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Specializarea LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ Forma de învăţământ ID - semestrul III
SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURY BRITISH LITERATURE
Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
LIMBA ŞI LITERATURA ENGLEZĂ
Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature
Ministerul Educaţiei şi Cercetării Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Nici o parte a acestei lucrări nu poate fi reprodusă fără acordul scris al Ministerului Educaţiei şi Cercetării
ISBN 10 973-0-04576-3; ISBN 13 978-973-0-04576-5.
1.1. 1.1.1. 1.1.2. 1.1.3. 1.1.4. 1.2. 1.3. 1.4. 1.4.1. 1.4.2. 1.4.3. 1.4.4. 1.5. 1.5.1. 1
The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background
Unit objectives The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The intellectual scene in the 17th and 18th centuries Reason and faith in the Age of the Enlightenment From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling The Enlightenment: an age of progress An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries The evolution of poetic forms Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries Jacobean tragedy Comedy in the early 17th century Drama during the Restoration period Sentimental drama and burlesque comedy in the 18th century The evolution of prose style Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading
9 10 10 10 11 12 12 13 15 16 17 18 19 19 21 21 23 24 24 28 30 30 31 32 32 33 33 35 36 37 37 38 39 40 41 43 43 44 46 46 47 48 i
2.1. 2.1.1. 2.1.2. 2.2. 2.2.1. 2.2.2. 2.2.3. 2.2.4. 2.2.5. 2.2.6. 2.2.7. 2.2.8. 2.2.9. 2.2.10. 2.2.11. 2.2.12. 2.3. 2.3.1.
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
Unit objectives The emergence of the baroque sensibility The late Renaissance: characteristics of the baroque sensibility Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry Shakespeare’s genius. His later plays The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s great tragedies Hamlet: a revenge play Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility in Hamlet Hamlet: the philosopher vs. the man of action King Lear: the madness of tragic grief To be or to seem: Othello Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience Shakespeare’s last plays The plot of The Tempest Major themes Symbols in The Tempest The play-metaphor The metaphysical poets Characteristics of metaphysical poetry
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
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 . 18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124. 3.3. 4.1. 4.4.Contents 2.3. the Christian humanist Milton’s early poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso Lycidas – a pastoral elegy Milton’s sonnets Sonnet VII Sonnet XVII Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Raphael’s warning to Adam The creation of the world The seduction of Eve The world after the Fall The heroes of Paradise Lost Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell Satan. 126.96.36.199.2. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No. 4.4.4. 3. 3.1.8. 3. 3. 2. 2. 188.8.131.52.3. 4. The Works of John Milton Unit objectives Milton.1. 3. 184.108.40.206.2. 4. 220.127.116.11.3.5. 3. 18.104.22.168. 3. 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. 22.214.171.124. 3.4.3. 3.6. 126.96.36.199. 188.8.131.52. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 4 4.3. 3. 4. 184.108.40.206. 2. ii The Restoration and the Augustan Age Unit objectives Restoration drama Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment Dominant forms in Restoration drama Restoration comedy and its character types William Congreve.220.127.116.11.2.1. 2.1.2.
4. 5.Contents 4. 18.104.22.168. 5. 4.2.1. 5. 5.5.4. 22.214.171.124. 126.96.36.199. 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. 188.8.131.52.184.108.40.206. 220.127.116.11.2.4.1. 4.3.1. 18.104.22.168.2.4. 22.214.171.124. “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. 5. 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.1.3.4. the frustrated idealist The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 96 98 98 98 100 103 103 103 105 105 107 107 110 110 111 111 113 115 116 117 118 118 118 119 121 123 123 124 125 127 128 128 129 130 132 132 133 134 134 135 136 136 136 137 139 139 140 142 142 143 iii 5 5.3. 5. 5.4. 4.1.4. 4. 5.7. 5.2. 5. 4.4. 5. 4.2. 5. 5. 5. 126.96.36.199. 5. 4.7. 5. 4. 5.2.1. Gulliver. 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 .6.2.3. 188.8.131.52.5.2.4. 5.5.4. 184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11. 5.
3.2. 6.4.4. 6.2. 6. 18.104.22.168.1.7. The Seasons William Cowper. 6. 3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading Reader in seventeenth and eighteenth century literature Selected bibliography iv Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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 6.3.3. 6. 22.214.171.124.4. 126.96.36.199.3. 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.1.1. 6. 6. 6.1.4.Contents Gallery of personalities SAA No. 6.2. 6.2. 6.2. 188.8.131.52.4.4.1. 184.108.40.206. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake. 6. 6. English pre-Romantic poetry Unit objectives Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The poetry of melancholy meditation The interest in early poetry The pre-Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The rural universe in 18thcentury poetry The sentimental approach: Oliver Goldsmith Character sketch in The Deserted Village The realistic approach: George Crabbe Robert Burns and the popular tradition Pre-Romantic nature poetry James Thomson. 6.
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. Before starting your study. the study of the present course will more efficiently contribute to your professional becoming. by encouraging your response to particular texts. Defoe. How this course can help you The study of this course will widen your perspective on English literature and its evolution. and will highlight the contributions of their most representative literary personalities. such as was presented in your Cultural Studies course. Fielding. Milton. In this way. and to the enrichment of your grasp of the English language. Blake.Introduction INTRODUCTION 1. You are expected and urged to bring to the understanding of this extended literary period the knowledge acquired in your previous study. It will thus contribute to the consolidation of your knowledge and understanding of British culture and civilisation. and an “agent” in the cultural dynamics in a country. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 1 . a carrier of values. among others). it would be helpful if you refreshed your acquaintance with the basic historical and cultural framework of the 17th and 18th centuries. this course aims at enlarging your understanding of British culture and civilisation. Swift. Course objectives As already mentioned. What this course is about This course is a brief introduction to English literature in the 17th and 18th centuries. Literature is always an important testimony to the evolution of this spirit.” at helping you refine your perception of literary phenomena and categories. It will familiarise you with the defining features of the literary trends and doctrines of these two centuries. but also an intimate acquaintance with the spirit of that culture and civilisation. The double focus of the course – on general aspects of a particular period or doctrine. 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. Being concerned with aspects of literary history. 2. 3. but also to examine more closely particular texts by the most important authors (Shakespeare. and on certain texts – will hopefully help you to overcome the relatively great temporal and cultural distance separating us from those centuries. It also aims at developing your “reading competence.
the Augustan Age. a list of key words. is structured around a series of tasks that you must accomplish – the self-assessing questions (the SAQs). forming a chronological survey of the major literary developments in the 17th and 18th centuries. you should therefore be able to: define the distinctive features. • 4. the characteristic attitudes and concerns of such cultural-historical-literary movements or periods as the Renaissance. Neoclassicism. in a given text. characterisation. By the end of your study of this course. Each unit. Besides them. Course content and structure This course is structured in six units of study.g.g. a unit contains a series of “auxiliary” sections: a Summary. thematic and formal structure in the works of various authors. preRomanticism) • identify such features in the work of a particular author or in a particular text (e. the Baroque. Some of the units also contain an assignment that you have to do and send to your tutor. and a Gallery of personalities. or establish what links Fielding’s novels to literary Neoclassicism. in its turn. 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. 2 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . identify the features of the baroque sensibility in Shakespeare’s tragedies. or what makes Blake a Romantic poet) • identify. The solutions and suggestions for SAQs are provided in a separate section. as part of your overall assessment.lIntroduction This complex aim presupposes your development of certain specific competences. a Glossary. 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.
The unit surveys characteristic preRomantic themes and motifs. the periodical essay of the 18th century as an important contribution to Augustan literature.1. The main focus in this unit is on the imaginative structure and thematic interest of Milton’s masterpiece. Richardson. the literary doctrine of Neoclassicism. • 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. The most common SAQs in this course will require you to: Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 3 . and with the evolution of this genre. 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. hopefully.2. They appeal not only to your memory. Fielding and L. The self-assessment questions (SAQs) The self-assessment questions in each unit have the role of helping you to structure and organise your study. The variety of these learning tasks will.Introduction 4. but also to your independent thinking and to your imagination. S. • 4. engage you actively and in diverse ways in the process of study. and they will enable you to work with it in a specific context. H. with an emphasis on the evolution of genres and styles and their main representatives. with main focus on Jonathan Swift. and Augustan satire. the epic poem Paradise Lost. 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). These tasks will guide you in the process of ordering your knowledge. and to draw your own conclusions. • 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. Sterne –. as well as major representatives. • Unit 4 (The Restoration and the Augustan Age) deals with four major aspects: the comedy of manners during the age of the Restoration. The major authors considered in this unit are Shakespeare and the poets John Donne and Andrew Marvell. • Unit 3 (The works of John Milton) emphasises Milton’s Christian humanism. You will get acquainted with the contributions of four major novelists – D. • Unit 2 (The late Renaissance and the Baroque) deals with the emergence of the baroque sensibility in English late Renaissance literature. and insists on William Blake as both a pre-Romantic and Romantic poet. Defoe.
an author’s work. • paraphrase a given fragment from a studied literary work. summarise its argument. state its theme • comment on / interpret a given fragment. narrative technique. You are given detailed instructions about what is expected from you. with the typological definition of a work. etc.lIntroduction answer questions about the theme. at the end of the unit. line. match incomplete statements so as to reconstruct an idea or a description • identify true/false sentences. if the case may be. characterisation. Try to analyse your errors and to become aware of everything you have missed in the instructions of the SAQ. 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 strongly advised to resist the temptation of consulting this section before you have actually tried to do the exercises yourself. in the literary text you were asked to work on. • A self-assessed question (SAQ) is signalled in the course text by this icon accompanying a textbox. so as to obtain synthetic reformulations or rephrasings of relevant details about a literary period. and. Do not get discouraged if some of your answers should not come near the suggestions offered at the end. 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). Solutions and suggestions for SAQs You can check your answers to each SAQ by going to this section. the title of a work. The estimated length of your answers will be indicated as number of words / number of lines.3. Remember that what counts most is the process of thinking that leads you to a particular answer. A line in your textboxes is estimated to contain ten words on the average.. fragment) • complete sentences. and you are advised to read those instructions carefully and to follow them. stylistic features. etc. 4. after you have identified them in/after a provided short description • match a given literary fragment with a given paraphrase. etc. symbolic elements. the independent intellectual effort that you are encouraged to put into your learning. 4 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . of a certain work or a provided fragment • explain the relevance or significance of a certain item (phrase.
• the Selective bibliography at the end of the course. in which terms or phrases that have been considered difficult or unfamiliar to you are explained. at the end. The terms included in the Glossary are marked by an asterisk (*) in the text of the unit. in Unit 1. will also appear in Units 5 and 6. for the Great Chain of Being*. You may ask your tutor to help you with the access to those sources. which is explained in the Glossary in Unit 1. Auxiliary sections Each unit contains.3. which includes basic information about the life and work of the mentioned personalities. to organise it around the most important issues • the Glossary (in alphabetical order). the term Enlightenment.1. whose Glossaries will send you back to the Glossary in Unit 1. in order to make sure you remember exactly what a term refers to.3. other instruments meant to assist your study. if you wish to supplement or clarify your knowledge • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 5 . when this notion is used again in Units 4 or 6.1. which contains titles that should not be very hard to find in libraries. Some terms may recur in several units. • Further reading. which indicates a minimal bibliography for each unit. an asterisk must be understood to mark not just the word it is attached to. For instance. The materials indicated in the Further reading section and in the Selective bibliography (see below) offer you supplementary information. Thus. you will look up the whole phrase in the Glossary. but the phrase of which that word is part. Sometimes. you will be sometimes returned to the Glossary of a previous unit to reinforce or refresh your understanding of them. These auxiliary sections are: the Summary and a list of key words. You may also be directed back to a certain subchapter in a previous unit.Introduction 4. For example. if necessary or desired. • the Gallery of personalities (in the alphabetical order of the last names). with the pages where you may find relevant information. Most of the books included there are available in any University library.4. which will enable you to review and focus your knowledge. the Glossaries will send you back to 1. the notion of heroic couplet is explained in subchapter 1. not just Being.
lIntroduction 4. If you should find these lexical notes insufficient for your understanding of a particular text. In any case. The Reader provides you with little glossaries for each text.2 will cover units 4 and 5. The Reader The course is accompanied by a Reader.5. while SAA no. 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. or misleadingly familiar to you are explained either in English or in Romanian. try to read each fragment more than once. some of these texts might seem difficult to you. and 6. As the texts are not very long. and the weight of each assignment: 6 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the number of tasks. don’t hesitate to use a good dictionary. The three SAAs are placed at the end of units 3. Assessment and evaluation Besides the self-assessment questions included in each unit. which will enable your tutor to assess your performance in the course work. the course contains three send-away assignments (SAAs). 1 will assess your knowledge of units 2 and 3. this should not take you too much time. The written test that you will sit at the end of the semester will add the other 60%. The table below represents the place. As we are dealing with 17th and 18th century literature. 5. A send-away assignment (SAA) is signalled in the text by the icon accompanying this textbox. which contains the selection of texts you need in order to accomplish some of the course tasks. or one word may be given an explanation/translation different from the one you might be familiar with. 5. before you start solving the task. The cumulated weight of these SAAs in your final grade is 40%. These first two SAAs will therefore consist in more than one task. especially the poetry texts. SAA no. The given explanation or translation into Romanian applies only to the respective context. and make sure you understand its general meaning or basic ideas. difficult.
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). so pay special attention to the instructions for each task (30%). however. clarity. 2.3 3 5 6 2 3 1 1. 28 are meant for individual study of the course material (the solving of the SAQs included). and 8 hours to the completion of your SAAs. 1. 3. the tutor will take into account: • the degree to which your answer respects the formulated requirement.Introduction Unit Number of tasks and their weight in each SAA Weight of each SAA in the final assessment SAA no. to go through each unit in approximately 4 hours. Note that a typewritten paper is likely to ease your tutor’s work. at least take care that your handwriting should be fully legible. half of the answer is already contained in the question. Your ability to identify and use the knowledge required by a particular situation is part of what is assessed in any test. If your level of proficiency is lower. your course work may take you more time. 6 hours are allotted to your tutorial meetings. 2. theoretically. If you have no possibility to type your assignment. find your own rhythm and divide your study time into several sessions. You can reserve two weeks for each unit of learning – which means that you are expected. Your study schedule This course is devised for 42 hours of study. make sure you understand what is being asked of you in each assignment. whose reading may take you some extra time. You may. 6.2 SAA no. As in the case of the SAQs.1 SAA no. This is more likely to happen when you are required to work on literary texts. 50% 50% 50% 30% 20% 100% 10% 20% 10% 40% In the assessment of each assignment. Plan your study by taking into account that a semester has 14 weeks. Of these hours. Most of the time. • the coherence. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 7 . 1.
there are SAAs. along the 17th and 18th centuries in England. which you will find in the Reader accompanying the coursebook. and gallery of personalities). list of key words. More information about the subjects in each unit is available in the selective bibliography which concludes the coursebook. according to a pre-established schedule. Summary This course offers you an overview of the literary periods and trends. glossary. together. of the evolution of literary genres. A provisional study schedule may look like this: Week Unit Number of study hours Assignment Number of hours for the SAAs 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Introduction Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 Unit 4 Unit 5 Unit 6 Revision 2 4 4 4 4 4 4 2 28 SAA no. as the course provides you with the solutions and suggestions for SAQs at the end of each unit. a revision of the course material. as 40% of the final grade. and 6. 8 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . whose content follows a chronological line.2 SAA no. At the end of Units 3. which will help you to organise and focus your knowledge. Many of these SAQs require your response to a literary text. representative authors.3 3 3 8 SAA no. 5. Each unit includes a series of self-assessing tasks (SAQs). You have the possibility to monitor your work by verifying your answers. respectively. as well as a list of suggested further reading. The course contains several auxiliary sections (summary. The three assignments will count. It is structured in six units of study. which you must write and send to your tutor.1 2 Planning your course work is important as it will enable you to send your assignments to the tutor in due time. but which also focus on dominant genres and on outstanding.lIntroduction The first and the last week should be reserved for the Introduction and. forms and styles. while the final written test will represent 60 % in your overall evaluation.
4. 1.1. 1. 220.127.116.11. 18.104.22.168. 22.214.171.124.3.3.4. 1.1.1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background UNIT 1 THE SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES: INTELLECTUAL AND LITERARY BACKGROUND Unit Outline 1 1.1. 1. 1. 126.96.36.199.2.2. 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 . 1.4.
science. as the Enlightenment is often described. at the end of this period.1. The growing critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. Culturally the two centuries correspond to two movements whose basic tendency was the emancipation of man: the Renaissance* and the Enlightenment*. seen as extending up to the Restoration* (1660) were periods of gradual but irreversible changes in modes of thought. which in England is in fact considered to have started in 1688. attitudes and practices. religion. The intellectual scene Along the two centuries. in which the progress of England to modernity was steady in all fields. the arts – all fields of human endeavour went through crucial transformations during the 17th century. mentalities. colonial expansion and an extraordinary economic development made England. 10 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . dramatic and prose genres and their main representatives in their proper literary-historical context within the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries Unit objectives 1. Political. literature.1. The completion of this transition was to take place during the next age.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. 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. The gradual achievement of political stability. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. nature and divinity during the Age of Reason.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. The rise. the year of the Glorious Revolution*. as well as the faith in progress. The end of “high Renaissance” (the flourishing of the Elizabethan* Age) and the “late Renaissance”. social and economic life. 1. philosophy. in the latter part of the 17th century. obscurantism and intolerance. of the Enlightenment. a powerful flourishing nation. marked the entrance into modernity. radical changes occurred in intellectual habits and preoccupations.
in a systematic effort. when The Royal Society “for the improving of Natural Knowledge” was founded. a religious movement which aimed at reviving the Evangelical spirit and the ideal of Christian life. the capacity of distinguishing right from wrong. to reconcile Reason and Faith. This new faith – Deism. a reaction against mysticism and obscurantism. Engaging in a variety of original scientific experiments. which was left to develop by itself on the basis of these perfect laws. and it was essentially optimistic. in particular. in 1662. combined the traditional confidence in the divine infinite wisdom with the intellectual spirit of the age. that human life be enriched by new discoveries and powers. was an evidence of the creator’s good will. The optimism of the Deists extended to human nature. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 11 . The Royal Society endeavoured. Deism attempted to give a rational foundation to religious thought.2. It was a highly intellectualised religious approach. working according to impersonal laws which testified to the supreme intelligence of the Creator. It was to be counter-balanced by the Evangelical Revival*. which could not offer spiritual comfort to the large masses of the poor and uneducated. endowed with a sixth sense: the moral sense. 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. initiated by Isaac Newton and John Locke*. It was a rational alternative to religious dogmatism.1. had important philosophical and theological implications: the universe was now conceived as a perfect mechanism. to “overcome the mysteries of all the works of Nature” and to apply that knowledge “for the benefit of human life. Deists believed that the admirable order of the universe. and which encouraged emotional effusion as a way of achieving communion with God.” This idea will be echoed several decades later. under the patronage of Charles II. manifest in its rationally and experimentally discernible laws. The scientific discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton*. the “universal Architect.” 1. The moral philosophy of the Deists argued that man was innately good. His well-known maxim “Knowledge is Power” points to the utilitarian conception of the role of science.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Francis Bacon It is also during these two centuries that modern science was born. or Natural Religion –.” God was seen as the prime cause of a harmonious universe. In his work Novum Organum (1620) he explicitly states that “The true and lawful goal of the sciences is simply this. One of the most ardent promoters of the new scientific spirit was Francis Bacon* (1561-1626).
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. T F 4. Individual and social good was the object of all endeavours in this age. The interest in the constitution and workings of the human mind awakened the awareness that man’s response to reality was not only rational. with its belief in the perfectibility of man. continued the project of the Renaissance. The growing spirit of individualism. 1. It was a general dedication to the cause of progress. 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 Deist notion of innate virtue came to be connected with man’s capacity for feeling. The Royal Society was an institution concerned with the spreading of Neoclassical principles in art and literature. the awareness of the complex interdependencies in a modern civilisation made it necessary to reconcile the individual pursuit of happiness and freedom with the general wellbeing. which made Enlightenment England a model of civilisation for the Western world. T F 5. The Deist image of God as the “Universal Architect” reveals a rationalist-mechanicist conception of the universe. The Enlightenment: an age of progress On the whole. and which prepared the way for the Romantic Age*.4. Circle T (true) or F (false). The Enlightenment continued the Renaissance faith in man’s perfectibility and sought for man’s emancipation both as an individual and as a social being. T F 3. in his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). T F 2. the Enlightenment. The cult of Reason thus gave way to the cult of Feeling. for each sentence. but also affective and instinctual. The poet Alexander Pope indicated.” The whole century was preoccupied with the idea of man’s happiness and of the improvement of man’s condition on earth. T F 12 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1.3. The emergence of Deism was a reaction to religious dogmatism. Read the statements below and identify the true ones. appropriately. to superstition and obscurantism. in the latter part of the Age of the Enlightenment.1.1. the central concern of the Enlightenment. 1. 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. which may be defined as the Age of Sensibility. when he declared: ”The proper study of mankind is Man.
including readers of more modest education. You may also need to revise some of the terms explained in the Glossary. for instance.1. T F 8. The 18th century is called sometimes The Age of Common Man. An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries From a literary point of view. to 1. Numerous treatises on literary art established norms and precepts. Jacobean* and Caroline* of the “high” and late Renaissance literature points not only to a temporal delimitation.” T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in the orbit of the crown. After 1688. with their Literature in the Age of Common Man cultivated taste. regularity. at the end of the unit. symmetry. The literature of the Renaissance was under the sign of the classical revival*. The abundance of classical Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 13 . and exalted Reason as the only defining human faculty. and the literary field was no longer confined to the learned. The Age of the Enlightenment excluded completely the interest in human feeling and emotion. the great ages of the Renaissance and of the Enlightenment may be further divided according to various criteria. T F 7. If you have failed to identify any of the sentences correctly as true or false. in one way or another. It is significant. 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. with little or no classical knowledge. for proportion. The Evangelical Revival shared with Deism the attempt to give a rational foundation to religious faith.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 6.1. the social diversification and the “unfixing” of the strictly hierarchical order of the Renaissance led gradually towards a “democratisation” of literature. but also the ultimate arbiter life on literature in matters of literary and artistic fashions. A new interest in rhetoric animated authors to pursue eloquence by a lavish use of figures of speech and the display of wit*. read again subchapters.2. There was a general care for discipline and refinement in composition. The absolute authority of the monarch made the Court the Influence of Court centre of intellectual and literary life. and both writers and audiences were. that the notion of reading public emerges now. The Court was not only the catalyst of the emerging national feeling. the decrease in the power of the Crown. This is mainly connected with the rise of the middle classes and the growth of their cultural importance. when the literary audience becomes more diversified. It was the main focus of literary attention. The division into Elizabethan.4. and the accepted patterns and conventions were touchstones for literary virtuosity and originality. Alexander Pope pointed out the humanistic orientation of the Enlightenment in his maxim “The proper study of mankind is man. 1. but also to the close connection between the dominant literary values of those ages and Court life.1.
Racine. The comparative merit of ancient and modern standards of literary excellence and learning became a central issue of critical debate. …on literary taste and fashions during the Renaissance.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. in which the declining phase of the Renaissance was characterised by a return to the classics. during the Augustan Age*. above all. with its highly conventional forms and rhetorical style. 2. a new consciousness of the relationship between literary tradition and modernity. …… c. The mid-seventeenth century was an age of transition. Molière. Corneille. The relationship between tradition and modernity became a matter of literary consciousness during…… 1. on the model of the French controversy known as the “Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns. This led to the emergence Neoclassicism* in England. England’s intellectual and literary exchanges with Catholic France had been suspended during the Civil War*. A significant aspect of Augustan literature is the development and importance of literary criticism. …the Augustan Age. Jean Racine. This reflects. the “Sun King” –: Nicolas Boileau. English Neoclassicism must be linked not only to the survival of the Renaissance humanism. Molière)…… d. SAQ 2 Read the partial statements below and match them.” started in the late 17th century. 14 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a. when the merits of the “Ancients” and the “Moderns” became the object of comparison. The great French classical authors of the 17th century (Boileau. Much of Renaissance literature. but they were resumed during the Restoration*. so as to obtain complete sentences describing aspects of the general literary picture of the 17th and 18th centuries. Complete each sentence in the provided space. Pierre Corneille. but also to the influence of the French authors of the great classical century – the age of Louis XIV. The Court was the main source of influence…… b.
The common vehicle for it was the heroic couplet – two rhyming The Augustan heroic lines containing a complete statement. The heroic couplet was the perfect verse couplet structure of the Age of Reason. the ode*. original or translated epics. and it made extensive use of wit. and the Puritan Andrew Marvell must also be included here. Other lyric forms endured: the ode. In parallel. but English poets varied the highly conventional form of this kind of poem. If you have failed to make the right match. the blank verse* – on the model of Milton in his great Blank verse epic* Paradise Lost (1667) – was extensively used in the 18th century. religious faith – John Donne. John Dryden (in the former). …addressed itself to learned readers. A “metaphysical” strain exists in Shakespeare’s final period of creation. James Thomson. A remarkable poetic development in the first half of the 17th century was the metaphysical poetry (John Donne. tight logical coherence and striking imagery. Robert Herrick). for instance. by the Romantic poets. in a variety of poetical forms: philosophical poems. They approached other themes besides love: e. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 15 . the sonnet* – dominated Renaissance poetry. 1. which departed from the artificiality and poetry conventionalism of most Elizabethan poetry.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 3. 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. It favoured conciseness. Thomas Carew. or his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). George Herbert. The most Renaissance lyric enduring poetic achievements of the early 17th century is the forms sequence of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609).2. …influenced English literary Neoclassicism. continued to be used throughout the 17th and 18th centuries: John Milton. Thomas Gray and William Collins (in the latter).g. concentration. 4. combining classical restraint with force of argument and expressive clarity. The sonnet fell into disuse during the late Renaissance and it was revived only towards the end of the 18th century. at the end of the unit. acquainted with the great classical authors and works. The chief model for The sonnet sequence Renaissance soneteers was Petrarch* and his love sonnets to Laura. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Its name refers to a certain Metaphysical expressive strategy. the pastoral* lyric. in its various forms – the song*. Andrew Marvell. Its perfect mastery is illustrated by works like Pope’s didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711).3. or religion and politics – John Milton. which are illustrative of a pre-Romantic* cross-current. Alexander Pope. The evolution of poetic forms The lyric. Apart from the classical poetic forms that survived into the Restoration and the Augustan Age. conveyed by means of a rich variety of rhetorical effects. 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). It appealed both to the intellect and to the emotions.
If there should be major differences between them. some of them of popular origin (the song. the ballad) and the increasing hostility to the artificiality and conventionalism of Augustan poetic diction* heralded the shift in taste which marked the beginning of Romanticism.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Towards the end of the century. comparable perhaps only with the rise of the novel in the next century. 1. and the “poetry of sensibility” which announced the coming of the Romantic Age (Unit 6). The flourishing of English drama during the Renaissance is a unique phenomenon. a new appreciation of older poetic forms. It was the only form of literature which.3.4. enjoyed a widely popular appeal. a brilliant constellation of playwrights founded a dramatic tradition which represents the best and most original expression of the nation’s creative genius. 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 . the verse satires of Dryden and Pope (Unit 4). in the space left below. In the following units of this course. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. revise subchapter 1. at the end of the unit. together with their most outstanding representatives. through its representation on stage. In little more than half a century (1580-1642). SAQ 3 Which are the most popular kinds of poems in the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least six of them. Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries The Renaissance was the Golden Age of English drama.
the wronged hero plans revenge. but the spirit of the great tradition was never recaptured. daring and wit. 1607). masque*.1. Of the Caroline playwrights. in Paradise Lost. 17 Revenge tragedy The villain in revenge tragedy Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . where bloody deeds were only evoked through an efficient rhetoric of the dramatic discourse. tragi-comedy. sometimes he rights the wrong done to another. A particular type of protagonist became fashionable in revenge tragedies: the villain. and in the 18th century it was replaced by the novel in popularity. while others changed. insanity. 1605-6). Jacobean and Caroline plays usually represented atrocities on stage. exploiting excessively morbid ingredients like incest.4. the sensational plot. but destroys himself along with his enemies. The great age of English drama ended abruptly in 1642. with the restoration of monarchy. Milton’s Satan. with its audience arranged according to rank.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Contemporary reconstruction of a Jacobean playhouse The play-house. Renaissance playwrights borrowed the five-act structure. 1612) and especially John Webster (The Duchess of Malfi. rape. They were generally. They saw the theatre as a source of moral corruption through the “idle” pleasure that it offered. as well as John Webster’s heroine in The White Devil. pastoral drama. and this “unholy alliance” between crown and stage increased the intransigence of the Puritans. with his exploration of the darkness of strange passions. historical drama. John Ford (‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore. is the most gifted. fascinating through unbounded ambition. inspired by the plays of the Roman Stoic Seneca*. Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1601) is the finest illustration of this kind of tragedy. was a miniature of the English society. 1. 1614). when the Puritans* closed the theatres. play-houses were reopened. or Vittoria Corombona (1612) are among the most accomplished portrayals of the villain in drama. Some dramatic forms went out of fashion. 1633). each variety of spectator responding to the performance according to his/her education and imagination. The great acting companies were under the patronage of the king. In 1660. built around the theme of revenge. treachery. and the rhetorical manner. to accommodate the tastes of a new public. the fundamentally evil hero/heroine. etc. who usually appears as a ghost on the stage. The dramatic genres popular during the Renaissance were extremely diverse: tragedy and comedy with their varieties. From Senecan tragedy. Thomas Middleton (Women Beware Women. In such plays. Shakespeare’s protagonist in Richard III (1592-3) and Lady Macbeth (Macbeth. sensational and macabre. drama witnessed a decline. 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. Jacobean tragedy One of the most widespread forms of tragedy was the revenge tragedy. Unlike Senecan plays. On the whole. murder. Masters of this genre were the Jacobean dramatists Cyril Tourneur (The Revenger’s Tragedy.
The English play-house during the Renaissance accommodated a diverse audience.4. His best plays. Seneca’s tragedies inspired Jacobean and Caroline authors in the representation of atrocities on stage. a genre which will survive into the 18th century. as in All’s Well That Ends Well (1602-3) or Measure for Measure (1604-5). in miniature. at the end of the unit. The Alchemist (1610) and Bartholomew Fair (1614) are social comedies of city life. in the last period of creation. centred on the theme of love. 1. The mixture of serious and comic elements results in tragicomedy. Shakespeare’s Elizabethan phase included a number of exquisite romantic comedies.4. but. T F 2. dealing with middle or lower class life and concentrating on personal and domestic maters – unlike “grand” tragedy. 1. T F 7. intended to correct vices and follies by denouncing them. in Paradise Lost. Ben Jonson* illustrates another form. T F Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. reminds of the fascinating villain-heroes of the Renaissance revenge tragedies by his extraordinary ambition and boldness. his comedies become darker. Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are the great masters. SAQ 4 For a revision of some important features of Renaissance English drama. circle the appropriate letter: T (true) or F (false). and 1.1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background A distinct type in late Renaissance drama is domestic tragedy.2. whose fall from eminence marks the destruction of an order. Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a classic example of domestic tragedy. though each in a different way. Epicoene. T F 3. with its noble characters.4. read the following statements. For each sentence. Milton’s Satan. identifying the four true ones. 18 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . read again subchapters 1. T F 5. Renaissance tragedy had four acts – a structure borrowed from Seneca. T F 4. or in Philaster (1609) by John Fletcher and Francis Beaumont. the satirical comedy. as in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida (1601-2) or The Winter’s Tale (1610-11). T F 6. or The Silent Woman (1609). or at least tinged with bitterness. Volpone (1606). Comedy in the early 17th century In the field of comedy. The hero of revenge tragedy often destroys himself in his desire to right a wrong done to him or to another. reflecting. If you have failed to identify the true statements. The Jacobean and Caroline authors of revenge tragedies had Seneca as their model. the hierarchy of English society.
4. 1777). Heroic plays.3. Richard Cumberland (The Brothers. The most representative works of this kind belong to Richard Steele (The Conscious Lovers. but it appealed to a wide middle class public. satirises heroic tragedy and so does Henry Fielding in his successful parody The Tragedy of Tragedies. who demanded models of virtue and decency. 1775. with idealised heroes and heroines divided between love and honour or duty. for instance. John Gay. or The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great (1731). 1665. The main representatives – the Restoration Wits* – were courtiers and aristocrats who assumed the role of leaders of fashion and taste. George Villiers. and Richard Brinsely Sheridan (The Rivals. The Conquest of Granada. 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. 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. or The Mistakes of a Night. Duke of Buckingham. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 19 . but serious drama declined during the 18th century. 1768. 1773). The School for Scandal. 1769).The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. Restoration comedy presented an elegant society. The best achievement in this genre belongs to John Dryden (The Indian Emperor. She Stoops to Conquer. Tragedy was replaced in popular taste by a form that stood in sharp contrast with the unheroic spirit of the age: heroic drama. but whose aim was not so much to correct manners as to entertain. a stylish and sophisticated world. Heroic drama The comedy of manners 1. In The Rehearsal (1671). There were a few attempts to revive classical tragedy or domestic tragedy. It lacked the latter’s liveliness and brilliance. and it denounced puritanical virtue as hypocrisy. 1669-70). Oliver Goldsmith (The GoodNatured Man.4. these plays built a world of high passion and incredible bravery. but also of French and Spanish romantic novels of adventure. were a passing extravagance. with their grandiose declamations and artificial conception of heroism. of pleasure-seeking and relaxation after the strict moral code imposed to the nation by the Puritans.g. in his satirical play The Beggar’s Opera (1728). 1722). too. which ridiculed them through exaggerated imitation. Alexander Pope) and in the novel (e. Under the influence of French tragedies. 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. Henry Fielding). This parodic spirit was not confined to drama: the mockheroic style* was also used in poetry (e. A more representative achievement of the Restoration is the comedy of manners. mocks at certain theatrical conventions.4. which continued the realistic spirit of the earlier satirical plays. Drama during the Restoration period Restoration drama developed in an age of scepticism and cynicism.g.
at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 20 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . to 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. revise subchapters 1.4. we shall focus on William Shakespeare’s later plays. Two moments in the evolution of English drama will be further detailed in this course: in Unit 2.2. together with their most outstanding representatives. If there should be major differences between them. and in Unit 4 you will be acquainted with more features of Restoration comedy.4.4.
The English translation of the Bible – the “Authorised Version” of 1611. Later in the century. Influence of Latin on prose style The prose of intellectual argument 1. a precious and highly ornate language. deliberately artificial and intricate. The language of prose tended to become plain and transparent. 1625) are prose classics in English literature.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. temptations. philosophical and theological writings. blending concision with wit. as the growing complexity of life increased the need for social and intellectual communication. influenced immensely Bunyan’s the language of prose. the virtues of common speech permeated the language of all kinds of writings. Under the influence of Latin – especially of Cicero* –. 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). weaknesses. contributing essentially to the forging of a more straightforward and simple style. More and more. English as an instrument of literary and intellectual communication still competed with classical Latin. Sermons were a widely popular form of prose-writing.5. with its trials. 1612. Francis Bacon was the first notable writer to plead for – and to illustrate – a prose style more suited for intellectual argument. prose works written in English displayed a highly rhetorical style. struggles and William Blake: aspirations. The development of an aphoristic style*. prepared the English language for a variety of uses: in scientific. Thomas Hobbes* and John Locke also insisted on the necessity of a language at once flexible and precise. The rhetorical extravagance and ingenuity which had still dominated the early 17th century (not only in prose). with its illustration to simplicity and natural flow of common speech. religious writings are particularly important. gave way to an ideal of prose style more suited to the Age of Common Man. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 21 . the universal language of the Renaissance. displaying a variety of styles.1. on clarity and rationality. Francis Bacon’s Essays (1597. Here. the essay* proved the most flexible. Journalism as a form of prose writing emerged during the Civil War and flourished during the 18th century. accomplished under the patronage of James I – established a model of English whose beauty. Gradually. Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Of the literary forms that contributed significantly to the development of English prose. another Latin influence began to mould English prose style: that of Seneca and Tacitus*. suitable for conveying “the knowledge of things” and intelligible to the average Englishman. in political tracts and pamphlets. This allegorical expression of Puritan faith. The evolution of prose style At the beginning of the 17th century. wealth and freshness greatly influenced the language of prose. in which rhetorical figures were subordinated to rational lucidity. he describes the Christian soul’s search for salvation in the form of an allegorical journey along the path of life.5. The Pilgrim’s Progress Among the prose forms widely used for intellectual argument.
spiritual biographies (John Bunyan. a prose genre whose model was provided by the Greek writer Theophrastus*. in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690). of remarkable precision and force. unadorned style.g. Anatomies were monuments of learning. 1644 – a famous defense of the freedom of the press). whose purpose was didactic or satirical. biographies (Izaak Walton. Like drama. the biography as an emerging prose genre. 1621) and Sir Thomas Browne (Religio Medici. diaries (John Evelyn. Milton’s Areopagitica. pamphlets* (e. “The Religion of a Doctor. To these must be added the character. This kind of approach had a considerable influence on the realistic novel. with his Life of John Donne among other works of this kind – 1670). The character as a prose genre influenced Richard Steele and Joseph Addison in their periodical essays. Samuel Pepys). 1666). 22 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . In the 17th century. which analyses the constitution of human society. William Prynne’s Histriomastix. aphoristic style. inclusive character is displayed by Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651).” 1642) are the most outstanding representatives of this genre. etc. which anticipates the prose of the Neoclassical period. Human character as portrayed in their essays was at the same time typical and individualised. another form of prose writing which displayed divergent tendencies in style was the anatomy. Joseph Hall inaugurated the English tradition of this genre. The same encyclopaedic.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. with Characters of Virtue and Vices (1608). letters. Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. Samuel Purchas). the spiritual autobiography and the “character” were literary expressions of the growing interest in human individuality. exhausting the subjects they dealt with. executed in a witty. the great literary achievement of the 18th century. 1632 – the most virulent Puritan attack on the theatre. but its impressive intellectual architecture is achieved in a simple. delighting in speculation and building the knowledge they explored into an elaborate structure. with its explorations of the complexities of human mind and character. Robert Burton (The Anatomy of Melancholy. “Characters” were miniature portraits of human types. A variety of other prose genres developed during the 17th century: historical and geographical accounts (Walter Raleigh.
the progress from the old order of the feudal world to the modern age was completed.5. and 1. Summary This unit has offered you a brief introduction to the intellectual and literary developments of the 17th and 18th centuries. marked the entrance into Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 23 . to the great movements of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. read again subchapters 1. If there should be major differences between them. modern science was born. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. since both place Man and the improvement of his condition at the centre of their concerns. A steady process of economic development and imperial expansion made England the world’s greatest power. you will learn more about the periodical essay. as well as the faith in progress. roughly. Culturally. in a paragraph of no more than 7 lines / 70 words. Within these two centuries. the growing scepticism and critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. while Unit 5 will deal entirely with the novel in the 18th century. The victory of Reason over dogmatism.. these two centuries correspond. at the end of the unit. more carefully. This was a period of great changes at all levels of life in England. The following units will detail some aspects concerning the development of prose in the two centuries: in Unit 4. the image of the universe was changed. Within these two centuries. between which there is continuity.1. obscurantism and intolerance. intellectual habits and preoccupations changed radically: philosophic thought became secular.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background SAQ 6 In what direction did English prose style tend to develop along the 17th and 18th centuries? Answer in the space below.5.
of the time of emperor Caesar Augustus (27 B. from a system of genres and styles dominated by classical influences to a more “democratic” tendency. and a major influence on their aesthetic ideal. Virgil – were revered models for the English Augustan writers. The birth of the novel is the most significant literary development of this “Age of Common Man. 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. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 24 .D.C. Ovid. in a caricatural spirit.” The short review of the dominant forms of poetry. predominantly middle-class.-14 A. burlesque: the exaggerated imitation. From a literary point of view. of serious action. used to express observations of general truth. blank verse: unrhymed verse. a slow transition took place. The Great Latin writers of that age – Horace. 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. often by means of paradox. elevated style. 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. noble and heroic characters. however. which are reduced to the comically trivial. and the emergence of the Age of Feeling prepared the way to the Romantic sensibility. with new genres accessible to a more inclusive reading public. It is. part of the process of modernisation that the Age of Reason came to acknowledge its own limits.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background modernity.).
The victory of the Parliamentary forces led to the abolition of monarchy in 1649.): “Man is the measure of all things”. individual liberty. • empiricism: a philosophical orientation which established the primacy of experience in the process of knowledge. 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. when it was restored. or from history. separation of powers were central to Enlightenment political. state church) as a reaction against the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 25 • . natural law. Thomas Paine (the United States) are among the great representatives of this movement. the folk tradition. Concepts like human rights. • Enlightenment: ideological and cultural movement in the 18th century in Europe and America. John Locke. • Elizabethan: related to the reign of Elizabeth I (1558-1603). Montesquieu. • essay: a prose composition of varying length. social contract. Thinkers like Thomas Hobbes. characterised by anti-dogmatism and the cult of reason as the supreme guiding principle in human action. which began as an educational programme (the humanities – humaniora) propagating those values in Greek and Latin culture which could be harmonised with Christian values. artistic and literary life of the Renaissance was defined by a revived interest in the classical culture and its ideals. Thomas Jefferson. by the promotion of intellectual emancipation and the belief in social and moral progress. The founders of English empiricism were Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) and John Locke (1632-1704). widely used in all ages. reconciling a materialist account of reality with a rationalist attitude (i. social and moral thought.e. • Evangelical Revival: a trend which started within the Anglican Church (the official. anti-obscurantism. civil rights. rejection of arbitrary authority and of absolutism are some of the characteristic attitudes of this age. • epic: long narrative poem celebrating the achievements of heroic personages. anti-fanaticism. Tolerance. Diderot (France). pragmatism. in which personal opinions and observations are presented in a formal or informal manner. Rousseau. it evokes an attitude to life which stresses the individual’s dignity. • classical revival: the intellectual. Voltaire. The open conflict between king and Parliament set the whole nation to war. legend. David Hume (Britain). The subjects and heroes are taken either from myth. until 1660. humanism.C. illustrating the close link between religion and politics in English history. and contributed to the intellectual preparation of the French Revolution (1789). The founder of the revival of classical learning was Petrarch (see note below). 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. It is one of the most flexible and adaptable prose forms.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. This return to the Ancients is the foundation of Renaissance humanism. worth and capacity for self-accomplishment. In a broader sense.
sumptuous costumes and settings. restraint. who was a Catholic. and harmony of classical art. It addressed itself to the poor.C. from the Creation to the Ascension. The actors used masks and personified pastoral or mythological figures. It was used in order to make a trivial subject seem dignified and impressive. encouraging a personal experience of conversion. a person or an object. idealising shepherd life and creating a nostalgic image of a peaceful. Jacobean: (from Latin Jacobus) related to the reign of James I Stuart (1603-1625). painting and sculpture. James II Stuart. The most famous author of masques in the 17th century (when the genre flourished) was Ben Jonson.C. Its conventions may be found not only in lyric poetry. the marginal sections of society. but also in Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 26 . an idea. often of an allegorical nature. simple. Glorious Revolution: in 1688. The basis of this kind of faith was the Gospel (the New Testament) and its revealed truth. the Neoclassic period is taken to cover almost a century (16601780). masque: courtly entertainment in dramatic form. founded by John Wesley in the 1740s. solemn style. with an elaborate stanza structure and a dignified. whose authors were deeply revered and were recommended as models. 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). This religious orientation developed into a church: the Methodist Church. and it was often a device of parody and of burlesque.).C. and soon developed into a distinct religious orientation. and corresponded to the rationalistic spirit of the 18th century. to its need for clarity and its aspiration to universality. The term also refers to the form in which such a work was published: a booklet with paper covers. of spiritual regeneration by grace. spectacular scenic effects. singing and dancing. uncorrupted life. was forced to leave the throne and fled to France. Neoclassicism meant a return to the purity. who collaborated with the equally famous architect and stage designer Inigo Jones. in harmony with nature. mock-heroic style: a style mocking the serious grandeur of the epic. decorative art. In architecture. involving elaborate dialogue. pastoral: a literary composition on a rural theme.) are the great ancient models for English writers. Neoclassicism flourished in the latter half of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. The origins of pastoral are in the work of the Greek poet Theocritus (316-260 B. pamphlet: a short prose work on a subject (often political or religious) that the author defends polemically. mystery plays: early popular forms of English drama (13th to 16th century) developed out of the Liturgy of the Church and enacting biblical events.) and the Latin poet Horace (658 B. expressing lofty sentiments and thoughts regarding an event. The Greek poet Pindar (522-442 B. ode: an extended lyric poem. Neoclassicism: an aesthetic doctrine inspired from classical Antiquity (especially Latin).The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • • • excessive rationalism in matters of faith. In English literature.
it overlaps with the Augustan Age.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • drama. selected according to genre and subject. It placed emphasis on the individual’s spiritual autonomy and creative potential. 1492). romance or the novel. industry. The Puritans insisted on man’s duty of actively serving God and on his responsibility towards his own conscience. which was to play an essential role in the rise of capitalism. centred on integrity. 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. tone. Pico della Mirandola. of the rebirth of learning. Sir Charles Sedley. its limits are less well defined. 27 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in their view. which opened the modern era. “The poetry of sensibility” is another generic term for these pre-Romantic tendencies. of America. Ariosto. which was the ultimate authority in the interpretation of God’s word in the Holy Scriptures. Cervantes (Spain). It is sometimes seen as extending to the end of the 17th century. Philip Sidney. Tasso (Italy). Shakespeare. for the Neoclassic writers. in the 16th and 17th centuries. by Columbus. Sir George Etherege. implied the idea that the language of poetry is different in quality from ordinary language. Lope de Vega. and brilliant accomplishments in scholarship and science. Boccaccio. it had not fully reformed itself. Desiderius Erasmus (Holland). it was the period of Charles II’s reign (1660-1685). thus. Duke of Buckingham. John Vanbrugh. on the enlargement of his knowledge of himself and of nature. and they continued to be used in the 18th century. From a literary point of view. Raphael. Machiavelli. effort. It is the period of transition from the Middle Ages and the feudal order to early capitalism. William Wycherley. Restoration: historically. when monarchy was re-established in England after the Puritan rule (1649-1660). Francis Bacon (England). poetic diction: a term that. “Wit” designates here the person who displays liveliness and brilliance of spirit. Romantic: the Romantic Age in England is usually considered to extend from the end of the 18th century to the 1830s. 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. Edmund Spenser. who rejected the authority of the English Church because. the sense of purpose. They propagated a doctrine of spiritual equality and cultivated a stern morality.g. especially their work ethics. and of the awakening of the reformist spirit. consisting in a tremendous development and transformation in all spheres. Restoration Wits: the generic name for the Restoration dramatists. The Renaissance was the age of the great geographical discoveries (e. Puritans: members of a Protestant religious group. It refers to the particular kind of language – vocabulary. favoured the growth of individualism. Thomas More. style – used by a poet. It was characterised by a remarkable flourishing of arts and literature. of the expansion of education. Prominent figures of the Renaissance are Petrarch. The most outstanding of the Restoration Wits (or Court Wits) were George Villiers. Leonardo da Vinci.
song: a poem composed for singing. independently of circumstances. During the Renaissance. He started his literary career as a playwright. The Romantic spirit is usually associated with the championship of progressive social and political causes. and black bile – or melancholy) were believed to determine a person’s disposition and character. the founder of modern rationalist materialism. in which the characters act. In mediaeval and Renaissance physiology and pathology. Edmund Spenser. the four “humours” (i. The New Atlantis (published in 1627). two fine examples of comedy of humours. the promoter of the new scientific spirit. the emphasis on the spontaneity of poetic inspiration are also among distinctive features of Romanticism. sonnet: a poem consisting of 14 lines. according to a dominating inclination or passion. 1591-1595). Jonson. as well as an unfinished utopia.C. fluids) of the body (blood. and a firm believer in man’s creative potential. yellow bile – or choler. His literary work includes a series of essays on a wide variety of subjects. The assertion of the self. 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. and with the French Revolution (1789). Renaissance dramatists used songs in their plays to create a particular atmosphere. poet and scholar. one of the most influential literary voices of his age. Astrophil and Stella. wit: intellectual brilliance and ingenuity. which emerged in Britain in the context of the sympathy with the struggle of the American colonies for independence from British domination (1775-1781). Amoretti.): Roman statesman. phlegm. Sometimes. Cicero. The tradition survived into the 18th century. 1591. philosopher and writer. His famous political speeches and writings Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 28 . Francis (1561-1626): the most influential thinker of the English Renaissance. The four traditional temperaments – sanguine. phlegmatic. in which he anticipates many of the later conquests of modern science. Ben (1572-1637): dramatist. the belief in the spiritual correspondence between man and nature.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • Romanticism is a European cultural and literary movement. choleric and melancholic – were seen as the result of the dominance of one of these humours. with Every Man in His Humour (1598) and Every Man Out of His Humour (1599). the capacity or talent of making unexpected. Marcus Tullius (106-43 B. Gallery of personalities • Bacon. The sonnet sequence/cycle was frequently used during the Renaissance (Sir Philip Sidney. with or without musical accompaniment. in the 17th century it came to mean fancy or liveliness of thought and imagination. surprising associations. with various rhyme patterns. This theory had a great influence on the conception of character in the 16th and 17th century comedy. and a writer. orator.e. the quality of a writing that displays this capacity. He was also an eminent statesman.
studied the mechanics of planetary motion and formulated the law of gravitation. the initiator of the revival of the study of ancient Greek and Latin literature. the “body politic” created in perfect analogy with the “body natural” of “that rational and most excellent work of nature. Theophrastus (372-287 B. For Hobbes. mathematician.C. whose conceptions were profoundly influenced by the development of physics and mathematics. John (1632-1704): considered the “father” of English empiricism. Locke insists on the mutual obligations of the individual and the instituted authority. Locke studied medicine.D. Tacitus. unlike that of Hobbes. the latter. Seneca. and man’s agreement to submit to a governing authority is an expression of that freedom. Locke was a firm supporter of the Glorious Revolution and of constitutional monarchy. religion. and Hobbes describes this generalised state of war by the famous formula “homo homini lupus” (“man is wolf to man”). made important discoveries in the field of optics. It is fear of death. economics. Hobbes applies rationalist-materialist principles to the explanation of human nature and society. besides the Characters. politics.-65 A. Petrarch: Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374). or the Matter. for instance.): Roman philosopher. the laws and regulations of human society imitate the laws of nature: the “great Leviathan” is the State.): Greek philosopher and naturalist.): Roman historian and statesman. of the first treatise of ancient philosophy. Isaac (1642-1727): English physicist.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • on rhetoric and style provided a model of eloquence in prose. but he was interested in a variety of intellectual fields: philosophy. Lucius Annaeus (4 B. Thomas (1588-1679): materialist philosopher. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 29 . must guarantee man’s natural right to liberty and life. Locke. astronomer and philosopher. Form and Power of a Commonwealth. author. According to him. Publius Cornelius (55-120 A. in a kind of social contract. Both Hobbes and Locke can be seen as the initiators of the “social contract” theory. ethics. chief figure of the scientific revolution of the 17th century. His political philosophy. greatly influenced by Hobbes. In his work of moral and political philosophy Leviathan. whose concise and trenchant style inspired 17th century English prose writers. He laid the foundations of the differential calculus. the instinct of self-preservation. Ecclesiastical and Civil (1651). Man. Newton. Hobbes. which was central to Enlightenment thought.D.C. insists on man’s perfect freedom in the state of nature. that determines man to surrender part of his natural rights to the authority of a civil government. humanity in the state of nature is driven by aggressive competition.” A fundamental problem for Hobbes is that of the foundation of the social and political order. Italian poet and humanist. writer and statesman. and his political doctrine inspired the American constitution.
Thomson. 6. Marvell. 115-141) 30 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Goldsmith. concision and plainness: from the highly ornate. Pope. Herbert.T.T. 3. 7-49) 3.T. Editura Universităţii Suceava.T SAQ 2 a. 3. 4. Goldsmith comedy of manners: the “Restoration Wits” (George Villiers. Cowper romantic comedy: Shakespeare dark comedy: Shakespeare tragi-comedy: Shakespeare. English Literature and Civilisation. 1983 (pp. Blake the ode: Marvell. Preda. Marvell satire: Dryden. Macsiniuc.F. 7. Fletcher and Beaumont satirical comedy: Ben Jonson. 9-32) 2. 2003 (pp. John Gay Further reading 1. Milton the pastoral: Milton.T. Collins.3. .F. 5. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. Pope. Duke of Buckingham.F. William Wycherley. The Literature of the Beginnings. Dryden. Milton. Herrick. the sonnet: Shakespeare. Sir George Sedley. The Novel in Its Beginnings. even extravagant style of the Renaissance to the simple elegance. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. artificial. 5. Luminiţa Elena.2. Goldsmith. b. c. 6. there was a tendency towards simplicity. Gray the epic: Milton metaphysical poetry: Donne.T. Sir George Etherege. Cumberland burlesque comedy: George Villiers. from a highly rhetorical style to forms of expression which aspired to the plainness of common speech.).F SAQ 5 • • • • • • • SAQ 6 In general.1 SAQ 3 • • • • • • • • • SAQ 4 1. Editura Universităţii Suceava. d.T. 2.F. The English Eighteenth Century.T.T. Cornelia. precision. 4. 8. Cowley. 2003 (pp. clarity and straightforwardness of the Augustan style.4. Dryden.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Turcu. Pope didactic poems: Pope philosophical poems: Pope descriptive-meditative poems: Thomson. Carew. Ioan-Aurel (ed. John Vanbrugh). Sheridan sentimental comedy: Steele. 2. Donne. Fielding.
3. 188.8.131.52. 2. 2. 2.4.2. 2.7.8. 2.6. 2. His later plays The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s great tragedies Hamlet: a revenge play Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility in Hamlet Hamlet: the philosopher vs.2.1. 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.The late Renaissance and the Baroque UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE Unit Outline 2 184.108.40.206.12. 2. 2. 220.127.116.11.2. 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. 2.3. 2. 2. 2. 2. 18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124. 2.2. 126.96.36.199.2.3.3. 2. 188.8.131.52. 2. 184.108.40.206.5.5. 220.127.116.11.1.2.
Christopher Marlowe*. The former expansiveness. The emergence of the baroque sensibility The early and high Renaissance* in England developed under the Tudor monarchs*. High Renaissance English literature has its most accomplished expression in Shakespeare’s work. this spirit declined under the pressure of certain historical events* and cultural tendencies. Philip Sydney*. Renaissance England reached the climax in its flourishing. Under Queen Elizabeth I. 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. well-ordered universe. stable and modern state. The Elizabethan age: the English high Renaissance Features of the high Renaissance spirit 32 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . to the perception of man as a bundle of contradictions and the view of the universe as threatened by instability.The late Renaissance and the Baroque By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ define the characteristic aspects of the baroque sensibility ♦ compare the Renaissance and the baroque visions on man and the universe ♦ compare aspects of Renaissance and baroque literary taste in the 17th century ♦ explain the baroque character of the main themes and motifs in Shakespeare’s tragedies ♦ identify patterns of symbolism and imagery in the studied plays by Shakespeare ♦ describe the main features of metaphysical poetry ♦ explain what a metaphysical conceit is ♦ analyse the use of conceits in poems by John Donne and Andrew Marvell ♦ point out the elements of baroque sensibility in the poetry of Donne and Marvell Unit objectives 2. In the late Renaissance. Increasingly prosperous and powerful owing to colonial expansion and economic progress. to scepticism. The spirit that dominated this age was typical of the Renaissance. anxiety and even pessimism. the sense of tradition as a guarantee for order. and Edmund Spenser* complete the literary picture of the glorious Elizabethan Age. idealism and confidence gave way to a growing sense of disorder and violence. The vision of a harmonious. with its sense of confidence and optimism. Elizabethan England also witnessed an explosion of creative energies in the field of letters and arts. but the outstanding achievements of writers like Thomas Kyd*.1. during whose reign England developed into a strong.
with the tendency of breaking proportions. St. The baroque vision of experience of the Metaphysical Poets required a new kind of poetic language. contrasts with the baroque taste for the extravagant. the concentration of expression in their poems stand in contrast with the Elizabethan smooth and orderly patterns of versification. or the world as stage. they are the supreme dramatic achievement of late Renaissance. and not properly forming a “school. nothing reflects better its emergence than drama. its sense of form. the Baroque displayed a sharp consciousness of life’s ephemerality. sensualism and mysticism. The Renaissance cult of rational order. both in its themes and motifs. The best examples are Thomas Kyd’s revenge tragedy.” these poets distinguish themselves by the ingenuity with which they force the limits of language. splendour. Characteristic baroque themes were those of life as dream and life as theatre. and in its dramatic conception. Shakespeare’s early comedies and history plays* are Elizabethan in spirit. Although very diverse. with its abundance of bloody deaths. the paradoxes and contrasts which make up man’s mixed nature. irony and ambiguity. refinement and cruelty. on which the “show” of life must end. Even the Elizabethan dramatists cultivated elements which announced the Baroque. Characteristic of the baroque spirit are the sense of ethical relativism and the exploration of the borderline between truth and illusion. striking imagery. in literature. wisdom and madness. In lyric poetry. to the macabre. proportion and symmetry.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry The essence of the baroque sensibility is conflict and tension. life and death. but also to pomp. capable of rendering its 33 Revenge tragedy Metaphysical poetry Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the extensive use of paradox. The Renaissance celebrated Nature and life with its joys. The Baroque displays attraction to obscurity and melancholy. a tendency commonly associated with the baroque is represented by the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. The unexpected. and Christopher Marlowe’s characters. for excess. and. destroyed by the monstrous excess of their ambition. grandeur. ornamental rhetoric and preference for convention and artifice. but his great tragedies belong not only chronologically to the Jacobean age: as embodiments of the baroque spirit.1. the tragic divisions in man’s soul. of man’s limitations and the inevitability of death. Paul’s Cathedral in London (16751708): an example of baroque architecture 2. 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. the spectacular and the sumptuous.1.2. The Jacobean and Caroline drama* is essentially baroque. reason and superstition. of confusing or transgressing limits. the difficult – often irregular – rhythms.1.
R: vision of the world as harmonious and well-ordered B: 2. read again the preceding subchapters. at the end of this unit. 34 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . exuberance B: Compare your answers to those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. R: cult for order and symmetry. respectively. with the two most relevant accomplishments of the late Renaissance English literature: William Shakespeare’s great tragedies (Hamlet. sense of form B: 4. 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. and it is appealing simultaneously to the sensibility and the intellect of the reader. If there should be major differences. The Tempest. as expressions of the baroque spirit of the age. classical balance. optimism. R: celebration of life’s joys B: 3. Metaphysical poetry blends passion and reason. Othello and Macbeth) and his last romance play. R: confidence. complicated feeling and analytical detachment. King Lear. as well as some of the metaphysical poems of John Donne and Andrew Marvell.The late Renaissance and the Baroque complexities. you will be acquainted.
jealousy. The richness and profundity of his comprehensive creation establish him as a universal genius. devotion. medieval and contemporary sources – English. Shakespeare had a natural instinct for the stage. He was not original in the use of his subjects: with a few exceptions. and French. etc.” Shakespeare’s work is conventionally divided into several phases. romantic or trivial. In Shakespeare’s whole work. The beginning of the 17th century is also the beginning of his second phase (1600-1608). from the variety of his work. A wide range of feelings. motifs and imagery. sometimes even trivial. to the prose speech of simple folk. Shakespeare modulates the language in each play. and experiences are given dramatic shape in his plays: love. Shakespeare’s whole work is a synthesis of the concerns and convictions of the Renaissance. His later plays Shakespeare’s greatness as a dramatist comes. It ranges from the sublime accents of pure poetry. Othello (1604). King Lear and Macbeth (1605). and a perfect adequacy of the language to the character’s moral nature and to the dramatised experience or emotion. A whole human universe inhabits Shakespeare’s plays. In his last period of creation (1608-1611). his deep understanding of humanity. gratitude and ingratitude. language. states of mind. or periods of creation. These plays may be seen as strongly influenced by the emerging baroque sensibility in their themes. His inventiveness and imagination were invested not in the intrigues. loyalty and betrayal.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. rendered accurately in their poetic truth. in which every character – major or minor – has a consistent individuality and is animated by passions. search for truth. in the great blank verse* soliloquies*. among other features. when his artistic maturity and depth of vision produced his four monumental tragedies: Hamlet (1601). as well as in the tragic grandeur of the inner conflicts that they portray. there is an astonishing variety of styles and registers. conflicts. all of them are re-workings and adaptations of subjects taken from a variety of ancient. envy. and a culmination of its literary art. where the lyrical and dramatic elements are in perfect fusion. sublime or burlesque. but his enduring preeminence has been insured by his extraordinary insight into human nature. hate. so that it displays a similar variety. 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 . According to the dramatic necessity. Shakespeare’s genius. friendship. in plain. craftsmen or servants. They are always credible. transcending the artistic hierarchy of his age and consecrating him as always “our contemporary. aspirations and interests. and the range of his subjects is extremely diverse. struggle for power. which brought him enormous success during his lifetime.2. moral attitudes. irrespective of the register in which they are conceived – tragic or comic. His characters emerge from the dramatic situation with an unsurpassed force of conviction. Italian. He was a master of every contemporary dramatic form. all mastered with supreme art. but in the creation of characters and the exploration of their mind and heart.
with the restoration of order.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The last period: the romance plays tragedies. but they deal. SAQ 2 Answer the following questions.1. If they should differ significantly. as far as his approach to character is concerned? 2. with the effects of evil on innocence. His romance plays. the downfall of the tragic hero is accompanied by the destruction of a natural order. 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.2. of which The Tempest (1611) is the crowning achievement. in no more than 4 lines / 40 words each: 1. common in the Renaissance. with the sense of hope overcoming spiritual desolation. are also tributary to the spirit of the Baroque. basically. What does Shakespeare’s greatness consist in. read again the preceding subchapter. He is concerned here with the paradoxes in the relationship between reality and appearance. at the end of the unit. but he adds to it philosophical and ethical implications of the deepest significance. In these plays. 2. with the consequences of imperfect knowledge and self-blindness. with innocence and vitality triumphing over evil and death. 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 human endeavour to understand if suffering is part of the 36 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s tragedies Shakespeare’s tragedies preserve the pattern of the “fall of princes”*. between truth and falsehood. by the chaos arising from the corruption and collapse of values.
The enlargement of meaning through consistent patterns of imagery running throughout each play.3. has drowned herself. Sir Laurence Olivier in Hamlet (1948) 2. It is in these four great tragedies that Shakespeare gives the full proof of his artistic genius. the play ends on a note of hope. he has the occasion to kill Claudius. Polonius is the father of beautiful Ophelia.2. in the confusions of the final scene. Shakespeare deals with his great tragic themes in the frame of a revenge tragedy.The late Renaissance and the Baroque natural order of things or if it betrays the indifference of Nature – or God – towards man. when Fortinbras. the masterful treatment of highly complex characters. Sent on a diplomatic mission to England. takes over the rule of Denmark. that he had actually been poisoned by his brother. with a poisoned sword. bringing in the prospect of renewal and of the restoration of order. brave. who had really gone mad. generous and brilliantly intelligent. the Norwegian prince and glorious military hero. all the main protagonists find their death. absorbed more and more by his consciousness of the paradoxes of his difficult task of exposing the truth. During the play. accepts Claudius’s treacherous plan of killing Hamlet during a duel. Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility Hamlet has been seen as the embodiment of the ideal Renaissance prince – refined and cultivated. a courtier. Upon his return to Denmark from his university studies. Hamlet learns that Ophelia. he kills Polonius. young prince Hamlet learns from the ghost of his recently dead father. Hamlet feels all his certainties destroyed. the first in this series of masterpieces. old king Hamlet. rejected by Hamlet in spite of their mutual affection. and with the immense burden of revenge. Her brother. but refrains from doing it as the latter was in prayer. Confronted with the moral corruption around him.2. Claudius’s guilty conscience betrays him. In order to find confirmation for the ghost’s story. but the plot escapes their control and. Claudius. required by his dead father. Hamlet hides his terrible grief behind the mask of madness. and continually delays the act of revenge. who suspects him of aspiring to take his throne. which represents a similar scene of murder. Hamlet: a revenge play In Hamlet. who was now the new king and who had married Gertrude. 2.2. sensitive and idealistic. In spite of this bloody outcome. mistaking him for Claudius. Young Hamlet is thus confronted with the horrors of fratricide and incest. Hamlet arranges a play to be performed at court. Laertes. as he now sees in her only another embodiment of woman’s frailty. At one point. the intensity of poetic expression – especially in the soliloquies – are features that rank these plays highest in the whole history of the genre. In another scene. His Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 37 . Hamlet escapes a criminal plot set up by Claudius. the widow queen. Back to the castle.
his obsessive quest for truth and certainty.4. 38 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Compare your answer with the suggestions offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the balance and confidence of the Renaissance man have been replaced by scepticism and mistrust. at the end of the unit. which is only partly dissimulated. It allows the hero to take distance from the corrupt order of the “prison” that Denmark has become for him. from the Reader contains a short meditation on man and the universe. Madness becomes the refuge of the sensitive conscience from moral chaos. is eminently a philosopher’s effort. and this may explain his indefinite postponing of the revenge.2. What is the essence of this divided view? Formulate your answer in the space left below. the man of action Hamlet’s penetrating spirit has discerned a reality of human nature that he had not suspected. The sign of this confusion is the typically baroque motif of Hamlet’s madness. In Hamlet’s tormented soul. read again the preceding subchapter. SAQ 3 Text 2. Hamlet: the philosopher vs.The late Renaissance and the Baroque new consciousness that “something’s rotten in Denmark” plunges him into a nightmare.1. as well as the indicated fragment. in which all the values on which he had relied have lost their meaning. If they should differ significantly. and this makes him now aware of the ironies and ambiguities inherent in the discrepancy between what is and what seems. revealing Hamlet’s dualistic vision. 2. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. His effort to see beyond the veil of illusion.
if there is a purpose for its existence in the world of man. son of Lear’s loyal supporter. questioning side is exacerbated by the irruption of evil in a universe that he had thought well-ordered. as in Hamlet. The earl of Gloucester joins them. whom he disinherits. to the themes of knowledge and self-knowledge.2. Lear strives to understand the roots of evil.5. 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 . and he is thus reunited with his son without knowing it. which is that of restoring a lost order. The storm scenes in the play contain the highest symbolic concentration. Goneril and Reagan. Hamlet’s introspective. in reality. Lear becomes the victim of the ingratitude of his two elder daughters. unconditionally loving ones. is also an exile from his own family. of setting right again the “time” which is “out of joint. which has been interpreted in innumerable ways. The storm outside matches the storm in Lear’s hurt soul. as his father has been deceived by his other son Edmund. Tragically. who is disguised as a lunatic beggar. who deprive him of all prerogatives and turn him out of their castles. 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. Maddened with grief. is closely linked. through paradox. King Lear: the madness of tragic grief King Lear. These explorations become more important than the technical matter of revenge. which hide much wisdom under the appearance of playful nonsense. a bastard. the quest for higher meanings. and. after his eyes have been put out for having helped Lear. His intellectual energies are now concentrated in his search for the meaning of the ultimate questions of life and death. The motif of madness.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The delay of Hamlet’s revenge his incapacity to act. there is madness in nature itself. both of them prove to be the loyal. like that of blindness. of human suffering. which would not undo the past. the Earl of Gloucester. like Lear’s daughter Cordelia. Hamlet feels overwhelmed by the real task that he is called to fulfil. Edgar. 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. exiled Lear wanders in a terrible storm in the company of Edgar. Lear’s own madness. to believe him a traitor and usurper. Disappointed by the reticence of his youngest daughter. he is wondering: “Is there a cause in nature that makes these hard hearts?” Edgar’s disguised madness. another “fall of princes” tragedy. are skilfully brought together and create a new ironic dimension in the play. of truth and illusion.” 2. is the victim of a staged play of appearances. marks in fact a growth in his moral understanding. Cordelia. Edgar. and the Fool’s comments. which helps him endure his suffering. on the other hand.
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). faithfulness/betrayal. In Othello. 2. Othello is thrown into the terrible agony of suspecting that beauty and innocence might disguise corruption. and its outburst is always accompanied by the awakening of the tragic hero’s consciousness of the divorce between seeming and being. a brave and honest general of the Venetian republic. With his mind poisoned by a false evidence of Desdemona’s infidelity. acting against it. unfaithful.6. To be or to seem: Othello Evil coming from those who are naturally closest to us is intolerable. As a result of Iago’s manipulations. In Othello. the bond of a love marriage is the frame in which Shakespeare explores the theme of evil in connection with that of appearance vs. Othello kills her and takes his own life when her innocence is proved to him. evil succeeds precisely because of the perfection of Desdemona’s purity and Othello’s trusting nature. and the tragic disaster shows how the play of appearances can dissolve firm moral opposites like truth/lie. and this destroys his confidence in a moral order. Evil is that which destroys Nature. Claudius’s fratricide and the cruelty of Lear’s daughters are transgressions which turn the tragic hero’s world upside down. is led by Iago to believe his wife. essence.2. The noble protagonist. Othello. Scene from Othello.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Evil as destruction of the “natural” order unnatural acts which violate this order. Desdemona. innocence/guilt. painted by James Graham (early 17th century) 40 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
since it accompanies the hero’s revelation of the discrepancy between appearance and reality. it bleeds. paradoxically. Macbeth’s conscience soon starts accusing him. underlining the theme of knowledge. The effects of this sacrilege against Nature are devastating. ____________________ Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. Read them carefully and fill in the indicated space with the right title(s). he multiples his crimes. The storm scenes intensify symbolically the hero’s tragic sense of confusion. the horror of evil is amplified by the fact that the protagonist’s crime is committed against Duncan as his king. which constitutes a violation of the natural (therefore moral) order. is manipulated into confusion about truth and falsehood. but. Macbeth’s ambitions are inflamed by the prediction of three witches that he shall be king of Scotland.2. kinsman and guest. 2. ____________________ 4.7. to 2.6.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. The protagonist.2. ____________________ 5. arranging the murder of all those who might threaten his power. innocence and corruption. disorder. ____________________ 3.2.” The imagery* of disease is extended to the protagonist’s conscience. Persuaded by his wife to hasten the fulfillment. you need to revise subchapters 2. and she is destroyed by the unbearable Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 41 . kills the sleeping king and takes the throne. / It weeps. illusion and truth. 1. There is “no sweet oblivious antidote” to cure Lady Macbeth’s “diseased” mind either. who has a trusting nature. ____________________ 2. a brave and worthy general in Duncan’s army. The baroque motif of madness is. invaded by “horrible imaginings” and hallucinations. If any of your solutions should not correspond. at the instigation of his wife. and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds. and unmotivated violence and cruelty.2. The hero’s exacerbated introspective tendency makes him postpone action. The evil reverberates in the whole land: in the words of Malcolm. The theme of evil is dramatised as a crime against the bonds of blood. one of Duncan’s sons. Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience In Macbeth. Macbeth. “Our country sinks beneath the yoke.
and he meets his punishment in the final battle.The late Renaissance and the Baroque burden of sin. Macbeth joins his wife after he has killed Duncan. from the Reader. His words to Lady Macbeth render his first thoughts after the murder. Macbeth’s heroic strength of will enables him to survive the terrible inner torments. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. scene 2. extracted from this scene.” heard immediately after he has committed the murder? What does sleep represent for Macbeth here? Answer in the space left below. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. read the fragment once more. who ends up by losing the belief in any meaning of life. 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. SAQ 5 In Act II. 42 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2. / Macbeth does murder sleep. from which the ultimate relief is suicide. reveals how soon the abominable crime has begun to work on his spirit. in no more than 120 words / 12 lines. How can we interpret Macbeth’s hallucination about the voice crying “Sleep no more. If there should be significant differences. Text 2. 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.
2. and The Tempest – are described either as tragi-comedies or as romance plays. 43 John William Waterhouse: Miranda –The Tempest (1916) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The Winter’s Tale. on which he lives alone with his daughter. owing to the improbability of the action. a creature whose beastly nature is beyond Prospero’s attempt of educating him. and certain themes and motifs (e. separated from each other in various parts of the island and all believing the others dead. a storm wrecks the ship carrying Antonio. 2. Caliban hates and fears Prospero. Another sub-plot brings together Ferdinand and Miranda. the last expression of Shakespeare’s mature genius. these plays offer patterns of reconciliation and positive solutions to life’s contradictions.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. Miranda. and Sebastian. magic. a drunken servant. the shipwreck.2. the jester. the long journey. Cymbeline. Prospero is the former and legitimate duke of Milan. to take his throne. They may also be described as romance plays. are encouraged by Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the rule of the island. and his supernatural powers have given him control over both the natural elements and the spirits. has turned him into a slave. respectively –. king of Naples. of exile and return). by his powers. or tension and suspense followed by happy reversals – features that make them tragi-comedies. Alonzo. Sebastian and Ferdinand – Alonzo’s brother and son. Alonzo. He had long studied the arts of magic. who. while for physical labour he uses Caliban.8. who instantly fall in love with each other. In a plot-line that parallels and parodies the latter. but his plan is prevented by Ariel’s music. marvelous. We soon find out that the storm and shipwreck have been magically provoked by Prospero. duke of Milan.9. as well as other passengers. involving the shipwrecked characters. their plots contain characteristic ingredients like dangers which are finally avoided. The plot of The Tempest Of these four plays. is considered the finest. In its opening scene. Trinculo. Three lines of action develop. They mix serious and comic action. his faithful spiritservant. His acts of magic are fulfilled through Ariel. the choice of a remote setting. usurped by his brother Antonio and forced into exile twelve years before. the fairy-tale atmosphere. myth. Shakespeare’s last plays Shakespeare’s four plays belonging to his last period of creation (1608-1611) – Pericles. the pronounced elements of the supernatural. One of these sub-plots involves the courtiers: Antonio persuades Sebastian to kill his sleeping brother. the master of an island. After the tragedies. the theme of loss and recovery. It is also in these last plays that Shakespeare’s dramatic imagination relies to a greater extent on symbolism. the sense of a benevolent providential design.g. The Tempest (1611).
assumes a certain responsibility for his own dethronement: absorbed in his studies. a “thing of darkness.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Prospero’s initial plan had been revenge. Ariel is commanded to bring all the characters before Prospero. whose youth and innocence are the premises for the undoing of the wrongs of the past. now. for the emergence of a regenerated world.” who can be controlled only by the art of magic. He forgives his treacherous brother and those involved in his usurpation. he regains his authority and learns again the arts of power. at the end.” “on whose nature / Nurture [i. and then to Milan.” claiming his throne. but.e.” he had also failed to see his brother’s true character. “neglecting worldly ends. the scholar-magician. On the island. Major themes An important theme in The Tempest is that of the nature of power. The theme of power Ariel vs. His act of forgiveness is the highest demonstration of princely power. represents pure spirit. Prospero plans a safe return to Naples for the wedding of Miranda and Ferdinand. the control of intelligence over nature. or of the wickedness of the servant turning against his master. 2. one of Shakespeare’s most fascinating creations.10. the personification of Prospero’s imagination. Caliban Innocence vs. he has a change of heart and sees in the union of the lovers a possibility of reconciliation and of a new beginning. he learns. In the final act. to master himself. The grossest instincts of human nature and a fundamental viciousness are symbolically embodied in the grotesque figure of Caliban. influenced by Ariel. evil Elizabeth Green – Ariel: The Tempest (1922) 44 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Prospero. Prospero’s project acquires a wider dimension through the union of Ferdinand and Miranda.2. Evil is not absent in The Tempest: there are echoes of Shakespeare’s previous plays in the motif of the usurping brother planning murder. who reveals himself to them as “the wronged duke of Milan. and to return to the world in his full humanity. At the opposite pole. who now repent. The power of innocence to redeem evil and restore order and the values of humanity is another important theme. While Caliban and the plotting courtiers and servants demonstrate that both nature and society are capable of corruption. education] can never stick. to break his staff (symbol of supernatural power) and to drown his book (symbol of supernatural knowledge). more importantly. in Ferdinand and Miranda civilisation and nature are united in their most innocent forms. and it is significant that this act is accompanied by his decision to abandon his magic. Ariel.
Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. Prospero reminds Caliban that he did his best to raise him from his animal condition.4. of the role of language in acquiring knowledge. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. extracted from The Tempest. If there should be major differences. or in developing self-identity. Act I. scene 2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 45 . Formulate your answer in 150 words / 15 lines. Here. Full of resentment. What implications can you find in their exchange of replies? You may think. read the fragment again. more carefully.. by teaching him to speak.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 6 Read Text 2. for instance. Caliban answers that the only benefit of being able to speak is that he can now curse Prospero.
The miraculous survival of the ship’s passengers. Ariel – illustration to the 1873 edition of The Works of Shakespeare 46 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Another pervading symbol is that of music. comforts Ferdinand’s despair when he thinks his father dead.11. Symbols in The Tempest Several symbolic elements contribute to the treatment of the themes in The Tempest. sublimating its primitive energies. Shakespeare’s last masterpiece seems to suggest that if life is transient like a theatre performance. and prevents the wicked plots of both the courtiers and the drunken servants. In opposition with the convulsions and dangers of the tempest. then at least man should strive to discern in it.12. This emphasis on spectacle and its power to reveal truths by its illusion constitutes a baroque element in The Tempest. and it is constantly associated with the magic actions of Ariel. It is through music that he calms down the fury of the waters. suggests the victory of life over death and of spirit over the elemental power of nature. Even Caliban seems to be responsive to the “sounds and sweet airs” of the island. 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. but an important symbolic ingredient in its major events. manipulates the characters and prescribes the ending. whose magic art controls every incident. and it even contains (like Hamlet) a play within the play: a masque* performed as a celebration of Ferdinand and Miranda’s engagement. The title itself points to the importance of the symbolism of the sea-journey.2. The sea-journey and shipwreck are the symbols of a “sea change”*. order and harmony.2. a profound spiritual transformation and growth. is frequent in Shakespeare’s plays. The play-metaphor The action in The Tempest is practically managed by Prospero. music suggests harmony and the power of the spirit to purify human nature.” The sea-journey Music 2. Music is not only a necessary element in the spectacular quality of The Tempest. the same features as those of the Renaissance aesthetic ideal: beauty. of performance. the association of life with the insubstantiality and briefness of a theatre show.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. The whole play insists on the idea of spectacle. which “delight and hurt not. Prospero also needs “some heavenly music” to accomplish the final act of his plan. The playmetaphor. or to impose upon it.
The contemporaries referred to their poetry as “strong lines. T F 7. except that of terrifying him. applied to certain poets of the early and mid-seventeenth century.2. 1. staged and managed by Prospero through his magic art. T F 3. T F Make sure your answers are right by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. John Donne and Andrew Marvell illustrate best the baroque sensibility of the 17th century in their themes and expressive strategies. combines an outstanding intellectual brilliance with lyric grace.9 to 2. A baroque feature of The Tempest is the emphasis on the theatrical quality of the action.12. in his own way.3. Two essential symbolic elements contribute to the development of the theme of regeneration: the sea-journey and music. Ferdinand and Miranda represent the innocent young generation capable of renewing Prospero’s former world. Prospero intends to use his magic power and supernatural knowledge in his regained authority as duke of Milan. 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. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 47 . If any of your choices should be wrong. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false) for each sentence. T F 6. Their styles are different.” and many disliked its cultivated difficulty. 2. The metaphysical poets The term metaphysical. T F 4. The power of music has no effect on Caliban. revise subchapters2. at the end of the unit.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 7 Let us remember a few things about The Tempest. The betrayal of his brother and the plotting of the courtiers on the island were severely punished by Prospero.2. T F 5. and this makes them both masters of metaphysical wit. was first intended to bring discredit on them. but each of them. T F 2. of which three are false. You must find them among the following statements.
by the ingenuity with which they forced the perception of similarity in the most unexpected elements. linked.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.e. The metaphysical conceit The poetic device by which such opposites are brought together and reconciled is the conceit. but metaphysical conceits were far-fetched* comparisons. united] by violence together. the poet was able to reconcile contradictory states of mind and feeling. This is an elaborate figurative device. argumentative quality. which is developed through the exploitation of an image in all its possible implications. Samuel Johnson* was to describe (in 1779) the kind of wit which characterised a metaphysical conceit as discordia concors*. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Discordia concors 48 . and almost always such a poem starts from a very personal situation. as well as in ordering and mastering intense emotion. Starting with the last decade of the 16th century.” A new kind of poetry emerged. The main features of metaphysical poetry are concentration and logical coherence. which starts from a comparison. regardless of the subject of the poem. and a blend of the commonplace and the sublime.1.2. The impression is that this experience. meant to surprise and delight the reader by their wit*. conceits were abundant in Elizabethan dramatic and lyrical poetry. but also his reason. as “a combination of dissimilar images.” Conceits were effective instruments in developing an argument and in rendering complication and subtlety of thought. often extended by the use of hyperbole* or oxymoron*. from a most ordinary circumstance. or discovery of occult [i. all metaphysical poets are self-conscious and analytic. There is always a connection between the abstract and the concrete.” as “the most heterogeneous ideas yoked [i. secret] resemblances in things apparently unlike.e. By means of conceits. and to unify diverse and even discordant aspects of inner and outer reality into a single experience. “More matter and less words” 2. is contemplated from a certain distance. Irrespective of the kind of experience they endeavour to render.3. to bring not only his imagination and emotion into play. Dr. and the emotions involved. writers had to face a new exigency. that the poet detaches himself from his own feelings in order to better understand and analyse them. a demand for “more matter and less words.3. As extended comparisons. with patterns of rhythms closer to those of spoken language than to the requirements of literary tradition. The reader is expected to approach such a poem with an active mind. a metaphysical poem is not a piece of abstract thinking. A poem in this tradition is usually focused on an idea or line of argument. which was in fact the expression of a new spiritual context. Characteristics of metaphysical poetry Metaphysical poetry displayed a new quality of writing. hidden. which helps the poet to develop his subject. The thought goes hand in hand with the feeling. and which blended expressive conciseness with density of meaning. a metaphor or an analogy. In spite of its logical. a cold intellectual exercise.
1.2.3. pastoral* conventions. and the same realistic force. and allegory. the two most outstanding representatives of this poetic trend in the 17th century. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 49 . He rejected the regular versification of Elizabethan poetry . Donne displays the same sophisticated wit. and created a style which had the vigour and liveliness of colloquial speech. and which confers dramatic realism to his poems. Each answer should not exceed 2 lines / 20 words.3. In the following subchapters. its decorative use of classical mythology. in poems belonging to John Donne and Andrew Marvell. 2. and both are explored in the whole richness and variety of their possible experiences. ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.3.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 8 Order the main aspects describing metaphysical poetry into four essential features. If they should differ considerably. at the end of the unit. revise subchapters 2. and a highly original one. you will look at some famous examples of metaphysical conceits. Two important themes in his poetic work are love and faith. and 2. In the treatment of both themes.3. the same blend of ingenious reasoning and intense passion. Use the space left below. Themes in John Donne’s poetry John Donne is one of the most influential poets of the 17th century.
Chaste. in which the lover tries to persuade his mistress not to cry at his imminent departure. Mingling the trivial with the mystical sublime. Donne’s love poems In his love poems. he pleads that she should abandon the intransigence of the chaste.” “tear-floods”). and he seems to amuse himself. sometimes presenting woman as inconstant and unfaithful. unattainable lady and enjoy the pleasures of sensuality. 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. which.” He tries to persuade his mistress not to kill the flea. Their superior love is founded on spiritual union and is not dependent on physical presence for its survival. These are conceits which illustrate the preference of the metaphysical poets for analogies between the macrocosm and the (human) microcosm.” In fact. in which their blood is now mixed.” their separation must be seen in analogy with cosmic disturbances (“the trepidation of the spheres”). A famous poem celebrating shared love is A Valediction*: Forbidding Mourning. and often emphasising the need for mutual love. carrying the lover’s witty arguments to their logical extremes. sometimes speaking frankly of his erotic desire. superior – woman was an object of never fulfilled desire. their love being so great and “refined. He also suggests sometimes that physical union. shocking the reader by the unexpected analogy developed in the central conceit (the flea as symbolic marriage bed). The various comparisons and analogies by which he describes their love function as arguments in his plea. Donne adopts a wide range of tones and attitudes.3.4. dealing with profound personal feeling and emotion from the distance of intellectual argument. though greater. but. may afford an experience of the transcendental. Donne changes this conventional vision of love. and all that the faithful lover could hope for were symbolic rewards and favours for his constancy and humble submission. Crying over their separation would bring to mind an analogy with earthly disasters (“sigh-tempests. Donne’s rejection of the Petrarchan tradition A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning The Flea: seduction and wit 50 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . according to which woman was always an unattainable ideal. in which the speaker brings all his argumentative skill in support of his attempt to convince the woman to accept physical intimacy. from cynicism and playfulness to passionate sincerity and the celebration of both physical love and spiritual union. This is a seduction poem. His love poetry is revolutionary in its rejection of the Petrarchan* conventions of courtly love*. when accompanied by genuine feeling. Donne is highly playful in this poem. beautiful. are however harmless to man. Another powerful example of Donne’s use of logical argument in a poem about love is The Flea. he resorts to the extravagant identification of a flea that has bitten both of them with their “marriage bed” and a “marriage temple. The poem celebrates the stability and comfort of a secure relationship.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. as this would be a triple “sin.
The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 9 Read Donne’s poem (Text 2. which explains what a metaphysical conceit is.2. as well. Read the poem again.. If they should differ significantly. you need to revise subchapter 2. Explain the surprising analogy that he makes in order to speak about mutual love. Here.6. in no more than 18 lines / 180 words. paying special attention to the last three stanzas. he develops one of his most famous conceits. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 51 . Formulate your answer in the space left below.3. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. in the Reader).
The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. These poems usually display contrary impulses. which makes him a prisoner of God’s enemy.3. on death. 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. Actually. gives this sonnet a particular dramatic intensity. resurrection and salvation. Satan. one of Donne’s nineteen Holy Sonnets. In his religious meditations in verse. between the need for permanence and the need for variety. which parallel those in his love poetry. paradoxical aspects of the experience of love. in which the poet’s desire to abandon himself to God’s love is rendered through paradoxical images. on the paradoxes of freedom and captivity. for the divine saving grace. of loyalty and betrayal. The most eloquent example is the sonnet Batter My Heart. in the exercise of reason. as if suggesting that the experience of erotic union is the only way of understanding our relationship with God. Batter My Heart Portrait of John Donne (1572-1631) (author unknown) 52 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .5. Donne’s focus is on his deep sense of sin. in which the poet expresses his deep need for a close relationship with God. The insistence on violence and struggle. in which the delight in witty logical argumentation. If love is often a holy mystery for Donne. divine judgement. clashes with the poet’s scepticism that the mystery of faith can be penetrated intellectually. Donne’s religious poems Donne’s baroque sensibility is evident in his love poems in the tension between conflicting. comparable to that of Shakespeare. this need is expressed by means of several conceits. Tension and paradox are also explored in his religious poems. He fights against his own sense of sin and guilt. between idealised passion and erotic desire. In Batter My Heart.
2. As a Puritan* patriot. living through the turbulent years of the Civil War*. In the last six lines.7.5. Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode The last of the metaphysical poets. Marvell left.6. If there should be significant differences. Andrew Marvell combines in his poetic work the sophistication of metaphysical wit with the elegance and grace of classical forms and attitudes. This meditation on political conflict and national history is impressive by its clarity and controlled variations of tone. the greatest of political poems in English literature: An Horatian Ode* upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland (written in 1650). and love of country. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 53 . paradoxical feelings by means of a conceit which exploits metaphorically the contrast between marriage and rape. according to some critics. at the end of the unit.3. Donne suggests his contradictory. from the Reader. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. nature. and read the poem again. revise subchapter 2. 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. Three major themes can be detached from his poetry: love.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 10 Read Text 2. representing Donne’s sonnet Batter My Heart.3.
He showed a deep love for the countryside. behaving with royal grace in his last minute. anticipating the early Romantic attitude to nature. Nature as “mystic book” Another side of Marvell’s poetic personality is illustrated by his nature poetry. developed then into a complex analogy with the pure Christian soul and its relation with earth and with heaven. is On a Drop of Dew. Gifted with a sharp sense of observation of natural detail. pictured with remarkable precision. The carpe diem* motif was popular in Renaissance poetry. A natural detail. and many of his poems reveal his delight in the contemplation of rural nature. lest it grow [i. The speaker’s argument opposes the “deserts of vast eternity. aspiring to union with almighty God. King Charles I Stuart. Just as the dew-drop is “trembling.8. in contrasting colours. On the other hand. as if Nature itself were a “mystic book. Marvell emphasises the dignity with which the defeated king met his fate.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. The most illustrative poem.e. reveals thus its symbolic dimension to the poet’s contemplative mind. 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. which illustrates the poet’s skill in combining the playful and the serious. however. in which both of them act according to a divine order.7.e. 2.” and finally dissolves itself “into the glories of the almighty Sun.” whose visible beauties are the key to spiritual truths.3. The theme of love in Marvell’s poetry Of Marvell’s love poems. which begins with a most accurate description of a dew-drop on a rose petal. but Marvell’s poem extends it into a meditation on time. on the scaffold. in which the speaker develops an ingenious argument in order to persuade his mistress to give up her coyness [i. to change the form of ruling power).” associated with his mistress’s preference for a prolonged courtship. the most accomplished is To His Coy Mistress. a masterpiece of metaphysical wit. On a Drop of Dew 2.3. these details as emblems of a transcendent reality. He rather sees the events and the fate of the two rulers in the context of a providential history. for fear that it might grow] impure. It is a seduction poem. and thus he can find reason to praise both of them.e.” so the Christian Soul denies the earth and its “impure” pleasures. His nature poems have usually a mystical tendency. shyness] and accept his passionate love. What begins as a nature poem is extended into a religious poem by means of a metaphysical conceit. in this respect. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Carpe diem 54 . Although loyal to the Puritan cause. Marvell often sees. Marvell does not portray Oliver Cromwell and his opponent.
but…. Love. at the end of the unit. then (therefore)…. it can arrest the inevitable course towards physical extinction by a moment of ecstatic pleasure. Love can suspend the inexorable laws of nature. Do not exceed 12 lines / 120 words in all. after revising subchapter 2. paying attention to the logic of the argument. SAQ 11 Read Marvell’s poem To His Coy Mistress (Text 2. is presented as the only way of transcending our mortality. If… But… Therefore… Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 55 .The late Renaissance and the Baroque to the imperative of conquering time by the intensity of sensual enjoyment. in the Reader). read the poem again.8. What are the main ideas corresponding to these three steps? Formulate them succinctly in the space left below. in its sexual fulfillment.3.8. more carefully. If the difference is considerable. which has the structure If….
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
This unit has introduced you to an important aspect of the English Renaissance: the development, in the early 17th century, of the Baroque as a structure of sensibility different from that of the Elizabethan age (corresponding to the high Renaissance). Subchapter 2.1 focuses on the contrast between the optimism, confidence, exuberance, sense of order, harmony and balance characterising the high Renaissance spirit, and the baroque vision with its emphasis on disorder, conflict, tension and confusion, scepticism and anxiety. Paradox and irony are favourite devices for the exploration of the relationship between contraries, such as truth and illusion, wisdom and madness, life and death, body and spirit, action and contemplation, etc. A taste for the obscure, for melancholy, for the macabre often defines the Baroque, but it may also display an attraction to the spectacular, to extravagance and excess. Subchapters 2.2 and 2.3 focus, respectively, on Shakespeare and on two great metaphysical poets, John Donne and Andrew Marvell, who best illustrate this spirit of the late Renaissance. Subchapter 2.2 deals with Shakespeare’s four great plays of his second period of creation – Hamlet, King Lear, Othello, and Macbeth. The themes they explore (the nature of evil, the meaning of human suffering, the paradoxes of innocence and knowledge, truth and falsehood, etc.(reflect the baroque sensibility of the age). This subchapter includes also a discussion of Shakespeare’s last major dramatic creation, The Tempest, a romance play in which his tone changes into a more affirmative one and the central thematic concern is the possibility of moral regeneration, of the restoration of order. Subchapter 2.3 aims to acquaint you with some of the basic features of metaphysical poetry, insisting on its use of conceits, on its argumentative structure, on its mixture of intense feeling and intellectual detachment. Both John Donne and Andrew Marvell display a baroque sensibility in their attraction to paradox and ambiguity, and they are both great masters of metaphysical wit, skillfully controlling lyrical effusion by subtle and precise logical argument.
● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Renaissance Baroque paradox scepticism tragedy romance play play-metaphor metaphysical poetry conceit discordia concors
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
• Baroque: the term comes from the Portuguese barroco and the Spanish barrueco, meaning a rough or imperfectly shaped pearl. It describes a style in architecture and the visual arts, music and literature, which dominated the 17th century, and which was characterised by sumptuous ornamentation and by the search for effect. Its meaning is often extended to a certain type of sensibility, not necessarily restricted to the historical period in which the baroque style flourished. In art, the Baroque is opposed to Classicism and Neoclassicism. blank verse: see the Glossary in Unit 1. carpe diem: literally, “seize the day” in Latin; a phrase from one of Horace’s Odes, meaning “enjoy yourself while you can.” The carpe diem motif is associated with the theme of the brevity of life and the inevitability of death. Civil War: see the Glossary in Unit 1. courtly love: a concept developed during the Middle Ages, in literary and aristocratic/courtly circles, which was closely linked to the feudal concept of vassalage and the cult of the Virgin Mary. discordia concors: (Latin) literally: harmonious discord; combination of apparently discordant images or ideas, the joining of opposites in such a way that a paradoxical sense of harmony is created. fall of princes: the traditional theme of a tragedy, as established by Aristotle (see the Gallery of personalities below), in his treatise on Poetics. According to him, tragedy was supposed to deal with the downfall of a noble character, enjoying “reputation and prosperity.” The disaster is brought on him not by vice and depravity, but by “some error of judgement,” and its representation is meant to arouse pity and fear. far-fetched: literally: carried too far; improbable, unlikely. history plays (or chronicle plays): a form of drama invented by the Elizabethans, which dramatises a certain historical period, starting from historical record rather than from myth and legend. Shakespeare’s chronicle plays include a sequence of four plays on the War of the Roses (the three parts of Henry VI, and Richard III – 1590-1592), and another series, consisting in Richard II, King John, the two parts of Henry IV, and Henry V, written between 1595-1599. These plays are mainly inspired from the 16th century chronicles of Raphael Holinshed, and they were highly influential in the shaping of a national consciousness. They scrutinise the national past, underlining the importance of a centralised authority which should put an end to the dangers of anarchy, inherent in the feudal struggles for power. Horatian Ode: an ode (see the Glossary in Unit 1) written in a highly formal, regular pattern, on the model of the ancient Latin poet Horace (65-8 B.C.). hyperbole: a rhetorical figure consisting in deliberate exaggeration, for the purpose of emphasis. imagery: basically, language appealing to the senses. Imagery represents the coherent system of mental images evoked by 57
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The late Renaissance and the Baroque
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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
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
The late Renaissance and the Baroque
most important and influential of Shakespeare’s precursors. His tragedies (Tamburlane the Great, Doctor Faustus, The Jew of Malta) depict titanic heroes, whose extraordinary will power and ambition set them on a risky quest (for absolute power, knowledge and wealth, respectively). Sidney, Philip (1554-1586): important poet of the Elizabethan age, best known through his sequence of love sonnets Astrophil and Stella. He is also the author of a prose romance, Arcadia, and of a critical prose essay, An Apology [i.e. defense] of Poetry, which played a major role in the definition of English Renaissance literary aesthetics. Spenser, Edmund (1552-1599): one of the greatest English poets, whose influence on later poets is comparable to that of Shakespeare and Milton. Like Sidney (see below), Spenser wrote a sonnet sequence, Amoretti, which enjoyed great popularity. His masterpiece is the allegorical poem The Fairie Queen, a culmination of Renaissance poetic art, which glorifies Queen Elizabeth. Tudor monarchs: Henry VII (1485-1509), who established national order and unity after a long period of feudal war; Henry VIII (1509-1547), Elizabeth I (1558-1603).
Solutions and suggestions for SAQs
SAQ 1 1. emphasis on disorder, violence, conflict, instability 2. emphasis on life’s shortness and insubstantiality (life as dream), on the macabre and the morbid, on melancholy 3. taste for extravagance, excess, breaking of limits and proportions, ambiguity 4. scepticism, anxiety, tension SAQ 2 1. Shakespeare shows a deep understanding of human nature in its extraordinary variety; he portrays a wide range of feelings, emotions, attitudes and moral features; he achieves perfectly convincing characters, in a variety of dramatic registers. 2. The last plays are characterised by a vision of hope and of order restored; here, innocence is victorious over evil, by contrast with the former tragic vision of the universe and of man as torn by inner conflicts. SAQ 3 The fragment contrasts the confidence and exuberance of the Renaissance with the scepticism and melancholy characteristic of the baroque spirit. Hamlet as a Renaissance man glorifies the beauty and majesty of the universe, and praises man as the masterpiece of creation, close to angels and God in his power of understanding and the infinity of his creative potential. On the other hand, to his tragic consciousness the world appears as irremediably corrupt and infested with evil, and man as a creature limited by his mortal condition (“quintessence of dust”).
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
5. of a clean mind. Othello. As “chief nourisher in life’s feast. T. which remain perfectly united. usually between highly dissimilar elements. 3. King Lear SAQ 5 In the first place. 3. 7. even if physically the lovers must be apart.g. which he resents. unexpected. made of two moving legs articulated at one end. T SAQ 8 1. King Lear. F. unable to find peace once it has been corrupted by evil. King Lear. and the horrible crime has immediate effects on his conscience. because the latter’s nature was hopelessly evil. 2. complicated line of argument. Hamlet.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 4 1. “Sleep no more” anticipates the torments of Macbeth’s conscience. From Prospero’s point of view. surprising associations) 3. led to his awareness of his condition as a slave. which organises and “manages” intense feeling and emotion. through language (knowing his “own meaning”). From Caliban’s point of view. F. Prospero seemed also to think that Caliban could be socialised through speech. etc. F. 4. which would have enabled him to communicate (e.g. however.) SAQ 9 The poet associates mutual love with the way in which a pair of compasses works. he chose to raise Caliban to the condition of a rational creature. passion and reason. 4.” sleep (i. SAQ 7 1. is a suitable emblem for their souls. guided by rational will. Perfect circles (symbolising perfect love) may be traced by means of the compasses. This instrument. he failed in his effort to enlighten Caliban. endowed with speech. concise expression and density of meaning 2. use of conceits (extended comparisons. T.e. the development of conscience. attempt to reconcile contradictory or discordant experiences. the abstract and the concrete. SAQ 6 Prospero might have better controlled Caliban in his “brutish” state. this hallucination proves Macbeth’s strong imagination. 2. of his own sense of self. He is not a cold-blooded killer. innocent conscience) is part of the natural order of man’s existence. He thus expected Caliban to overcome his primitive impulses and to develop more civilised tendencies (“purposes”). to blend contraries (e. Hamlet. 6. make his purposes known through words). 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”). “The innocent sleep” is the symbol of moral integrity. By 60 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Hamlet. Othello. analytical detachment from emotion 4. by keeping one foot fixed and moving the other round this centre. As a truly superior being. T. 5.
English Literature and Civilisation. 273-287) 2. which would restore the purity of his faith (being “chaste”). but the implication is that his will and reason are too weak to defend his faith. vol. Boris (ed. A Critical History of English Literature. will long for him. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). your beauty will fade and my songs of praise will have no object when you lie in your grave. while rape presupposes the violation of one’s will. 267-283. because your charms deserve such praise. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Taking him by force – by the force of the divine grace –. But I know time is merciless. the metaphor of the speaker’s “marriage” to God’s enemy suggests his sense of sin. Further reading 1. 3. Ioan-Aurel (coord. SAQ 10 Marriage is associated with love. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. God would set him free for a complete experience of religious devotion. as the moving leg will “come home” and join its “twin. I would spend ages in praising every part of your body. consent and legality. Ford. the inclination of the fixed leg may vary – it seems to “lean after” the moving leg. 1991 (pp. so let us devour Time with the intensity of our desire. Therefore let us enjoy each other while we are still young and you are beautiful. Your own passion “transpires” in the blush of your skin. 302-305) 3.). and which would resemble rape. in the absence of joy. Penguin Books Ltd. waiting for her departed lover. 97-105. just as the mistress.” which only God can effect. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. He loves God. since only worms will “enjoy” it. The only way out of his loveless “marriage” to sin is a “divorce.).The late Renaissance and the Baroque analogy. 34-40.. SAQ 11 If we had time enough and the world were all ours. 1983 (pp. Daiches. But. your virginity will then be worth nothing. the poet’s love depends on the certainty of his mistress’s faithfulness and constancy: “Thy firmness makes my circle just. 1969 (pp.” so there is always the certainty of reunion for the lovers. 130-140) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 61 .. instead of letting it devour us slowly. Paradoxically. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. in fact. however.” Depending on the distance from the centre to the circumference. The speaker tries thus to persuade his mistress of his own constancy of feeling. vol. Preda. David. 246-249.
18.104.22.168. 3. 3.2. 22.214.171.124.4. 3.4. 3.1. 3. Unit objectives The Works of John Milton Milton. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.6.1.2. 3.3. 3.4.4. 3.The works of John Milton UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON Unit Outline 3. 3. 3.4. 3.1. 126.96.36.199. 188.8.131.52. 184.108.40.206.3. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 63 63 63 64 64 66 66 67 67 68 69 70 72 72 74 75 77 78 79 81 82 83 83 84 85 86 87 62 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2. 3. 3.2. 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.
Greek and Hebrew. Milton’s enduring reputation is ensured by his masterpiece. He returned to England when the troubles which were to lead to the Civil War* started. After that. rhetoric and the great works of the classics. mathematics. such as education. which exerted a huge influence on many generations of poets. as a publicist. Milton had from an early age the conviction of his poetic vocation. Milton. religious and civil debates of his age. family. and for almost twenty years he served their ideal of a truly reformed England. Christian faith and classical formal perfection. geography. as well as his moral inflexibility. In his prose essays and pamphlets*. he approached a diversity of subjects. he went on a trip to Italy.1. music. and his acquaintance with the great artistic achievements of that country and with prominent personalities enriched his education and contributed to his erudition. etc. the Christian humanist Milton is one of the most prominent figures of the 17th century. recommended him for the office of Latin Secretary to the Council of State. His education was eminently that of a Christian humanist. the greatest epic poem in English literature. and he dedicated long years of study and preparation to his accomplishment as a creator.). politics. Paradise Lost. motifs and concerns in Milton’s earlier poems ♦ describe the kind of sonnet structure used by Milton ♦ analyse the way in which Milton develops imaginatively and interprets biblical events in Paradise Lost ♦ state and explain the theme of Paradise Lost ♦ summarise the argument that enables Milton to “justify the ways of God to men” in his epic poem ♦ define the main features of the character of Milton’s Satan ♦ describe Milton’s treatment of the characters of Adam and Eve in Paradise Lost Unit objectives 3. the freedom of the press. He lived and created in an age of historical turbulence and profound change. he continued to read intensively. and he made up his mind about his own position in the conflicts that agitated his country. He devoted himself heart and soul to the cause defended by the Puritans*. etc. theology. accumulating an impressive knowledge in a diversity of fields (e. baroque* vision. In 1638. the author of a work which represents a highly original synthesis of Renaissance humanism*. and the course of his literary career was consistently marked by his involvement in the political. he studied Latin. At Cambridge (1625-1629).g. His enormous learning. 63 John Milton (1608-1674) A man of impressive learning The Puritan patriot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . religion.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. written in English and in Latin.
or the two sides of the poet’s soul. but Milton did not complete his plan. and he was perfect master of a variety of styles. who. approaching the great religious themes that enabled him to assert his genius. As a poet. in these poems Milton appears highly preoccupied by his poetic vocation. On the other hand. etc. They deal with contrasting moods of poetic inspiration. with its pastoral delights. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso To Milton’s long years of preparation for the fulfilment of his vocation belong also two poems. the pastoral* image of the shepherd becomes a metaphor for the poet-priest engaged in the exploration of high Christian themes. to whose excellence he aspired to rise. Milton follows Ovid in the emphasis on sensuous enjoyment. He sought inspiration in biblical mythology. Ovid*. Milton’s early poems Milton started writing poetry very early. As his poetic personality gained in self-confidence. but his maturity and experience enabled him to bring to fulfilment the most important part of his poetic work. In some of them. In the Sixth elegy. like a priest. As in other poems. in the perfect integration of classical allusion and pagan mythology with Christian spirituality. as it is also an ambitious assertion of Milton’s own literary birth as a “poet-priest.The works of John Milton The Christian humanist poet a position that he occupied from 1649 until 1660. Virgil*. celebrating the birth (the “nativity”) of Christ and its inauguration of a new order for humanity. he started to move away from themes and concerns which were defining for the classicist spirit of the Renaissance. L’Allegro describes a day – from morning till sunset – in the life of the cheerful man. Milton’s Christian humanism consists in this fusion of classical form and Christian themes. which already displayed the ambivalence in Milton’s poetic identity as both Christian poet and classicist humanist. is in touch with divine secrets. This poem was intended as the first in a series about the significant moments of the Christian year. However. in the optimism and exuberance accompanying the contemplation of reviving nature.). for instance.” The Latin elegies The Nativity Ode 3. which are in fact complementary: L’Allegro [“the cheerful man”] and Il Penseroso [“the pensive/melancholy man”].2. 3. and his first notable poems were seven Latin elegies*.2. Milton wrote with the same ease and grace both in English and in Latin. With the Restoration*. Milton places emphasis on the dignity of agricultural labour and the 64 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1. However. these two sides are usually kept apart in these poems. Milton’s first important poem in English on a religious theme was written in 1629: On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity. his political hopes ended. the Nativity Ode* is a landmark in his creation. His models were the great Greek and Latin poets (Homer*. in the treatment of the theme of love and the use of Greek mythology. by his aspiration to be a Christian epic* poet.
If your choices should be wrong. In both poems. in Il Penseroso. 3. Milton’s literary ambition was a. the integration. The diurnal activities and the cheerfulness of L’Allegro are replaced here by the nocturnal peace and quiet of the “lonely tower. and 3. the song of the milkmaid) contrasts with the deep. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso a. The final part of Il Penseroso expresses the poet’s aspiration of attaining visionary power. with its simple pleasures.” in which the studious poet finds the gratification of intellectual experience. his constant preoccupation with his own poetic becoming. In Il Penseroso. b. in L’Allegro. polyphonic sounds of the organ.e. appropriate mythological allusions contribute to the creation of the atmosphere. In each poem. at the end of the unit. the diversity of subjects in his prose essays and pamphlets. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 65 . b. b.2. Are Milton’s first poems in English which deal with a Christian theme. celebrate the diurnal pleasures of pastoral life and its activities. are complementary poems about poetic inspiration and creative moods.The works of John Milton satisfactions that it offers. 1. the poet hopes to hear “more than is meant to meet the ear” – i. the crowing of the cock. In the latter. but the “natural” music of L’Allegro (the song of the lark. and on the happiness of rural life. revise subchapters 3.” contemplative mood. 2. Milton’s Christian humanism is reflected in a. c. SAQ 1 Make the right choice to continue each of the three beginning statements. The secular* pleasures of common life. c. c. in his poetic work. gives way to the mystic exaltation of the poet-student listening to religious music. of classical erudition with biblical themes. he expects to discern in the heavenly notes a spiritual truth. There is both parallelism and contrast between the two poems. to master a variety of styles. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. to rival the classics in his perfect mastery of Latin. there is a strong emphasis on music.1. to become a great epic poet of the Christian age. the poet emphasises the blessings of the “pensive. you will thus review some aspects of Milton’s literary personality.
If in other poems of Milton’s early career this thought is expressed more obliquely. The death of the dedicated young man. and the end of the elegy brings in a note of personal confidence. He wrote sonnets intermittently throughout his life. and they were either testimonies of personal experience and feeling.” Lycidas shows Milton again preoccupied by his own becoming a poet. he defines his poetic ambition in terms which are both Christian and classical-humanist. to fresh woods and pastures new. in two of his sonnets he reveals these anxieties in a direct.3. personal manner. Milton’s sonnets Milton revived the tradition of the sonnet*. preparing himself seriously for becoming a priest. in a heavenly pastoral world. uses again the pastoral frame. written at the death of a fellow-student at Cambridge.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. not on earth. or occasional and complimentary compositions. 66 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton’s sonnets demonstrate a remarkable flexibility. Confronted with the tragic inevitability of death. 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. Milton composed another poem in which. Lycidas – a pastoral elegy In the same year with L’Allegro and Il Penseroso (1637). 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. representing both himself and his dead mate as shepherds. The elegy Lycidas. the shepherdpoet’s consolation is in his own sense of purpose. Milton’s concern with his poetic fulfilment 3. again. Milton adds a contemporary Christian relevance to the classical pastoral convention when he reflects on the corruption of the church. in his determination to carry on with his task and do each day’s work: “Tomorrow.2. which had known a period of decline since the Elizabethan age*. The death of a promising young man makes the poet meditate on existential problems. Irrespective of their nature. variety and originality in the use of this poetic form.2. may appear unjust in a world in which corrupt priests prosper and accede to high offices. The answer to such questions enlarges the frame of the pastoral elegy: the true reward for both merit and vice is in heaven. The lamenting poet finds comfort in the thought that the soul of the dead friend is now with God.
foolishly: how can God expect him to fulfill his task if He has decided to make him blind? (“Doth God exact daylabour. In Sonnet XVII. at his age. He has reached the age of twenty four. Milton has the strong sense that his poetic accomplishment is a task imposed by God (his “great task-master”). Sonnet XVII After almost twenty years. written in 1631. confessing his temptation to ask. A sad biographical circumstance increased Milton’s anxiety in this respect: he was going blind. he admits. As a Christian poet. If he is to transcend time by literary fame. Sonnet VII In Sonnet VII (“How soon hath time”).3. he must admit.2. To prevent such a complaint. as King of Heaven. i. Milton was still invoking Patience to avoid the anxiety caused by his feeling of “unripeness. in 1652.e.” to carry out the task in such a way as to make his achievement count in eternity. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 67 . In the first part of the sonnet.1. but he had not fulfilled his great poetic promise. but of God’s eternal will. Milton’s eye-sight was definitively compromised. he Paradise Lost to commands “thousands” (of spirits. Lamenting the loss making his political and religious views known in a series of influential of his eyesight essays.” “mean or high” as it may be.The works of John Milton 3. Milton meditates on his loss of sight. 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. but finds consolation in his faith in Providence. and the theme of blindness was to accompany the great themes of his coming masterpieces. light denied?”). they have been fortunately able to prove their maturity at the right time. that the unfolding of his poetic destiny is not only a matter of time. Patient and dignified waiting for God’s will to be fulfilled is also a way of serving Him. Patience – a Christian virtue – teaches him that God is served not only by actions. but also by Christian humility. that. in which the accumulation of knowledge was meant to create a solid foundation for his future great work. since.” It would be arrogance to think that God needs “either man’s Milton dictating work or gift” to assert His greatness. by the acceptance of one’s fortune – of God’s “mild yoke.” that they are “timely happy spirits”. other young men have demonstrated “inward ripeness.” with no “bud or blossom” to promise ripe fruit. The only thing that matters is that he should have “grace to use it so. and confronts the evidence of a “late spring. patiently. Milton laments the passing of his youth without any sign of poetic ripeness. angels). in another poem of this kind (Sonnet XVII). God: the poet’s “great taskmaster” 3. Since for God time is in fact eternity (“All is…as ever” in God’s eye). The life of study and leisure that the poet had been leading was a period of prolonged apprenticeship*.3. it does not matter if this task is fulfilled soon or late.” By this time. who carry out the divine his daughters will. with a certain sadness. he had asserted himself as a successful publicist. When he wrote Sonet XVII. and that the passing of the time will eventually confirm if he is destined for glory.
Read these sonnets (Texts 3. and the two sonnets.2. What is the common thematic development in these two sonnets? Your answer should not exceed 8 lines/80 words. This formal pattern usually corresponds to a certain thematic structure. made up of two sections: an octave (an eight-line stanza) and a sestet (a six-line stanza). Dante* –.1. completing it in 1665 and publishing it in 1667.The works of John Milton SAQ 2 Milton adopted the form of the Italian sonnet. he expected the inspiring Muse to compensate for his physical blindness with a 68 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . respectively. at the end of the unit. and of leaving to posterity an undying work.3. Paradise Lost was the fruit of long years of preparation and meditation.” He had always dreamed of reaching the stature of the great epic poets that were his models – Homer. 3. His blindness was no obstacle – as he advanced in the composition of the poem. paying attention to what their octave and sestet deal with. If there should be significant differences. the passages stored in his mind were transcribed after his dictation. and 3. which in Sonnets VII and XVII is the same. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and it represented the fulfillment of his ambition to write an epic which would be “doctrinal to a nation. in the Reader). As the several Invocations in the poem suggest. when he was already blind. Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Milton began the composition of his masterpiece in 1657.4.2. and he worked at it over several years. Virgil. read again subchapter 3.
in which man’s fall.” and the central theme of his poem is that of felix culpa* – the fortunate mistake. man’s temptation and fall into sin. in fact. Milton had thought. the greatest synthesis of the Western literary tradition.” forever deprived of the glory. 3. are gathered to listen to Satan. but by Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 69 . and thus to enable him to attain indeed to a “prophetic strain. over the years. brought about by his disobedience.” as he anticipated in Il Penseroso.4. burning in the “darkness visible” of those “regions of sorrow.The works of John Milton more penetrating understanding of spiritual truths. whose main moments are the fall of the rebel angels. but his erudition. happiness and peace they had enjoyed in Heaven. which is never ornamental. obedience and rebellion.e. These problems may be summarised by the alternative freedom vs. an evil which is turned to good in God’s overall plan for the history of creation. He interprets poetically the biblical events. he decided on the subject of the Fall – the theme of Paradise double fall. The The belief in poem’s doctrinal foundation is the idea that God’s infinite knowledge free will and power do not exclude man’s freedom of action and choice. the poem develops an implicit debate on such contraries as freedom and tyranny. His work is encyclopaedic. and his loss of Paradise. of many possible subjects for his capital work – subjects inspired either from British or from The subject and biblical history. declares his hatred against God and his intention to regain Heaven. the creation of the world and of man. Then the reader is plunged into the middle of the action: the fallen angels in Hell. of Lucifer* from Heaven. and of Adam and Eve Lost from Paradise. Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The poem begins in conventional epic manner. as he stated in the opening Invocation. accumulated throughout his life. original epic scenario.1.” full of the bitterness of defeat. Its Christian frame absorbs and integrates Milton’s astonishing learning. Satan is determined to wage “eternal war” to his “grand Foe [i. Paradise Lost defines Milton best as a Christian humanist. Incapable of accepting the thought of submission and of his imprisonment in Hell. Starting from the dualism good/evil. with the poet’s invocation of the Muse. is presented as a necessary moment in the “Eternal Providence*”. knowledge and ignorance/innocence. Finally. predestination*. Milton approached in his grandiose epic problems which provoked heated polemics in his time. to “illumine” what is “dark” in him. The twelve books which make up Paradise Lost unfold an impressive epic action. etc. The “lost Archangel. the fault with The Felix culpa happy consequences. (divine) love and (Satanic) hatred. in theme a daring. is subordinated to the poetic intensification or clarification of the main theme. “to justify the ways of God to men. enemy]” who “holds the tyranny of Heaven. Milton’s ambition was.” He suggests to his followers that their “work” should no longer be done by force – since that is the attribute of the Almighty –.
the overwhelming discord of the elements of a yet uncreated world. The accepted solution is to reach the new world created by God. is rendered in one of the most highly poetic passages in the poem.” and to make them transgress God’s interdiction of tasting the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. knowing in advance that Satan will be successful in his attempt to “pervert” man. Milton displays here at his best his gift of evoking vast spaces and general chaos. Satan is prevented from carrying out his design by the angels guarding Paradise. 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. He contemplates with envy the beauty and the innocent happiness of Adam and Eve.2. Satan has reached the Garden of Eden. and their discussions are rendered in Book II. by virtue of his leading position. The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Book III.” He thus anticipates the moment of the Temptation. Man’s sin of disobedience must be punished justly. and so “Heavenly love shall outdo [i.” God anticipates the event of His Son’s incarnation. Satan. whose setting is in Heaven. in which his success was due to deceit and dissimulation. 3. the ascension from darkness to the light of his “native seat” – now forbidden to him –. whose splendour is described more effectively through Satan’s jealous eyes. cunning].” Meanwhile. and he flies away. Pandemonium*.e. to seek the newly created Earth.e.The works of John Milton The council of the fallen angels “fraud or guile [i. God’s Son offers to pay this price for the reconciliation of man to his heavenly Father. set him free from sin. explains to His Son the reason for his allowing this to happen. 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. the “wild abyss” governed by Night. God. assumes the danger of trying to break free from the formidable prison of Hell. to find the weakness of man and to seduce him to join their party. concentrates the doctrinal argument of the poem. death and resurrection. and plans to “excite their minds / With more desire to know. His voyage through the great gulf separating Hell from Heaven.e. Chaos and Chance. The corruption of God’s creation was thought better than any kind of revenge. Divine justice and mercy Book IV: Satan’s arrival in the Garden of Eden 70 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .4. surpass] hellish hate. The fallen angels are all called to a council in Satan’s infernal palace. i.
more carefully. which contains God’s justification for allowing man to fall.The works of John Milton SAQ 3 Read Text 3. and what are its implications? Answer in no more than 15 lines/150 words. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 71 . at the end of the unit. read again the text.4. What is God’s argument. If there should be major differences. in the Reader. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
and.3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural The divine creation: Good coming out of Evil 72 . In Milton’s interpretation. in the multitude of its phenomena and living forms. and about his perfect happiness in the company of “divinely fair” Eve. without aspiring to know things above his power of understanding. Raphael tries to restrain Adam’s curiosity about “things above this world. In Book VIII. 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. 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. space]” left by the fallen angels. and fear to transgress!” 3. Adam admits that.” to fill in the “vacant room [i. The idea of Good coming out of Evil is central to Paradise Lost. Satan. after the defeat of the rebel angels. He draws Adam’s attention that God has made him “perfect.4. whose pride had been hurt when God proclaimed His Son the “Messiah.4. not immutable [i. and its impulse was God’s desire to create “good out of evil. both in the large-scale description of the making of celestial bodies or in the sublime picture of the primal waters.” for the evocation of the making of the world. in order to prolong his guest’s visit.” Man himself was created as a “better race. as this diminished W. innocence and “virgin modesty. and in the description of more familiar details of earthly Nature.4. Raphael’s warning to Adam In Book V. so that he may know more about his enemy.” Raphael leaves them.” and reminds him that obedience to his Maker means enjoying the present happy state.” and that this happiness depends on his free will. The six days of the biblical Genesis are developed by Milton into an impressive poetic vision. he tells him about his own experiences after he was created. with her “absolute” loveliness and grace. in Book VII. sweetness. in Milton’s poem. Blake: The downfall of the his own power and pre-eminence.The works of John Milton 3. and wishes to know more about the celestial motions. Adam asks Raphael to tell him the story of the fallen angels. instigated by Lucifer. the angel Raphael. and most evident in the treatment of the fall of Adam and Eve. Milton displays an extraordinary evocative power. not before repeating his warning. and he explicitly warns Adam: “remember. It is interesting that. Adam is grateful to Raphael.” He explains to Adam that true wisdom lies in the desire to know those things which directly concern one’s own being. visits Adam in Paradise to warn him about the danger from Satan. Raphael once again advises him against trying to penetrate the secrets of the “great Architect. that cannot change].e. the divine creation took place after the fall of Lucifer. King Anointed*”. the “divine historian. The rest of Book V and Book VI are a retrospective account of the war in Heaven. sent by God.e. The creation of the world Raphael also tells Adam the story of the creation of the world and of man.
If your answer should differ significantly from the offered suggestions. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. in no more than 10 lines/100 words. 1794) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 73 . more carefully. What does Milton suggest by the image of God using his “golden compasses”? Answer in the space below. in the Reader presents. W. read the fragment again. A Prophecy. and the “Spirit of God” infusing life into the primal ocean. Blake: Urizen as the creator of the material world (from the poem Europe. through Raphael’s words.The works of John Milton SAQ 4 Text 3. the first moments in the creation of the world: the making of heavens and skies.7.
most subtle*] beast of all the field. he is disarmed by her Satan with Adam and angelic grace.5. Eve is amazed at the miracle of a beast capable of speech and. but he regains the strength of his hate and appears to Eve (1808) her in the splendid shape of the Serpent.” but to “open eyes” and bring those who taste closer to the condition of a god. discord” – which make reason and will helpless. Blake: Satan finds Eve alone. The “calm region” of their state of mind. Their former innocent sensuality is now replaced by guilty lust and the feeling of shame.” Back to guarded Paradise in this disguise. since the “link of nature” is so strong between them that he cannot imagine living without her. Credulous Eve tastes from the forbidden fruit and tries to convince Adam that its effect is not to open the way to “evil unknown. At last. the “subtlest [i. is now troubled by the “higher winds” of negative passions – “anger. Meanwhile. W. their inward the fall on Nature peace. whose spirit has entered the body of a serpent. Satan gives voice again to his torments and to his ambition of destroying God’s creation. Book IX: Eve and the Serpent (illustration by John Martin. her argument wins: she is willing to put her innocence to trial. the thundering skies weep. certain that the proud tempter will not be successful.The works of John Milton 3.” she is finally seduced by his promise of higher knowledge and by his assurance that there is no sin in such aspiration.4. and all The effects of Nature is in pain. flattered by his praise of her “celestial beauty. Adam is chilled with horror at Eve’s irresponsible mistake but decides to share her fate. The seduction of Eve Book IX presents the great scene of Eve’s seduction by Satan. and. and all harmony between them is destroyed by bitter reciprocal accusations. suspicion. for a moment. while Adam tries to convince her that together they would be more safe from harm. The disaster of the original sin shakes the foundations of the natural order: Earth trembles. Adam and Eve have a difference of opinion: Eve insists that they should divide their daily labour and work in different places.e. hate / Mistrust. 1827) 74 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
_______ d.6. but His fear that His power might be weakened if His creatures equalled him in knowledge. This emphasises the idea that Satan’s victory is not final. but are terribly humiliated to find that they are tasting only dust and ashes.” is the one who will. accusing Him of keeping Adam and Eve ignorant so that He may hold them in a state of servitude. Write the number(s) of the corresponding fragment(s) in the indicated space. He tries to arouse Eve’s suspicion that God’s reason for His interdiction may not be man’s own good. The world after the Fall In the next books. or fragments. from the speech by which Satan tempts Eve into disobeying God and eating the forbidden fruit. He tries to introduce into Eve’s mind the doubt about God’s being “the author of all things. He tries to awaken in Eve the spirit of defiance and insubordination. He denigrates God. as God himself predicts: His Son. Milton continues to expand moments of the biblical Genesis. and he proudly boasts of it in the Pandemonium. which marks the conquest of the world by Satan. read once more the indicated text and do the exercise again. If any of your matches should be wrong. He flatters Eve. He tempts Eve with the promise of absolute knowledge. 75 Book X: the world open to Sin and Death Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . _______ c. a. The sentences below describe various moves in Satan’s strategy of seduction. at last. at the end of each sentence. Match these sentences with the fragment. hoping to arouse her pride. annihilate Sin and Death. they taste its fruit. which will bring her close to the condition of God. in the middle of this speech. such as the building of a huge bridge across chaos by Sin and Death. on a separate sheet. He tries to dispel Eve’s fear of death. _______ f. 3. but he also adds symbolic episodes.” _______ g.8. in the Reader contains four fragments from Book IX. Seduced by the illusion of the Tree of Knowledge. the destined “restorer of Mankind*. _______ Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the whole assembly of fallen angels are temporarily turned into monstrous hissing snakes and dragons. by inciting her to disbelieve God’s threat.4. Satan’s victory seems complete. but. at the end of the unit.The works of John Milton SAQ 5 Text 3. in which these moves are illustrated. the consequences of man’s original sin are unfolded in episodes of great poetic and emotional intensity. _______ e. _______ b.
intemperance. 1827) 76 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Book XII: Adam and Eve leaving Paradise (illustration by John Martin. but He decides that Adam and Eve may no longer live in Paradise. The certainty that. Moments of the biblical history are unfolded before Adam’s eyes. 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. The promise of where the central episode is the promised birth of God’s Son. asking God to accept their prayers and sincere repentance. and the poem closes not on a note of despair. an anticipation of the effects of the original sin on the following generations. but of sadness. redemption*: Jesus. God consents. and He sends the archangel Michael to God decides Adam and Eve’s expulsion show them out. Adam suffers deeply for the loss of his native place and of God’s proximity. from Heaven Before they leave Paradise. faith and good deeds. – to the hostility of Nature. resurrection and ascension to the coming of Heaven. changed drastically after Adam’s fall.” founded on love. In Book XI. etc. the emphasis on the presence and role of the Son of God increases. death. combining thus justice with mercy. who can see the “many shapes of Death” and the many ways that lead to it. through Christ. and offering to pay the price of His own death for the peace between God and mankind.The works of John Milton After the story of man’s fall. pride. God sends Him to communicate the divine punishment to Adam and Eve. The vision is replaced by Michael’s narrative in Book XII. the Son of God acts as a mediator between the sinful humans and His Father. but Michael comforts him. from man’s own vices – violence. Michael shows Adam a vision of the future. evil will finally be turned to good makes Adam and Eve’s exile from Paradise more tolerable. In Book X. his suffering.
The works of John Milton SAQ 6 Text 3. The heroes of Paradise Lost Many critics have remarked the paradox that the heroic spirit of Milton’s epic is embodied in Satan. in the Reader represents the ending of Paradise Lost. If they should differ in major points. at the end of the unit. It may be argued. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 77 . 3. that both Satan and the human couple are heroic – each in a different way in their endurance of the bitter consequences of their sin. more carefully. 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. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.5. however. which they fully assume. read the fragment again.9.
He displays majesty and grandeur even in his fallen condition. and his longing for the delights of his former existence torments him like an inner hell. where there is “neither joy nor love.” Envy accompanies Satan’s thirst for power.e. This is why he is in a continual state of frustration and anger. and his extraordinary courage “never to submit or yield” inspires his followers. Satan seems to comfort himself with the thought that at least he is free. 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.” as he cannot help comparing their bliss with his own condition in Hell. but for him freedom does not mean equality: among the rebel angels. which is itself a paradise. In Hell. he had been the first Archangel. “great in power / In favour and pre-eminence. and he finds inner strength only in the intensity of his hatred. and his great ambition is “to reign. Satan appears indeed as a champion of freedom. but he also knows that this freedom is a form of punishment. and that Milton gave the full measure of his literary genius in the character of Satan because he instinctively supported the idea of freedom. Over a century after the poem’s publication. Before his fall. Pride is one of Satan’s most prominent features in Pride and ambition Paradise Lost. William Blake remarked that Satan is Milton’s most accomplished creation. in whom they saw an embodiment of the spirit of freedom and of resistance to tyrannical oppression. unwilling to serve a power that he considered tyrannical. he naturally assumes the role of a leader.” He instigates the other angels to rebellion in the name of freedom from servitude.The works of John Milton 3. Satan knows how to inflame again their ambition of re-ascending and their thirst for revenge. made happy in their innocent love.” only the pain of longing and unfulfilled desire. the Romantic poets were to establish the view that Satan is actually the main hero. In moments when the fallen angels feel despair at having lost Heaven. he is envious of God’s omnipotence. since it is accompanied by suffering and torment. “Imparadised in one another’s arms” – i.5. From the beginning of the poem.1. 78 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell The most fascinating of Milton’s heroes is undoubtedly Satan. This sight is for him “hateful” and “tormenting. He is envious Envy and hate of God’s Son and His title as King of Heaven.
5. His “immortal hate” makes revenge his only aim.” and the “Enemy of Mankind. Satan can assert his freedom of action only in the sphere of evil.” He is “the author of all ill. he is the promoter of suspicion and doubt. It is also with “persuasive* words. and he invests all his titanic energies in his destructive plan. Satan. Awakening in man the impulse to question. Satan represents the negation of the creative power of the divine Word: his revenge is accomplished not by force. but the epic poet insistently underlines their manipulative intentions. He is determined “to do ill” – which is “the contrary to his high will” – or to pervert the good done by God. Milton insists on the fact that they abandoned “the eternal splendours of Heaven” and followed Satan seduced by his promises of freedom and greatness. The temptation of Eve is in fact the repetition of the earlier act of persuading the angels to join him in his rebellion. Satan’s speeches have an impressive convincing force. the destroyer of faith. As God’s absolute antagonist. and his power of seduction comes from the mastery of a very efficient rhetoric. but by the evil subtlety of his mind and the corrupting power of his word. that he determines Eve to break the divine interdiction. and “out of good still to find means of evil. The negative power of rhetoric: Satan the Tempter Gustave Doré: Satan (1870) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 79 .” which actually lacked substance that he manages to revive the courage of the depressed fallen angels.2. It is with “high words.The works of John Milton 3. 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. Satan’s greatness as a character comes from the sublime intensity of his negative passions.” seeming reasonable and true. Satan is The Tempter.” in whose destruction he finds complete satisfaction for his hurt pride.
in the Reader contains a part of Satan’s speech before his followers. If there are significant differences. and read the indicated fragment again. His words reveal some of the defining features of Milton’s hero.. and point out what features of Satan’s nature are illustrated by the following lines: A. and 3. 80 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .5.2. in Hell. and in itself / Can make a Heaven of Hell. revise subchapters 3.3.) B. Read the whole fragment carefully. “and “The mind is its own place. at the end of the unit.1.The works of John Milton SAQ 7 Text 3. “A mind not to be changed by time or place.5.” (6 lines /60 words) Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven. a Hell of Heaven”? (Answer in no more than 4 lines/40 words.
Blake: The expulsion from Milton deals with it as one of the central paradoxes of the human condition.” “our general mother. He is now more aware of his freedom and his potentiality. Fallen man is not a hateful creature. While Satan’s pain is always accompanied by the proud defiance of God. the titanic dimension of his suffering. As a Christian. The way in which Milton refers to Adam and Eve throughout the poem points out his reverence to the original pair. there is not any doubt left about his fundamental evil. are set against Adam and Eve’s lamentations after the fall. precursor]. Adam is called Sire* of Men. but who can hope for redemption*. Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Poetically. The consequences of their fall are great because their virtues – so tragically tested – are great. but armed with the wisdom of faith.e. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 81 . Milton is the heir of the Renaissance in his glorification of man and his virtues. gifted with reason – a divine Eden 1808) attribute –. in spite of the fascination and seductive power with which he is invested. Milton depicts Adam and Eve’s fall not as the result of depravity. In his last conversation with Michael. As a humanist.” The insistent use of the adjective “our” suggests Milton’s invitation to the reader to join him in his identification.” “mother of human race.” “Our great Progenitor [i.The works of John Milton 3. of turning all evil into good by the supreme act of divine grace: the acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice for man. but W. as well as his identification with them in their condition of creatures that have fallen. of their wrong use of the freedom given by God. Created in God’s image. the protagonists of Milton’s ambitious epic leave it not in hopeless disgrace. Both Adam and Eve display a certain Satanic fascination with the possibility of overcoming their condition through knowledge. he justifies “the ways of God to men” by showing the necessity of the divine grace. There is a tragic combination of greatness and weakness in their portrayal.” “Our Author.” but also “our credulous mother. He has the revelation of the grandeur of God’s plan and of the “goodness infinite” of the Creator. and Milton expresses both admiration and compassion for them.” “Patriarch of Mankind.3. the character of Satan is Milton’s greatest achievement in Paradise Lost. the sorrow of the fallen humans at their own weakness and their final recognition of their fault entitles them to God’s mercy.” Eve is the “Mother of Mankind.5. Satan’s torments in Hell. Adam’s enlarged understanding emerges in perfect fusion with his strengthened faith. man has paid a terrible price for the wisdom of not imitating Satan. in Book XII. He is now able to understand God’s final purpose. deprived of worth. ancestor. But it is an evidence of Milton’s genius that. Although Paradise has become a forbidden place for them. of understanding and accepting his limits. but as a consequence of their wrong choices.
Milton was deeply involved in the religious and political debates of mid-17th century. Summary In this unit.5. in which he explains to His Son why the fall of man was inevitable.The works of John Milton SAQ 8 Text 3. presents some of his notable early compositions – the Latin elegies. Read this fragment and summarise its argument. Devoted to the Puritan cause during the Civil War. a necessary part of His design. he prepared himself for it during long years. Some of Milton’s earlier works display this obsessive concern with his becoming a great poet. 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. Subchapter 3. you are recommended a more careful reading of the indicated text. and the twin poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso. in the Reader.2. at the end of the unit. Convinced also of his poetic vocation. the pastoral elegy Lycidas. the Nativity Ode. Compare your answer with that offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The same obsession with poetic ripeness may be found 82 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . contains a fragment from God’s speech in Book III. one of the greatest English poets. If there should be major differences. you have been acquainted with some aspects of the prominent literary personality of John Milton. in no more than 8 lines/80 words.
The works of John Milton in two of his sonnets. apprenticeship: the training for a trade or for any kind of activity. be tested for the responsibility which must accompany the exercise of his free will. The central events in Milton’s epic are the fall of Lucifer and of the rebel angels. the fall of man and the loss of Paradise. In Milton’s vision of the original sin. concerns itself with Milton’s heroes in Paradise Lost. Baroque: see the Glossary in Unit 2. and the culmination of his poetic achievement as a Christian humanist. Milton emphasises his fortitude and strength of will.5. but also in which man may. and the promise of man’s reconciliation with God through the sacrifice of Christ. Undoubtedly. offers a brief presentation of the subject and structure of the poem. Milton’s impressive epic poem Paradise Lost (1667) is the fruit of his mature vision.” and its great Christian theme is that of felix culpa. as a sign of consecration or sanctification. put in the service of evil. which interprets poetically key moments in biblical history and elements of biblical mythology. Adam and Eve are treated both with the typical Renaissance admiration for man’s potential and virtues.4. in which divine grace will eventually turn all evil into good. Subchapter 3. the creation of the world and of man. Civil War: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. at any time.3. which are. the most fascinating and complex creation is Satan – Lucifer in his fallen condition. his love of freedom. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 83 . Subchapter 3. Satan is dominated by powerful negative passions which keep him the prisoner of an inner hell. The declared aim of Milton’s epic is “to justify the ways of God to men. Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● Christian humanism elegy sonnet epic the Fall of Man the original sin free will Lucifer / Satan Felix culpa Glossary • • • • anointed: from to anoint: to apply oil on someone in a religious ceremony. however. His destructive energy represents a negation of the creative power of the divine word. and with the Christian compassion for their unhappy choice. Milton justifies the fall of man and his exile from Paradise in the context of a providential history. his courage and majesty. presented in subchapter 3.
to convince.). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 84 . Gallery of personalities • Dante: Dante Alighieri (1265-1321). secular: related to worldly things (as opposed to sacred). Ovid: Publius Ovidius Nasso (43 B. author of La Divina Commedia. Italian poet. he is called Satan. Purgatory and Paradise.” After the fall from Heaven. foreknowledge: knowledge of something before it happens. or some tragic event. It means “the carrier of light.e. Lucifer: the name of the archangel who led the rebel angels. pamphlet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. guided by Virgil and his idealised love Beatrice. the allegorical account of the poet’s journey through Hell. Homer: Greek poet (c. pastoral: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Roman poet.e. to a place of wild confusion. to cause to believe). every. clever in using tricks. benevolent care or protection of his creatures. epic: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. not concerned with or related to religion. by extension. the act by which God determines in advance the events and their course. the one who sets man free from sin). redemption: the deliverance (the rescuing) of man from sin through the incarnation. The word may refer. noise and chaos.The works of John Milton • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • elegy: a meditative poem lamenting the death of someone. 800 B.C. Providence: God’s kindness.D. In classical literature.). Puritans: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. humanism: see classical revival in the Glossary in Unit 1. predestination: from a theological point of view. formerly used when speaking to a king. Restorer of Mankind: Christ as the one who will return (restore) man to God’s grace and to his original condition. sonnet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. subtle: not immediately evident. persuasive: having the power or ability to persuade (i. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Pandemonium: a word coined by Milton (from Greek pan: all. Sire: a respectful term of address.C. to whom are attributed the great epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey. Man’s sin/fault was “happy” because its reward was Christ. the “great and good redeemer” (i. felix culpa: this phrase comes from a line in the Latin version of the Catholic religious service held on Easter Sunday. the range of subjects in an elegy was wider. and daimon: demon) – the place where all demons gathered. difficult to detect (or analyse). suffering and death of Christ. whose works include the poem on love Ars Amatoria and the poem on myths Metamorphoses. It may also mean cunning.-17 A. ode: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.
at the end of the play. 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. one of the greatest Roman poets. 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.3.2. before he firmly decides to carry out his evil plan.2. and 2. Send-away assignment no.C. 1 This assignment covers Unit 2 and Unit 3. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. 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 . which reveals the complexity of Milton’s hero. and thus of destroying man.1. in Milton’s Paradise Lost.).5. Satan prepares himself to enter Paradise and to accomplish his diabolical design of tempting Eve. Identify his conflicting feelings and the various thoughts that trouble his conscience. before the final battle. Texts 2. whose epic poem The Aeneid relates the experiences of Aeneas after the fall of legendary Troy.6. 2.1. You will thus be drawing a portrait of Milton’s Satan. in which he explores his inner hell. in the Reader renders most of his memorable monologue. God’s creation. At the beginning of Book IV. 40 lines/400 words should be enough for your answer (apart from the lines that you are expected to quote for illustration).. You will find it helpful to read again subchapter 2. In both of them. 1. It will be therefore advisable to revise the preceding unit. Macbeth delivers his monologue immediately after he is informed about Lady Macbeth’s death.2.4. • What characteristic baroque theme do both fragments illustrate? Given the different context – tragic in Macbeth.The works of John Milton • Virgil: Publius Ovidius Maro (70-19 B. A revision of subchapter 3. the paragraphs about Macbeth in 2. • Read attentively this fragment. His speech reveals Satan’s tormented mind and the multitude of passions that agitate his soul. with special attention to the indicated subchapters. romantic in The Tempest –. the baroque motif of the theatrical illusion is developed. what is the difference in the implications of the two play-metaphors? The answer to these questions should not exceed 25 lines / 250 words. Prospero’s speech closes the representation given in honour of Ferdinand and Miranda. Text 3. either with remarkable lucidity or blinded by his hate and ambition. and the last paragraph of 2.. in the Reader represent short fragments from Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest.
as man’s wrong choice was not the pure result of his free will. i.” man shared the perfection of the angels (“the Ethereal Powers and Spirits”) and their complete freedom of will and judgment. Remember that. Milton emphasises the geometrical. The latter part of both sonnets (the sestet) changes the mood to one of patient confidence. the “instrument” by which to exercise his free will.c. Both man and the rebel angels are “authors to themselves in all. 3. since that would mean the “revocation” of His own “high decree” by which man was made free.” In the case of man. 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. 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. 2. God cannot use His infinite power and knowledge to prevent the errors of those who are free to choose. is that one may choose right or wrong. not God.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%. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. The poet places his trust in Providence. SAQ 3 God’s whole argument is based on the idea of freedom. clarity. SAA no. or reason. his blindness. like that of the angels. responsible for his choices. The paradox of freedom. in grading your paper.a.. respectively) and with the anxiety that poetic fulfilment is late to come. The implication is that God gave man conscience. is thus not attributable to God. comforting himself with the faith that his poetic destiny is in God’s hands.b. • the coherence. and reason makes man. both sonnets deal with the theme of loss (the poet’s sense of the passing of time. 1 will count as 10% in your final assessment. rational spirit of the Creator (he refers to Him elsewhere as “the great 86 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . SAQ 2 In the first section (the octave).e. the divine punishment is compensated by mercy (the sending of Jesus as mankind’s saviour).. but the consequence of evil influence. The fall of man. however. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). Created “just and right.
Man is not a free creature. Their hesitant steps suggest their awareness of the difficulty of all choice. i. The Literature of the Beginnings. Satan feels God’s absolute power as a limitation to his enormous ambition. Incapable of obedience to God. Turcu. Preda. Ioan-Aurel (coord. 1983 (pp. 3. If Hell is a space of freedom. This line illustrates both his aspiration to complete independence and his ambition. comforting himself that he exchanged submission for sovereignty. d..e.3. His gift of Reason to man has no justification (it is “useless and vain”). SAQ 8 God cannot be pleased with blind submission. 1. 141-152) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 87 . 435-449) 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. i. 1969 (pp. If God leaves man’s loyalty. f. the intelligible and the unintelligible (the dark void). guarded by fear-inspiring armed angels. Further reading 1.4. SAQ 7 1. g. 2. vol. unless he is put in the situation of making choices. but at least they have the mutual comfort of their love. It is his will and desire that give value to things around. 2003 (pp. 1. 2. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). The same rational spirit separates what is vital from what is “adverse to life” (the “infernal dregs”). as God has made him. of the responsibility that accompanies freedom.e. is meant to keep alive the memory of their transgression. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. A Critical History of English Literature.The works of John Milton Architect”). These lines suggest Satan’s formidable strength of will and the independence of his indestructible spirit. b. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. David.). Satan is willing to exchange the happiness of Heaven for the torments in Hell. 4 SAQ 6 For Adam and Eve. under the guidance of Providence. faith and love untested. to be dictated by Reason. SAQ 5 a. He wants man’s obedience to be the result of an act of free choice. c. 153-163) 3. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. 2. 2.4. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. e. unless he exercises his will and reason. of human solidarity. English Literature and Civilisation. and the image of the terrible gates. with passive virtue. Luminiţa Elena. Paradise is now a forbidden place. Daiches. then it is like Heaven for a spirit that cannot accept constraints. who draws a firm line between the formed and the formless (chaos). Forced to look ahead. and for him servitude in Heaven is the real hell. Editura Universităţii Suceava.
220.127.116.11. the frustrated idealist The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 89 89 89 89 90 90 92 93 95 95 96 96 98 98 98 100 103 103 103 105 105 107 107 110 110 111 111 113 115 116 88 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 4. 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. Unit objectives The Restoration and the Augustan Age Restoration drama Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment Dominant forms in Restoration drama Restoration comedy and its character types William Congreve. 4. 4.1.1. 4.3.4. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator.1. 4.2. 18.104.22.168.2. 22.214.171.124.2. 4. 4.2.3. 126.96.36.199.3.The Restoration and the Augustan Age UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE Unit Outline 4.1.4. 188.8.131.52.4.2. 4. 4. 4. Gulliver.1.4. 4.4.6. 4.2. 4.4.2 4. 4.4.
Alexander Pope. Charles II Stuart (reign: 1660-1685) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 89 . ♦ 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. and of considerable diversity. ♦ establish a relation between the spirit of Restoration comedy and the cultural-historical circumstances in which it emerged. was interrupted: Restoration theatre became almost exclusively a form of Court entertainment. Unit objectives 4. 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. ♦ explain the relevance of concepts like Art. it was a period of transition as well. ♦ specify the main targets of satire in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. was attended by a strong anti-Puritan reaction.1. The Puritans had closed theatres in 1642. 4. ♦ identify the main concerns of literary Neoclassicism. Restoration drama marked a clear split between popular and aristocratic standards of taste. the cast of actors included women. clarity and elegant restraint. and their re-opening in 1660. ♦ describe satirical devices used by John Dryden. Nature. the age in which the ideological premises of the Enlightenment were constituted. addressing itself to an inclusive public. under the influence of French theatres. under the patronage of king Charles II. central to the Neoclassic poetics of the Augustan Age.1. drama holds a place apart. Restoration drama The Restoration* was a period of significant social and institutional change. and. grandiose and extravagant in tragedies –.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. Significant changes took place in the theatre: the stage became closed on three sides. and Jonathan Swift. From a literary point of view. its audience being restricted to the fashionable circles gravitating around the Crown. with spectators no longer allowed to sit on it. Human nature. the scenery became more elaborate – more “realistic” in comedies. of increasing rationalism and secularisation. Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment In the heterogeneous literary picture of the Restoration. The Renaissance tradition of the theatre as popular entertainment.1.
although each in its own way and for different reasons. were essential for the true man of the world. or in the survival of love over the criminal machinations of the villains. Conquest and seduction. exotic places. Restoration comedy and its character types Restoration comedy was “class drama. betrayal and mockery were recurrent motives in the comic plots of Restoration drama. lust. The Puritan rigidity and austerity of the former period were repudiated.3.1. wit*. 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. on the other. fashionable manners. grandiloquent declamations and sentimental exaltation. One of the most common types was the rake – the libertine. Another dominant dramatic form during the Restoration was the comedy of manners. refinement and sophistication.2. The range of character types in Restoration comedy was very diverse. The conception of character in Restoration comedy was indebted to the Renaissance comedy of humours*. Restoration comedies dealt primarily with sexual intrigue and the pursuit of pleasure – including the pleasure of cynical manipulation of others. The action was usually set in remote. but they were loveless marriages and love affairs without warmth and affection. jealousy. adultery. ending in Heroic tragedy the death of the hero or heroine or both and the triumph of honour. an artificial. 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. A certain coarseness of feeling. Gallantry.” reflecting the aristocratic ethos of the time. reflected the hedonism* and promiscuity encouraged at court by Charles II himself (nicknamed “the Merry Monarch” for his pleasure-loving way of life). on the one hand. with characters conventionally distributed into fabulously valiant heroes and virtuous beautiful heroines. Sensational turns of situation. It made fun of the people from the countryside. The highest achievement of this kind of baroque theatre was provided by John Dryden’s plays*. Heroic tragedy* was a dramatic development from the epic poem. the licentiousness* and frivolity characterising Restoration comedy were accompanied by a cult for elegance. and absolute villains. Restoration comedy was a mirror of the Comedy of manners environment in which it developed. and its audience was restricted to the exclusive and fashionable circles in London. both of them highly conventional forms. ridiculing their crude manners and lack of sophistication. or Court Wits.1. the cynicism. magnificent settings. Dominant forms in Restoration drama The main kinds of drama were heroic tragedy and comedy of manners. Marriage and the games of love were a prevailing theme. sumptuous costumes. and the characteristic theme was the conflict between love and honour. 4. the 90 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and. above all. of incredible cruelty and perfidy.
whose generosity and kindness are satirised as weaknesses. and the trusting husband as dupe. despising marriage. whose simplicity and ingenuousness made her a perfect prey to the sophisticated seducer. If characters were usually static. with several subplots and with action developing at a fast pace. pleasure-seeking. 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 . the ingénue. selfish and manipulative. usually an unprincipled and heartless married woman. the scheming valet. the plot of Restoration comedy was usually highly complicated. the country squire*. Contrasting types were the coquette. or fool. but whose affectation* became the object of irony and satire. who tried to imitate fashionable manners. Other common character types in Restoration comedy were the country girl. more concerned for his reputation as a wit than for honour. Another frequent type was the fop*. Nell Gwynn (1650-1687). the lusty widow. aspiring to the perfect adventure. lacking complexity. etc.” without scruples. deliberately superficial in construction.The Restoration and the Augustan Age “young-man-about-town. cynical. young or old.
T F 2. 4. If any of them should turn out to be wrong. T F 3.4. frivolity. The Renaissance comedy of humours inspired Restoration dramatists in their construction of dramatic character.1. It displays typical Restoration characters. The true master of Restoration comedy of manners was William Congreve (1679-1723).1. William Congreve. extravagant stage settings and highly rhetorical language. The main themes of heroic tragedy were seduction and the games of love. Restoration theatre introduced professional women actors in performances. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. elegance. such as the impoverished gallant.1. Read the statements below and identify five true ones. 1. Restoration comedy built its plot on a single. to 4. at the end of the unit. who resorts to all kinds of devices to avoid 92 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . by doing the exercise that follows. T F 5. T F 9. T F 7. Heroic tragedy reflected the realities and spirit of the Restoration Age. T F 4.1. His satirical play Love for Love (1695) deals with the contrast between public reputation and private behaviour. simple action. T F 8. The middle classes and their moral code found a mirror in the comedy of the Restoration. refinement and sophistication. William Wycherley* and John Dryden*.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 1 Let us revise some aspects concerning the Restoration drama. hedonism and amorality at Court. a master of satirical comedy of manners Among the most representative authors of comedies during the Restoration period there were George Etherege*.3. T F 6. Restoration comedy praised wit. The Restoration rake as a typical character in comedy was representative for the atmosphere of licentiousness. The baroque character of Restoration heroic tragedy resided in its sensational plot. read again subchapters 4. and satirised clumsy manners and dull simplicity.
consistent characters. Congreve’s merit is to have turned stereotypical characters into credible. psychologically subtle and complex. disapproved of the licentiousness of Restoration comedy. affection. and the shifting relationships and alliances. involving a multitude of characters. the ambivalent motivations and feelings (ranging from love. 4. as these were remote from their experience. Towards the end of the 17 th century. adopting a moralising tone and recommending virtue and sensibility above refinement and wit. 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.The Restoration and the Augustan Age William Congreve (1679-1723) his creditors. but they were now clearly intended for a middle class audience. The rise of sentimental comedy* Congreve belongs to a period of transition in the evolution of comedy. hate and disgust) give this play an equivocal tone. the dramatic productions still preserved characteristic farcical elements and something of the brilliant artificiality of Restoration comedy.5. restore his fortunes and win the love of his mistress. and friendship to jealousy. is extremely complex. half-sad. The new audience in the theatres. when Augustan* England was seeking for social stability and cohesion. bringing it to perfection. the awkward country-girl. etc.1. perfectly aware of each other’s faults and playing various games which keep them on the border between independence and surrender. He is the most gifted of the Restoration dramatists. admiration. the pair of witty lovers. He gave grace to the conventions of a highly artificial form of drama. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 93 . and were not interested in the rituals and games of fashionable life or in the sparkling wit duels. mixed marriages between aristocracy and the newly rich. The indecencies and blasphemous spirit of earlier Restoration comedy became the object of severe condemnation by public opinion. Congreve’s finest comedy is The Way of the World (1700). It has a sophisticated plot containing several strands of action and centering on the relation between Mirabell and beautiful Millamant. The situation. with a rare concern for the accuracy and elegance of expression and for the balance of sentences. increasingly middle class. which reminds of some of Shakespeare’s comedies. the witty and resourceful servant. half-amused. Drama was changing under the pressure of middle class taste.
If there should be significant differences. they establish and agree on the terms of a "contract. but she accepts Mirabell's marriage proposal on certain conditions.4.1. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. However.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 2 In Congreve's play The Way of the World. In a witty dialogue. under the appearance of frivolity. who is sincerely in love with Millamant and wishes to marry her.1. in Act IV.. as well as the indicated fragment." Presenting their expectations from each other in a half-joking way. at the end of the unit.. read again subchapter 4. 94 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which presents Millamant's demands. What is the idea of marriage that her conditions suggest? Answer in the space below. Millamant is also in love. Read Text 4. Mirabell is a reformed rake. their agreement has serious implications. they seem to be playing a game. in no more than 15 lines / 150 words.
elegance.1. in a series of essays and prefaces where he discussed matters of literary composition and taste and defended his own literary practice. or of the heroic couplet* over blank verse*.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Oliver Goldsmith* and Samuel Johnson*. but it represents the quintessence of the Augustan literary ideal. His didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711) is the most outstanding literary manifesto of English Neoclassicism. Pope presents the basic concepts and theses of this literary orientation in a poetic form of remarkable elegance and clarity. In it. such as the superiority of the Ancients over the Moderns. John Dryden illustrated with masterpieces all contemporary literary genres. and Alexander Pope* in the 18 th . 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*. His work doesn’t equal in variety that of his predecessor and master. a society exhausted by civil wars was expressing its need for stability and moderation. English literary Neoclassicism* The Neoclassic aspiration for order. Alexander Pope brought to perfection Dryden’s achievements in poetic style and technique. and propriety would favour the spirit of social unity and order and would contribute to the protection of the achievements of civilisation.2. and he laid the foundations of modern literary criticism. John Dryden (1631-1700) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 95 . 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. 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. Joseph Addison*. His main critical work is An Essay on Dramatic Poesy (1668). in which he systematises his Neoclassic view on literary art. Augustan England believed that a cultural idea of balance. of the elegant French classical drama over English Renaissance drama. other great writers who were influenced by Neoclassicism or defended its doctrine were Jonathan Swift*. Besides Dryden and Pope. 4. The excellence of their literary work and the elegance and force of their critical arguments made them central figures of the Augustan Age. balance.2. and harmony extended beyond literature. In both cases.
but a general intellectual tendency in the age. The study of human nature in its individual aspects. the main source of inspiration for the writer was Nature*. i. of infinite variety. A poet’s innate talent needed training. which referred to the writer’s obligation to use those elements of diction* and composition which were considered proper for each genre. This was the case of the genius. the emphasis on discipline in art.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. which were seen as common to all humanity and as permanent and unchanging. The Augustans were aware that the heights of literary achievement couldn’t be reached by simply learning the trade. on the other hand. It was the existence of this rule of decorum that enabled Neoclassic authors to derive great effects from its deliberate. would lead to the revelation of the typical and universal features. 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. was expected to use a common.2. The Neoclassic emphasis on the principles and rules that guided successful creation did not mean blind adherence to them. required an elevated style. Nature and Reason According to the Neoclassic doctrine. and the poet might disregard them. by which the Augustans meant most frequently Human Nature. and to those patterns of behaviour. in satirical or burlesque* works. skill. the most valuable store of literary experience. which usually presented ordinary people and actions.2. and in order to do that accurately he was supposed to follow Reason as the main guide. whose imagination had nothing to do with training or learning. The quest for patterns of general significance through the study of particulars was not only a literary precept. Epic and tragedy. for instance. was Shakespeare.e. who respected no particular rules and followed no particular models. comedy. humble style. that it was an inborn gift that made a poet. Sometimes rules might be too constraining for this natural gift. Following Nature presupposed first of all its understanding. yet achieve great beauty. for the Augustans.3. to make form and substance adequate to each other. which in turn required good judgment and common sense. The most eloquent example. Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics One of the most important features of literary Neoclassicism was the concern with rules and norms. The rule of decorum 4. a dignified diction. To follow / copy Nature was the writer’s main endeavour. The belief in order and correctness was reflected in the neoclassic principle of decorum [from Latin: propriety]. and whose creative power was a matter of intuitive genius and not of acquired art.2.e. lacking ornament.. since it dealt with noble characters and actions. The concept of Human Nature referred to those features of human character and experience. skilful transgression. i.
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 97 .The Restoration and the Augustan Age A rationalist poetics All the faculties involved in the process of creation were seen as subordinated to Reason. a combination achieved through reason.2. to those of Nicolas Boileau*. or art*.3. in the Reader represents a fragment from Samuel Johnson’s Preface to his 1765 edition of Shakespeare’s works.3. What are the main ideas in this fragment. read again subchapter 4. and the indicated fragment. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.g. If there should be significant differences. SAQ 3 Text 4. and what Neoclassic conviction do they imply? Answer in the space below. Emotion was supposed to be filtered and controlled by reason. and beauty was the result of the balanced combination of talent and inspiration with skill. in a paragraph of no more than 4 complex sentences (80-100 words / 8-10 lines). but also to imported French ideas – e. The rationalist poetics* of Neoclassicism owed greatly to Horace*.
but to be a functional part of the community. with the cultivation of men’s best virtues through polite learning*. where nothing seems to be studied. and he was not supposed to withdraw in an ivory tower. 98 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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. of quick accumulation of information. Ostentation. It must not be forgotten that this was the age of the Enlightenment*. “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. too. Literature was supposed to delight but also to instruct – to offer not only aesthetic pleasure. and which illustrated most eloquently the didactic impulse of all Augustan literature. This ideal of style is best summed up by the Augustan notion of wit. precision and clarity.2. yet everything is extraordinary” (Thomas Sprat*). manners and taste. its effects were considerable on prose.” Augustan wit 4. unnecessary ornament.5. The periodical essay Although the normative poetics of Neoclassicism had in view mainly poetry and drama. of critical debate in every field. The Augustan ideal of style The suitable doctrine for the Age of Reason. The periodical essay is the Augustan prose genre which contributed immensely to the forging of a modern prose style.4. Wit described a style which combined elegance with profundity. A more straightforward style in prose was an imperative in an age so much concerned with education of mentalities. Neoclassicism cultivated an ideal of style characterised in the first place by intellectual clarity and expressive restraint.2. It displayed flexibility skilfully controlled. and the measure of the writer’s skill was his ability to convey an impression of “natural easiness and unaffected grace. eloquence with restraint. of the belief in progress an in man’s perfectibility.3.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and of the increase and diversification of the reading public. affectation were rejected. or. The writer's art was a form of social communication. refinement with wisdom. the language of prose aimed more and more at simplicity. In the context of general progress. as Oliver Goldsmith defined it. 4. “grace and strength united. but also moral edification and standards of good judgment and behaviour.
Many periodical essays were dedicated to the dissemination of philosophical and scientific notions. Essay periodicals were usually the work of a single author. and to offer intellectual enlightenment to a wide audience. contributing significantly to the “polite” education. meant to provide guidance in matters of manners and morals. for a clientele of ships' captains. At the same time. and they were published with varying regularity. opened in 1688. some of them being issued daily. th Edward Lloyd’s coffee house. that “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. The periodical essay constituted a chronicle of contemporary manners and an effective instrument of moral and social criticism. the middle class readers. the periodical essayists aimed at broadening the intellectual horizon of their readers. at cultivating their minds. with Alexander Pope. the debate on a variety of critical and aesthetic issues made the latter familiar to the public. The reflections on both modern and ancient works. the enlightenment and the improvement of taste of its widest section. or to the discussion of literary matters. consisting in essays on a variety of topics. as a reaction to the ever greater demand for political news and gossip. They believed. In order to counterbalance this tendency. at a time when political tension in the country and the events of war on the Continent engaged public attention to a high degree. they created an alternative kind of periodical publication. Journalism and coffee houses* were the main instruments by which people’s curiosity was satisfied.The Restoration and the Augustan Age It developed in the late 17 and early 18th centuries. Some writers felt that this popular avidity for political news might inflame partisanship and favour a spirit of social discord. dominantly middle class. merchants and ship owners 17th century coffee house in Covent Garden Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 99 .” that ignorance is a source of evil.
1. The Tatler and The Spectator. only] a single day sprouts up* in follies that are only to be killed by an assiduous culture. Like other writers. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. on a separate sheet. and Joseph Addison’s The Spectator (1711-1714). and by far the most popular ones. in no more than 12 lines / 120 words. were Richard Steele*’s The Tatler* (1709-1711).The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 4 In one of his periodical essays.e. Explain the analogy that his observation invites us to develop. at the end of the unit. 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). collected in book form. whose essays were published several times in the century. think again and try to do the exercise once more. they tried to make their essays not only instructive but also attractive and amusing. To increase the efficiency of their undertaking.3. 100 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . If they are significantly different. Joseph Addison wrote: The mind that lies fallow* but [i. “The Spectator’s Club” Among the most important periodical essayists. 4. Think of present relevance of this remark.
and his harmless eccentricities are accompanied by a natural benevolence that endears him to everybody. taciturn and with “no interest in this world. He is a pleasant company for his acquaintances in town. an embodiment of its energies and enterprising spirit. in his county.” but whose life constitutes an eloquent example of moral integrity. for instance. he is a somewhat old-fashioned gentleman. He believes. a middle-aged squire. a competent justice of the peace*. modest and commonsensical person. Spectator” on their opinions and behaviour in a variety of circumstances constituted real lessons in manners and morals. a man of the world. a courageous. a rich London merchant. manners.” • Captain Sentry. He is the prototype for the character of the country squire in many 18th century novels. The six members of The Spectator’s Club were: • Sir Roger de Coverley.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Joseph Addison (1672-1719) For example. a model of honesty. generous and cheerful. His character is the first notable literary representation of the merchant class in a serious and dignified way. idleness] has ruined more nations than the sword. “a very philosophic man. • A clergyman. steady effort] makes more lasting acquisitions than valour [i.” He thus embodies the Augustan humanist view that true knowledge of human nature comes from a combination of first hand experience and learning. Steele and Addison invented The Spectator’s Club. and sloth [i. • Sir Andrew Freeport. an expert in fashion and gossip.” He is a worthy representative of the middle class. who had spent a turbulent youth in the company of the Restoration Wits. “a person of indefatigable industry*. laziness.e. 101 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .” of wide learning. Now. • A gentleman who. skills] and industry. rather than a merit. for The Spectator. wit and understanding. ready to take responsibility for the progress of the nation. a gallant. actions and writings of the ancients makes him a very delicate observer of what occurs to him in the world. who had to quit the military profession because his strict honesty proved to be an obstacle to the advancement of his career. instead of pursuing the career of a lawyer.e. Sir Andrew Freeport’s convictions are those of an enlightened middle class. as his father had intended for him.e. interested in his appearance and displaying a certain affectation in behaviour. His wisdom and gravity are set against the frivolous interests of Will Honeycombe.” or that “diligence [i. and great experience. a group of six fictional characters “engaged in different ways of life” and representing various social and human types. for true power is to be got by arts [i. that “it is stupid and barbarous way to extend dominion by arms. in which they collaborated.e. but their good breeding qualifies them both for the same society of gentlemen. • Will Honeycomb. otherwise harmless and a well-bred gentleman. He is a man of “great probity. bravery in battle]. turned to the study of literature.” and “his familiarity with the customs. no longer as repulsively materialistic and greedy. hard work and skill. and the reflections of “Mr. strong reason. Many essays presented little stories about incidents in their daily lives.
cheerful disposition. 6. which are important for the Enlightenment ideal of social integration. read again subchapter 4. Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729) 102 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 3. If there should be major discrepancies. common sense. a cultivated mind and superior understanding. 1.1. combining the external marks of social decency (pleasant conversation. 5.3. SAQ 5 From the description of the members of the Spectator’s Club. 2. 7. 8. more carefully. the talent of never offending the others) with such qualities as moral and physical courage. it is clear that Addison promotes certain virtues.The Restoration and the Augustan Age The gentleman represented an ideal of social behaviour. 4. and write them in the indicated spaces below. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Identify at least eight such features.
king David. Perhaps the greatest Augustan satire on the world of letters is Alexander Pope’s The Dunciad* (1728. Absalom is the latter’s illegitimate son. turning it into an allegory of contemporary political struggles. selfishness. folly. to religious debates and literary practices. Bayes*. struggle for power and profit. The biblical characters represent English political figures: King David is Charles II. with implications concerning the whole of Augustan civilisation. at the advice of Achitophel* (cf.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. The writers’ sense of mission turned them into guardians of the enlightened values of their time. the instigator of the opposition to Catholic James Stuart. Pope. 1743). and its most outstanding representatives – Dryden. John Dryden A remarkable example of political satire is John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel (1681-1682). and satire became their formidable weapon.4. could not entirely remove or hide its tensions. its cult of reason and common sense.2. are mingled: the evil conspirator. 4. a merciless attack on literary pedantry and dulness. The perfection of Dryden’s diction and his masterful use of the sketches heroic couplet* combine with his brilliant of character. hypocrisy.4. whose claim to the throne was justified by his Protestant religion. Charles’s brother and heir to the throne. The Augustan Age is the great age of satire in English literature. admiration and condemnation. Samuel. disloyal and excessively ambitious. a passionate. Political and religious dissensions. often touched by ironic humour. urbanity and refinement made it a sophisticated instrument of correction. appears also as a stormy spirit. Alexander Pope Satirical attacks on literary mediocrity and incompetence were frequent in an age so preoccupied with standards of correctness and excellence. The hero of this mock-heroic epic* is Mr. The best achieved portrait is that of Achitophel / the Earl of Shaftesbury. brave and fearless man. Augustan satire The refinement and elegant surface of the Augustan Age. greed. 15-18). the Duke of Monmouth. Swift – aimed it at a variety of targets. and affectation were felt as diseases which threatened to weaken the force. intrigues. 4.4. 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 . Augustan satire defended the values of civilisation in a civilised way: elegance. It tells the biblical story of Absalom’s rebellion against his father. from political and social life. genuinely gifted for leadership. in which Dryden’s praise and criticism. and Achitophel is the first Earl of Shaftesbury. contradictions and dark aspects.1. stability and order of a remarkable civilisation.
Philosophy. and skill in the use of parody and the burlesque. Art. Religion. SAQ 6 Text 4. in a paragraph not exceeding 12 lines / 120 words. that the corruption of the spirit (which follows from the corruption of the word) leads to the crumbling of all order. and revise subchapter 4. Here. concerning satire. are more disturbing than entertaining. pointing out the Augustan conception of satire. more attentively. imaginative inventiveness.e. 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. Pope’s satirical allegory displays unequalled comic virtuosity and wit. imagination). Explain this analogy. The empire of Dulness finally extends to the whole universe of the spirit. If it should be significantly different. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. he reflects on the art of the satirist. in the Reader represents a fragment from one of John Dryden’s essays. read the fragment again.2.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Alexander Pope (1688-1744) critics who aspire to undeserved fame. and Morality. Compare your answer with the suggestions provided at the end of the unit. Its implications. Truth. Science. 104 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .4. drawing an analogy between satire and a public execution. and the satire ends with the apocalyptic extinction of the enemies of Dulness: Fancy (i. however. as it betrays Pope’s fear that civilisation and its conquests are vulnerable to unreason.
His hurt sensitivity and disillusionment are conveyed in a series of prose satires which cover a wide range of issues – political. Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) 4. or softening marble to make pincushions. economic. These satires have established his reputation as a champion of moral virtue.A Voyage to Brodingnag III. in his potential as a rational creature. building houses starting from the roof. The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Consisting of four books. a hater of pedantry and pretence. where mad scientists are engaged in phantasmagoric projects. absorbed in mathematical speculations and music. is inhabited by impractical intellectuals. In his third voyage he visits several strange places. In Balnibarbi. bigger than himself. social and intellectual realities. Back in England. The most powerful expression of Swift’s satirical genius is Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World “by Lemuel Gulliver. curious and resourceful. religious.A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnhnms Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Glubbdubdrib. Like many of his contemporaries.” therefore a potential threat to that civilisation. and literary.A Voyage to Lilliput II. Laputa. Gulliver finds himself among people who are twelve times smaller and. Gulliver is cast on the shore of a country inhabited by the Houyhnhnms. and where human creatures. and his nostalgia for the perfect world of the 105 I.A Voyage to Laputa. justice and freedom.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. whose adventures as a surgeon and then the captain of several ships take him through the most unusual places. the flying island. because he is perceived as a Yahoo endowed with “a rudiment of reason. is one of the greatest satirists in world literature. an uncompromising defender of truth. he is shown the Academy of Lagado (a burlesque of the Royal Society). popular in the 16th and 17th centuries. but the significance of his work may be extended to the philosophical question of the human condition itself. Luggnagg and Japan IV. respectively.4. Gulliver is finally expelled.3. From this last country. the Yahoos. philosophical. In Luggnagg.” a work which Swift published anonymously in 1726. Swift was divided between the idealist confidence in man’s capacity of selfimprovement. he learns about the Struldbruggs. with a sharp sense of observation. It is an allegorical satirical travel book. Gulliver’s Travels pretends to be the record of the most astonishing experiences of an average man. a race of immortal people whose eternal life is in fact a curse of endless decay. intelligent speaking horses. Jonathan Swift. Jonathan Swift Pope’s friend. Balnibarbi.4. with elements of the marvelous or fantastic fable. as well as an unequalled master of satirical wit and irony.4. appear in the utmost state of degeneracy. whose admirable society is built entirely on rational principles. In it. In Lilliput and Brobdingnag. like extracting sunshine from cucumbers. Gulliver can’t help seeing his fellow humans as disgusting Yahoos. Swift alludes satirically to a multitude of aspects from the contemporary political. and the disappointment and anger at seeing reason so often abused. In his last voyage. combining the conventions of utopia* and of the imaginary voyage.
from the Reader. The parallel results in a grotesque image of humankind. and he also re-interprets attitudes observed in the Yahoos in the light of the information received from Gulliver about human customs and institutions. four features which humans and Yahoos are found to share. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. incapable of suffering the proximity of humans. Each answer should be limited to 3 lines / 30 words. 106 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His initial curiosity and openness to the diversity of human nature turns into madness and misanthropy. in Text 4. and he prefers now the company of horses. 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). If none of the features mentioned there corresponds with your answers.5. read the fragment carefully once more. Find. 3. 1. 4. 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. at the end of the unit. 2.
with its religious controversies among Anglicans. forgetting that man holds a middle place in the Great Chain of Being*.6. to integrate Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 107 . he is actually physically vulnerable in this world. Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia In the first two books of Gulliver’s Travels. The error of Gulliver* is that he adopts an impossible deal of perfection. means de-humanisation. his real humiliation is caused by the unflattering contrast between his own race and civilisation. its political parties – Whigs and Tories –. issues or figures. he sees ideal creatures.). as he is in permanent danger from creatures so much larger than him. and he realises how far man is from moral perfection. with the hardest dilemma and the deepest humiliation. his vulnerability increases. ambitious. In spite of Gulliver’s dimensions (an allegorical representation of his complex of superiority). etc. in his last adventure. 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. cruel and hypocritical. ruled by an enlightened monarch. Gulliver. and they constitute a miniature picture of England. Gulliver is confronted. from which he chooses to leave. between those who wear shoes with high heels and with low heels. Dissenters and Catholics. the frustrated idealist After the comic-disturbing examples of unreason witnessed in his third voyage. he contemplates with shame and despair all the imperfections of the human race. Political corruption is institutionalised (for example. However. Gulliver’s failure to accept the mixed essence of man. the highest offices in the state are obtained by those who know how to entertain the king best. and the utopian commonwealth of Brobdingnag. The Lilliputians’ physical smallness is accompanied by moral flaws – they prove to be mean. Their non-human shape suggests that the absence of passion. etc. or between those who break a boiled egg at the round end – the "Big Endians" – and those who break it at the pointed end). its thirst for war – the endless conflict with France. The Houyhnhnms may be an allegorical embodiment of moral perfection attained through the exercise of pure reason. physical size indicates allegorically features of human nature.4. but their universe is completely deprived of emotion and feeling. In the Houyhnhnms. by dancing on a rope.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. of the capacity for affection. Their society is deeply divided by absurd dissensions: for example. jumping over or creeping under a stick. He is no longer certain of the essence of his own nature.5. Gulliver in Brobdingnag 4. The fourth voyage. These comic details are satirical allusions to contemporary or recent events. vain. governed only by reason.4. The Yahoos and the Houyhnhnms are a double mirror for Gulliver. and his position in that strange land is highly ambiguous. In the Yahoos. In Brobdingnag.
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. In a “theological” perspective. filthy. For many readers. or as opposite caricatural views of man in the state of nature.The Restoration and the Augustan Age reason with feeling and instinct. and he ultimately becomes the target of Swift’s irony. unteachable and ungovernable. while the Houyhnhms would represent man who has escaped the consequences of the original sin.illustration from a 1947 edition of Gulliver’s Travels 108 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the Yahoos embodied Swift’s own vision of mankind as hopelessly degraded. Houyhnhnm and Yahoo . The last book of Gulliver’s Travels has been given a multitude of interpretations. The Houyhnhms and the Yahoos have also been seen as allegorical representations of Reason and Instinct.
find anti-utopian elements in it. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 109 . Utopian aspects: Anti-utopian aspects Compare your answer with the one provided at the end of the unit. If there should be major differences. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. from the Reader.4. the Houyhnhnms’ society is perfect – a true utopia.6. Point out both kinds of aspects in the description contained in Text 4. you need to read the fragment again.6. Formulate your answer in no more than 10 lines / 100 words for each aspect. For Gulliver. however. and to revise subchapter 4. The careful reader will. more carefully. and by mixing the desirable with the unacceptable.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.
Like heroic tragedy (e. Its flourishing in the Augustan Age reflects the integration of literature with social life. therefore also capable of error.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and recommended as a model the literary wisdom of the Ancients. a masterpiece of irony which places under scrutiny many of the myths of the Enlightenment. The latter’s eminently rationalist poetics placed emphasis on clarity and elegance in style and composition. grotesque. accommodating a diversity of literary forms and traditions – old and new.4. Steele). Addison. It is an age of transition.7. A representative literary genre for this age is the comedy of manners (Etherege. parody. Johnson are central figures of the Augustan Age. It cultivated the idea of the “marriage” of Art and Nature. was another characteristic genre. Gradually. etc. Steele. and he used every weapon in the satirist’s arsenal to awaken man from his selfcomplacency: biting irony. While heroic drama sustained an impossible. Summary The Restoration is a historical and a literary period. and. generally. but also an enduring achievement of the enlightened spirit. One of the literary forms that developed during this period was the periodical essay (Addison. the writers’ sense of responsibility towards the values of their civilisation. He intended to “vex the world” in order to “mend” it. Goldsmith. Pope) and in prose (Swift). on the rule of decorum. the pressure of the taste of the rising middle class replaced it with sentimental comedy. Dryden). The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Gulliver’s Travels is the expression of Swift’s indignation and anger at man’s foolishness. The period of the Restoration overlaps with the emerging Augustan Age. Dryden. including that of Reason itself. reason was not to be taken for granted: man was only a creature capable of reason. Congreve. Satire. caricature. placing wit above virtue. comedy was licentious and cynical. narrow-sightedness. Swift. a wide public. on expressive restraint and skilfully controlled wit. dominantly middle class. and his brilliant wit make Gulliver’s Travels not only a landmark in Augustan literature. and by means of it. inflated ideal of heroism and virtue. on Reason and common sense in aesthetic choice.). For Swift. Pope. was enlightened in matters of literary taste and intellectual achievements. Swift’s extraordinary inventiveness and narrative gift. which contributed greatly to the development of a modern prose style. 110 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . both in verse (Dryden. the belief in progress and improvement in an age which was also that of the Enlightenment. Swift’s allegorical satire Gulliver’s Travels is the most accomplished exploration of the contradictions of the Age of Reason.g. when literary Neoclassicism developed. this highly artificial and conventional form was an expression of the taste of the Court aristocracy. It was a chronicle of manners and an instrument of social and moral criticism. Dryden. his learning and sense of literary tradition. arrogant ignorance and unfounded pride in his reason.
political or religious orientation. coffee houses: since the 1650s.1. Augustan: see Augustan Age in the Glossary in Unit 1. profession or interest. baroque: see again subchapter 2. art: in the Neoclassic doctrine.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. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. affectation: a manner of speech. all the acquisitions of the human spirit become meaningless. Dulness as “Great Anarch” is the ruler of spiritual chaos. which designated a fashionable. Art may generally refer to the work of man. or escort. it may also refer to a woman’s lover. dress or behaviour which is not natural. “Will’s Coffee House. Anarch: a personification of anarchy. and the Glossary in Unit 2. greatly concerned with appearances. but is intended to impress others. they were convenient places for socialising and for the dissemination of news. acquiring quickly the status of real “institutions” of opinion. well-dressed man. In Pope’s satire. in the 2nd Book of Kings (verses 15-18). In her empire of darkness and confusion.1. the acquired competence of the writer. his craftsmanship. For instance. gathered people of the literary profession or interested in literary matters.” where Dryden would come regularly. achieved by training and practice. admirer. or human skill (as contrasted to the work of Nature). They were usually frequented by people of the same social rank. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. beaux: plural of beau (“handsome” in French). 111 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
and distinction. unexciting. mock-heroic epic: see mock-heroic style and epic in the Glossary in Unit 1. justice of the peace: a person appointed by the crown to judge less serious cases in small courts of law. fop: a man who is excessively concerned with fashion and elegance. honour. to deceive). In the 1743 version of The Dunciad. landscape.” another word for “laurel”. inclination. who had criticised Pope for his edition of Shakespeare (1725). Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. slowness in thinking and learning. “Dull” also means uninteresting.4. dulness: in a strict sense. referring not only to external nature. but to the whole of created reality. industry: the quality of being hard-working or of being always employed usefully. heroic tragedy: see again subchapter 1.” a “force inertly strong” which corrupts understanding and confuses the mind. stupidity. Pope replaced Theobald by Colley Cibber. Bayes. figuratively: undeveloped or inactive. from dunce. Dunciad: the title is coined after The Iliad. Bayes: a name which was frequently applied satirically to a writer. It derives from “bay. Mr. or “humour. a strictly ordered hierarchical system. Pope uses the word in the enlarged sense of “all slowness of apprehension. Bayes” refers to Lewis Theobald. shortness of sight or imperfect sense of things. In Pope’s satire. In this kind of comedy. Dryden himself had been attacked several times as “Mr. Gulliver: the name sounds very similar to the adjective “gullible. hedonism: a lifestyle devoted to the seeking of sensual pleasure.” Nature: an inclusive concept. trait . the bay-leaf crown was the ancient emblem of fame. fallow: (about land) left unplanted or unseeded.” which means easy to fool or persuade to believe something (from “to gull”: to cheat.” diction : see poetic diction in the Glossary in Unit 1. licentiousness: uncontrolled sexual behaviour. which conceived of every being in nature as having its well-established place in an uninterrupted chain of increasing degrees of complexity. “Mr. i. in which the destruction of one “link” would bring chaos. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. Great Chain of Being: an ancient world-picture. boring.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • comedy of humours: see Jonson in the Glossary in Unit 1. the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 112 .3 in Unit 1. surviving through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance into the 18th century.3 in Unit 1 (heroic drama). a word designating a person who is stupid or slow to learn.e. who in 1730 had become Poet Laureate. characters were constructed on the basis of a particular disposition.
author of poems.3 in Unit 1) and of comedies of manners. wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. polite learning: the knowledge acquired through classical education (polite: refined. Restoration Wits: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • cosmic harmony and order manifested in the appearances of this world. or who chats or talks idly. i. he translated from ancient authors. and topos = place). uncreated word: with reference to the literary world.4 in Unit 1.1. He established the periodical essay as a literary genre. in which he outlines the features of an ideal.” from Greek u = not. sprout up: to begin to grow or develop. Boileau. John (1637-1700): one of the most outstanding figures of the Restoration and the Augustan Age.4. Joseph (1672-1719): representative of English literary Neoclassicisn. founder of literary journalism. whose poem L’art poétique (1674) established the canons of taste and the standards of literary judgement for European Neoclassicism. Among the latter. making literature “dull. He was equally successful as an author of heroic dramas (see again subchapter 1. Marriage à la Mode (1672) distinguishes itself by its brilliant wit combats and effective social satire. especially the main landowner in a village. and he contributed significantly to the dissemination of the values of the Enlightenment in England. of imagination and originality.3 in Unit 5. this phrase suggests the lack of inspiration. Dryden. for the notion of sentimentalism. Pope’s satire warns thus about the dangers of lowering literary standards. elegant.” utopia: a genre in fiction whose name comes from Sir Thomas More’s work Utopia (1516). of taste or skill. and he was the pioneer of modern English literary criticism. essays and dramatic works. poetics: the system of principles and conventions which govern a certain literary form. Neoclassicism: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.e. Tatler: a “tattler” is a person who gossips.4. 113 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . or literature in general. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Gallery of personalities • • • Addison. perfect society (literally: “no place. sentimental comedy see again subchapter 1. and sentimental novel in subchapter 5. squire: a country gentleman. polished). Nicolas (1636-1711): outstanding French poet and critic. He excelled in all literary genres of his time. the conception about literature and the creative act of a certain literary school or writer.
William (1697-1764): painter and engraver.” Horace: Quintus Horatius Flavius (65-8 B. Like his friend. a masterpiece of 18th century fiction. he endeavoured to lift Latin literature to the level of Greek literature. Together with Addison. Besides his famous Gulliver’s Travels. political and moral vices. 114 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . of Irish origin. or Sir Fopling Flutter (1676).C. William (1640-1716): one of the Restoration Wits. Goldsmith. as well as the mock-heroic poem The Rape of the Lock (1712). satires and epistles. 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. an unequalled master of irony and wit. which contains an allegorical satire on the division of the Christian Church. Sprat. he contributed to the spreading of Enlightenment ideas. Latin poet of the time of Caesar Augustus. In the mock-heroic allegory The Battle of the Books (1704). clear. Pope. and of the influential critical work Ars Poetica. as well as to the forging of a polished literary prose style. his works include A Tale of a Tub (1704). Hogarth. His best comedies are She Would If She Could (1668). Swift.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • Etherege. preoccupied by the cultivation of an English style that should be simple. Steele. George (1634-1691): a member of the group of Restoration Wits. and A Modest Proposal (1729). and The Man of Mode. Jonathan (1667-1745): the greatest English satirist. in which he is the optimistic spokesman of the Age of Reason. He was a friend of the novelist Henry Fielding. Wycherley. Richard (1672-1725): Augustan essayist and dramatist (he established sentimental comedy on the English stage). extremely popular owing to his “modern moral subjects” – a series of paintings or engravings which tell a story and constitute a comment on social. Virgil. Thomas (1635-1713): mathematician and writer. Oliver (1728-1774): upholder of the Neoclassic standards of style and composition. who called him a “comic history-painter.). Among various other works. member of the Royal Society. he is the author of the novel The Vicar of Wakefield (1766). a bitter satire in defense of the Irish people. author of odes. and a major representative of English sentimentalism. Samuel: see the Gallery of personalities in Unit 2. concise and flexible. His works include the philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). he argues for the superiority of the Ancients over modern authors. Johnson. Alexander (1688-1744): the most illustrious representative of English literary Neoclassicism.
The Restoration and the Augustan Age Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. by the standards of her social environment.T. 6. Culture is thus seen as an improvement of nature. which may be cultivated or left to “lie fallow. SAQ 3 The pleasure of contemplating representations of “general nature” – i. and she proposes to reject the social rituals and fashions that would require them to wear masks. modesty.T. the refusal to make a public show of their affection. 9. in an analogous sense. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 115 .T. 5. SAQ 4 Addison builds an analogy between the human mind and a field. 7. common sense. because he succeeded in rendering the general “truths” of human nature.T.F. 3. Addison’s observation reflects the faith in man’s intellectual and moral perfectibility through responsible education – an attitude characteristic of the Enlightenment. industry. a way of protecting their intimacy and their feelings. furnished with ideas. is. benevolence. and.F SAQ 2 Millamant has an unconventional view of marriage. of those features which are universal. reasonableness.e. sense of responsibility. of Human nature. good sense. Civilised reserve in society. wild plants growing where they are not wanted) will invade an uncultivated field. She also refuses to see marriage as a limitation of the woman’s freedom. His characters embody the fundamental human passions which will always move mankind.” Shakespeare will appeal to readers across the ages.T. so the mind which is not assiduously and constantly cultivated – i. regardless of their particular condition. good breeding. opinions and tastes. 8. 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. integrity. Dryden makes an analogy between the sharp blade of the executioner’s sword and the sharp irony and wit of the satirist. Johnson implies that an author’s greatness depend on his insight into Human Nature. 4. each partner should accept and respect the other’s wishes. for sophisticated Millamant. SAQ 6 Satire is the art of pointing at people’s faults without resorting to insult or calumny. or judgment.e.” Just as weeds (i. open-mindedness.F. abdicating from reason.F. and should not try to impose his/her habits on the other. diligence. She wishes for a sincere and authentic relationship. and she rejects the idea of the wife’s subordination.e. 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. SAQ 5 honesty. 2. good judgment. educated to think – will employ itself with trifles.
” SAQ 7 1. which breeds imaginary ills. Both of them need skill – or “art” – to do this in a satisfactory way. the education in the spirit of moderation and industry. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. and no personal choice in the matter of marriage. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). decency and civility are certainly desiderata of any civilisation. The incapacity of choosing a ruler according to real merit. SAQ 8 Utopian aspects: The cultivation and exercise of reason. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. and the hierarchy of their society is based on racial discrimination (“inferior” Houyhnhnms will fatally be servants). and the equal education of males and females was a progressive Enlightenment ideal. which is meant only for procreation. deprives their thinking of flexibility and nuance.. 537-550) 2. Cornelia. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. Ioan-Aurel (coord. 5. Womankind’s lustfulness and inclination to coquetry. The Houyhnhms are not divided by quarrels. 180-187) 3. A Critical History of English Literature.33-66) 116 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 4. In the absence of affective attachment. which are the literary equivalent of a man’s “slovenly butchering. English Literature and Civilisation. Preda. David. civility and friendship become a cold and superficial form of social relationship.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Just as the executioner will implacably carry out the capital punishment. The irrational greed and avarice. 1969 (pp. 2003 (pp. conflict and self-interest.). which makes social progress inconceivable. the silly behaviour of women determined to draw attention to themselves. The civilised art of satire is opposed to the coarseness and brutality of personal attack and insult. Further reading 1. vol. Editura Universităţii Suceava. the “fineness. Anti-utopian aspects: the absolutisation of reason. 3. The English Eighteenth Century. 1983 (pp. only the species counts. so the satirist is merciless in his denouncing human flaws. Daiches.” the subtlety of his accusations. the generalises extension of friendship and benevolence. The Novel in Its Beginnings. the jealousy (envy) and the aggressiveness towards one’s fellows. 2. The spirit of competition. the exclusion of opinion. ultimately of imagination. the “unnatural appetite” for things whose value doesn’t justify the effort and energy spent in their acquisition and preservation. The tendency to idleness. The art of the accomplished satirist consists in the elegance. the rulers’ habit of surrounding themselves by favourites whose role is to flatter and to encourage them in their abuses. the ability of the worst to set themselves as leaders. The tyranny of reason also rules out affection and emotion: they have no particular feelings for their own offspring. The individual is of no importance. They practice population control. Macsiniuc.
2. 5.4.2. 184.108.40.206.6.1.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. 220.127.116.11. 5.4. 5.3.1. 5.7.2. 5.3. 18.104.22.168. 5. Unit objectives The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Background and main concerns Novel and romance in the 18th century Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Typology of the novel in the 18th century Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Interpretations of Robinson Crusoe Defoe’s style Samuel Richardson’s contribution to the development of the novel The plot of Pamela. 22.214.171.124.4.2. 126.96.36.199.2.1. 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 . 188.8.131.52.1.4. 5. 5. 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 Gallery of personalities SAA No. 5.3. 5. 5. 5.4.3. 5.3. 5. 5. 5.3.2. 184.108.40.206. 220.127.116.11.4.
5. in various aspects of the novels discussed in this unit.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify. and their involvement with literary life was increasing.1. the rise of the middle classes. and whose protagonists were of noble stock.1. whose vast majority was middle-class. of a genre which became the main rival of the novel: the romance. Romances were long narratives combining heroic adventure and passionate love. Such tales gratified the fantasies of a class of readers who were still barred from public self-assertion. and the development of the novel. tolerance. confined to the 118 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but there was a considerable amount of novels written by women. and there is a connection between. Novel and romance in the 18th century The dominance of female readership explains the enduring popularity. The late 17 th century had seen a flourishing of this kind of fiction. This new literary form embodied the democratic and revolutionary impulse of a century in which the issues of individual liberty. whose action was often set in remote. more inclusive reading public. mostly imitations of French models. Background and main concerns The novel’s emergence is commonly associated with the aspiration of the middle classes to overcome cultural marginality. Women’s education was beginning to be encouraged. a certain tendency to women’s emancipation. natural rights. A significant part of this new reading public consisted in women. 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. Not only were women the most numerous “consumers” of novels. and generally about women. emancipation and progress received unprecedented prominence and were vital for the self-assertion of the new class. The general growth of literacy* in the 18 th century led to the rise of a new.1. exotic settings. in the early years of the 18 th century. 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.
it recommended patterns of behaviour and models of success that were relevant to the condition of middle class readers. its normality. the novel’s didactic vocation. 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. to their relevance for the reader’s aspirations and possibilities. Realism – or. in the novel. a reality that was close to the average reader’s experience became a source of imaginative interest. Characters are no longer idealised.2. The readers of novels could identify themselves with the characters. On the one hand. the novel’s aspiration was to fulfil the double mission of all Augustan literature: to entertain (to divert) and to instruct (to edify).1. On the other hand. The novelist no longer drew his plots from mythology. The novel proposed norms of moral conduct and standards of social integration. its emphasis on individual experience is the literary expression of the spirit of individualism associated with the growing importance of the middle classes.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel domestic universe. truth to Nature – is what primarily distinguished the novel from romance. The represented experience was meant to engage the reader’s interest both because it was familiar and because of its uniqueness. by common people. or previous literature. moral or psychological detail. It attempted to correct morals and educate manners by censuring vice and folly. its determination to participate in the general Augustan quest for an ideal of social harmony. For most women. the novel reflected the general critical spirit of the Age of the Enlightenment and participated in its project of emancipation through education. The ordinary aspects of life. its endeavour to propagate a certain moral and social code. The novel reflects. in its concerns. legend. Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Whereas the basic aim of romance was to entertain. a double tendency of the Age of the Enlightenment. the province of the novel was the familiar. socially and materially dependent on men. but distinct individualities. history. in Augustan terms. but from contemporary life. By contrast. whose province was the spectacular and the extraordinary. The knights and princesses of romances were replaced. because the depicted experience and universe were more or less familiar to them. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 119 . vague and abstract figures. Thus. shows its assumed responsibility towards contemporary civilisation. with entertainment frequently subordinated to the instructive aim. realised with an unprecedented wealth of social. romances were therefore literature of escape. In spite of the great diversity of novels in the 18th century. their common denominator was the attempt to convey an impression of authentic experience. 5.
and 5. and public/social norms and conventions. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … 5.1. … 4. 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. SAQ 1 Complete the sentences below. 1. at the end of the unit. If there should be major differences.2. constitute the foundation of all novelistic plots in the 18 th century.1. Two or three lines (20-30 words) should be enough for each completion. The tensions and conflicts between private/individual convictions and inclinations. Women were … 3.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel offers imaginative versions of the reconciliation of these two tendencies. on the one hand. by centering its interest on the relationship between the individual and his/her social environment. The rise of the middle classes … 2. Each full statement should describe a general aspect concerning the rise of the novel as a genre in the 18th century. read again subchapters 5. on the other. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. 120 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1.
The motif of the travel is central. They invariably contain the motif of the journey. or explore personal conflicts which involve different sets of values (e. The sentimental hero/heroine unites a remarkably acute sensibility with spotless virtue and a deep sense of honour. exposing their irrelevance and unreality. in which the action is episodic. • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 121 .e. an opportunity for comprehensive social criticism. their distance from the every day experience of common readers. popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. but they differ from romances in their attention to realistic detail. and the hero’s various encounters are. The most popular kinds of novels in the 18th century were: Adventure novels share with romances an emphasis on action.g. from which it borrowed devices. the comic vision is always in the service of social and moral criticism. irony and burlesque*. Sentimentalism became a literary fashion. the romance). for the author. • • The novel of manners submits to the reader’s judgements various types of social behaviour. • 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. loosely structured. belonging to several categories at once. since this kind of fiction subverts the prestige of older genres (the epic. i. Many novels cut across divisions. a wide variety of influences went into its making. but to literature as well. confusion. This makes the 18th century novel rather difficult to classify.g. inclusive.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. therefore an ally to realism. Instead. The characteristic comic plot presupposes the passage from disorder. which claim the reader’s attention more than the characters do. and its beginnings are defined by a tendency to “sponge” on other literary forms. On the other hand. • Picaresque* novels may be considered a special case of adventure novels.3. displayed not only in fiction. The comic novel in the 18th century is inscribed in a long tradition of deflation of romance.1. It may either offer a comprehensive mirror of the social diversity of the age (e. but also in poetry and in drama. repetitious. Typology of the novel in the 18th century The novel as a genre had no authoritative. in imitation of the descriptive accuracy of travel literature. forms of expression. and the world represented in such novels is open. romance is trivialised through parody*. examining the conflicts between private morality and public expectation. patterns and motifs. The analysis of sentimental response was meant to elicit from the reader an empathic understanding. Richardson). classic models to follow. misfortune to the solution of all conflicts and the integration of the protagonist in a social structure. and extremely diverse. on events. and which emphasised the importance of feeling and its close connection with moral virtue. The comic novel is an opportunity for writers to display a critical attitude not only to reality. Fielding).
________________________ 8. The achievement of maturity leads to the hero’s satisfactory social integration. It centres on intellectual debate and confrontation of ideas. and his/her experiences provide a satirical survey of the contemporary society..1. It defines itself in contrast with the “serious” narrative genres. ________________________ 2. It offers more delight in ________________________ action than in character. ________________________ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. trivial subjects. Two of these descriptions do not match any of the types of novels described in the subchapter above. after each sentence. 3. If you have failed to match any of the descriptions with the right type of novel. It presents a tale of mystery and horror. It is concerned with the individual’s full assertion as a social being. It explores the diversity of social manners and their articulation with moral values. deliberately reducing the importance of plot or emotional conflict. this illustrates the concern of the Enlightenment with the development of the individual as a social being. ________________________ 4.3. It explores the labyrinth of emotion and feeling. 122 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in an atmosphere of gloom. Its hero is a marginal figure who aspires to social success. at the end of a process in which he/she learns to accord private impulse with social expectation. • SAQ 2 What kinds of novels do the following sentences describe? Write the answer in the space indicated by the continuous line.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel of education (the Bildungsroman*) is concerned with the formation of character through the accumulation of experience. in their confrontation with moral choice. ________________________ 5. ________________________ 7. at the end of the unit. mocking their elevated style by applying it to common. read again subchapter 5. 1. ________________________ 6. usually with supernatural ingredients.
Puritan* background. They are pragmatic. Both of them enjoyed enormous popularity not only in England. 5. is invariably accompanied by moral reformation. to the influence. This confers vividness to their narratives. and tracing the protagonists’ struggles to achieve material prosperity as a condition of a stable social position. and their adventures show the individual victorious over circumstances and environment (physical or social). on the movements of consciousness and the emotional response to moral problems. Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Defoe’s career as a novelist started with his masterpiece. when the writer was almost sixty. the power to hold attention and keep curiosity awake. Both Defoe and Richardson display in their narratives a remarkable faithfulness to detail. and both of them focus on the individual in his/her struggle of securing a legitimate position in the social structure. in circumstantial details. the constant striving towards accuracy of description. several adventure novels. Mariner. cast in a picaresque form. dynamic and versatile.2. This aspect in Defoe’s novels points to his Puritan background. They share a middle class. Richardson focuses on the inner world of thought and feeling.2. Their rise to social respectability and wealth. Its tremendous success encouraged Defoe to produce. of such non-fictional kinds of writing as the spiritual autobiography or didactic religious treatises. His heroes are remarkable in their vitality. their social insertion. in the next years. in actions. on the individual’s striving towards some form of personal achievement. published in 1719. The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York. They were all stories of success. resourcefulness and capacity for adjustment and survival.1. on his fiction. but also on the Continent. establishing it as the most popular literary genre in the 18th century. Features of Defoe’s heroes Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 123 . Defoe and Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Each of these two novelists had an essential contribution to the rise of the novel. They differ in the objects of their “realistic” approach: whereas Defoe’s interest is invested in the external world of fact.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Their novels are the literary reflection of the spirit of individualism that characterised the age.
The subject is inspired by 17th century stories of castaways on desert islands.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.” It is. of his moral strength to carry on against all obstacles.” without “any appearance of fiction in it. has three children. C. struggling to impose on an alien space his middle class idea of order. a celebration of man’s power of spiritual endurance in adversity. The only survivor. to buy slaves. Under Defoe’s pen. He marries. Robinson settles in Brazil where he becomes a relatively prosperous plantation owner. not only physical but also spiritual. and the book ends with his promise of further accounts of his island. After 26 years. Providence helps him finally leave the island. where he has established a colony. one of Defoe’s “honest cheats. he turns from a reckless. in soon left a widower. Illustration to the first edition (1719) Robinson on the beach (illustration by N. In the hope of increasing his wealth. In the 28 years of solitary life.” and leaves home on board a ship. Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Robinson Crusoe is recommended as “a just history of fact. romantic youth into a realistic. he learns that his prospering business in Brazil has made him a rich man. prudent and calculating mature man. On his return to England.2. but during a terrible storm he is shipwrecked on a desert island. in fact.1920) 124 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . After several misadventures at sea. Robinson becomes engaged in a heroic struggle for survival. Robinson displays from a young age the romantic inclination of wandering. he rescues a savage from his fellow cannibals. names him Friday and turns him into his loyal servant and receptive pupil. Son of a successful German merchant settled in England. such an experience became an archetypal one. as well by the more recent case of a sailor who had lived in complete solitude for five years on an uninhabited island. Wyeth .2. the desire for adventure and for “seeing the world.” 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.” He disregards his father’s advice of continuing the family trade and keeping within the limits of his “middle station in life.
3. the motif of the island acquires symbolic Robinson’s island dimensions.2. tracing Robinson’s progress from sin (his disobedience of his father).” 5. embodying elements of contemporary social philosophy and economic theory.2.. In this light. Robinson comes to see his solitude rather as a spiritual and moral shelter.2. In his initial struggle with despair. If it should differ considerably. as his life becomes more secure and his trust in Providence increases. It may also be read as a spiritual autobiography in the Puritan tradition. to the awakening of religious conscience.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. making sure you understand the meaning of the phrase “honest cheat. as one of the great myths of individualism of Western civilisation. Gradually. at the end of the unit. and 5.1. 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. as an allegory of the ecological development of history. It corresponds to the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 125 . as a political or economic utopia. and finally to his conviction of God’s benevolent design.2. but the proper condition for the examination of consciousness. Isolation is no longer a misfortune. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the awareness of his sinfulness and the sincere desire for repentance. read again subchapters 5. Robinson perceives his exile from the world as a terrible punishment for his transgression of his father’s word.
morally autonomous. Crusoe’s years of solitude trained him for social insertion.. Enumerate. Changed in his “notion of things.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The celebration of homo faber characteristic Puritan tendency to self-scrutiny and introspection. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. as a self-reliant individual. SAQ 4 Read Text 5. Like Adam. at the end of the unit.” However. The enormous effort by which he secures shelter. if the biblical curse of work is meant to remind Adam permanently of his original disobedience.2. in the space below. Robinson is cast out from the “edenic” safety and happiness of his father’s home into an uncertain world of toil. its essential role in man’s material and spiritual progress. In this connection.” Robinson perceives the island as the equivalent of a regained Paradise. 126 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . perseverance. g. which will serve his instinct for independence. Robinson finds in it a “therapeutic” value. with a well-defined utilitarian view of life. at least four features of the hero’s character as they are illustrated by this description. Robinson Crusoe also celebrates those human features which enable man to master circumstances: pragmatism.g.” desires and “delights. or by a sentence (e. He takes pleasure in his work). 3.2. and is thus a way of restoring a lost Paradise. Defoe’s novel is thus a celebration of the dignity of work.3. It has its spiritual rewards. inventiveness. 4.2. where his daily bread is earned with “infinite labour. If you should fail to find any of the features mentioned there. the protagonist’s experience evokes the theme of the fortunate fall. food and the basic commodities of life turns into a source of satisfaction.. You may render these features either by a single noun (e. and it is also symbolic of the Puritan sense of an intense personal relationship with God. you must read again the last two paragraphs of subchapter 5. describing in minute detail Robinson’s attempt to make an earthenware pot. ingenuity). 1. subchapter 5. or the felix culpa*. perspicacity.. as well as the fragment in the Reader. 2.
The richness of concrete detail. His linear.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. of familiar detail. Robinson Crusoe is a gripping narrative. 4. read the fragment and subchapter 5.4. 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. clear language.2.2. The latter owes greatly to Defoe’s experience as a journalist. episodic plots imitate the episodic quality of life itself. at the end of the unit. the frequent enumerations and inventories. whose reality is difficult to doubt. The “journalistic” style of Defoe’s fiction is consonant with an ideal of prose style characterised by plainness. He convinced readers of the truthfulness of his narrative by evoking. Defoe’s style The world of Defoe’s novels is the world of common fact and action. 1. arising from the complication of a plot centering not on episodic adventure. he paid little attention to matters of form. In his aspiration to create an effect of reality in his narrative. clarity. but on the complexity of character and human relationship. It was with Richardson that “the sense of life” conveyed by the narrative was completed by a sense of form. lack of unnecessary ornamentation. Identify in it at least four features of Defoe’s characteristic narrative style and write them in the space provided below. 127 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . His simple. the promise of symbolic meanings. in turn benefited from his innate gift for telling stories. 3. which draws much of its force from Defoe’s peculiar narrative manner and style. with unmatched vividness. on a separate sheet. 2. which. in the Reader from the point of view of its style. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. containing.4 once more and do the exercise again. the most common objects and actions in their particularity. If your list contains none of the features mentioned there. solid world. rendered in a simple. SAQ 5 Analyse Text 5. at the same time. Defoe’s novels imposed a model of style that contributed considerably to the “democratisation” of literature. the accumulation of circumstantial detail create a strong sense of a palpable. concreteness.2. easy and eminently factual style made his writings accessible to a large audience. His fiction has the remarkable power to evoke a tangible reality.
who is now convinced of the purity of her motives and of her innocence. His focus on the inner life of feeling and emotion prefigures the Romantic* sensibility. B’s relatives and friends. The plot of Pamela. B_’s sister. Pamela has one more test to pass: winning the approval of Mr. Pamela decides to thank Providence by doing as much good as she can to those around her. Pamela differs from Clarissa in tone and ending. sensibility and morality. or Virtue Rewarded Pamela is a simple countryside girl who works as a maidservant in the house of Lady B_. Richardson’s prominent place in the history of the English novel is ensured by two novels: Pamela.6. B_. of individual freedom threatened by arbitrary power. Both novels concentrate on the microcosm of the family and develop the themes of the trial of innocence. In her new state. of the struggle between virtue and vice. Richardson focuses on the relation between feeling and virtue. Faced with her resistance. as well as for his didactic purpose. Mr. recording the details of her ordeal. hoping that she will give in. Her disarming combination of graceful modesty and pride helps her come victorious in an encounter with haughty Lady Davers. In Pamela. Mr. He acknowledges his love and proposes marriage to her. At the same time. cruel and greedy relatives. Pamela continues a diary.2.2. Back to Bedfordshire as mistress of the house. or Virtue Rewarded (1740) and Clarissa. the latter’s son. impressed by Pamela’s unusual beauty and grace. or the History of a Young Lady (1748). but also the agitation of her heart and its conflicting impulses. Her diary – intended for her parents – falls into Mr. the tone is rather that of a comedy of manners and the ending is in the spirit of the Cinderella* tale. the death of the heroine turns her into a tragic figure. which Richardson found best suited for the realistic rendering of psychological and moral complexity. unanimously loved and admired. In Clarissa.5. B_’s hands. tries to seduce her and make her his mistress. Upon the death of her mistress. Samuel Richardson (1689-1761) 5. whose affection she finally gains. the double victim of the libertine aristocrat who raped her and of her narrow-minded. Both are written in the epistolary manner*. not only in England but also on the Continent. B_ abducts her and keeps her a prisoner for a while in his Lincolnshire house. 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. As the first great sentimental novelist. His influence was considerable. in Bedfordshire. 128 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . his exploration of unconscious motivation makes him a forerunner in the great tradition of the novel of psychological analysis. Mr. There.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5.
This ambiguity in her condition makes her remarkably class-conscious.7.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. his violation of her privacy (including the private space of her correspondence) as abusive attempts to reduce her to the condition of an object. that no one has the right to control the ideas and feelings of another. B_ intercepting Pamela’s first letter to her parents (Engraving by H. the rights of the individual. but the education she received in Lady B_’s house is far above that of a servant. Pamela’s position of moral superiority reflects Richardson’s confidence that the values of the middle class entitled them to claim moral leadership. Through its subject and theme. Richardson’s novel participates in the larger illuminist debate on the issue of authority and absolute power vs. to set moral standards to the nation. She perceives her imprisonment by Mr.” 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. the freedoms that he takes with her. The cover engraving and title page of the 1741 edition Mr. Gravelot to the 1742 edition) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 129 . B_. She sees social hierarchy as “natural. as a traditionally dominant class. Richardson’s creation of Pamela is revolutionary.2. Pamela is brought up by her modest parents in the spirit of the strictest religious principles. is consistent with the spirit of individual freedom which defines the Enlightenment. as he embodies perfect virtue in a lower middle-class girl. Richardson’s implicit radical message. a complete novelty in fiction. He thus questions the exclusive right of aristocracy. The moral conflict in the novel is accompanied by social issues. F.
2. it is easier for her to stand his abuses. to obey Mr.6. 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. Her initial innocent regard for her master’s benevolence turns gradually into the apprehension of danger. social standing] I am but upon a foot with the meanest slave.”? Answer in the space left below.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 6 Considering the heroine’s dilemma in the novel. though in quality [i.7. but his moments of kindness confuse her and make her feel vulnerable. Her conscience is divided between her loyalty to the moral principles inculcated by her parents and her social duty. 5.2. read again attentively subchapters 5. B_ When the latter acts openly as her oppressor. and 5. but her letters betray her growing affection for her master.2.8. at the end of the unit. as a servant. Psychological realism and the epistolary technique What makes Richardson a real innovator is the credibility with which he renders the heroine’s inner conflicts.e. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. her contradictory impulses and unconscious motivations. 130 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . what are the implications of her exclamation: “My soul is of equal importance with the soul of a princess. If there should be significant differences. Pamela struggles from the start between fright and fascination. between hate and admiration. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
is the impact of these incidents and encounters on her mind and heart. events are recorded with the same care for detail as in Defoe’s narratives. at the end of the unit. read again subchapter 5. There is a struggle in him between the “pride of birth” and “pride of fortune”. her sentimental response to them. The exploration of the complexities of emotional response to pressing moral issues defines Richardson as a sentimental novelist.3. however. The spectacular change in him is his overcoming of class prejudice under the influence of feeling. In Pamela’s letters and diary.. He proves as unaware of his feelings as Pamela is. He found the epistolary narrative to be best suited for his sentimental focus. excerpted from Pamela. on the one hand. The use of the epistolary technique afforded direct access to the character’s thoughts and feelings. Your answers should not exceed 4 lines / 40 words each.2. on the other. B_ follows a similar evolution. SAQ 7 Starting from Richardson’s own description of his epistolary manner (Text 5. What Richardson manages to convey most convincingly is the psychological truth that feeling and emotion may sometimes run counter to our rational will. 2. find two main advantages of the epistolary technique. Compare your answers with the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If they should correspond to none of the offered suggestions. as well as the indicated fragments in the Reader. 1. and his developing love. She has a remarkable gift for rendering an incident vividly or delineating another character. and considering also Text 5..The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The character of Mr.4.9. in the Reader). which are captured in the process of their emergence. What counts. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 131 . and that human actions may have their true motivation hidden from consciousness.
“written in imitation of the manner of Cervantes*. At this point. Fielding uses the technique of reversal as a parodic device. Slipslop. Fielding was a master of parody. required a narrator who should be no longer a character.” Mr. The careful narrative architecture of his novels. but also by the maid. Through the omniscient* narrator. The hero’s companions are Parson Abraham Adams and Fanny Goodwill. Fielding considered the Puritan morality preached by Rhichardson’s Pamela as narrow and ungenerous. 1790) 132 . who opposes her brother’s marriage to a simple country-girl. Parodic accents are revived: Pamela is not Richardson’s humble. as well as their inclusiveness.3. they mirror a wide range of human types. above all. the author asserts himself. He is the object of seduction of “Lady Booby*. and. A somber discovery marks the climax of confusion: it appears that Joseph and Fanny are brother and sister. controlling the narrative and imposing his own values explicitly. Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Fielding is the creator of the novels of manners. Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and of His Friend. burlesque and comic satire. so that he sets out for home. His acknowledged literary models were Swift. priggish* upstart. but a voice external to the story. His rejection of both leads to his dismissal. Omniscient narration afforded a comic vision of life. including Pamela and her husband. Joseph’s sweetheart. 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. Mrs. Booby. More unexpected Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Lady Booby and Joseph Andrews (engraving by James Heath.3. Treating seriously of male virtue results in comic effect. Joseph Andrews is presented as Pamela’s brother. Fielding’s combination of realism and comedy inaugurated a lasting tradition of realistic fiction as an instrument of criticism of manners. but a snobbish. The result was the first comic novel of manners in England. author of Don Quixote” (1742). and the long central section of the novel – its picaresque part – describes Joseph’s adventures on the road. Lady Booby’s estate in Somersetshire is the scene for the novel’s last series of adventures. modest and gentle creature. in London. His works are panoramic reflections of the age. Henry Fielding (1707-1754) 5. Mr. Abraham Adams. Mr. All important characters meet here. Pope.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. B_’s aunt. started as a parody. emulating his sister in the exemplarity of his virtue. and the first comprehensive literary picture of the manners and mentalities of the age. which is doubled by the fact that Joseph is pursued not only by the mistress.1. to his native village. relationships and actions. irony. whose servant he was. performed by means of comic satiric devices. Fielding abandons parody. Cervantes. and he thought to propose his own version of morality. He is also the first novelist who displayed a remarkable sense of form.
in the spirit of comedy. for true or false) for each of them. For instance. to be both serious and ironic about their conventions. Cervantes. very carefully and identify which of the statements below are true and which are false. T F 8. Read Text 5. SAQ 8 In the Preface to Joseph Andrews. Wilson. The burlesque in writing and the caricatura in painting presuppose distortion and exaggeration. like the motif of love fulfilled against all obstacles. T F 6. Fielding resorts to the burlesque both in the creation of his characters and in diction. carefully. 1. Circle the appropriate letter (T or F. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 133 . Affectation arising from vanity presupposes the concealment of vice under an appearance of virtue. the spectacular reversal of Joseph’s status. The action of a comic romance is more extended and comprehensive than that of a comedy.5. T F 3. while Fanny and Pamela are revealed to be sisters. T F 4. 5. Both comedy and comic romance introduce characters of low social rank and inferior manners.3. Fielding gives his definition of a comic romance and discusses the nature and the source of the comic (“the Ridiculous”). T F 5. T F Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. read the text once more. If you should fail to identify the sentences correctly as true or false. This removes all obstacles in the way of Joseph and Fanny’s marriage.” Fielding himself speaks of his work as a comic romance.2. Fielding likes to play with genres. whom they had met during their journey. The comic writer gives pleasure by strictly imitating nature. which turns out to be gentle*. The novel as comic romance Like his invoked literary master. Mr. alluding thus to the older genre. which closes the plot. or the pattern of the adventurous journey. at the end of the unit.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. Natural imperfections are a source of the Ridiculous for the comic writer. T F 7. Fielding exploits such motifs in a comic or burlesque key. T F 2. but rooting his action in contemporaneity and the ordinary. is an ingredient of romantic plots. indeed “in imitation of the manner of Cervantes. Affectation arising from hypocrisy is more efficiently comic.
as he himself says. Virtue and vice are not the “privilege” of a certain class or profession. but manners. but they placed their main interest in the individual.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Joseph appears to follow his sister in his restriction of virtue to the question of chastity. the essence of Christian morality is not prudence. Adams’s unsuspecting nature often gets him in trouble. cruelty. 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. In the combination of foolishness and idealism that characterises the parson. Fielding resorts to the principle of contrast in characterisation. which must give substance to faith. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Character as type The principle of contrast in characterisation 134 . doctors.3. etc. In other words. but a species” (Joseph Andrews). Fielding’s panoramic approach led him to find uniform patterns in human behaviour. he describes “not men. above all. fulfilling thus the novel’s double aim of entertaining and instructing. Fielding offers aesthetic delight. Parson Adams’s character remains the moral center of the novel. in Fielding. the parson combines innocence and simplicity with dignity and learning. both honest and hypocrite priests. and the reader is invited to judge all the other characters against the moral standard that he embodies. masters. hypocrisy and intolerance he is confronted with. Every social class. At the same time. one of the most successfully accomplished quixotic* characters. The presence of Parson Adams is essential for the evolution of the main character. quickly assimilating his mentor’s lesson and convinced that true Christianity means.3. Fielding makes a synthesis between the comic and the morally serious. In order to make the extraordinary variety of human types easier to deal with. In the beginning. often making him appear ridiculous. not an individual. active goodness. and he never seems to learn from disappointing experiences. Fielding involves him in a multitude of comic situations. His fund of Christian idealism is inexhaustible. etc.4. Joseph emerges as morally mature. The character of Parson Adams The influence of Cervantes is clear in Fielding’s delineation of Parson* Adams. but also moral instruction. Like his literary ancestor. both loyal and treacherous servants or friends. as for Richardson. By means of techniques of contrast. Fielding’s fiction displays an immense gallery of characters. in various nuances of behaviour and in its moral diversity. Along the novel. He represents what Fielding considers the highest Christian value: goodness. but good deeds and charity. because “beauty and excellence” are always best demonstrated by their reverse. his virtues always outshine his occasional foolishness. For the author. Defoe and Richardson were also concerned with the relation individual-society. in spite of the many instances of greed. which often create comic effects. profession and temperament is represented in his novels.3. Parson Adams as a quixotic character 5. there are both good and bad innkeepers. lawyers.
preoccupied with the reformation of manners.3. At the same time.8.. If they should differ substantially. Fielding is the most “Augustan. read again subchapters 5.3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 135 . reveals his Augustan view of the writer’s province. through its moral and temperamental types.2.2. combining elegant seriousness with wit and irony. He is a moralist. and 5. in the superior corrective efficiency of comedy and its devices. Explain them. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 1. he had the exceptional gift of individualizing his characters through speech.4.” His exploration of the diversity of Human Nature..5. unaffected. and he tried to give full legitimacy to the novel. provide the first theory of the novel.3. defining it in relation with the respectable genres of the epic and drama. of no more than 3 lines / 30 words each.4. and he believes. like many Augustan writers. His narrative style is eminently Augustan: articulate and refined. Fielding’s Augustanism* Of all 18th century novelists. Such reflections show his Neoclassic emphasis on discipline and craftsmanship as essential for successful creation. He had a solid classical education and a strong sense of literary tradition.. at the end of the unit. 3. SAQ 9 Mention at least three features of Fielding’s art of the novel which distinguish him from Defoe and Richardson.. 2. 5. His commentaries and reflections on his own art.2. 5. drawing short comparisons. incorporated in the substance of his works.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. of evoking his characters’ social position and moral nature through their language. 5.
In spite of his promises. He digresses continually. the priest who baptised Tristram. With Sterne. This makes his novel a work of metafiction*. Tristram suffered a new misfortune: an accidental “circumcision. moulds reality into a literary pattern. Tristram. corporal Trim.4.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. However. of his uncle. that he was. which isolates each of them in his mental universe. He tells us about his birth only in Volume III. as well as of Parson Yorick. Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) 5.2. His father.4. Walter Shandy. the narrator. instead of a linear narration of a life's story and the rational coherence of an autobiographical retrospective account. that his father decided to write a “system of education” (Tristrapaedia). a sceptical examination of the conventions of realistic fiction. other interesting things to relate. 136 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . These few tragi-comic episodes from Tristram’s early life make him a “small HERO. the history of a private life. who has read “the oddest books in the universe” and consequently has “the oddest way of thinking. We learn few things about his life: that his nose was crushed at birth by the doctor’s forceps. pedantic discourses are completely incomprehensible to those around him.” He is fond of building strange theories and hypotheses about the smallest things.4. Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Tristram’s family is a collection of “originals. we are drawn into an extremely irregular. does not manage to give a shape to his story. Toby and the latter’s devoted servant. at every point. Walter. that. unpredictable narrative. i.” when a window sash fell over him owing to the maid’s carelessness. the relation between life and literature. Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel The title of the novel raises in the reader the expectation of an autobiographical narrative. that his brother Bobby died suddenly.” individuals dominated by some private obsession. His Tristram Shandy has been seen as an anti-novel. that parody was a factor of innovation in the development of the novel as a literary genre. which progressed at a slower pace than the growth of his son. of those procedures by which an author “transcribes“ life. The ultimate question that Sterne raises in his novel is the nature of fictional representation. the testing of the possibilities and limits of fiction took the novel into a radical direction.” in every sense. Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Sterne’s only novel was published in instalments: its nine volumes appeared between 1760 and 1768. is an erudite philosopher. at the age of five. 5.1.e. christened Tristram (a name which evokes the French word “triste”) instead of Trismegistus* as his father had intended. Much more of the narrative is dedicated to the unforgettable figures of his father. and his long. Fielding had demonstrated. he seems to have. in Joseph Andrews. by accident.
” forgetting (1760) everything in pursuit of his obsession. Suffering is a permanence in Tristram’s world. Its approach to the frustrations of life is called by Tristram “true Shandeism. Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The characters’ obsessions and idiosyncrasies are an intellectual barrier in their communication.4. which influences all his thoughts and actions. modesty and. which were expected to influence a man’s conduct. Understandably. Characterisation by hobby-horse is a negation of conventional means of realistic character delineation. the early accidents in his son’s life cause him great distress. Wounded in Flanders. good-humoured. character and destiny. Sterne places emphasis on the sentimental nature of his heroes as an aspect of their “moral character. during the War of the Spanish Succession*. He transforms his bowling green into a miniature military field. On the other hand. generosity. but the uniqueness of each individual mind. 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. moral or psychological) that interests Sterne. representing there the main battles as they William Hogarth.3. “My uncle Toby” is the most memorable character in the book. above all. His narrative emphasises a tragi-comic vision of life. and it is either dealt with sentimentally or revealed in its comic absurdity.” Toby Shandy is Sterne’s best accomplished sentimental character – the narrator continually praises his uncle’s good nature. as comic eccentricity. therefore. Shandean* book” that Tristram is trying to write is meant to do good to the reader’s both heart and head. The narrator sees laughter as the ultimate defense of the sensitive soul against life’s miseries and limitations. and discharged from the army. which becomes almost a parody of human individuality. were being fought on the continent. Tristram Shandy displays a unique combination of sentimentalism and comedy. uniqueness is achieved in extreme. There are many eccentric characters in 18th century fiction. a quixotic figure forming an eccentric couple with corporal Trim. It is not type (social. doomed to pass from sorrow to sorrow. absorbed in this activity.1 architecture as Don Quixote was found to have of chivalry.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Among his most eccentric theories. 5. but in Sterne’s novel all characters are eccentrics. but they can enter a dialogue of the hearts. uncle Toby continues to live the reality of war through a substitute. and this is made obvious in their endless conversations recorded in the novel. gathering “almost as many books on military frontispiece to vol. ironic terms.” defined as the capacity to mock at the blows of fate. to preserve good humour in the middle of trouble. gentleness. However. the members of the Shandy family reach mutual understanding on the affective level. to 137 The Shandean view of life Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . where compassion and empathy bridge the gap created by their singularity. with man as a vulnerable. Tristram calls such obsessions hobby-horses. They cannot share their thoughts. He becomes completely Tristram Shandy. pitiful creature. The “nonsensical. amiability.
3.6. as well as the fragment from the Reader. If the difference is considerable. 138 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .4. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. see again the fall of princes. I. in the Glossary to Unit 2. Sterne introduces the theme of Fortune – a theme which he will develop with a characteristic mixture of sentimental pathos and comic wit.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel take a lightly ironic distance from suffering. To remember the features of the tragic hero. Ch.. It is a combination of wisdom and mirth*. restricting it to 12 lines / 120 words. Read this short chapter (Text 5. read again subchapter 5. in the Reader) attentively and explain why Tristram’s selfdescription as a “small HERO” suggests a tragi-comic vision of life. at the end of the unit. Write the answer in the space left below. V. which enables man to keep a healthy spirit and to get around the evils of life by joking about them. SAQ 10 In Vol.
even a black sheet introduced at the death of Yorick. etc. there are numberless digressions and interpolated stories.4. there are several dedications scattered through the book. the restriction of the hero’s “life” to a few episodes breaks the convention of autobiographical focus. and gives the impression of stagnation. The structure of the book is equally odd. the “imperfections of words. to a certain view of writing. Sterne’s rambling narrative.” The confused chronology and the digressive excesses frustrate also our expectation of a plot.4. only in the middle of Volume III that we find the author’s Preface. its unpredictable returns to various moments in the past. Sterne defamiliarises them. in Sterne’s novel.4.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Faced with the problems of accurate representation through words. This impression is increased by Tristram’s effort to be exhaustive in his presentation. frustrates our expectation of chronological linearity commonly associated with an autobiographical account. does not seem to move towards any climax. watched as if by a slow motion camera. Tristram constantly oscillates between the comic despair at his incapacity to master his narrative and the delight he takes in complete narrative freedom. Tristram resorts to other means of communication. Tristram has the consciousness of his tragi-comic predicament.e. He thus exaggerates parodically the realistic pursuit of accuracy and immediacy. and to involve the reader both imaginatively and sentimentally. i. the book is a comic oddity. so different from Fielding’s tight. by exploiting them in a parodic way. but also to how it is told. The narrator explicitly refuses to keep the story straight. He delights in minute descriptions of postures and small gestures. Tristram is earnestly trying to tell the story of his life and his opinions as accurately as possible. but also as an author.” Not only as a man. coherent plots. which he calls “the sunshine of reading. 5. by drawing his attention not only to what is told. with its blank pages for the reader to fill in. For example. The zigzagging narrative. The difficulty he experiences as a writer is due to the limits of language. with its multitude of dashes. points of suspension. and he takes great delight in digressions. Typographically. Digressive narrative Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 139 .5. marking a moment of affectionate recollection. The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions By taking extreme freedoms with narrative and compositional conventions. makes the reader aware of them. It is. for instance. drawings and graphs. The same “Shandean” view applies to writing: Tristram counteracts the frustrations of the author who aims at perfect communication by putting on the mask of the literary jester* and mocking at the conventions of the genre. asterisks. The “Shandean” view of writing This ambivalent view of life corresponds.
at the structural level. One such theme in Tristram Shandy is that of human communication – or rather incommunication –. they may be related to themes the problem of fictional representation and its limits. It is a half-amused.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. half-comically – the distinction between subjective and objective time. the theme of time corresponds to the narrator’s concern with the distinction between the time of writing. formless reality. on the possibilities of fiction to render in an intelligible pattern the elusive. Tristram Shandy as metafiction The constant reference to the devices and conventions operating in fiction. in the first four volumes.e. on the author’s vision of life. makes Tristram Shandy a work of metafiction. the process of its own writing. Tristram draws the narrative “lines. In volume VI. Basically. making the reader aware that “literary time” is arbitrary and conventional. works which call attention to their own devices. Another prominent theme with a metafictional relevance is that The theme of time of time and its relation with the imagination. which is connected. into the “laboratory” of his literary consciousness. metafiction is fiction about fiction. Sterne’s literary treatment of the notion of duration makes him a precursor of 20th century modernist writers like James Joyce and Virginia Woolf. i.4. The main subject of Sterne’s novel is. As metafiction. with the narrator’s desperate effort to be allinclusive and his incapacity of managing his narrative. Tristram Shandy may be called the first philosophical novel in English. Metafictionally. halfsceptical meditation on the condition of literature and its relation with reality. The randomness of the narrative is a mirror of the narrator’s sense of his own life as tragi-comically governed by accident.6. also concerned with the way in which consciousness refracts external reality. Tristram Shandy questions the mimetic illusion that realistic fiction endeavours to create. There are themes in Sterne’s Metafictional novel which may be called “metafictional”. Its extravagant.” with their digressions. random course of the narrative has a correspondent in the theme of Fortune. the permanent inquiry into what a novel can do and cannot do. as it explores – halfseriously. Sterne’s particular approach to narrative correponds to a certain vision of human experience. however. 140 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The meaning of metafiction depends. experimental character affords the reader a glimpse into the novelist’s dilemmas and arsenal of choices. ultimately. of life as pure chance. The unpredictable. Tristram constantly draws attention to the way in which he manipulates fictional time. the narrated time and the time of reading.e. i.
2. at the end of the unit. If they differ significantly. and read the fragment attentively once more. 3.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 11 Text 5. Read the text and find three reasons for Tristram’s praise of digressions. in the Reader illustrates the metafictional dimension of Sterne’s novel. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the narrator stops and considers his eccentric way of telling it. the author reveals to the reader one aspect of his conception of writing. 1. Instead of continuing the story. The fragment is practically about the writing of the novel.. using no more than 3 lines / 30 words for each of them. Henry William Bunbury: Uncle Toby and Trim reviving a scene of war on the bowling green (1773) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 141 . and 5. In this way. which he discusses in the very text of the work. go again through subchapters 18.104.22.168. Write them in the spaces indicated below.4.4.
Fielding. However. selected as an illustration of the most characteristic features of his art. 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. tests the possibilities and limitations of the newly-born literary genre in an experimental. in a work so committed to the matterof-fact. and Laurence Sterne.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. this genre has enjoyed unrivalled popularity. which has dealt with four major novelists of this age: Daniel Defoe. At the beginning of the 18th century. We have only concentrated on one novel for each writer. Samuel Richardson. readers along the ages have been able to find a wealth of symbolic meanings and a story of archetypal significance. Henry Fielding. Sterne. and with Robinson Crusoe the middle class hero is imposed on the literary scene. on the other hand. to the palpable reality of common objects and actions. Richardson takes the novel in the direction of the minute analysis of emotion and feeling. completely ignored by Augustan poetics. in his novels of manners. but his interest in the psychological complexity of the individual is completed by a remarkable sensitivity to social aspects. Since its settlement on the literary scene. Lastly. Their works illustrate various aspects and tendencies in the evolution of the genre. who shares with Fielding the attraction to comedy and parody. The absence of norms and models made it an exceptionally flexible and inclusive form. This is reflected in the wide diversity of directions in which the novel developed in the 18th century. 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 . You have formed an idea of this diversity from the chapters of this unit. Defoe illustrates best the new narrative realism that emerged in fiction.
Cinderella: an old fairy story. in which the poor heroine.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. whose style. in which its form becomes explicitly its subject. harpsichord: an old musical instrument. ends up by marrying Prince Charming. literally: novel of formation. He is forced to 143 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . fun. attitude and subject are deliberately distorted so as to make them appear ridiculous. literacy: the ability to read and write. consisting of a stick with a figure of a horse’s head at one end. epistolary manner: in a novel.e. a Fool. a term designating the contemporary mode of fiction – postmodern fiction – which is essentially self-reflexive. The letter (epistle) as a literary species was widely used in the 18th century. which became popular in England through translation and imitation. booby: silly or stupid person. omniscient: describes the perspective of a narrator who appears to know all about the characters and their action. see again the Glossary in Unit 1). It was Aristotle who articulated this theory. or education. metafiction: literally. who achieves success owing to beauty and virtue. hobby horse: a favourite topic or an obsessive. characteristically. The hero – the picaro (i. “beyond fiction”. tone. mimetic: the adjective derived from mimesis (Greek: imitation). rogue) – belongs. happiness. gentle: of good breeding. or “narcissistic” – i. a hobbyhorse is a toy. the way of telling the story through a character’s letters or through an exchange of letters. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. mirth: laughter.e. parody: the satirical imitation of a serious work. but producing a different sound. fixed idea. parson: an Anglican priest in charge of a local church. and he seeks social integration. felix culpa: see subchapter 3. Cinderella is the prototype of the obscure and neglected young person. exact representation of life.3 and the Glossary in Unit 3. persecuted by her stepmother and ugly stepsisters. to the lower ranks of society. lifelikeness: closeness to life. Bildungsroman: German term. belonging to a high social class (as in gentleman). Concretely. played like a piano. picaresque: the origin of English picaresque novels is in the Spanish picaresque fiction of the 16th century. a term associated with the aesthetic view according to which the work of art is an imitation – a representation – of reality. jester: a professional clown employed by a king or nobleman. gaiety. minuteness: exactness in the rendering of small detail. which dominated Western aesthetics until the end of the 18th century.
1615). the famous satirical romance in which the hero’s sense of reality is altered by his obsession with the romantic chivalric ideal. Spain and Bavaria in this war fought over the disputed succession to the Spanish throne. Britain joined Austria. The high aspirations of this generous. on a quest that is both admirable and ridiculous. Don Quixote starts. War of the Spanish Succession: 1702-1713. • 144 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Prussia and the Netherlands against France. Puritan: see the Glossary in Unit 1. like a knight-errant of former times.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel • • • • • • find his way in a hostile world by means of his resourcefulness and ingenuity. author of Don Quixote de la Mancha (1605. squire) appear as madness in a world whose reality is obscured to him by the idealism of the old romances. Gallery of personalities • Cervantes (Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra): Spanish writer (1547-1616). honest and brave hidalgo (i. priggish: describes a person who is strict about rules and correct behaviour and thinks him/herself morally superior to others. Romantic: see Romanticism in the Glossary in Unit 1. 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. which stands in an ironic contrast with the successive triumphs of the noble hero of romance). having often to go through the experience of humiliation and frustration. Don Quixote is an implicit debate on the relation between fiction and reality. “quixotic” indicates an unrealistically optimistic and impractically idealistic approach to life. Stimulated by the numberless stories of romantic heroism that he has read. quixotic: the word describes a character moulded after Cervantes’s Don Quixote. Shandean: the adjective that Tristram derives from his family name.
The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 20%.1. The novel as a literary genre both reflects and helps consolidate values and attitudes which define the Age of the Enlightenment. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). You will have. Read the fragment carefully and analyse: • the ironic-satirical treatment of Gulliver himself. 2 will count as 20% in your final assessment. as illustrated by this fragment.4. with special attention to subchapter 4. What is the double symbolic significance of Robinson’s island. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. Horrified. in grading your paper. 1. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 145 .. 2. You might find it helpful to revise subchapters 5. Text 4. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. and 5.. 2 This assignment includes tasks concerning both Unit 4 and Unit 5. in the Reader presents an incident at the court of Brobdingnag. and its contrast with European civilisation as Gulliver presents it. Remember that.4.2. in the context of the novel’s pattern of Puritan autobiography? Your answer should be no longer than 10 lines /100 words. • the features that make the kingdom of Brobdingnag a utopia of reasonable government. revealing candidly to him the “benefits” of this invention. You may refer both to the general circumstances of the novel’s emergence and its concerns. In order to win the good graces of the king. 3.1. Mention at least four aspects in support of this idea. in Book II of Gulliver’s Travels. Text 5. and to the illustration of those values and attitudes in a particular novel. Limit your answer to 35 lines/350 words.1. therefore. to revise the preceding unit. the king rejects this tribute. Gulliver offers him the secret of the recipe for gunpowder. clarity. and Gulliver’s new humiliation will make him partial in the subsequent description of the king’s rule. who had just pronounced a severe judgement on his civilisation. which presents Swift as a master of allegorical satire. in the Reader represents a fragment from Robinson Crusoe in which the motif of the island is particularly prominent. • the coherence. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 30%. SAA no. as well as the presentation of the novel you choose to discuss. Limit your answer to 25 lines / 250 words.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Send-away assignment no.
4. realistic account. resilience. 2. 5. and by the form of autobiographical record. concreteness. inventiveness. SAQ 3 Defoe’s own phrase refers to the purpose of his novels: to entertain and to instruct. sharp sense of observation. vividness. In the social order. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … offering the middle class readers models of moral and ethical conduct and of social success. Women were … a consistent part of the novel’s reading public. patience. She will accept humbly her social inferiority. but this is a way of accomplishing more efficiently his honest intention of conveying a moral message. SAQ 4 Tenacity. 2. the capacity for learning from mistakes. He delights the reader with an extraordinary adventure and a story of success. rationality. SAQ 5 factuality. industriousness. He thus “cheats” the reader with the illusion of truth. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. 5. The rise of the middle classes … coincides with the emergence of the novel as a literary genre. 3. she may be deprived of the privilege of class and fortune. optimism.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. 3. 6. and also authors of novels. 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. 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. 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 . SAQ 2 1. on contemporary social reality and on the experience of the common individual. immediacy. but she lives with the deep conviction that in the spiritual order of a Christian world. 4. … novels focused on the ordinary and the familiar aspects of life. plainness. pragmatism. which is given an air of authenticity by the meticulous. all souls are equal.
it enables the author to give greater psychological complexity to the characters.T. 3. His style: while the style of Defoe and Richardson is closer to the plainness of common speech. 3. 4. 3F. The use of digressions is meant to show Tristram’s narrative skill and constitutes a mark of his originality. He is a “small HERO” because the misfortunes of his life do not consist in some “great or signal evil. his gifts and virtues set him above common people.T.T. 8. 7. 2. Digressions keep the reader’s curiosity awake. 5. Her statement reflects the strength of her sense of individual worth.T.F.F SAQ 9 1. as well as a paradoxical combination of social conformity and rebelliousness. enjoying title. The conception of character: he is interested not in the uniqueness of individuals. It allows a more profound insight into the character’s mind. SAQ 11 1. forbidding the reading “appetite” to fail and bringing in variety. This is not Tristram’s case. since the letters usually record moments of crisis in the character’s experience. The narrative manner: unlike Defoe and Richardson. It prevents the writing from ending – it allows the writer to go on indefinitely. SAQ 10 In formulating your answer. 2. Fielding finds the omniscient point of view more suitable to his intentions. living and the act of writing overlap each other.e unfavourable] accidents” is in comic contrast with the ideas of tragic disaster and the fall of the great. but in the way in which the individual embodies general traits of human nature. you should think first of the features of a tragic hero. that is. 2. It creates a greater sense of suspense and anticipation.” but in “pitiful misadventures. and this impression of unmediaded communication strengthens his belief in the character’s sincerity. This technique may thus give a dramatic quality to the narrative. SAQ 7 1. they create a sort of suspense. 3. which makes her sensitive to any form of power abuse. he is concerned with human types. wealth and power. Fielding displays the elegance and refinement of the Augustan ideal of style. 2. who write in the first person. In this way.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel will. The reader is made witness to the most private thoughts of the character. He is always a prominent figure.T.” The image of the “ungracious Duchess” – Fortune – pelting him with a series of “cross [i. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 147 . 6. SAQ 8 1.
53-59. 2003 (pp. 43-46. 217-231. A Critical History of English Literature. vol.3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). 143-163. 1969 (pp. David. 731-736) 3. 76-80) 2. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Allen. 712-718. The English Novel. Cornelia.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Further reading 1. 179-195. 37-42. 116127. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 701-704. Macsiniuc. 1991 (pp. Daiches. Penguin Books Limited. 234-238) 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 598-602. The English Eighteenth Century: The Novel in Its Beginnings. Walter.
4.4.1. 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. 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.22.214.171.124. the Romantic visionary The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Knowledge in the world of Experience The double vision in Blake’s Songs Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.4.1. 6. 6. 126.96.36.199.3.3. 188.8.131.52. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.4.English pre-Romantic poetry UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY Unit Outline 6 6. 6. 6. 6.1. 6. 6. 184.108.40.206. 6.2. 6.3.1. 6. 220.127.116.11.4. 6. The Seasons William Cowper.7. 6.1.4. 18.104.22.168.
1. The concern with personal. with its emphasis on order. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling 150 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the century of the Enlightenment*. This new poetic trend ran counter to the optimistic confidence of the Age of Reason. Literature was called to deal with matters of public interest. One trend in the 18th century poetry of meditation was the preference for the expression of melancholy and dark thoughts.g.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). The sentimental novel* (e. which became the vehicle for the expression of private feeling and assumed a personal voice. the century of the Enlightenment was not without paradoxes and contradictions. The optimism and pragmatism of a rational age which believed in progress were reflected in literature as well. however. For instance. led to an increasing attention to emotional response. and cultivated its public relevance. harmony. Pope. to bring the significant aspects of human life and behaviour into the light of public attention. the cult of Reason favoured an attitude of humanitarianism and social benevolence. Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The eighteenth century. as is proved by the works of the great Augustan writers (Steele. and the sensibility that it cultivated favoured the rise of the Gothic novel. as well as the preoccupation of 18th century analytic thought with the workings of the human mind. Swift. Addison. discipline. Neoclassicism*. Like any modern age. Samuel Richardson) is one manifestation of this tendency. but also in a new kind of meditative poetry. regarded art as the product of civilisation. elegance and decorum*. was eminently the Age of Reason. whose literary-artistic expression was the Neoclassical doctrine. The interest in individual psychology. which in turn favoured the emergence of the cult of Feeling. subjective experience is displayed not only in fiction. and for night as a setting.
by Thomas Gray (1716-1771).” and to have collected them in the Ossian Highlands of Scotland*. known as the Graveyard School of poetry. which awakened a steady interest in older poetic styles. and it exerted an immense influence both in England and on the Continent. and the dominant tone is that of nostalgia and regret. imitating partly the cadence of biblical verses and of Milton’s blank verse. The most spectacular manifestation of this interest is the volume Poems of Ossian. legendary Irish bard and hero Ossian. The lamentations of the blind bard evoke an ancient world of heroic virtue. 1782) What Macpherson presented as a great primitive Celtic epic turned out to be entirely his own imaginary creation. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. whose basic motifs were the shortness and sorrows of life and the inexorable passage of time. It begins with the contemplation of the landscape. Celtic* and Norse* legend and mythology. His long poem in nine books. whose life had passed in complete anonymity.2. Macpherson claimed to have translated these poems from “the Gaelic or Erse* language. The poetry of melancholy meditation Edward Young is one of the most important representatives of this new kind of reflective poetry. Thomas Percy published a collection of mediaeval ballads.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 151 . and folk literature in general. and misty. This new interest was reflected in the curiosity about “primitive* poetry” – biblical poetry. wild. Macpherson’s “Ossianic poems” are pieces of highly rhetorical poetic prose. supposed to have lived in the 3rd century A. death and immortality.1. The perfect form of Gray’s poem shows his classical training. In 1765. Night Thoughts (1742-1745). published in 1765 by James Macpherson (17361796). Edward Young (1683-1765) 6. 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. but its subject and mood are preRomantic. which contrasts with the Augustan focus on contemporary civilisation. Young and other poets formed a distinct trend in the mideighteenth century. with tombstones lit by the pale moon – contributed to the birth of the taste for Gothic.1.D. is the most outstanding expression of this new spirit in poetry. It consisted in long blank verse* meditations on such things as earthly vanity. sublime landscapes. Its gloomy setting – the churchyard. He also claimed that their author was the (painted by Nicolai Abildgaard. The fascination with the Middle Ages is another feature which illustrated the rise of the Romantic sensibility. It is in this tradition that one of the most popular poems in English must be placed: Elegy written in a Country Churchyard. but its influence on the birth of Romanticism* in England and on the Continent was huge. The interest in early poetry Another tendency which announced a change in literary sensibility was a new sense of the past.1.
… the pre-Romantic interest in the Middle Ages and popular poetry. c. who claimed to have translated an ancient Celtic epic poem by the legendary Ossian. The publication. reflected… 4. with its taste for the macabre and the supernatural. 1. … as well as Gothic fiction. young Thomas Chatterton (1752-1770). The completed sentences will describe aspects of the emergence of a pre-Romantic current in 18th century poetry.English pre-Romantic poetry In 1770. SAQ 1 Read the partial statements below and match them. The coming generation of Romantic poets turned by Henry Wallis him into a legend. 152 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . d. the victim of an (1856) insensitive and hostile world. of Thomas Percy’s collection of ballads. is a pre-Romantic reaction against Neoclassic literary decorum. imagination. regarding him as a martyr.” presenting his own poems as authentic mediaeval verse. … a. When his literary fraud was exposed. … for the pre-Romantic poetry of melancholy meditation. in 1765. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. These poems displayed lyric grace and the promise of talent. If you have failed to make the right match for every sentence. b. The churchyard was a favourite setting … 2. published a volume of poems presented as belonging to the mediaeval poet-monk Thomas Rowley. … 3. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. Like James Macpherson. Write the correct sequel in the space provided for each sentence. at the end of the unit. The melancholy poetry of the Graveyard School. … Chatterton is also the author of a literary “fraud. aspiring to poetic fame. with its gloomy atmosphere. read again the previous subchapters. but they proved to be (like the Ossianic poems) entirely the product of Chatterton’s inflamed Death of Chatterton. Chatterton committed suicide.
1. Under the influence of Jean Jacques Rousseau*. the new feeling for nature – these were features indicating that literary taste was changing. Elements of a pre-Romantic sensibility can be found all along the century. A return to blank verse – for which Shakespeare and Milton were the great models – allowed greater flexibility of expression. Samuel Taylor Coleridge). The emphasis on sentimental response. Henry Fielding) would often associate the turbulent. valued for their simplicity and directness by the first Romantics (William Wordsworth. but also literary forms. Towards the end of the century. and the simplicity of country life with moral virtue. The return to blank verse 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 153 . and indeed the tendency along the century was to abandon it for poetic forms that allowed more freedom. towards the highest achievement of man’s Reason: civilisation itself. and the emergence of a distinct poetic attitude towards nature. The pre. the interest in rural life and its contrast with civilisation.3. In the following subchapters. In the latter part of the century. 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. The rural universe in 18th century poetry The emerging Age of Sensibility oriented the critical spirit. and the 18 th century abounded in optimistic utopias about an idyllic. sometimes within the context of Augustan conventions.Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The transition from the Augustan to the Romantic age was slow and long. such as the song and the ballad. William Blake would call the heroic couplet* the “great cage” of Augustan poetry. patriarchal society in which men could enjoy fully their natural right to freedom. the inspiration from folk myths and legends. There was a growing suspicion that civilisation may have a corrupting effect on man’s innate goodness.g. the interest in the local and national past. The great novelists (e.2. an interest developed in popular forms of poetry. busy life of the city with moral confusion.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. This change in taste concerned not only themes and subjects. characteristic of the Enlightenment. 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.
English pre-Romantic poetry
6.2.1. The sentimental approach: Oliver Goldsmith
An idyllic view of the countryside is present in the poem The Deserted Village (1770), by Oliver Goldsmith (1728-1774). Goldsmith’s literary preferences were Neoclassic, but his remarkable achievement is to have combined a sentimental theme with the elegant, balanced form of the Augustan couplet. The poem is Goldsmith’s reaction to a social and economic reality: the enclosure* of land, a capitalist process which changed radically the life of the traditional village. Goldsmith sets in contrast the former happiness of Auburn (an idealised version of his native village, in Ireland) with the desolation of the present, when the land is concentrated in the hand of “one only The Deserted Village master.” He remembers the days gone by, with their “humble illustration by happiness” spent in the middle of a hard-working but cheerful and W. Lee Hankey warm-hearted community. Their life was measured then by the cycles (1900 edition) of agricultural labour, alternating with the simple “sports” (i.e. amusements) and pleasures of the moments of well-deserved leisure. Goldsmith gives an idyllic picture of a rural paradise, in which man lives in harmony with nature and enjoys “health and plenty,” “innocence and ease,” and in which toil becomes a pleasure. This sentimental image of the “loveliest village of the plain” is only a memory, and the poet constantly moves between the happy past and the sorrowful present. His evocation of the past charms of “sweet Auburn” has an elegiac tone, and he laments the disintegration of the traditional, stable rural civilisation. Goldsmith blames the decay of the former way of country life on the increasing greed of man, on the excessive concern with accumulation of wealth, and on the vice of “luxury.” His village was an idyllic microcosm, a small but organic universe sustained by temperance and virtue, but incapable to resist the pressure of the new economic tendencies.
6.2.2. Character sketch in The Deserted Village
The Deserted Village illustrates not only Goldsmith’s sharp sense of observation in the description of natural beauty and of the human scene, but also his art of character sketch. His remembrance of the old days in Auburn focuses now and then on some member of the community, whom he evokes in short, precise and vivid features. Among his notable miniature portraits is that of the village schoolmaster, whose small eccentricities are captured with affectionate humour. A memorable sentimental description is that of the village preacher. Goldsmith emphasises the decency, moderation and humility of his simple life, “remote from towns,” his complete lack of ambition and vanity, and his strong attachment to the place and community which he serves. Firm in his moral guidance and a severe judge of human “wanderings,” Goldsmith’s parson is, however, a truly charitable soul, “to all the country dear.”
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English pre-Romantic poetry
SAQ 2 The portrait of the preacher in The Deserted Village completes the idyllic picture of Auburn in the old days. Below, there are several features of this character. Read Text 6.1., containing a fragment from Goldsmith’s poem, and identify those lines which illustrate or suggest these features. Write these lines down in the provided spaces, after each mentioned feature. 1. moderation (1 line): 2. strong attachment to the humble community that he served (2 lines):
3. complete lack of worldly ambition or vanity ( 2 lines):
4. selflessness and sincere concern for the fate and spirit of those in pitiful circumstances (1 line): 5. hospitality to the poor (2 lines):
6. severity in his judgement of human error, but unconditional charity (1 line):
Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs, at the end of the unit. If they should differ significantly, read the fragment from Goldsmith again.
6.2.3. The realistic approach: George Crabbe
Goldsmith’s idealisation of rural life received a sharply realistic reply from a poet who also continues the Augustan tradition: George Crabbe (1754-1832). His poem in rhymed couplets The Village (1783) is an attack on those poetic conventions which created the illusion of the innocence and happiness of country life. Crabbe’s medical practice afforded him a first hand observation of the rural world, and the sentimental cult of its idyllic charm had little to do with the realities that he encountered. His poem aims to paint village life “as Truth will paint it and as bards will not”. Instead of the cheerful ease, the innocent pleasures and the rewarding toil described in Goldsmith’s Deserted Village,
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
English pre-Romantic poetry
Illustration to (1905 edition)
Crabbe presents a sordid reality. For him, the sad truth of village life is the people’s hopeless poverty, their many vices, their struggle with an unfriendly nature for the daily bread. Despised and neglected by the rich, they lead a bitter existence, whose miseries never end. Crabbe denounces the unreality and artificiality of pastoral poetry, whose Muse knows nothing of the real pains and cares of the peasants. The moralist in him could not accept to disguise their deplorable fortune “in tinsel trappings [i.e. glittering ornaments] of poetic pride.” The classical image of the happy shepherd playing his pipe in the fields is out of place in the contemporary world, only a “mechanic echo” of other literary times. To prolong this convention, painting everything in “fair colours,” means to deviate from “Truth and Nature.” Crabbe pleads for a change in the poets’ attitude towards the subject of country life, in the belief that its realistic reflection will at least awaken curiosity and sympathy in the reader. The superficial praise of an idealised, conventional world serves only the poet’s vanity. The peasant, “overcome by labour” and consumed with many cares, would not get any comfort from such praise. Crabbe’s poem is completely unromantic, removing the veil of poetic illusion from a subject that was already a conventional one. However, his realism and critical spirit did not exclude genuine compassion. His sympathetic interest in the life of humble people anticipates the radical attitude of the first great English Romantic poet, William Wordsworth.
6.2.4. Robert Burns and the popular tradition
At about the same time, the Scottish peasant-poet Robert Burns (1759-1796) was opening a path towards the Romantic revolution in poetry. Written in his native tongue, the collected poems he published in 1786 were the authentic expression of a passionate nature, whose experiences were fundamentally linked to the universe of rural life. These poems are greatly indebted to the popular tradition of poetic forms (songs, ballads, etc.) and they display either delicate sentimental lyricism or vigorous realism, spirit and humour. Their intensely personal tone and their vividness and warmth in the description of the natural scene contrasted sharply with the formal rigidity and didacticism of much late 18th century poetry. Burns’s success as a poet confirmed the early Romantic belief in the close connection between nature, spontaneity of feeling, and poetic imagination. It was Burns who provided the lyrics for the song Auld Lang Syne, whose title means “old times” or “times past”. They were partly Burns’s composition, partly his transcription, as he said, “from an old man’s singing.”
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
English pre-Romantic poetry
SAQ 3 Text 6.2. in the Reader contains a fragment from The Village, in which Crabbe invites those who idealise the countryside in “smooth” verse to take a closer look at its realities. Read the fragment and point out that the image he offers is an antithesis to the idyllic picture of “rural ease.” How does Crabbe’s description contradict the nostalgic image in Goldsmith’s poem? You might find it helpful to read again subchapter 6.2.1. for a better perception of the contrast. Answer in the space below, in no more than 15 lines / 150 words.
Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs, at the end of the unit. If they should differ significantly, read the fragment from Crabbe again, making sure you have understood it correctly. Read again the paragraphs referring to Goldsmith in the preceding subchapter, as well.
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an expression of national pride. The Seasons In the Preface to the fourth part of The Seasons. but also the feeling for it. political comments. and that he never yet has felt what Thomson impresses. The conventional Augustan “local” poem (or “topographical” poem*) looked at nature from the perspective of historical or classical mythological associations. In spite of its eclectic nature.3. Samuel Johnson said.” Thomson confesses that he knows “of no other subject more elevating. in which the descriptive detail was often used in order to create a certain mood. with a remarkable attention to detail and precision of notation. more amusing. It appealed both to the Augustans and to the Romantics. in its magnificence and diversity. than the works of Nature. the splendour of summer.” The Seasons marked an important moment in 18th century poetry. “Winter.” 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. praise of friends. James Thomson. more ready to awake the poetical enthusiasm. 6.1. With James Thomson (1700-1748) and his long poem The Seasons (1726-1730). The Augustans were interested in nature only to the extent that it helped them emphasise the conquests of civilization. becomes an object of interest in itself. nature. It contains reflections on the natural and social condition of man and on Nature as the manifestation of the divine ordering mind. the philosophical reflection. Thomson evokes the glory and joy of reviving nature in spring. and the apparent cruelty of winter. Thomson practically inaugurated the trend of descriptive-meditative poetry.3. patriotic enthusiasm. His praise of nature and of the countryside. Pre-Romantic nature poetry One of the most significant shifts in poetic sensibility was the new attitude to nature.” inspired many other poets along the 18th century. the peace of autumn – bringer of “Philosophic Melancholy” –.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. poetic renderings of current notions of natural history. manifest as early as the 1730s. Britannia. The Seasons has a unity ensured by the recurrent themes and motifs related to the observable natural universe. His poem educated. etc. Each of the four parts of the poem describes seasonal aspects of nature and rural life. As Dr. and the moral sentiment. Thomson is also famous for the patriotic lyrics that he wrote for the song Rule. in many generations of readers. “The reader of The Seasons wonders that he never saw before what Thomson shows him. exerting a considerable influence on both of them. not only the perception of nature. as well as his glorification of “retirement in solitude” as the best state in which to “sing the works of nature. James Thomson (1700-1748) 158 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .
2. more carefully. If there should be major differences. He preferred the classical form of the ode*. social satire. but his blank verse poem has a much more personal tone. and his feeling for Nature is that of a pre-Romantic. How does the Philosophic Melancholy influence the poet? Answer below. The Task has actually been described as a spiritual autobiography. in popular superstitions and the supernatural. living in retirement from the city. whose work brings into harmony the various tendencies in 18th century poetry. which the poet calls “Philosophic Melancholy” (remember Milton’s Il Penseroso*.. William Cowper.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 4 Read Text 6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 159 . with its short. but his subjects anticipate the Romantic sensibility.3. in which a sensitive and thoughtful Christian. in which he captures with precision and delicacy the crepuscular atmosphere. which actually inspired Thomson). at the end of the unit. Like Thomson and Collins. read text C again. from the third part.” Autumnal nature favours a contemplative-meditative mood. He reaches perfection in his famous Ode to Evening (1746). religious meditations and character sketches accompany Cowper’s celebration of rural domestic happiness and communion with nature. Cowper displays an Augustan concern for elegance and refinement in expression. in a paragraph of no more than 6 lines / 60 words. and he displayed the Augustan taste for stylistic refinement.3. One of Thomson’s great admirers was William Collins (17211759). the poem The Task (1785) by William Cowper (1731-1800) reflects a similar attraction to the theme of nature. “Autumn. He was interested in the mediaeval past. unrhymed stanzas. William Collins 6. which represents a fragment from Thomson’s The Seasons – more exactly. records his observations and reflections. The Task Much closer in time to the beginning of the Romantic Age. Passages of moral and political commentary. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
like gardening. extracted from Cowper’s The Task. in which he can find shelter against depression and anxiety. but the joy of communion with friends. in the Reader. he becomes aware of the instability of this last retreat from the confusions and corruption of modern urban civilisation. fearing that “The town has tinged [i. indicate an affectionate observer. As a poet of nature. domestic activities. however. Wordsworth. Coleridge). 1856 The Task. Read again the fragment if you answer is significantly different. Cowper displays a remarkable eye for detail and a landscape-painter’s sense of perspective. Your answer should not exceed 10 lines / 100 words. 160 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . represents one of the most memorable statements. the peace and quiet of village life.e. Rural “domestic happiness” seems to him “the only bliss. The contemplation of nature has a healing effect on Cowper. / Paradise that has survived the fall. and his expressions of gratitude for the spiritual comfort and superior joys that it offers anticipated the first generation of English Romantics (W. concerning the opposition country/town. His meticulous descriptions of countryside scenery and animal life. affected] the country.4. Cowper’s love of nature is closely linked to his love of the countryside. SAQ 5 Text 6. of the seasonal diversity of natural aspects.” Sometimes.English pre-Romantic poetry illustration by Birket Foster. and of simple. S. T. Retirement to the countryside does not mean for him idle solitude – it is not isolation that he seeks in rural nature. at the end of the unit. with its vices and follies. Read this fragment and explain why Cowper finds the countryside superior to the urban world. in the 18th century. which he opposes to the civilisation of the city. He praises the simple pleasures. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
Like other pre-Romantic poets. and his creative personality manifested itself in combined and complementary modes of expression. and this laborious process restricted the number of copies that Blake could produce.1. whose attitudes and concerns define him sharply as an anti-Augustan. Blake did not publish his poems in conventional printed form. Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake is often regarded as a pre-Romantic poet. Gray. all Blake’s major poems were composed in this way.civilisation. in the tone and rhythms of Biblical psalms and religious hymns. and displays the same humanitarian spirit as his contemporaries. Milton. picture and decoration reminds of the painful. the rural setting. but also a gifted painter and engraver. These beliefs – in Nature as a moral teacher and as a guide for imagination – were central to the creed of the first Romantics. William Blake (1757-1827) 6. to a large extent. widening the range of meanings. He was an admirer of Shakespeare. and being regarded as an eccentric artist. 6. The charms of nature have also an almost magic influence on human creativity and depth of thought.4. Nature “nurses” the sympathy for our fellow beings. and he rejected the classical standards of style. rendered in its pastoral simplicity. minute work of mediaeval miniaturists and their illuminated* manuscripts. In his first great illuminated work. Each copy was then coloured by hand. He was a relatively marginal figure during his lifetime. to the special way in which he produced his work. finding literary inspiration in the simplicity and directness of popular poetry. and Macpherson. He was not only a poet. he turns his attention to the rural world. exerting influence only on a small circle of friends and admirers.English pre-Romantic poetry Both Thomson and Cowper see a strong connection between love of nature and a humanitarian spirit. represents symbolically the uncorrupt order of nature. “unfit for human fellowship” and “dead” to “love and friendship both” (Cowper). Apart from a volume of early verse. Thomson. these various dimensions of his works shed light on each other. our sense of a common fate for all humanity. Songs of Innocence and of Experience (1794). which was accompanied by drawings and decorations. William Blake. The theme of childhood in this work enables Blake to explore the opposition nature . In Blake. It was in the latter half of the 19th century that he was rediscovered by a group of poets and painters. and recognised as one of the most original creators. the visionary artist William Blake holds a unique place in the history of English literature. He associates nature with the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 161 . Blake’s late fame is due. He used a special method for engraving and printing the handwritten text.4. A heart that is insensitive to nature is a hard heart. The combination of calligraphic text.
Los*. a prophet. His rebellion against the “systems” which limit the energies of the Imagination takes a literary form in his Prophetic Books*. is one of the most powerful assertions of Romantic creativity. / I will not reason and compare: my business is to create. the Romantic visionary Blake is also frequently assimilated to the first generation of Romantic poets. in a way. and his whole work. 6. unpremeditated act. They are.4. original and strange.” He is a true Romantic in his belief that poetic creation is a spontaneous. Blake was a rebel. Like the other English Romantics.” Blake worshipped Imagination as the only true way to spiritual freedom. and whom he saw as the embodiment of the revolutionary impulse. and he opposed to them the “Daughters of Inspiration. or be enslaved by another man’s. He distrusted all systems of thought and institutions that restrained man’s freedom and imagination. He insisted on the visionary and inspired quality of his writings – he asserted. Blake. and he denounces the evils of civilisation. 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. in which Blake creates a mythology of his own. a tribute to Milton. Jerusalem: “I must create a system.English pre-Romantic poetry innocence of man in his condition before the Fall – the “childhood” of humanity –. which oppresses man in the name of Reason and Progress. One of Blake’s mythological creatures in these poems. by William Blake 162 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . says. Plate from the poem Jerusalem (1805-1820).2. whom Blake (like the other Romantics) venerated.” asserting that ”Imagination has nothing to do with Memory.” This is Blake’s own creed. for instance: “I copy Imagination. in Blake’s last poem. The classical Muses were for him the “Daughters of Memory”*.” or “I write when commanded by spirits.
revise the whole subchapter. these are “happy songs / Every child may joy [i. 1. their clarity of expression and their musicality. innocent delights. What chiefly impressed Blake in Milton’s Paradise Lost was its astonishing display of classical-humanistic erudition. The Shepherd.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 Read the following sentences and identify the four true statements which describe features of Blake’s work. The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence In 1789 – the year of the French Revolution –. that is. The main influence in Blake’s work were the ancient Greek and Latin poets admired by the Augustans. If you have made mistaken choices. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.4. or Cradle Song offer a glimpse into a world filled with simple. T F 3. Songs of Innocence marked a new departure in English poetry. of the world seen through the eyes of the child. T F 6. T F 2.e. with its repertoire of rhetorical conventions. The subchapter that follows will acquaint you with some of the poems illustrating Blake’s “double vision” in Songs of Innocence and of Experience. echoing with laughter and sustained by love and by the belief in the goodness of nature. and its origin was visionary experience. 163 Songs of Innocence (1789) Title page of Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The extreme formal simplicity and the apparent lack of sophistication of these short poems anticipated the Romantic rejection of poetic diction*. at the end of the unit. It was the year of a revolution in poetry as well. As the poet emphasises in the Introduction. Blake’s works combine the handwritten text with picture and decoration – a technique that reminds of mediaeval manuscripts.3. In Songs of Innocence and of Experience. the association of childhood with edenic nature is opposed to civilisation as the fallen condition of man.” They build a charming picture of the universe of childhood. As a poet. The Blossom. Poems like Infant Joy. T F 4. enjoy] to hear. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). and the three statements that are false. poetic creation was the spontaneous fruit of inspiration. Laughing Song. Blake enjoyed a great popularity during his lifetime. which echoed the rhythms of popular verse. The Echoing Green. 6. by their remarkable lyrical delicacy. which are the expression of his Romantic rebellion against all forms of constraint. Blake is a creator of myths in his Prophetic Books. T F 5. Blake composed his first significant work: Songs of Innocence. For Blake. Spring. T F 7.
“Old John. childhood represents the unfallen state of man. and every child is a manifestation of the Divine Imagination in the world.e. Blake identifies Jesus with the Imagination.” 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. the guardian angel. with white hair. Besides the children themselves. or even Jesus. The pastoral figure of the shepherd receives in Blake a Christian connotation. The pastoral setting symbolises the closeness of man to a benevolent nature and the bliss enjoyed by man in Paradise. The good shepherd.” Throughout his work. 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. In The Echoing Green. Blake filtered these ideas through his own intense idealism and his unconventional religious beliefs. Rousseau believed in the original innocence of man. meadow]”. allows the children more time to play “on the green [i. although the sun has set. The nurse. and absence of frustration or inhibition. In these poems. the pressure of civilisation and an education which cultivates the intellect at the expense of the soul are likely to destroy in man the natural state of grace. The innocence associated with childhood is for him the equivalent of the original state of paradisal innocence. does not mean ignorance. is a biblical allusion.” can “laugh away care. and the perception of childhood was greatly influenced by Jean Jacques Rousseau’s ideas. associated with childhood. because she has the empathic understanding of the children’s need for freedom. suggesting the child’s closeness to a protective divinity. love. Innocence. the shepherd. The world of Innocence is the paradise of freedom. 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. The child has a kind of wisdom which comes from the freshness and freedom of his imagination. which a proper education should develop. in his natural tendency to virtue. who express their candid feelings of piety and uninhibited joy. For Blake.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. with which Blake was acquainted. taking care of his flock of innocent lambs. According to him. gratified desire. in Nurse’s Song. the Songs of Innocence display protective figures like the caring mother or nurse.
5.” Answer in the space below. in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. 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 the Reader.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 7 Read Text 6. If there should be a significant difference between them. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 165 . which reproduces Blake’s poem The Lamb. and in which he represents to himself its “making. at the end of the unit. Focus on the way in which the child imagines the creator of the lamb. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
when this life ends. of the prejudices and constraints with which man “enchains” his own mind. Like the chimney sweeper. or the mind of others. disease. the ethical and social implications are more obvious. Blake’s speakers in these poems are often bitter and ironic. In The Chimney Sweeper*.4. The fall from the paradise of Innocence to Experience is the entrance in a world of rules and constraints. but the child in the poem is comforted by the vision of the Angel. in the poems that he added in 1794: the Songs of Experience. the thirst for war. protesting against the evils of his time. full of indignation and anger. love and joy have been replaced by fear. The Clod and the Pebble Songs of Experience contrasts selfless with selfish love. society and divinity. hate. the child has a wonderful vision of all souls freed from their “clouds” of flesh – black or white –. The serene and peaceful pastoral setting of the world of Innocence is set in opposition with the sombre world of Experience. poverty and oppression.5. The complete work offered now a set of contrary symbolic visions of man. In London. and Nurse’s Song shows the (1794) jealousy consuming an adult who has lost the vision of Innocence. the greed of the powerful and their indifference to the sufferings caused by social injustice. The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Blake developed such implications into open statements. standing equal before God. Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence Blake’s graceful Songs of Innocence may appear to be simple and transparent.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. of “stony laws*”. In The Little Black Boy – an anti-slavery poem –. nature. In Songs of Experience. it is suggested that human suffering and oppression is the result of “mind-forged manacles*”. which is a promise of divine mercy. for instance.e. even sarcastic. the little black boy is “protected” by his imagination and finds the same comfort for the present sorrows in the Christian promise of a happy afterlife. The world is seen through the eyes of an angry observer. 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.4. for instance. envy and deceit. The poet attacks the tyranny exercised on the individual by the church and state. a gloomy reality makes itself felt sometimes. the reader cannot help noticing paradoxes and contradictions. 6. often.4. However. in which man’s lot is hard work. the reader cannot miss the implicit reference to the social reality of children’s exploitation and cruel treatment. A poem like A Poison Tree points out Title page of the murderous effects of secret hate. which deny man his freedom. 166 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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. i. In the fallen state of Experience. Beyond the children’s innocent visions of happiness and harmony. but.
e. you]?) and his own answer.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. Quote the respective words or line(s) and give your comment in the space below. Read this poem – Text 6.6. innocent question (“Little Lamb. SAQ 8 In Blake’s poem Infant Sorrow. who made thee [i. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in the Reader – and find out in its lines suggestions for at least one aspect which defines this “dangerous” world. The implication is that knowledge in the state of Experience is always incomplete and fragmentary. and the rhythms of the poems are also more difficult. provoking more anxiety than certainty. 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. in a paragraph of 10 lines / 100 words at the most. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 167 . dangerous tiger. at the end of the unit. the event of a child’s birth becomes the symbol of the fall into the world of Experience. by ambiguity and even obscurity. Knowledge in the world of Experience The clarity and directness of Songs of Innocence is replaced. If it should differ in major respects. in Songs of Experience. with no explicit answer.6.4. The speaker in the latter poem wonders not only who created the “fearful symmetry” of the powerful. The two stanzas of The Lamb contain the child’s simple. This suggests that the world of Experience is more opaque and uncertain. but also if this creator is also that of the gentle lamb. while The Tyger consists only in an accumulation of questions.
” in a country that is “rich and fruitful.4. “contrary states of the human soul. seeing it as an instrument of oppression and a source of corruption. This is the God of the world of Experience. with its “mysteries”*. which are thus strengthening their own power. 168 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in Blake’s view.” which lead to contrary visions.7. like that of Hell as a punishment for sin. as Blake indicated in the subtitle. was responsible. A deeply religious person. The Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience is bitterly ironic about the way in which “God. a stern. compared with “flowers” and “Thames’ waters. since those are “babes reduced to misery. imposing constraints and inflicting punishment. and His Priest. but he seems to be fully aware of his condition in an unjust world. He displays. the spectator to the same scene has a quite different vision. Blake hated nevertheless the church as an institution. this sad reality is shadowed by the speaker’s idyllic description of the poor children of London. He sees nothing “holy” in the beautiful picture. but with ways of seeing and feeling. indeed.” In the counterpart poem. In the poem of Innocence. tyrannical figure. One of the targets of Blake’s critical attacks is the Church. a double awareness of his own innocence and of the hypocritical and cruel world around him. and he is also a child. Blake made in fact a distinction between the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament. The church.” or with a “multitude of lambs. The double vision in Blake’s Songs Several other poems in Songs of Experience have a counterpart in Songs of Experience.” Such corresponding poems illustrate the fact that Innocence and Experience are not necessarily to be associated with ages in man’s life. Reason and Energy*. in fact. Love and Hate are necessary to Human existence.” The angry speaker protests against the duplicity of a society that feeds its poor “with cold and usurous* hand.” The idea of Heaven as a reward of happiness for earthly misery.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. The former is represented in Blake’s work (the Prophetic Books included) as an “angry” God. for keeping man at a distance from God. They reveal. but also complementary aspects of man’s imagination. and King” “make up a Heaven of our misery. in Blake’s view: “Attraction and Repulsion. in Songs of Experience.” Blake’s Songs suggest that Innocence and Experience are not only inevitable stages in human growth. was seen by Blake as an instrument by which the church kept men in a state of obedience. Contraries are essential to progression. served by the institutionalised churches. which allows the rich and powerful of this world to ease their conscience and “buy” Heaven by occasional and festive acts of charity. The two poems entitled Holy Thursday* deal with the hypocrisy of the church. bearing even the same titles. There is a Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience as well.
to 6. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The speaker’s “journey” to the garden of Love is an attempt to revive the former state.7. Explain them in no more than 20 lines / 200 words.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 9 The poem The Garden of Love – Text 6.4. to regain the vision of Innocence. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 169 . The two “states of the human soul” are here set in contrast. in the Reader – tells the story of the loss of Innocence and the entrance in the state of Experience. at the end of the unit. Read the poem carefully and identify the symbols by means of which the two states are contrasted.2.. revise subchapters 6.1. but he is no longer able to do that. If there should be major differences between them.4. except as an act of remembering. and read the poem again more carefully.
William Collins and William Cowper approach the theme of Nature. Their poetry displays an unprecedented attention to natural detail. Another feature of 18th century pre-Romantic poetry is the perception of rural life in its close connection with Nature. in its relation with “the two contrary states of the human soul”: Innocence and Experience.. One of them is the emergence of a kind of meditative poetry fond of melancholy themes and gloomy settings. The theme of Nature in pre-Romantic poetry is sometimes closely associated with the opposition country-town. In subchapter 6. Oliver Goldsmith emphasises the idyllic happiness of the traditional rural civilisation. The transition from the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling in the 18th century was accompanied by changes in literary taste.English pre-Romantic poetry Summary This unit aims at enlarging your picture of the literary diversity of the 18th century. 6. 170 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The first subchapter of this unit deals with two prominent features announcing the Romantic sensibility. and they acknowledge Nature’s subtle influence on man’s thoughts. the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience completing each other. imagination and feelings. The latter may be also seen as complementary aspects of poetic imagination. Subchapter 6. Edward Young and Thomas Gray) illustrate this new trend. as Blake’s “double” poems suggest. in whose work pre-Romantic and Romantic elements meet.. now threatened by the march of Progress. deals with the way in which poets like James Thomson. who sees the opposition nature-civilisation in the light of the myth of Paradise and of the Fall. you have been acquainted with two poets who turned their attention to the rural universe. The theme of childhood is examined in several Songs. The same theme and situation acquires contrary implications. and of Thomas Chatterton with the Middle Ages anticipates the Romantic spirit. and seeks to arouse compassion for the life of labour and poverty of the English peasant. nature-civilisation. g. presents the outstanding figure of William Blake. by focusing on those tendencies in poetry which prefigure the Romantic Age. His Songs of Innocence and of Experience are the testimony of the visionary artist.4. The other feature is primitivism. the interest in early poetry.3. The last subchapter. The “Graveyard” poets (e.2. The fascination of James Macpherson with Britain’s Celtic past. He condemns the literary habit of idealising the countryside. George Crabbe adopts a more realistic and critical view.
while Reason was concerned with setting limits. Imagination was free Energy. because the life of the poor was not actually reflected in such official records. goddess of Memory. Sometimes.2. civilisation rural universe primitivism melancholy sentimentalism humanitarianism childhood imagination Innocence and Experience double vision Glossary • • • annals: yearly record of events. as the next subchapter will show.2. which has survived in parts of Scotland. Daughters of Memory: in Greek mythology. and horror. children were often employed for the cleaning of chimneys. It was a kind of work that contributed to the child mortality rate. 171 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . for instance. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. passion. the term “Gothic” referred to the mediaeval inspiration of such tales of mystery. Energy: for Blake. chimney sweeper: in the 18th century.e. Initially. The first Gothic novel was Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (1764). graveyards. ruins. Haunted castles. or Erse. enclosed portions of land were turned into private parks and gardens. Ireland and Wales. Celtic refers also to the language spoken by the Celts. in Unit 4. The Celtic variety spoken in Ireland and Scotland is called Gaelic. Gothic novel: a type of fiction that emerged in opposition with the realistic novel in the 18th century. the nine Muses were indeed the daughters of Mnemosyne. decorum: see subchapter 4. Their father was Zeus. Gray is sadly ironic. which they could climb more easily. for the sake of more profitable farming. enclosure: in the latter half of the 18th century. the members of an Indo-European people who inhabited Britain before the arrival of the Romans. the enclosures meant ruin. Celtic: related to the Celts. and they were forced to find work in towns or to emigrate to America. favour melancholy or morbid themes. A tendency in 18th century poetry went precisely against this rule.English pre-Romantic poetry Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● pre-Romantic nature vs. the changes in agriculture led to the enclosing (i. For the small farmers. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. putting fences round) common land. The Neoclassic principle of decorum did not.
when the ascension of Christ is celebrated. luxury and materialism of urban civilisation.3. Prophetic Books: the generic name for Blake’s longer (and often obscure) epics. The feeling of nostalgia for a supposed Golden Age and the praise of the “state of Nature” are also features of primitivism. A Prophecy.3. orphaned children from the charity schools to St. 2 in Unit 4.2. etc. manacles: a pair of iron rings linked by a chain. were typical settings in Gothic fiction. Holy Thursday: another name for Ascension Day.1. Milton. concerning the typology of the novel in the 18th century. on which the Ten Commandments were written. sentimental novel: see subchapter 5. with His laws formulated as interdictions. The Book of Los. Jerusalem. Among the most important of them are America. wild landscapes. Los: Blake’s mythological character represents human Imagination in his epics. Primitivism in literature refers to the admiration for and revival of early forms. and he rejected the pretense of the Church to intermediate between man and God. in Unit 1. Pity. Highlands of Scotland: the mountainous area in northern Scotland.) poetic diction: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Blake associated “mystery” with secrecy and deceit. mysteries: the system of sacramental rites affording access to divinely revealed truths. who attacked and sometimes settled in parts of Britain between the 8th and 11th centuries. belonging to the beginnings. and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 172 . stony laws: the figurative meaning of “stony” – heartless. the 39th day after Easter. as well as against the sophistication. in Unit 5. which still preserves elements of the ancient Gaelic culture. to attend the religious service. especially to the Vikings (or Norsemen). Neoclassicism: see the Glossary in Unit 1. The Four Zoas. Most of Collins’s odes are addressed to personified abstractions (Fear. Romanticism: see again Romantic in the Glossary in Unit 1. philosophical and political convictions. in Unit 3. etc. ode: see the Glossary in Unit 1. The Book of Urizen. The custom in London was to bring the poor. illuminated (about a piece of writing): decorated by the application of colour. primitive: original. or of gold or silver paint. and in which he gives an allegorical shape to his religious.. Il Penseroso: see again subchapter 3. Paul’s Cathedral. used to secure the hands of a prisoner. See also subchapter 4.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • secret chambers and corridors. It is associated with the reaction against Neoclassicism. which have a complex structure of symbolism and analogies. Norse: related to the ancient Scandinavian people. unfeeling – is intensified by Blake’s allusion to Moses and the Tables of the Law. the Passions. Blake distinguished between the prohibitive divinity of the Old Testament. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1.1.
10. • 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. the unlawful practice of lending money at an exorbitant rate of interest. meant to win a patron’s favour. and Holy Thursday (Texts 6. in grading your paper. 6. Pay special attention to the instructions for the task. The Chimney Sweeper. Gallery of personalities • Rousseau. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 173 .13. • the coherence. He condemned social inequality and regarded the sovereignty of the people as the only legitimate form of political power..). whose radicalism strongly influenced the ideology of the French Revolution. with his law of love. Remember that. gardens or estates. clarity. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). 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). Send-away assignment no.” usurous: from usury.11. Tyger: Blake’s spelling of “tiger. Jean Jacques: (1712-1778): French writer and philosopher..8... 6.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • Jesus. Many topographical poems were praises of particular parks. 3 will count as 10% in your final assessment.12.9. SAA no. Point out the pre-Romantic themes and attitudes that these poems illustrate. Your commentary should not exceed 50 lines / 500 words. 6. Pay special attention to the images in these poems and to their symbolic significance. and 6. 6. 3 The Reader includes some of the “pair poems” from Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Nurse’s Song. topographical poem: a poem in which the description of a landscape is accompanied by meditation and historical retrospection.
or seek for power.” vitality and cheerfulness of the idyllic village life. Health and virtue are God’s “gifts” to man. but relieved their pain” 6. In the city. Nor e’er had changed. the mind can see beyond the “dim” surface of things. the “drooping weary” father. 4. 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. 174 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the place where “health and virtue” can be found abounding. “Unpractised he to fawn. The country is thus a substitute for Eden. b. There is a general sense of decay and exhaustion in the humble scene in the cottage: the “pale” mother. a. all intensified.” “expiring” fire suggest overwork. “Remote from towns he ran his godly race. the country is therefore morally superior to the city. Their hard life has no room for illusions about the comforts of old age. disease and poverty. the vagants’] wanderings. “His house was known to all the vagrant train” “The long-remembered beggar was his guest” 2. Crabbe also gives a reply to those who idealise rural nature: instead of the pleasing “smooth stream” sung in such poetry. the “feeble. This heightened understanding is accompanied by “correspondent passions”: love of God. Its bare.English pre-Romantic poetry Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. “More skilled to raise the wretched than to rise” 4. nor wished to change his place” 3. Meditation leads to illumination. love of nature. c SAQ 2 1. Crabbe presents a desolate picture. “He chid their [i. SAQ 4 The personified Philosophic Melancholy exerts “his” influence on man’s imagination. on his soul. these gifts are “threatened” – the life of pleasure and luxury with which the city tempts man may corrupt his moral fiber. broken branches are a “sad emblem” of the unrewarding existence of the poor in the countryside. By doctrines fashioned to the varying hour” 5. “passing rich with forty pounds a year” SAQ 3 In contrast with Goldsmith’s idealised image of rural happiness and ease. he focuses sharply on the withered tree. SAQ 5 The first line of the fragment contains the implication that everything made by God is perfect. For Cowper. to enable him to bear more easily the burden of life.e. d. 2. and on his thoughts. and love of man. whereas what man makes is inevitably deficient. 3.
vales) emphasise the close connection between Innocence and Nature. This is also suggested by the gloomy figure of the priests. disappointments and frustrations that await man in the world of Experience. The vision of Experience reveals to him the perspective of death: the garden turns out to be a graveyard. the few elements of the natural setting (stream. It is the intuition of Innocence that dictates the confident answer to the child: the Creator is Jesus. incarnated in a child and having the Lamb as a symbol. The pain and sorrow accompanying birth are symbolic anticipations of the suffering. F. in Blake’s vision. no longer able – or permitted – to relate to God “naturally” and directly. the lamb is God’s gift to the child: it is a “delight” to look at and to touch. which he has lost. therefore. In a vision of Innocence. confinement and oppressive authority. my father wept” – In the vision of Experience. and the father weeps perhaps because his new baby comes into a world of trouble and cares. 6. The mother “groans” with the pains of delivery. a child’s birth is no cause for joy. In the simple economy of the poem.” 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. If the child’s play suggests the freedom and pleasure enjoyed in the state of Innocence. T. “My mother groaned. the God of Love. 5. SAQ 9 The “garden” where he “used to play” – the Eden of childhood – is the symbol of the state of Innocence. and. The interdiction “Thou shall not” on the door of the chapel suggests repression and limitation. it controls man’s relationship with Divinity. His swaddling bands and his father’s arms do not suggest care and protection. T. Experience brings about inhibition and constraint. and the beauty of the “sweet flowers” – symbols of life – is replaced by the grim image of the tombstones. 4. “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. the child identifies himself and the lamb with Jesus. T. Man. F SAQ 7 The child cannot imagine the Creator of the lovely and tender creature otherwise than “meek and mild. 3. and is itself one more care in the family. gentle and humble like the lamb itself. At the same time. being thus a source of oppression. In the second stanza. against which man. in the state of Experience. meadow. 2. 7. 2. T. “walking their rounds” like soldiers guarding a Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 175 .English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 1. struggles in vain. SAQ 8 Examples: 1. The shut gates of the chapel symbolise the estrangement of man from God. and his “tender voice” fills all nature with joy. The church as an institution belongs to the world of Experience. F.” that is. Nature and Divinity form a harmonious whole. the “Lamb of God. but are symbols of limitation.
. Further reading 1. 671-684. Penguin Books Ltd. A Critical History of English Literature. 1991 (pp. 1969 (pp. Boris (ed.. vol.5 (“From Blake to Byron”). Ford. 692-699) 2. 1991 (pp. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Daiches. 6987) 176 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . vol. Ford..). Penguin Books Ltd. Boris (ed. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”).4 (“From Dryden to Johnson”). 652-658.English pre-Romantic poetry restricted area. 84-94) 3. vol. David. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. and conditioning man’s access to the mystery of Divinity on the suppression of his desire.).
Reader READER in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 177 .
această boltă falnică împodobită cu scântei de aur. for what reason mirth happiness and laughter foregone to forego. Scene II) Hamlet: (…) I have of late*. in moving. Hamlet (Act II. forewent.g. to me. seems to me a sterile promontory. cât de chibzuit şi de admirabil e în faptele sale. alcătuirile şi mişcările. văzduhul. cât de nobilă îi este inteligenţa. shape canopy a large or wide covering (e. foregone* all custom of exercises. încât acest frumos tărâm. William Shakespeare. the sky) brave minunat. foregone: to give up goodly pleasant or satisfying in appearance frame form.Reader UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE TEXT 2. într-adevăr. and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly* frame*. vedeţi. how express and admirable! In action how like an angel. cum să spun. look you. What a piece of work is man! How noble in Reason! How infinite in faculty! In form. this brave* overhanging* firmament*. ce înseamnă această chintesenţă a ţărânii? Omul nu mă desfată (…). nu ştiu – mi-am pierdut toată voioşia. îmi pare un promontoriu sterp. this majestical roof fretted* with golden fire. 178 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . acest preaminunat baldachin. this most excellent canopy*. in apprehension* how like a god!! The beauty of the world! The paragon* of animals! And yet. acest mândru firmament ce senalţă deasupra noastră. ce fără de număr îi sunt facultăţile. what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights me not (…). nu-mi pare alta decât un vălmăşag odios şi infect de miasme. pildă a vieţuitoarelor. pământul. cât de asemenea unui zeu: frumuseţea lumii. the air. strălucitor overhanging hanging over firmament (archaic. – lost all my mirth*. sufletul îmi este atât de apăsat. of late recently wherefore why. pentru mine. Ce minunată lucrare e omul. – but wherefore* I know not. the earth. literary) the sky fretted decorated foul very bad or unpleasant apprehension understanding. it appears no other thing to me but a foul* and pestilent congregation of vapours.excelent.1. şi. cât de asemenea unui înger în puterea sa de înţelegere. ability to understand paragon a model of excellence Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi and Dan Duţescu) Hamlet: În ultima vreme – de ce. m-am lăsat de toate obişnuitele exerciţii. şi totuşi.
and tomorrow. to creep. That struts* and frets* his hour upon the stage. And then is heard no more. a se furişa) petty inessential. cu un aer important to fret to be distressed. And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death. a înnoda ravelled destrămat. full of sound* and fury. and tomorrow. Sleep that knits up* the ravelled* sleeve* of care. crept to move quiety and slowly (a se târî. brief* candle*! Life’s but a walking shadow. ţanţoş.” the innocent sleep.2. Creeps* in this petty* pace from day to day.Reader TEXT 2. sore* labour’s bath. scene V) Macbeth: Tomorrow. scalda grelei trude şi balsamul Durerii sufleteşti. a se frământa) sound zgomot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 179 . moartea vieţii fiecărei zile. Chief* nourisher* in life’s feast* (…). Macbeth (Act II. great nature’s second course*. William Shakespeare. Out*. trifling (mărunt.3. cel ce desface Fuiorul încâlcit al grijii – somnul: El. William Shakespeare. isprăveşte (stinge-te) brief short in duration candle lumânare to strut a umbla/păşi/călca mândru. chinuitor) course fel de mâncare chief most important. To the last syllable of recorded time. şi-a doua mană A marii firi. trivial. a poor player. scene II) Macbeth: Methought* I heard a voice cry “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep. neînsemnat) out (interjection) termină. Balm of hurt minds. methought past tense from methinks (archaic): it seems to me to knit up a împleti. Macbeth (Act V. desfirat. The death of each day’s life. 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. iar la ospăţul vieţii Cel mai de seamă fel. out. it is a tale Told by an idiot. Signifying nothing. semeţ. desfăcut sleeve mânecă sore causing grief or sorrow (dureros. to be in a state of anxiety and agitation (a se agita. El. principal nourisher that which gives (someone) what is needed to grow. TEXT 2.
Though thou didst learn*. lumânare de o clipă! Ni-e viaţa doar o umbră călătoare. redus. Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee*. a bâigui) brutish coarse. cruel. netrebnic. sălbatic. Din vorbe-alcătuită şi din zbucium Şi nensemnând nimic. Te stinge. mârşav. 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. Spre cel din urmă semn din cartea vremii. Know thine* own meaning. ticălos) race neam. The Tempest (Act I. Un biet actor. TEXT 2. Which any print* of goodness will not take. Şi fiecare “ieri” a luminat Nebunilor pe-al morţii drum de colb. tagmă thou didst learn you did learn to abide a răbda. tot mereu. a suporta therefore as a result. William Shakespeare. Cu pas mărunt se-alungă zi de zi. had that in it which good natures Could not abide* to be with. abject. E o poveste spusă de-un nătâng. and my profit on it Is I know how to curse: the red plague rid you. for that reason wast thou were you deservedly rightly learning teaching vile 180 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but wouldst* gabble* like A thing most brutish*. taught thee each hour One thing or other: when thou didst not*. stupid (necioplit.Reader Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Dar mâine şi iar mâine. Caliban: You taught me language. therefore* wast thou* Deservedly* confined* into this rock Who hadst deserved more than a prison. I endowed thy purposes With words that made them known: but thy vile* race*. savage. 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. scene II) Prospero: Abhorred* slave. mărginit) shameful and evil.4. nasty (josnic.
pe drept. Plămadă suntem precum cea din care Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 181 . Şi întocmai Ca funigeii viziunii. alcătuire) cloud-capped towers towers whose tops are capped (covered) by clouds yea (archaic. dar. duhuri. Scoteai doar mugete. Caliban: M-ai învăţat vorbi. the great globe itself. afară doar De-un dram de bunătate! Mi-a fost milă. când tu.Reader Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Slugoi scârbavnic. avea ceva Ce bunul simţ nu rabdă. Deşi-ai fost dăscălit. all which it inherit. rack a floating cloud Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Serbarea noastră s-a sfârşit. temelie) fabric building. These our actors. Yea*. şi-n văzduh S-au destrămat cu toţii. ţi-am arătat Al vorbei meşteşug. etc. foretold: a anunţa. and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. se vor topi Şi. ca-nchipuită scena-aceasta. indeed pageant splendid public show or ceremony faded to fade: to lose brightness. duşi. au fost. nepricepând Nici tu ce bălmăjeşti. turnuri Cu turlele în nori. As I foretold* you. scene I) Prospero: Our revels* are now ended. The solemn temples. literary) truly. revels festivitate teatrală pentru curteni foretold to foretell. Te-am surghiunit aici. cu singurul folos Că ştiu acum să-njur – dea ciuma-n tine Şi-n limba ce m-ai învăţat. Biserici maiestoase. palate mândre. În stare de orice. The Tempest (Act IV. Te-am învăţat de toate. like the baseless* fabric* of this vision. shall dissolve And. into thin air: And. când meritai Mai mult decât o temniţă. framework (clădire. a se dizolva baseless unfounded (fără bază. fiară. Nici spulber n-au să lase-n urma lor. We are such stuff As dreams are made on. the gorgeous palaces. like this insubstantial pageant* faded*. TEXT 2. Actorii Ţi-am spus. were all spirits and Are melted* into air. M-am străduit sa te deprind cu graiul. dar proasta-ţi fire. Cu tot ce-a moştenit. a spune dinainte melted to melt: a se topi. consistency. toţi.5. Leave not a rack* behind. William Shakespeare. colour. structure. The cloud-capped towers*. chiar pământul.
as that comes home.6. Though I must go. Like the other foot. Like gold to aery thinness beat. That our selves know not what it is.Reader Făcute-s visele. endure* not yet A breach*. John Donne. but doth. And whisper* to their souls. obliquely run. But trepidation of the spheres. It leans*. to go. no: So let us melt*. where I begun. And grows erect*. lips. şi scurta viaţă Împrejmuită ni-e de somn. Yet when the other far doth roam*. Such wilt* thou* be to me. No tear-floods. A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning As virtuous men pass mildly* away*. makes no show To move. Moving of the earth* brings harms and fears. The breath goes now. who must. Whilst* some of their sad friends do say. which are one. If they be two. But we by a love so much refined. and hearkens* after it. Men reckon* what it did and meant. Our two souls therefore. Dull* sublunary* lovers’ love (Whose soul is sense*) cannot admit Absence. And makes me end. and some say. nor sigh-tempests* move. but an expansion. TEXT 2. ‘Twere* profanation of our joys To tell the laity* our love. because it doth* remove* Those things which elemented* it. Care less eyes. 182 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . if the other do. they are two so As stiff* twin* compasses are two. and make no noise. is innocent. Thy* soul the fixed foot. Though greater far. And though it in centre sit. Inter-assured of the mind*. and hands to miss. Thy firmness makes my circle just*.
gladly betrothed unto logodit cu to untie a dezlega. datorat to labour to work hard. untie*. sigh-tempests şuvoaie/potop de lacrimi. to no end*. but oh. and make me new. a înfrânge bend your force concentrate. rupture stiff rigid. imprison me. But am betrothed* unto your enemy. burn. mirean) moving of the earth earthquake to reckon a gândi. to another due*. a elibera to enthrall a supune. a lua cu sila. a presupune dull not intense sublunary: beneath the moon. except you ravish* me. to make disappear which elemented it which constituted/founded it inter-assured of the mind we are both assured that our love is primarily the union of our minds to endure to suffer. o’erthrow me*. exact Text 2. a rătăci to lean. a ajunge în poziţie verticală wilt will thou you just corect. a fi supus (the speaker urges his beloved to face the separation calmly and quietly) tear-floods. shine. for I Except your enthrall* me. softly to whisper a şopti whilst while to melt a-şi înmuia firea. you As yet* but knock. Reason your viceroy* in me. hotărât twin îngemănat thy your to roam a hoinări. Labour* to admit you. ferm. John Donne. and proves weak or untrue*. and would be loved fain*. a subjuga to ravish a răpi. Nor ever chaste.: inflexibil. overthrown: a nimici. to undergo breach break. Divorce 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. Yet dearly I love you. leant a se apleca. or break that knot again. three-personed God*. and bend Your force*. a înrobi. like an usurped town. and stand. a se înclina to hearken a asculta. therefore subject to change whose soul is sense in which physical presence is essential doth does to remove to take away. breathe. to long for) to grow erect a se îndrepta. Take me to you. a silui Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 183 . precis. a fi atent la (here: to seek to join. Batter My Heart Batter* my heart. That I may* rise. apply your force due cuvenit. blow.Reader pass away to die mildly gently.7. for. I. and seek to mend. batter to hit or beat someone heavily three-personed God the Trinity as yet până acum that I may in order that I may o’erthrow to overthrow. fig. to break. never shall be free. But is captived. to struggle to no end vainly. me should defend. overthrew. 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.
184 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Two hundred to adore each breast. I think. But none. and time. yet we will make him run. Now therefore. though we cannot make our sun Stand still. in thy marble vault*. Thus. Thy beauty shall no more be found. And tear* our pleasure with rough strife* Thorough* the iron gates of life. Andrew Marvell. Rather at once our devour Than languish* in his slow-chapt power*. And now. and think which way To talk.Reader TEXT 2. do there embrace. Let us roll all our strength and all Our sweetness up into one ball. I by the tide Of Humber* would complain. Nor would I love at lower rate. And yonder* all before us lie Deserts of vast eternity. were no crime. My vegetable* love should grow Vaster than empires and more slow. And your quaint* honor turn to dust. An hundred years should go to praise Thine* eyes. you deserve this state*. and pass our long love’s day. For. then worms shall try That long-preserved virginity. And while thy willing* soul transpires At every pore with instant fires*. And the last age should show your heart. like amorous birds of prey. Lady. And you should. Now let us sport* while we may. if you please. I would Love you ten years before the Flood*. Nor. But at my back I always hear Time’s winged* chariot* hurrying near. And into ashes all my lust*: The grave*’s a fine and private place. This coyness*. To His Coy Mistress Had we but* world enough. An age at least to every part.8. Thou* by the Indian Ganges’ side Shouldst* rubies* find. shall sound My echoing song. refuse Till the conversion of the Jews*. and on thy* forehead gaze. We would sit down. But thirty thousand to the rest. Lady. while the youthful* hue* Sits on thy skin like morning dew*.
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. fig. in spite of her coyness. sfială. fast chariot ceremonial carriage (car) yonder (poetic) over there vault burial chamber (cavou) quaint odd. a se veseli to languish a se ofili. nuanţă. groapă youthful de tinereţe. a se plictisi slow-chapt power the power of its slowly devouring jaws to tear (tore. inappropriate (nefiresc) ashes cenuşă lust strong sexual desire (dorinţă. tineresc hue culoare. indicates her “willing soul” to sport a petrece.: swift. thy your state ceremonial treatment winged having wings. a lâncezi. a lua cu de-a sila strife violent struggle thorough through Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 185 . torn) a smulge. tentă dew rouă willing favourably disposed. which. inclined instant fires the flush in her face. patimă) grave mormânt.Reader had we but… if only we had coyness timiditate. peculiar.
And inward ripeness* doth* much less appear. 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. 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.e to a lesser extent) still always lot fortune. All is. appears [in me] much less – i. chide*. boboc showeth shows (My late spring shows no bud or blossom) semblance outward appearance to deceive to mislead (a înşela) manhood bărbăţie. soon replies: “God doth not need Either man's work or his own gifts.1. Sonnet XVII When I consider how my light* is spent*.2. though my soul more bent* To serve therewith* my maker. obscure. vârstă adultă ripeness maturitate doth does timely occuring atjust the right moment. a strict overseer TEXT 3. Yet be it less or more. insignificant ever eternity task-master the one who imposes tasks.” 186 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . But my late spring no bud* or blossom showeth*. John Milton. they serve him best. to prevent That murmur*. It shall be still* in strictest measure even To that same lot*. Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year*! My hasting days fly on with full career*. Sonnet VII How soon hath* time. '”Doth God exact* day-labour. to endue: a înzestra (Inward ripeness. and present My true account. That I to manhood* am arrived so near. Toward which time leads me. And that one talent* which is death to hide Lodged with me useless*. speed. As ever* in my great task-master's* eye. Ere* half my days.Reader UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON TEXT 3. or soon or slow. in this dark world and wide. rush bud mugur. lucky endueth endues. light denied*?” I fondly* ask. and the will of heaven. Perhaps my semblance* might deceive* the truth. John Milton. destiny mean humble. but Patience. which endues some more timely-happy spirits. That some more timely*-happy* spirits endueth*. lest he. opportune happy fortunate. however mean* or high. returning. if I have grace to use it so. the subtle* thief of youth. who best Bear his mild yoke*.
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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ye you (pl. your eyes. a apuca Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 191 . 3. His worshippers? He knows that. 4. shall perfectly be then Opened and cleared. reach* then. for this fair* Earth I see. What can your knowledge hurt him. that seem so clear Yet are but dim*. producing every kind. and ye shall be like Gods. John Milton. ye* shall not die. these and many more Causes import* your need of this fair fruit. and freely taste. then. Shall that be shut to Man which to the beast Is open? 2. And what are Gods. in the day Ye eat thereof*. as they know. Paradise Lost (Book IX) 1. din el/ea (eat from the Tree of Knowledge) dim having weak or indistinct vision participating sharing godlike divine to proceed (from) to originate. Warmed by the Sun. a se încumeta forbid forbidden low humble. to emerge fair beautiful to import a însemna to reach a întinde mâna. do not believe Those rigid threats of death. if all be his? Or is it envy? and can envy dwell In heavenly breasts? These. Queen of the Universe. by venturing* higher than my lot. Me who have touched and tasted. was this forbid*? Why but to awe? Why but to keep ye low* and ignorant. that all from them proceeds*. and that advantage use On our belief. by the Threatener? look on me. Them nothing. or this tree Impart against his will.Reader TEXT 3.8. I question it.) venturing to venture: a îndrăzni. that Man may not become As they. Knowing both good and evil. participating* godlike* food? The Gods are first. modest thereof din ace(a)sta. How should ye? by the fruit? it gives you life To knowledge. Why. yet both live And life more perfect have attained than Fate Meant me. Goddess humane.
with wandering steps and slow. The world was all before them. Waved over by that flaming brand*. and Providence their guide. hand in hand. literary): to look at so late până nu demult seat locaş. beheld to behold. care arde natural firesc 192 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the gate With dreadful faces thronged* and fiery* arms: Some natural* tears they dropped. They. 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. looking back.Reader TEXT 3. so late* their happy seat*. John Milton. all the eastern side beheld* Of Paradise. but wiped them soon. where to choose Their place of rest. Paradise Lost (Book XII) They.9. beheld (archaic.
Millamant: Trifles* – as liberty to pay and receive visits* to and from whom I please. and choose conversation with regard only to my own taste. wherever I am. and as well bred as if we were not married at all. which you must never presume* to approach without first asking leave*. to be sole* empress of my tea table. to have no obligation upon me to converse with wits* that I don’t like. so far trifle fleac. dine in my dressing room when I’m out of humour*. to wear what I please. Let us never visit together. nor kiss before folks*. because they may be your relations*. nor go to a play together.Reader UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE TEXT 4. like my Lady Faddler and Sir Francis. abătut closet a small private room inviolate in which nobody intrudes sole only. 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. manierat. the only oneto presume to dare (a îndrăzni) to ask leave to ask permission Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 193 . tender folks people chariot trăsură to provoke eyes and whispers to attract attention and provoke gossip (bârfă) strange distant. because they are your acquaintance.1. nor go to Hyde Park together the first Sunday in a new chariot*. you shall always knock at the door before you come in. or to be intimate with fools. as if we were proud of one another the first week. and then never be seen there together again. let us be as strange as if we had been married a great while*. without interrogatories or wry faces* on your part. to provoke eyes and whispers*. Mirabell: Have you any more conditions to offer? Hitherto* your demands are pretty reasonable. To have my closet* inviolate*. politicos a great while a long time hitherto until this time. and ashamed of one another ever after. William Congreve. reserved well-bred binecrescut. without giving a reason. Come to dinner when I please. to write and receive letters. And lastly. don’t let us be familiar or fond*. but let us be very strange* and well bred*. The Way of the World Millamant: (…) Good Mirabell. (…) fond affectionate.
perfecţiune stroke lovitură TEXT 4. A Discourse Concerning the Original and Progress of Satire How easy is it to call rogue* and villain*. and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth. a blockhead*. and therefore few only can judge how nearly* they are copied. which can operate but* upon small numbers. nemernic opprobrious insulting betwixt between slovenly neglijent butchering căsăpire. and that wittily*! But how hard to make a man appear a fool.2. rogue pungaş. dobitoc. In the writings of other poets a character is too often an individual: in those of Shakespeare it is commonly a species. a furniza 194 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Shakespeare is. descendenţi to supply a oferi. Particular manners* may be known to few. ticălos. or a knave* without using any of those opprobrious* terms! (…) There is (…) a vast difference betwixt* the slovenly* butchering* of a man. successfully irregular neuniform. măcelărire fineness eleganţă. transitory (trecător) progeny urmaşi.Reader TEXT 4. the poet that holds up to his readers a faithful mirror of manners and of life. pungaş. by the peculiarities* of studies or professions. Samuel Johnson. fantezist awhile for a short period satiety the state of being too much filled or satisfied peculiarity particularitate but only transient temporary. or by the accidents of transient* fashions or temporary opinions: they are the genuine progeny* of common humanity. lichea wittily in a witty manner (cu mult spirit) blockhead nătâng. The irregular* combinations of fanciful* invention may delight awhile* by that novelty of which the common satiety* of life sends us all in quest. but just representations of general nature. a livra. escroc. The Preface to Shakespeare Nothing can please many. the poet of nature. above all writers. unpractised by the rest of the world. at least above all modern writers. such as the world will always supply* and observation will always find. manners moravuri nearly faithfully. and the fineness* of a stroke* that separates the head from the body. secătură.3. 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. potlogar villain nemernic. John Dryden. and please long. cap sec knave escroc. and leaves it standing in its place. variabil fanciful capricios. His characters are not modified by the customs of particular places. but the pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted.
He professed both to abominate* and despise all mystery*. and almost adored by his subjects. and profound learning. to the speedy* determination* of civil and criminal causes. The learning of this people is very defective. to the improvement of agriculture and all mechanical arts*. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 195 . love. either in a prince or a minister. and the fortunes of his people. endued* with admirable talents for government. yet he would rather lose half his kingdom than be privy* to such a secret (…). to justice and lenity*. when I happened to say there were several thousand books among us written upon the art of government. they not having hitherto reduced politics into a science. consisting only in morality. it gave him (directly contrary to my intention) a very mean opinion* of our understandings. Jonathan Swift. unnecessary scruple. He could not tell what I meant by secrets of state. He confined* the knowledge of governing within very narrow bounds*: to common sense and reason. and esteem. And as to ideas. and mathematics. wherein* they must be allowed to excel. chapter VII) The King was struck with horror* at the description I had given of those terrible engines* and the proposal I had made. abstractions. (…) I take* this defect among them to have risen from their ignorance. Gulliver’s Travels (Book II. He was amazed how so impotent and grovelling* an insect as I (these were his expressions) could entertain* such inhuman ideas. let slip* an opportunity put into his hands that would have made him absolute master of the lives. But the last of these is wholly applied to what may be useful in life. entities. in a discourse one day with the King. should from a nice*. I could never drive* the least conception into their heads. and transcendentals*.Reader TEXT 4. he protested* that although few things delighted him so much as new discoveries in art or in nature.4. of strong parts. A strange effect of narrow principles and short views*! that a prince possessed of every quality which procures veneration. whereof* in Europe we can have no conception. as the more acute wits* of Europe have done. with some other obvious topics* which are not worth considering. the liberties. 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. For I remember very well. history. great wisdom. so that among us would be little esteemed. poetry. where an enemy or some rival nation were not in case. 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. refinement and intrigue.
they will dig with their claws for whole days to get them out. perspicace) mean opinion părere nefavorabilă to abominate to detest. there are certain shining stones of several colors. încheiere (a unei cauze juridice) topic temă. and activity. but still looking round with great caution. as I had described them. He said the Yahoos were known to hate one another more than they did any different species of animals. a scăpa din mână (o ocazie) I take I think. my master confessed he could find little or no resemblance between the Yahoos of that country and those in ours.g. speed. That this leader had usually a favorite as like himself as he could get. a i se încredinţa (e. the shortness of my claws*. our manners. and the like. which all could see in the rest. VII) He observed that I agreed* in every feature of my body with other Yahoos. (…) That. For he only meant to observe what parity* there was in our natures. each single one impatient* to have all to itself.5. they will instead of eating peaceably. without delay determination rezolvare. as sometimes happens. to dislike intensely mystery urzeli tainice to confine to limit. and carry them away. for fear their comrades should find out their treasure. fall together by ears*. than any of the rest. whose employment was to lick* his masters feet and posteriors. and hide them by heaps* in their kennels*. un secret) short views concepţii înguste endued înzestrat nice fastidious. greu de mulţumit) whereof of which to let slip (an opportunity) a lăsa să-i scape. arts. and some other particulars* where Nature had no part*. if (said he) you throw among five Yahoos as much food as would be sufficient for fifty. 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. in some fields of his country. and mischievous* in disposition. excessively particular about details (pretenţios. government. subiect ear of corn spic de grâu blade of grass fir de iarbă spot of ground petec de pământ wherein in which mechanical arts meşteşuguri transcendentals categorii metafizice to drive (drove. boundary (hotar) lenity tolerance (îngăduinţă) speedy quick. as in fear or humility (a se târî) to entertain (an idea) a nutri (o idee) to protest a declara.Reader struck with horror cuprins de groază engines maşini (piese de artilerie) grovelling to grovel: to crawl. a încredinţa to be privy to a fi făcut părtaş la. from the representation I had given him of our lives. a face să priceapă TEXT 4. (…) But he now found he had been mistaken. so. Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV. he found as near a resemblance in the disposition* of our minds. except where it was to my real disadvantage in point of* strength. and our actions. a asigura. (…) As to learning. manufactures*. This favorite is hated by the whole herd. for which he was known and then rewarded with a piece of ass’s flesh*. keeps always near the 196 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . and that the dissensions of those brutes in his country were owing to the same cause with ours. driven) an idea into one’s head a băga în cap. Ch. but not in themselves. whereof the Yahoos are violently fond*. to restrict bound limit. and therefore* to protect himself. For. Jonathan Swift. and when part of these stones are fixed in the earth. I suppose acute wits spirite luminate (acute: pătrunzător. and the reason usually assigned* was the odiousness* of their own shapes. and drive the female Yahoos to his kennel. a fi iniţiat în.
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 (…).
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
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
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural
oală Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 201 . (…) Though I miscarried* so much in my design* for large pots*. and observed that they did not crack at all*. 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 (…). though I had some lead to do it with. a frământa. how many cracked* by the over-violent heat of the sun. one upon another. to temper* it. after having laboured hard to find the clay. to bring it home and work it. Robinson Crusoe It would make the reader pity* me. and any things my hand turned to*. de pământ jar oală..2. when I went to put it out* after I had done with it. to dig* it. 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. how many of them fell in*. the clay* not being stiff* enough to bear its own weight*. dificil paste cocă misshapen diform fell in to fall. and how many fell out*. (fell. fallen) in: a se prăbuşi. and said to myself that certainly they might be made to burn whole if they would burn broken. in a word how. to tell how many awkward* ways I took to raise this paste*. When I saw them clear red. or glazing* them with lead*. (fell. being set out too hastily*.Reader TEXT 5. flat dishes*. so as to make it burn me some pots. which it did admirably well. and red as a tile*. But all this would not answer my end*. such as the potters* burn in. making a pretty large fire for cooking my meat. anevoios. I found a broken piece of one of my earthenware vessels* in the fire burned as hard as a stone. pitchers*. and I had hardly patience to stay till they were cold before I set one upon the fire again with some water in it to boil me some meat. and placed my firewood* all round it. Daniel Defoe. and the heat of the sun baked* them strangely hard*. to pity a căina awkward incomod. and bear* the fire. with a great heap of embers* under them. and how many fell in pieces with only removing* as well before as after they were dried. vas to miscarry a da greş design intenţie pot vas. a cădea fell out to fall. fallen) out: a se desface. ugly things I made. It happened after some time. but I placed three large pipkins and two or three pots in a pile. I had no notion of a kiln*. I was agreeably surprised to see it. 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*. which was to get an earthen pot to hold what was liquid. This set me to studying how to order* my fire. 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. dug a săpa to temper a amesteca. a se desprinde clay lut. what odd. and. and pipkins*. I let them stand in that heat about five or six hours(…). I could not make above* two large earthen* ugly things – I cannot call them jars* – in about two months’ labour. a prelucra above more than earthen de lut. or rather laugh at me. yet I made several smaller things with better success – such as little round pots. misshapen*. which none of these could do.
to find him capable of so much openness. the mind tortured by the pangs* of uncertainty (the events then hidden in the womb* of fate). apogeu distress nefericire. 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. I imagine. I had no reason to expect. that my heart was too partial* in his favour. and accounts for his rigorous* behaviour to me. did I say! […] I know not how it came. in which he confesses his affection for her. it looked like love. narrative. forgive me! but I found. nor when it began. that I shall never be able to think of any body in the world but him! Presumption*! you will say.] This letter. but now. the womb of fate: incertitudinea sorţii dry sec. than the dry*. farfurie pitcher ulcior ulcea pipkin gavanos to turn to a se apuca de lucru. For here plainly* does he confess his great value for me. like a thief. and tender years*. when I expected some new plot*.Reader dish blid. unanimated style of a person relating difficulties and dangers surmounted*. nay*. so much affection. durere. Pamela [Pamela receives a letter from Mr. But to be sure*. punct culminant. nenorocire pangs mâhnire. chinuri womb pântece. crept. upon me. B_. […] O my dear parents. doubtful lively vivid (însufleţit. my dear father.3. Much more lively* and affecting must be the style of those who write in the height* of a present distress*. în întregime at all deloc handsome frumos. O my unguarded* youth. however. a ţine la to put out (the fire) a stinge (focul) earthenware vessels vase de lut tile ţiglă. I must own* to you. Samuel Richardson. is not a voluntary thing – Love. scop. 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.4. arătos a thing of so mean a nature un lucru atât de mărunt TEXT 5. Samuel Richardson. dubious uncertain. but with what may be called instantaneous descriptions and reflections (…). She seems taken by surprise by her own feelings. a învinge. forgive your poor daughter! How am I grieved* to find this trial so severe* upon me. intenţie to bear (bore. […] Forgive. will ye* not in some 202 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but it has crept*. I beseech* you. This was a good fortune. can be. I am quite overcome*. before. a se pune pe lucru to bake a coace strangely hard neobişnuit de tare end ţel. neutru to surmount to overcome (a birui. plin de viaţă) height culme. to my grief*. a depăşi) TEXT 5. and so it is: but love. born) a rezista. has greatly affected me. and of so much honour too. and before I knew what was the matter.
Yet. sever grief durere. for there it is never properly introduced. for giving up so weakly. a comic romance* is a comic epic poem* in prose. perfidious traitor*! deservest* thou to smart. în consecinţă to tear (tore. însemnare TEXT 5. torn) out a smulge. so in the other they are light* and ridiculous: it differs in its characters by introducing persons of inferior rank. and when likewise* thou hadst* so well maintained thy post* against the most violent and avowed*. as the serious epic from tragedy: its action being more extended and comprehensive*. burlesque itself may be sometimes admitted. 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. mâhnit severe trial încercare grea unguarded imprudent tender years vârstă fragedă ye you (pl. a înştiinţa mischief neajuns. It differs from the serious romance in its fable* and action. a se furişa to beseech (besought) a ruga cu stăruinţă. of inferior manners. mâhnire partial to având o slăbiciune pentru nay (literary) ba mai mult. differing from comedy. întristat. mai mult chiar to overcome a depăşi. containing a much larger circle of incidents. I could have no notion of what it was to be so affected! But prayer. we have carefully excluded it from our sentiments and characters.e.5. I think. whereas the grave romance sets the highest* before us: lastly. a copleşi to be sure cu siguranţă to own a mărturisi presumption cutezanţă. nechibzuit thyself yourself thy poor mistress biata ta stăpână (not) in the least câtuşi de puţin. îndrăzneală crept to creep (crept): a se strecura. unless* in writings of the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 203 .) treacherous trădător (adj. I hope. in its sentiments and diction*. a implora grieved amărât. without ever consulting thy poor mistress* in the least*! But thy punishment will be the first and the greatest: and well. I must either not show you this confession of my weakness. [Memorandum*. avertizare likewise de asemenea hadst (you) had thou hadst so well maintained thy post you put up resistance successfully avowed făţiş therefore aşadar. Henry Fielding. nicidecum traitor trădător (noun) deservest well …deservest thou to smart: you [i. only dangerous attacks! After all.] plot uneltire. In the diction. will enable me to get over this heavy trial. and to one too. thy whole self. and therefore*. when I get home. But though we have sometimes admitted this in our diction. Joseph Andrews (Preface) Now. and introducing a greater variety of characters. intrigă plainly în mod deschis. a rupe memorandum notă. to consider of this.my heart] fully deserve to suffer summons chemare. as I thought. and resignation to the Divine Will. in this. before summons* came. or tear* it out of my writing. O my treacherous*. of which many instances will occur in these works […].) couldst thou could you serve how couldst thou serve me thus? Cum ai putut să te porţi astfel? notice to give notice: a preveni. necaz wert were inconsiderately (în mod) nesocotit. who had used me so hardly. by preserving the ludicrous* instead of the sublime. and the benefits of your good lesson and examples. and consequently. în mod clar rigorous aspru.Reader measure excuse me? I never before knew. that as in the one these are grave and solemn.
204 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . arises from the surprising absurdity. vanity or hypocrisy: for as vanity puts us on affecting false characters*. It may be likewise noted. so they are as clearly distinct in their operations: for indeed. not men. or hath not the virtue he affects. for to discover any one to be the exact reverse of what he affects. Burlesque is in writing. any liberty which the painter hath* taken with the features of that alma mater*. and in the same manner the comic writer and painter correlate to each other. From the discovery of this affectation arises the Ridiculous. who is the very reverse of what he would seem to be. what Caricatura is in painting. […] The only source of the true Ridiculous (as it appears to me) is affectation. it be nearly allied to deceit*. in so much that a judicious eye instantly rejects anything outré*. no two species of writing can differ more widely than the comic and the burlesque. and that in a higher and stronger degree when the affectation arises from hypocrisy. […] Now. which this is not intended to be. yet it sits less awkwardly* on him than on the avaricious man. so in the former we should ever confine* ourselves strictly to nature. And here I shall observe. yet. by concealing* our vices under an appearance of their opposite virtues. from the just* imitation of which will flow all the pleasure we can this way convey to a sensible* reader. is more surprising. and where our delight. that. to the degree he would be thought to have it. And though these two causes are often confounded (for there is some difficulty in distinguishing them). for the Monstrous is much easier to paint than describe. affectation proceeds from one of these two causes. that affectation doth* not imply an absolute negation of those qualities which are affected. than to find him a little deficient in the quality he desires the reputation of. as in the former the painter seems to have the advantage. yet when it comes from vanity only. with those performances which the Italians call Caricatura. Indeed. for though the vain man is not what he would appear. as it hath not that violent repugnancy* of nature to struggle with. therefore. whereas in the Caricatura we allow all licence* – its aim is to exhibit monsters. […] Let us examine the works of a comic history painter. Now. for as the latter is ever* the exhibition* of what is monstrous and unnatural. in order to purchase* applause. which always strikes* the reader with surprise and pleasure. than when from vanity. and consequently more ridiculous. it partakes* of the nature of ostentation: for instance.Reader burlesque kind. and all distortions and exaggerations whatever are within its proper province*. when it proceeds from hypocrisy. or e converso*. and. the affectation of liberality* in a vain* man differs visibly from the same affectation in the avaricious. though. as they proceed* from very different motives. as in appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest*. so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure*. if we examine it. which that of the hypocrite hath. the affectation which arises from vanity is nearer to truth than the other. so it is in the latter infinitely on the side of the writer. where we shall find the true excellence of the former to consist in the exactest copying of nature. and the Ridiculous to describe than paint.
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.Reader […] Much less are natural imperfections the objects of derision. 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. / Ci de-a nu fi ceea ce vrea să pară. tend* only to raise our mirth*. which at first moved our compassion. fig. The poet carries this very far: None are for being what they are in fault.: the primary source licence liberty province domeniu.” Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 205 . of our pity. it sits less awkwardly on him than: îi şade mai puţin rău decât strikes the reader with surprise and pleasure îi oferă cititorului plăcerea surprizei applause when ugliness aims at the applause of beauty: când urâtul/urâţenia aspiră la aplauzele meritate de frumuseţe lameness şchiopătare. exact sensible endowed with common sense (cu judecată. contradiction doth does deceit înşelătorie it partakes of se înrudeşte cu. dărnicie) vain vanitos awkwardly stângaci. putting on a flattering mask to purchase to obtain censure so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure tot astfel ipocrizia ne îndeamnă/ne face să ne străduim a evita critica to conceal to hide to proceed from to come/to emerge from repugnancy incompatibility. but affectation appears to me the only true source of the Ridiculous. cu stângăcie. but when ugliness aims at the applause* of beauty. comic romance roman comic comic epic poem poem eroicomic comprehensive cuprinzător fable subiect. smaller faults. it is then that these unfortunate circumstances. cu bun simţ) outré (French) exaggerated hath has alma mater (Latin) the nourishing mother. sferă affecting false characters pretending to be in a way that one is not. or lameness* endeavours to display* agility. […] Great vices are the proper objects of our detestation. face parte din liberality generosity (mărinimie. But for not being what they would be thought*.
[…] 206 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . – not but the planet is well enough*. Laurence Sterne.6. or in any of the planets […] than in this vile*. 1718 […] was I Tristram Shandy. a izbuti. nefericit TEXT 5. and it is progressive too. but because it is an excellence seldom* looked for. or expected indeed. a asalta pitiful jalnic misadventure nenorocire cross potrivnic.Reader TEXT 5. and though I will not wrong her by saying she has ever made me feel the weight* of any great or signal* evil. Chapter XXII) For in this long digression which I was accidentally led into. yet with all the good temper* in the world I affirm it of her that in every stage of my life. 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. brought forth born scurvy păcătos. two contrary motions are introduced into it. as in my all digressions (one only excepted) there is a master-stroke* of digressive skill. Tristram Shandy (Vol. dirty planet of ours.7.I. I take to be made up of the shreds* and clippings* of the rest. abject vile ticălos with reverence be it spoken fie spus cu tot respectul shreds zdrenţe clippings resturi. as far and as often too as any writer in Great-Britain. răspundere publică employment slujbă sport jucărie weight greutate. as you observe. Gentleman. which. the ungracious* Duchess has pelted* me with a set of as pitiful* misadventures* and cross* accidents as ever small HERO sustained. – and at the same time. […] The machinery* of my work is of a species by itself. and at every turn* and corner where she could get* fairly at me. with reverence be it spoken*. – and it is this: That though my digressions are all fair*. the merit of which has all along. I fear. or could any how contrive* to be called up to public charges* and employments* of dignity or power – but that is not my case […]. lipsit de cordialitate/amabilitate to pelt a bombarda. I wish I had been born in the Moon. on my conscience. Chapter V) On the fifth day of November. a reuşi public charges însărcinare. remarcabil good temper voie bună turn cotitură to get at (somebody) to irritate. 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. which were thought to be at variance* with each other. that my main business does not stand still in my absence. not for want of penetration* in him. to annoy ungracious răutăcios. yet I constantly take care to order affairs so. my work is digressive. brought forth* into this scurvy* and disastrous world of ours. and that I fly off* from what I am about. In a word. povară signal însemnat. provided a man could be born in it to a great title* or to a great estate*. Tristram Shandy (Vol I. in a digression. Laurence Sterne. and reconciled. been overlooked* by my reader.
what’s more. he steps forth* like a bridegroom*. from that moment. if it pleases the fountain of health to bless me so long with life and good spirits*. and forbids the appetite to fail. cum trebuie. I have constructed the main work and the adventitious* parts of it with such intersections. so as to be not only for the advantage of the reader. bidden) a ura all hail trăiască!. a încâlci one wheel within another cu rotiţele îmbucându-se una întralta good spirits voie bună Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 207 . but also of the author. is truly pitiable*: For. artă culinară distress stare jalnică pitiable vrednic de milă to stand stock-still a încremeni. then there is an end of his digression. whose distress*. and if he goes on with his main work. in general. master-stroke mişcare măiestrită skill meşteşug to overlook a-i scăpa. has been kept agoing. in this matter. – one cold eternal winter would reign* in every page of it. brings in variety. his whole work stands stock-still*. – take them out of this book for instance. This is vile work*. it shall be kept a-going these forty years. All the dexterity* is in the good cookery* and management of them. sadea to fly off a-şi lua zborul machinery mecanism at variance potrivnic. slavă! dexterity îndemânare cookery gătit.Reader Digressions. a sta pe loc vile work ticăloasă treabă adventitious întâmplător to involve a încurca. – and. For which reason. you might as well take the book along with them. if he begins a digression. I observe. that the whole machine. restore them to the writer. are the sunshine. and have so complicated and involved* the digressive and progressive movements. from the beginning of this. you see. one wheel within another*. the soul of reading. a trece cu vederea for want of penetration din pricina lipsei de pătrundere/înţelegere seldom arareori fair fără cusur. bids* All hail*. – they are the life. incontestably. în contradicţie to reign a domni to step forth a păşi bridegroom mire to bid (bade.
Reader UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY TEXT 6. nor wished to change his place. More skilled to raise the wretched* than to rise. a linguşi) fashioned potrivit. If peace be his – that drooping* weary* sire*. The Deserted Village A man he was. that offspring* round their feeble* fire. a boy. he climbed the loftiest bough*. Far other aims his heart had learned to prize*. 208 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . croit to prize a preţui. but relieved* their pain: The long-remembered beggar was his guest. George Crabbe. Remote* from towns he ran his godly* race. devout (evlavios. distant godly pious. Or hers. whose age Can with no cares except his own engage. cerşetor train alai.2. propped* on that rude* staff*. look within. cucernic) e’er ever to fawn to seek attention and admiration by flattering (a se ploconi. Go! if the peaceful cot* your praises share. a mângâia) TEXT 6. a alina. fiind considerat bogat pound liră remote far away. Unpracticed he to fawn*. He chid* their wanderings*. whose trembling hand Turns on the wretched* hearth* the expiring* brand*! (…) (…) yonder* see that hoary swain*. to scold (a dojeni. Oliver Goldsmith. And passing rich* with forty pounds* a year. looks up to see The bare arms* broken from the withering* tree On which. modelat. The Village Ye* gentle* souls who dream of rural ease*. hoinar. cortegiu şir chid to chide. His house was known to all the vagrant* train*. Or theirs. and ask if peace be there.1. Nor e’er* had changed. Then his first joy. the matron* pale. a mustra) wandering rătăcire to relieve to bring alleviation (a uşura. to all the country dear. a aprecia the wretched cei sărmani/nenorociţi vagrant vagabond. or seek for power. Whose beard descending swept his aged breast. chid: to rebuke. Go. By doctrines fashioned* to the varying hour. Who. passing rich trecând drept bogat. but his sad emblem now. Whom the smooth* stream and smoother sonnet please.
The Task (1785) God made the country. the large ambitious wish To make them blest.4. What wonder then that health and virtue. generos ease tihnă. sorbitură grove crâng. Inflames imagination. James Thomson. sprijinit. nenorocit hearth vatră. the noble scorn* Of tyrant pride*. The Seasons (from Autumn) He comes! he comes! in every breeze the Power Of Philosophic Melancholy comes! (…) O’er* all the soul his sacred influence breathes. and far Beyond dim earth exalts* the swelling* thought. Of human race. whom the heart feels as a family TEXT 6. raised To rapture* and divine astonishment. pace smooth calm. încovoiat weary exhausted (istovit) sire (poetic) tată. coarse. The love of Nature. to stimulate. With all the social offspring of the heart*. gifts That can alone make sweet the bitter draught* That life holds to all. ales. unconfined*. părinte offspring vlăstar. urmaş feeble plăpând. to excite swelling expanding rapture ecstasy. the sigh for suffering worth* Lost in obscurity. (…) As fast the correspondent passions rise. (…) The sympathies of love and friendship dear. and. through the breast Infuses every tenderness. jalnic. and as high: Devotion. to elevate.3. should most abound And least be threatened in the fields and groves*? draught înghiţitură.Reader ye you (pl. ecstatic joy unconfined unlimited chief most important suffering worth men of merit and virtue who suffer scorn contempt. losing vitality (care se usucă) loftiest bough ramura cea mai înaltă TEXT 6. and man made the town.) gentle nobil. rezemat rude rudimentary. simple. disdain (dispreţ) tyrant pride the arrogance of arbitrary or unjust power the social offspring of the heart the community. o’er over to exalt to raise. As varied. cămin expiring dying (care se stinge) brand tăciune yonder (poetic) there hoary swain săteanul cărunt/nins/venerabil propped proptit. liniştit cot căsuţă drooping aplecat. dumbravă Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 209 . linişte. slab matron mamă de familie wretched biet. chief*. lacking adornments staff toiag bare arms ramurile/crengile desfrunzite withering decaying. William Cowper.
We are called by his name. a închide weary tired. Little Lamb. bound: a lega strâns. Making all the vales rejoice*! Little Lamb. Striving against my swaddling bands*. wooly* bright. By the stream and o’er* the mead*.The Lamb (from Songs of Innocence) Little Lamb who made thee*? Dost thou know* who made thee? Gave thee life. leapt: a sări. and he is mild*. and bid thee feed*. Bound* and weary*. Helpless. naked. a suspina wept to weep (wept): a plânge leapt to leap. He became a little child: I a child and thou a lamb. a ţâşni. my father wept*. William Blake. Little Lamb. Gave thee clothing of delight. to groan a geme. supus) mild gentle. Little Lamb. Softest clothing. piping* loud. a înlănţui. a fi supărat/îmbufnat 210 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . William Blake. Gave thee such a tender voice. not violent (blajin. I’ll tell thee. exhausted to sulk to be silent and resentful a se bosumfla. who made thee who made you dost thou know do you know bid thee feed ţi-a oferit hrană. Struggling in my father’s hands. God bless thee. Infant Sorrow (from Songs of Experience) My mother groaned*. who made thee? Dost thou know who made thee? Little Lamb. cuminte. God bless thee.5. gentle and uncomplaining (blând. For he calls himself a Lamb: He is meek*. I thought best To sulk* upon my mother’s breast. îngăduitor) TEXT 6. luncă) wooly made of or feeling like wool (lânos) to rejoice to feel or show great joy thy your meek very quiet. Into the dangerous world I leapt*. Like a fiend* hid* in a cloud. I’ll tell thee: He is called by thy* name. a se arunca piping to pipe: to utter something in a high and thin voice fiend demon hid hidden swaddling bands scutece bound to bind.6.Reader TEXT 6. te-a poftit să te hrăneşti o’er over mead meadow (pajişte.
iarbă neagră) TEXT 6. And tomb-stones* where flowers should be. That so many sweet flowers bore*. no. And we cannot go to sleep. robă walking their rounds făcându-şi rondul binding to bind. And ‘Thou shalt not’* writ* over the door.8. at ease dew rouă let us away să megrem to fade away to die. a ţopăi to echo a răsuna Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 211 . William Blake.” The little ones leaped* and shouted and laughed And all the hills echoed*.Reader TEXT 6. for it is yet day.7. tranquil. the sun is gone down. And laughing is heard on the hill. in the sky the little birds fly.” “No. Come. a sălta. And Priests in black gowns* were walking their rounds*. And binding* with briars* my joys and desires. My heart is at rest* within my breast. So I turned to the Garden of Love. And the dews* of night arise. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Innocence) When the voices of children are heard on the green*. Besides. William Blake. and let us away* Till the morning appears in the skies. to disappear to leap (leaped/leapt) a sări. And the gates of the Chapel were shut. green pajişte verde at rest calm. Where I used to play on the green.” “Well. “Then come home my children. And saw what I never had seen: A Chapel was built in the midst*. midst middle ‘Thou shalt not’ ‘You shall not’ (the interdictory formula beginning the ten commandments in the Bible) writ written bore to bear. come leave off play. bound: to tie briar a wild bush with branches that have thorns (măceş. And then go home to bed. bore. go and play till the light fades away*. And every thing else is still. borne: to give birth to grave mormânt tomb-stone piatră funerară gown mantie. The Garden of Love (from Songs of Experience) I went to the Garden of Love. well. let us play. And I saw it was filled with graves*. And the hills are all covered with sheep.
And the dews of night arise. they run. Tom. weep. 212 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Then down a green plain leaping. weep!” So your chimneys I sweep. if he'd be a good boy. Though the morning was cold. Joe. weep. And by* came an Angel who had a bright key. And he opened the coffins and set them all free. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Experience) When the voices of children are heard on the green And whisperings* are in the dale*. laughing. and sport* in the wind. As Tom was a-sleeping. all their bags left behind.10. foşnet. never mind it. Ned and Jack. Were all of them locked up in coffins* of black. whisperings şoapte. and in soot* I sleep. And the Angel told Tom. William Blake. Tom was happy and warm. they need not fear harm.” And so he was quiet. And got with our bags and our brushes to work. There’s little Tom Dacre. vâlcea my face turns green as in “green with envy” to waste a pierde. my children. So if all do their duty. who cried when his head That curled* like a lamb’s back. Then come home. Dick. And so Tom awoke. They rise upon clouds. Then naked and white. You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair. the sun is gone down. he had such a sight*!– That thousands of sweepers.9. And wash in a river. He'd have God for his father and never want* joy. was shaved: so I said “Hush*. The Chimney Sweeper* (from Songs of Innocence) When my mother died I was very young. freamăt dale vale. and shine in the Sun. Your spring and your day are wasted* in play. for when your head's bare. My face turns green* and pale.Reader TEXT 6. The days of my youth rise fresh in my mind. and we rose* in the dark. and that very night. a irosi TEXT 6. And my father sold* me while yet my tongue Could scarcely cry “weep*. William Blake. And your winter and night in disguise.
Then cherish* pity. these flowers of London town! Seated* in companies they sit with radiance* all their own*.11. potoleşte-te. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 213 . They think they have done me no injury*. Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands. it is ironic that “sweep” becomes “weep” (a plânge) soot funingine to curl a se încreţi/cârlionţa hush taci. Grey-headed beadles* walked before. with wands* as white as snow. They clothed me in the clothes of death. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Innocence) ‘Twas* on a Holy Thursday*. And smiled among the winter’s snow. O what a multitude they seemed. And taught me to sing the notes of woe. wise guardians of the poor. William Blake. fii liniştit sight vision coffin sicriu. William Blake. lest* you drive* an angel from your door. în preajmă to sport a zburda. a se juca to want to feel the need or longing for something. Till into the high dome* of Paul’s* they like Thames’ waters flow. 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). Beneath them sit the aged men. their innocent faces clean. Now like a mighty* wind they raise to heaven the voice of song. Or like harmonious thunderings* the seats* of heaven among.” weep see explanation above woe intense grief/sorrow/unhappiness thy your say? ia spune! heath câmpie stearpă injury rău. but multitudes of lambs. Because I was happy upon the heath*. The hum* of multitudes was there. nedreptate misery intense unhappiness or suffering TEXT 6. And because I am happy and dance and sing. to be lacking something rose to rise (rose. hornar sold to sell. Crying “weep*.Reader chimney sweeper coşar. The Chimney Sweeper (from Songs of Experience) A little black thing among the snow. The children walking two and two in red and blue and green. risen): a se scula. coşciug by aproape. Who make up a Heaven of our misery*. And are gone to praise God and his Priest and King. a se deştepta TEXT 6. weep!” in notes of woe*! “Where are thy* father and mother? say*?” “They are both gone up to church to pray.12. alături.
a goni TEXT 6.13. 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.Reader ‘twas it was th Holy Thursday Ascension Day. re-built th in the late 17 century. In a rich and fruitful* land Babes reduced to misery. And their fields are bleak* and bare*. lugubru bare gol. roditor fed to feed (fed): a hrăni usurous cămătăresc (see again the Glossary) bleak sterp. a monument of baroque architecture seated aşezaţi radiance great happiness that shows in someone’s face. And their ways are filled with thorns*. who helped the priest in various ways. William Blake. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Experience) Is this a holy thing to see. the 40 day after Easter. soft. neroditor thorn spin. 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. rece. Babe can never hunger there. when the ascension of Christ to heaven is celebrated beadle an officer in British churches in the past. And where-e’er the rain does fall. ghimpe where-e’er wherever to appal to make someone feel shocked and upset (a îngrozi) 214 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . It is eternal winter there. and to the Last Judgement. Nor poverty the mind appal*. sterp. ca nu cumva to drive (from) a alunga. in the Revelation) to cherish to treasure something (a preţui. a iubi) lest ca să nu. especially by keeping order wand baghetă dome hemispherical roof St Paul’s Cathedral the largest cathedral in London. fertil. fruitful fecund. For where-e’er* the sun does shine.
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