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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
3. 3. 3. 4. 188.8.131.52.1. 3. 4.3. 184.108.40.206.5.8. 4.2. 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.1. 3. 3.1.1. 4. 220.127.116.11. 3.2. The Works of John Milton Unit objectives Milton.1.3.4.Contents 18.104.22.168.1.5.2. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 4 4.5. 2.3. 3.3. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 22.214.171.124.2.2.2. 3. 2.4.4. 2. the Christian humanist Milton’s early poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso Lycidas – a pastoral elegy Milton’s sonnets Sonnet VII Sonnet XVII Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Raphael’s warning to Adam The creation of the world The seduction of Eve The world after the Fall The heroes of Paradise Lost Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell Satan. 4.5. 2. 3. 3. 126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52. 3. 3. 3.6.5. 3.4.3. 184.108.40.206. 3. 4.2.2. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.3.1.3. 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 3.2.4.
4. 5.1. 4. 5. 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 5.3.2. 220.127.116.11.18.104.22.168. 5. 5.6.4. 22.214.171.124. 5. 5. 126.96.36.199.5.4. 188.8.131.52.4.Contents 4.4.1. or Virtue Rewarded Social hierarchy and the individual self Psychological realism and the epistolary technique Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The novel as comic romance The character of parson Adams Fielding’s conception of character in Joseph Andrews Fielding’s Augustanism Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The “Shandean” view of writing The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions Tristram Shandy as metafiction Summary Key words Glossary Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 5. 5. 5. 4. 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.7.4. 5.3. 5.4.2. 5. 5.1.2. “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.2. 5. 4.3. 4.2.6. 184.108.40.206.4. 4.3.4. 5.2. 4.2. 5. 220.127.116.11.3. 18.104.22.168. Gulliver.4. 5. 5.1.5. 5.5. 4.3.4. 5.1. The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Unit objectives Background and main concerns Novel and romance in the 18th century Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Typology of the novel in the 18th century Daniel Defoe and Samuel Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Interpretations of Robinson Crusoe Defoe’s style Samuel Richardson’s contribution to the development of the novel The plot of Pamela.3.1. 22.214.171.124.4.3. 126.96.36.199.6.2.2.
6. 6. 2 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 144 145 146 148 149 150 150 151 151 153 153 154 154 155 156 158 158 159 161 161 162 163 166 166 167 168 170 171 171 173 173 174 176 177 216 6 188.8.131.52.2. 6.4. 6. 184.108.40.206.220.127.116.11.3. 3 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading Reader in seventeenth and eighteenth century literature Selected bibliography iv Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 6.2.3. 6. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake. 6.4.4. The Seasons William Cowper. 6. 6. 18.104.22.168. 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. 6. 6. 6. 6.3.2.Contents Gallery of personalities SAA No.7.5. 6.2.1. 6.6.3. 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. 22.214.171.124.1.1. 6.2.2.
the study of the present course will more efficiently contribute to your professional becoming. Defoe. such as was presented in your Cultural Studies course. among others). It also aims at developing your “reading competence. 3. this course will give you a minimum of contextual detail. Being concerned with aspects of literary history. You will be able to build a general picture of the main literary achievements of this period.Introduction INTRODUCTION 1. Swift. 2. Milton. In this way. and on certain texts – will hopefully help you to overcome the relatively great temporal and cultural distance separating us from those centuries. and will highlight the contributions of their most representative literary personalities. a carrier of values. The double focus of the course – on general aspects of a particular period or doctrine. this course aims at enlarging your understanding of British culture and civilisation. What this course is about This course is a brief introduction to English literature in the 17th and 18th centuries. and to the enrichment of your grasp of the English language. How this course can help you The study of this course will widen your perspective on English literature and its evolution.” at helping you refine your perception of literary phenomena and categories. and an “agent” in the cultural dynamics in a country. You must bear in mind that the teaching of a foreign language does not presuppose only a good command of its grammatical structures and vocabulary. It will familiarise you with the defining features of the literary trends and doctrines of these two centuries. Fielding. Literature is always an important testimony to the evolution of this spirit. it would be helpful if you refreshed your acquaintance with the basic historical and cultural framework of the 17th and 18th centuries. but also to examine more closely particular texts by the most important authors (Shakespeare. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 1 . You are expected and urged to bring to the understanding of this extended literary period the knowledge acquired in your previous study. Course objectives As already mentioned. but also an intimate acquaintance with the spirit of that culture and civilisation. It will thus contribute to the consolidation of your knowledge and understanding of British culture and civilisation. by encouraging your response to particular texts. Before starting your study. Blake.
The solutions and suggestions for SAQs are provided in a separate section. • 4. a list of key words.lIntroduction This complex aim presupposes your development of certain specific competences. as part of your overall assessment. Course content and structure This course is structured in six units of study.g. thematic and formal structure in the works of various authors. 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. you should therefore be able to: define the distinctive features. a Glossary. 2 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .g. Some of the units also contain an assignment that you have to do and send to your tutor. identify the features of the baroque sensibility in Shakespeare’s tragedies. 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. or establish what links Fielding’s novels to literary Neoclassicism. is structured around a series of tasks that you must accomplish – the self-assessing questions (the SAQs). preRomanticism) • identify such features in the work of a particular author or in a particular text (e. in its turn. and a Gallery of personalities. the Augustan Age. Besides them. Each unit. or what makes Blake a Romantic poet) • identify. characterisation. a unit contains a series of “auxiliary” sections: a Summary. in a given text. the characteristic attitudes and concerns of such cultural-historical-literary movements or periods as the Renaissance. By the end of your study of this course. Neoclassicism. forming a chronological survey of the major literary developments in the 17th and 18th centuries. the Baroque. the Restoration.
and insists on William Blake as both a pre-Romantic and Romantic poet. Richardson. The most common SAQs in this course will require you to: Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 3 . the periodical essay of the 18th century as an important contribution to Augustan literature.1. The variety of these learning tasks will. Fielding and L. but also to your independent thinking and to your imagination. and with the evolution of this genre. The self-assessment questions (SAQs) The self-assessment questions in each unit have the role of helping you to structure and organise your study. with an emphasis on the evolution of genres and styles and their main representatives.2. with main focus on Jonathan Swift. and to draw your own conclusions. They appeal not only to your memory. and Augustan satire. • Unit 3 (The works of John Milton) emphasises Milton’s Christian humanism. You will get acquainted with the contributions of four major novelists – D. Sterne –. 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. S. These tasks will guide you in the process of ordering your knowledge.Introduction 4. The SAQs encourage you to see your course work as more than a simple effort of memory (although the importance of memory in the process of learning must not be underrated). The main focus in this unit is on the imaginative structure and thematic interest of Milton’s masterpiece. • 4. • Unit 4 (The Restoration and the Augustan Age) deals with four major aspects: the comedy of manners during the age of the Restoration. 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. The major authors considered in this unit are Shakespeare and the poets John Donne and Andrew Marvell. engage you actively and in diverse ways in the process of study. • 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. H. and they will enable you to work with it in a specific context. Defoe. The unit surveys characteristic preRomantic themes and motifs. as well as major representatives. • Unit 2 (The late Renaissance and the Baroque) deals with the emergence of the baroque sensibility in English late Renaissance literature. the epic poem Paradise Lost.
after you have identified them in/after a provided short description • match a given literary fragment with a given paraphrase. Do not get discouraged if some of your answers should not come near the suggestions offered at the end. and.3. You are required to solve these SAQs in the blank spaces provided for each of them in textboxes. fragment) • complete sentences. match incomplete statements so as to reconstruct an idea or a description • identify true/false sentences. so as to obtain synthetic reformulations or rephrasings of relevant details about a literary period. symbolic elements.lIntroduction answer questions about the theme. 4 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the title of a work. and you are advised to read those instructions carefully and to follow them. Solutions and suggestions for SAQs You can check your answers to each SAQ by going to this section. • paraphrase a given fragment from a studied literary work. A line in your textboxes is estimated to contain ten words on the average. summarise its argument. etc. in the literary text you were asked to work on. narrative technique. stylistic features. state its theme • comment on / interpret a given fragment. You are given detailed instructions about what is expected from you. with the typological definition of a work. • A self-assessed question (SAQ) is signalled in the course text by this icon accompanying a textbox. of a certain work or a provided fragment • explain the relevance or significance of a certain item (phrase. etc. at the end of the unit. 4. the independent intellectual effort that you are encouraged to put into your learning. You are strongly advised to resist the temptation of consulting this section before you have actually tried to do the exercises yourself. Remember that what counts most is the process of thinking that leads you to a particular answer.. an author’s work. Try to analyse your errors and to become aware of everything you have missed in the instructions of the SAQ. line. etc. The estimated length of your answers will be indicated as number of words / number of lines. You are also given instructions about how to proceed if your answers differ significantly from the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs (see below). if the case may be. characterisation. 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.
in order to make sure you remember exactly what a term refers to. which indicates a minimal bibliography for each unit. • Further reading. the Glossaries will send you back to 1. if you wish to supplement or clarify your knowledge • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 5 . other instruments meant to assist your study. The materials indicated in the Further reading section and in the Selective bibliography (see below) offer you supplementary information. For example. Thus.Introduction 4.3. These auxiliary sections are: the Summary and a list of key words. • the Gallery of personalities (in the alphabetical order of the last names). which includes basic information about the life and work of the mentioned personalities. Most of the books included there are available in any University library.4. with the pages where you may find relevant information. will also appear in Units 5 and 6. at the end. not just Being. which will enable you to review and focus your knowledge.1. The terms included in the Glossary are marked by an asterisk (*) in the text of the unit. Sometimes. for the Great Chain of Being*. you will look up the whole phrase in the Glossary. an asterisk must be understood to mark not just the word it is attached to. Some terms may recur in several units. the notion of heroic couplet is explained in subchapter 1. whose Glossaries will send you back to the Glossary in Unit 1. in Unit 1. you will be sometimes returned to the Glossary of a previous unit to reinforce or refresh your understanding of them. You may ask your tutor to help you with the access to those sources. if necessary or desired. which contains titles that should not be very hard to find in libraries.3. to organise it around the most important issues • the Glossary (in alphabetical order). Auxiliary sections Each unit contains.1. when this notion is used again in Units 4 or 6. For instance. but the phrase of which that word is part. • the Selective bibliography at the end of the course. the term Enlightenment. in which terms or phrases that have been considered difficult or unfamiliar to you are explained. You may also be directed back to a certain subchapter in a previous unit. which is explained in the Glossary in Unit 1.
5. Assessment and evaluation Besides the self-assessment questions included in each unit. some of these texts might seem difficult to you. A send-away assignment (SAA) is signalled in the text by the icon accompanying this textbox. As we are dealing with 17th and 18th century literature. SAA no. The cumulated weight of these SAAs in your final grade is 40%. which contains the selection of texts you need in order to accomplish some of the course tasks.2 will cover units 4 and 5. The Reader The course is accompanied by a Reader. In any case. don’t hesitate to use a good dictionary. the number of tasks. As the texts are not very long. this should not take you too much time. The table below represents the place. 5. the course contains three send-away assignments (SAAs). The three SAAs are placed at the end of units 3. before you start solving the task. If you should find these lexical notes insufficient for your understanding of a particular text. try to read each fragment more than once. or misleadingly familiar to you are explained either in English or in Romanian.5. This is why the same word may appear with different explanations/translations in several glossaries. in which the words and phrases supposed to be unknown. and 6. The Reader provides you with little glossaries for each text. 1 will assess your knowledge of units 2 and 3. difficult. The given explanation or translation into Romanian applies only to the respective context. and the weight of each assignment: 6 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . or one word may be given an explanation/translation different from the one you might be familiar with. These first two SAAs will therefore consist in more than one task. while SAA no. and make sure you understand its general meaning or basic ideas.lIntroduction 4. which will enable your tutor to assess your performance in the course work. especially the poetry texts. The written test that you will sit at the end of the semester will add the other 60%.
Note that a typewritten paper is likely to ease your tutor’s work. If your level of proficiency is lower. This is more likely to happen when you are required to work on literary texts. however. at least take care that your handwriting should be fully legible. 2. 6. 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). Your study schedule This course is devised for 42 hours of study. Most of the time. theoretically. whose reading may take you some extra time. make sure you understand what is being asked of you in each assignment. 50% 50% 50% 30% 20% 100% 10% 20% 10% 40% In the assessment of each 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. Plan your study by taking into account that a semester has 14 weeks. and 8 hours to the completion of your SAAs. so pay special attention to the instructions for each task (30%). • the coherence. to go through each unit in approximately 4 hours. 1. If you have no possibility to type your assignment.3 3 5 6 2 3 1 1. half of the answer is already contained in the question. You may.1 SAA no. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 7 . 1. 3. the tutor will take into account: • the degree to which your answer respects the formulated requirement. 6 hours are allotted to your tutorial meetings.2 SAA no.Introduction Unit Number of tasks and their weight in each SAA Weight of each SAA in the final assessment SAA no. clarity. Your ability to identify and use the knowledge required by a particular situation is part of what is assessed in any test. 2. your course work may take you more time. 28 are meant for individual study of the course material (the solving of the SAQs included). As in the case of the SAQs. Of these hours.
3 3 3 8 SAA no. together. of the evolution of literary genres. which you will find in the Reader accompanying the coursebook. 5. according to a pre-established schedule. and gallery of personalities). The course contains several auxiliary sections (summary. while the final written test will represent 60 % in your overall evaluation. Summary This course offers you an overview of the literary periods and trends. which you must write and send to your tutor. forms and styles. representative authors. It is structured in six units of study. list of key words. A provisional study schedule may look like this: Week Unit Number of study hours Assignment Number of hours for the SAAs 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 Introduction Unit 1 Unit 2 Unit 3 Unit 4 Unit 5 Unit 6 Revision 2 4 4 4 4 4 4 2 28 SAA no. a revision of the course material. Many of these SAQs require your response to a literary text. which will help you to organise and focus your knowledge. as well as a list of suggested further reading.lIntroduction The first and the last week should be reserved for the Introduction and. respectively. as 40% of the final grade. 8 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . You have the possibility to monitor your work by verifying your answers. glossary. whose content follows a chronological line. More information about the subjects in each unit is available in the selective bibliography which concludes the coursebook.2 SAA no. as the course provides you with the solutions and suggestions for SAQs at the end of each unit. there are SAAs.1 2 Planning your course work is important as it will enable you to send your assignments to the tutor in due time. and 6. but which also focus on dominant genres and on outstanding. along the 17th and 18th centuries in England. At the end of Units 3. The three assignments will count. Each unit includes a series of self-assessing tasks (SAQs).
4.5.1. 1. 126.96.36.199.188.8.131.52.1.1. 184.108.40.206.3.1. 1. 1.3. 1. 1. 1.3. 1. 1.1. 1.2. 1.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background UNIT 1 THE SEVENTEENTH AND EIGHTEENTH CENTURIES: INTELLECTUAL AND LITERARY BACKGROUND Unit Outline 1 1.5. 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 . 1.2.
colonial expansion and an extraordinary economic development made England. seen as extending up to the Restoration* (1660) were periods of gradual but irreversible changes in modes of thought. Political. which in England is in fact considered to have started in 1688. 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. Culturally the two centuries correspond to two movements whose basic tendency was the emancipation of man: the Renaissance* and the Enlightenment*. philosophy.1. The intellectual scene Along the two centuries. The growing critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture. obscurantism and intolerance.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. The gradual achievement of political stability. 10 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . social and economic life. in the latter part of the 17th century. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. the arts – all fields of human endeavour went through crucial transformations during the 17th century. The completion of this transition was to take place during the next age. a powerful flourishing nation. of the Enlightenment. in which the progress of England to modernity was steady in all fields. The end of “high Renaissance” (the flourishing of the Elizabethan* Age) and the “late Renaissance”. 1. The Renaissance and the Enlightenment The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries constitute a complex period. radical changes occurred in intellectual habits and preoccupations. religion. science. mentalities.1. dramatic and prose genres and their main representatives in their proper literary-historical context within the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries Unit objectives 1. attitudes and practices. as well as the faith in progress. as the Enlightenment is often described. marked the entrance into modernity. nature and divinity during the Age of Reason. at the end of this period. of philosophical empiricism* determined to a great extent the attitudes to man in his relationship to society. The rise.1. literature. the year of the Glorious Revolution*.
The Royal Society endeavoured. This new faith – Deism. in a systematic effort. The moral philosophy of the Deists argued that man was innately good. in particular. the capacity of distinguishing right from wrong. to reconcile Reason and Faith. The scientific discoveries of Sir Isaac Newton*. It was a rational alternative to religious dogmatism.1. that human life be enriched by new discoveries and powers. One of the most ardent promoters of the new scientific spirit was Francis Bacon* (1561-1626).” God was seen as the prime cause of a harmonious universe. Reason and faith in the Age of the Enlightenment The rationalism of the Renaissance and Enlightenment thought determined a reconsideration of the relation between Nature and Divinity and a new vision of the universe. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 11 . under the patronage of Charles II. and it was essentially optimistic. It was a highly intellectualised religious approach. Engaging in a variety of original scientific experiments. manifest in its rationally and experimentally discernible laws. a reaction against mysticism and obscurantism. had important philosophical and theological implications: the universe was now conceived as a perfect mechanism. and which encouraged emotional effusion as a way of achieving communion with God. In his work Novum Organum (1620) he explicitly states that “The true and lawful goal of the sciences is simply this. His well-known maxim “Knowledge is Power” points to the utilitarian conception of the role of science. was an evidence of the creator’s good will.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Francis Bacon It is also during these two centuries that modern science was born. initiated by Isaac Newton and John Locke*. Deists believed that the admirable order of the universe. combined the traditional confidence in the divine infinite wisdom with the intellectual spirit of the age. the “universal Architect. a religious movement which aimed at reviving the Evangelical spirit and the ideal of Christian life. in 1662. or Natural Religion –. which was left to develop by itself on the basis of these perfect laws.” This idea will be echoed several decades later. which could not offer spiritual comfort to the large masses of the poor and uneducated. The optimism of the Deists extended to human nature.” 1. when The Royal Society “for the improving of Natural Knowledge” was founded. endowed with a sixth sense: the moral sense. to “overcome the mysteries of all the works of Nature” and to apply that knowledge “for the benefit of human life. working according to impersonal laws which testified to the supreme intelligence of the Creator. Deism attempted to give a rational foundation to religious thought.2. It was to be counter-balanced by the Evangelical Revival*.
in the latter part of the Age of the Enlightenment. T F 5. the Enlightenment. the central concern of the Enlightenment. to superstition and obscurantism. The development of modern science and the rise of philosophical empiricism are major aspects of the process of intellectual modernisation in England in the 17th and 18th centuries. T F 12 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. 1.1. 1. continued the project of the Renaissance. The poet Alexander Pope indicated. 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. which may be defined as the Age of Sensibility. T F 4. when he declared: ”The proper study of mankind is Man. The Royal Society was an institution concerned with the spreading of Neoclassical principles in art and literature. appropriately. The Enlightenment: an age of progress On the whole.1. The Deist notion of innate virtue came to be connected with man’s capacity for feeling. T F 2. in his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). which made Enlightenment England a model of civilisation for the Western world.3. The growing spirit of individualism. 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.4. 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. for each sentence. It was a general dedication to the cause of progress. The interest in the constitution and workings of the human mind awakened the awareness that man’s response to reality was not only rational. Circle T (true) or F (false). The Deist image of God as the “Universal Architect” reveals a rationalist-mechanicist conception of the universe. 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.” The whole century was preoccupied with the idea of man’s happiness and of the improvement of man’s condition on earth. but also affective and instinctual. Read the statements below and identify the true ones. T F 3. The cult of Reason thus gave way to the cult of Feeling. and which prepared the way for the Romantic Age*. with its belief in the perfectibility of man. The emergence of Deism was a reaction to religious dogmatism. Individual and social good was the object of all endeavours in this age.
An overview of the literary scene in the 17th and 18th centuries From a literary point of view. If you have failed to identify any of the sentences correctly as true or false. the decrease in the power of the Crown.1. The literature of the Renaissance was under the sign of the classical revival*. It is significant.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 6.” T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. with their Literature in the Age of Common Man cultivated taste. the great ages of the Renaissance and of the Enlightenment may be further divided according to various criteria. The abundance of classical Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 13 . You may also need to revise some of the terms explained in the Glossary. that the notion of reading public emerges now. regularity. A new interest in rhetoric animated authors to pursue eloquence by a lavish use of figures of speech and the display of wit*. Alexander Pope pointed out the humanistic orientation of the Enlightenment in his maxim “The proper study of mankind is man. The Age of the Enlightenment excluded completely the interest in human feeling and emotion. in one way or another. T F 7. including readers of more modest education. 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. at the end of the unit. The Court was not only the catalyst of the emerging national feeling. the social diversification and the “unfixing” of the strictly hierarchical order of the Renaissance led gradually towards a “democratisation” of literature. The 18th century is called sometimes The Age of Common Man. in the orbit of the crown. Jacobean* and Caroline* of the “high” and late Renaissance literature points not only to a temporal delimitation. for instance. Numerous treatises on literary art established norms and precepts. with little or no classical knowledge. 1. The absolute authority of the monarch made the Court the Influence of Court centre of intellectual and literary life. to 1.1. and both writers and audiences were. read again subchapters. and the accepted patterns and conventions were touchstones for literary virtuosity and originality. symmetry. T F 8. but also the ultimate arbiter life on literature in matters of literary and artistic fashions. After 1688. and exalted Reason as the only defining human faculty. The Evangelical Revival shared with Deism the attempt to give a rational foundation to religious faith. There was a general care for discipline and refinement in composition. It was the main focus of literary attention.2. but also to the close connection between the dominant literary values of those ages and Court life. The division into Elizabethan. and the literary field was no longer confined to the learned. when the literary audience becomes more diversified.1. for proportion. This is mainly connected with the rise of the middle classes and the growth of their cultural importance.4.
The great French classical authors of the 17th century (Boileau. SAQ 2 Read the partial statements below and match them. when the merits of the “Ancients” and the “Moderns” became the object of comparison. during the Augustan Age*. Molière)…… d. in which the declining phase of the Renaissance was characterised by a return to the classics. a.” started in the late 17th century. …… c. Complete each sentence in the provided space.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. above all. Racine. Pierre Corneille. on the model of the French controversy known as the “Quarrel of the Ancients and the Moderns. Much of Renaissance literature. A significant aspect of Augustan literature is the development and importance of literary criticism. This led to the emergence Neoclassicism* in England. The Court was the main source of influence…… b. the “Sun King” –: Nicolas Boileau. The comparative merit of ancient and modern standards of literary excellence and learning became a central issue of critical debate. Corneille. …the Augustan Age. 2. with its highly conventional forms and rhetorical style. English Neoclassicism must be linked not only to the survival of the Renaissance humanism. a new consciousness of the relationship between literary tradition and modernity. England’s intellectual and literary exchanges with Catholic France had been suspended during the Civil War*. but also to the influence of the French authors of the great classical century – the age of Louis XIV. Molière. The mid-seventeenth century was an age of transition. …on literary taste and fashions during the Renaissance. so as to obtain complete sentences describing aspects of the general literary picture of the 17th and 18th centuries. but they were resumed during the Restoration*. The relationship between tradition and modernity became a matter of literary consciousness during…… 1. 14 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . This reflects. Jean Racine.
A “metaphysical” strain exists in Shakespeare’s final period of creation. Andrew Marvell. or his philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). conveyed by means of a rich variety of rhetorical effects. A remarkable poetic development in the first half of the 17th century was the metaphysical poetry (John Donne. the ode*.2. in a variety of poetical forms: philosophical poems. in its various forms – the song*. concentration. and the Puritan Andrew Marvell must also be included here.g. If you have failed to make the right match. Robert Herrick). The evolution of poetic forms The lyric. The most Renaissance lyric enduring poetic achievements of the early 17th century is the forms sequence of Shakespeare’s Sonnets (1609). The heroic couplet was the perfect verse couplet structure of the Age of Reason. or religion and politics – John Milton. 1. which are illustrative of a pre-Romantic* cross-current. George Herbert. Alexander Pope.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 3. They approached other themes besides love: e. Thomas Carew. tight logical coherence and striking imagery. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The common vehicle for it was the heroic couplet – two rhyming The Augustan heroic lines containing a complete statement. 4. the sonnet* – dominated Renaissance poetry. Its perfect mastery is illustrated by works like Pope’s didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711). the blank verse* – on the model of Milton in his great Blank verse epic* Paradise Lost (1667) – was extensively used in the 18th century. Apart from the classical poetic forms that survived into the Restoration and the Augustan Age. at the end of the unit. religious faith – John Donne. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 15 . James Thomson. 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 appealed both to the intellect and to the emotions. …influenced English literary Neoclassicism. continued to be used throughout the 17th and 18th centuries: John Milton. acquainted with the great classical authors and works. Thomas Gray and William Collins (in the latter). John Dryden (in the former). The chief model for The sonnet sequence Renaissance soneteers was Petrarch* and his love sonnets to Laura. which departed from the artificiality and poetry conventionalism of most Elizabethan poetry. Its name refers to a certain Metaphysical expressive strategy. by the Romantic poets. Other lyric forms endured: the ode. but English poets varied the highly conventional form of this kind of poem. the pastoral* lyric. In parallel. It favoured conciseness. and it made extensive use of wit. or meditative-descriptive poems like James Thomson’s The Seasons (1726-1730) or William Cowper’s The Task (1785). The sonnet fell into disuse during the late Renaissance and it was revived only towards the end of the 18th century. …addressed itself to learned readers. for instance. combining classical restraint with force of argument and expressive clarity.3. you need to revise subchapter 1. original or translated epics.
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).4. comparable perhaps only with the rise of the novel in the next century. and the “poetry of sensibility” which announced the coming of the Romantic Age (Unit 6). SAQ 3 Which are the most popular kinds of poems in the 17th and 18th centuries? Mention at least six of them. the verse satires of Dryden and Pope (Unit 4). a brilliant constellation of playwrights founded a dramatic tradition which represents the best and most original expression of the nation’s creative genius.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Towards the end of the century. through its representation on stage. It was the only form of literature which. The flourishing of English drama during the Renaissance is a unique phenomenon. 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. If there should be major differences between them. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.3. revise subchapter 1. 16 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . together with their most outstanding representatives. in the space left below. at the end of the unit. 1. a new appreciation of older poetic forms. Drama in the 17th and 18th centuries The Renaissance was the Golden Age of English drama. some of them of popular origin (the song. enjoyed a widely popular appeal. In little more than half a century (1580-1642). In the following units of this course.
masque*. Milton’s Satan. insanity. rape. as well as John Webster’s heroine in The White Devil. sometimes he rights the wrong done to another. with his exploration of the darkness of strange passions. the wronged hero plans revenge. each variety of spectator responding to the performance according to his/her education and imagination. the sensational plot. John Ford (‘Tis Pity She’s a Whore. In 1660. daring and wit. fascinating through unbounded ambition. when the Puritans* closed the theatres. while others changed. murder. 1605-6). Of the Caroline playwrights. In such plays. and this “unholy alliance” between crown and stage increased the intransigence of the Puritans. play-houses were reopened. where bloody deeds were only evoked through an efficient rhetoric of the dramatic discourse. From Senecan tragedy. A particular type of protagonist became fashionable in revenge tragedies: the villain. was a miniature of the English society. 1. Jacobean tragedy One of the most widespread forms of tragedy was the revenge tragedy.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Contemporary reconstruction of a Jacobean playhouse The play-house. exploiting excessively morbid ingredients like incest.4. Thomas Middleton (Women Beware Women. drama witnessed a decline. 1612) and especially John Webster (The Duchess of Malfi. to accommodate the tastes of a new public. inspired by the plays of the Roman Stoic Seneca*. The great age of English drama ended abruptly in 1642. They were generally. They saw the theatre as a source of moral corruption through the “idle” pleasure that it offered. 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. with its audience arranged according to rank. historical drama. 1607). pastoral drama. Shakespeare’s Hamlet (1601) is the finest illustration of this kind of tragedy. but destroys himself along with his enemies. and the rhetorical manner. The dramatic genres popular during the Renaissance were extremely diverse: tragedy and comedy with their varieties. 1633). the fundamentally evil hero/heroine. and in the 18th century it was replaced by the novel in popularity. with the restoration of monarchy. tragi-comedy. but the spirit of the great tradition was never recaptured. sensational and macabre. On the whole. Unlike Senecan plays. built around the theme of revenge. 1614). in Paradise Lost. or Vittoria Corombona (1612) are among the most accomplished portrayals of the villain in drama. etc.1. Masters of this genre were the Jacobean dramatists Cyril Tourneur (The Revenger’s Tragedy. Shakespeare’s protagonist in Richard III (1592-3) and Lady Macbeth (Macbeth. treachery. 17 Revenge tragedy The villain in revenge tragedy Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Jacobean and Caroline plays usually represented atrocities on stage. The great acting companies were under the patronage of the king. who usually appears as a ghost on the stage. is the most gifted. Some dramatic forms went out of fashion. Renaissance playwrights borrowed the five-act structure.
T F 5. with its noble characters. or The Silent Woman (1609). circle the appropriate letter: T (true) or F (false). centred on the theme of love.1. T F Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. read again subchapters 1. but. at the end of the unit.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background A distinct type in late Renaissance drama is domestic tragedy. Ben Jonson* illustrates another form. whose fall from eminence marks the destruction of an order. reflecting. Epicoene. His best plays. dealing with middle or lower class life and concentrating on personal and domestic maters – unlike “grand” tragedy. in miniature. identifying the four true ones. his comedies become darker. The hero of revenge tragedy often destroys himself in his desire to right a wrong done to him or to another.2. the hierarchy of English society. Volpone (1606). T F 2.4.4. T F 4. or at least tinged with bitterness. The English play-house during the Renaissance accommodated a diverse audience. For each sentence. a genre which will survive into the 18th century.4. in Paradise Lost. though each in a different way. T F 3. 1. in the last period of creation. and 1. or in Philaster (1609) by John Fletcher and Francis Beaumont. as in All’s Well That Ends Well (1602-3) or Measure for Measure (1604-5). SAQ 4 For a revision of some important features of Renaissance English drama. Shakespeare and Ben Jonson are the great masters. 1. read the following statements. The mixture of serious and comic elements results in tragicomedy. Renaissance tragedy had four acts – a structure borrowed from Seneca. T F 6. 18 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton’s Satan. intended to correct vices and follies by denouncing them. as in Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida (1601-2) or The Winter’s Tale (1610-11). The Alchemist (1610) and Bartholomew Fair (1614) are social comedies of city life. the satirical comedy. reminds of the fascinating villain-heroes of the Renaissance revenge tragedies by his extraordinary ambition and boldness. Shakespeare’s Hamlet is a classic example of domestic tragedy. Shakespeare’s Elizabethan phase included a number of exquisite romantic comedies. Comedy in the early 17th century In the field of comedy. If you have failed to identify the true statements. T F 7. Seneca’s tragedies inspired Jacobean and Caroline authors in the representation of atrocities on stage. The Jacobean and Caroline authors of revenge tragedies had Seneca as their model.
Restoration comedy presented an elegant society. a stylish and sophisticated world. She Stoops to Conquer. Under the influence of French tragedies. 1769). and Richard Brinsely Sheridan (The Rivals. The School for Scandal. Heroic plays. were a passing extravagance. but whose aim was not so much to correct manners as to entertain.g. The best achievement in this genre belongs to John Dryden (The Indian Emperor.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1. The most representative works of this kind belong to Richard Steele (The Conscious Lovers. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 19 . with idealised heroes and heroines divided between love and honour or duty. but it appealed to a wide middle class public.3. 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. Drama during the Restoration period Restoration drama developed in an age of scepticism and cynicism. of pleasure-seeking and relaxation after the strict moral code imposed to the nation by the Puritans. who demanded models of virtue and decency. The Conquest of Granada. George Villiers. but serious drama declined during the 18th century. 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. 1768. satirises heroic tragedy and so does Henry Fielding in his successful parody The Tragedy of Tragedies. with their grandiose declamations and artificial conception of heroism. 1665. This parodic spirit was not confined to drama: the mockheroic style* was also used in poetry (e. It lacked the latter’s liveliness and brilliance. Tragedy was replaced in popular taste by a form that stood in sharp contrast with the unheroic spirit of the age: heroic drama. A more representative achievement of the Restoration is the comedy of manners. The main representatives – the Restoration Wits* – were courtiers and aristocrats who assumed the role of leaders of fashion and taste. and it denounced puritanical virtue as hypocrisy. or The Mistakes of a Night. but also of French and Spanish romantic novels of adventure. too. which continued the realistic spirit of the earlier satirical plays. mocks at certain theatrical conventions. In The Rehearsal (1671). these plays built a world of high passion and incredible bravery. 1722). in his satirical play The Beggar’s Opera (1728). Oliver Goldsmith (The GoodNatured Man. 1775. 1669-70).4. Heroic drama The comedy of manners 1. for instance. 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. There were a few attempts to revive classical tragedy or domestic tragedy. or The Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great (1731). 1773).4. John Gay. which ridiculed them through exaggerated imitation. Richard Cumberland (The Brothers. Alexander Pope) and in the novel (e. 1777). Duke of Buckingham. Henry Fielding).4.g.
20 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .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.2. If there should be major differences between them. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. to 1.4. and in Unit 4 you will be acquainted with more features of Restoration comedy. revise subchapters 1.4. we shall focus on William Shakespeare’s later plays. together with their most outstanding representatives. Two moments in the evolution of English drama will be further detailed in this course: in Unit 2.4.
This allegorical expression of Puritan faith. Varieties of prose writing in the 17th and 18th centuries Of the literary forms that contributed significantly to the development of English prose. as the growing complexity of life increased the need for social and intellectual communication. The Pilgrim’s Progress Among the prose forms widely used for intellectual argument. in political tracts and pamphlets. Here. in which rhetorical figures were subordinated to rational lucidity. The development of an aphoristic style*. on clarity and rationality. wealth and freshness greatly influenced the language of prose. the universal language of the Renaissance. English as an instrument of literary and intellectual communication still competed with classical Latin. 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). he describes the Christian soul’s search for salvation in the form of an allegorical journey along the path of life. Influence of Latin on prose style The prose of intellectual argument 1. Gradually. 1612. religious writings are particularly important. Francis Bacon was the first notable writer to plead for – and to illustrate – a prose style more suited for intellectual argument. Sermons were a widely popular form of prose-writing. prose works written in English displayed a highly rhetorical style. with its illustration to simplicity and natural flow of common speech. the virtues of common speech permeated the language of all kinds of writings. weaknesses. prepared the English language for a variety of uses: in scientific. accomplished under the patronage of James I – established a model of English whose beauty.1.5. John Locke Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 21 . blending concision with wit. 1625) are prose classics in English literature. Later in the century. philosophical and theological writings. The rhetorical extravagance and ingenuity which had still dominated the early 17th century (not only in prose). Francis Bacon’s Essays (1597. Under the influence of Latin – especially of Cicero* –. another Latin influence began to mould English prose style: that of Seneca and Tacitus*. gave way to an ideal of prose style more suited to the Age of Common Man. the essay* proved the most flexible. More and more. with its trials. a precious and highly ornate language. The evolution of prose style At the beginning of the 17th century. contributing essentially to the forging of a more straightforward and simple style.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background 1.5. Thomas Hobbes* and John Locke also insisted on the necessity of a language at once flexible and precise. temptations. suitable for conveying “the knowledge of things” and intelligible to the average Englishman. Journalism as a form of prose writing emerged during the Civil War and flourished during the 18th century. displaying a variety of styles. struggles and William Blake: aspirations. influenced immensely Bunyan’s the language of prose. deliberately artificial and intricate. The language of prose tended to become plain and transparent. The English translation of the Bible – the “Authorised Version” of 1611.
with his Life of John Donne among other works of this kind – 1670). the great literary achievement of the 18th century. exhausting the subjects they dealt with. aphoristic style. delighting in speculation and building the knowledge they explored into an elaborate structure. William Prynne’s Histriomastix. executed in a witty. “The Religion of a Doctor. spiritual biographies (John Bunyan.” 1642) are the most outstanding representatives of this genre. Like drama.g. but its impressive intellectual architecture is achieved in a simple. Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners. with Characters of Virtue and Vices (1608). A variety of other prose genres developed during the 17th century: historical and geographical accounts (Walter Raleigh. 1644 – a famous defense of the freedom of the press). of remarkable precision and force. which anticipates the prose of the Neoclassical period. another form of prose writing which displayed divergent tendencies in style was the anatomy. Samuel Purchas). Human character as portrayed in their essays was at the same time typical and individualised. biographies (Izaak Walton. 22 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Milton’s Areopagitica. etc. The character as a prose genre influenced Richard Steele and Joseph Addison in their periodical essays. To these must be added the character. pamphlets* (e. Robert Burton (The Anatomy of Melancholy. which analyses the constitution of human society. diaries (John Evelyn. 1621) and Sir Thomas Browne (Religio Medici. a prose genre whose model was provided by the Greek writer Theophrastus*. In the 17th century. the spiritual autobiography and the “character” were literary expressions of the growing interest in human individuality. Anatomies were monuments of learning. 1632 – the most virulent Puritan attack on the theatre. Samuel Pepys). unadorned style. letters. “Characters” were miniature portraits of human types. whose purpose was didactic or satirical. with its explorations of the complexities of human mind and character. Joseph Hall inaugurated the English tradition of this genre. the biography as an emerging prose genre.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. inclusive character is displayed by Thomas Hobbes’s Leviathan (1651). The same encyclopaedic. in An Essay Concerning Human Understanding (1690). 1666). This kind of approach had a considerable influence on the realistic novel.
5. the progress from the old order of the feudal world to the modern age was completed. Within these two centuries. these two centuries correspond. marked the entrance into Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 23 .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. modern science was born. in a paragraph of no more than 7 lines / 70 words. Culturally. and 1. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. The following units will detail some aspects concerning the development of prose in the two centuries: in Unit 4. since both place Man and the improvement of his condition at the centre of their concerns.1. read again subchapters 1. the image of the universe was changed. you will learn more about the periodical essay. more carefully. to the great movements of the Renaissance and the Enlightenment. intellectual habits and preoccupations changed radically: philosophic thought became secular. A steady process of economic development and imperial expansion made England the world’s greatest power. Within these two centuries. between which there is continuity. the growing scepticism and critical spirit enthroned a rationalistic attitude in all spheres of culture.5. as well as the faith in progress. The victory of Reason over dogmatism. obscurantism and intolerance. If there should be major differences between them. This was a period of great changes at all levels of life in England. roughly.. Summary This unit has offered you a brief introduction to the intellectual and literary developments of the 17th and 18th centuries. while Unit 5 will deal entirely with the novel in the 18th century. at the end of the unit.
” The short review of the dominant forms of poetry. and the emergence of the Age of Feeling prepared the way to the Romantic sensibility. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 24 . of the time of emperor Caesar Augustus (27 B. It is. Virgil – were revered models for the English Augustan writers.D. in a caricatural spirit. The birth of the novel is the most significant literary development of this “Age of Common Man. Ovid. noble and heroic characters. with new genres accessible to a more inclusive reading public.C. 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. The Great Latin writers of that age – Horace. 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. however. blank verse: unrhymed verse. 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.-14 A. often by means of paradox. elevated style. part of the process of modernisation that the Age of Reason came to acknowledge its own limits. and a major influence on their aesthetic ideal.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background modernity.). predominantly middle-class. burlesque: the exaggerated imitation. of serious action. a slow transition took place. from a system of genres and styles dominated by classical influences to a more “democratic” tendency. which are reduced to the comically trivial. used to express observations of general truth. From a literary point of view.
which began as an educational programme (the humanities – humaniora) propagating those values in Greek and Latin culture which could be harmonised with Christian values.e. anti-obscurantism. it evokes an attitude to life which stresses the individual’s dignity. This return to the Ancients is the foundation of Renaissance humanism. by the promotion of intellectual emancipation and the belief in social and moral progress. Concepts like human rights. Montesquieu. anti-fanaticism. natural law. and by the search for a model of society in which man’s rights and duties should be exercised in freedom. rejection of arbitrary authority and of absolutism are some of the characteristic attitudes of this age. the conviction that reality is ordered according to laws that are accessible to human reason). Diderot (France). David Hume (Britain). In a broader sense. in which personal opinions and observations are presented in a formal or informal manner. Tolerance.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. humanism. when it was restored. • epic: long narrative poem celebrating the achievements of heroic personages. The open conflict between king and Parliament set the whole nation to war. The founder of the revival of classical learning was Petrarch (see note below). state church) as a reaction against the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 25 • . widely used in all ages. • empiricism: a philosophical orientation which established the primacy of experience in the process of knowledge. • Elizabethan: related to the reign of Elizabeth I (1558-1603). Voltaire. The victory of the Parliamentary forces led to the abolition of monarchy in 1649. artistic and literary life of the Renaissance was defined by a revived interest in the classical culture and its ideals. • essay: a prose composition of varying length. reconciling a materialist account of reality with a rationalist attitude (i. The subjects and heroes are taken either from myth. until 1660. • Enlightenment: ideological and cultural movement in the 18th century in Europe and America. Thomas Jefferson. Thinkers like Thomas Hobbes. social and moral thought. legend. characterised by anti-dogmatism and the cult of reason as the supreme guiding principle in human action. separation of powers were central to Enlightenment political. The founders of English empiricism were Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679) and John Locke (1632-1704). illustrating the close link between religion and politics in English history. worth and capacity for self-accomplishment. John Locke. Rousseau.C. It is one of the most flexible and adaptable prose forms. social contract. the folk tradition. • classical revival: the intellectual.): “Man is the measure of all things”. civil rights. 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. pragmatism. or from history. and contributed to the intellectual preparation of the French Revolution (1789). • Evangelical Revival: a trend which started within the Anglican Church (the official. Thomas Paine (the United States) are among the great representatives of this movement. individual liberty.
who collaborated with the equally famous architect and stage designer Inigo Jones. a person or an object. spectacular scenic effects. The basis of this kind of faith was the Gospel (the New Testament) and its revealed truth. Its conventions may be found not only in lyric poetry. uncorrupted life. solemn style. and corresponded to the rationalistic spirit of the 18th century. James II Stuart. mock-heroic style: a style mocking the serious grandeur of the epic. masque: courtly entertainment in dramatic form. who was a Catholic. Neoclassicism flourished in the latter half of the 18th century and the beginning of the 19th. pamphlet: a short prose work on a subject (often political or religious) that the author defends polemically. from the Creation to the Ascension. Jacobean: (from Latin Jacobus) related to the reign of James I Stuart (1603-1625). to its need for clarity and its aspiration to universality. The most famous author of masques in the 17th century (when the genre flourished) was Ben Jonson. In architecture. Neoclassicism meant a return to the purity. This religious orientation developed into a church: the Methodist Church.C. encouraging a personal experience of conversion. in harmony with nature. painting and sculpture. The term also refers to the form in which such a work was published: a booklet with paper covers. and it was often a device of parody and of burlesque. simple. the marginal sections of society. singing and dancing. often of an allegorical nature. The actors used masks and personified pastoral or mythological figures. of spiritual regeneration by grace. founded by John Wesley in the 1740s. ode: an extended lyric poem. Neoclassicism: an aesthetic doctrine inspired from classical Antiquity (especially Latin). 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). but also in Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 26 . was forced to leave the throne and fled to France. In English literature.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • • • excessive rationalism in matters of faith. and soon developed into a distinct religious orientation. with an elaborate stanza structure and a dignified. mystery plays: early popular forms of English drama (13th to 16th century) developed out of the Liturgy of the Church and enacting biblical events. pastoral: a literary composition on a rural theme. It addressed itself to the poor.C. and harmony of classical art.) are the great ancient models for English writers. The origins of pastoral are in the work of the Greek poet Theocritus (316-260 B. Glorious Revolution: in 1688. The Greek poet Pindar (522-442 B. an idea.) and the Latin poet Horace (658 B.C. sumptuous costumes and settings. It was used in order to make a trivial subject seem dignified and impressive. the Neoclassic period is taken to cover almost a century (16601780). involving elaborate dialogue. restraint. expressing lofty sentiments and thoughts regarding an event.). whose authors were deeply revered and were recommended as models. idealising shepherd life and creating a nostalgic image of a peaceful. decorative art.
tone. on the enlargement of his knowledge of himself and of nature. effort. “The poetry of sensibility” is another generic term for these pre-Romantic tendencies. which was the ultimate authority in the interpretation of God’s word in the Holy Scriptures. 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. its limits are less well defined. implied the idea that the language of poetry is different in quality from ordinary language. it had not fully reformed itself. poetic diction: a term that. Shakespeare. “Wit” designates here the person who displays liveliness and brilliance of spirit. Pico della Mirandola. Lope de Vega. by Columbus. favoured the growth of individualism. consisting in a tremendous development and transformation in all spheres. who rejected the authority of the English Church because. which opened the modern era. of the rebirth of learning.g. Thomas More. 27 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Sir Charles Sedley. it overlaps with the Augustan Age. Raphael. for the Neoclassic writers. William Wycherley. style – used by a poet. Tasso (Italy). Edmund Spenser. and brilliant accomplishments in scholarship and science. The most outstanding of the Restoration Wits (or Court Wits) were George Villiers. centred on integrity. when monarchy was re-established in England after the Puritan rule (1649-1660). it was the period of Charles II’s reign (1660-1685). of America. of the expansion of education. It refers to the particular kind of language – vocabulary. Machiavelli. which was to play an essential role in the rise of capitalism. Cervantes (Spain). in the 16th and 17th centuries. John Vanbrugh. Restoration: historically. It placed emphasis on the individual’s spiritual autonomy and creative potential. Restoration Wits: the generic name for the Restoration dramatists. thus. Francis Bacon (England). Duke of Buckingham. Ariosto. Leonardo da Vinci. and they continued to be used in the 18th century.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • drama. Philip Sidney. industry. romance or the novel. The Puritans insisted on man’s duty of actively serving God and on his responsibility towards his own conscience. selected according to genre and subject. From a literary point of view. the sense of purpose. especially their work ethics. Their beliefs and convictions. The Renaissance was the age of the great geographical discoveries (e. Desiderius Erasmus (Holland). in their view. Sir George Etherege. and of the awakening of the reformist spirit. Renaissance: cultural movement which started in Italy in the 14th century and spread to Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries. It is the period of transition from the Middle Ages and the feudal order to early capitalism. It was characterised by a remarkable flourishing of arts and literature. Prominent figures of the Renaissance are Petrarch. 1492). They propagated a doctrine of spiritual equality and cultivated a stern morality. Puritans: members of a Protestant religious group. Romantic: the Romantic Age in England is usually considered to extend from the end of the 18th century to the 1830s. Boccaccio. It is sometimes seen as extending to the end of the 17th century.
): Roman statesman. and a writer. The tradition survived into the 18th century. His famous political speeches and writings Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 28 . and with the French Revolution (1789). as well as an unfinished utopia. Sometimes. choleric and melancholic – were seen as the result of the dominance of one of these humours. Renaissance dramatists used songs in their plays to create a particular atmosphere. fluids) of the body (blood. During the Renaissance. sonnet: a poem consisting of 14 lines. song: a poem composed for singing. phlegmatic. the emphasis on the spontaneity of poetic inspiration are also among distinctive features of Romanticism. according to a dominating inclination or passion. independently of circumstances. poet and scholar. with Every Man in His Humour (1598) and Every Man Out of His Humour (1599). in the 17th century it came to mean fancy or liveliness of thought and imagination. This theory had a great influence on the conception of character in the 16th and 17th century comedy. the four “humours” (i. The assertion of the self. In mediaeval and Renaissance physiology and pathology. the capacity or talent of making unexpected. The four traditional temperaments – sanguine. with various rhyme patterns. Marcus Tullius (106-43 B.C. The Romantic spirit is usually associated with the championship of progressive social and political causes. one of the most influential literary voices of his age. The New Atlantis (published in 1627). orator. it meant intelligence or wisdom.e. the belief in the spiritual correspondence between man and nature. the quality of a writing that displays this capacity. phlegm. 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. two fine examples of comedy of humours. Cicero. Francis (1561-1626): the most influential thinker of the English Renaissance. in which he anticipates many of the later conquests of modern science. with or without musical accompaniment. He started his literary career as a playwright. which emerged in Britain in the context of the sympathy with the struggle of the American colonies for independence from British domination (1775-1781). Astrophil and Stella. the promoter of the new scientific spirit. yellow bile – or choler. Ben (1572-1637): dramatist. in which the characters act. and a firm believer in man’s creative potential. surprising associations. the founder of modern rationalist materialism. The sonnet sequence/cycle was frequently used during the Renaissance (Sir Philip Sidney. 1591-1595). He was also an eminent statesman. Edmund Spenser. and black bile – or melancholy) were believed to determine a person’s disposition and character. philosopher and writer. Jonson.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • Romanticism is a European cultural and literary movement. wit: intellectual brilliance and ingenuity. Gallery of personalities • Bacon. Amoretti. 1591. His literary work includes a series of essays on a wide variety of subjects.
He laid the foundations of the differential calculus. In his work of moral and political philosophy Leviathan. humanity in the state of nature is driven by aggressive competition. religion. Publius Cornelius (55-120 A.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background • • • • • • • on rhetoric and style provided a model of eloquence in prose. unlike that of Hobbes. must guarantee man’s natural right to liberty and life. studied the mechanics of planetary motion and formulated the law of gravitation. for instance. the laws and regulations of human society imitate the laws of nature: the “great Leviathan” is the State. Seneca. whose concise and trenchant style inspired 17th century English prose writers. Theophrastus (372-287 B. It is fear of death. Petrarch: Francesco Petrarca (1304-1374).D. Italian poet and humanist. the “body politic” created in perfect analogy with the “body natural” of “that rational and most excellent work of nature. For Hobbes. Locke was a firm supporter of the Glorious Revolution and of constitutional monarchy. or the Matter. insists on man’s perfect freedom in the state of nature. Hobbes applies rationalist-materialist principles to the explanation of human nature and society. politics. made important discoveries in the field of optics. Lucius Annaeus (4 B. John (1632-1704): considered the “father” of English empiricism. writer and statesman. His political philosophy. Newton. author. and man’s agreement to submit to a governing authority is an expression of that freedom. the instinct of self-preservation. Locke insists on the mutual obligations of the individual and the instituted authority.-65 A. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 29 . and Hobbes describes this generalised state of war by the famous formula “homo homini lupus” (“man is wolf to man”). mathematician. of the first treatise of ancient philosophy. besides the Characters.C. whose conceptions were profoundly influenced by the development of physics and mathematics. but he was interested in a variety of intellectual fields: philosophy. Locke studied medicine. astronomer and philosopher.C.): Roman philosopher. Thomas (1588-1679): materialist philosopher. in a kind of social contract. economics. the latter.” A fundamental problem for Hobbes is that of the foundation of the social and political order.D. that determines man to surrender part of his natural rights to the authority of a civil government.): Roman historian and statesman.): Greek philosopher and naturalist. greatly influenced by Hobbes. ethics. According to him. which was central to Enlightenment thought. Isaac (1642-1727): English physicist. Ecclesiastical and Civil (1651). chief figure of the scientific revolution of the 17th century. Hobbes. Man. Tacitus. the initiator of the revival of the study of ancient Greek and Latin literature. Both Hobbes and Locke can be seen as the initiators of the “social contract” theory. and his political doctrine inspired the American constitution. Form and Power of a Commonwealth. Locke.
d.T. Pope. Dryden. English Literature and Civilisation.1 SAQ 3 • • • • • • • • • SAQ 4 1. 4. 3. Marvell. Editura Universităţii Suceava. Milton.). Dryden. 2003 (pp. even extravagant style of the Renaissance to the simple elegance. concision and plainness: from the highly ornate. 6. William Wycherley. Cowper romantic comedy: Shakespeare dark comedy: Shakespeare tragi-comedy: Shakespeare. Macsiniuc.2.T. there was a tendency towards simplicity. Pope didactic poems: Pope philosophical poems: Pope descriptive-meditative poems: Thomson. the sonnet: Shakespeare.F. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost.3.T. Fletcher and Beaumont satirical comedy: Ben Jonson. Duke of Buckingham. Herbert.The seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: intellectual and literary background Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. Gray the epic: Milton metaphysical poetry: Donne. Ioan-Aurel (ed. 2003 (pp. 4.T SAQ 2 a. Donne. c.F. Sir George Etherege. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. 8. 7-49) 3. clarity and straightforwardness of the Augustan style. Thomson. Sheridan sentimental comedy: Steele. . 1983 (pp. Sir George Sedley. John Gay Further reading 1. precision. Cornelia.F. 3. 9-32) 2.T. 2. The Literature of the Beginnings.F SAQ 5 • • • • • • • SAQ 6 In general. Blake the ode: Marvell. Herrick. 7. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. 5. 115-141) 30 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .4.F. Marvell satire: Dryden. Editura Universităţii Suceava.T. Collins. 6. Preda. from a highly rhetorical style to forms of expression which aspired to the plainness of common speech.T.T. The English Eighteenth Century. 5. Carew. Goldsmith comedy of manners: the “Restoration Wits” (George Villiers. Cowley. Milton the pastoral: Milton. Fielding. Pope. b. Goldsmith. Cumberland burlesque comedy: George Villiers. John Vanbrugh). Goldsmith.T. Turcu. 2. Luminiţa Elena. The Novel in Its Beginnings. artificial.
2. 2.1.2. 2.9. His later plays The baroque spirit of Shakespeare’s great tragedies Hamlet: a revenge play Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility in Hamlet Hamlet: the philosopher vs. 2. 2. 220.127.116.11.1.3. 2.5. 18.104.22.168. 22.214.171.124. 126.96.36.199.2. 2.2.2. 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 .6. 188.8.131.52.4. 2. 2.2. 2. 184.108.40.206.3.3. 220.127.116.11.3.11.12. 2. 2. 2. 18.104.22.168.3.The late Renaissance and the Baroque UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE Unit Outline 2 2.2. 2. 2.3.1. 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. 2.7.
the sense of tradition as a guarantee for order. stable and modern state. The emergence of the baroque sensibility The early and high Renaissance* in England developed under the Tudor monarchs*. idealism and confidence gave way to a growing sense of disorder and violence. The spirit that dominated this age was typical of the Renaissance. Increasingly prosperous and powerful owing to colonial expansion and economic progress. and Edmund Spenser* complete the literary picture of the glorious Elizabethan Age. The Elizabethan age: the English high Renaissance Features of the high Renaissance spirit 32 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . this spirit declined under the pressure of certain historical events* and cultural tendencies. High Renaissance English literature has its most accomplished expression in Shakespeare’s work. The vision of a harmonious. Renaissance England reached the climax in its flourishing.The late Renaissance and the Baroque By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ define the characteristic aspects of the baroque sensibility ♦ compare the Renaissance and the baroque visions on man and the universe ♦ compare aspects of Renaissance and baroque literary taste in the 17th century ♦ explain the baroque character of the main themes and motifs in Shakespeare’s tragedies ♦ identify patterns of symbolism and imagery in the studied plays by Shakespeare ♦ describe the main features of metaphysical poetry ♦ explain what a metaphysical conceit is ♦ analyse the use of conceits in poems by John Donne and Andrew Marvell ♦ point out the elements of baroque sensibility in the poetry of Donne and Marvell Unit objectives 2. the enormous vitality nourished by the trust in man’s powers – these are general features of the high Renaissance spirit that found their expression in literature as well. The former expansiveness. Philip Sydney*. well-ordered universe.1. during whose reign England developed into a strong. anxiety and even pessimism. Christopher Marlowe*. Elizabethan England also witnessed an explosion of creative energies in the field of letters and arts. Under Queen Elizabeth I. with its sense of confidence and optimism. In the late Renaissance. but the outstanding achievements of writers like Thomas Kyd*. to the perception of man as a bundle of contradictions and the view of the universe as threatened by instability. to scepticism.
1. with its abundance of bloody deaths.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. In lyric poetry.2. Baroque features of late Renaissance drama and poetry The essence of the baroque sensibility is conflict and tension. but his great tragedies belong not only chronologically to the Jacobean age: as embodiments of the baroque spirit. for excess. splendour. St. in literature. sensualism and mysticism. to the macabre. refinement and cruelty. Although very diverse. Shakespeare’s early comedies and history plays* are Elizabethan in spirit. on which the “show” of life must end. with the tendency of breaking proportions.” these poets distinguish themselves by the ingenuity with which they force the limits of language. nothing reflects better its emergence than drama. or the world as stage. its sense of form. The Baroque displays attraction to obscurity and melancholy. and. capable of rendering its 33 Revenge tragedy Metaphysical poetry Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . both in its themes and motifs. The Renaissance cult of rational order.1. The baroque vision of experience of the Metaphysical Poets required a new kind of poetic language. proportion and symmetry. and in its dramatic conception. the tragic divisions in man’s soul. Characteristic of the baroque spirit are the sense of ethical relativism and the exploration of the borderline between truth and illusion. the concentration of expression in their poems stand in contrast with the Elizabethan smooth and orderly patterns of versification. The best examples are Thomas Kyd’s revenge tragedy. 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. contrasts with the baroque taste for the extravagant. of confusing or transgressing limits. irony and ambiguity. the spectacular and the sumptuous. the extensive use of paradox. reason and superstition. Paul’s Cathedral in London (16751708): an example of baroque architecture 2. striking imagery. Even the Elizabethan dramatists cultivated elements which announced the Baroque. The unexpected. grandeur. but also to pomp. and not properly forming a “school. wisdom and madness. the paradoxes and contrasts which make up man’s mixed nature. the difficult – often irregular – rhythms. a tendency commonly associated with the baroque is represented by the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. they are the supreme dramatic achievement of late Renaissance. the Baroque displayed a sharp consciousness of life’s ephemerality. and Christopher Marlowe’s characters. destroyed by the monstrous excess of their ambition. The Renaissance celebrated Nature and life with its joys.1. Characteristic baroque themes were those of life as dream and life as theatre. ornamental rhetoric and preference for convention and artifice. The Jacobean and Caroline drama* is essentially baroque. life and death. of man’s limitations and the inevitability of death.
you will be acquainted. In the following two subchapters. at the end of this unit. R: celebration of life’s joys B: 3. optimism. respectively. classical balance. R: vision of the world as harmonious and well-ordered B: 2. sense of form B: 4. with the two most relevant accomplishments of the late Renaissance English literature: William Shakespeare’s great tragedies (Hamlet. 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. as expressions of the baroque spirit of the age. King Lear. If there should be major differences.The late Renaissance and the Baroque complexities. exuberance B: Compare your answers to those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. R: cult for order and symmetry. R: confidence. 34 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Othello and Macbeth) and his last romance play. read again the preceding subchapters. as well as some of the metaphysical poems of John Donne and Andrew Marvell. The Tempest. Metaphysical poetry blends passion and reason. and it is appealing simultaneously to the sensibility and the intellect of the reader. complicated feeling and analytical detachment.
He was a master of every contemporary dramatic form. Shakespeare’s genius. there is an astonishing variety of styles and registers. all mastered with supreme art. His characters emerge from the dramatic situation with an unsurpassed force of conviction. and a culmination of its literary art. A whole human universe inhabits Shakespeare’s plays. His later plays Shakespeare’s greatness as a dramatist comes. In his last period of creation (1608-1611). in plain. in the great blank verse* soliloquies*. The richness and profundity of his comprehensive creation establish him as a universal genius. The beginning of the 17th century is also the beginning of his second phase (1600-1608). medieval and contemporary sources – English. irrespective of the register in which they are conceived – tragic or comic.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. aspirations and interests. where the lyrical and dramatic elements are in perfect fusion. A wide range of feelings. romantic or trivial. It ranges from the sublime accents of pure poetry. craftsmen or servants. as well as in the tragic grandeur of the inner conflicts that they portray. loyalty and betrayal. jealousy. hate.2. and experiences are given dramatic shape in his plays: love. but his enduring preeminence has been insured by his extraordinary insight into human nature. Shakespeare’s whole work is a synthesis of the concerns and convictions of the Renaissance. or periods of creation. Italian. sublime or burlesque. states of mind. from the variety of his work. According to the dramatic necessity. Shakespeare had a natural instinct for the stage. They are always credible. Othello (1604). King Lear and Macbeth (1605). search for truth. motifs and imagery. to the prose speech of simple folk. and French. struggle for power. envy. devotion. gratitude and ingratitude. in which every character – major or minor – has a consistent individuality and is animated by passions. and a perfect adequacy of the language to the character’s moral nature and to the dramatised experience or emotion. but in the creation of characters and the exploration of their mind and heart. and the range of his subjects is extremely diverse. all of them are re-workings and adaptations of subjects taken from a variety of ancient. which brought him enormous success during his lifetime. 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 . moral attitudes. In Shakespeare’s whole work. friendship. language. These plays may be seen as strongly influenced by the emerging baroque sensibility in their themes. Shakespeare modulates the language in each play. among other features. etc. He was not original in the use of his subjects: with a few exceptions. sometimes even trivial. rendered accurately in their poetic truth. conflicts. so that it displays a similar variety. when his artistic maturity and depth of vision produced his four monumental tragedies: Hamlet (1601). his deep understanding of humanity.” Shakespeare’s work is conventionally divided into several phases. His inventiveness and imagination were invested not in the intrigues. transcending the artistic hierarchy of his age and consecrating him as always “our contemporary.
read again the preceding subchapter. but they deal. by the chaos arising from the corruption and collapse of values. SAQ 2 Answer the following questions. in no more than 4 lines / 40 words each: 1. If they should differ significantly. between truth and falsehood. but he adds to it philosophical and ethical implications of the deepest significance. the downfall of the tragic hero is accompanied by the destruction of a natural order. with the restoration of order.2. as far as his approach to character is concerned? 2. What does Shakespeare’s greatness consist in. The issues that are explored dramatically in Shakespeare’s later tragedies reflect the spirit of uncertainty and increasing scepticism of a baroque age. with the effects of evil on innocence.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The last period: the romance plays tragedies. are also tributary to the spirit of the Baroque. His romance plays. He is concerned here with the paradoxes in the relationship between reality and appearance. with the sense of hope overcoming spiritual desolation. basically. 2. with the consequences of imperfect knowledge and self-blindness. 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. In these plays. with innocence and vitality triumphing over evil and death. at the end of the unit. of which The Tempest (1611) is the crowning achievement. 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”*. common in the Renaissance.1.
the widow queen. which represents a similar scene of murder. absorbed more and more by his consciousness of the paradoxes of his difficult task of exposing the truth. Her brother. It is in these four great tragedies that Shakespeare gives the full proof of his artistic genius. generous and brilliantly intelligent. the masterful treatment of highly complex characters. Hamlet escapes a criminal plot set up by Claudius.The late Renaissance and the Baroque natural order of things or if it betrays the indifference of Nature – or God – towards man.2. rejected by Hamlet in spite of their mutual affection. the play ends on a note of hope. accepts Claudius’s treacherous plan of killing Hamlet during a duel. 2. Sent on a diplomatic mission to England. Laertes.3. takes over the rule of Denmark. Upon his return to Denmark from his university studies. brave. when Fortinbras. all the main protagonists find their death. Sir Laurence Olivier in Hamlet (1948) 2. he has the occasion to kill Claudius. Hamlet arranges a play to be performed at court. the intensity of poetic expression – especially in the soliloquies – are features that rank these plays highest in the whole history of the genre. Hamlet: a revenge play In Hamlet. The enlargement of meaning through consistent patterns of imagery running throughout each play. Hamlet feels all his certainties destroyed. Young Hamlet is thus confronted with the horrors of fratricide and incest. During the play. Claudius.2. Polonius is the father of beautiful Ophelia. Hamlet learns that Ophelia. in the confusions of the final scene. with a poisoned sword. young prince Hamlet learns from the ghost of his recently dead father. but refrains from doing it as the latter was in prayer. At one point. and with the immense burden of revenge. Hamlet hides his terrible grief behind the mask of madness. that he had actually been poisoned by his brother. Claudius’s guilty conscience betrays him. sensitive and idealistic. Renaissance man and the baroque sensibility Hamlet has been seen as the embodiment of the ideal Renaissance prince – refined and cultivated. but the plot escapes their control and. a courtier. the first in this series of masterpieces. he kills Polonius. His Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 37 . Back to the castle. required by his dead father. has drowned herself. Confronted with the moral corruption around him. In spite of this bloody outcome. mistaking him for Claudius. old king Hamlet. Shakespeare deals with his great tragic themes in the frame of a revenge tragedy. the Norwegian prince and glorious military hero. as he now sees in her only another embodiment of woman’s frailty. and continually delays the act of revenge. In order to find confirmation for the ghost’s story. In another scene. who suspects him of aspiring to take his throne. who had really gone mad. who was now the new king and who had married Gertrude.2. bringing in the prospect of renewal and of the restoration of order.
read again the preceding subchapter. In Hamlet’s tormented soul. It allows the hero to take distance from the corrupt order of the “prison” that Denmark has become for him. His effort to see beyond the veil of illusion.The late Renaissance and the Baroque new consciousness that “something’s rotten in Denmark” plunges him into a nightmare. the balance and confidence of the Renaissance man have been replaced by scepticism and mistrust. Hamlet: the philosopher vs. as well as the indicated fragment. from the Reader contains a short meditation on man and the universe.4. is eminently a philosopher’s effort. and this may explain his indefinite postponing of the revenge. revealing Hamlet’s dualistic vision. which is only partly dissimulated. 2. Madness becomes the refuge of the sensitive conscience from moral chaos.2. What is the essence of this divided view? Formulate your answer in the space left below. in which all the values on which he had relied have lost their meaning. 38 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the man of action Hamlet’s penetrating spirit has discerned a reality of human nature that he had not suspected.1. his obsessive quest for truth and certainty. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the suggestions offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. The sign of this confusion is the typically baroque motif of Hamlet’s madness. SAQ 3 Text 2. 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.
Hamlet feels overwhelmed by the real task that he is called to fulfil. The earl of Gloucester joins them. Maddened with grief. Lear becomes the victim of the ingratitude of his two elder daughters. The motif of madness. if there is a purpose for its existence in the world of man.” 2. marks in fact a growth in his moral understanding. both of them prove to be the loyal. He is also accompanied by the faithful Earl of Kent in disguise and by the Court Fool.2.5. is closely linked. of human suffering. are skilfully brought together and create a new ironic dimension in the play. there is madness in nature itself. starts with a folk tale motif: old Lear plans to leave his kingdom to his three daughters if he is pleased with their declarations of love. which would not undo the past. These explorations become more important than the technical matter of revenge. which hide much wisdom under the appearance of playful nonsense. of setting right again the “time” which is “out of joint. son of Lear’s loyal supporter. 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 . as in Hamlet. which is that of restoring a lost order. which has been interpreted in innumerable ways. the quest for higher meanings. on the other hand. is the victim of a staged play of appearances. The storm outside matches the storm in Lear’s hurt soul. an outburst of violence which evokes to Lear the cruelty of his daughters. whom he disinherits. Hamlet’s introspective. Edgar. like that of blindness. Cordelia. questioning side is exacerbated by the irruption of evil in a universe that he had thought well-ordered. Lear strives to understand the roots of evil. he is wondering: “Is there a cause in nature that makes these hard hearts?” Edgar’s disguised madness. is also an exile from his own family. and. exiled Lear wanders in a terrible storm in the company of Edgar. who is disguised as a lunatic beggar. Disappointed by the reticence of his youngest daughter. through paradox. of truth and illusion. to the themes of knowledge and self-knowledge. in reality. The storm scenes in the play contain the highest symbolic concentration. Lear’s own madness. as his father has been deceived by his other son Edmund. Goneril and Reagan. after his eyes have been put out for having helped Lear. and he is thus reunited with his son without knowing it. unconditionally loving ones.The late Renaissance and the Baroque The delay of Hamlet’s revenge his incapacity to act. another “fall of princes” tragedy. the Earl of Gloucester. who deprive him of all prerogatives and turn him out of their castles. His intellectual energies are now concentrated in his search for the meaning of the ultimate questions of life and death. King Lear: the madness of tragic grief King Lear. a bastard. which helps him endure his suffering. Edgar. like Lear’s daughter Cordelia. and the Fool’s comments. to believe him a traitor and usurper. Tragically.
6. the bond of a love marriage is the frame in which Shakespeare explores the theme of evil in connection with that of appearance vs. With his mind poisoned by a false evidence of Desdemona’s infidelity. faithfulness/betrayal. The noble protagonist. In Othello. Claudius’s fratricide and the cruelty of Lear’s daughters are transgressions which turn the tragic hero’s world upside down. and this destroys his confidence in a moral order. painted by James Graham (early 17th century) 40 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 2. and the tragic disaster shows how the play of appearances can dissolve firm moral opposites like truth/lie. Othello. and its outburst is always accompanied by the awakening of the tragic hero’s consciousness of the divorce between seeming and being. Desdemona. In Othello. evil succeeds precisely because of the perfection of Desdemona’s purity and Othello’s trusting nature. unfaithful. To be or to seem: Othello Evil coming from those who are naturally closest to us is intolerable.2. is led by Iago to believe his wife. As a result of Iago’s manipulations. a brave and honest general of the Venetian republic. Othello kills her and takes his own life when her innocence is proved to him. acting against it. Scene from Othello. Othello is thrown into the terrible agony of suspecting that beauty and innocence might disguise corruption. innocence/guilt. 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).The late Renaissance and the Baroque Evil as destruction of the “natural” order unnatural acts which violate this order. Evil is that which destroys Nature. essence.
2. paradoxically. the horror of evil is amplified by the fact that the protagonist’s crime is committed against Duncan as his king. The evil reverberates in the whole land: in the words of Malcolm. but. a brave and worthy general in Duncan’s army.7. which constitutes a violation of the natural (therefore moral) order. innocence and corruption. ____________________ 2.2. to 2. Read them carefully and fill in the indicated space with the right title(s).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. ____________________ Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. kills the sleeping king and takes the throne. Macbeth’s conscience soon starts accusing him. ____________________ 4. / It weeps. you need to revise subchapters 2. There is “no sweet oblivious antidote” to cure Lady Macbeth’s “diseased” mind either. underlining the theme of knowledge. Macbeth’s ambitions are inflamed by the prediction of three witches that he shall be king of Scotland. The storm scenes intensify symbolically the hero’s tragic sense of confusion. Macbeth. at the instigation of his wife. kinsman and guest. The baroque motif of madness is. ____________________ 5. who has a trusting nature.2. is manipulated into confusion about truth and falsehood. If any of your solutions should not correspond. 2.2. at the end of the unit.” The imagery* of disease is extended to the protagonist’s conscience. since it accompanies the hero’s revelation of the discrepancy between appearance and reality. he multiples his crimes. and unmotivated violence and cruelty. illusion and truth. one of Duncan’s sons. arranging the murder of all those who might threaten his power. it bleeds. and each new day a gash / Is added to her wounds. and she is destroyed by the unbearable Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 41 . Macbeth: the tragedy of “diseased” conscience In Macbeth.6. Persuaded by his wife to hasten the fulfillment. The effects of this sacrilege against Nature are devastating. disorder. 1. The theme of evil is dramatised as a crime against the bonds of blood. The protagonist. The hero’s exacerbated introspective tendency makes him postpone action. “Our country sinks beneath the yoke. invaded by “horrible imaginings” and hallucinations. ____________________ 3.
” heard immediately after he has committed the murder? What does sleep represent for Macbeth here? Answer in the space left below. in which he fights to the end with the same determination that had brought him the glory of a hero at the beginning of the play. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. 42 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The late Renaissance and the Baroque burden of sin. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Text 2. Shakespeare’s shortest and most poetic tragedy reveals the incalculable effects of the darkness with which destiny may cloud the moral conscience of a noble hero. How can we interpret Macbeth’s hallucination about the voice crying “Sleep no more. who ends up by losing the belief in any meaning of life. scene 2. If there should be significant differences. Macbeth joins his wife after he has killed Duncan. Macbeth’s heroic strength of will enables him to survive the terrible inner torments. in no more than 120 words / 12 lines. from which the ultimate relief is suicide. reveals how soon the abominable crime has begun to work on his spirit. SAQ 5 In Act II. from the Reader. His words to Lady Macbeth render his first thoughts after the murder.2. extracted from this scene. and he meets his punishment in the final battle. read the fragment once more. / Macbeth does murder sleep.
by his powers. marvelous. on which he lives alone with his daughter. a creature whose beastly nature is beyond Prospero’s attempt of educating him. Alonzo. involving the shipwrecked characters. 43 John William Waterhouse: Miranda –The Tempest (1916) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . who. who instantly fall in love with each other. the sense of a benevolent providential design. the theme of loss and recovery. The Winter’s Tale. but his plan is prevented by Ariel’s music. Shakespeare’s last plays Shakespeare’s four plays belonging to his last period of creation (1608-1611) – Pericles. their plots contain characteristic ingredients like dangers which are finally avoided. the last expression of Shakespeare’s mature genius. the jester. separated from each other in various parts of the island and all believing the others dead. has turned him into a slave. the choice of a remote setting. The plot of The Tempest Of these four plays. He had long studied the arts of magic. They may also be described as romance plays. the pronounced elements of the supernatural.9. is considered the finest. his faithful spiritservant.g. the master of an island.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. 2. and Sebastian. the long journey. respectively –. Prospero is the former and legitimate duke of Milan. or tension and suspense followed by happy reversals – features that make them tragi-comedies. king of Naples. of exile and return). a storm wrecks the ship carrying Antonio. Another sub-plot brings together Ferdinand and Miranda. while for physical labour he uses Caliban. Caliban hates and fears Prospero. It is also in these last plays that Shakespeare’s dramatic imagination relies to a greater extent on symbolism. are encouraged by Caliban to kill Prospero and take over the rule of the island. and certain themes and motifs (e. In a plot-line that parallels and parodies the latter. Trinculo. and his supernatural powers have given him control over both the natural elements and the spirits.2. Miranda. One of these sub-plots involves the courtiers: Antonio persuades Sebastian to kill his sleeping brother. magic. a drunken servant. duke of Milan.2. Three lines of action develop. as well as other passengers. After the tragedies.8. The Tempest (1611). these plays offer patterns of reconciliation and positive solutions to life’s contradictions. In its opening scene. and The Tempest – are described either as tragi-comedies or as romance plays. They mix serious and comic action. We soon find out that the storm and shipwreck have been magically provoked by Prospero. Sebastian and Ferdinand – Alonzo’s brother and son. His acts of magic are fulfilled through Ariel. the fairy-tale atmosphere. to take his throne. myth. Alonzo. usurped by his brother Antonio and forced into exile twelve years before. owing to the improbability of the action. Cymbeline. the shipwreck.
education] can never stick. but. a “thing of darkness. in Ferdinand and Miranda civilisation and nature are united in their most innocent forms.2. On the island. The grossest instincts of human nature and a fundamental viciousness are symbolically embodied in the grotesque figure of Caliban. Caliban Innocence vs. The theme of power Ariel vs. the control of intelligence over nature.e. whose youth and innocence are the premises for the undoing of the wrongs of the past. Prospero’s project acquires a wider dimension through the union of Ferdinand and Miranda. to master himself. While Caliban and the plotting courtiers and servants demonstrate that both nature and society are capable of corruption. and to return to the world in his full humanity.” he had also failed to see his brother’s true character. and then to Milan. In the final act.10. at the end. “neglecting worldly ends. Ariel is commanded to bring all the characters before Prospero. more importantly. Prospero. Prospero plans a safe return to Naples for the wedding of Miranda and Ferdinand. He forgives his treacherous brother and those involved in his usurpation. Evil is not absent in The Tempest: there are echoes of Shakespeare’s previous plays in the motif of the usurping brother planning murder. now.” claiming his throne.The late Renaissance and the Baroque Prospero’s initial plan had been revenge. evil Elizabeth Green – Ariel: The Tempest (1922) 44 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . he regains his authority and learns again the arts of power. influenced by Ariel.” “on whose nature / Nurture [i. His act of forgiveness is the highest demonstration of princely power. the personification of Prospero’s imagination. and it is significant that this act is accompanied by his decision to abandon his magic. 2. who now repent. for the emergence of a regenerated world. one of Shakespeare’s most fascinating creations. The power of innocence to redeem evil and restore order and the values of humanity is another important theme. to break his staff (symbol of supernatural power) and to drown his book (symbol of supernatural knowledge). Major themes An important theme in The Tempest is that of the nature of power. At the opposite pole. or of the wickedness of the servant turning against his master. who reveals himself to them as “the wronged duke of Milan. assumes a certain responsibility for his own dethronement: absorbed in his studies. Ariel.” who can be controlled only by the art of magic. the scholar-magician. he has a change of heart and sees in the union of the lovers a possibility of reconciliation and of a new beginning. represents pure spirit. he learns.
. If there should be major differences. Prospero reminds Caliban that he did his best to raise him from his animal condition. extracted from The Tempest. Act I. by teaching him to speak. Compare your answer with the one offered at the end of the unit. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 45 . scene 2. of the role of language in acquiring knowledge. Formulate your answer in 150 words / 15 lines.4. What implications can you find in their exchange of replies? You may think.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 6 Read Text 2. Here. more carefully. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. for instance. read the fragment again. or in developing self-identity. Caliban answers that the only benefit of being able to speak is that he can now curse Prospero. Full of resentment.
but an important symbolic ingredient in its major events. which “delight and hurt not. music suggests harmony and the power of the spirit to purify human nature.” The sea-journey Music 2. is frequent in Shakespeare’s plays. The title itself points to the importance of the symbolism of the sea-journey. Even Caliban seems to be responsive to the “sounds and sweet airs” of the island. then at least man should strive to discern in it. comforts Ferdinand’s despair when he thinks his father dead. This emphasis on spectacle and its power to reveal truths by its illusion constitutes a baroque element in The Tempest. of performance. Another pervading symbol is that of music. The playmetaphor. a profound spiritual transformation and growth. sublimating its primitive energies.11. 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. and it even contains (like Hamlet) a play within the play: a masque* performed as a celebration of Ferdinand and Miranda’s engagement. manipulates the characters and prescribes the ending. 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. and prevents the wicked plots of both the courtiers and the drunken servants. or to impose upon it. whose magic art controls every incident. Prospero also needs “some heavenly music” to accomplish the final act of his plan. It is through music that he calms down the fury of the waters.2. In opposition with the convulsions and dangers of the tempest.12. Symbols in The Tempest Several symbolic elements contribute to the treatment of the themes in The Tempest.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. the association of life with the insubstantiality and briefness of a theatre show. and it is constantly associated with the magic actions of Ariel. The whole play insists on the idea of spectacle. The miraculous survival of the ship’s passengers.2. Ariel – illustration to the 1873 edition of The Works of Shakespeare 46 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The sea-journey and shipwreck are the symbols of a “sea change”*. order and harmony. The play-metaphor The action in The Tempest is practically managed by Prospero. suggests the victory of life over death and of spirit over the elemental power of nature. Shakespeare’s last masterpiece seems to suggest that if life is transient like a theatre performance.
T F 5.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 7 Let us remember a few things about The Tempest. at the end of the unit.2. combines an outstanding intellectual brilliance with lyric grace. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 47 . Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false) for each sentence.” and many disliked its cultivated difficulty. The power of music has no effect on Caliban. Their styles are different. The contemporaries referred to their poetry as “strong lines. except that of terrifying him. Ferdinand and Miranda represent the innocent young generation capable of renewing Prospero’s former world. in his own way. T F Make sure your answers are right by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Prospero intends to use his magic power and supernatural knowledge in his regained authority as duke of Milan.3. revise subchapters2. was first intended to bring discredit on them. 1. 2. A baroque feature of The Tempest is the emphasis on the theatrical quality of the action. John Donne and Andrew Marvell illustrate best the baroque sensibility of the 17th century in their themes and expressive strategies. and this makes them both masters of metaphysical wit. Two essential symbolic elements contribute to the development of the theme of regeneration: the sea-journey and music. The betrayal of his brother and the plotting of the courtiers on the island were severely punished by Prospero. T F 3. T F 7.12. 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. T F 2. The metaphysical poets The term metaphysical. but each of them. staged and managed by Prospero through his magic art. applied to certain poets of the early and mid-seventeenth century.2. T F 4. T F 6. If any of your choices should be wrong. You must find them among the following statements. of which three are false.9 to 2.
and to unify diverse and even discordant aspects of inner and outer reality into a single experience. and a blend of the commonplace and the sublime.” A new kind of poetry emerged.e. a demand for “more matter and less words.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2.3.1. There is always a connection between the abstract and the concrete. but metaphysical conceits were far-fetched* comparisons. In spite of its logical. united] by violence together. or discovery of occult [i. all metaphysical poets are self-conscious and analytic. The thought goes hand in hand with the feeling. but also his reason. and which blended expressive conciseness with density of meaning. by the ingenuity with which they forced the perception of similarity in the most unexpected elements. which is developed through the exploitation of an image in all its possible implications. Starting with the last decade of the 16th century. As extended comparisons. Irrespective of the kind of experience they endeavour to render. “More matter and less words” 2. The metaphysical conceit The poetic device by which such opposites are brought together and reconciled is the conceit. is contemplated from a certain distance. with patterns of rhythms closer to those of spoken language than to the requirements of literary tradition. hidden. to bring not only his imagination and emotion into play. secret] resemblances in things apparently unlike. a cold intellectual exercise. Samuel Johnson* was to describe (in 1779) the kind of wit which characterised a metaphysical conceit as discordia concors*. which starts from a comparison. A poem in this tradition is usually focused on an idea or line of argument. By means of conceits. conceits were abundant in Elizabethan dramatic and lyrical poetry.2. The impression is that this experience. writers had to face a new exigency. often extended by the use of hyperbole* or oxymoron*.” Conceits were effective instruments in developing an argument and in rendering complication and subtlety of thought.” as “the most heterogeneous ideas yoked [i. a metaphysical poem is not a piece of abstract thinking. and the emotions involved. regardless of the subject of the poem. which helps the poet to develop his subject. The reader is expected to approach such a poem with an active mind.3. from a most ordinary circumstance. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Discordia concors 48 . This is an elaborate figurative device. which was in fact the expression of a new spiritual context. Characteristics of metaphysical poetry Metaphysical poetry displayed a new quality of writing. linked. The main features of metaphysical poetry are concentration and logical coherence. and almost always such a poem starts from a very personal situation. as well as in ordering and mastering intense emotion. argumentative quality. meant to surprise and delight the reader by their wit*. as “a combination of dissimilar images. Dr.e. that the poet detaches himself from his own feelings in order to better understand and analyse them. a metaphor or an analogy. the poet was able to reconcile contradictory states of mind and feeling.
and allegory. Themes in John Donne’s poetry John Donne is one of the most influential poets of the 17th century. its decorative use of classical mythology. ♦ ♦ ♦ ♦ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. you will look at some famous examples of metaphysical conceits. and created a style which had the vigour and liveliness of colloquial speech. and the same realistic force. revise subchapters 2. the same blend of ingenious reasoning and intense passion. and 2.3. If they should differ considerably. 2. He rejected the regular versification of Elizabethan poetry .3. Use the space left below. the two most outstanding representatives of this poetic trend in the 17th century. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 49 . and both are explored in the whole richness and variety of their possible experiences. Donne displays the same sophisticated wit. in poems belonging to John Donne and Andrew Marvell. In the treatment of both themes.3. and a highly original one. at the end of the unit. In the following subchapters.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 8 Order the main aspects describing metaphysical poetry into four essential features. pastoral* conventions.1. Each answer should not exceed 2 lines / 20 words.3. Two important themes in his poetic work are love and faith. and which confers dramatic realism to his poems.2.
His love poetry is revolutionary in its rejection of the Petrarchan* conventions of courtly love*.” “tear-floods”). 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’s rejection of the Petrarchan tradition A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning The Flea: seduction and wit 50 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . He also suggests sometimes that physical union. Donne changes this conventional vision of love.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. beautiful. This is a seduction poem. sometimes speaking frankly of his erotic desire. and he seems to amuse himself. when accompanied by genuine feeling. and often emphasising the need for mutual love. Donne is highly playful in this poem. from cynicism and playfulness to passionate sincerity and the celebration of both physical love and spiritual union. are however harmless to man.4. Crying over their separation would bring to mind an analogy with earthly disasters (“sigh-tempests. unattainable lady and enjoy the pleasures of sensuality. but. in which their blood is now mixed. though greater. Donne adopts a wide range of tones and attitudes. superior – woman was an object of never fulfilled desire. and all that the faithful lover could hope for were symbolic rewards and favours for his constancy and humble submission.3. Chaste.” their separation must be seen in analogy with cosmic disturbances (“the trepidation of the spheres”). their love being so great and “refined. Mingling the trivial with the mystical sublime. according to which woman was always an unattainable ideal. Donne’s love poems In his love poems. sometimes presenting woman as inconstant and unfaithful. he pleads that she should abandon the intransigence of the chaste. His approach of the theme of love is more “realistic”: he often glorifies sexuality and the body as important aspects in the experience of love.” He 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. The poem celebrates the stability and comfort of a secure relationship. may afford an experience of the transcendental. which. These are conceits which illustrate the preference of the metaphysical poets for analogies between the macrocosm and the (human) microcosm. in which the lover tries to persuade his mistress not to cry at his imminent departure. Another powerful example of Donne’s use of logical argument in a poem about love is The Flea. carrying the lover’s witty arguments to their logical extremes.” In fact. he resorts to the extravagant identification of a flea that has bitten both of them with their “marriage bed” and a “marriage temple. in which the speaker brings all his argumentative skill in support of his attempt to convince the woman to accept physical intimacy. A famous poem celebrating shared love is A Valediction*: Forbidding Mourning. dealing with profound personal feeling and emotion from the distance of intellectual argument. as this would be a triple “sin.
The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 9 Read Donne’s poem (Text 2.6. you need to revise subchapter 2. as well. at the end of the unit.. which explains what a metaphysical conceit is.3. Here.2. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 51 . Explain the surprising analogy that he makes in order to speak about mutual love. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. he develops one of his most famous conceits. paying special attention to the last three stanzas. in no more than 18 lines / 180 words. Read the poem again. in the Reader). Formulate your answer in the space left below. If they should differ significantly.
in the exercise of reason. between idealised passion and erotic desire. Tension and paradox are also explored in his religious poems. In Batter My Heart. If love is often a holy mystery for Donne. resurrection and salvation.The late Renaissance and the Baroque 2. on death. paradoxical aspects of the experience of love. Donne’s religious poems Donne’s baroque sensibility is evident in his love poems in the tension between conflicting. He fights against his own sense of sin and guilt. divine judgement. These poems usually display contrary impulses. Donne’s focus is on his deep sense of sin. comparable to that of Shakespeare. In his religious meditations in verse. Donne’s religious poems often develop an analogy between sexual love and divine love. which parallel those in his love poetry. one of Donne’s nineteen Holy Sonnets. which makes him a prisoner of God’s enemy. in which the poet expresses his deep need for a close relationship with God. Batter My Heart Portrait of John Donne (1572-1631) (author unknown) 52 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . gives this sonnet a particular dramatic intensity. Satan. between the need for permanence and the need for variety. for the divine saving grace. of loyalty and betrayal. in which the delight in witty logical argumentation.5. clashes with the poet’s scepticism that the mystery of faith can be penetrated intellectually. Actually.3. on the paradoxes of freedom and captivity. in his religious poems the mystery of faith is often explored in erotic terms. as if suggesting that the experience of erotic union is the only way of understanding our relationship with God. The insistence on violence and struggle. The most eloquent example is the sonnet Batter My Heart. in which the poet’s desire to abandon himself to God’s love is rendered through paradoxical images. this need is expressed by means of several conceits.
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 53 . 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. from the Reader. living through the turbulent years of the Civil War*. and read the poem again. representing Donne’s sonnet Batter My Heart. Marvell left. Donne suggests his contradictory.6. Andrew Marvell combines in his poetic work the sophistication of metaphysical wit with the elegance and grace of classical forms and attitudes. As a Puritan* patriot. according to some critics. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.7.3. the greatest of political poems in English literature: An Horatian Ode* upon Cromwell’s Return from Ireland (written in 1650). nature. and love of country. This meditation on political conflict and national history is impressive by its clarity and controlled variations of tone. In the last six lines. Andrew Marvell: the patriotic theme in the Horatian Ode The last of the metaphysical poets. at the end of the unit. paradoxical feelings by means of a conceit which exploits metaphorically the contrast between marriage and rape. If there should be significant differences.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 10 Read Text 2. 2. revise subchapter 2. Three major themes can be detached from his poetry: love.3.5.
3. the most accomplished is To His Coy Mistress. Marvell often sees.” so the Christian Soul denies the earth and its “impure” pleasures. for fear that it might grow] impure. King Charles I Stuart. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Carpe diem 54 .e. to change the form of ruling power). lest it grow [i. On a Drop of Dew 2. behaving with royal grace in his last minute. The speaker’s argument opposes the “deserts of vast eternity. Although loyal to the Puritan cause. as if Nature itself were a “mystic book.” whose visible beauties are the key to spiritual truths. His nature poems have usually a mystical tendency.” associated with his mistress’s preference for a prolonged courtship. a masterpiece of metaphysical wit. pictured with remarkable precision. which begins with a most accurate description of a dew-drop on a rose petal.e. these details as emblems of a transcendent reality. is On a Drop of Dew. on the scaffold.7. He showed a deep love for the countryside. shyness] and accept his passionate love. 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. in which the speaker develops an ingenious argument in order to persuade his mistress to give up her coyness [i. 2. and many of his poems reveal his delight in the contemplation of rural nature. Nature as “mystic book” Another side of Marvell’s poetic personality is illustrated by his nature poetry. On the other hand. Just as the dew-drop is “trembling. He rather sees the events and the fate of the two rulers in the context of a providential history.8. Marvell does not portray Oliver Cromwell and his opponent. in contrasting colours. What begins as a nature poem is extended into a religious poem by means of a metaphysical conceit.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. anticipating the early Romantic attitude to nature. and thus he can find reason to praise both of them. A natural detail.” and finally dissolves itself “into the glories of the almighty Sun. aspiring to union with almighty God. Marvell emphasises the dignity with which the defeated king met his fate. in this respect. reveals thus its symbolic dimension to the poet’s contemplative mind. but Marvell’s poem extends it into a meditation on time. The carpe diem* motif was popular in Renaissance poetry. however. developed then into a complex analogy with the pure Christian soul and its relation with earth and with heaven. The theme of love in Marvell’s poetry Of Marvell’s love poems. in which both of them act according to a divine order. The most illustrative poem. which illustrates the poet’s skill in combining the playful and the serious.e. Gifted with a sharp sense of observation of natural detail. It is a seduction poem.3.
8.3. is presented as the only way of transcending our mortality. Do not exceed 12 lines / 120 words in all.The late Renaissance and the Baroque to the imperative of conquering time by the intensity of sensual enjoyment. Love. SAQ 11 Read Marvell’s poem To His Coy Mistress (Text 2. in its sexual fulfillment. If… But… Therefore… Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. If the difference is considerable. in the Reader). which has the structure If…. read the poem again. but…. after revising subchapter 2. it can arrest the inevitable course towards physical extinction by a moment of ecstatic pleasure. Love can suspend the inexorable laws of nature. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 55 .8. What are the main ideas corresponding to these three steps? Formulate them succinctly in the space left below. paying attention to the logic of the argument. more carefully. then (therefore)….
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
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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”).
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King Lear SAQ 5 In the first place. etc. From Caliban’s point of view. complicated line of argument. to blend contraries (e. King Lear. F. This instrument. T. He thus expected Caliban to overcome his primitive impulses and to develop more civilised tendencies (“purposes”). he chose to raise Caliban to the condition of a rational creature. 2. 3. analytical detachment from emotion 4.e.g. 7. Hamlet. From Prospero’s point of view. concise expression and density of meaning 2. which remain perfectly united. SAQ 7 1. Othello. T. which would have enabled him to communicate (e. however. of a clean mind. through language (knowing his “own meaning”). Perfect circles (symbolising perfect love) may be traced by means of the compasses. F. passion and reason. usually between highly dissimilar elements. T SAQ 8 1. unable to find peace once it has been corrupted by evil. innocent conscience) is part of the natural order of man’s existence. the abstract and the concrete. “Sleep no more” anticipates the torments of Macbeth’s conscience. unexpected. of his own sense of self. 2. SAQ 6 Prospero might have better controlled Caliban in his “brutish” state. endowed with speech. is a suitable emblem for their souls. guided by rational will. 4. attempt to reconcile contradictory or discordant experiences. by keeping one foot fixed and moving the other round this centre.” sleep (i. which organises and “manages” intense feeling and emotion. and the horrible crime has immediate effects on his conscience. surprising associations) 3. he failed in his effort to enlighten Caliban. 3. the development of conscience. this hallucination proves Macbeth’s strong imagination. 6.The late Renaissance and the Baroque SAQ 4 1. because the latter’s nature was hopelessly evil.g. By 60 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . As “chief nourisher in life’s feast. 5. “The innocent sleep” is the symbol of moral integrity. led to his awareness of his condition as a slave. F. As a truly superior being.) SAQ 9 The poet associates mutual love with the way in which a pair of compasses works. 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”). Hamlet. which he resents. make his purposes known through words). 4. made of two moving legs articulated at one end. He is not a cold-blooded killer. Prospero seemed also to think that Caliban could be socialised through speech. Hamlet. 5. King Lear. use of conceits (extended comparisons. even if physically the lovers must be apart. Othello. T.
302-305) 3. 267-283. and which would resemble rape. since only worms will “enjoy” it. waiting for her departed lover. Boris (ed. which would restore the purity of his faith (being “chaste”). A Critical History of English Literature. in fact. 97-105. instead of letting it devour us slowly. 273-287) 2. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. vol. SAQ 10 Marriage is associated with love.).” Depending on the distance from the centre to the circumference. as the moving leg will “come home” and join its “twin. vol.The late Renaissance and the Baroque analogy. I would spend ages in praising every part of your body. Further reading 1. Your own passion “transpires” in the blush of your skin. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. 246-249. 34-40.. Preda. but the implication is that his will and reason are too weak to defend his faith. 1991 (pp. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”). will long for him. the metaphor of the speaker’s “marriage” to God’s enemy suggests his sense of sin. while rape presupposes the violation of one’s will. the inclination of the fixed leg may vary – it seems to “lean after” the moving leg. because your charms deserve such praise. just as the mistress. God would set him free for a complete experience of religious devotion. The speaker tries thus to persuade his mistress of his own constancy of feeling. He loves God. so let us devour Time with the intensity of our desire.” which only God can effect. your virginity will then be worth nothing. Taking him by force – by the force of the divine grace –. SAQ 11 If we had time enough and the world were all ours. Ioan-Aurel (coord. the poet’s love depends on the certainty of his mistress’s faithfulness and constancy: “Thy firmness makes my circle just. 1983 (pp. in the absence of joy. But I know time is merciless.” so there is always the certainty of reunion for the lovers. But. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. The only way out of his loveless “marriage” to sin is a “divorce. your beauty will fade and my songs of praise will have no object when you lie in your grave.). Daiches.. 3. David. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. Penguin Books Ltd. Therefore let us enjoy each other while we are still young and you are beautiful. consent and legality. Paradoxically. Ford. English Literature and Civilisation. 130-140) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 61 . however. 1969 (pp.
The works of John Milton UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON Unit Outline 3.2. 3. 3. 3. 3. 3.5. 1 Solutions and suggestions for SAQs Further reading 63 63 63 64 64 66 66 67 67 68 69 70 72 72 74 75 77 78 79 81 82 83 83 84 85 86 87 62 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .1.4. 3.6. 3. 22.214.171.124.1. 3.1.2. Unit objectives The Works of John Milton Milton. 3.5. 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. 3.2.4. 126.96.36.199.3. 3. 3. 3.5.3. the “author of all ill” Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.188.8.131.52.4.2. 3.4. 3. 184.108.40.206.1.
In 1638. the Christian humanist Milton is one of the most prominent figures of the 17th century. music. 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.g. After that. Christian faith and classical formal perfection. mathematics. recommended him for the office of Latin Secretary to the Council of State.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. His enormous learning. He returned to England when the troubles which were to lead to the Civil War* started. 63 John Milton (1608-1674) A man of impressive learning The Puritan patriot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which exerted a huge influence on many generations of poets. Milton had from an early age the conviction of his poetic vocation. Milton’s enduring reputation is ensured by his masterpiece. At Cambridge (1625-1629). etc. religious and civil debates of his age. the author of a work which represents a highly original synthesis of Renaissance humanism*. Milton. written in English and in Latin. he continued to read intensively. His education was eminently that of a Christian humanist.1.). baroque* vision. he studied Latin. and his acquaintance with the great artistic achievements of that country and with prominent personalities enriched his education and contributed to his erudition. he approached a diversity of subjects. theology. and he dedicated long years of study and preparation to his accomplishment as a creator. politics. He lived and created in an age of historical turbulence and profound change. family. and for almost twenty years he served their ideal of a truly reformed England. In his prose essays and pamphlets*. religion. as well as his moral inflexibility. rhetoric and the great works of the classics. Paradise Lost. etc. and the course of his literary career was consistently marked by his involvement in the political. accumulating an impressive knowledge in a diversity of fields (e. He devoted himself heart and soul to the cause defended by the Puritans*. the freedom of the press. Greek and Hebrew. and he made up his mind about his own position in the conflicts that agitated his country. as a publicist. the greatest epic poem in English literature. such as education. geography. he went on a trip to Italy.
In some of them. for instance. As in other poems. Virgil*. As a poet.The works of John Milton The Christian humanist poet a position that he occupied from 1649 until 1660. these two sides are usually kept apart in these poems. his political hopes ended. who. Milton follows Ovid in the emphasis on sensuous enjoyment. This poem was intended as the first in a series about the significant moments of the Christian year. They deal with contrasting moods of poetic inspiration. His models were the great Greek and Latin poets (Homer*. by his aspiration to be a Christian epic* poet. the Nativity Ode* is a landmark in his creation. is in touch with divine secrets. with its pastoral delights. and his first notable poems were seven Latin elegies*. as it is also an ambitious assertion of Milton’s own literary birth as a “poet-priest.2. in these poems Milton appears highly preoccupied by his poetic vocation. celebrating the birth (the “nativity”) of Christ and its inauguration of a new order for humanity. in the treatment of the theme of love and the use of Greek mythology. which already displayed the ambivalence in Milton’s poetic identity as both Christian poet and classicist humanist. to whose excellence he aspired to rise.2. Milton’s early poems Milton started writing poetry very early. in the optimism and exuberance accompanying the contemplation of reviving nature. approaching the great religious themes that enabled him to assert his genius. However.” The Latin elegies The Nativity Ode 3. Milton wrote with the same ease and grace both in English and in Latin. 3. like a priest. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso To Milton’s long years of preparation for the fulfilment of his vocation belong also two poems. Milton’s Christian humanism consists in this fusion of classical form and Christian themes. Milton’s first important poem in English on a religious theme was written in 1629: On the Morning of Christ’s Nativity. Milton places emphasis on the dignity of agricultural labour and the 64 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but Milton did not complete his plan. and he was perfect master of a variety of styles. L’Allegro describes a day – from morning till sunset – in the life of the cheerful man. etc. In the Sixth elegy. On the other hand. Ovid*. the pastoral* image of the shepherd becomes a metaphor for the poet-priest engaged in the exploration of high Christian themes. in the perfect integration of classical allusion and pagan mythology with Christian spirituality. which are in fact complementary: L’Allegro [“the cheerful man”] and Il Penseroso [“the pensive/melancholy man”]. or the two sides of the poet’s soul. but his maturity and experience enabled him to bring to fulfilment the most important part of his poetic work. With the Restoration*.1. As his poetic personality gained in self-confidence. he started to move away from themes and concerns which were defining for the classicist spirit of the Renaissance.). However. He sought inspiration in biblical mythology.
you will thus review some aspects of Milton’s literary personality. The final part of Il Penseroso expresses the poet’s aspiration of attaining visionary power. SAQ 1 Make the right choice to continue each of the three beginning statements. In both poems. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 65 . the poet emphasises the blessings of the “pensive. Milton’s literary ambition was a. in his poetic work. b. There is both parallelism and contrast between the two poems. Milton’s Christian humanism is reflected in a.” in which the studious poet finds the gratification of intellectual experience. 1. c. he expects to discern in the heavenly notes a spiritual truth. The secular* pleasures of common life. gives way to the mystic exaltation of the poet-student listening to religious music. The diurnal activities and the cheerfulness of L’Allegro are replaced here by the nocturnal peace and quiet of the “lonely tower. but the “natural” music of L’Allegro (the song of the lark. c. 3. the diversity of subjects in his prose essays and pamphlets. If your choices should be wrong.2. In Il Penseroso. of classical erudition with biblical themes. and on the happiness of rural life. Are Milton’s first poems in English which deal with a Christian theme. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. appropriate mythological allusions contribute to the creation of the atmosphere. there is a strong emphasis on music. in L’Allegro. In each poem. the poet hopes to hear “more than is meant to meet the ear” – i. revise subchapters 3.e. the song of the milkmaid) contrasts with the deep. the integration. the crowing of the cock. b. In the latter.1. L’Allegro and Il Penseroso a. to become a great epic poet of the Christian age. celebrate the diurnal pleasures of pastoral life and its activities. in Il Penseroso. with its simple pleasures.” contemplative mood. at the end of the unit. his constant preoccupation with his own poetic becoming.The works of John Milton satisfactions that it offers. to master a variety of styles. c. b. to rival the classics in his perfect mastery of Latin. and 3. polyphonic sounds of the organ. 2. are complementary poems about poetic inspiration and creative moods.
variety and originality in the use of this poetic form. uses again the pastoral frame. Milton adds a contemporary Christian relevance to the classical pastoral convention when he reflects on the corruption of the church. Irrespective of their nature. and the end of the elegy brings in a note of personal confidence. The death of a promising young man makes the poet meditate on existential problems. He wrote sonnets intermittently throughout his life. 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. the shepherdpoet’s consolation is in his own sense of purpose. The elegy Lycidas. in two of his sonnets he reveals these anxieties in a direct. representing both himself and his dead mate as shepherds. to fresh woods and pastures new. Milton composed another poem in which. The answer to such questions enlarges the frame of the pastoral elegy: the true reward for both merit and vice is in heaven. The death of the dedicated young man. which had known a period of decline since the Elizabethan age*.2. not on earth. and they were either testimonies of personal experience and feeling.2. 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. he defines his poetic ambition in terms which are both Christian and classical-humanist. written at the death of a fellow-student at Cambridge. If in other poems of Milton’s early career this thought is expressed more obliquely. in his determination to carry on with his task and do each day’s work: “Tomorrow. Milton’s sonnets Milton revived the tradition of the sonnet*. may appear unjust in a world in which corrupt priests prosper and accede to high offices.3. The lamenting poet finds comfort in the thought that the soul of the dead friend is now with God.The works of John Milton 3. Milton’s sonnets demonstrate a remarkable flexibility. or occasional and complimentary compositions. preparing himself seriously for becoming a priest. 66 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . personal manner. Milton’s concern with his poetic fulfilment 3. again. in a heavenly pastoral world.” Lycidas shows Milton again preoccupied by his own becoming a poet. Confronted with the tragic inevitability of death. Lycidas – a pastoral elegy In the same year with L’Allegro and Il Penseroso (1637). 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.
that the unfolding of his poetic destiny is not only a matter of time.3. he admits. as King of Heaven. Milton laments the passing of his youth without any sign of poetic ripeness. When he wrote Sonet XVII. since. In the first part of the sonnet. The life of study and leisure that the poet had been leading was a period of prolonged apprenticeship*.2. The only thing that matters is that he should have “grace to use it so. that. he Paradise Lost to commands “thousands” (of spirits. in another poem of this kind (Sonnet XVII). To prevent such a complaint. but he had not fulfilled his great poetic promise. i.” that they are “timely happy spirits”.” By this time.” with no “bud or blossom” to promise ripe fruit. it does not matter if this task is fulfilled soon or late. Patient and dignified waiting for God’s will to be fulfilled is also a way of serving Him. in 1652. Milton was still invoking Patience to avoid the anxiety caused by his feeling of “unripeness.” to carry out the task in such a way as to make his achievement count in eternity. God: the poet’s “great taskmaster” 3.” It would be arrogance to think that God needs “either man’s Milton dictating work or gift” to assert His greatness. As a Christian poet. angels). but also by Christian humility. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 67 .1. patiently. Sonnet XVII After almost twenty years. Sonnet VII In Sonnet VII (“How soon hath time”). If he is to transcend time by literary fame. by the acceptance of one’s fortune – of God’s “mild yoke. He has reached the age of twenty four. In Sonnet XVII. but of God’s eternal will. and the theme of blindness was to accompany the great themes of his coming masterpieces.e. he must admit.3. Patience – a Christian virtue – teaches him that God is served not only by actions. Since for God time is in fact eternity (“All is…as ever” in God’s eye). and confronts the evidence of a “late spring.” “mean or high” as it may be. Milton’s eye-sight was definitively compromised. he had asserted himself as a successful publicist. confessing his temptation to ask.The works of John Milton 3. foolishly: how can God expect him to fulfill his task if He has decided to make him blind? (“Doth God exact daylabour. but finds consolation in his faith in Providence. other young men have demonstrated “inward ripeness. A sad biographical circumstance increased Milton’s anxiety in this respect: he was going blind. in which the accumulation of knowledge was meant to create a solid foundation for his future great work. they have been fortunately able to prove their maturity at the right time. Lamenting the loss making his political and religious views known in a series of influential of his eyesight essays. who carry out the divine his daughters will. Milton meditates on his loss of sight. with a certain sadness. written in 1631. Milton has the strong sense that his poetic accomplishment is a task imposed by God (his “great task-master”). 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. light denied?”). and that the passing of the time will eventually confirm if he is destined for glory. at his age.
As the several Invocations in the poem suggest.2. and 3. which in Sonnets VII and XVII is the same. when he was already blind.2. Virgil. read again subchapter 3. 3. and the two sonnets.1. Dante* –.” He had always dreamed of reaching the stature of the great epic poets that were his models – Homer. If there should be significant differences. paying attention to what their octave and sestet deal with. the passages stored in his mind were transcribed after his dictation. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. completing it in 1665 and publishing it in 1667. and it represented the fulfillment of his ambition to write an epic which would be “doctrinal to a nation. respectively. This formal pattern usually corresponds to a certain thematic structure. What is the common thematic development in these two sonnets? Your answer should not exceed 8 lines/80 words. he expected the inspiring Muse to compensate for his physical blindness with a 68 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Paradise Lost – the Christian epic Milton began the composition of his masterpiece in 1657. at the end of the unit. His blindness was no obstacle – as he advanced in the composition of the poem. in the Reader).4. Read these sonnets (Texts 3. and he worked at it over several years.The works of John Milton SAQ 2 Milton adopted the form of the Italian sonnet. and of leaving to posterity an undying work. made up of two sections: an octave (an eight-line stanza) and a sestet (a six-line stanza). Paradise Lost was the fruit of long years of preparation and meditation.3.
happiness and peace they had enjoyed in Heaven. the creation of the world and of man. knowledge and ignorance/innocence. in theme a daring. His work is encyclopaedic. These problems may be summarised by the alternative freedom vs. Milton approached in his grandiose epic problems which provoked heated polemics in his time. The twelve books which make up Paradise Lost unfold an impressive epic action. Milton had thought. in fact. “to justify the ways of God to men. but by Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 69 . obedience and rebellion. in which man’s fall. as he stated in the opening Invocation. enemy]” who “holds the tyranny of Heaven. and of Adam and Eve Lost from Paradise.4. with the poet’s invocation of the Muse. the fault with The Felix culpa happy consequences.e. Milton’s ambition was. etc. man’s temptation and fall into sin. brought about by his disobedience. Satan and the fallen angels in Hell The poem begins in conventional epic manner. are gathered to listen to Satan.” He suggests to his followers that their “work” should no longer be done by force – since that is the attribute of the Almighty –.1.The works of John Milton more penetrating understanding of spiritual truths. he decided on the subject of the Fall – the theme of Paradise double fall. but his erudition. (divine) love and (Satanic) hatred. an evil which is turned to good in God’s overall plan for the history of creation.” full of the bitterness of defeat. He interprets poetically the biblical events. Starting from the dualism good/evil. the greatest synthesis of the Western literary tradition. Satan is determined to wage “eternal war” to his “grand Foe [i. Paradise Lost defines Milton best as a Christian humanist. 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 “lost Archangel. to “illumine” what is “dark” in him. predestination*.” as he anticipated in Il Penseroso.” forever deprived of the glory. Then the reader is plunged into the middle of the action: the fallen angels in Hell. Incapable of accepting the thought of submission and of his imprisonment in Hell. burning in the “darkness visible” of those “regions of sorrow. the poem develops an implicit debate on such contraries as freedom and tyranny. is subordinated to the poetic intensification or clarification of the main theme. accumulated throughout his life. is presented as a necessary moment in the “Eternal Providence*”. Its Christian frame absorbs and integrates Milton’s astonishing learning. which is never ornamental. of many possible subjects for his capital work – subjects inspired either from British or from The subject and biblical history. and his loss of Paradise. declares his hatred against God and his intention to regain Heaven. over the years. original epic scenario.” and the central theme of his poem is that of felix culpa* – the fortunate mistake. whose main moments are the fall of the rebel angels. of Lucifer* from Heaven. and thus to enable him to attain indeed to a “prophetic strain. 3. Finally.
and their discussions are rendered in Book II.” He thus anticipates the moment of the Temptation. the “wild abyss” governed by Night. death and resurrection. He contemplates with envy the beauty and the innocent happiness of Adam and Eve. whose setting is in Heaven. and plans to “excite their minds / With more desire to know. Chaos and Chance.The works of John Milton The council of the fallen angels “fraud or guile [i. and so “Heavenly love shall outdo [i. the overwhelming discord of the elements of a yet uncreated world.2.4. assumes the danger of trying to break free from the formidable prison of Hell. explains to His Son the reason for his allowing this to happen. whose splendour is described more effectively through Satan’s jealous eyes. 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. set him free from sin.e. Divine justice and mercy Book IV: Satan’s arrival in the Garden of Eden 70 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Pandemonium*. 3. The accepted solution is to reach the new world created by God. and He commands His angels to adore and celebrate man’s Saviour and “universal king. God.e. knowing in advance that Satan will be successful in his attempt to “pervert” man. by virtue of his leading position. concentrates the doctrinal argument of the poem.” God anticipates the event of His Son’s incarnation. is rendered in one of the most highly poetic passages in the poem. His voyage through the great gulf separating Hell from Heaven.e.” Meanwhile.” and to make them transgress God’s interdiction of tasting the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge. the ascension from darkness to the light of his “native seat” – now forbidden to him –. cunning]. Satan. The corruption of God’s creation was thought better than any kind of revenge. Satan has reached the Garden of Eden. to seek the newly created Earth. and the only way to satisfy divine justice is a sacrificial death that would redeem man. God’s Son offers to pay this price for the reconciliation of man to his heavenly Father. The divine foreknowledge of the Fall Book III. surpass] hellish hate. to find the weakness of man and to seduce him to join their party. in which his success was due to deceit and dissimulation. i. Satan also tells his companions of a prophecy according to which a new world and a new kind of creature were to be brought into being by God. The fallen angels are all called to a council in Satan’s infernal palace. Man’s sin of disobedience must be punished justly. and he flies away.
more carefully. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and what are its implications? Answer in no more than 15 lines/150 words.The works of John Milton SAQ 3 Read Text 3. If there should be major differences. in the Reader. at the end of the unit. which contains God’s justification for allowing man to fall. read again the text.4. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 71 . What is God’s argument.
4. both in the large-scale description of the making of celestial bodies or in the sublime picture of the primal waters. He draws Adam’s attention that God has made him “perfect.” for the evocation of the making of the world. and in the description of more familiar details of earthly Nature. so that he may know more about his enemy. not before repeating his warning. the divine creation took place after the fall of Lucifer. Raphael tries to restrain Adam’s curiosity about “things above this world. and he explicitly warns Adam: “remember. the “divine historian. not immutable [i. Adam is grateful to Raphael.The works of John Milton 3. and fear to transgress!” 3. and wishes to know more about the celestial motions. visits Adam in Paradise to warn him about the danger from Satan. and most evident in the treatment of the fall of Adam and Eve. The creation of the world Raphael also tells Adam the story of the creation of the world and of man.4. with her “absolute” loveliness and grace. whose pride had been hurt when God proclaimed His Son the “Messiah. and its impulse was God’s desire to create “good out of evil.3. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural The divine creation: Good coming out of Evil 72 . sweetness. Adam admits that. Raphael once again advises him against trying to penetrate the secrets of the “great Architect.4. without aspiring to know things above his power of understanding. sent by God.” Man himself was created as a “better race.” and that this happiness depends on his free will. King Anointed*”.” and reminds him that obedience to his Maker means enjoying the present happy state. in Milton’s poem. 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. after the defeat of the rebel angels. The rest of Book V and Book VI are a retrospective account of the war in Heaven. and about his perfect happiness in the company of “divinely fair” Eve. Adam asks Raphael to tell him the story of the fallen angels. in order to prolong his guest’s visit. 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. Raphael’s warning to Adam In Book V. The six days of the biblical Genesis are developed by Milton into an impressive poetic vision.” Raphael leaves them.e.” to fill in the “vacant room [i. It is interesting that. In Book VIII.e. instigated by Lucifer. in the multitude of its phenomena and living forms. Satan. space]” left by the fallen angels.” He explains to Adam that true wisdom lies in the desire to know those things which directly concern one’s own being. Milton displays an extraordinary evocative power. The idea of Good coming out of Evil is central to Paradise Lost. he tells him about his own experiences after he was created. and. In Milton’s interpretation. the angel Raphael. in Book VII. that cannot change]. as this diminished W. innocence and “virgin modesty. Blake: The downfall of the his own power and pre-eminence.
1794) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 73 . A Prophecy. at the end of the unit. in no more than 10 lines/100 words. Blake: Urizen as the creator of the material world (from the poem Europe. more carefully. What does Milton suggest by the image of God using his “golden compasses”? Answer in the space below.7. W. and the “Spirit of God” infusing life into the primal ocean. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.The works of John Milton SAQ 4 Text 3. read the fragment again. If your answer should differ significantly from the offered suggestions. in the Reader presents. the first moments in the creation of the world: the making of heavens and skies. through Raphael’s words.
Adam and Eve have a difference of opinion: Eve insists that they should divide their daily labour and work in different places. Credulous Eve tastes from the forbidden fruit and tries to convince Adam that its effect is not to open the way to “evil unknown. hate / Mistrust. is now troubled by the “higher winds” of negative passions – “anger. and all The effects of Nature is in pain. 1827) 74 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the thundering skies weep.” Back to guarded Paradise in this disguise.The works of John Milton 3. and.e. Book IX: Eve and the Serpent (illustration by John Martin. The disaster of the original sin shakes the foundations of the natural order: Earth trembles. certain that the proud tempter will not be successful. since the “link of nature” is so strong between them that he cannot imagine living without her. Their former innocent sensuality is now replaced by guilty lust and the feeling of shame. the “subtlest [i. suspicion. Satan gives voice again to his torments and to his ambition of destroying God’s creation. most subtle*] beast of all the field.” she is finally seduced by his promise of higher knowledge and by his assurance that there is no sin in such aspiration. their inward the fall on Nature peace.5.” but to “open eyes” and bring those who taste closer to the condition of a god. discord” – which make reason and will helpless. The seduction of Eve Book IX presents the great scene of Eve’s seduction by Satan. At last. for a moment. while Adam tries to convince her that together they would be more safe from harm.4. flattered by his praise of her “celestial beauty. her argument wins: she is willing to put her innocence to trial. Meanwhile. Eve is amazed at the miracle of a beast capable of speech and. Blake: Satan finds Eve alone. W. but he regains the strength of his hate and appears to Eve (1808) her in the splendid shape of the Serpent. and all harmony between them is destroyed by bitter reciprocal accusations. Adam is chilled with horror at Eve’s irresponsible mistake but decides to share her fate. whose spirit has entered the body of a serpent. he is disarmed by her Satan with Adam and angelic grace. The “calm region” of their state of mind.
from the speech by which Satan tempts Eve into disobeying God and eating the forbidden fruit. He tempts Eve with the promise of absolute knowledge. 3. which marks the conquest of the world by Satan. a. _______ f. by inciting her to disbelieve God’s threat. on a separate sheet. read once more the indicated text and do the exercise again. He tries to dispel Eve’s fear of death. 75 Book X: the world open to Sin and Death Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but His fear that His power might be weakened if His creatures equalled him in knowledge. He tries to introduce into Eve’s mind the doubt about God’s being “the author of all things. _______ d. in the middle of this speech. annihilate Sin and Death. Seduced by the illusion of the Tree of Knowledge. Write the number(s) of the corresponding fragment(s) in the indicated space. Milton continues to expand moments of the biblical Genesis. such as the building of a huge bridge across chaos by Sin and Death. He tries to arouse Eve’s suspicion that God’s reason for His interdiction may not be man’s own good. at the end of the unit. as God himself predicts: His Son. _______ c.6.The works of John Milton SAQ 5 Text 3. in the Reader contains four fragments from Book IX. at last. Satan’s victory seems complete. Match these sentences with the fragment. He flatters Eve. or fragments. but are terribly humiliated to find that they are tasting only dust and ashes. but he also adds symbolic episodes. He denigrates God. _______ e. the destined “restorer of Mankind*. This emphasises the idea that Satan’s victory is not final.4. If any of your matches should be wrong. the whole assembly of fallen angels are temporarily turned into monstrous hissing snakes and dragons.” is the one who will. accusing Him of keeping Adam and Eve ignorant so that He may hold them in a state of servitude. He tries to awaken in Eve the spirit of defiance and insubordination. but.8. The sentences below describe various moves in Satan’s strategy of seduction. the consequences of man’s original sin are unfolded in episodes of great poetic and emotional intensity. _______ b. The world after the Fall In the next books. and he proudly boasts of it in the Pandemonium. in which these moves are illustrated. _______ Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of each sentence.” _______ g. which will bring her close to the condition of God. they taste its fruit. hoping to arouse her pride.
In Book X. changed drastically after Adam’s fall. who can see the “many shapes of Death” and the many ways that lead to it. evil will finally be turned to good makes Adam and Eve’s exile from Paradise more tolerable. The vision is replaced by Michael’s narrative in Book XII. Adam suffers deeply for the loss of his native place and of God’s proximity. The certainty that. combining thus justice with mercy. 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. God sends Him to communicate the divine punishment to Adam and Eve. Book XII: Adam and Eve leaving Paradise (illustration by John Martin. resurrection and ascension to the coming of Heaven. In Book XI. asking God to accept their prayers and sincere repentance. but of sadness. and the poem closes not on a note of despair. redemption*: Jesus. Moments of the biblical history are unfolded before Adam’s eyes. through Christ. but He decides that Adam and Eve may no longer live in Paradise. and He sends the archangel Michael to God decides Adam and Eve’s expulsion show them out. – to the hostility of Nature. from Heaven Before they leave Paradise. intemperance. but Michael comforts him. The promise of where the central episode is the promised birth of God’s Son. from man’s own vices – violence. 1827) 76 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Michael shows Adam a vision of the future. faith and good deeds. the Son of God acts as a mediator between the sinful humans and His Father. the emphasis on the presence and role of the Son of God increases. and offering to pay the price of His own death for the peace between God and mankind.” founded on love. pride. God consents. his suffering. an anticipation of the effects of the original sin on the following generations. etc.The works of John Milton After the story of man’s fall. death.
while Adam has more in common with a tragic hero. If they should differ in major points.5. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit.The works of John Milton SAQ 6 Text 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. read the fragment again. It may be argued. in the Reader represents the ending of Paradise Lost. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 77 . 3. 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. however.9. more carefully. The heroes of Paradise Lost Many critics have remarked the paradox that the heroic spirit of Milton’s epic is embodied in Satan. which they fully assume.
1. the Romantic poets were to establish the view that Satan is actually the main hero. Satan appears indeed as a champion of freedom. and his extraordinary courage “never to submit or yield” inspires his followers. in whom they saw an embodiment of the spirit of freedom and of resistance to tyrannical oppression.” only the pain of longing and unfulfilled desire. William Blake remarked that Satan is Milton’s most accomplished creation. He is envious Envy and hate of God’s Son and His title as King of Heaven.” He instigates the other angels to rebellion in the name of freedom from servitude.e. “great in power / In favour and pre-eminence. since it is accompanied by suffering and torment. and his longing for the delights of his former existence torments him like an inner hell. but for him freedom does not mean equality: among the rebel angels. but he also knows that this freedom is a form of punishment. made happy in their innocent love. unwilling to serve a power that he considered tyrannical. Before his fall. Pride is one of Satan’s most prominent features in Pride and ambition Paradise Lost. This is why he is in a continual state of frustration and anger.” as he cannot help comparing their bliss with his own condition in Hell.The works of John Milton 3. In Hell. Satan seems to comfort himself with the thought that at least he is free. where there is “neither joy nor love. he had been the first Archangel. and that Milton gave the full measure of his literary genius in the character of Satan because he instinctively supported the idea of freedom. 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. Milton’s Satan: the rebel’s inner hell The most fascinating of Milton’s heroes is undoubtedly Satan. He displays majesty and grandeur even in his fallen condition. This sight is for him “hateful” and “tormenting. Over a century after the poem’s publication. In moments when the fallen angels feel despair at having lost Heaven. From the beginning of the poem. and his great ambition is “to reign. Satan knows how to inflame again their ambition of re-ascending and their thirst for revenge. and he finds inner strength only in the intensity of his hatred. he naturally assumes the role of a leader.5.” Envy accompanies Satan’s thirst for power. which is itself a paradise. 78 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . he is envious of God’s omnipotence. “Imparadised in one another’s arms” – i.
The works of John Milton 3. and he invests all his titanic energies in his destructive plan.” seeming reasonable and true. Satan represents the negation of the creative power of the divine Word: his revenge is accomplished not by force. but by the evil subtlety of his mind and the corrupting power of his word.2.” He is “the author of all ill. Satan. 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. It is with “high words. His “immortal hate” makes revenge his only aim. he is the promoter of suspicion and doubt. As God’s absolute antagonist.” in whose destruction he finds complete satisfaction for his hurt pride.” and the “Enemy of Mankind. but the epic poet insistently underlines their manipulative intentions.” which actually lacked substance that he manages to revive the courage of the depressed fallen angels. Milton insists on the fact that they abandoned “the eternal splendours of Heaven” and followed Satan seduced by his promises of freedom and greatness. Awakening in man the impulse to question. Satan can assert his freedom of action only in the sphere of evil. Satan’s speeches have an impressive convincing force. Satan’s greatness as a character comes from the sublime intensity of his negative passions.5. He is determined “to do ill” – which is “the contrary to his high will” – or to pervert the good done by God. and “out of good still to find means of evil. that he determines Eve to break the divine interdiction. The temptation of Eve is in fact the repetition of the earlier act of persuading the angels to join him in his rebellion. It is also with “persuasive* words. and his power of seduction comes from the mastery of a very efficient rhetoric. The negative power of rhetoric: Satan the Tempter Gustave Doré: Satan (1870) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 79 . Satan is The Tempter. the destroyer of faith.
in Hell. “A mind not to be changed by time or place. and read the indicated fragment again.2. 80 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Read the whole fragment carefully. at the end of the unit. a Hell of Heaven”? (Answer in no more than 4 lines/40 words. in the Reader contains a part of Satan’s speech before his followers.5..3. His words reveal some of the defining features of Milton’s hero.1. and 3.” (6 lines /60 words) Compare your answers with those offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If there are significant differences. and in itself / Can make a Heaven of Hell. “and “The mind is its own place. and point out what features of Satan’s nature are illustrated by the following lines: A.The works of John Milton SAQ 7 Text 3.) B. “Better to reign in Hell than serve in Heaven.5. revise subchapters 3.
” “mother of human race. of their wrong use of the freedom given by God. there is not any doubt left about his fundamental evil.” Eve is the “Mother of Mankind. In his last conversation with Michael. The way in which Milton refers to Adam and Eve throughout the poem points out his reverence to the original pair. Both Adam and Eve display a certain Satanic fascination with the possibility of overcoming their condition through knowledge. He is now able to understand God’s final purpose.e. as well as his identification with them in their condition of creatures that have fallen.” “our general mother. Adam’s enlarged understanding emerges in perfect fusion with his strengthened faith. Milton’s depiction of Adam and Eve Poetically. the sorrow of the fallen humans at their own weakness and their final recognition of their fault entitles them to God’s mercy. the protagonists of Milton’s ambitious epic leave it not in hopeless disgrace. are set against Adam and Eve’s lamentations after the fall. of understanding and accepting his limits. As a Christian. the titanic dimension of his suffering.” “Our Author. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 81 . but who can hope for redemption*. the character of Satan is Milton’s greatest achievement in Paradise Lost. ancestor. The consequences of their fall are great because their virtues – so tragically tested – are great. and Milton expresses both admiration and compassion for them.” “Our great Progenitor [i. but armed with the wisdom of faith.” The insistent use of the adjective “our” suggests Milton’s invitation to the reader to join him in his identification. gifted with reason – a divine Eden 1808) attribute –. man has paid a terrible price for the wisdom of not imitating Satan. Milton depicts Adam and Eve’s fall not as the result of depravity. He has the revelation of the grandeur of God’s plan and of the “goodness infinite” of the Creator.5. Although Paradise has become a forbidden place for them. There is a tragic combination of greatness and weakness in their portrayal. in Book XII.The works of John Milton 3. Satan’s torments in Hell. Adam is called Sire* of Men. But it is an evidence of Milton’s genius that. deprived of worth. Milton is the heir of the Renaissance in his glorification of man and his virtues. Fallen man is not a hateful creature. He is now more aware of his freedom and his potentiality. he justifies “the ways of God to men” by showing the necessity of the divine grace. but W.” but also “our credulous mother. precursor]. but as a consequence of their wrong choices. As a humanist. Blake: The expulsion from Milton deals with it as one of the central paradoxes of the human condition.3. of turning all evil into good by the supreme act of divine grace: the acceptance of Christ’s sacrifice for man.” “Patriarch of Mankind. Created in God’s image. While Satan’s pain is always accompanied by the proud defiance of God. in spite of the fascination and seductive power with which he is invested.
and the twin poems L’Allegro and Il Penseroso. he prepared himself for it during long years.The works of John Milton SAQ 8 Text 3. The same obsession with poetic ripeness may be found 82 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in which he explains to His Son why the fall of man was inevitable. Read this fragment and summarise its argument. Subchapter 3. His work is that of a Christian humanist: his astonishing classical erudition and his aspiration to the formal perfection of his classical models combine with his interest in religious themes. you are recommended a more careful reading of the indicated text. the pastoral elegy Lycidas. Convinced also of his poetic vocation. Devoted to the Puritan cause during the Civil War. Some of Milton’s earlier works display this obsessive concern with his becoming a great poet. in no more than 8 lines/80 words.2. contains a fragment from God’s speech in Book III. If there should be major differences. Compare your answer with that offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in the Reader. at the end of the unit. Summary In this unit. the Nativity Ode. presents some of his notable early compositions – the Latin elegies. you have been acquainted with some aspects of the prominent literary personality of John Milton. Milton was deeply involved in the religious and political debates of mid-17th century. a necessary part of His design.5. one of the greatest English poets.
presented in subchapter 3. but also in which man may. Civil War: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.4. Adam and Eve are treated both with the typical Renaissance admiration for man’s potential and virtues. The central events in Milton’s epic are the fall of Lucifer and of the rebel angels. Milton justifies the fall of man and his exile from Paradise in the context of a providential history. and with the Christian compassion for their unhappy choice. and the promise of man’s reconciliation with God through the sacrifice of Christ.5. his love of freedom. be tested for the responsibility which must accompany the exercise of his free will.The works of John Milton in two of his sonnets. put in the service of evil. the creation of the world and of man. the most fascinating and complex creation is Satan – Lucifer in his fallen condition. The declared aim of Milton’s epic is “to justify the ways of God to men. Subchapter 3. as a sign of consecration or sanctification. Satan is dominated by powerful negative passions which keep him the prisoner of an inner hell. offers a brief presentation of the subject and structure of the poem. at any time. his courage and majesty. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 83 . apprenticeship: the training for a trade or for any kind of activity.3. and the culmination of his poetic achievement as a Christian humanist. Subchapter 3. His destructive energy represents a negation of the creative power of the divine word. concerns itself with Milton’s heroes in Paradise Lost. however. In Milton’s vision of the original sin. which interprets poetically key moments in biblical history and elements of biblical mythology. which are. Baroque: see the Glossary in Unit 2.” and its great Christian theme is that of felix culpa. in which divine grace will eventually turn all evil into good. Milton emphasises his fortitude and strength of will. Milton’s impressive epic poem Paradise Lost (1667) is the fruit of his mature vision. Undoubtedly. the fall of man and the loss of Paradise. 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.
The word may refer. redemption: the deliverance (the rescuing) of man from sin through the incarnation. Purgatory and Paradise.C. Gallery of personalities • Dante: Dante Alighieri (1265-1321). humanism: see classical revival in the Glossary in Unit 1.e. In classical literature. Roman poet. every. to convince. benevolent care or protection of his creatures. to whom are attributed the great epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey. pastoral: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. to a place of wild confusion. foreknowledge: knowledge of something before it happens. subtle: not immediately evident.The works of John Milton • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • elegy: a meditative poem lamenting the death of someone. Man’s sin/fault was “happy” because its reward was Christ. Providence: God’s kindness. the allegorical account of the poet’s journey through Hell. noise and chaos. Pandemonium: a word coined by Milton (from Greek pan: all. Italian poet. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. author of La Divina Commedia. Lucifer: the name of the archangel who led the rebel angels. felix culpa: this phrase comes from a line in the Latin version of the Catholic religious service held on Easter Sunday.-17 A. formerly used when speaking to a king. epic: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. secular: related to worldly things (as opposed to sacred).” After the fall from Heaven. pamphlet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.e. Homer: Greek poet (c. ode: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. the act by which God determines in advance the events and their course. the range of subjects in an elegy was wider. or some tragic event. 800 B.). persuasive: having the power or ability to persuade (i. and daimon: demon) – the place where all demons gathered. Ovid: Publius Ovidius Nasso (43 B. suffering and death of Christ. clever in using tricks. guided by Virgil and his idealised love Beatrice. It means “the carrier of light. sonnet: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.D. difficult to detect (or analyse). Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural • • 84 . the “great and good redeemer” (i.). he is called Satan. It may also mean cunning. to cause to believe). Sire: a respectful term of address. the one who sets man free from sin). not concerned with or related to religion. Puritans: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. whose works include the poem on love Ars Amatoria and the poem on myths Metamorphoses.C. predestination: from a theological point of view. by extension. Restorer of Mankind: Christ as the one who will return (restore) man to God’s grace and to his original condition.
4. Texts 2. Identify his conflicting feelings and the various thoughts that trouble his conscience. 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. Text 3.1. and thus of destroying man. Send-away assignment no. A revision of subchapter 3. which reveals the complexity of Milton’s hero.2. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. 40 lines/400 words should be enough for your answer (apart from the lines that you are expected to quote for illustration).2. In both of them. the baroque motif of the theatrical illusion is developed. in Milton’s Paradise Lost. 1 This assignment covers Unit 2 and Unit 3. in the Reader represent short fragments from Shakespeare’s Macbeth and The Tempest. what is the difference in the implications of the two play-metaphors? The answer to these questions should not exceed 25 lines / 250 words. You will thus be drawing a portrait of Milton’s Satan.C. Macbeth delivers his monologue immediately after he is informed about Lady Macbeth’s death. whose epic poem The Aeneid relates the experiences of Aeneas after the fall of legendary Troy. You will find it helpful to read again subchapter 2. in Heaven • his oscillation between remorse and pride • his oscillation between self-justification and self-blame for his rebellion against God • his consideration and rejection of the possibility of rehabilitating Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 85 . with special attention to the indicated subchapters. 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. His speech reveals Satan’s tormented mind and the multitude of passions that agitate his soul. At the beginning of Book IV. before the final battle.2. It will be therefore advisable to revise the preceding unit.). in which he explores his inner hell. before he firmly decides to carry out his evil plan.5.1.3. one of the greatest Roman poets. the paragraphs about Macbeth in 2.The works of John Milton • Virgil: Publius Ovidius Maro (70-19 B. romantic in The Tempest –. and the last paragraph of 2.. 1..6. and 2. 2. God’s creation. • What characteristic baroque theme do both fragments illustrate? Given the different context – tragic in Macbeth. Satan prepares himself to enter Paradise and to accomplish his diabolical design of tempting Eve. in the Reader renders most of his memorable monologue. at the end of the play. Prospero’s speech closes the representation given in honour of Ferdinand and Miranda. • Read attentively this fragment. either with remarkable lucidity or blinded by his hate and ambition.
SAQ 2 In the first section (the octave).. but the consequence of evil influence. like that of the angels. God cannot use His infinite power and knowledge to prevent the errors of those who are free to choose. Both man and the rebel angels are “authors to themselves in all. rational spirit of the Creator (he refers to Him elsewhere as “the great 86 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 3. however. responsible for his choices. as man’s wrong choice was not the pure result of his free will. The poet places his trust in Providence. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). the divine punishment is compensated by mercy (the sending of Jesus as mankind’s saviour).b. since that would mean the “revocation” of His own “high decree” by which man was made free. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. his blindness. in grading your paper. Created “just and right. The fall of man. comforting himself with the faith that his poetic destiny is in God’s hands. both sonnets deal with the theme of loss (the poet’s sense of the passing of time. SAA no. Remember that. or reason. not God.a. The implication is that God gave man conscience. 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. • the coherence.The works of John Milton • • himself before God his determination to turn his suffering into satisfaction his impressive self-knowledge The weight of this task in this SAA is 50%. The latter part of both sonnets (the sestet) changes the mood to one of patient confidence. clarity. i.” man shared the perfection of the angels (“the Ethereal Powers and Spirits”) and their complete freedom of will and judgment. is thus not attributable to God. and reason makes man.c. 1 will count as 10% in your final assessment.e. SAQ 3 God’s whole argument is based on the idea of freedom.” In the case of man. The paradox of freedom. the “instrument” by which to exercise his free will. 2. respectively) and with the anxiety that poetic fulfilment is late to come.. is that one may choose right or wrong. Milton emphasises the geometrical.
Man is not a free creature. This line illustrates both his aspiration to complete independence and his ambition. From Beowulf to Paradise Lost. These lines suggest Satan’s formidable strength of will and the independence of his indestructible spirit. He wants man’s obedience to be the result of an act of free choice. g.The works of John Milton Architect”). 1983 (pp. Ioan-Aurel (coord. as God has made him. 1969 (pp. His gift of Reason to man has no justification (it is “useless and vain”). and for him servitude in Heaven is the real hell. 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. 1. 435-449) 2. d. unless he is put in the situation of making choices.4. is meant to keep alive the memory of their transgression.). Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. 2 (“Shakespeare to Milton”).. David. vol. SAQ 8 God cannot be pleased with blind submission. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. Daiches. of human solidarity. Luminiţa Elena. Satan is willing to exchange the happiness of Heaven for the torments in Hell. with passive virtue. b. 2. faith and love untested. 2. but at least they have the mutual comfort of their love. 4 SAQ 6 For Adam and Eve. the intelligible and the unintelligible (the dark void). Incapable of obedience to God. i. Their hesitant steps suggest their awareness of the difficulty of all choice.3. 1. English Literature and Civilisation. c. Editura Universităţii Suceava.e. e. Further reading 1. SAQ 5 a. Paradise is now a forbidden place. under the guidance of Providence. Satan feels God’s absolute power as a limitation to his enormous ambition. 141-152) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 87 . 153-163) 3. who draws a firm line between the formed and the formless (chaos). guarded by fear-inspiring armed angels. to be dictated by Reason. and the image of the terrible gates. 2003 (pp. i. 2. The same rational spirit separates what is vital from what is “adverse to life” (the “infernal dregs”). Forced to look ahead. f. comforting himself that he exchanged submission for sovereignty. If Hell is a space of freedom. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. 2. SAQ 7 1. The Literature of the Beginnings. If God leaves man’s loyalty. Preda. It is his will and desire that give value to things around. of the responsibility that accompanies freedom. 3. unless he exercises his will and reason.4. Turcu. then it is like Heaven for a spirit that cannot accept constraints.e. A Critical History of English Literature.
4.3. 220.127.116.11. 4.1. 4. 4.4. 18.104.22.168. 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.The Restoration and the Augustan Age UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE Unit Outline 22.214.171.124. 4. 4.6. 4.4. 4.4. 4.4.1. 4. 4. 4. 4.1.3. Gulliver.126.96.36.199. 4.4. a master of satirical comedy of manners The rise of sentimental comedy English literary Neoclassicism Great Augustan writers: John Dryden and Alexander Pope Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics Nature and Reason The Augustan ideal of style “To divert and instruct” – the imperative of Augustan literature The periodical essay The Tatler and The Spectator.3. Unit objectives The Restoration and the Augustan Age Restoration drama Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment Dominant forms in Restoration drama Restoration comedy and its character types William Congreve.188.8.131.52.2.5.4. 4.2 4.4. 4.2.2. “The Spectator’s Club” Augustan satire John Dryden Alexander Pope Jonathan Swift The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia The fourth voyage.4. 4.1. 4. 4.2.
Alexander Pope. grandiose and extravagant in tragedies –. drama holds a place apart. The Renaissance tradition of the theatre as popular entertainment. ♦ identify the main concerns of literary Neoclassicism. The Puritans had closed theatres in 1642. its audience being restricted to the fashionable circles gravitating around the Crown. addressing itself to an inclusive public. the scenery became more elaborate – more “realistic” in comedies. ♦ establish a relation between the spirit of Restoration comedy and the cultural-historical circumstances in which it emerged. of increasing rationalism and secularisation. and Jonathan Swift. Restoration theatre – a form of Court entertainment In the heterogeneous literary picture of the Restoration.The Restoration and the Augustan Age By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify the favourite themes and the typical characters of Restoration drama. and. One of the most important aspects of this literary age is the shift from the baroque* sensibility of the late Renaissance to the Neoclassic ideal of order. the age in which the ideological premises of the Enlightenment were constituted. the cast of actors included women. with spectators no longer allowed to sit on it. Charles II Stuart (reign: 1660-1685) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 89 . Unit objectives 4. Restoration drama marked a clear split between popular and aristocratic standards of taste. Nature. and of considerable diversity. ♦ describe satirical devices used by John Dryden. under the influence of French theatres. ♦ specify the main targets of satire in Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels. Restoration drama The Restoration* was a period of significant social and institutional change. Significant changes took place in the theatre: the stage became closed on three sides. was interrupted: Restoration theatre became almost exclusively a form of Court entertainment. central to the Neoclassic poetics of the Augustan Age. under the patronage of king Charles II.1.1. ♦ explain the relevance of concepts like Art. From a literary point of view. and their re-opening in 1660. clarity and elegant restraint.1. it was a period of transition as well. was attended by a strong anti-Puritan reaction. 4. Human nature. ♦ 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.
lust.” reflecting the aristocratic ethos of the time. and its audience was restricted to the exclusive and fashionable circles in London. and the characteristic theme was the conflict between love and honour. and. Marriage and the games of love were a prevailing theme. 4. on the other. both of them highly conventional forms. The Puritan rigidity and austerity of the former period were repudiated. the licentiousness* and frivolity characterising Restoration comedy were accompanied by a cult for elegance. Gallantry. Another dominant dramatic form during the Restoration was the comedy of manners. sumptuous costumes. refinement and sophistication. Restoration comedy and its character types Restoration comedy was “class drama. wit*. but they were loveless marriages and love affairs without warmth and affection. and absolute villains. of incredible cruelty and perfidy. grandiloquent declamations and sentimental exaltation. ending in Heroic tragedy the death of the hero or heroine or both and the triumph of honour. were essential for the true man of the world. reflected the hedonism* and promiscuity encouraged at court by Charles II himself (nicknamed “the Merry Monarch” for his pleasure-loving way of life). jealousy. and satirised the aspiration of social climbing and the ideal of virtue and respectability of the middle classes. The highest achievement of this kind of baroque theatre was provided by John Dryden’s plays*. exotic places.1. Dominant forms in Restoration drama The main kinds of drama were heroic tragedy and comedy of manners. 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. betrayal and mockery were recurrent motives in the comic plots of Restoration drama. fashionable manners. Restoration comedies dealt primarily with sexual intrigue and the pursuit of pleasure – including the pleasure of cynical manipulation of others. and the plays of the Restoration Wits*.3. the 90 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The range of character types in Restoration comedy was very diverse.2. or Court Wits. ridiculing their crude manners and lack of sophistication. It made fun of the people from the countryside. Restoration comedy was a mirror of the Comedy of manners environment in which it developed. adultery. an artificial. The conception of character in Restoration comedy was indebted to the Renaissance comedy of humours*. Conquest and seduction. One of the most common types was the rake – the libertine. Sensational turns of situation.1. magnificent settings. the cynicism. above all.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Heroic tragedy* was a dramatic development from the epic poem. The action was usually set in remote. on the one hand. or in the survival of love over the criminal machinations of the villains. A certain coarseness of feeling. with characters conventionally distributed into fabulously valiant heroes and virtuous beautiful heroines. although each in its own way and for different reasons.
who tried to imitate fashionable manners. aspiring to the perfect adventure. selfish and manipulative. the ingénue. one of the first actresses and the mistress of Charles II William Hogarth* Detail from The Rake’s Progresss (1735) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 91 . the country squire*. etc. Nell Gwynn (1650-1687). the plot of Restoration comedy was usually highly complicated. with several subplots and with action developing at a fast pace. whose simplicity and ingenuousness made her a perfect prey to the sophisticated seducer. and the trusting husband as dupe. cynical. despising marriage. the scheming valet. but whose affectation* became the object of irony and satire.The Restoration and the Augustan Age “young-man-about-town. young or old. more concerned for his reputation as a wit than for honour. Contrasting types were the coquette. pleasure-seeking. usually an unprincipled and heartless married woman. Another frequent type was the fop*. the lusty widow.” without scruples. lacking complexity. If characters were usually static. whose generosity and kindness are satirised as weaknesses. or fool. deliberately superficial in construction. Other common character types in Restoration comedy were the country girl.
simple action. a master of satirical comedy of manners Among the most representative authors of comedies during the Restoration period there were George Etherege*. The Restoration rake as a typical character in comedy was representative for the atmosphere of licentiousness. elegance. who resorts to all kinds of devices to avoid 92 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . T F 4. refinement and sophistication. to 4. extravagant stage settings and highly rhetorical language. T F 7. If any of them should turn out to be wrong. The baroque character of Restoration heroic tragedy resided in its sensational plot. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). Heroic tragedy reflected the realities and spirit of the Restoration Age.3. Restoration comedy built its plot on a single. and satirised clumsy manners and dull simplicity. 1.1.1. frivolity. His satirical play Love for Love (1695) deals with the contrast between public reputation and private behaviour. Read the statements below and identify five true ones. such as the impoverished gallant. T F 9. read again subchapters 4.1.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 1 Let us revise some aspects concerning the Restoration drama. William Wycherley* and John Dryden*. The Renaissance comedy of humours inspired Restoration dramatists in their construction of dramatic character. 4. T F 5. It displays typical Restoration characters. William Congreve. hedonism and amorality at Court. Restoration theatre introduced professional women actors in performances. T F 6. T F 8. The true master of Restoration comedy of manners was William Congreve (1679-1723). T F 2.1. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. T F 3. by doing the exercise that follows. The middle classes and their moral code found a mirror in the comedy of the Restoration. The main themes of heroic tragedy were seduction and the games of love. Restoration comedy praised wit. at the end of the unit.4.
perfectly aware of each other’s faults and playing various games which keep them on the border between independence and surrender. The situation. The new audience in the theatres. psychologically subtle and complex. the witty and resourceful servant. It has a sophisticated plot containing several strands of action and centering on the relation between Mirabell and beautiful Millamant. consistent characters. disapproved of the licentiousness of Restoration comedy. involving a multitude of characters. bringing it to perfection.5. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 93 . Congreve’s merit is to have turned stereotypical characters into credible. admiration.The Restoration and the Augustan Age William Congreve (1679-1723) his creditors. when Augustan* England was seeking for social stability and cohesion. the ambivalent motivations and feelings (ranging from love. 4. the dramatic productions still preserved characteristic farcical elements and something of the brilliant artificiality of Restoration comedy. mixed marriages between aristocracy and the newly rich. hate and disgust) give this play an equivocal tone. Towards the end of the 17 th century. which reminds of some of Shakespeare’s comedies. He is the most gifted of the Restoration dramatists. but they were now clearly intended for a middle class audience. and it had to take into account the general concern for the improvement of manners that developed in the late 17th century. restore his fortunes and win the love of his mistress. A shift in taste was taking place in the context of social change – the rise of a prosperous class of merchants. increasingly middle class. The rise of sentimental comedy* Congreve belongs to a period of transition in the evolution of comedy. The indecencies and blasphemous spirit of earlier Restoration comedy became the object of severe condemnation by public opinion. is extremely complex. the pair of witty lovers. and were not interested in the rituals and games of fashionable life or in the sparkling wit duels. the awkward country-girl. half-sad. adopting a moralising tone and recommending virtue and sensibility above refinement and wit. and friendship to jealousy. Congreve’s finest comedy is The Way of the World (1700). affection. with a rare concern for the accuracy and elegance of expression and for the balance of sentences.1. Drama was changing under the pressure of middle class taste. as these were remote from their experience. half-amused. etc. He gave grace to the conventions of a highly artificial form of drama. and the shifting relationships and alliances.
4. at the end of the unit. What is the idea of marriage that her conditions suggest? Answer in the space below. In a witty dialogue.The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 2 In Congreve's play The Way of the World. their agreement has serious implications.. in Act IV.1. However. Millamant is also in love. which presents Millamant's demands. they establish and agree on the terms of a "contract. 94 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in no more than 15 lines / 150 words.1. read again subchapter 4. who is sincerely in love with Millamant and wishes to marry her. If there should be significant differences. Read Text 4. Mirabell is a reformed rake. under the appearance of frivolity. but she accepts Mirabell's marriage proposal on certain conditions. as well as the indicated fragment. they seem to be playing a game. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.." Presenting their expectations from each other in a half-joking way.
but it represents the quintessence of the Augustan literary ideal. The excellence of their literary work and the elegance and force of their critical arguments made them central figures of the Augustan Age. Oliver Goldsmith* and Samuel Johnson*.2. In both cases. Besides Dryden and Pope. English literary Neoclassicism* The Neoclassic aspiration for order. a society exhausted by civil wars was expressing its need for stability and moderation. or of the heroic couplet* over blank verse*. Alexander Pope brought to perfection Dryden’s achievements in poetic style and technique.1. other great writers who were influenced by Neoclassicism or defended its doctrine were Jonathan Swift*. elegance. 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*. Augustan England believed that a cultural idea of balance. Pope presents the basic concepts and theses of this literary orientation in a poetic form of remarkable elegance and clarity. in a series of essays and prefaces where he discussed matters of literary composition and taste and defended his own literary practice. of the elegant French classical drama over English Renaissance drama. and harmony extended beyond literature. His main critical work is An Essay on Dramatic Poesy (1668).The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. and propriety would favour the spirit of social unity and order and would contribute to the protection of the achievements of civilisation. John Dryden illustrated with masterpieces all contemporary literary genres. John Dryden (1631-1700) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 95 .2. In it. and he laid the foundations of modern literary criticism. 4. 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. such as the superiority of the Ancients over the Moderns. Joseph Addison*. in which he systematises his Neoclassic view on literary art. The dialogue form of this essay allows Dryden to avoid being dogmatic and to look with healthy scepticism at a wide range of critical issues. His work doesn’t equal in variety that of his predecessor and master. and Alexander Pope* in the 18 th . His didactic poem An Essay on Criticism (1711) is the most outstanding literary manifesto of English Neoclassicism. balance.
which in turn required good judgment and common sense. for the Augustans.e. a dignified diction. since it dealt with noble characters and actions. i. and to those patterns of behaviour. humble style.e. which were seen as common to all humanity and as permanent and unchanging. The quest for patterns of general significance through the study of particulars was not only a literary precept. and in order to do that accurately he was supposed to follow Reason as the main guide. The rule of decorum 4. who respected no particular rules and followed no particular models.. of infinite variety. the main source of inspiration for the writer was Nature*. The most eloquent example. required an elevated style. This was the case of the genius. and the poet might disregard them. skill. The concept of Human Nature referred to those features of human character and experience. The Neoclassic emphasis on the principles and rules that guided successful creation did not mean blind adherence to them. Following Nature presupposed first of all its understanding.2.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. which referred to the writer’s obligation to use those elements of diction* and composition which were considered proper for each genre. on the other hand. It was the existence of this rule of decorum that enabled Neoclassic authors to derive great effects from its deliberate. was expected to use a common. skilful transgression. A poet’s innate talent needed training. which usually presented ordinary people and actions. i. The Augustans were aware that the heights of literary achievement couldn’t be reached by simply learning the trade. the most valuable store of literary experience. Principles of Neoclassic literary poetics One of the most important features of literary Neoclassicism was the concern with rules and norms. in satirical or burlesque* works. to make form and substance adequate to each other. for instance. and whose creative power was a matter of intuitive genius and not of acquired art. lacking ornament.3. Nature and Reason According to the Neoclassic doctrine. and he could master the secrets of poetic art by the study and imitation of the works of ancient authors. yet achieve great beauty. that it was an inborn gift that made a poet. would lead to the revelation of the typical and universal features. was Shakespeare.2. whose imagination had nothing to do with training or learning. comedy. To follow / copy Nature was the writer’s main endeavour. by which the Augustans meant most frequently Human Nature.2. The study of human nature in its individual aspects. but a general intellectual tendency in the age. The belief in order and correctness was reflected in the neoclassic principle of decorum [from Latin: propriety]. Sometimes rules might be too constraining for this natural gift. the emphasis on discipline in art. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Human Nature 96 . Epic and tragedy.
a combination achieved through reason. in a paragraph of no more than 4 complex sentences (80-100 words / 8-10 lines). What are the main ideas in this fragment. and beauty was the result of the balanced combination of talent and inspiration with skill.3.g. The rationalist poetics* of Neoclassicism owed greatly to Horace*.The Restoration and the Augustan Age A rationalist poetics All the faculties involved in the process of creation were seen as subordinated to Reason. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.3. and the indicated fragment. and what Neoclassic conviction do they imply? Answer in the space below. in the Reader represents a fragment from Samuel Johnson’s Preface to his 1765 edition of Shakespeare’s works. read again subchapter 4.2. SAQ 3 Text 4. to those of Nicolas Boileau*. Emotion was supposed to be filtered and controlled by reason. If there should be significant differences. or art*. at the end of the unit. but also to imported French ideas – e. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 97 .
but also moral edification and standards of good judgment and behaviour. refinement with wisdom.2. or. It displayed flexibility skilfully controlled. eloquence with restraint. 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. A more straightforward style in prose was an imperative in an age so much concerned with education of mentalities.4. 98 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . of quick accumulation of information. “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.2. precision and clarity. and he was not supposed to withdraw in an ivory tower. 4. The writer's art was a form of social communication. “grace and strength united.5. It must not be forgotten that this was the age of the Enlightenment*. its effects were considerable on prose. affectation were rejected. as Oliver Goldsmith defined it. In the context of general progress. manners and taste. The Augustan ideal of style The suitable doctrine for the Age of Reason. This ideal of style is best summed up by the Augustan notion of wit. of critical debate in every field. with the cultivation of men’s best virtues through polite learning*. and the measure of the writer’s skill was his ability to convey an impression of “natural easiness and unaffected grace. the language of prose aimed more and more at simplicity. The periodical essay Although the normative poetics of Neoclassicism had in view mainly poetry and drama. but to be a functional part of the community. Literature was supposed to delight but also to instruct – to offer not only aesthetic pleasure.” Augustan wit 4. The periodical essay is the Augustan prose genre which contributed immensely to the forging of a modern prose style. Ostentation. too. of the belief in progress an in man’s perfectibility. and of the increase and diversification of the reading public. yet everything is extraordinary” (Thomas Sprat*). where nothing seems to be studied. unnecessary ornament. Neoclassicism cultivated an ideal of style characterised in the first place by intellectual clarity and expressive restraint. and which illustrated most eloquently the didactic impulse of all Augustan literature.3.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. Wit described a style which combined elegance with profundity.
as a reaction to the ever greater demand for political news and gossip. th Edward Lloyd’s coffee house. for a clientele of ships' captains. The reflections on both modern and ancient works. Journalism and coffee houses* were the main instruments by which people’s curiosity was satisfied. or to the discussion of literary matters. the enlightenment and the improvement of taste of its widest section.The Restoration and the Augustan Age It developed in the late 17 and early 18th centuries. they created an alternative kind of periodical publication. consisting in essays on a variety of topics. the middle class readers. the debate on a variety of critical and aesthetic issues made the latter familiar to the public. and they were published with varying regularity. merchants and ship owners 17th century coffee house in Covent Garden Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 99 . meant to provide guidance in matters of manners and morals. At the same time. that “a little knowledge is a dangerous thing. with Alexander Pope. In order to counterbalance this tendency. Some writers felt that this popular avidity for political news might inflame partisanship and favour a spirit of social discord. Many periodical essays were dedicated to the dissemination of philosophical and scientific notions. at cultivating their minds. the periodical essayists aimed at broadening the intellectual horizon of their readers. The periodical essay constituted a chronicle of contemporary manners and an effective instrument of moral and social criticism. contributing significantly to the “polite” education. some of them being issued daily. Essay periodicals were usually the work of a single author.” that ignorance is a source of evil. They believed. dominantly middle class. and to offer intellectual enlightenment to a wide audience. at a time when political tension in the country and the events of war on the Continent engaged public attention to a high degree. opened in 1688.
The Restoration and the Augustan Age SAQ 4 In one of his periodical essays. Think of present relevance of this remark. in no more than 12 lines / 120 words. 100 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Like other writers. think again and try to do the exercise once more. on a separate sheet.1. “The Spectator’s Club” Among the most important periodical essayists. at the end of the unit. Joseph Addison wrote: The mind that lies fallow* but [i. If they are significantly different. 4. whose essays were published several times in the century. and Joseph Addison’s The Spectator (1711-1714). collected in book form. were Richard Steele*’s The Tatler* (1709-1711). 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).e. Explain the analogy that his observation invites us to develop. only] a single day sprouts up* in follies that are only to be killed by an assiduous culture. The Tatler and The Spectator. To increase the efficiency of their undertaking.3. and by far the most popular ones. they tried to make their essays not only instructive but also attractive and amusing. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.
modest and commonsensical person. Sir Andrew Freeport’s convictions are those of an enlightened middle class. a competent justice of the peace*. a model of honesty. manners.” but whose life constitutes an eloquent example of moral integrity. idleness] has ruined more nations than the sword. who had to quit the military profession because his strict honesty proved to be an obstacle to the advancement of his career. His character is the first notable literary representation of the merchant class in a serious and dignified way. no longer as repulsively materialistic and greedy. otherwise harmless and a well-bred gentleman.e. an expert in fashion and gossip. interested in his appearance and displaying a certain affectation in behaviour. skills] and industry. • A gentleman who. a man of the world. he is a somewhat old-fashioned gentleman. for instance.e.” of wide learning. that “it is stupid and barbarous way to extend dominion by arms.” He thus embodies the Augustan humanist view that true knowledge of human nature comes from a combination of first hand experience and learning. 101 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in his county. a group of six fictional characters “engaged in different ways of life” and representing various social and human types. “a very philosophic man. generous and cheerful. an embodiment of its energies and enterprising spirit. steady effort] makes more lasting acquisitions than valour [i. but their good breeding qualifies them both for the same society of gentlemen. Steele and Addison invented The Spectator’s Club. “a person of indefatigable industry*. for true power is to be got by arts [i. Spectator” on their opinions and behaviour in a variety of circumstances constituted real lessons in manners and morals.” He is a worthy representative of the middle class. • Sir Andrew Freeport. ready to take responsibility for the progress of the nation. • Will Honeycomb. a middle-aged squire. and sloth [i. He believes. Now.e. and his harmless eccentricities are accompanied by a natural benevolence that endears him to everybody. taciturn and with “no interest in this world. as his father had intended for him. bravery in battle]. instead of pursuing the career of a lawyer. He is a man of “great probity. a rich London merchant. The six members of The Spectator’s Club were: • Sir Roger de Coverley. turned to the study of literature. Many essays presented little stories about incidents in their daily lives.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Joseph Addison (1672-1719) For example. hard work and skill. He is a pleasant company for his acquaintances in town. His wisdom and gravity are set against the frivolous interests of Will Honeycombe. for The Spectator. and great experience.” or that “diligence [i.” and “his familiarity with the customs. in which they collaborated. • A clergyman. and the reflections of “Mr. He is the prototype for the character of the country squire in many 18th century novels. laziness. strong reason.e. rather than a merit. wit and understanding. a courageous.” • Captain Sentry. a gallant. actions and writings of the ancients makes him a very delicate observer of what occurs to him in the world. who had spent a turbulent youth in the company of the Restoration Wits.
and write them in the indicated spaces below. read again subchapter 4. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. common sense.1. If there should be major discrepancies. Sir Richard Steele (1672-1729) 102 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . cheerful disposition. 4. 3. 5. SAQ 5 From the description of the members of the Spectator’s Club. it is clear that Addison promotes certain virtues. 2. 8. combining the external marks of social decency (pleasant conversation. a cultivated mind and superior understanding.The Restoration and the Augustan Age The gentleman represented an ideal of social behaviour. 6. 1. Identify at least eight such features. more carefully.3. 7. the talent of never offending the others) with such qualities as moral and physical courage. which are important for the Enlightenment ideal of social integration.
and affectation were felt as diseases which threatened to weaken the force. Augustan satire defended the values of civilisation in a civilised way: elegance. admiration and condemnation. 4. whose claim to the throne was justified by his Protestant religion. disloyal and excessively ambitious. folly. are mingled: the evil conspirator.1. Swift – aimed it at a variety of targets. The perfection of Dryden’s diction and his masterful use of the sketches heroic couplet* combine with his brilliant of character. 1743). intrigues. hypocrisy. a merciless attack on literary pedantry and dulness. from political and social life. The biblical characters represent English political figures: King David is Charles II. with implications concerning the whole of Augustan civilisation. The hero of this mock-heroic epic* is Mr. The Augustan Age is the great age of satire in English literature. its cult of reason and common sense.4. king David. contradictions and dark aspects. 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 . struggle for power and profit. 4. and satire became their formidable weapon. Political and religious dissensions. to religious debates and literary practices. John Dryden A remarkable example of political satire is John Dryden’s Absalom and Achitophel (1681-1682). The writers’ sense of mission turned them into guardians of the enlightened values of their time. genuinely gifted for leadership. turning it into an allegory of contemporary political struggles. 15-18). stability and order of a remarkable civilisation. Charles’s brother and heir to the throne. appears also as a stormy spirit.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4.4. and its most outstanding representatives – Dryden. brave and fearless man. at the advice of Achitophel* (cf.4. It tells the biblical story of Absalom’s rebellion against his father.2. selfishness. urbanity and refinement made it a sophisticated instrument of correction. Absalom is the latter’s illegitimate son. often touched by ironic humour. could not entirely remove or hide its tensions. The best achieved portrait is that of Achitophel / the Earl of Shaftesbury. Samuel. a passionate. and Achitophel is the first Earl of Shaftesbury. Perhaps the greatest Augustan satire on the world of letters is Alexander Pope’s The Dunciad* (1728. Pope. in which Dryden’s praise and criticism. Alexander Pope Satirical attacks on literary mediocrity and incompetence were frequent in an age so preoccupied with standards of correctness and excellence. greed. the Duke of Monmouth. Bayes*. Augustan satire The refinement and elegant surface of the Augustan Age. the instigator of the opposition to Catholic James Stuart.
and Morality.4. Compare your answer with the suggestions provided at the end of the unit. read the fragment again. concerning satire. imaginative inventiveness. are more disturbing than entertaining. Explain this analogy.e. Its implications. in a paragraph not exceeding 12 lines / 120 words. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Philosophy. however. Religion. and skill in the use of parody and the burlesque. Pope’s satirical allegory displays unequalled comic virtuosity and wit. SAQ 6 Text 4. pointing out the Augustan conception of satire. as it betrays Pope’s fear that civilisation and its conquests are vulnerable to unreason. Science. in the Reader represents a fragment from one of John Dryden’s essays. that the corruption of the spirit (which follows from the corruption of the word) leads to the crumbling of all order. The empire of Dulness finally extends to the whole universe of the spirit. Truth. more attentively. and the satire ends with the apocalyptic extinction of the enemies of Dulness: Fancy (i. If it should be significantly different.2. drawing an analogy between satire and a public execution. Art. he reflects on the art of the satirist. 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. 104 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The Restoration and the Augustan Age Alexander Pope (1688-1744) critics who aspire to undeserved fame. imagination). and revise subchapter 4. Here.
economic.A Voyage to Brodingnag III. absorbed in mathematical speculations and music. philosophical. Like many of his contemporaries. From this last country. In it. is one of the greatest satirists in world literature. Gulliver finds himself among people who are twelve times smaller and. Swift was divided between the idealist confidence in man’s capacity of selfimprovement. In Luggnagg. the Yahoos. Balnibarbi. Jonathan Swift Pope’s friend. and his nostalgia for the perfect world of the 105 I. Glubbdubdrib. whose admirable society is built entirely on rational principles. a hater of pedantry and pretence. Swift alludes satirically to a multitude of aspects from the contemporary political. Gulliver’s Travels pretends to be the record of the most astonishing experiences of an average man. social and intellectual realities. combining the conventions of utopia* and of the imaginary voyage. religious.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. appear in the utmost state of degeneracy. is inhabited by impractical intellectuals.” a work which Swift published anonymously in 1726.4. Gulliver can’t help seeing his fellow humans as disgusting Yahoos.A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnhnms Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in his potential as a rational creature. These satires have established his reputation as a champion of moral virtue. justice and freedom. an uncompromising defender of truth. the flying island. building houses starting from the roof. In Lilliput and Brobdingnag.” therefore a potential threat to that civilisation. as well as an unequalled master of satirical wit and irony. Jonathan Swift (1667-1745) 4. popular in the 16th and 17th centuries.4. Jonathan Swift. where mad scientists are engaged in phantasmagoric projects. he learns about the Struldbruggs. because he is perceived as a Yahoo endowed with “a rudiment of reason. Luggnagg and Japan IV. like extracting sunshine from cucumbers. and literary. respectively. bigger than himself.3. In his last voyage. Gulliver is cast on the shore of a country inhabited by the Houyhnhnms. but the significance of his work may be extended to the philosophical question of the human condition itself. In Balnibarbi. or softening marble to make pincushions. Gulliver is finally expelled. and where human creatures. curious and resourceful. Back in England. and the disappointment and anger at seeing reason so often abused. The most powerful expression of Swift’s satirical genius is Travels into Several Remote Nations of the World “by Lemuel Gulliver.4. Laputa. whose adventures as a surgeon and then the captain of several ships take him through the most unusual places. with elements of the marvelous or fantastic fable. It is an allegorical satirical travel book. he is shown the Academy of Lagado (a burlesque of the Royal Society). a race of immortal people whose eternal life is in fact a curse of endless decay. intelligent speaking horses. with a sharp sense of observation.A Voyage to Lilliput II.A Voyage to Laputa. In his third voyage he visits several strange places. The structure of Gulliver’s Travels Consisting of four books. His hurt sensitivity and disillusionment are conveyed in a series of prose satires which cover a wide range of issues – political.
The parallel results in a grotesque image of humankind. Find. at the end of the unit. who is thus forced to examine itself in a distorting mirror. 1. from the Reader. 106 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 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. and he prefers now the company of horses. 2. 3. in Text 4. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.5. Each answer should be limited to 3 lines / 30 words. incapable of suffering the proximity of humans. four features which humans and Yahoos are found to share.The Restoration and the Augustan Age rational horses alienates him completely from his own kind. and he also re-interprets attitudes observed in the Yahoos in the light of the information received from Gulliver about human customs and institutions. read the fragment carefully once more. 4. His initial curiosity and openness to the diversity of human nature turns into madness and misanthropy.
issues or figures. Political corruption is institutionalised (for example. with the hardest dilemma and the deepest humiliation. and his position in that strange land is highly ambiguous. his real humiliation is caused by the unflattering contrast between his own race and civilisation. 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. in his last adventure. He is no longer certain of the essence of his own nature. jumping over or creeping under a stick. ruled by an enlightened monarch. Lilliput and Brobdingnag: satire and utopia In the first two books of Gulliver’s Travels. or between those who break a boiled egg at the round end – the "Big Endians" – and those who break it at the pointed end). These comic details are satirical allusions to contemporary or recent events. Gulliver is confronted. Dissenters and Catholics. The fourth voyage. Their society is deeply divided by absurd dissensions: for example. he sees ideal creatures. In Brobdingnag. The Yahoos and the Houyhnhnms are a double mirror for Gulliver. forgetting that man holds a middle place in the Great Chain of Being*. between those who wear shoes with high heels and with low heels. The Lilliputians’ physical smallness is accompanied by moral flaws – they prove to be mean. by dancing on a rope.6. he is actually physically vulnerable in this world. means de-humanisation. but their universe is completely deprived of emotion and feeling. In the Houyhnhnms. The Houyhnhnms may be an allegorical embodiment of moral perfection attained through the exercise of pure reason. the highest offices in the state are obtained by those who know how to entertain the king best. with its religious controversies among Anglicans. In the Yahoos. physical size indicates allegorically features of human nature.4. he contemplates with shame and despair all the imperfections of the human race. cruel and hypocritical. vain. In spite of Gulliver’s dimensions (an allegorical representation of his complex of superiority). Gulliver’s failure to accept the mixed essence of man. as he is in permanent danger from creatures so much larger than him. his vulnerability increases. Gulliver. of the capacity for affection. etc.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4. etc. its political parties – Whigs and Tories –. governed only by reason. Gulliver in Brobdingnag 4. from which he chooses to leave.4. The error of Gulliver* is that he adopts an impossible deal of perfection.). its thirst for war – the endless conflict with France.5. and they constitute a miniature picture of England. However. and he realises how far man is from moral perfection. the frustrated idealist After the comic-disturbing examples of unreason witnessed in his third voyage. to integrate Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 107 . ambitious. Their non-human shape suggests that the absence of passion. and the utopian commonwealth of Brobdingnag.
or as opposite caricatural views of man in the state of nature. The Houyhnhms and the Yahoos have also been seen as allegorical representations of Reason and Instinct. Illustration from an early nineteenth century abridged editions (for children): Gulliver entertaining and being entertained by the tiny Lilliputians.The Restoration and the Augustan Age reason with feeling and instinct. and he ultimately becomes the target of Swift’s irony. an image which earned Swift the reputation of a misanthrope. the Yahoos embodied Swift’s own vision of mankind as hopelessly degraded. makes him a frustrated idealist. the Yahoos would stand for the essentially corrupt nature of man. filthy.illustration from a 1947 edition of Gulliver’s Travels 108 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . For many readers. In a “theological” perspective. The last book of Gulliver’s Travels has been given a multitude of interpretations. while the Houyhnhms would represent man who has escaped the consequences of the original sin. Houyhnhnm and Yahoo . unteachable and ungovernable.
Utopian aspects: Anti-utopian aspects Compare your answer with the one provided at the end of the unit. and to revise subchapter 4. you need to read the fragment again. find anti-utopian elements in it. however. from the Reader. in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. the Houyhnhnms’ society is perfect – a true utopia. Formulate your answer in no more than 10 lines / 100 words for each aspect.6. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 109 . Point out both kinds of aspects in the description contained in Text 4. The careful reader will.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. If there should be major differences. For Gulliver. more carefully.4. and by mixing the desirable with the unacceptable.6.
his learning and sense of literary tradition. One of the literary forms that developed during this period was the periodical essay (Addison.The Restoration and the Augustan Age 4.4. Dryden). the writers’ sense of responsibility towards the values of their civilisation. Congreve. Dryden. Pope. on the rule of decorum.). Satire. 110 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . on expressive restraint and skilfully controlled wit. both in verse (Dryden. Johnson are central figures of the Augustan Age. Steele). and. For Swift. A representative literary genre for this age is the comedy of manners (Etherege. The latter’s eminently rationalist poetics placed emphasis on clarity and elegance in style and composition. but also an enduring achievement of the enlightened spirit. therefore also capable of error. dominantly middle class. etc. Goldsmith. Addison. Like heroic tragedy (e. the pressure of the taste of the rising middle class replaced it with sentimental comedy. arrogant ignorance and unfounded pride in his reason. and he used every weapon in the satirist’s arsenal to awaken man from his selfcomplacency: biting irony.g. a masterpiece of irony which places under scrutiny many of the myths of the Enlightenment. caricature. Summary The Restoration is a historical and a literary period. parody. a wide public. and his brilliant wit make Gulliver’s Travels not only a landmark in Augustan literature. The importance of Gulliver’s Travels Gulliver’s Travels is the expression of Swift’s indignation and anger at man’s foolishness. was enlightened in matters of literary taste and intellectual achievements. It is an age of transition. and by means of it. Dryden. Swift’s allegorical satire Gulliver’s Travels is the most accomplished exploration of the contradictions of the Age of Reason. accommodating a diversity of literary forms and traditions – old and new. Swift’s extraordinary inventiveness and narrative gift. Swift. It was a chronicle of manners and an instrument of social and moral criticism. reason was not to be taken for granted: man was only a creature capable of reason. placing wit above virtue. narrow-sightedness. inflated ideal of heroism and virtue.7. While heroic drama sustained an impossible. grotesque. and recommended as a model the literary wisdom of the Ancients. Its flourishing in the Augustan Age reflects the integration of literature with social life. generally. on Reason and common sense in aesthetic choice. Steele. when literary Neoclassicism developed. was another characteristic genre. including that of Reason itself. which contributed greatly to the development of a modern prose style. Gradually. Pope) and in prose (Swift). comedy was licentious and cynical. It cultivated the idea of the “marriage” of Art and Nature. this highly artificial and conventional form was an expression of the taste of the Court aristocracy. He intended to “vex the world” in order to “mend” it. the belief in progress and improvement in an age which was also that of the Enlightenment. The period of the Restoration overlaps with the emerging Augustan Age.
or escort. it may also refer to a woman’s lover. in the 2nd Book of Kings (verses 15-18). dress or behaviour which is not natural. and the Glossary in Unit 2. For instance. admirer.” where Dryden would come regularly. gathered people of the literary profession or interested in literary matters. or human skill (as contrasted to the work of Nature).1. profession or interest. but is intended to impress others. “Will’s Coffee House. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1.1. art: in the Neoclassic doctrine. they were convenient places for socialising and for the dissemination of news. affectation: a manner of speech. Dulness as “Great Anarch” is the ruler of spiritual chaos. Anarch: a personification of anarchy. acquiring quickly the status of real “institutions” of opinion. greatly concerned with appearances. political or religious orientation. baroque: see again subchapter 2. In her empire of darkness and confusion. beaux: plural of beau (“handsome” in French). the acquired competence of the writer. 111 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Art may generally refer to the work of man. They were usually frequented by people of the same social rank. all the acquisitions of the human spirit become meaningless. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. his craftsmanship.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. well-dressed man. coffee houses: since the 1650s. In Pope’s satire. achieved by training and practice. Augustan: see Augustan Age in the Glossary in Unit 1. which designated a fashionable.
In Pope’s satire. inclination. Dunciad: the title is coined after The Iliad. It derives from “bay. the bay-leaf crown was the ancient emblem of fame. Bayes” refers to Lewis Theobald. justice of the peace: a person appointed by the crown to judge less serious cases in small courts of law. Dryden himself had been attacked several times as “Mr. Bayes: a name which was frequently applied satirically to a writer. fop: a man who is excessively concerned with fashion and elegance. shortness of sight or imperfect sense of things. “Mr. stupidity. figuratively: undeveloped or inactive. mock-heroic epic: see mock-heroic style and epic in the Glossary in Unit 1. referring not only to external nature. surviving through the Middle Ages and the Renaissance into the 18th century. which conceived of every being in nature as having its well-established place in an uninterrupted chain of increasing degrees of complexity.” Nature: an inclusive concept. to deceive). In this kind of comedy.4. dulness: in a strict sense.3 in Unit 1 (heroic drama). landscape. a strictly ordered hierarchical system. who had criticised Pope for his edition of Shakespeare (1725).” which means easy to fool or persuade to believe something (from “to gull”: to cheat. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. Pope uses the word in the enlarged sense of “all slowness of apprehension. trait . Bayes. fallow: (about land) left unplanted or unseeded.” diction : see poetic diction in the Glossary in Unit 1. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. Pope replaced Theobald by Colley Cibber.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • comedy of humours: see Jonson in the Glossary in Unit 1.e. slowness in thinking and learning. but to the whole of created reality. Mr. unexciting. or “humour. “Dull” also means uninteresting. characters were constructed on the basis of a particular disposition.” another word for “laurel”. i.” a “force inertly strong” which corrupts understanding and confuses the mind. honour. who in 1730 had become Poet Laureate. In the 1743 version of The Dunciad.3 in Unit 1. Gulliver: the name sounds very similar to the adjective “gullible. a word designating a person who is stupid or slow to learn. in which the destruction of one “link” would bring chaos. hedonism: a lifestyle devoted to the seeking of sensual pleasure. heroic tragedy: see again subchapter 1. the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 112 . industry: the quality of being hard-working or of being always employed usefully. boring. and distinction. Great Chain of Being: an ancient world-picture. licentiousness: uncontrolled sexual behaviour. from dunce.
1. and sentimental novel in subchapter 5. sprout up: to begin to grow or develop. poetics: the system of principles and conventions which govern a certain literary form. perfect society (literally: “no place. of taste or skill. of imagination and originality.4 in Unit 1. whose poem L’art poétique (1674) established the canons of taste and the standards of literary judgement for European Neoclassicism.3 in Unit 1) and of comedies of manners.e. polished). Joseph (1672-1719): representative of English literary Neoclassicisn. Tatler: a “tattler” is a person who gossips. uncreated word: with reference to the literary world. wit: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. making literature “dull. Pope’s satire warns thus about the dangers of lowering literary standards. sentimental comedy see again subchapter 1. essays and dramatic works. author of poems. and he was the pioneer of modern English literary criticism.4. Among the latter. Restoration: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. or who chats or talks idly. Restoration Wits: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. or literature in general. and he contributed significantly to the dissemination of the values of the Enlightenment in England. 113 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . i.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • • • cosmic harmony and order manifested in the appearances of this world. Nicolas (1636-1711): outstanding French poet and critic.” utopia: a genre in fiction whose name comes from Sir Thomas More’s work Utopia (1516).4.” from Greek u = not. He was equally successful as an author of heroic dramas (see again subchapter 1. Dryden. polite learning: the knowledge acquired through classical education (polite: refined. elegant. Neoclassicism: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. this phrase suggests the lack of inspiration.3 in Unit 5. Boileau. Gallery of personalities • • • Addison. for the notion of sentimentalism. John (1637-1700): one of the most outstanding figures of the Restoration and the Augustan Age. founder of literary journalism. in which he outlines the features of an ideal. He established the periodical essay as a literary genre. Marriage à la Mode (1672) distinguishes itself by its brilliant wit combats and effective social satire. the conception about literature and the creative act of a certain literary school or writer. especially the main landowner in a village. and topos = place). he translated from ancient authors. squire: a country gentleman. He excelled in all literary genres of his time.
George (1634-1691): a member of the group of Restoration Wits.). Pope. an unequalled master of irony and wit. 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. Besides his famous Gulliver’s Travels. Virgil. concise and flexible. Wycherley. he contributed to the spreading of Enlightenment ideas. member of the Royal Society. Steele. Together with Addison. he argues for the superiority of the Ancients over modern authors. and The Man of Mode. Johnson. and A Modest Proposal (1729). Among various other works. preoccupied by the cultivation of an English style that should be simple. of Irish origin. he is the author of the novel The Vicar of Wakefield (1766). Samuel: see the Gallery of personalities in Unit 2. Sprat. or Sir Fopling Flutter (1676). and a major representative of English sentimentalism. satires and epistles. and of the influential critical work Ars Poetica. his works include A Tale of a Tub (1704). Jonathan (1667-1745): the greatest English satirist. a masterpiece of 18th century fiction.” Horace: Quintus Horatius Flavius (65-8 B. Richard (1672-1725): Augustan essayist and dramatist (he established sentimental comedy on the English stage). William (1697-1764): painter and engraver. In the mock-heroic allegory The Battle of the Books (1704). Thomas (1635-1713): mathematician and writer.The Restoration and the Augustan Age • • • • • • • • • • Etherege. clear. His works include the philosophical poem An Essay on Man (1733). Alexander (1688-1744): the most illustrious representative of English literary Neoclassicism. Like his friend. author of odes. 114 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . in which he is the optimistic spokesman of the Age of Reason. His best comedies are She Would If She Could (1668). he endeavoured to lift Latin literature to the level of Greek literature. Swift. Oliver (1728-1774): upholder of the Neoclassic standards of style and composition. He was a friend of the novelist Henry Fielding. extremely popular owing to his “modern moral subjects” – a series of paintings or engravings which tell a story and constitute a comment on social. as well as the mock-heroic poem The Rape of the Lock (1712). which contains an allegorical satire on the division of the Christian Church. Latin poet of the time of Caesar Augustus. a bitter satire in defense of the Irish people. political and moral vices. who called him a “comic history-painter. as well as to the forging of a polished literary prose style. Goldsmith. Hogarth.C. William (1640-1716): one of the Restoration Wits.
e. opinions and tastes. or judgment. reasonableness. a way of protecting their intimacy and their feelings. in an analogous sense. 9. integrity. benevolence. 2. abdicating from reason. wild plants growing where they are not wanted) will invade an uncultivated field. of Human nature. which may be cultivated or left to “lie fallow.” Shakespeare will appeal to readers across the ages. She wishes for a sincere and authentic relationship.e. Addison’s observation reflects the faith in man’s intellectual and moral perfectibility through responsible education – an attitude characteristic of the Enlightenment. regardless of their particular condition. 7. educated to think – will employ itself with trifles. Dryden makes an analogy between the sharp blade of the executioner’s sword and the sharp irony and wit of the satirist.T. Johnson implies that an author’s greatness depend on his insight into Human Nature. 8. SAQ 5 honesty. 6. SAQ 6 Satire is the art of pointing at people’s faults without resorting to insult or calumny. 4. 5. is. modesty. by the standards of her social environment. and she rejects the idea of the wife’s subordination. because he succeeded in rendering the general “truths” of human nature. common sense. good judgment.T. and should not try to impose his/her habits on the other. the refusal to make a public show of their affection.F. His characters embody the fundamental human passions which will always move mankind.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. each partner should accept and respect the other’s wishes.F.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1.F SAQ 2 Millamant has an unconventional view of marriage. 3. common to all humanity – is greater than the pleasure of “sudden wonder” procured by the depiction of “particular manners” and by “fanciful invention. of those features which are universal. 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. sense of responsibility.T. Civilised reserve in society. good breeding.T. industry. Culture is thus seen as an improvement of nature. so the mind which is not assiduously and constantly cultivated – i. furnished with ideas. She also refuses to see marriage as a limitation of the woman’s freedom. for sophisticated Millamant.T.” Just as weeds (i. SAQ 4 Addison builds an analogy between the human mind and a field. good sense. open-mindedness. and.F. In marriage. diligence. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 115 .
The civilised art of satire is opposed to the coarseness and brutality of personal attack and insult. so the satirist is merciless in his denouncing human flaws. only the species counts. the exclusion of opinion. The Renaissance and the Restoration Period. The Novel in Its Beginnings. 3. Both of them need skill – or “art” – to do this in a satisfactory way. 1969 (pp. The irrational greed and avarice. Daiches. Editura Universităţii Suceava. The Houyhnhms are not divided by quarrels. the generalises extension of friendship and benevolence. the ability of the worst to set themselves as leaders. the “unnatural appetite” for things whose value doesn’t justify the effort and energy spent in their acquisition and preservation. Bucureşti: Editura Didactică şi Pedagogică. The individual is of no importance. SAQ 8 Utopian aspects: The cultivation and exercise of reason. A Critical History of English Literature. which are the literary equivalent of a man’s “slovenly butchering. The incapacity of choosing a ruler according to real merit. the “fineness. and no personal choice in the matter of marriage. and the equal education of males and females was a progressive Enlightenment ideal. which is meant only for procreation. the jealousy (envy) and the aggressiveness towards one’s fellows. Cornelia. 5. decency and civility are certainly desiderata of any civilisation. 1983 (pp.” SAQ 7 1. The spirit of competition. and the hierarchy of their society is based on racial discrimination (“inferior” Houyhnhnms will fatally be servants). 4. Anti-utopian aspects: the absolutisation of reason. which makes social progress inconceivable. ultimately of imagination.” the subtlety of his accusations. The art of the accomplished satirist consists in the elegance. civility and friendship become a cold and superficial form of social relationship. Womankind’s lustfulness and inclination to coquetry. the education in the spirit of moderation and industry. English Literature and Civilisation. 180-187) 3. The English Eighteenth Century.. deprives their thinking of flexibility and nuance. In the absence of affective attachment. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. The tyranny of reason also rules out affection and emotion: they have no particular feelings for their own offspring. Further reading 1.33-66) 116 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . conflict and self-interest. 2003 (pp.The Restoration and the Augustan Age Just as the executioner will implacably carry out the capital punishment. 2. Ioan-Aurel (coord. David. the rulers’ habit of surrounding themselves by favourites whose role is to flatter and to encourage them in their abuses. 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). the silly behaviour of women determined to draw attention to themselves. which breeds imaginary ills. Preda. They practice population control. Macsiniuc. 537-550) 2.). The tendency to idleness. vol.
184.108.40.206. 5.4.2. 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.4.2. 220.127.116.11. 5. 5. 5.3.4. 18.104.22.168.4. 5.1. 5.2. 5.3.4. 5. 5. 5. 5.2.1. 22.214.171.124.2. or Virtue Rewarded Social hierarchy and the individual self Psychological realism and the epistolary technique Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The novel as comic romance The character of parson Adams Fielding’s conception of character in Joseph Andrews Fielding’s Augustanism Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The “Shandean” view of writing The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions Tristram Shandy as metafiction Summary Key words Glossary Gallery of personalities SAA No.126.96.36.199.2. 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 .188.8.131.52.2. 5. 184.108.40.206.4. 5.4. 5. 5.4. 5. 5.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel UNIT 5 THE AGE OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT: THE RISE OF THE NOVEL Unit Outline 5 220.127.116.11. 5. 5.3. 5.2.
The late 17 th century had seen a flourishing of this kind of fiction. 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. This new literary form embodied the democratic and revolutionary impulse of a century in which the issues of individual liberty. Background and main concerns The novel’s emergence is commonly associated with the aspiration of the middle classes to overcome cultural marginality. natural rights. Women’s education was beginning to be encouraged.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel By the end of this unit you should be able to: ♦ identify. but there was a considerable amount of novels written by women. tolerance. in the early years of the 18 th century. and generally about women. Romances were long narratives combining heroic adventure and passionate love. Not only were women the most numerous “consumers” of novels. in various aspects of the novels discussed in this unit. and there is a connection between. whose action was often set in remote. confined to the 118 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . exotic settings. and the development of the novel. a certain tendency to women’s emancipation. 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 5.1. Such tales gratified the fantasies of a class of readers who were still barred from public self-assertion. The general growth of literacy* in the 18 th century led to the rise of a new.1. and whose protagonists were of noble stock. mostly imitations of French models. A significant part of this new reading public consisted in women.1. of a genre which became the main rival of the novel: the romance. Novel and romance in the 18th century The dominance of female readership explains the enduring popularity. whose vast majority was middle-class. emancipation and progress received unprecedented prominence and were vital for the self-assertion of the new class. more inclusive reading public. and their involvement with literary life was increasing. 5. the rise of the middle classes.
The novel reflects. On the one hand. The readers of novels could identify themselves with the characters. in Augustan terms. realised with an unprecedented wealth of social. by common people. because the depicted experience and universe were more or less familiar to them. Thus. the province of the novel was the familiar. The ordinary aspects of life. its determination to participate in the general Augustan quest for an ideal of social harmony.1. Realism – or. its emphasis on individual experience is the literary expression of the spirit of individualism associated with the growing importance of the middle classes. Characters are no longer idealised. It attempted to correct morals and educate manners by censuring vice and folly. moral or psychological detail. in its concerns. shows its assumed responsibility towards contemporary civilisation. the novel reflected the general critical spirit of the Age of the Enlightenment and participated in its project of emancipation through education. but distinct individualities. their common denominator was the attempt to convey an impression of authentic experience. Didacticism and realism in the 18th century novel Whereas the basic aim of romance was to entertain. but from contemporary life.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel domestic universe. a double tendency of the Age of the Enlightenment.2. vague and abstract figures. socially and materially dependent on men. The knights and princesses of romances were replaced. it recommended patterns of behaviour and models of success that were relevant to the condition of middle class readers. 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. history. or previous literature. in the novel. The novelist no longer drew his plots from mythology. On the other hand. romances were therefore literature of escape. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 119 . with entertainment frequently subordinated to the instructive aim. the novel’s aspiration was to fulfil the double mission of all Augustan literature: to entertain (to divert) and to instruct (to edify). The novel proposed norms of moral conduct and standards of social integration. whose province was the spectacular and the extraordinary. By contrast. to their relevance for the reader’s aspirations and possibilities. For most women. The represented experience was meant to engage the reader’s interest both because it was familiar and because of its uniqueness. truth to Nature – is what primarily distinguished the novel from romance. its endeavour to propagate a certain moral and social code. legend. 5. a reality that was close to the average reader’s experience became a source of imaginative interest. the novel’s didactic vocation. In spite of the great diversity of novels in the 18th century. its normality.
1. at the end of the unit. read again subchapters 5. The didactic mission of the novel in the 18th century consisted in … 5. 1.1. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. Two or three lines (20-30 words) should be enough for each completion.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The novel offers imaginative versions of the reconciliation of these two tendencies. Women were … 3. If there should be major differences. and public/social norms and conventions. on the one hand. SAQ 1 Complete the sentences below.2. The rise of the middle classes … 2. on the other. 120 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Each full statement should describe a general aspect concerning the rise of the novel as a genre in the 18th century. … 4. by centering its interest on the relationship between the individual and his/her social environment. constitute the foundation of all novelistic plots in the 18 th century.1. The novel’s interest in the tensions between the public and the private reflected … Compare your answers with those given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and 5. The tensions and conflicts between private/individual convictions and inclinations.
Instead. The characteristic comic plot presupposes the passage from disorder. examining the conflicts between private morality and public expectation. but to literature as well. The motif of the travel is central. from which it borrowed devices.g. inclusive.g. their distance from the every day experience of common readers. and the world represented in such novels is open. irony and burlesque*. a wide variety of influences went into its making. classic models to follow.e. which claim the reader’s attention more than the characters do. or explore personal conflicts which involve different sets of values (e. and which emphasised the importance of feeling and its close connection with moral virtue. The comic novel in the 18th century is inscribed in a long tradition of deflation of romance. the romance). but they differ from romances in their attention to realistic detail. popular in the 17th and 18th centuries. in imitation of the descriptive accuracy of travel literature. belonging to several categories at once. and extremely diverse.1. but also in poetry and in drama. • • The novel of manners submits to the reader’s judgements various types of social behaviour. patterns and motifs. romance is trivialised through parody*.3. since this kind of fiction subverts the prestige of older genres (the epic. forms of expression. • 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. repetitious. On the other hand. and the hero’s various encounters are. • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 121 . exposing their irrelevance and unreality. and its beginnings are defined by a tendency to “sponge” on other literary forms. The sentimental hero/heroine unites a remarkably acute sensibility with spotless virtue and a deep sense of honour. Fielding). The analysis of sentimental response was meant to elicit from the reader an empathic understanding. They invariably contain the motif of the journey. loosely structured. therefore an ally to realism. Richardson). Many novels cut across divisions. misfortune to the solution of all conflicts and the integration of the protagonist in a social structure. for the author. displayed not only in fiction. on events. This makes the 18th century novel rather difficult to classify. The comic novel is an opportunity for writers to display a critical attitude not only to reality. Typology of the novel in the 18th century The novel as a genre had no authoritative. • Picaresque* novels may be considered a special case of adventure novels. confusion. an opportunity for comprehensive social criticism. Sentimentalism became a literary fashion. It may either offer a comprehensive mirror of the social diversity of the age (e.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. i. in which the action is episodic. the comic vision is always in the service of social and moral criticism. The most popular kinds of novels in the 18th century were: Adventure novels share with romances an emphasis on action.
________________________ 6. It explores the diversity of social manners and their articulation with moral values.3. at the end of a process in which he/she learns to accord private impulse with social expectation. 1. It offers more delight in ________________________ action than in character. ________________________ 7. It explores the labyrinth of emotion and feeling. ________________________ 4. 3. deliberately reducing the importance of plot or emotional conflict. ________________________ 2. 122 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . mocking their elevated style by applying it to common. ________________________ 8. ________________________ 5. The achievement of maturity leads to the hero’s satisfactory social integration. trivial subjects.. If you have failed to match any of the descriptions with the right type of novel. in an atmosphere of gloom. this illustrates the concern of the Enlightenment with the development of the individual as a social being.1. ________________________ Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. in their confrontation with moral choice. usually with supernatural ingredients. It is concerned with the individual’s full assertion as a social being. Its hero is a marginal figure who aspires to social success. It centres on intellectual debate and confrontation of ideas. It presents a tale of mystery and horror. at the end of the unit.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. • SAQ 2 What kinds of novels do the following sentences describe? Write the answer in the space indicated by the continuous line. read again subchapter 5. after each sentence. Two of these descriptions do not match any of the types of novels described in the subchapter above. and his/her experiences provide a satirical survey of the contemporary society. It defines itself in contrast with the “serious” narrative genres.
Daniel Defoe and the novel of adventure Defoe’s career as a novelist started with his masterpiece. cast in a picaresque form. but also on the Continent. Both Defoe and Richardson display in their narratives a remarkable faithfulness to detail. 5. Defoe and Richardson: from circumstantial realism to sentimental truth Each of these two novelists had an essential contribution to the rise of the novel. on the individual’s striving towards some form of personal achievement. on his fiction. establishing it as the most popular literary genre in the 18th century. is invariably accompanied by moral reformation. They differ in the objects of their “realistic” approach: whereas Defoe’s interest is invested in the external world of fact. Their rise to social respectability and wealth. They are pragmatic. They were all stories of success. in actions. This aspect in Defoe’s novels points to his Puritan background. The Life and Strange Surprising Adventures of Robinson Crusoe of York. Features of Defoe’s heroes Daniel Defoe (1660-1731) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 123 . This confers vividness to their narratives. Both of them enjoyed enormous popularity not only in England. several adventure novels. of such non-fictional kinds of writing as the spiritual autobiography or didactic religious treatises. and their adventures show the individual victorious over circumstances and environment (physical or social). Their novels are the literary reflection of the spirit of individualism that characterised the age. Its tremendous success encouraged Defoe to produce. Puritan* background.2. the power to hold attention and keep curiosity awake.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. the constant striving towards accuracy of description.1. on the movements of consciousness and the emotional response to moral problems. They share a middle class. in circumstantial details. to the influence. and both of them focus on the individual in his/her struggle of securing a legitimate position in the social structure. Mariner. and tracing the protagonists’ struggles to achieve material prosperity as a condition of a stable social position. resourcefulness and capacity for adjustment and survival. dynamic and versatile. published in 1719. in the next years. Richardson focuses on the inner world of thought and feeling. His heroes are remarkable in their vitality. their social insertion. when the writer was almost sixty.2.
has three children. to buy slaves. as well by the more recent case of a sailor who had lived in complete solitude for five years on an uninhabited island. Robinson displays from a young age the romantic inclination of wandering. Son of a successful German merchant settled in England. he starts a voyage to Africa. Robinson settles in Brazil where he becomes a relatively prosperous plantation owner.” and leaves home on board a ship. The only survivor. not only physical but also spiritual. where he has established a colony. Robinson becomes engaged in a heroic struggle for survival. prudent and calculating mature man. of his moral strength to carry on against all obstacles.” He disregards his father’s advice of continuing the family trade and keeping within the limits of his “middle station in life. Under Defoe’s pen. such an experience became an archetypal one. Wyeth . romantic youth into a realistic. a celebration of man’s power of spiritual endurance in adversity. in soon left a widower.1920) 124 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .2.” It is. names him Friday and turns him into his loyal servant and receptive pupil. Providence helps him finally leave the island. The subject is inspired by 17th century stories of castaways on desert islands. but during a terrible storm he is shipwrecked on a desert island. he learns that his prospering business in Brazil has made him a rich man. the desire for adventure and for “seeing the world.2. After 26 years.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Robinson Crusoe: theme and plot Robinson Crusoe is recommended as “a just history of fact.” without “any appearance of fiction in it. in fact. In the 28 years of solitary life. he rescues a savage from his fellow cannibals. one of Defoe’s “honest cheats.” as he came to call his novels – the attempt to inculcate religion and morality through a gripping story which has the appearance of authenticity. he turns from a reckless. C. and the book ends with his promise of further accounts of his island. On his return to England. After several misadventures at sea. Illustration to the first edition (1719) Robinson on the beach (illustration by N. In the hope of increasing his wealth. struggling to impose on an alien space his middle class idea of order. He marries.
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.3. the awareness of his sinfulness and the sincere desire for repentance. In his initial struggle with despair.2. In this light. Robinson perceives his exile from the world as a terrible punishment for his transgression of his father’s word. as one of the great myths of individualism of Western civilisation. If it should differ considerably.” 5. as his life becomes more secure and his trust in Providence increases. to the awakening of religious conscience.2. embodying elements of contemporary social philosophy and economic theory. at the end of the unit. but the proper condition for the examination of consciousness.. tracing Robinson’s progress from sin (his disobedience of his father). the motif of the island acquires symbolic Robinson’s island dimensions. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. It corresponds to the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 125 . making sure you understand the meaning of the phrase “honest cheat. and 5. as a political or economic utopia. Gradually. Isolation is no longer a misfortune. as an allegory of the ecological development of history. 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.2. and finally to his conviction of God’s benevolent design.1. read again subchapters 5. Robinson comes to see his solitude rather as a spiritual and moral shelter. It may also be read as a spiritual autobiography in the Puritan tradition.
You may render these features either by a single noun (e.2. or by a sentence (e.g.. in the space below. Defoe’s novel is thus a celebration of the dignity of work. as a self-reliant individual.. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. at the end of the unit. inventiveness. perseverance.” Robinson perceives the island as the equivalent of a regained Paradise. 2.. 126 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Robinson finds in it a “therapeutic” value. Crusoe’s years of solitude trained him for social insertion. ingenuity).2.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The celebration of homo faber characteristic Puritan tendency to self-scrutiny and introspection. and is thus a way of restoring a lost Paradise. subchapter 5. as well as the fragment in the Reader. Like Adam. if the biblical curse of work is meant to remind Adam permanently of his original disobedience. food and the basic commodities of life turns into a source of satisfaction. Robinson is cast out from the “edenic” safety and happiness of his father’s home into an uncertain world of toil. SAQ 4 Read Text 5.3. It has its spiritual rewards. or the felix culpa*. g. where his daily bread is earned with “infinite labour. you must read again the last two paragraphs of subchapter 5.” However. the protagonist’s experience evokes the theme of the fortunate fall. Enumerate. The enormous effort by which he secures shelter. and it is also symbolic of the Puritan sense of an intense personal relationship with God. Robinson Crusoe also celebrates those human features which enable man to master circumstances: pragmatism.” desires and “delights. 3. which will serve his instinct for independence. with a well-defined utilitarian view of life. morally autonomous. In this connection. describing in minute detail Robinson’s attempt to make an earthenware pot. perspicacity. Changed in his “notion of things. 4. He takes pleasure in his work).2. 1. at least four features of the hero’s character as they are illustrated by this description. If you should fail to find any of the features mentioned there. its essential role in man’s material and spiritual progress.
3. easy and eminently factual style made his writings accessible to a large audience. rendered in a simple. In his aspiration to create an effect of reality in his narrative. If your list contains none of the features mentioned there.4 once more and do the exercise again. Defoe’s novels imposed a model of style that contributed considerably to the “democratisation” of literature. the most common objects and actions in their particularity. of familiar detail. The “journalistic” style of Defoe’s fiction is consonant with an ideal of prose style characterised by plainness. the accumulation of circumstantial detail create a strong sense of a palpable. His linear. which. episodic plots imitate the episodic quality of life itself. read the fragment and subchapter 5. clarity. on a separate sheet. Defoe’s style The world of Defoe’s novels is the world of common fact and action.2. 1. 127 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. in turn benefited from his innate gift for telling stories. 2.2. The latter owes greatly to Defoe’s experience as a journalist. Identify in it at least four features of Defoe’s characteristic narrative style and write them in the space provided below. clear language. the promise of symbolic meanings. solid world. which draws much of its force from Defoe’s peculiar narrative manner and style. 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. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. It was with Richardson that “the sense of life” conveyed by the narrative was completed by a sense of form. concreteness. He convinced readers of the truthfulness of his narrative by evoking. with unmatched vividness. His fiction has the remarkable power to evoke a tangible reality. the frequent enumerations and inventories.4. lack of unnecessary ornamentation. but on the complexity of character and human relationship. SAQ 5 Analyse Text 5. whose reality is difficult to doubt. at the end of the unit. 4. containing. arising from the complication of a plot centering not on episodic adventure.2. His simple. he paid little attention to matters of form. The richness of concrete detail. Robinson Crusoe is a gripping narrative. in the Reader from the point of view of its style. at the same time.
Pamela differs from Clarissa in tone and ending. the double victim of the libertine aristocrat who raped her and of her narrow-minded. sensibility and morality. As the first great sentimental novelist. the latter’s son. but also the agitation of her heart and its conflicting impulses. Both novels concentrate on the microcosm of the family and develop the themes of the trial of innocence. recording the details of her ordeal. Upon the death of her mistress. 128 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . hoping that she will give in. or Virtue Rewarded (1740) and Clarissa. His influence was considerable.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. In her new state. not only in England but also on the Continent. Richardson focuses on the relation between feeling and virtue. Both are written in the epistolary manner*.6. Pamela has one more test to pass: winning the approval of Mr. In Pamela. or Virtue Rewarded Pamela is a simple countryside girl who works as a maidservant in the house of Lady B_. whose affection she finally gains. Her diary – intended for her parents – falls into Mr. At the same time. B’s relatives and friends. B_’s sister. His focus on the inner life of feeling and emotion prefigures the Romantic* sensibility. Mr. Richardson’s prominent place in the history of the English novel is ensured by two novels: Pamela. of the struggle between virtue and vice. which Richardson found best suited for the realistic rendering of psychological and moral complexity. 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. B_’s hands. his exploration of unconscious motivation makes him a forerunner in the great tradition of the novel of psychological analysis. of individual freedom threatened by arbitrary power. tries to seduce her and make her his mistress. B_.5. Pamela decides to thank Providence by doing as much good as she can to those around her.2.2. Faced with her resistance. He acknowledges his love and proposes marriage to her. impressed by Pamela’s unusual beauty and grace. In Clarissa. Mr. cruel and greedy relatives. in Bedfordshire. the tone is rather that of a comedy of manners and the ending is in the spirit of the Cinderella* tale. The plot of Pamela. Her disarming combination of graceful modesty and pride helps her come victorious in an encounter with haughty Lady Davers. Samuel Richardson (1689-1761) 5. as well as for his didactic purpose. Back to Bedfordshire as mistress of the house. or the History of a Young Lady (1748). Mr. the death of the heroine turns her into a tragic figure. Pamela continues a diary. B_ abducts her and keeps her a prisoner for a while in his Lincolnshire house. There. unanimously loved and admired. who is now convinced of the purity of her motives and of her innocence.
B_ intercepting Pamela’s first letter to her parents (Engraving by H. Pamela is brought up by her modest parents in the spirit of the strictest religious principles.2. B_. the freedoms that he takes with her. the rights of the individual. Richardson’s creation of Pamela is revolutionary. as he embodies perfect virtue in a lower middle-class girl.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. Gravelot to the 1742 edition) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 129 . She sees social hierarchy as “natural. Richardson’s novel participates in the larger illuminist debate on the issue of authority and absolute power vs. He thus questions the exclusive right of aristocracy. Richardson’s implicit radical message. This ambiguity in her condition makes her remarkably class-conscious. 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. to set moral standards to the nation. but the education she received in Lady B_’s house is far above that of a servant. as a traditionally dominant class. Social hierarchy and the individual self Pamela’s problem is not only the defense of her chastity.” but she defends her dignity as an individual. is consistent with the spirit of individual freedom which defines the Enlightenment. The cover engraving and title page of the 1741 edition Mr.7. The moral conflict in the novel is accompanied by social issues. a complete novelty in fiction. that no one has the right to control the ideas and feelings of another. She perceives her imprisonment by Mr. F.
If there should be significant differences. what are the implications of her exclamation: “My soul is of equal importance with the soul of a princess. between hate and admiration.2. Her initial innocent regard for her master’s benevolence turns gradually into the apprehension of danger.e.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 6 Considering the heroine’s dilemma in the novel. but his moments of kindness confuse her and make her feel vulnerable. it is easier for her to stand his abuses.8.2. at the end of the unit. to obey Mr. 5. Richardson’s mastery consists in the subtlety with which he suggests the gradual surfacing of unconscious feeling and with which he traces the heroine’s slow process of self-knowledge. though in quality [i. Her conscience is divided between her loyalty to the moral principles inculcated by her parents and her social duty. in no more than 10 lines / 100 words. social standing] I am but upon a foot with the meanest slave.6. B_ When the latter acts openly as her oppressor. as a servant.”? Answer in the space left below. her contradictory impulses and unconscious motivations.2. and 5. Pamela struggles from the start between fright and fascination. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. read again attentively subchapters 5. 130 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Psychological realism and the epistolary technique What makes Richardson a real innovator is the credibility with which he renders the heroine’s inner conflicts. but her letters betray her growing affection for her master.7.
however. The exploration of the complexities of emotional response to pressing moral issues defines Richardson as a sentimental novelist. He proves as unaware of his feelings as Pamela is.9. 1. is the impact of these incidents and encounters on her mind and heart. 2.3. Your answers should not exceed 4 lines / 40 words each. at the end of the unit. and considering also Text 5. excerpted from Pamela. as well as the indicated fragments in the Reader. He found the epistolary narrative to be best suited for his sentimental focus. B_ follows a similar evolution.4. The spectacular change in him is his overcoming of class prejudice under the influence of feeling. There is a struggle in him between the “pride of birth” and “pride of fortune”.. In Pamela’s letters and diary. The use of the epistolary technique afforded direct access to the character’s thoughts and feelings. events are recorded with the same care for detail as in Defoe’s narratives. her sentimental response to them. What counts.. and that human actions may have their true motivation hidden from consciousness. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 131 . She has a remarkable gift for rendering an incident vividly or delineating another character. read again subchapter 5.2. find two main advantages of the epistolary technique. What Richardson manages to convey most convincingly is the psychological truth that feeling and emotion may sometimes run counter to our rational will.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel The character of Mr. on the other. in the Reader). and his developing love. If they should correspond to none of the offered suggestions. Compare your answers with the ones given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. on the one hand. which are captured in the process of their emergence. SAQ 7 Starting from Richardson’s own description of his epistolary manner (Text 5.
performed by means of comic satiric devices. Joseph Andrews is presented as Pamela’s brother. priggish* upstart. but a snobbish. Fielding uses the technique of reversal as a parodic device. they mirror a wide range of human types. Mr. Fielding abandons parody. 1790) 132 . At this point.3. Treating seriously of male virtue results in comic effect. the author asserts himself. Comedy and parody in Joseph Andrews The History of the Adventures of Joseph Andrews and of His Friend. controlling the narrative and imposing his own values explicitly. He is also the first novelist who displayed a remarkable sense of form. author of Don Quixote” (1742).” Mr. Fielding was a master of parody. and the first comprehensive literary picture of the manners and mentalities of the age. and. His works are panoramic reflections of the age. irony. Fielding considered the Puritan morality preached by Rhichardson’s Pamela as narrow and ungenerous. “written in imitation of the manner of Cervantes*. Fielding’s combination of realism and comedy inaugurated a lasting tradition of realistic fiction as an instrument of criticism of manners. required a narrator who should be no longer a character. Through the omniscient* narrator. but also by the maid. Abraham Adams. and he thought to propose his own version of morality. Pope. modest and gentle creature. He is the object of seduction of “Lady Booby*. emulating his sister in the exemplarity of his virtue. whose servant he was. Mrs. to his native village. More unexpected Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Lady Booby and Joseph Andrews (engraving by James Heath. Cervantes. Lady Booby’s estate in Somersetshire is the scene for the novel’s last series of adventures. Henry Fielding (1707-1754) 5. started as a parody. which is doubled by the fact that Joseph is pursued not only by the mistress. but a voice external to the story. in London. Slipslop. Parodic accents are revived: Pamela is not Richardson’s humble. Omniscient narration afforded a comic vision of life. The careful narrative architecture of his novels. burlesque and comic satire. and the long central section of the novel – its picaresque part – describes Joseph’s adventures on the road. Booby. 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. The hero’s companions are Parson Abraham Adams and Fanny Goodwill. A somber discovery marks the climax of confusion: it appears that Joseph and Fanny are brother and sister. Mr. Joseph’s sweetheart. as well as their inclusiveness. All important characters meet here. including Pamela and her husband. above all. who opposes her brother’s marriage to a simple country-girl. B_’s aunt. His rejection of both leads to his dismissal. The result was the first comic novel of manners in England. so that he sets out for home.1.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. Henry Fielding and the novel of manners Fielding is the creator of the novels of manners.3. relationships and actions. His acknowledged literary models were Swift.
Cervantes. like the motif of love fulfilled against all obstacles. T F 4. T F 8. T F 3. T F 6. which closes the plot. Mr. or the pattern of the adventurous journey. carefully. Fielding gives his definition of a comic romance and discusses the nature and the source of the comic (“the Ridiculous”). Fielding exploits such motifs in a comic or burlesque key. read the text once more. alluding thus to the older genre. 1. T F 2. Fielding resorts to the burlesque both in the creation of his characters and in diction. Fielding likes to play with genres. 5. while Fanny and Pamela are revealed to be sisters. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 133 . The burlesque in writing and the caricatura in painting presuppose distortion and exaggeration. to be both serious and ironic about their conventions. Affectation arising from hypocrisy is more efficiently comic. at the end of the unit. If you should fail to identify the sentences correctly as true or false. The action of a comic romance is more extended and comprehensive than that of a comedy. is an ingredient of romantic plots. but rooting his action in contemporaneity and the ordinary.5.” Fielding himself speaks of his work as a comic romance. The comic writer gives pleasure by strictly imitating nature. indeed “in imitation of the manner of Cervantes. T F 7. T F 5. For instance. which turns out to be gentle*. in the spirit of comedy. Natural imperfections are a source of the Ridiculous for the comic writer.2. Both comedy and comic romance introduce characters of low social rank and inferior manners. Affectation arising from vanity presupposes the concealment of vice under an appearance of virtue. The novel as comic romance Like his invoked literary master.3. for true or false) for each of them. Read Text 5. the spectacular reversal of Joseph’s status. Circle the appropriate letter (T or F. Wilson. This removes all obstacles in the way of Joseph and Fanny’s marriage. T F Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.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. whom they had met during their journey. very carefully and identify which of the statements below are true and which are false. SAQ 8 In the Preface to Joseph Andrews.
both loyal and treacherous servants or friends.3. the essence of Christian morality is not prudence. His fund of Christian idealism is inexhaustible. active goodness. lawyers. Defoe and Richardson were also concerned with the relation individual-society. In the combination of foolishness and idealism that characterises the parson. By means of techniques of contrast. Fielding’s panoramic approach led him to find uniform patterns in human behaviour. Parson Adams’s character remains the moral center of the novel. Like his literary ancestor. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural Character as type The principle of contrast in characterisation 134 .4. masters. profession and temperament is represented in his novels.3. but a species” (Joseph Andrews). the parson combines innocence and simplicity with dignity and learning. in various nuances of behaviour and in its moral diversity. Along the novel. doctors. Joseph appears to follow his sister in his restriction of virtue to the question of chastity. but manners. often making him appear ridiculous. etc. in spite of the many instances of greed.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. quickly assimilating his mentor’s lesson and convinced that true Christianity means. one of the most successfully accomplished quixotic* characters. He represents what Fielding considers the highest Christian value: goodness. Joseph emerges as morally mature. as he himself says. not an individual. which must give substance to faith. above all. which often create comic effects. Fielding resorts to the principle of contrast in characterisation. At the same time. and he never seems to learn from disappointing experiences. Virtue and vice are not the “privilege” of a certain class or profession. both honest and hypocrite priests. but good deeds and charity. but they placed their main interest in the individual. as for Richardson. his virtues always outshine his occasional foolishness. In the beginning. In other words.3. Parson Adams as a quixotic character 5. but also moral instruction. there are both good and bad innkeepers. Adams’s unsuspecting nature often gets him in trouble. Fielding offers aesthetic delight. he describes “not men. The presence of Parson Adams is essential for the evolution of the main character. because “beauty and excellence” are always best demonstrated by their reverse. etc. Fielding makes a synthesis between the comic and the morally serious. in Fielding. The character of Parson Adams The influence of Cervantes is clear in Fielding’s delineation of Parson* Adams. 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. Fielding involves him in a multitude of comic situations. Every social class. hypocrisy and intolerance he is confronted with. For the author. Fielding’s fiction displays an immense gallery of characters. fulfilling thus the novel’s double aim of entertaining and instructing. In order to make the extraordinary variety of human types easier to deal with. cruelty. and the reader is invited to judge all the other characters against the moral standard that he embodies.
His commentaries and reflections on his own art.2. 3.2. read again subchapters 5..3. in the superior corrective efficiency of comedy and its devices..8. provide the first theory of the novel.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. preoccupied with the reformation of manners. incorporated in the substance of his works. 5. at the end of the unit. 1. of evoking his characters’ social position and moral nature through their language. and 5. Explain them. 2. drawing short comparisons. Fielding’s Augustanism* Of all 18th century novelists. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. like many Augustan writers. He is a moralist. Fielding is the most “Augustan.3.” His exploration of the diversity of Human Nature. combining elegant seriousness with wit and irony. If they should differ substantially. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 135 . 5. he had the exceptional gift of individualizing his characters through speech.5. unaffected. reveals his Augustan view of the writer’s province.2. through its moral and temperamental types. of no more than 3 lines / 30 words each. At the same time. Such reflections show his Neoclassic emphasis on discipline and craftsmanship as essential for successful creation. SAQ 9 Mention at least three features of Fielding’s art of the novel which distinguish him from Defoe and Richardson. 5. His narrative style is eminently Augustan: articulate and refined..4. and he believes.3. and he tried to give full legitimacy to the novel.. He had a solid classical education and a strong sense of literary tradition. defining it in relation with the respectable genres of the epic and drama.4.
i. that his father decided to write a “system of education” (Tristrapaedia). the testing of the possibilities and limits of fiction took the novel into a radical direction. which isolates each of them in his mental universe. Laurence Sterne (1713-1768) 5. pedantic discourses are completely incomprehensible to those around him. moulds reality into a literary pattern.” individuals dominated by some private obsession. 136 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . unpredictable narrative. corporal Trim. christened Tristram (a name which evokes the French word “triste”) instead of Trismegistus* as his father had intended. that. by accident. With Sterne.4.e. Much more of the narrative is dedicated to the unforgettable figures of his father. is an erudite philosopher. Tristram suffered a new misfortune: an accidental “circumcision. We learn few things about his life: that his nose was crushed at birth by the doctor’s forceps. the narrator.4. His Tristram Shandy has been seen as an anti-novel. In spite of his promises. in Joseph Andrews. of those procedures by which an author “transcribes“ life.1. a sceptical examination of the conventions of realistic fiction. His father. that he was. the history of a private life. other interesting things to relate.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. which progressed at a slower pace than the growth of his son. the relation between life and literature.4. He tells us about his birth only in Volume III. we are drawn into an extremely irregular.” when a window sash fell over him owing to the maid’s carelessness.” He is fond of building strange theories and hypotheses about the smallest things. This makes his novel a work of metafiction*. that his brother Bobby died suddenly. does not manage to give a shape to his story. Fielding had demonstrated. Walter. at every point. Toby and the latter’s devoted servant. 5. Tristram Shandy: an unconventional autobiographical novel The title of the novel raises in the reader the expectation of an autobiographical narrative. that parody was a factor of innovation in the development of the novel as a literary genre. of his uncle. Walter Shandy. the priest who baptised Tristram. These few tragi-comic episodes from Tristram’s early life make him a “small HERO. he seems to have. He digresses continually.2. instead of a linear narration of a life's story and the rational coherence of an autobiographical retrospective account. who has read “the oddest books in the universe” and consequently has “the oddest way of thinking. and his long. at the age of five. as well as of Parson Yorick.” in every sense. The ultimate question that Sterne raises in his novel is the nature of fictional representation. Tristram. However. Eccentric characters in Tristram Shandy Tristram’s family is a collection of “originals. Laurence Sterne and the “anti-novel” Sterne’s only novel was published in instalments: its nine volumes appeared between 1760 and 1768.
the members of the Shandy family reach mutual understanding on the affective level. the early accidents in his son’s life cause him great distress. Understandably.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Among his most eccentric theories. modesty and. Sterne places emphasis on the sentimental nature of his heroes as an aspect of their “moral character. as comic eccentricity. The narrator sees laughter as the ultimate defense of the sensitive soul against life’s miseries and limitations. Sentimentalism and tragi-comic vision The characters’ obsessions and idiosyncrasies are an intellectual barrier in their communication. ironic terms. Wounded in Flanders. during the War of the Spanish Succession*. absorbed in this activity. good-humoured. but they can enter a dialogue of the hearts. He transforms his bowling green into a miniature military field. gathering “almost as many books on military frontispiece to vol. His narrative emphasises a tragi-comic vision of life. but the uniqueness of each individual mind. moral or psychological) that interests Sterne. but in Sterne’s novel all characters are eccentrics. It is not type (social.3.” defined as the capacity to mock at the blows of fate. There are many eccentric characters in 18th century fiction. Tristram Shandy displays a unique combination of sentimentalism and comedy. He becomes completely Tristram Shandy. with man as a vulnerable. were being fought on the continent. which were expected to influence a man’s conduct. However. The “nonsensical. doomed to pass from sorrow to sorrow.4. Tristram calls such obsessions hobby-horses. character and destiny.” forgetting (1760) everything in pursuit of his obsession.1 architecture as Don Quixote was found to have of chivalry. a quixotic figure forming an eccentric couple with corporal Trim. “My uncle Toby” is the most memorable character in the book. above all. which becomes almost a parody of human individuality. and this is made obvious in their endless conversations recorded in the novel. Its approach to the frustrations of life is called by Tristram “true Shandeism. and it is either dealt with sentimentally or revealed in its comic absurdity. pitiful creature. amiability. to 137 The Shandean view of life Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which influences all his thoughts and actions. They cannot share their thoughts. uncle Toby continues to live the reality of war through a substitute.” Toby Shandy is Sterne’s best accomplished sentimental character – the narrator continually praises his uncle’s good nature. 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. therefore. Shandean* book” that Tristram is trying to write is meant to do good to the reader’s both heart and head. uniqueness is achieved in extreme. where compassion and empathy bridge the gap created by their singularity. On the other hand. Suffering is a permanence in Tristram’s world. and discharged from the army. to preserve good humour in the middle of trouble. representing there the main battles as they William Hogarth. 5. Characterisation by hobby-horse is a negation of conventional means of realistic character delineation. gentleness. generosity.
It is a combination of wisdom and mirth*. Sterne introduces the theme of Fortune – a theme which he will develop with a characteristic mixture of sentimental pathos and comic wit. read again subchapter 5. Read this short chapter (Text 5.6.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel take a lightly ironic distance from suffering. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. which enables man to keep a healthy spirit and to get around the evils of life by joking about them. Ch. V. 138 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .. SAQ 10 In Vol.4. To remember the features of the tragic hero. in the Reader) attentively and explain why Tristram’s selfdescription as a “small HERO” suggests a tragi-comic vision of life. Write the answer in the space left below. restricting it to 12 lines / 120 words. see again the fall of princes. at the end of the unit. If the difference is considerable.3. I. in the Glossary to Unit 2. as well as the fragment from the Reader.
and to involve the reader both imaginatively and sentimentally. For example. Typographically. marking a moment of affectionate recollection. its unpredictable returns to various moments in the past. to a certain view of writing.e.4. watched as if by a slow motion camera. the “imperfections of words.” Not only as a man. by exploiting them in a parodic way. but also to how it is told.4. with its multitude of dashes.” The confused chronology and the digressive excesses frustrate also our expectation of a plot. frustrates our expectation of chronological linearity commonly associated with an autobiographical account. etc.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. for instance. Sterne’s rambling narrative. and he takes great delight in digressions. Tristram constantly oscillates between the comic despair at his incapacity to master his narrative and the delight he takes in complete narrative freedom. which he calls “the sunshine of reading. i. coherent plots. It is. The “Shandean” view of writing This ambivalent view of life corresponds. in Sterne’s novel.4. This impression is increased by Tristram’s effort to be exhaustive in his presentation. Faced with the problems of accurate representation through words. but also as an author. points of suspension. Tristram is earnestly trying to tell the story of his life and his opinions as accurately as possible. Digressive narrative Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 139 . Sterne defamiliarises them. 5. with its blank pages for the reader to fill in. there are several dedications scattered through the book. The difficulty he experiences as a writer is due to the limits of language. He delights in minute descriptions of postures and small gestures. The defamiliarisation of realistic conventions By taking extreme freedoms with narrative and compositional conventions. drawings and graphs. there are numberless digressions and interpolated stories. Tristram has the consciousness of his tragi-comic predicament. the restriction of the hero’s “life” to a few episodes breaks the convention of autobiographical focus. by drawing his attention not only to what is told. The narrator explicitly refuses to keep the story straight. and gives the impression of stagnation.5. The structure of the book is equally odd. even a black sheet introduced at the death of Yorick. does not seem to move towards any climax. The zigzagging narrative. makes the reader aware of them. the book is a comic oddity. only in the middle of Volume III that we find the author’s Preface. so different from Fielding’s tight. asterisks. Tristram resorts to other means of communication. He thus exaggerates parodically the realistic pursuit of accuracy and immediacy. 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.
6. i. It is a half-amused. Sterne’s particular approach to narrative correponds to a certain vision of human experience. half-comically – the distinction between subjective and objective time. Tristram constantly draws attention to the way in which he manipulates fictional time. formless reality. works which call attention to their own devices.e. on the author’s vision of life. the process of its own writing. There are themes in Sterne’s Metafictional novel which may be called “metafictional”. The unpredictable. In volume VI.e. Tristram Shandy may be called the first philosophical novel in English. One such theme in Tristram Shandy is that of human communication – or rather incommunication –. halfsceptical meditation on the condition of literature and its relation with reality.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel 5. The main subject of Sterne’s novel is. experimental character affords the reader a glimpse into the novelist’s dilemmas and arsenal of choices. Tristram draws the narrative “lines. random course of the narrative has a correspondent in the theme of Fortune. Tristram Shandy questions the mimetic illusion that realistic fiction endeavours to create. as it explores – halfseriously. the permanent inquiry into what a novel can do and cannot do. Metafictionally. The meaning of metafiction depends. As metafiction. Its extravagant. Basically. The randomness of the narrative is a mirror of the narrator’s sense of his own life as tragi-comically governed by accident. i. 140 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which is connected. making the reader aware that “literary time” is arbitrary and conventional. the narrated time and the time of reading. also concerned with the way in which consciousness refracts external reality. Another prominent theme with a metafictional relevance is that The theme of time of time and its relation with the imagination. at the structural level. however. Sterne’s literary treatment of the notion of duration makes him a precursor of 20th century modernist writers like James Joyce and Virginia Woolf.” with their digressions. in the first four volumes. on the possibilities of fiction to render in an intelligible pattern the elusive. of life as pure chance. they may be related to themes the problem of fictional representation and its limits. the theme of time corresponds to the narrator’s concern with the distinction between the time of writing. with the narrator’s desperate effort to be allinclusive and his incapacity of managing his narrative. ultimately.4. Tristram Shandy as metafiction The constant reference to the devices and conventions operating in fiction. into the “laboratory” of his literary consciousness. makes Tristram Shandy a work of metafiction. metafiction is fiction about fiction.
6.4. 3. the narrator stops and considers his eccentric way of telling it..The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel SAQ 11 Text 5. In this way. Write them in the spaces indicated below. Instead of continuing the story. 2. which he discusses in the very text of the work. the author reveals to the reader one aspect of his conception of writing.7.5. 1. at the end of the unit. go again through subchapters 5. The fragment is practically about the writing of the novel. and read the fragment attentively once more. and 5. Compare your answers with those provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. If they differ significantly. Read the text and find three reasons for Tristram’s praise of digressions. Henry William Bunbury: Uncle Toby and Trim reviving a scene of war on the bowling green (1773) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 141 .4. using no more than 3 lines / 30 words for each of them. in the Reader illustrates the metafictional dimension of Sterne’s novel.
Since its settlement on the literary scene. However. At the beginning of the 18th century. which has dealt with four major novelists of this age: Daniel Defoe. We have only concentrated on one novel for each writer. tests the possibilities and limitations of the newly-born literary genre in an experimental. Their works illustrate various aspects and tendencies in the evolution of the genre. and Laurence Sterne. readers along the ages have been able to find a wealth of symbolic meanings and a story of archetypal significance. This is reflected in the wide diversity of directions in which the novel developed in the 18th century. You have formed an idea of this diversity from the chapters of this unit. the novel was a minor form. on the other hand. Defoe illustrates best the new narrative realism that emerged in fiction. The absence of norms and models made it an exceptionally flexible and inclusive form. to the palpable reality of common objects and actions. in his novels of manners. this genre has enjoyed unrivalled popularity.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. in a work so committed to the matterof-fact. 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. but his interest in the psychological complexity of the individual is completed by a remarkable sensitivity to social aspects. Samuel Richardson. who shares with Fielding the attraction to comedy and parody. and with Robinson Crusoe the middle class hero is imposed on the literary scene. Henry Fielding. selected as an illustration of the most characteristic features of his art. Richardson takes the novel in the direction of the minute analysis of emotion and feeling. Fielding. completely ignored by Augustan poetics. 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 . Lastly. Sterne. self-conscious novel that makes him highly modern.
gaiety. gentle: of good breeding. which became popular in England through translation and imitation. literacy: the ability to read and write. jester: a professional clown employed by a king or nobleman. a hobbyhorse is a toy. tone. rogue) – belongs. see again the Glossary in Unit 1).3 and the Glossary in Unit 3. the way of telling the story through a character’s letters or through an exchange of letters. who achieves success owing to beauty and virtue. lifelikeness: closeness to life. “beyond fiction”. hobby horse: a favourite topic or an obsessive. minuteness: exactness in the rendering of small detail. literally: novel of formation. harpsichord: an old musical instrument.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. exact representation of life. omniscient: describes the perspective of a narrator who appears to know all about the characters and their action. burlesque: see the Glossary in Unit 1. parson: an Anglican priest in charge of a local church. and he seeks social integration. mirth: laughter. mimetic: the adjective derived from mimesis (Greek: imitation). consisting of a stick with a figure of a horse’s head at one end. fixed idea.e. It was Aristotle who articulated this theory. in which the poor heroine. or education. Bildungsroman: German term. Cinderella is the prototype of the obscure and neglected young person.e. in which its form becomes explicitly its subject. or “narcissistic” – i. persecuted by her stepmother and ugly stepsisters. but producing a different sound. happiness. to the lower ranks of society. parody: the satirical imitation of a serious work. booby: silly or stupid person. a term designating the contemporary mode of fiction – postmodern fiction – which is essentially self-reflexive. whose style. ends up by marrying Prince Charming. Cinderella: an old fairy story. Concretely. epistolary manner: in a novel. attitude and subject are deliberately distorted so as to make them appear ridiculous. belonging to a high social class (as in gentleman). metafiction: literally. He is forced to 143 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . The letter (epistle) as a literary species was widely used in the 18th century. played like a piano. a Fool. The hero – the picaro (i. which dominated Western aesthetics until the end of the 18th century. a term associated with the aesthetic view according to which the work of art is an imitation – a representation – of reality. characteristically. felix culpa: see subchapter 3. fun. picaresque: the origin of English picaresque novels is in the Spanish picaresque fiction of the 16th century.
The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel • • • • • • find his way in a hostile world by means of his resourcefulness and ingenuity.e. honest and brave hidalgo (i. The high aspirations of this generous. like a knight-errant of former times. Puritan: see the Glossary in Unit 1. Shandean: the adjective that Tristram derives from his family name. 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). 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. Romantic: see Romanticism in the Glossary in Unit 1. which stands in an ironic contrast with the successive triumphs of the noble hero of romance). Don Quixote is an implicit debate on the relation between fiction and reality. “quixotic” indicates an unrealistically optimistic and impractically idealistic approach to life. having often to go through the experience of humiliation and frustration. quixotic: the word describes a character moulded after Cervantes’s Don Quixote. priggish: describes a person who is strict about rules and correct behaviour and thinks him/herself morally superior to others. Stimulated by the numberless stories of romantic heroism that he has read. the famous satirical romance in which the hero’s sense of reality is altered by his obsession with the romantic chivalric ideal. 1615). War of the Spanish Succession: 1702-1713. Spain and Bavaria in this war fought over the disputed succession to the Spanish throne. author of Don Quixote de la Mancha (1605. • 144 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Britain joined Austria. on a quest that is both admirable and ridiculous. Don Quixote starts. Prussia and the Netherlands against France.
your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%). in Book II of Gulliver’s Travels. which presents Swift as a master of allegorical satire. Mention at least four aspects in support of this idea.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Send-away assignment no. as well as the presentation of the novel you choose to discuss. What is the double symbolic significance of Robinson’s island.1.2. and 5. Gulliver offers him the secret of the recipe for gunpowder. in grading your paper. in the context of the novel’s pattern of Puritan autobiography? Your answer should be no longer than 10 lines /100 words. Limit your answer to 25 lines / 250 words. Horrified. • the coherence.1. 2. 2 will count as 20% in your final assessment. in the Reader represents a fragment from Robinson Crusoe in which the motif of the island is particularly prominent. 2 This assignment includes tasks concerning both Unit 4 and Unit 5. clarity.4.4. Remember that. and Gulliver’s new humiliation will make him partial in the subsequent description of the king’s rule. therefore. Limit your answer to 35 lines/350 words.. Text 5. 1. You might find it helpful to revise subchapters 5. and to the illustration of those values and attitudes in a particular novel. SAA no. You may refer both to the general circumstances of the novel’s emergence and its concerns.1.. In order to win the good graces of the king. You will have. in the Reader presents an incident at the court of Brobdingnag. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 30%. and its contrast with European civilisation as Gulliver presents it. Pay special attention to the instructions for each task. with special attention to subchapter 4. the king rejects this tribute. revealing candidly to him the “benefits” of this invention. to revise the preceding unit. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 50%. The weight of this task in the assessment of this SAA is 20%. as illustrated by this fragment. The novel as a literary genre both reflects and helps consolidate values and attitudes which define the Age of the Enlightenment. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 145 . who had just pronounced a severe judgement on his civilisation. 3. Read the fragment carefully and analyse: • the ironic-satirical treatment of Gulliver himself. Text 4. • the features that make the kingdom of Brobdingnag a utopia of reasonable government.
on contemporary social reality and on the experience of the common individual. and also authors of novels. She will accept humbly her social inferiority.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1. … novels focused on the ordinary and the familiar aspects of life. 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. pragmatism. industriousness. 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. He delights the reader with an extraordinary adventure and a story of success. plainness. the capacity for learning from mistakes. but she lives with the deep conviction that in the spiritual order of a Christian world. immediacy. patience. she may be deprived of the privilege of class and fortune. 6. resilience. realistic account. rationality. inventiveness. SAQ 2 1. In the social order. all souls are equal. vividness. SAQ 5 factuality. 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 . optimism. 5. which is given an air of authenticity by the meticulous. 4. and by the form of autobiographical record. 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. SAQ 3 Defoe’s own phrase refers to the purpose of his novels: to entertain and to instruct. but this is a way of accomplishing more efficiently his honest intention of conveying a moral message. 4. By contrast with the escapist spirit of romances. SAQ 4 Tenacity. 3. 2. concreteness. 5. The rise of the middle classes … coincides with the emergence of the novel as a literary genre. sharp sense of observation. Women were … a consistent part of the novel’s reading public. 2. He thus “cheats” the reader with the illusion of truth. 3.
3.T. 2. 2. It prevents the writing from ending – it allows the writer to go on indefinitely. Her statement reflects the strength of her sense of individual worth. It allows a more profound insight into the character’s mind.e unfavourable] accidents” is in comic contrast with the ideas of tragic disaster and the fall of the great.F SAQ 9 1. it enables the author to give greater psychological complexity to the characters.” but in “pitiful misadventures. It creates a greater sense of suspense and anticipation. 2. you should think first of the features of a tragic hero. SAQ 10 In formulating your answer.T. but in the way in which the individual embodies general traits of human nature. 3. since the letters usually record moments of crisis in the character’s experience.T. as well as a paradoxical combination of social conformity and rebelliousness. 3F.T. enjoying title. His style: while the style of Defoe and Richardson is closer to the plainness of common speech. Fielding finds the omniscient point of view more suitable to his intentions. forbidding the reading “appetite” to fail and bringing in variety. Fielding displays the elegance and refinement of the Augustan ideal of style. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 147 . who write in the first person. 3.F. 5. that is. The use of digressions is meant to show Tristram’s narrative skill and constitutes a mark of his originality. and this impression of unmediaded communication strengthens his belief in the character’s sincerity. Digressions keep the reader’s curiosity awake. This technique may thus give a dramatic quality to the narrative. 8.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel will. 7. 2. He is always a prominent figure. The reader is made witness to the most private thoughts of the character. 6. they create a sort of suspense.T. This is not Tristram’s case. his gifts and virtues set him above common people. The narrative manner: unlike Defoe and Richardson.” The image of the “ungracious Duchess” – Fortune – pelting him with a series of “cross [i. In this way. which makes her sensitive to any form of power abuse. He is a “small HERO” because the misfortunes of his life do not consist in some “great or signal evil. The conception of character: he is interested not in the uniqueness of individuals. SAQ 8 1. SAQ 11 1. wealth and power. 4. living and the act of writing overlap each other. he is concerned with human types. SAQ 7 1.
The English Novel. 179-195. 598-602. 217-231. 712-718. Daiches. David. 76-80) 2. 143-163. 37-42.3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). Cornelia. Walter. 701-704. vol. 234-238) 148 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . 43-46.The Age of the Enlightenment: the rise of the novel Further reading 1. 1969 (pp. The English Eighteenth Century: The Novel in Its Beginnings. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. Editura Universităţii Suceava. 1991 (pp. Macsiniuc. 731-736) 3. 53-59. Allen. 2003 (pp. 116127. Penguin Books Limited. A Critical History of English Literature.
2.4. 6.2. 6.2. 6.4. 6. 18.104.22.168.22.214.171.124.7.3. The Seasons William Cowper. 6. 6. 6.1. 126.96.36.199.2.1. 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.4.4. 6. 6.3. 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. 6. 6.1.1. The Task William Blake – the visionary artist Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake.4.4.4. 6. 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 .2.1.4. 188.8.131.52.English pre-Romantic poetry UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY Unit Outline 6 6. 6. 6.3.5. 6.
For instance. From the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling 150 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . which in turn favoured the emergence of the cult of Feeling. Pre-Romantic tendencies in 18th century poetry The eighteenth century. discipline. The sentimental novel* (e. but also in a new kind of meditative poetry. and Fielding). led to an increasing attention to emotional response. was eminently the Age of Reason. This new poetic trend ran counter to the optimistic confidence of the Age of Reason. regarded art as the product of civilisation. 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. the century of the Enlightenment was not without paradoxes and contradictions. which became the vehicle for the expression of private feeling and assumed a personal voice. Swift. and cultivated its public relevance. whose literary-artistic expression was the Neoclassical doctrine. Addison. 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. and for night as a setting. harmony. Pope. One trend in the 18th century poetry of meditation was the preference for the expression of melancholy and dark thoughts. the century of the Enlightenment*. Neoclassicism*. Literature was called to deal with matters of public interest. subjective experience is displayed not only in fiction. The interest in individual psychology.g. with its emphasis on order. Like any modern age. however. elegance and decorum*.1.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. The concern with personal. Samuel Richardson) is one manifestation of this tendency. The optimism and pragmatism of a rational age which believed in progress were reflected in literature as well. as is proved by the works of the great Augustan writers (Steele.
It consisted in long blank verse* meditations on such things as earthly vanity.1. It is in this tradition that one of the most popular poems in English must be placed: Elegy written in a Country Churchyard. In 1765. but its subject and mood are preRomantic. which awakened a steady interest in older poetic styles. The fascination with the Middle Ages is another feature which illustrated the rise of the Romantic sensibility. and the dominant tone is that of nostalgia and regret. which contrasts with the Augustan focus on contemporary civilisation. Macpherson’s “Ossianic poems” are pieces of highly rhetorical poetic prose. whose life had passed in complete anonymity. Thomas Percy published a collection of mediaeval ballads. 1782) What Macpherson presented as a great primitive Celtic epic turned out to be entirely his own imaginary creation. death and immortality. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 151 . known as the Graveyard School of poetry. The interest in early poetry Another tendency which announced a change in literary sensibility was a new sense of the past. with tombstones lit by the pale moon – contributed to the birth of the taste for Gothic. Macpherson claimed to have translated these poems from “the Gaelic or Erse* language. 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. Young and other poets formed a distinct trend in the mideighteenth century. supposed to have lived in the 3rd century A. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. is the most outstanding expression of this new spirit in poetry. Night Thoughts (1742-1745). The perfect form of Gray’s poem shows his classical training. and folk literature in general. The lamentations of the blind bard evoke an ancient world of heroic virtue. whose basic motifs were the shortness and sorrows of life and the inexorable passage of time.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. He also claimed that their author was the (painted by Nicolai Abildgaard.1. legendary Irish bard and hero Ossian. It begins with the contemplation of the landscape. Its gloomy setting – the churchyard.” and to have collected them in the Ossian Highlands of Scotland*. This new interest was reflected in the curiosity about “primitive* poetry” – biblical poetry. imitating partly the cadence of biblical verses and of Milton’s blank verse. published in 1765 by James Macpherson (17361796).1. His long poem in nine books.D. The poetry of melancholy meditation Edward Young is one of the most important representatives of this new kind of reflective poetry. Celtic* and Norse* legend and mythology. wild. The most spectacular manifestation of this interest is the volume Poems of Ossian. sublime landscapes.2. Edward Young (1683-1765) 6. and it exerted an immense influence both in England and on the Continent. but its influence on the birth of Romanticism* in England and on the Continent was huge. by Thomas Gray (1716-1771). and misty.
with its gloomy atmosphere. b. aspiring to poetic fame. the victim of an (1856) insensitive and hostile world. imagination. SAQ 1 Read the partial statements below and match them. at the end of the unit. The completed sentences will describe aspects of the emergence of a pre-Romantic current in 18th century poetry. … for the pre-Romantic poetry of melancholy meditation. reflected… 4. The melancholy poetry of the Graveyard School. c. Chatterton committed suicide. … the pre-Romantic interest in the Middle Ages and popular poetry. If you have failed to make the right match for every sentence. of Thomas Percy’s collection of ballads. regarding him as a martyr.English pre-Romantic poetry In 1770. … as well as Gothic fiction. … a. Write the correct sequel in the space provided for each sentence. read again the previous subchapters. d. Check your answers by looking in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. 152 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . young Thomas Chatterton (1752-1770). with its taste for the macabre and the supernatural. … Chatterton is also the author of a literary “fraud. When his literary fraud was exposed. who claimed to have translated an ancient Celtic epic poem by the legendary Ossian. The churchyard was a favourite setting … 2. published a volume of poems presented as belonging to the mediaeval poet-monk Thomas Rowley. … 3. is a pre-Romantic reaction against Neoclassic literary decorum. Like James Macpherson. The coming generation of Romantic poets turned by Henry Wallis him into a legend. These poems displayed lyric grace and the promise of talent.” presenting his own poems as authentic mediaeval verse. The publication. 1. Reliques of Ancient English Poetry. but they proved to be (like the Ossianic poems) entirely the product of Chatterton’s inflamed Death of Chatterton. in 1765.
The emphasis on sentimental response. the new feeling for nature – these were features indicating that literary taste was changing.3. an interest developed in popular forms of poetry. 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.1. the interest in rural life and its contrast with civilisation. the interest in the local and national past. the state of nature began to be idealised.2. the inspiration from folk myths and legends. The great novelists (e. Elements of a pre-Romantic sensibility can be found all along the century. but also literary forms. valued for their simplicity and directness by the first Romantics (William Wordsworth. William Blake would call the heroic couplet* the “great cage” of Augustan poetry. There was a growing suspicion that civilisation may have a corrupting effect on man’s innate goodness. and indeed the tendency along the century was to abandon it for poetic forms that allowed more freedom. such as the song and the ballad. In the latter part of the century. and the 18 th century abounded in optimistic utopias about an idyllic. Towards the end of the century. Under the influence of Jean Jacques Rousseau*. This change in taste concerned not only themes and subjects. The sentimental opposition between town and country was to become a convention in 18 th century literature. Henry Fielding) would often associate the turbulent.g.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. patriarchal society in which men could enjoy fully their natural right to freedom. characteristic of the Enlightenment. busy life of the city with moral confusion. towards the highest achievement of man’s Reason: civilisation itself. In the following subchapters. and the simplicity of country life with moral virtue. The rural universe in 18th century poetry The emerging Age of Sensibility oriented the critical spirit. sometimes within the context of Augustan conventions. Samuel Taylor Coleridge). A return to blank verse – for which Shakespeare and Milton were the great models – allowed greater flexibility of expression. and the emergence of a distinct poetic attitude towards nature. The pre. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 153 .Romantic sensibility and the interest in new poetic forms The transition from the Augustan to the Romantic age was slow and long. The return to blank verse 6.
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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Samuel Johnson said. Thomson practically inaugurated the trend of descriptive-meditative poetry. Thomson is also famous for the patriotic lyrics that he wrote for the song Rule. James Thomson. and the moral sentiment. poetic renderings of current notions of natural history.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. and the apparent cruelty of winter. The Augustans were interested in nature only to the extent that it helped them emphasise the conquests of civilization. “Winter. Thomson evokes the glory and joy of reviving nature in spring. than the works of Nature. James Thomson (1700-1748) 158 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the splendour of summer.3. etc.3. with a remarkable attention to detail and precision of notation. The conventional Augustan “local” poem (or “topographical” poem*) looked at nature from the perspective of historical or classical mythological associations. praise of friends. patriotic enthusiasm. becomes an object of interest in itself. It appealed both to the Augustans and to the Romantics. 6. in many generations of readers. manifest as early as the 1730s. As Dr. Each of the four parts of the poem describes seasonal aspects of nature and rural life. the peace of autumn – bringer of “Philosophic Melancholy” –. Pre-Romantic nature poetry One of the most significant shifts in poetic sensibility was the new attitude to nature. nature. in its magnificence and diversity. more amusing. exerting a considerable influence on both of them. His poem educated. The Seasons has a unity ensured by the recurrent themes and motifs related to the observable natural universe. political comments.” Thomson confesses that he knows “of no other subject more elevating. an expression of national pride. and that he never yet has felt what Thomson impresses. Britannia. the philosophical reflection. The Seasons In the Preface to the fourth part of The Seasons.1. but also the feeling for it. With James Thomson (1700-1748) and his long poem The Seasons (1726-1730).” Thomson’s ambitious poem in blank verse is remarkably inclusive: its descriptions of nature occasion indeed frequent meditations on a variety of contemporary ideas and interests. as well as his glorification of “retirement in solitude” as the best state in which to “sing the works of nature.” The Seasons marked an important moment in 18th century poetry. His praise of nature and of the countryside. not only the perception of nature. in which the descriptive detail was often used in order to create a certain mood. In spite of its eclectic nature.” inspired many other poets along the 18th century. more ready to awake the poetical enthusiasm. “The reader of The Seasons wonders that he never saw before what Thomson shows him. It contains reflections on the natural and social condition of man and on Nature as the manifestation of the divine ordering mind.
from the third part. How does the Philosophic Melancholy influence the poet? Answer below. living in retirement from the city.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 4 Read Text 6.” Autumnal nature favours a contemplative-meditative mood. but his subjects anticipate the Romantic sensibility. in a paragraph of no more than 6 lines / 60 words. Like Thomson and Collins.2. in popular superstitions and the supernatural. read text C again. He reaches perfection in his famous Ode to Evening (1746). and he displayed the Augustan taste for stylistic refinement. but his blank verse poem has a much more personal tone. which actually inspired Thomson).. unrhymed stanzas. One of Thomson’s great admirers was William Collins (17211759).3. records his observations and reflections. which the poet calls “Philosophic Melancholy” (remember Milton’s Il Penseroso*. William Cowper. the poem The Task (1785) by William Cowper (1731-1800) reflects a similar attraction to the theme of nature. with its short. religious meditations and character sketches accompany Cowper’s celebration of rural domestic happiness and communion with nature. He was interested in the mediaeval past. and his feeling for Nature is that of a pre-Romantic. Cowper displays an Augustan concern for elegance and refinement in expression. Passages of moral and political commentary. more carefully. in which he captures with precision and delicacy the crepuscular atmosphere. in which a sensitive and thoughtful Christian. whose work brings into harmony the various tendencies in 18th century poetry. William Collins 6.3. social satire. Compare your answer with the one given in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. which represents a fragment from Thomson’s The Seasons – more exactly. The Task Much closer in time to the beginning of the Romantic Age. If there should be major differences. The Task has actually been described as a spiritual autobiography. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 159 . He preferred the classical form of the ode*. “Autumn. at the end of the unit.
Cowper displays a remarkable eye for detail and a landscape-painter’s sense of perspective. Wordsworth. in the 18th century. T. extracted from Cowper’s The Task. Read again the fragment if you answer is significantly different.4. in the Reader. SAQ 5 Text 6. however. but the joy of communion with friends. and his expressions of gratitude for the spiritual comfort and superior joys that it offers anticipated the first generation of English Romantics (W. Cowper’s love of nature is closely linked to his love of the countryside. 1856 The Task. 160 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . As a poet of nature. with its vices and follies. Retirement to the countryside does not mean for him idle solitude – it is not isolation that he seeks in rural nature. The contemplation of nature has a healing effect on Cowper. represents one of the most memorable statements. concerning the opposition country/town.e. He praises the simple pleasures. / Paradise that has survived the fall. indicate an affectionate observer. in which he can find shelter against depression and anxiety. at the end of the unit. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. he becomes aware of the instability of this last retreat from the confusions and corruption of modern urban civilisation. domestic activities. S. and of simple.” Sometimes. which he opposes to the civilisation of the city. Rural “domestic happiness” seems to him “the only bliss.English pre-Romantic poetry illustration by Birket Foster. Read this fragment and explain why Cowper finds the countryside superior to the urban world. Your answer should not exceed 10 lines / 100 words. affected] the country. His meticulous descriptions of countryside scenery and animal life. like gardening. the peace and quiet of village life. of the seasonal diversity of natural aspects. Coleridge). fearing that “The town has tinged [i.
he turns his attention to the rural world.1. to a large extent. Each copy was then coloured by hand. to the special way in which he produced his work. widening the range of meanings. Songs of Innocence and of Experience (1794). Blake did not publish his poems in conventional printed form. our sense of a common fate for all humanity. Gray. and displays the same humanitarian spirit as his contemporaries. the rural setting. Thomson. and this laborious process restricted the number of copies that Blake could produce. Like other pre-Romantic poets. these various dimensions of his works shed light on each other. Apart from a volume of early verse. the visionary artist William Blake holds a unique place in the history of English literature. exerting influence only on a small circle of friends and admirers. and he rejected the classical standards of style. 6.English pre-Romantic poetry Both Thomson and Cowper see a strong connection between love of nature and a humanitarian spirit. He was an admirer of Shakespeare. These beliefs – in Nature as a moral teacher and as a guide for imagination – were central to the creed of the first Romantics. The combination of calligraphic text. but also a gifted painter and engraver. “unfit for human fellowship” and “dead” to “love and friendship both” (Cowper). Milton. Blake as a pre-Romantic poet Blake is often regarded as a pre-Romantic poet. and recognised as one of the most original creators. He was not only a poet. He was a relatively marginal figure during his lifetime. represents symbolically the uncorrupt order of nature. all Blake’s major poems were composed in this way.4. A heart that is insensitive to nature is a hard heart. He used a special method for engraving and printing the handwritten text. In Blake. He associates nature with the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 161 . Nature “nurses” the sympathy for our fellow beings. finding literary inspiration in the simplicity and directness of popular poetry. whose attitudes and concerns define him sharply as an anti-Augustan. and Macpherson. William Blake.civilisation. and being regarded as an eccentric artist. It was in the latter half of the 19th century that he was rediscovered by a group of poets and painters. In his first great illuminated work. in the tone and rhythms of Biblical psalms and religious hymns. picture and decoration reminds of the painful. which was accompanied by drawings and decorations. Blake’s late fame is due. minute work of mediaeval miniaturists and their illuminated* manuscripts. The theme of childhood in this work enables Blake to explore the opposition nature . and his creative personality manifested itself in combined and complementary modes of expression.4. William Blake (1757-1827) 6. The charms of nature have also an almost magic influence on human creativity and depth of thought. rendered in its pastoral simplicity.
Plate from the poem Jerusalem (1805-1820). whom Blake (like the other Romantics) venerated. Like the other English Romantics. 6.” He is a true Romantic in his belief that poetic creation is a spontaneous.” or “I write when commanded by spirits. which oppresses man in the name of Reason and Progress. One of Blake’s mythological creatures in these poems. a tribute to Milton. says. and whom he saw as the embodiment of the revolutionary impulse. and his whole work. in a way.2. Blake was a rebel.” Blake worshipped Imagination as the only true way to spiritual freedom. / I will not reason and compare: my business is to create. in Blake’s last poem. They are. in which Blake creates a mythology of his own. and he denounces the evils of civilisation. by William Blake 162 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .English pre-Romantic poetry innocence of man in his condition before the Fall – the “childhood” of humanity –. and he opposed to them the “Daughters of Inspiration. a prophet. The classical Muses were for him the “Daughters of Memory”*. owing to the intensity with which he proclaimed the primacy of the Imagination over Reason and his deep conviction that the poet was a seer. unpremeditated act. for instance: “I copy Imagination.” asserting that ”Imagination has nothing to do with Memory. is one of the most powerful assertions of Romantic creativity.” This is Blake’s own creed. He distrusted all systems of thought and institutions that restrained man’s freedom and imagination.4. or be enslaved by another man’s. Blake. He insisted on the visionary and inspired quality of his writings – he asserted. Jerusalem: “I must create a system. original and strange. Los*. the Romantic visionary Blake is also frequently assimilated to the first generation of Romantic poets. His rebellion against the “systems” which limit the energies of the Imagination takes a literary form in his Prophetic Books*.
The subchapter that follows will acquaint you with some of the poems illustrating Blake’s “double vision” in Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Blake enjoyed a great popularity during his lifetime. T F 7.” They build a charming picture of the universe of childhood. the association of childhood with edenic nature is opposed to civilisation as the fallen condition of man.3. T F 4. or Cradle Song offer a glimpse into a world filled with simple. by their remarkable lyrical delicacy. In Songs of Innocence and of Experience. Poems like Infant Joy. Blake is a creator of myths in his Prophetic Books. As the poet emphasises in the Introduction. Blake composed his first significant work: Songs of Innocence. and its origin was visionary experience. T F 2. The Blossom.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 Read the following sentences and identify the four true statements which describe features of Blake’s work. The Echoing Green. Circle appropriately T (true) or F (false). T F 3. which are the expression of his Romantic rebellion against all forms of constraint. 1. poetic creation was the spontaneous fruit of inspiration.e. of the world seen through the eyes of the child. The Shepherd. revise the whole subchapter. T F 5. 163 Songs of Innocence (1789) Title page of Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . If you have made mistaken choices. their clarity of expression and their musicality. Laughing Song. which echoed the rhythms of popular verse. with its repertoire of rhetorical conventions. The extreme formal simplicity and the apparent lack of sophistication of these short poems anticipated the Romantic rejection of poetic diction*. The theme of childhood in Songs of Innocence In 1789 – the year of the French Revolution –. The main influence in Blake’s work were the ancient Greek and Latin poets admired by the Augustans. T F Check your answers in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. and the three statements that are false. What chiefly impressed Blake in Milton’s Paradise Lost was its astonishing display of classical-humanistic erudition. these are “happy songs / Every child may joy [i. that is. Blake’s works combine the handwritten text with picture and decoration – a technique that reminds of mediaeval manuscripts. It was the year of a revolution in poetry as well. 6. echoing with laughter and sustained by love and by the belief in the goodness of nature.4. For Blake. Spring. innocent delights. T F 6. at the end of the unit. As a poet. Songs of Innocence marked a new departure in English poetry. enjoy] to hear.
suggesting the child’s closeness to a protective divinity. in Nurse’s Song. love. Besides the children themselves. childhood represents the unfallen state of man. with white hair. the guardian angel.e.” Throughout his work.” 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. Blake filtered these ideas through his own intense idealism and his unconventional religious beliefs. The adult figures represented in these poems share the child’s freshness of perception and capacity for joy. or even Jesus. and every child is a manifestation of the Divine Imagination in the world. the shepherd. in his natural tendency to virtue. The child has a kind of wisdom which comes from the freshness and freedom of his imagination. The pastoral figure of the shepherd receives in Blake a Christian connotation. which a proper education should develop. In The Echoing Green. The pastoral setting symbolises the closeness of man to a benevolent nature and the bliss enjoyed by man in Paradise.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. does not mean ignorance. the Songs of Innocence display protective figures like the caring mother or nurse.” can “laugh away care. The innocence associated with childhood is for him the equivalent of the original state of paradisal innocence. gratified desire. although the sun has set. with which Blake was acquainted. 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. and absence of frustration or inhibition. Blake rejected the praise of Reason as man’s supreme faculty and proclaimed instead the importance of man’s “Poetic Genius. The good shepherd. associated with childhood. It is a world in which evil has not penetrated and in which there is no suffering. “Old John. According to him. meadow]”. who express their candid feelings of piety and uninhibited joy. The world of Innocence is the paradise of freedom. allows the children more time to play “on the green [i. Rousseau believed in the original innocence of man. Infant Joy (Songs of Innocence) 164 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . For Blake. because she has the empathic understanding of the children’s need for freedom. Innocence. taking care of his flock of innocent lambs. is a biblical allusion. In these poems. Blake identifies Jesus with the Imagination. and the perception of childhood was greatly influenced by Jean Jacques Rousseau’s ideas. The nurse.
Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 165 . revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. and in which he represents to himself its “making. at the end of the unit. in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. which reproduces Blake’s poem The Lamb. in the Reader.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 7 Read Text 6. What makes this poem a Song of Innocence? Start from the idea that The Lamb may be read as the vision of Innocence on the act of Creation. If there should be a significant difference between them.” Answer in the space below. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. Focus on the way in which the child imagines the creator of the lamb.5.
The poet attacks the tyranny exercised on the individual by the church and state. the reader cannot miss the implicit reference to the social reality of children’s exploitation and cruel treatment.e. for instance. Like the chimney sweeper. but the child in the poem is comforted by the vision of the Angel. 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. Blake’s speakers in these poems are often bitter and ironic. nature. 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.4. when this life ends. 6. Ironic implications in Songs of Innocence Blake’s graceful Songs of Innocence may appear to be simple and transparent. which is a promise of divine mercy. disease. the ethical and social implications are more obvious.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. In London. The fall from Innocence: Songs of Experience Blake developed such implications into open statements. The fall from the paradise of Innocence to Experience is the entrance in a world of rules and constraints. The world is seen through the eyes of an angry observer. However. full of indignation and anger. for instance.5. standing equal before God. A poem like A Poison Tree points out Title page of the murderous effects of secret hate. The Clod and the Pebble Songs of Experience contrasts selfless with selfish love. even sarcastic. poverty and oppression. the thirst for war. the greed of the powerful and their indifference to the sufferings caused by social injustice. the child has a wonderful vision of all souls freed from their “clouds” of flesh – black or white –. 166 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . but. it is suggested that human suffering and oppression is the result of “mind-forged manacles*”. society and divinity. and Nurse’s Song shows the (1794) jealousy consuming an adult who has lost the vision of Innocence. In The Little Black Boy – an anti-slavery poem –. 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. often.4. In The Chimney Sweeper*. in the poems that he added in 1794: the Songs of Experience. the reader cannot help noticing paradoxes and contradictions. protesting against the evils of his time. In Songs of Experience. The serene and peaceful pastoral setting of the world of Innocence is set in opposition with the sombre world of Experience. or the mind of others. hate. Beyond the children’s innocent visions of happiness and harmony. in which man’s lot is hard work. love and joy have been replaced by fear. which deny man his freedom.4. of the prejudices and constraints with which man “enchains” his own mind. a gloomy reality makes itself felt sometimes. of “stony laws*”. i. In the fallen state of Experience. envy and deceit. The complete work offered now a set of contrary symbolic visions of man.
This suggests that the world of Experience is more opaque and uncertain. you]?) and his own answer. at the end of the unit. revise this subchapter and read the poem more attentively. If it should differ in major respects. and the rhythms of the poems are also more difficult.6. Compare your answer with the one provided in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs. SAQ 8 In Blake’s poem Infant Sorrow. in a paragraph of 10 lines / 100 words at the most. innocent question (“Little Lamb. provoking more anxiety than certainty. The two stanzas of The Lamb contain the child’s simple. 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 the Reader – and find out in its lines suggestions for at least one aspect which defines this “dangerous” world. by ambiguity and even obscurity. Knowledge in the world of Experience The clarity and directness of Songs of Innocence is replaced.e. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 167 . but also if this creator is also that of the gentle lamb. with no explicit answer. Quote the respective words or line(s) and give your comment in the space below.4. who made thee [i. The speaker in the latter poem wonders not only who created the “fearful symmetry” of the powerful. dangerous tiger. The implication is that knowledge in the state of Experience is always incomplete and fragmentary. Read this poem – Text 6. the event of a child’s birth becomes the symbol of the fall into the world of Experience.English pre-Romantic poetry 6.6. while The Tyger consists only in an accumulation of questions. in Songs of Experience.
but also complementary aspects of man’s imagination. bearing even the same titles. as Blake indicated in the subtitle. since those are “babes reduced to misery. 168 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the spectator to the same scene has a quite different vision.” which lead to contrary visions. He sees nothing “holy” in the beautiful picture. indeed. but with ways of seeing and feeling. in Blake’s view: “Attraction and Repulsion. compared with “flowers” and “Thames’ waters.4. served by the institutionalised churches.” The angry speaker protests against the duplicity of a society that feeds its poor “with cold and usurous* hand. which allows the rich and powerful of this world to ease their conscience and “buy” Heaven by occasional and festive acts of charity.” The idea of Heaven as a reward of happiness for earthly misery.” Blake’s Songs suggest that Innocence and Experience are not only inevitable stages in human growth. In the poem of Innocence. The church. imposing constraints and inflicting punishment. but he seems to be fully aware of his condition in an unjust world. He displays. One of the targets of Blake’s critical attacks is the Church. was responsible. seeing it as an instrument of oppression and a source of corruption. Contraries are essential to progression. Blake hated nevertheless the church as an institution. for keeping man at a distance from God. with its “mysteries”*.” Such corresponding poems illustrate the fact that Innocence and Experience are not necessarily to be associated with ages in man’s life. A deeply religious person.” in a country that is “rich and fruitful. Reason and Energy*. This is the God of the world of Experience. The double vision in Blake’s Songs Several other poems in Songs of Experience have a counterpart in Songs of Experience. tyrannical figure.” In the counterpart poem.7. and King” “make up a Heaven of our misery. like that of Hell as a punishment for sin. this sad reality is shadowed by the speaker’s idyllic description of the poor children of London. The former is represented in Blake’s work (the Prophetic Books included) as an “angry” God. in Blake’s view. The two poems entitled Holy Thursday* deal with the hypocrisy of the church. “contrary states of the human soul. The Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience is bitterly ironic about the way in which “God. in fact. was seen by Blake as an instrument by which the church kept men in a state of obedience. a stern. Blake made in fact a distinction between the God of the Old Testament and God of the New Testament. in Songs of Experience. which are thus strengthening their own power. and he is also a child. and His Priest. Love and Hate are necessary to Human existence.English pre-Romantic poetry 6. There is a Chimney Sweeper in Songs of Experience as well. They reveal.” or with a “multitude of lambs. a double awareness of his own innocence and of the hypocritical and cruel world around him.
at the end of the unit. Read the poem carefully and identify the symbols by means of which the two states are contrasted..7. The two “states of the human soul” are here set in contrast. to 6. to regain the vision of Innocence. The speaker’s “journey” to the garden of Love is an attempt to revive the former state.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 9 The poem The Garden of Love – Text 6. and read the poem again more carefully.4. Explain them in no more than 20 lines / 200 words. Compare your answer with the one offered in the section Solutions and suggestions for SAQs.2. If there should be major differences between them.4. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 169 . but he is no longer able to do that.1. revise subchapters 6. except as an act of remembering. in the Reader – tells the story of the loss of Innocence and the entrance in the state of Experience.
The “Graveyard” poets (e. presents the outstanding figure of William Blake. The fascination of James Macpherson with Britain’s Celtic past. Their poetry displays an unprecedented attention to natural detail. One of them is the emergence of a kind of meditative poetry fond of melancholy themes and gloomy settings. imagination and feelings. nature-civilisation. g.English pre-Romantic poetry Summary This unit aims at enlarging your picture of the literary diversity of the 18th century. He condemns the literary habit of idealising the countryside. Oliver Goldsmith emphasises the idyllic happiness of the traditional rural civilisation. by focusing on those tendencies in poetry which prefigure the Romantic Age. as Blake’s “double” poems suggest.3. His Songs of Innocence and of Experience are the testimony of the visionary artist. The first subchapter of this unit deals with two prominent features announcing the Romantic sensibility. the interest in early poetry.4. in its relation with “the two contrary states of the human soul”: Innocence and Experience. The theme of Nature in pre-Romantic poetry is sometimes closely associated with the opposition country-town. the vision of Innocence and the vision of Experience completing each other. The other feature is primitivism. deals with the way in which poets like James Thomson. The transition from the Age of Reason to the Age of Feeling in the 18th century was accompanied by changes in literary taste. 170 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . who sees the opposition nature-civilisation in the light of the myth of Paradise and of the Fall. and seeks to arouse compassion for the life of labour and poverty of the English peasant.. George Crabbe adopts a more realistic and critical view. William Collins and William Cowper approach the theme of Nature. The theme of childhood is examined in several Songs. The last subchapter. Another feature of 18th century pre-Romantic poetry is the perception of rural life in its close connection with Nature. you have been acquainted with two poets who turned their attention to the rural universe. Subchapter 6. The same theme and situation acquires contrary implications. In subchapter 6.. 6. and of Thomas Chatterton with the Middle Ages anticipates the Romantic spirit. The latter may be also seen as complementary aspects of poetic imagination. Edward Young and Thomas Gray) illustrate this new trend. and they acknowledge Nature’s subtle influence on man’s thoughts. in whose work pre-Romantic and Romantic elements meet.2. now threatened by the march of Progress.
Haunted castles. the enclosures meant ruin. and they were forced to find work in towns or to emigrate to America. or Erse. chimney sweeper: in the 18th century.e. The Celtic variety spoken in Ireland and Scotland is called Gaelic. because the life of the poor was not actually reflected in such official records. graveyards.English pre-Romantic poetry Key words ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● ● pre-Romantic nature vs. the changes in agriculture led to the enclosing (i. putting fences round) common land. Gothic novel: a type of fiction that emerged in opposition with the realistic novel in the 18th century. Celtic: related to the Celts. Their father was Zeus. Imagination was free Energy. Daughters of Memory: in Greek mythology. for instance. blank verse: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. passion. while Reason was concerned with setting limits. ruins. which has survived in parts of Scotland. enclosure: in the latter half of the 18th century. which they could climb more easily. and horror. children were often employed for the cleaning of chimneys. as the next subchapter will show. A tendency in 18th century poetry went precisely against this rule. Enlightenment: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. enclosed portions of land were turned into private parks and gardens. Sometimes. the members of an Indo-European people who inhabited Britain before the arrival of the Romans. Gray is sadly ironic. Initially. civilisation rural universe primitivism melancholy sentimentalism humanitarianism childhood imagination Innocence and Experience double vision Glossary • • • annals: yearly record of events. decorum: see subchapter 4. in Unit 4. Ireland and Wales. the term “Gothic” referred to the mediaeval inspiration of such tales of mystery. The Neoclassic principle of decorum did not. for the sake of more profitable farming.2. favour melancholy or morbid themes. 171 • • • • • • • Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . It was a kind of work that contributed to the child mortality rate. goddess of Memory. the nine Muses were indeed the daughters of Mnemosyne. Energy: for Blake. For the small farmers. The first Gothic novel was Horace Walpole’s The Castle of Otranto (1764).2. Celtic refers also to the language spoken by the Celts.
The Four Zoas. the Passions. with His laws formulated as interdictions. and Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 172 . The Book of Urizen. which have a complex structure of symbolism and analogies.1. or of gold or silver paint. A Prophecy. luxury and materialism of urban civilisation. Il Penseroso: see again subchapter 3. Blake associated “mystery” with secrecy and deceit. Holy Thursday: another name for Ascension Day. Among the most important of them are America.3. The custom in London was to bring the poor. in Unit 5. primitive: original. mysteries: the system of sacramental rites affording access to divinely revealed truths. which still preserves elements of the ancient Gaelic culture. It is associated with the reaction against Neoclassicism. Pity. The feeling of nostalgia for a supposed Golden Age and the praise of the “state of Nature” are also features of primitivism.1.) poetic diction: see again the Glossary in Unit 1. etc. when the ascension of Christ is celebrated. ode: see the Glossary in Unit 1. who attacked and sometimes settled in parts of Britain between the 8th and 11th centuries. illuminated (about a piece of writing): decorated by the application of colour. Milton. and he rejected the pretense of the Church to intermediate between man and God. the 39th day after Easter. Jerusalem. especially to the Vikings (or Norsemen). The Book of Los. Primitivism in literature refers to the admiration for and revival of early forms. wild landscapes. See also subchapter 4. Paul’s Cathedral.3. etc. heroic couplet: see again subchapter 1. unfeeling – is intensified by Blake’s allusion to Moses and the Tables of the Law. as well as against the sophistication. belonging to the beginnings. Prophetic Books: the generic name for Blake’s longer (and often obscure) epics. Romanticism: see again Romantic in the Glossary in Unit 1.2. manacles: a pair of iron rings linked by a chain. Los: Blake’s mythological character represents human Imagination in his epics. in Unit 1. Highlands of Scotland: the mountainous area in northern Scotland. Blake distinguished between the prohibitive divinity of the Old Testament. in Unit 3. 2 in Unit 4. and in which he gives an allegorical shape to his religious. sentimental novel: see subchapter 5. were typical settings in Gothic fiction.. orphaned children from the charity schools to St. stony laws: the figurative meaning of “stony” – heartless. philosophical and political convictions. Norse: related to the ancient Scandinavian people. on which the Ten Commandments were written. concerning the typology of the novel in the 18th century. used to secure the hands of a prisoner.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • • secret chambers and corridors. to attend the religious service. Most of Collins’s odes are addressed to personified abstractions (Fear. Neoclassicism: see the Glossary in Unit 1.
whose radicalism strongly influenced the ideology of the French Revolution. He is the precursor of Romanticism by his belief in the primacy of feeling over reason and in the necessity of the return to nature – a principle which he defended in his treatise on education Émile (1762). Send-away assignment no. Jean Jacques: (1712-1778): French writer and philosopher. in grading your paper. SAA no.. Tyger: Blake’s spelling of “tiger. Many topographical poems were praises of particular parks. Pay special attention to the images in these poems and to their symbolic significance. clarity.10. Gallery of personalities • Rousseau. Point out the pre-Romantic themes and attitudes that these poems illustrate. Your commentary should not exceed 50 lines / 500 words. your tutor will take into account: • the closeness of your answer to the formulated requirement (30%).. and 6..11.. and consistence of your ideas (40%) • the accuracy of your grammar (20%) • the accuracy of your spelling (10%) Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 173 . 6. and Holy Thursday (Texts 6. 6.13. The Chimney Sweeper.” usurous: from usury. 6.English pre-Romantic poetry • • • Jesus. • 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.8. • the coherence. meant to win a patron’s favour. 3 The Reader includes some of the “pair poems” from Blake’s Songs of Innocence and of Experience: Nurse’s Song. 6. 3 will count as 10% in your final assessment.12. topographical poem: a poem in which the description of a landscape is accompanied by meditation and historical retrospection.9. Remember that.). Pay special attention to the instructions for the task. He condemned social inequality and regarded the sovereignty of the people as the only legitimate form of political power. gardens or estates. with his law of love. the unlawful practice of lending money at an exorbitant rate of interest.
the mind can see beyond the “dim” surface of things. all intensified. Health and virtue are God’s “gifts” to man. whereas what man makes is inevitably deficient. the vagants’] wanderings. broken branches are a “sad emblem” of the unrewarding existence of the poor in the countryside. b. This heightened understanding is accompanied by “correspondent passions”: love of God. love of nature. “His house was known to all the vagrant train” “The long-remembered beggar was his guest” 2. to enable him to bear more easily the burden of life. nor wished to change his place” 3. Crabbe also gives a reply to those who idealise rural nature: instead of the pleasing “smooth stream” sung in such poetry. SAQ 5 The first line of the fragment contains the implication that everything made by God is perfect. 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. For Cowper. he focuses sharply on the withered tree. By doctrines fashioned to the varying hour” 5. a. in which everything seems to be in decline. In the city. “Unpractised he to fawn. the “feeble.” vitality and cheerfulness of the idyllic village life. There is a general sense of decay and exhaustion in the humble scene in the cottage: the “pale” mother. 174 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . “He chid their [i. and love of man. disease and poverty. Its bare. 2. the place where “health and virtue” can be found abounding. Meditation leads to illumination. Their hard life has no room for illusions about the comforts of old age. Nor e’er had changed. 3.English pre-Romantic poetry Solutions and suggestions for SAQs SAQ 1 1.” “expiring” fire suggest overwork. Crabbe presents a desolate picture. on his soul. 4. the country is therefore morally superior to the city. the “drooping weary” father. d. or seek for power. c SAQ 2 1. “More skilled to raise the wretched than to rise” 4.e. “passing rich with forty pounds a year” SAQ 3 In contrast with Goldsmith’s idealised image of rural happiness and ease. The country is thus a substitute for Eden. but relieved their pain” 6. “Remote from towns he ran his godly race. and on his thoughts. these gifts are “threatened” – the life of pleasure and luxury with which the city tempts man may corrupt his moral fiber. SAQ 4 The personified Philosophic Melancholy exerts “his” influence on man’s imagination.
but are symbols of limitation. The vision of Experience reveals to him the perspective of death: the garden turns out to be a graveyard.” 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. SAQ 8 Examples: 1. T. a child’s birth is no cause for joy. If the child’s play suggests the freedom and pleasure enjoyed in the state of Innocence. incarnated in a child and having the Lamb as a symbol. 5. “My mother groaned. “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. T. At the same time. SAQ 9 The “garden” where he “used to play” – the Eden of childhood – is the symbol of the state of Innocence. 2. This is also suggested by the gloomy figure of the priests. the few elements of the natural setting (stream. In the simple economy of the poem. therefore. which he has lost. and is itself one more care in the family. 2. The interdiction “Thou shall not” on the door of the chapel suggests repression and limitation. T. gentle and humble like the lamb itself. Experience brings about inhibition and constraint. in the state of Experience. T. the child identifies himself and the lamb with Jesus. the lamb is God’s gift to the child: it is a “delight” to look at and to touch. meadow. against which man. “walking their rounds” like soldiers guarding a Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 175 . in Blake’s vision. 3.English pre-Romantic poetry SAQ 6 1. The shut gates of the chapel symbolise the estrangement of man from God. F SAQ 7 The child cannot imagine the Creator of the lovely and tender creature otherwise than “meek and mild. vales) emphasise the close connection between Innocence and Nature. confinement and oppressive authority. In the second stanza. the God of Love. and the beauty of the “sweet flowers” – symbols of life – is replaced by the grim image of the tombstones.” that is. it controls man’s relationship with Divinity. F. Nature and Divinity form a harmonious whole. Man. It is the intuition of Innocence that dictates the confident answer to the child: the Creator is Jesus. F. The mother “groans” with the pains of delivery. In a vision of Innocence. my father wept” – In the vision of Experience. 7. and. His swaddling bands and his father’s arms do not suggest care and protection. 6. disappointments and frustrations that await man in the world of Experience. The church as an institution belongs to the world of Experience. The pain and sorrow accompanying birth are symbolic anticipations of the suffering. no longer able – or permitted – to relate to God “naturally” and directly. struggles in vain. and his “tender voice” fills all nature with joy. being thus a source of oppression. and the father weeps perhaps because his new baby comes into a world of trouble and cares. 4. the “Lamb of God.
692-699) 2... vol.).5 (“From Blake to Byron”). 3 (“The Restoration to 1800”). and conditioning man’s access to the mystery of Divinity on the suppression of his desire. Ford. A Critical History of English Literature. 671-684. Penguin Books Ltd. 84-94) 3.. London: Secker and Warburg Ltd. vol.English pre-Romantic poetry restricted area. 1991 (pp. Ford. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. Daiches. Further reading 1. 652-658. 1991 (pp. Boris (ed. The New Pelican Guide to English Literature. David. 6987) 176 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .). vol. 1969 (pp.4 (“From Dryden to Johnson”). Penguin Books Ltd. Boris (ed.
Reader READER in Seventeenth and Eighteenth Century British Literature Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 177 .
nu ştiu – mi-am pierdut toată voioşia. ce înseamnă această chintesenţă a ţărânii? Omul nu mă desfată (…). cât de asemenea unui zeu: frumuseţea lumii. in apprehension* how like a god!! The beauty of the world! The paragon* of animals! And yet. Hamlet (Act II. this brave* overhanging* firmament*. and indeed it goes so heavily with my disposition that this goodly* frame*. the sky) brave minunat. how express and admirable! In action how like an angel. this most excellent canopy*. văzduhul. look you. încât acest frumos tărâm. forewent. in moving. ce fără de număr îi sunt facultăţile.1. m-am lăsat de toate obişnuitele exerciţii. cât de nobilă îi este inteligenţa. 178 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . sufletul îmi este atât de apăsat. Ce minunată lucrare e omul. alcătuirile şi mişcările. foregone* all custom of exercises. it appears no other thing to me but a foul* and pestilent congregation of vapours. îmi pare un promontoriu sterp. cât de asemenea unui înger în puterea sa de înţelegere. What a piece of work is man! How noble in Reason! How infinite in faculty! In form. această boltă falnică împodobită cu scântei de aur. cât de chibzuit şi de admirabil e în faptele sale. the air. what is this quintessence of dust? Man delights me not (…). foregone: to give up goodly pleasant or satisfying in appearance frame form. strălucitor overhanging hanging over firmament (archaic. acest preaminunat baldachin.g. seems to me a sterile promontory. – but wherefore* I know not. for what reason mirth happiness and laughter foregone to forego. Scene II) Hamlet: (…) I have of late*. pildă a vieţuitoarelor.excelent. this majestical roof fretted* with golden fire. acest mândru firmament ce senalţă deasupra noastră. of late recently wherefore why. William Shakespeare.Reader UNIT 2 THE LATE RENAISSANCE AND THE BAROQUE TEXT 2. ability to understand paragon a model of excellence Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi and Dan Duţescu) Hamlet: În ultima vreme – de ce. vedeţi. the earth. şi. cum să spun. pentru mine. literary) the sky fretted decorated foul very bad or unpleasant apprehension understanding. to me. – lost all my mirth*. într-adevăr. şi totuşi. nu-mi pare alta decât un vălmăşag odios şi infect de miasme. pământul. shape canopy a large or wide covering (e.
ţanţoş. The death of each day’s life. semeţ. Creeps* in this petty* pace from day to day. live or stay healthy feast ospăţ Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Mi s-a părut c-aud un glas strigând: “Nu mai dormi! Macbeth ucide somnul” Nevinovatul somn. and tomorrow. a se furişa) petty inessential. Balm of hurt minds.2. brief* candle*! Life’s but a walking shadow. moartea vieţii fiecărei zile. iar la ospăţul vieţii Cel mai de seamă fel. William Shakespeare. Sleep that knits up* the ravelled* sleeve* of care. And all our yesterdays have lighted fools The way to dusty death.Reader TEXT 2. trivial. cu un aer important to fret to be distressed. William Shakespeare. a poor player. a înnoda ravelled destrămat. to creep. scene V) Macbeth: Tomorrow. Chief* nourisher* in life’s feast* (…). sore* labour’s bath. Macbeth (Act II. neînsemnat) out (interjection) termină. El. and tomorrow. şi-a doua mană A marii firi. great nature’s second course*. principal nourisher that which gives (someone) what is needed to grow.” the innocent sleep. out. TEXT 2. To the last syllable of recorded time. That struts* and frets* his hour upon the stage. chinuitor) course fel de mâncare chief most important. methought past tense from methinks (archaic): it seems to me to knit up a împleti. desfăcut sleeve mânecă sore causing grief or sorrow (dureros. Macbeth (Act V. trifling (mărunt. crept to move quiety and slowly (a se târî. full of sound* and fury. Out*. to be in a state of anxiety and agitation (a se agita.3. scalda grelei trude şi balsamul Durerii sufleteşti. desfirat. scene II) Macbeth: Methought* I heard a voice cry “Sleep no more! Macbeth does murder sleep. isprăveşte (stinge-te) brief short in duration candle lumânare to strut a umbla/păşi/călca mândru. Signifying nothing. a se frământa) sound zgomot Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 179 . cel ce desface Fuiorul încâlcit al grijii – somnul: El. And then is heard no more. it is a tale Told by an idiot.
TEXT 2. Which any print* of goodness will not take. cruel. tot mereu. Din vorbe-alcătuită şi din zbucium Şi nensemnând nimic. Spre cel din urmă semn din cartea vremii. and my profit on it Is I know how to curse: the red plague rid you. I endowed thy purposes With words that made them known: but thy vile* race*. mârşav. lumânare de o clipă! Ni-e viaţa doar o umbră călătoare. redus. ce-n ceasul lui pe scenă Se grozăveşte şi se tot frământă Şi-n urmă nu mai este auzit. netrebnic. Cu pas mărunt se-alungă zi de zi. a suporta therefore as a result. ticălos) race neam. taught thee each hour One thing or other: when thou didst not*. Know thine* own meaning. stupid (necioplit. tagmă thou didst learn you did learn to abide a răbda. had that in it which good natures Could not abide* to be with. Şi fiecare “ieri” a luminat Nebunilor pe-al morţii drum de colb. a bâigui) brutish coarse. Caliban: You taught me language. Though thou didst learn*. Te stinge. The Tempest (Act I. savage. therefore* wast thou* Deservedly* confined* into this rock Who hadst deserved more than a prison. but wouldst* gabble* like A thing most brutish*.4. for that reason wast thou were you deservedly rightly learning teaching vile 180 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . E o poveste spusă de-un nătâng. Un biet actor. Being capable of all ill! I pitied thee*. 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. Took pains to make thee speak. mărginit) shameful and evil. William Shakespeare. sălbatic. abject. nasty (josnic. scene II) Prospero: Abhorred* slave.Reader Romanian translation (by Ion Vinea) Macbeth: Dar mâine şi iar mâine.
Te-am învăţat de toate. indeed pageant splendid public show or ceremony faded to fade: to lose brightness. The Tempest (Act IV. consistency. ţi-am arătat Al vorbei meşteşug. fiară. These our actors. nepricepând Nici tu ce bălmăjeşti. duhuri. scene I) Prospero: Our revels* are now ended. rack a floating cloud Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Serbarea noastră s-a sfârşit. Te-am surghiunit aici. TEXT 2. Actorii Ţi-am spus. turnuri Cu turlele în nori. As I foretold* you. a se dizolva baseless unfounded (fără bază. The solemn temples. când tu. shall dissolve And. Plămadă suntem precum cea din care Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 181 . avea ceva Ce bunul simţ nu rabdă. dar proasta-ţi fire. au fost. and our little life Is rounded with a sleep. alcătuire) cloud-capped towers towers whose tops are capped (covered) by clouds yea (archaic. se vor topi Şi. colour. Leave not a rack* behind. William Shakespeare. În stare de orice. like this insubstantial pageant* faded*. all which it inherit. etc.5. revels festivitate teatrală pentru curteni foretold to foretell. structure. were all spirits and Are melted* into air. Deşi-ai fost dăscălit.Reader Romanian translation (by Leon Leviţchi) Prospero: Slugoi scârbavnic. duşi. Şi întocmai Ca funigeii viziunii. chiar pământul. a spune dinainte melted to melt: a se topi. temelie) fabric building. Biserici maiestoase. framework (clădire. We are such stuff As dreams are made on. the great globe itself. like the baseless* fabric* of this vision. Cu tot ce-a moştenit. dar. Nici spulber n-au să lase-n urma lor. toţi. când meritai Mai mult decât o temniţă. Scoteai doar mugete. M-am străduit sa te deprind cu graiul. Yea*. pe drept. afară doar De-un dram de bunătate! Mi-a fost milă. the gorgeous palaces. palate mândre. foretold: a anunţa. The cloud-capped towers*. ca-nchipuită scena-aceasta. literary) truly. cu singurul folos Că ştiu acum să-njur – dea ciuma-n tine Şi-n limba ce m-ai învăţat. şi-n văzduh S-au destrămat cu toţii. Caliban: M-ai învăţat vorbi. into thin air: And.
and hands to miss. Though greater far. and hearkens* after it. Yet when the other far doth roam*. Inter-assured of the mind*. 182 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . If they be two. Like the other foot. Dull* sublunary* lovers’ love (Whose soul is sense*) cannot admit Absence. they are two so As stiff* twin* compasses are two. Though I must go. Whilst* some of their sad friends do say. şi scurta viaţă Împrejmuită ni-e de somn. if the other do. no: So let us melt*.Reader Făcute-s visele. to go. But we by a love so much refined.6. It leans*. But trepidation of the spheres. and some say. but doth. And whisper* to their souls. Thy* soul the fixed foot. Men reckon* what it did and meant. which are one. Care less eyes. obliquely run. as that comes home. nor sigh-tempests* move. No tear-floods. where I begun. A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning As virtuous men pass mildly* away*. Moving of the earth* brings harms and fears. who must. John Donne. That our selves know not what it is. The breath goes now. And makes me end. Like gold to aery thinness beat. And grows erect*. And though it in centre sit. makes no show To move. lips. is innocent. endure* not yet A breach*. but an expansion. because it doth* remove* Those things which elemented* it. Our two souls therefore. Thy firmness makes my circle just*. ‘Twere* profanation of our joys To tell the laity* our love. and make no noise. TEXT 2. Such wilt* thou* be to me.
Nor ever chaste. fig. That I may* rise. or break that knot again.7. shine. apply your force due cuvenit. a înfrânge bend your force concentrate. Divorce me. Yet dearly I love you. leant a se apleca. But am betrothed* unto your enemy. for. breathe. untie*. a ajunge în poziţie verticală wilt will thou you just corect. never shall be free. and stand. sigh-tempests şuvoaie/potop de lacrimi. to struggle to no end vainly. a fi atent la (here: to seek to join. a se înclina to hearken a asculta. exact Text 2. a fi supus (the speaker urges his beloved to face the separation calmly and quietly) tear-floods. 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. burn. datorat to labour to work hard.: inflexibil. gladly betrothed unto logodit cu to untie a dezlega. to break. o’erthrow me*. to undergo breach break. to long for) to grow erect a se îndrepta. a lua cu sila. you As yet* but knock. ferm. overthrown: a nimici. I. 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. to another due*. softly to whisper a şopti whilst while to melt a-şi înmuia firea. and proves weak or untrue*. me should defend.Reader pass away to die mildly gently. therefore subject to change whose soul is sense in which physical presence is essential doth does to remove to take away. and would be loved fain*. and bend Your force*. a subjuga to ravish a răpi. 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. Labour* to admit you. mirean) moving of the earth earthquake to reckon a gândi. Take me to you. John Donne. a silui Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 183 . to no end*. and seek to mend. except you ravish* me. a elibera to enthrall a supune. But is captived. rupture stiff rigid. like an usurped town. blow. a rătăci to lean. Reason your viceroy* in me. 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. precis. hotărât twin îngemănat thy your to roam a hoinări. imprison me. a înrobi. for I Except your enthrall* me. and make me new. overthrew. but oh. a presupune dull not intense sublunary: beneath the moon. three-personed God*. Batter My Heart Batter* my heart.
and on thy* forehead gaze. like amorous birds of prey. But none. you deserve this state*. Now let us sport* while we may. I would Love you ten years before the Flood*. Thus. But at my back I always hear Time’s winged* chariot* hurrying near. And while thy willing* soul transpires At every pore with instant fires*. and think which way To talk. I think. And into ashes all my lust*: The grave*’s a fine and private place. I by the tide Of Humber* would complain. For. An hundred years should go to praise Thine* eyes. refuse Till the conversion of the Jews*. My vegetable* love should grow Vaster than empires and more slow. and pass our long love’s day. Rather at once our devour Than languish* in his slow-chapt power*. Two hundred to adore each breast.8.Reader TEXT 2. Nor. Thou* by the Indian Ganges’ side Shouldst* rubies* find. And tear* our pleasure with rough strife* Thorough* the iron gates of life. Now therefore. And yonder* all before us lie Deserts of vast eternity. while the youthful* hue* Sits on thy skin like morning dew*. in thy marble vault*. We would sit down. and time. Andrew Marvell. do there embrace. 184 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Let us roll all our strength and all Our sweetness up into one ball. Nor would I love at lower rate. This coyness*. yet we will make him run. Lady. And now. But thirty thousand to the rest. Thy beauty shall no more be found. shall sound My echoing song. An age at least to every part. if you please. And your quaint* honor turn to dust. And the last age should show your heart. To His Coy Mistress Had we but* world enough. And you should. then worms shall try That long-preserved virginity. were no crime. though we cannot make our sun Stand still. Lady.
thy your state ceremonial treatment winged having wings. in spite of her coyness. which. fig. nuanţă.Reader had we but… if only we had coyness timiditate. a se veseli to languish a se ofili. groapă youthful de tinereţe. sfială. inclined instant fires the flush in her face. tentă dew rouă willing favourably disposed. inappropriate (nefiresc) ashes cenuşă lust strong sexual desire (dorinţă. tineresc hue culoare.: swift. a se plictisi slow-chapt power the power of its slowly devouring jaws to tear (tore. 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. torn) a smulge. a lua cu de-a sila strife violent struggle thorough through Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 185 . peculiar. a lâncezi. indicates her “willing soul” to sport a petrece. fast chariot ceremonial carriage (car) yonder (poetic) over there vault burial chamber (cavou) quaint odd. patimă) grave mormânt.
however mean* or high. opportune happy fortunate. insignificant ever eternity task-master the one who imposes tasks. All is. speed. Stolen on his wing my three and twentieth year*! My hasting days fly on with full career*. if I have grace to use it so. light denied*?” I fondly* ask. It shall be still* in strictest measure even To that same lot*. As ever* in my great task-master's* eye. and the will of heaven. returning. though my soul more bent* To serve therewith* my maker. a strict overseer TEXT 3. obscure. Perhaps my semblance* might deceive* the truth. they serve him best. destiny mean humble. John Milton. Ere* half my days. Yet be it less or more.1. lucky endueth endues. who best Bear his mild yoke*. rush bud mugur. to endue: a înzestra (Inward ripeness. Sonnet XVII When I consider how my light* is spent*. vârstă adultă ripeness maturitate doth does timely occuring atjust the right moment. which endues some more timely-happy spirits.2. Toward which time leads me. soon replies: “God doth not need Either man's work or his own gifts. Sonnet VII How soon hath* time. to prevent That murmur*. the subtle* thief of youth. 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. in this dark world and wide. That some more timely*-happy* spirits endueth*.e to a lesser extent) still always lot fortune. or soon or slow. And that one talent* which is death to hide Lodged with me useless*. boboc showeth shows (My late spring shows no bud or blossom) semblance outward appearance to deceive to mislead (a înşela) manhood bărbăţie. 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. '”Doth God exact* day-labour. lest he. appears [in me] much less – i. And inward ripeness* doth* much less appear. chide*. But my late spring no bud* or blossom showeth*.” 186 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural .Reader UNIT 3 THE WORKS OF JOHN MILTON TEXT 3. That I to manhood* am arrived so near. and present My true account. John Milton. but Patience.
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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by venturing* higher than my lot. that Man may not become As they. or this tree Impart against his will. I question it. then. What can your knowledge hurt him. a se încumeta forbid forbidden low humble. din el/ea (eat from the Tree of Knowledge) dim having weak or indistinct vision participating sharing godlike divine to proceed (from) to originate. and that advantage use On our belief. was this forbid*? Why but to awe? Why but to keep ye low* and ignorant. by the Threatener? look on me.8. do not believe Those rigid threats of death. that all from them proceeds*. and freely taste. 4. Shall that be shut to Man which to the beast Is open? 2. Knowing both good and evil. shall perfectly be then Opened and cleared. 3. Why. as they know. ye you (pl.Reader TEXT 3. yet both live And life more perfect have attained than Fate Meant me. reach* then. that seem so clear Yet are but dim*. for this fair* Earth I see. Me who have touched and tasted. if all be his? Or is it envy? and can envy dwell In heavenly breasts? These. your eyes. How should ye? by the fruit? it gives you life To knowledge. participating* godlike* food? The Gods are first. Warmed by the Sun. and ye shall be like Gods. modest thereof din ace(a)sta. to emerge fair beautiful to import a însemna to reach a întinde mâna. And what are Gods. Queen of the Universe.) venturing to venture: a îndrăzni. Goddess humane. Them nothing. ye* shall not die. Paradise Lost (Book IX) 1. John Milton. His worshippers? He knows that. producing every kind. a apuca Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 191 . in the day Ye eat thereof*. these and many more Causes import* your need of this fair fruit.
but wiped them soon. hand in hand. sălaş flaming brand sabia de foc/flăcări thronged (with dreadful faces) plină (de chipuri de temut) fiery în flăcări. The world was all before them. looking back. where to choose Their place of rest. and Providence their guide. They. literary): to look at so late până nu demult seat locaş. Through Eden took their solitary way.9. John Milton. the gate With dreadful faces thronged* and fiery* arms: Some natural* tears they dropped. with wandering steps and slow. all the eastern side beheld* Of Paradise. beheld to behold. beheld (archaic. Waved over by that flaming brand*. care arde natural firesc 192 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Paradise Lost (Book XII) They.Reader TEXT 3. so late* their happy seat*.
to be sole* empress of my tea table. let us be as strange as if we had been married a great while*. Let us never visit together. and choose conversation with regard only to my own taste. Mirabell: Have you any more conditions to offer? Hitherto* your demands are pretty reasonable. and ashamed of one another ever after. and then never be seen there together again. but let us be very strange* and well bred*. because they are your acquaintance. without giving a reason.Reader UNIT 4 THE RESTORATION AND THE AUGUSTAN AGE TEXT 4. the only oneto presume to dare (a îndrăzni) to ask leave to ask permission Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 193 . To have my closet* inviolate*. as if we were proud of one another the first week. dine in my dressing room when I’m out of humour*. and as well bred as if we were not married at all. reserved well-bred binecrescut. 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. wherever I am. to write and receive letters. And lastly. The Way of the World Millamant: (…) Good Mirabell. (…) fond affectionate. to have no obligation upon me to converse with wits* that I don’t like. to provoke eyes and whispers*. Come to dinner when I please. or to be intimate with fools. don’t let us be familiar or fond*. because they may be your relations*. like my Lady Faddler and Sir Francis. abătut closet a small private room inviolate in which nobody intrudes sole only. manierat. you shall always knock at the door before you come in. to wear what I please. Millamant: Trifles* – as liberty to pay and receive visits* to and from whom I please. William Congreve. politicos a great while a long time hitherto until this time. which you must never presume* to approach without first asking leave*. nor go to a play together. so far trifle fleac. nor go to Hyde Park together the first Sunday in a new chariot*. without interrogatories or wry faces* on your part. tender folks people chariot trăsură to provoke eyes and whispers to attract attention and provoke gossip (bârfă) strange distant. nor kiss before folks*.1.
fantezist awhile for a short period satiety the state of being too much filled or satisfied peculiarity particularitate but only transient temporary. and the mind can only repose on the stability of truth.2. ticălos. nemernic opprobrious insulting betwixt between slovenly neglijent butchering căsăpire. a furniza 194 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a livra. Samuel Johnson. The Preface to Shakespeare Nothing can please many. and the fineness* of a stroke* that separates the head from the body. transitory (trecător) progeny urmaşi. which can operate but* upon small numbers. successfully irregular neuniform. and that wittily*! But how hard to make a man appear a fool. escroc.Reader TEXT 4. the poet that holds up to his readers a faithful mirror of manners and of life. John Dryden. unpractised by the rest of the world. A Discourse Concerning the Original and Progress of Satire How easy is it to call rogue* and villain*. cap sec knave escroc. above all writers. the poet of nature. by the peculiarities* of studies or professions. rogue pungaş. dobitoc. The irregular* combinations of fanciful* invention may delight awhile* by that novelty of which the common satiety* of life sends us all in quest. variabil fanciful capricios. pungaş. In the writings of other poets a character is too often an individual: in those of Shakespeare it is commonly a species. 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. manners moravuri nearly faithfully. secătură. perfecţiune stroke lovitură TEXT 4. lichea wittily in a witty manner (cu mult spirit) blockhead nătâng. potlogar villain nemernic. Shakespeare is. such as the world will always supply* and observation will always find. and therefore few only can judge how nearly* they are copied. Particular manners* may be known to few. or a knave* without using any of those opprobrious* terms! (…) There is (…) a vast difference betwixt* the slovenly* butchering* of a man. at least above all modern writers. descendenţi to supply a oferi. His characters are not modified by the customs of particular places. a blockhead*. and please long. or by the accidents of transient* fashions or temporary opinions: they are the genuine progeny* of common humanity. but the pleasures of sudden wonder are soon exhausted. and leaves it standing in its place.3. but just representations of general nature. măcelărire fineness eleganţă.
as the more acute wits* of Europe have done. abstractions. love. The learning of this people is very defective. poetry. where an enemy or some rival nation were not in case. he protested* that although few things delighted him so much as new discoveries in art or in nature. And as to ideas. when I happened to say there were several thousand books among us written upon the art of government. wherein* they must be allowed to excel. and esteem. of strong parts. He confined* the knowledge of governing within very narrow bounds*: to common sense and reason. He was amazed how so impotent and grovelling* an insect as I (these were his expressions) could entertain* such inhuman ideas. yet he would rather lose half his kingdom than be privy* to such a secret (…). and transcendentals*. But the last of these is wholly applied to what may be useful in life. they not having hitherto reduced politics into a science. either in a prince or a minister. chapter VII) The King was struck with horror* at the description I had given of those terrible engines* and the proposal I had made. and the fortunes of his people. in a discourse one day with the King. so that among us would be little esteemed. to justice and lenity*. A strange effect of narrow principles and short views*! that a prince possessed of every quality which procures veneration. 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. the liberties. great wisdom. with some other obvious topics* which are not worth considering. and almost adored by his subjects. 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. He could not tell what I meant by secrets of state. history. Jonathan Swift. consisting only in morality. let slip* an opportunity put into his hands that would have made him absolute master of the lives.Reader TEXT 4. to the improvement of agriculture and all mechanical arts*. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 195 . unnecessary scruple.4. I could never drive* the least conception into their heads. For I remember very well. (…) I take* this defect among them to have risen from their ignorance. and profound learning. it gave him (directly contrary to my intention) a very mean opinion* of our understandings. Gulliver’s Travels (Book II. to the speedy* determination* of civil and criminal causes. entities. He professed both to abominate* and despise all mystery*. refinement and intrigue. endued* with admirable talents for government. and mathematics. whereof* in Europe we can have no conception. should from a nice*.
as I had described them. they will instead of eating peaceably. the shortness of my claws*. so. încheiere (a unei cauze juridice) topic temă.g. and our actions. and therefore* to protect himself. our manners. He said the Yahoos were known to hate one another more than they did any different species of animals. my master confessed he could find little or no resemblance between the Yahoos of that country and those in ours. a încredinţa to be privy to a fi făcut părtaş la. I suppose acute wits spirite luminate (acute: pătrunzător. and carry them away. and drive the female Yahoos to his kennel. This favorite is hated by the whole herd. government. and hide them by heaps* in their kennels*. driven) an idea into one’s head a băga în cap. he found as near a resemblance in the disposition* of our minds. but still looking round with great caution. there are certain shining stones of several colors. VII) He observed that I agreed* in every feature of my body with other Yahoos. greu de mulţumit) whereof of which to let slip (an opportunity) a lăsa să-i scape. from the representation I had given him of our lives. but not in themselves. a asigura. 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. For. than any of the rest. they will dig with their claws for whole days to get them out. a face să priceapă TEXT 4. and some other particulars* where Nature had no part*. speed. manufactures*. un secret) short views concepţii înguste endued înzestrat nice fastidious. and the like. except where it was to my real disadvantage in point of* strength. perspicace) mean opinion părere nefavorabilă to abominate to detest. as in fear or humility (a se târî) to entertain (an idea) a nutri (o idee) to protest a declara. to dislike intensely mystery urzeli tainice to confine to limit. to restrict bound limit. whereof the Yahoos are violently fond*.Reader struck with horror cuprins de groază engines maşini (piese de artilerie) grovelling to grovel: to crawl. excessively particular about details (pretenţios. a i se încredinţa (e. fall together by ears*. in some fields of his country. a scăpa din mână (o ocazie) I take I think. for fear their comrades should find out their treasure. Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV. and mischievous* in disposition. as sometimes happens. a fi iniţiat în. for which he was known and then rewarded with a piece of ass’s flesh*. and the reason usually assigned* was the odiousness* of their own shapes. whose employment was to lick* his masters feet and posteriors. (…) That. (…) But he now found he had been mistaken. 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. and when part of these stones are fixed in the earth. and activity.5. if (said he) you throw among five Yahoos as much food as would be sufficient for fifty. keeps always near the 196 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . For he only meant to observe what parity* there was in our natures. without delay determination rezolvare. each single one impatient* to have all to itself. That this leader had usually a favorite as like himself as he could get. which all could see in the rest. boundary (hotar) lenity tolerance (îngăduinţă) speedy quick. and that the dissensions of those brutes in his country were owing to the same cause with ours. Ch. Jonathan Swift. arts. (…) As to learning.
person of his leader. (…) But how far this might be applicable to our courts and favorites, and ministers of state, my master said I could best determine. (…) My master likewise* mentioned another quality, which his servants had discovered in several Yahoos, and to him was wholly unaccountable*. He said, a fancy* would sometimes take a Yahoo, to retire into a corner, to lie down and howl*, and groan*, and spurn* away all that came near him, although he were young and fat, and wanted* neither food nor water; nor did the servants imagine what could possibly ail* him. And the only remedy they found was to set* him to hard work*, after which he would infallibly* come to himself*. To this I was silent out of partiality* to my own kind*; yet here I could plainly discover the true seeds* of spleen*, which only seizes on* the lazy, the luxurious, and the rich (…). His Honor had farther observed, that a female Yahoo would often stand behind a bank* or a bush*, to gaze* on the young males passing by, and then appear, and hide, using many antic* gestures and grimaces; at which time it was observed, that she had a most offensive* smell; and when any of the males advanced, would slowly retire, looking back, and with a counterfeit* show of fear, run off into some convenient place where she knew the male would follow her. At other times, if a female stranger came along them, three or four of her own sex would get about her, and stare* and chatter*, and grin*, and smell her all over; and then turn off with gestures that seemed to express contempt and disdain.
I agreed I corresponded in point of în ceea ce priveşte claws gheare particulars details no part no role, no contribution near close disposition predispoziţie, înclinare to assign (a reason) to give, to attribute (a reason) odiousness hidoşenie they will fall together by ears se vor lua la bătaie impatient zorit, grăbit whereof of which to be fond of a fi amator, a-i plăcea mult by heaps în grămezi kennel culcuş, vizuină manufacture meşteşuguri parity corespondenţă, asemănare, analogie herd cireadă ruling dominant, conducător stag cerb park parc cinegetic mischievous răutăcios, rău intenţionat, pus pe rele to lick a linge ass’s flesh carne de măgar therefore that is why likewise also unaccountable inexplicable a fancy would sometimes take a Yahoo din când în când i se năzare câte unui Yahoo to howl a urla to groan a geme to spurn (away) a îndepărta, a refuza, a alunga to want a duce lipsă de to ail a durea, a deranja to set (somebody) to work a pune la muncă infallibly negreşit he would come to himself îşi revenea, îşi venea în fire partiality părtinire, slăbiciune, înclinaţie my own kind cei de-un neam cu mine seeds seminţe (fig.: izvor, cauză) spleen ipohondrie, melancolie seizes on se abate asupra, îi cuprinde pe bank movilă bush tufiş to gaze to look long and fixedly antic grotesque offensive unpleasant, disgusting counterfeit simulated; a counterfeit show of fear: prefăcânduse că îi este teamă to stare a se holba to chatter a flecări to grin a rânji
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TEXT 4.6. Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels (Book IV, chapter VIII)
As these noble Houyhnhnms are endowed by Nature with a general disposition to all virtues, and have no conceptions or ideas of what is evil in a rational creature; so their grand* maxim is to cultivate reason, and to be wholly governed by it. (…) Friendship and benevolence are the two principal virtues among the Houyhnhnms; and these not confined to particular objects, but universal to the whole race. For a stranger from the remotest* part is equally treated with the nearest neighbour, and wherever he goes, looks upon himself* as at home. They preserve decency and civility* in the highest degrees, but are altogether ignorant of ceremony*. They have no fondness* for their colts or foals*; but the care they take in educating them proceeds* entirely from the dictates of reason. And I observed my master to show the same affection to his neighbour’s issue* that he had for his own. They will have that* Nature teaches them to love the whole species, and it is reason only that makes a distinction of persons, where there is a superior degree of virtue. When the matron* Houyhnhnms have produced one of each sex, they no longer accompany* with their consorts, except they lose one of their issue by some casualty*, which very seldom* happens; but in such a case they meet again; or when the like accident* befalls* a person whose wife is past bearing*, some other couple bestows* on him one of their own colts, and then go together* a second time, until the mother be pregnant*. This caution* is necessary to prevent the country from being overburdened with numbers*. But the race of inferior Houyhnhnms bred up to be servants is not so strictly limited upon this article*; these are allowed to produce* three of each sex, to be domestics* in the noble families. Courtship, love, presents*, jointures*, settlements*, have no place in their thoughts, or terms whereby* to express them in their language. The young couple meet and are joined, merely because it is the determination* of their parents and friends; it is what they see done every day; and they look upon it as one of necessary actions in a reasonable being. But the violation* of marriage, or any other unchastity* was never heard of; and the married pair pass their lives with the same friendship and mutual benevolence that they bear to all others of the same species who come in their way, without jealousy, fondness, quarreling*, or discontent*. Temperance*, industry*, exercise*, and cleanliness* are the lessons equally enjoined* to the young ones of both sexes; and my master thought it monstrous in us to give the females a different kind of education from the males, except in some articles of domestic management (…).
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grand principal, capital, supreme remote distant, far away looks upon himself considers himself civility amabilitate, curtenie, politeţe, bună creştere ceremony protocol, etichetă fondness duioşie, afecţiune, dragoste colt, foal mânz to proceed (from) to come from, to originate in (a izvorî) issue odrasle, progenituri, urmaşi they will have that they say that matron mamă de familie to acompany (with) a se împreuna casualty accident, nenorocire, năpastă seldom rarely the like accident o năpastă de felul acesta to befall (befell, befallen) a se abate asupra is past bearing nu mai poate zămisli to bestow to give, to offer they go together se împreunează pregnant grea, însărcinată caution măsură de prevedere overburdened with numbers overpopulated upon this article în această privinţă, la acest capitol to produce a zămisli domestic servitor present dar, cadou jointure averea cuvenită soţiei după moartea soţului settlement contract whereby by which determination decision violation necinstire unchastity infidelitate quarreling ceartă discontent nemulţumire temperance cumpătare industry hărnicie exercise exerciţii fizice cleanliness curăţenie enjoined imposed, prescribed
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UNIT 5 THE AGE OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT: THE RISE OF THE NOVEL
TEXT 5.1. Daniel Defoe, Robinson Crusoe
It was now that I began sensibly* to feel how much more happy this life I now led was, with all its miserable circumstances, than the wicked*, cursed*, abominable* life I led all the past part of my days. And now I changed both my sorrows and my joys; my very desires altered*, my affections changed their gusts*, and my delights were perfectly new from what they were at my first coming, or indeed for the two years past. Before, as I walked about, either on my hunting or for viewing the country, the anguish* of my soul at my condition would break out* upon me on a sudden*, and my very heart would die within me to think of the woods, the mountains, the deserts I was in, and how I was a prisoner locked up with the eternal bars* and bolts* of the ocean, in an uninhabited wilderness, without redemption*. In the midst* of the greatest composures* of my mind, this would break out upon me like a storm, and make me wring* my hands like a child. (…). But now I began to exercise myself with new thoughts. I daily read the Word of God, and applied all the comforts* of it to my present state. One morning, being very sad, I opened the Bible upon these words: “I will never, never leave thee*, nor forsake* thee.” Immediately it occurred* to me that these words were to me. Why else* should they be directed in such a manner, just at the moment when I was mourning over my condition as one forsaken of* God and Man? (…) From this moment I began to conclude in my mind that it was possible for me to be more happy in this forsaken, solitary condition than it was probable I should have ever been I any other particular state in the world; and with this thought I was going to give thanks to God for bringing me to this place.
sensibly în mod apreciabil, destul de mult wicked păcătos cursed nelegiuit, ticălos abominable odios to alter to change gust răbufnire, explozie, izbucnire anguish pain, misery, agony to break out a se dezlănţui, a izbucni on a sudden suddenly, abruptly bars gratii, zăbrele bolt zăvor redemption mântuire, izbăvire, salvare midst middle composure linişte, calm, cumpăt, stăpânire de sine to wring (wrung) a frânge; to wring one’s hands: a-şi frânge mâinile de durere comfort mângâiere, consolare, încurajare thee you to forsake (forsook, forsaken) to abandon to occur (to someone) a-i veni în minte, a-i trece prin gând why else? altfel de ce? forsaken of forsaken by
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dug a săpa to temper a amesteca. a prelucra above more than earthen de lut. (…) Though I miscarried* so much in my design* for large pots*. This set me to studying how to order* my fire. to temper* it. and observed that they did not crack at all*.2. When I saw them clear red. which it did admirably well. or glazing* them with lead*. vas to miscarry a da greş design intenţie pot vas. fallen) in: a se prăbuşi. I had no notion of a kiln*. when I went to put it out* after I had done with it. It happened after some time. or rather laugh at me. I found a broken piece of one of my earthenware vessels* in the fire burned as hard as a stone. (fell. and how many fell in pieces with only removing* as well before as after they were dried. I was agreeably surprised to see it. how many cracked* by the over-violent heat of the sun. though I had some lead to do it with. to dig* it. after having laboured hard to find the clay.Reader TEXT 5. but I placed three large pipkins and two or three pots in a pile. one upon another. Robinson Crusoe It would make the reader pity* me. being set out too hastily*. Daniel Defoe. and any things my hand turned to*. pitchers*. making a pretty large fire for cooking my meat. and how many fell out*. 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. de pământ jar oală. flat dishes*. how many of them fell in*. yet I made several smaller things with better success – such as little round pots. which was to get an earthen pot to hold what was liquid. what odd. misshapen*. anevoios. in a word how. and bear* the fire. a cădea fell out to fall. so as to make it burn me some pots. But all this would not answer my end*. I let them stand in that heat about five or six hours(…). and red as a tile*. a frământa. such as the potters* burn in. 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 (…). ugly things I made. to tell how many awkward* ways I took to raise this paste*. 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. with a great heap of embers* under them. and the heat of the sun baked* them strangely hard*. I could not make above* two large earthen* ugly things – I cannot call them jars* – in about two months’ labour. oală Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 201 . a se desprinde clay lut. (fell. and. 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*. dificil paste cocă misshapen diform fell in to fall. and placed my firewood* all round it. and pipkins*. the clay* not being stiff* enough to bear its own weight*.. fallen) out: a se desface. 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. to bring it home and work it. and said to myself that certainly they might be made to burn whole if they would burn broken. which none of these could do. to pity a căina awkward incomod.
born) a rezista. I must own* to you. Much more lively* and affecting must be the style of those who write in the height* of a present distress*. and accounts for his rigorous* behaviour to me. but now. did I say! […] I know not how it came. plin de viaţă) height culme. and tender years*. narrative. durere. it looked like love. scop. intenţie to bear (bore. has greatly affected me. placă de ceramică how to order the fire cum să potrivesc focul kiln cuptor potter olar to glaze a smălţui lead plumb firewood lemn de foc embers jăratec I plied the fire am întreţinut focul quite through cu totul. apogeu distress nefericire. But to be sure*. I had no reason to expect. to find him capable of so much openness. chinuri womb pântece. a depăşi) TEXT 5. forgive your poor daughter! How am I grieved* to find this trial so severe* upon me. before. farfurie pitcher ulcior ulcea pipkin gavanos to turn to a se apuca de lucru. a ţine la to put out (the fire) a stinge (focul) earthenware vessels vase de lut tile ţiglă. and before I knew what was the matter. punct culminant. doubtful lively vivid (însufleţit. O my unguarded* youth. and so it is: but love. […] Forgive. the mind tortured by the pangs* of uncertainty (the events then hidden in the womb* of fate). my dear father. […] O my dear parents.3. and of so much honour too. forgive me! but I found. however. I imagine. 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. crept. dubious uncertain. than the dry*. arătos a thing of so mean a nature un lucru atât de mărunt TEXT 5. Pamela [Pamela receives a letter from Mr. that I shall never be able to think of any body in the world but him! Presumption*! you will say. nay*. that my heart was too partial* in his favour. I beseech* you. I am quite overcome*. but with what may be called instantaneous descriptions and reflections (…). a se pune pe lucru to bake a coace strangely hard neobişnuit de tare end ţel. the womb of fate: incertitudinea sorţii dry sec. This was a good fortune.] This letter. She seems taken by surprise by her own feelings. upon me. is not a voluntary thing – Love. to my grief*. when I expected some new plot*. neutru to surmount to overcome (a birui. but it has crept*.4. B_. so much affection. Samuel Richardson. will ye* not in some 202 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . Samuel Richardson.Reader dish blid. nor when it began. like a thief. a învinge. în întregime at all deloc handsome frumos. can be. For here plainly* does he confess his great value for me. nenorocire pangs mâhnire. unanimated style of a person relating difficulties and dangers surmounted*. in which he confesses his affection for her.
will enable me to get over this heavy trial. of which many instances will occur in these works […]. a rupe memorandum notă. only dangerous attacks! After all. a înştiinţa mischief neajuns. for giving up so weakly. avertizare likewise de asemenea hadst (you) had thou hadst so well maintained thy post you put up resistance successfully avowed făţiş therefore aşadar. thy whole self. and to one too. In the diction. before summons* came. necaz wert were inconsiderately (în mod) nesocotit. of inferior manners. without ever consulting thy poor mistress* in the least*! But thy punishment will be the first and the greatest: and well.e.5. torn) out a smulge. a implora grieved amărât. that as in the one these are grave and solemn. sever grief durere. and when likewise* thou hadst* so well maintained thy post* against the most violent and avowed*. nechibzuit thyself yourself thy poor mistress biata ta stăpână (not) in the least câtuşi de puţin. a se furişa to beseech (besought) a ruga cu stăruinţă. în consecinţă to tear (tore. întristat. O my treacherous*. nicidecum traitor trădător (noun) deservest well …deservest thou to smart: you [i. differing from comedy. mai mult chiar to overcome a depăşi. Yet. whereas the grave romance sets the highest* before us: lastly. I must either not show you this confession of my weakness. a comic romance* is a comic epic poem* in prose. în mod clar rigorous aspru. Joseph Andrews (Preface) Now. a copleşi to be sure cu siguranţă to own a mărturisi presumption cutezanţă. însemnare TEXT 5.] plot uneltire. when I get home. 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.Reader measure excuse me? I never before knew. and therefore*. mâhnit severe trial încercare grea unguarded imprudent tender years vârstă fragedă ye you (pl. 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. Henry Fielding. burlesque itself may be sometimes admitted. unless* in writings of the Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 203 . and consequently. by preserving the ludicrous* instead of the sublime. and resignation to the Divine Will. as the serious epic from tragedy: its action being more extended and comprehensive*. [Memorandum*.) treacherous trădător (adj. intrigă plainly în mod deschis. perfidious traitor*! deservest* thou to smart. in its sentiments and diction*. who had used me so hardly.my heart] fully deserve to suffer summons chemare. or tear* it out of my writing. as I thought. îndrăzneală crept to creep (crept): a se strecura. But though we have sometimes admitted this in our diction. I think. to consider of this. so in the other they are light* and ridiculous: it differs in its characters by introducing persons of inferior rank. It differs from the serious romance in its fable* and action. for there it is never properly introduced. mâhnire partial to având o slăbiciune pentru nay (literary) ba mai mult. and introducing a greater variety of characters. in this. I hope.) couldst thou could you serve how couldst thou serve me thus? Cum ai putut să te porţi astfel? notice to give notice: a preveni. and the benefits of your good lesson and examples. containing a much larger circle of incidents.
as in appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest*. the affectation which arises from vanity is nearer to truth than the other. where we shall find the true excellence of the former to consist in the exactest copying of nature. not men. no two species of writing can differ more widely than the comic and the burlesque. so it is in the latter infinitely on the side of the writer. is more surprising. yet when it comes from vanity only. than to find him a little deficient in the quality he desires the reputation of. and the Ridiculous to describe than paint. in order to purchase* applause. so in the former we should ever confine* ourselves strictly to nature. yet it sits less awkwardly* on him than on the avaricious man. arises from the surprising absurdity. so they are as clearly distinct in their operations: for indeed. […] The only source of the true Ridiculous (as it appears to me) is affectation. who is the very reverse of what he would seem to be. and.Reader burlesque kind. Burlesque is in writing. or hath not the virtue he affects. so hypocrisy sets us on an endeavour to avoid censure*. or e converso*. for the Monstrous is much easier to paint than describe. Now. whereas in the Caricatura we allow all licence* – its aim is to exhibit monsters. for as the latter is ever* the exhibition* of what is monstrous and unnatural. when it proceeds from hypocrisy. any liberty which the painter hath* taken with the features of that alma mater*. as they proceed* from very different motives. than when from vanity. […] Now. and that in a higher and stronger degree when the affectation arises from hypocrisy. though. that. the affectation of liberality* in a vain* man differs visibly from the same affectation in the avaricious. it partakes* of the nature of ostentation: for instance. it be nearly allied to deceit*. to the degree he would be thought to have it. with those performances which the Italians call Caricatura. and consequently more ridiculous. what Caricatura is in painting. […] Let us examine the works of a comic history painter. and all distortions and exaggerations whatever are within its proper province*. if we examine it. From the discovery of this affectation arises the Ridiculous. It may be likewise noted. Indeed. which always strikes* the reader with surprise and pleasure. and in the same manner the comic writer and painter correlate to each other. and where our delight. And though these two causes are often confounded (for there is some difficulty in distinguishing them). in so much that a judicious eye instantly rejects anything outré*. as it hath not that violent repugnancy* of nature to struggle with. by concealing* our vices under an appearance of their opposite virtues. And here I shall observe. that affectation doth* not imply an absolute negation of those qualities which are affected. as in the former the painter seems to have the advantage. for to discover any one to be the exact reverse of what he affects. which this is not intended to be. which that of the hypocrite hath. 204 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . yet. for though the vain man is not what he would appear. affectation proceeds from one of these two causes. vanity or hypocrisy: for as vanity puts us on affecting false characters*. therefore. from the just* imitation of which will flow all the pleasure we can this way convey to a sensible* reader.
sferă affecting false characters pretending to be in a way that one is not. or lameness* endeavours to display* agility. smaller faults. fig. But for not being what they would be thought*. / Ci de-a nu fi ceea ce vrea să pară. exact sensible endowed with common sense (cu judecată. contradiction doth does deceit înşelătorie it partakes of se înrudeşte cu. of our pity. but when ugliness aims at the applause* of beauty. intrigă light uşor highest sets the highest before us aduce în faţa ochilor pe cei de rang superior diction stil ludicrous grotesc unless except ever always exhibition display (expunere) appropriating the manners of the highest to the lowest atribuirea obiceiurilor din lumea bună unor oameni din popor e converso (Italian)and viceversa to confine oneself to a se limita la just faithful. it is then that these unfortunate circumstances. The poet carries this very far: None are for being what they are in fault. […] Great vices are the proper objects of our detestation. 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. 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. but affectation appears to me the only true source of the Ridiculous. which at first moved our compassion.” Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 205 . comic romance roman comic comic epic poem poem eroicomic comprehensive cuprinzător fable subiect.: the primary source licence liberty province domeniu. face parte din liberality generosity (mărinimie. cu bun simţ) outré (French) exaggerated hath has alma mater (Latin) the nourishing mother.Reader […] Much less are natural imperfections the objects of derision. 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. tend* only to raise our mirth*. cu stângăcie.
to annoy ungracious răutăcios. I take to be made up of the shreds* and clippings* of the rest. Laurence Sterne. remarcabil good temper voie bună turn cotitură to get at (somebody) to irritate. lipsit de cordialitate/amabilitate to pelt a bombarda. In a word. with reverence be it spoken*. răspundere publică employment slujbă sport jucărie weight greutate. but because it is an excellence seldom* looked for. a izbuti. two contrary motions are introduced into it. yet with all the good temper* in the world I affirm it of her that in every stage of my life. and at every turn* and corner where she could get* fairly at me.Reader TEXT 5. that my main business does not stand still in my absence. 1718 […] was I Tristram Shandy. I wish I had been born in the Moon. Tristram Shandy (Vol. a asalta pitiful jalnic misadventure nenorocire cross potrivnic. Gentleman. – and it is this: That though my digressions are all fair*. Chapter V) On the fifth day of November. brought forth born scurvy păcătos. which were thought to be at variance* with each other. the ungracious* Duchess has pelted* me with a set of as pitiful* misadventures* and cross* accidents as ever small HERO sustained. or in any of the planets […] than in this vile*. been overlooked* by my reader. and it is progressive too. […] 206 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . povară signal însemnat. as you observe. as in my all digressions (one only excepted) there is a master-stroke* of digressive skill. dirty planet of ours. in a digression. not for want of penetration* in him. my work is digressive. – and at the same time. a reuşi public charges însărcinare. on my conscience. – not but the planet is well enough*. provided a man could be born in it to a great title* or to a great estate*. 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. and reconciled. Chapter XXII) For in this long digression which I was accidentally led into. and though I will not wrong her by saying she has ever made me feel the weight* of any great or signal* evil. I fear. Laurence Sterne. the merit of which has all along. and that I fly off* from what I am about. as far and as often too as any writer in Great-Britain.I.6. Tristram Shandy (Vol I.7. 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. or could any how contrive* to be called up to public charges* and employments* of dignity or power – but that is not my case […]. which. yet I constantly take care to order affairs so. nefericit TEXT 5. brought forth* into this scurvy* and disastrous world of ours. […] The machinery* of my work is of a species by itself. abject vile ticălos with reverence be it spoken fie spus cu tot respectul shreds zdrenţe clippings resturi. or expected indeed.
a trece cu vederea for want of penetration din pricina lipsei de pătrundere/înţelegere seldom arareori fair fără cusur. is truly pitiable*: For. one wheel within another*. – one cold eternal winter would reign* in every page of it. For which reason. whose distress*. it shall be kept a-going these forty years. bids* All hail*. has been kept agoing. incontestably. in general. – take them out of this book for instance. you might as well take the book along with them. from the beginning of this. what’s more. – and. slavă! dexterity îndemânare cookery gătit. so as to be not only for the advantage of the reader. and forbids the appetite to fail. you see. în contradicţie to reign a domni to step forth a păşi bridegroom mire to bid (bade. This is vile work*. a încâlci one wheel within another cu rotiţele îmbucându-se una întralta good spirits voie bună Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 207 . that the whole machine. – they are the life. I observe. master-stroke mişcare măiestrită skill meşteşug to overlook a-i scăpa.Reader Digressions. if it pleases the fountain of health to bless me so long with life and good spirits*. brings in variety. a sta pe loc vile work ticăloasă treabă adventitious întâmplător to involve a încurca. then there is an end of his digression. bidden) a ura all hail trăiască!. and if he goes on with his main work. All the dexterity* is in the good cookery* and management of them. are the sunshine. cum trebuie. but also of the author. sadea to fly off a-şi lua zborul machinery mecanism at variance potrivnic. his whole work stands stock-still*. in this matter. and have so complicated and involved* the digressive and progressive movements. artă culinară distress stare jalnică pitiable vrednic de milă to stand stock-still a încremeni. I have constructed the main work and the adventitious* parts of it with such intersections. from that moment. restore them to the writer. the soul of reading. he steps forth* like a bridegroom*. if he begins a digression.
whose trembling hand Turns on the wretched* hearth* the expiring* brand*! (…) (…) yonder* see that hoary swain*. modelat. to all the country dear. Go. look within. but relieved* their pain: The long-remembered beggar was his guest. Who. cucernic) e’er ever to fawn to seek attention and admiration by flattering (a se ploconi. propped* on that rude* staff*. By doctrines fashioned* to the varying hour. whose age Can with no cares except his own engage. but his sad emblem now. More skilled to raise the wretched* than to rise. looks up to see The bare arms* broken from the withering* tree On which. he climbed the loftiest bough*.Reader UNIT 6 ENGLISH PRE-ROMANTIC POETRY TEXT 6. And passing rich* with forty pounds* a year. to scold (a dojeni. His house was known to all the vagrant* train*. Or hers. Then his first joy. passing rich trecând drept bogat. Oliver Goldsmith. 208 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . chid: to rebuke. The Deserted Village A man he was. Remote* from towns he ran his godly* race. hoinar. and ask if peace be there. or seek for power. fiind considerat bogat pound liră remote far away. George Crabbe. Whom the smooth* stream and smoother sonnet please. Go! if the peaceful cot* your praises share. a aprecia the wretched cei sărmani/nenorociţi vagrant vagabond. If peace be his – that drooping* weary* sire*. cerşetor train alai. devout (evlavios. croit to prize a preţui. that offspring* round their feeble* fire. a boy. The Village Ye* gentle* souls who dream of rural ease*. a alina. Nor e’er* had changed. a mustra) wandering rătăcire to relieve to bring alleviation (a uşura.2. a linguşi) fashioned potrivit. Unpracticed he to fawn*. He chid* their wanderings*.1. Far other aims his heart had learned to prize*. Whose beard descending swept his aged breast. a mângâia) TEXT 6. Or theirs. distant godly pious. the matron* pale. cortegiu şir chid to chide. nor wished to change his place.
Of human race. and man made the town. Inflames imagination. rezemat rude rudimentary. to stimulate. As varied. linişte. o’er over to exalt to raise. What wonder then that health and virtue. William Cowper. sorbitură grove crâng. to elevate. The love of Nature. gifts That can alone make sweet the bitter draught* That life holds to all. the noble scorn* Of tyrant pride*. nenorocit hearth vatră. urmaş feeble plăpând.3. With all the social offspring of the heart*. and. should most abound And least be threatened in the fields and groves*? draught înghiţitură. ecstatic joy unconfined unlimited chief most important suffering worth men of merit and virtue who suffer scorn contempt. liniştit cot căsuţă drooping aplecat. pace smooth calm. losing vitality (care se usucă) loftiest bough ramura cea mai înaltă TEXT 6.) gentle nobil. disdain (dispreţ) tyrant pride the arrogance of arbitrary or unjust power the social offspring of the heart the community. through the breast Infuses every tenderness. (…) The sympathies of love and friendship dear. and far Beyond dim earth exalts* the swelling* thought. the large ambitious wish To make them blest. James Thomson. ales. simple. to excite swelling expanding rapture ecstasy. dumbravă Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 209 . sprijinit. unconfined*. The Task (1785) God made the country. raised To rapture* and divine astonishment. 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. coarse. părinte offspring vlăstar. and as high: Devotion. încovoiat weary exhausted (istovit) sire (poetic) tată. generos ease tihnă. chief*. jalnic.Reader ye you (pl. slab matron mamă de familie wretched biet. lacking adornments staff toiag bare arms ramurile/crengile desfrunzite withering decaying. whom the heart feels as a family TEXT 6. cămin expiring dying (care se stinge) brand tăciune yonder (poetic) there hoary swain săteanul cărunt/nins/venerabil propped proptit. (…) As fast the correspondent passions rise.4. the sigh for suffering worth* Lost in obscurity.
Struggling in my father’s hands. I’ll tell thee: He is called by thy* name. who made thee? Dost thou know who made thee? Little Lamb. Like a fiend* hid* in a cloud. I thought best To sulk* upon my mother’s breast. a ţâşni. Little Lamb. not violent (blajin. gentle and uncomplaining (blând. wooly* bright. Little Lamb. naked.The Lamb (from Songs of Innocence) Little Lamb who made thee*? Dost thou know* who made thee? Gave thee life. exhausted to sulk to be silent and resentful a se bosumfla. Into the dangerous world I leapt*. We are called by his name.5. By the stream and o’er* the mead*. Gave thee such a tender voice.6. William Blake. and bid thee feed*. God bless thee. I’ll tell thee. luncă) wooly made of or feeling like wool (lânos) to rejoice to feel or show great joy thy your meek very quiet. supus) mild gentle. a închide weary tired. Softest clothing. God bless thee.Reader TEXT 6. For he calls himself a Lamb: He is meek*. Bound* and weary*. Little Lamb. and he is mild*. William Blake. Striving against my swaddling bands*. Making all the vales rejoice*! Little Lamb. bound: a lega strâns. my father wept*. te-a poftit să te hrăneşti o’er over mead meadow (pajişte. Helpless. 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. Infant Sorrow (from Songs of Experience) My mother groaned*. a fi supărat/îmbufnat 210 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . a înlănţui. who made thee who made you dost thou know do you know bid thee feed ţi-a oferit hrană. a suspina wept to weep (wept): a plânge leapt to leap. leapt: a sări. piping* loud. to groan a geme. Gave thee clothing of delight. îngăduitor) TEXT 6. He became a little child: I a child and thou a lamb. cuminte.
William Blake. bound: to tie briar a wild bush with branches that have thorns (măceş. borne: to give birth to grave mormânt tomb-stone piatră funerară gown mantie.Reader TEXT 6. well. And Priests in black gowns* were walking their rounds*. and let us away* Till the morning appears in the skies.” The little ones leaped* and shouted and laughed And all the hills echoed*. iarbă neagră) TEXT 6. green pajişte verde at rest calm. And then go home to bed. And we cannot go to sleep. And every thing else is still. And ‘Thou shalt not’* writ* over the door. bore.8. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Innocence) When the voices of children are heard on the green*. William Blake. Where I used to play on the green. The Garden of Love (from Songs of Experience) I went to the Garden of Love.” “Well. And laughing is heard on the hill. And the hills are all covered with sheep. “Then come home my children. a sălta. a ţopăi to echo a răsuna Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 211 . the sun is gone down. tranquil. And binding* with briars* my joys and desires. And the gates of the Chapel were shut. robă walking their rounds făcându-şi rondul binding to bind. And I saw it was filled with graves*. And saw what I never had seen: A Chapel was built in the midst*. let us play.” “No. midst middle ‘Thou shalt not’ ‘You shall not’ (the interdictory formula beginning the ten commandments in the Bible) writ written bore to bear. to disappear to leap (leaped/leapt) a sări. So I turned to the Garden of Love. And tomb-stones* where flowers should be. Come. for it is yet day. go and play till the light fades away*. That so many sweet flowers bore*. My heart is at rest* within my breast. And the dews* of night arise. come leave off play. no. in the sky the little birds fly. Besides. at ease dew rouă let us away să megrem to fade away to die.7.
Dick. and sport* in the wind.10. 212 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . And he opened the coffins and set them all free. William Blake. laughing. The Chimney Sweeper* (from Songs of Innocence) When my mother died I was very young. So if all do their duty. As Tom was a-sleeping. And wash in a river. There’s little Tom Dacre. Though the morning was cold. weep. weep!” So your chimneys I sweep. Tom was happy and warm. Joe.9. my children. The days of my youth rise fresh in my mind. never mind it. weep.Reader TEXT 6. He'd have God for his father and never want* joy. whisperings şoapte. William Blake. And your winter and night in disguise. Ned and Jack. all their bags left behind. they need not fear harm. You know that the soot cannot spoil your white hair. foşnet. They rise upon clouds. was shaved: so I said “Hush*. for when your head's bare. and we rose* in the dark. freamăt dale vale. and shine in the Sun. Tom. Then come home. who cried when his head That curled* like a lamb’s back. they run.” And so he was quiet. My face turns green* and pale. Then down a green plain leaping. Your spring and your day are wasted* in play. And got with our bags and our brushes to work. Were all of them locked up in coffins* of black. the sun is gone down. Nurse’s Song (from Songs of Experience) When the voices of children are heard on the green And whisperings* are in the dale*. And by* came an Angel who had a bright key. if he'd be a good boy. And my father sold* me while yet my tongue Could scarcely cry “weep*. he had such a sight*!– That thousands of sweepers. And the dews of night arise. vâlcea my face turns green as in “green with envy” to waste a pierde. And the Angel told Tom. Then naked and white. And so Tom awoke. and that very night. and in soot* I sleep. a irosi TEXT 6.
And are gone to praise God and his Priest and King. William Blake. Then cherish* pity. The Chimney Sweeper (from Songs of Experience) A little black thing among the snow. Who make up a Heaven of our misery*. O what a multitude they seemed. Or like harmonious thunderings* the seats* of heaven among. Crying “weep*. They think they have done me no injury*. Thousands of little boys and girls raising their innocent hands. Till into the high dome* of Paul’s* they like Thames’ waters flow. potoleşte-te. with wands* as white as snow. The children walking two and two in red and blue and green. but multitudes of lambs. And smiled among the winter’s snow. Now like a mighty* wind they raise to heaven the voice of song. a se juca to want to feel the need or longing for something. fii liniştit sight vision coffin sicriu. Beneath them sit the aged men. Because I was happy upon the heath*. risen): a se scula. to be lacking something rose to rise (rose. coşciug by aproape. their innocent faces clean. it is ironic that “sweep” becomes “weep” (a plânge) soot funingine to curl a se încreţi/cârlionţa hush taci. nedreptate misery intense unhappiness or suffering TEXT 6. 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). And taught me to sing the notes of woe. wise guardians of the poor. alături. The hum* of multitudes was there. William Blake.” weep see explanation above woe intense grief/sorrow/unhappiness thy your say? ia spune! heath câmpie stearpă injury rău. weep!” in notes of woe*! “Where are thy* father and mother? say*?” “They are both gone up to church to pray. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Innocence) ‘Twas* on a Holy Thursday*. And because I am happy and dance and sing. lest* you drive* an angel from your door. hornar sold to sell.Reader chimney sweeper coşar. these flowers of London town! Seated* in companies they sit with radiance* all their own*.12. în preajmă to sport a zburda. They clothed me in the clothes of death. Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural 213 . Grey-headed beadles* walked before.11. a se deştepta TEXT 6.
Nor poverty the mind appal*. a monument of baroque architecture seated aşezaţi radiance great happiness that shows in someone’s face. William Blake. in the Revelation) to cherish to treasure something (a preţui. fruitful fecund. For where-e’er* the sun does shine. roditor fed to feed (fed): a hrăni usurous cămătăresc (see again the Glossary) bleak sterp. when the ascension of Christ to heaven is celebrated beadle an officer in British churches in the past.Reader ‘twas it was th Holy Thursday Ascension Day. re-built th in the late 17 century. And where-e’er the rain does fall. Holy Thursday (from Songs of Experience) Is this a holy thing to see. Babe can never hunger there. sterp. especially by keeping order wand baghetă dome hemispherical roof St Paul’s Cathedral the largest cathedral in London. And their fields are bleak* and bare*. And their ways are filled with thorns*. 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. a goni TEXT 6. ghimpe where-e’er wherever to appal to make someone feel shocked and upset (a îngrozi) 214 Proiectul pentru Învăţământul Rural . the 40 day after Easter. a iubi) lest ca să nu. It is eternal winter there.13. who helped the priest in various ways. fertil. soft. lugubru bare gol. 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. ca nu cumva to drive (from) a alunga. and to the Last Judgement. In a rich and fruitful* land Babes reduced to misery. rece.
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