* the truth. insignificant ever eternity task-master the one who imposes tasks. speed. It shall be still* in strictest measure even To that same lot*. destiny mean humble. Sonnet VII How soon hath* time. to endue: a înzestra (Inward ripeness. but Patience.” 186 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . '”Doth God exact* day-labour.1. John Milton. opportune happy fortunate. Yet be it less or more. That I to manhood* am arrived so near. however mean* or high. vârstă adultă ripeness maturitate doth does timely occuring atjust the right moment. rush bud mugur. And inward ripeness* doth* much less appear. soon replies: “God doth not need Either man's work or his own gifts. light denied*?” I fondly* ask. Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year*! My hasting days fly on with full career*.e to a lesser extent) still always lot fortune. 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. and the will of heaven. lucky endueth endues. Sonnet XVII When I consider how my light* is spent*. returning. But my late spring no bud* or blossom showeth*. And that one talent* which is death to hide Lodged with me useless*.2. obscure. boboc showeth shows (My late spring shows no bud or blossom) semblance outward appearance to deceive to mislead (a înşela) manhood bărbăţie. they serve him best.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

a face să priceapă TEXT 4. He said the Yahoos were known to hate one another more than they did any different species of animals.Reader struck with horror cuprins de groază engines maşini (piese de artilerie) grovelling to grovel: to crawl. Jonathan Swift. so. from the representation I had given him of our lives. our manners. arts. for fear their comrades should find out their treasure. my master confessed he could find little or no resemblance between the Yahoos of that country and those in ours. greu de mulţumit) whereof of which to let slip (an opportunity) a lăsa să-i scape. That this leader had usually a favorite as like himself as he could get. each single one impatient* to have all to itself. he found as near a resemblance in the disposition* of our minds. and that the dissensions of those brutes in his country were owing to the same cause with ours. whereof the Yahoos are violently fond*. but not in themselves. For he only meant to observe what parity* there was in our natures. and therefore* to protect himself. (…) But he now found he had been mistaken. excessively particular about details (pretenţios. as in fear or humility (a se târî) to entertain (an idea) a nutri (o idee) to protest a declara. and some other particulars* where Nature had no part*. and drive the female Yahoos to his kennel. 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.5. Ch. perspicace) mean opinion părere nefavorabilă to abominate to detest. if (said he) you throw among five Yahoos as much food as would be sufficient for fifty. and the like. whose employment was to lick* his masters feet and posteriors. than any of the rest. Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV. (…) That. but still looking round with great caution. they will instead of eating peaceably. speed. a asigura. and mischievous* in disposition. boundary (hotar) lenity tolerance (îngăduinţă) speedy quick. I suppose acute wits spirite luminate (acute: pătrunzător. as sometimes happens. and activity. a i se încredinţa (e. manufactures*. For. and our actions. driven) an idea into one’s head a băga în cap. without delay determination rezolvare. a încredinţa to be privy to a fi făcut părtaş la. for which he was known and then rewarded with a piece of ass’s flesh*. there are certain shining stones of several colors.g. a scăpa din mână (o ocazie) I take I think. in some fields of his country. 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. as I had described them. a fi iniţiat în. încheiere (a unei cauze juridice) topic temă. keeps always near the 196 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . fall together by ears*. This favorite is hated by the whole herd. which all could see in the rest. to dislike intensely mystery urzeli tainice to confine to limit. 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. they will dig with their claws for whole days to get them out. government. to restrict bound limit. the shortness of my claws*. and when part of these stones are fixed in the earth. except where it was to my real disadvantage in point of* strength. (…) As to learning. un secret) short views concepţii înguste endued înzestrat nice fastidious. and hide them by heaps* in their kennels*. and carry them away.

Reader

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

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

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

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

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

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

a înştiinţa mischief neajuns. in this. perfidious traitor*! deservest* thou to smart. mâhnit severe trial încercare grea unguarded imprudent tender years vârstă fragedă ye you (pl. differing from comedy. as the serious epic from tragedy: its action being more extended and comprehensive*. or tear* it out of my writing.my heart] fully deserve to suffer summons chemare. before summons* came. 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. în mod clar rigorous aspru. and to one too. Joseph Andrews (Preface) Now. when I get home. O my treacherous*. în consecinţă to tear (tore. 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. I could have no notion of what it was to be so affected! But prayer. mâhnire partial to având o slăbiciune pentru nay (literary) ba mai mult. of which many instances will occur in these works […]. sever grief durere. a copleşi to be sure cu siguranţă to own a mărturisi presumption cutezanţă. so in the other they are light* and ridiculous: it differs in its characters by introducing persons of inferior rank. a se furişa to beseech (besought) a ruga cu stăruinţă. I hope. mai mult chiar to overcome a depăşi. a comic romance* is a comic epic poem* in prose. unless* in writings of the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 203 . for giving up so weakly. to consider of this. But though we have sometimes admitted this in our diction.e. and therefore*. necaz wert were inconsiderately (în mod) nesocotit. I must either not show you this confession of my weakness.5. a rupe memorandum notă. that as in the one these are grave and solemn. and the benefits of your good lesson and examples.) couldst thou could you serve how couldst thou serve me thus? Cum ai putut să te porţi astfel? notice to give notice: a preveni. îndrăzneală crept to creep (crept): a se strecura. [Memorandum*.) treacherous trădător (adj. In the diction. It differs from the serious romance in its fable* and action. who had used me so hardly. intrigă plainly în mod deschis. nicidecum traitor trădător (noun) deservest well …deservest thou to smart: you [i. only dangerous attacks! After all. of inferior manners.Reader measure excuse me? I never before knew. avertizare likewise de asemenea hadst (you) had thou hadst so well maintained thy post you put up resistance successfully avowed făţiş therefore aşadar. însemnare TEXT 5. a implora grieved amărât. and resignation to the Divine Will. for there it is never properly introduced. Henry Fielding. by preserving the ludicrous* instead of the sublime. as I thought.] plot uneltire. burlesque itself may be sometimes admitted. we have carefully excluded it from our sentiments and characters. in its sentiments and diction*. întristat. will enable me to get over this heavy trial. torn) out a smulge. containing a much larger circle of incidents. Yet. and when likewise* thou hadst* so well maintained thy post* against the most violent and avowed*. nechibzuit thyself yourself thy poor mistress biata ta stăpână (not) in the least câtuşi de puţin. thy whole self. I think. and introducing a greater variety of characters. and consequently.

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

comic romance roman comic comic epic poem poem eroicomic comprehensive cuprinzător fable subiect. 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. of our pity. exact sensible endowed with common sense (cu judecată. but affectation appears to me the only true source of the Ridiculous. it is then that these unfortunate circumstances. tend* only to raise our mirth*. 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. 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. The poet carries this very far: None are for being what they are in fault. fig. cu stângăcie. sferă affecting false characters pretending to be in a way that one is not.: the primary source licence liberty province domeniu. / Ci de-a nu fi ceea ce vrea să pară. or lameness* endeavours to display* agility. smaller faults. face parte din liberality generosity (mărinimie. dărnicie) vain vanitos awkwardly stângaci. contradiction doth does deceit înşelătorie it partakes of se înrudeşte cu. […] Great vices are the proper objects of our detestation.Reader […] Much less are natural imperfections the objects of derision. cu bun simţ) outré (French) exaggerated hath has alma mater (Latin) the nourishing mother. But for not being what they would be thought*.” Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 205 . 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. but when ugliness aims at the applause* of beauty. which at first moved our compassion.

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

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

The Deserted Village A man he was. passing rich trecând drept bogat. but relieved* their pain: The long-remembered beggar was his guest. Go. he climbed the loftiest bough*. And passing rich* with forty pounds* a year. a linguşi) fashioned potrivit. but his sad emblem now. Oliver Goldsmith. Remote* from towns he ran his godly* race. whose age Can with no cares except his own engage. a boy. that offspring* round their feeble* fire. His house was known to all the vagrant* train*. distant godly pious. a alina. whose trembling hand Turns on the wretched* hearth* the expiring* brand*! (…) (…) yonder* see that hoary swain*. croit to prize a preţui. Who. Nor e’er* had changed. the matron* pale. and ask if peace be there. cortegiu şir chid to chide. If peace be his – that drooping* weary* sire*. fiind considerat bogat pound liră remote far away. Or hers. a mângâia) TEXT 6. look within. Whose beard descending swept his aged breast. chid: to rebuke. hoinar. a mustra) wandering rătăcire to relieve to bring alleviation (a uşura. He chid* their wanderings*. or seek for power.1.2. More skilled to raise the wretched* than to rise.Reader UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY TEXT 6. devout (evlavios. to scold (a dojeni. cerşetor train alai. Then his first joy. Far other aims his heart had learned to prize*. nor wished to change his place. propped* on that rude* staff*. Unpracticed he to fawn*. a aprecia the wretched cei sărmani/nenorociţi vagrant vagabond. George Crabbe. cucernic) e’er ever to fawn to seek attention and admiration by flattering (a se ploconi. Go! if the peaceful cot* your praises share. modelat. Whom the smooth* stream and smoother sonnet please. 208 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . By doctrines fashioned* to the varying hour. Or theirs. The Village Ye* gentle* souls who dream of rural ease*. to all the country dear. looks up to see The bare arms* broken from the withering* tree On which.

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

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

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

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

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

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

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