The end of the 18thácentury saw the beginning of political as well as literary revolutions in many countries. There was an artistic rebellion against the classical form.
Many poets, who started to write in the classical form broke with neoclassical conventions. They began to draw their subject matter from nature, rural life, often using the ballads and tales of medieval times and established the great English Romantic school.
The two major authors in the early part of the English romantic movement were Robert Burns and William Blake.
Robert Burns 'poems are romantic in their feeling of kinship with all mankind, love of nature, liberty and democracy ( "Auld Lang Syne", "To Mary in Heaven", "Flow Gently", "Scots Wha Hae", "A Man's a Man for A'That "). Most of the poems are written in the Scottish dialect.
William Blake was a mystic to whom the truth of life was revealed in visions. He was a rebel against conventional religion and morals, and an adherent of the French Revolution. ( "Songs of Innocence", "Songs of Experience").
The English romantic poets of the first half of the 19thácentury included five major poets in the history of English literature:
1) William Wordsworth who treated the themes of ordinary life and nature ( "Lyrical Ballads", "The Excursion", "Ode on the Intimation of Immortality") about 500 sonnets, among which "The World Is Too Much With Us".
2) Samuel Taylor Coleridge combined weird, supernatural themes with philosophic ideas ( "Kubla Khan", "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner", "Christabel"). His prose works include "Biographia Literaria" and lectures on Shakespeare.
3) George Gordon Byron, famous for his gloomy, melancholy poems who influenced all European poets ( "Childe Harold's Pilgrimage", "The Bride of Abydos", "Manfred", "Don Juan").
4) Percy Bysshe Shelley, rebelled not only intellectually but personally against conventional religion and morality ( "The Revolt of Islam", "Prometheus Unbound", a poetic drama, "Adonais", a lament on the death of John Keats, "Ode to the West Wind "," Ode to a Skylark ").
5) John Keats 'poetry is characterized by rich imagery and of great musical quality (sonnets "When I have Fears That I May Cease to Be", "Ode to a Nightingale", "Ode On a Grecian Urn"; romance "Eve of St Agnes "; ballad" La Belle Dame Sans Merci ".
Among the other poets of this period were Robert Southey.
Sir Walter Scott's poetic work deal with the legendary and historical part of England and Scotland ( "The Lay of the Last Minstrel", "The Lady of the Lake"). But his most important place in English literature is due to his historical novels ( "Guy Mannering", "Ivanhoe", "The Talisman").
Jane Austen is master of character and realistic depiction ( "Sense and Sensibility", "Pride and Prejudice", "Northanger Abbey", "Persuasion".
The writers of nonfiction include Charles Lamb ( "Essays of Elia"). William Hazlitt ( "Table Talk or Original Essays on Men and Manners"). Thomas De Quincey ( "The Confessions of an English Opium Eater", "Joan of Arc"); A lyric poet Walter Savage Landor ( "Imaginary Conversations of Literary Men and Statesmen", "Imaginary Conversations of Greeks and Romans").
The second part of the 19thácentury is called the Victorian Age and is characterized by adherence to conventions in manners and intellectual outlook. On the whole the literature had didactic and moral aims.
Victorian literature reflected the social problems that arose with industrialization of the country and conflicts between science and religion that was caused by Charles Robert Darwin's "On the Origin of Species by Natural Selection.
In Victorian days there were two opposing points of view on English political and social life. One held that the British institutions were perfect. The writings of Thomas Babington Macaulay supported the optimistic view ( "Critical and Historical Essays", "History of England from the Accession of James II"). The other point of view on English life urged reforms and their works they undertook critical study of the society. Thomas Carlyle, advocate of reforms, wrote "The French Revolution", "On Heroes, Hero-Worship", and "The Heroic in History", "Past and Present". John Ruskin wrote about the conditions of English working class. He is also known for his art criticism "Modern Painters". To Ruskin the esthetic element was as important as the moral element.
Matthew Arnold in his essays criticized educational standards and religion "Essays in Criticism, First Series", "God and the Bible".
Two major poets are noted in the Victorian period. Alfred, Lord Tennyson, who reflected the conflict between faith and reason. He set forth the idea that out of wrong or evil conditions destiny will ultimately bring beneficial for the English empire order "The Lotus-Eaters", "Locksley Hall", "In Memoriam", "Idylls of the King". The latter is a romantic narrative derived from Marlory's Arthurian romances.
Robert Browing had less devotion to perfect forms, but more realistic and understanding treatment of human character ( "Pippa Passes", "The Ring and the Book", "Dramatic Idylls", "My Last Duchess").
Among the other Victorian poets was Algernon Charles Swinburne, who celebrated the pagan spirit of joy in life ( "Poems and Ballads", "Songs before Sunrise", "Tristram of Lyonesse").
Dante Gabriel Rossetti sought inspiration in medieval literature ( "The Blessed Damosel", "The House of Life").
Elizabeth Barrett Browning, wife of Robert Browning wrote "Sonnets from the Portuguese".
Five novelists dominate the Victorian period:
1. Charles Dickens is known for his attacks on social evils and vivid characters, humour and pathos "The Adventures of Oliver Twist", "Bleak House", "Hard Times", "Little Dorrit", "A Fale of Two Cities", "Great Expectations", etc.
2. William Makepeace Thackeray devoted himself to the depiction of upper-middle-class life ( "Vanity Fair", "The History of Henry Esmond", "The Virginians").
3. Mary Ann Evans known by the pen name of George Eliot described rural and provincial life ( "Adam Bede", "Mill on the Floss", "Silas Marner", "Daniel Deronda").
4. Thomas Hardy wrote novels pervaded by tragic destiny coming from the society and from within the characters themselves ( "Far from the Madding Crowd", "The Return of the Native", "Tess of the D'Urhervills", "Jude the Obscure "and many poems).
5. Charlotte Bronte ( "Jane Eyre").
The other novelists were Elizabeth Gaskell; the Bronte sisters, Emily and Ann; Wilkie Collins, Richard D. Blackmore, George Meredith, Rudyard Kipling, Robert Louis Stevenson, Oscar Wilde, Samuel Butler and others.
English Literature (20 century)
W.H.Auden called the 20thácentury "The Age of Anxiety". The twentieth century as many critics observed was a time of movements, radical artistic theories. It was a time for abstraction. The modernist revolution that started in the European, especially French arts, brought revolutionary ideas, complex in fundamental ways. The tradition collapsed, the literary systems collapsed and the basis of literature was to be recreated. The new movements multiplied, called themselves abstract names (Imagism, naturalism, futurism, constructivism, etc.)
Ezra Pound played a central part in starting these movements. Another influential author was T.S. Eliot, who bridged the space between the British and American literature. And the 20thácentury literature is considered to belong to American authors.
Th. Dreiser was the great representative of modern American Naturalism. Jack London, a Nietzschean socialist represented the restless American mind. This was the century of individualism, decline of individual and societal moral, arrogant commercialism, disillusionment. But the fundamental change that occurred in fiction and poetry lay in the nature of literary language itself.
The main theory of modernism was proclaimed by Gertrude Stein. She was determined to kill in literature what was not dead, the nineteenth century which was so sure of evolution and prayers.
The neo-Darwinian view of nature and man gave way to a freer, more complex vision - the relation between mind and object can never be static and must be understood as part of developing flux. Consciousness manifests transitivity of being as seen in a Heraclitean "river of stream" which became a modernist epistemological metaphor. James Joyce succeeded in attracting attention of other authors and critics by a great knowledge of intimate psychology and was the first to present a literary mode of "stream of consciousness". This was a crucial step, followed by new devices, forms, rhythms, ideas, diversity of literary trends. The century began in the spirit of Decadence, avant-garde. The new poetry and prose required a new criticism, a changed version of aesthetics and cultural values.
Novelists and short story writers of this period:
Richard Aldington ( "Death of a Hero"), Gilbert Keith Chesterton ( "the Man Who Was Thursday"), Joseph Conrad ( "Youth", "Lord Jim"), Archibald Joseph Cronin ( "Hatter's Castle"), Edgar Morgan Forster ( "A Passage to India"), John Galsworthy ( "The Forsyte Saga"), Graham Green ( "The Heart of the Matter"), Aldous Leonard Huxley ( "Point Counter Point"), David Herbert Lawrence ( "Sons and Lovers "), Katherine Mansfield (" Bliss and Other Stories "), William Somerset Maugham (" Of Human Boundage "," Theatre "," Cakes and Ale "," The Moon and Sixpence ", etc.), Hector Hugh Munro (" Saki "," The Cronicles of Clovis "), John Boynton Priestly (" The Good Companions "), Evelyn Arthur St.John Waugh (" Vile Bodies "," The Loved One "), Herbert George Wells (science fiction), William Golding ( "Lord of the Flies"), Virginia Woolfe ( "Mrs Dalloway", "To the Lighthouse").
Poets:áWystan Hugh Auden ( "The Dance of Death"), Richard Aldington ( "Collected Poems"), Alfred Edgar Coppard ( "Yokohama", "Garland and Other Poems"), Thomas Stearns Eliot ( "The Waste Land"), Wilfred Owen ( "Poems"), James Joice ( "Chamber Music"), William Empson ( "The Teasers").
In the first half of the century the greatest three of them were: William Butler Yeats ( "The Poetical Works of William B.Yeats"), Dylan Thomas ( "Poem in October", "Poem on his Birthday", etc.) and Thomas Stearns Eliot.
In the second half of the 20thácentury poets reacted to the symbolism by their refusal from symbols and metaphors, surrealism and claimed "healthy", rational clear and rhythmic poetry, though they did not form any definite trend. Poetical traditions were debated in two opposite anthologies: "New Lines" and "Mavericks".
A new and very special trend in modern English poetry was proclaimed in the lyrics of "The Beatles" early in the 60-s. The songs were dedicated to eternal themes: love, the pain of separation, loveliness, gift of life and protest against vulgar conventions. Most of the lyrics were written by J. Lennon and P. Maccarthney. There were other poets who were close to "The Beatles" in the ironic world outlook and poetic forms of parodies on pop art. They published their works in "The Liverpool Scene": Adrian Maurice Henri, Roger MacGough and Brian Patten.
The twentieth century is immensely diverse in literary criticism and literary forms (gentres). Besides the already existing literary gentres there appeared a new literary form of writing - Linguistics (decoding textology, stylistics, philology, semantics).
Epic Poetry, A type of poetry, usually in the form of a long narrative poem known as an epic, dealing with action of broad sweep and grandeur, and of traditional or historic interest.
In most epics the story of the fortunes or deeds of a single individual furnished the chief interest and gives unity of the composition. Commonplace acts and details of everyday life may appear, but they serve as background for the story, and are told in the same heroic style and elevated language as in the rest of the poem. Epic poems are not merely entertaining stories of legendary or historical heroes. They serve to sum up and express the ideals or nature of an entire nation at a significant or crucial period of its existence. Epic poems fall into three groups:
1) the folk, or popular epic, which developed from the orally transmitted folk poetry of tribal bards and were written by anonymous poets (Beowulf).
2) the literary or art epics, which are the creation of individual and known poets, who consciously use a long-established form and accepted models. ( "Farie Queen" by E. Spenser and "Paradise Lost" by J. Milton).
3) the mock epic, which satirizes contemporary ideas or conditions ( "Rape of the Lock" by A. Pope).
Epicureanism, System of philosophy based chiefly on the teachings of the Greek philosopher Epicurus.
The essential doctrine is that pleasure is the Supreme good and the main goal in life. However intellectual pleasures are preferred to sensual ones. True happiness is the serenity resulting from the absence of pain and especially from the conquest of fear of the gods, of death, and of the afterlife. The cardinal virtue in the Epicureanism system of ethics is prudence, or the balancing of pleasure and pain. A just way of life requires a balancing of pleasure and pain so as to minimize disquietude.
Epicurus preferred friendship to love, as being less disquieting. Only through self-restraint, moderation and detachment can one achieve the kind of tranquility that is true happiness.
Epigram,a verse or short poem ending in some ingenious or witty turn.
Epistle,áa formal and didactic letter, often intended for publication Aristotle and Epicurus employed it to express their philosophical views. Twenty one books in the new Testament are epistles written by apostles to explain Christian doctrine. From the Renaissance to the present, The epistle, in verse and prose, has held a prominent place in literature. Examples: "Provincial letters" by Blaise Pascal, "The Epistle to Dr Arbuthnot" by Alexander Pope, "A letter to Maria Gisborne" by Percy Bysshe Shelley.
Epitomeá(Bookish), short summary or short essay, extract from a written text, resume
Epitaph, Brief commemorative inscription on a tomb or monument. Greek epitaphs were the first to possess literary value. The epitaph was introduced to Britain by the Romans and were until the 13thácentury written in Latin. During the Elizabethan Age the writing of the epitaphs in the form of epigrams became popular. Noteworthy among epitaphs are those written by Alexander Pope and John Milton.
Esoteric, A term used to denote an inner, or hidden meaning. It is often used synonymously with "mystic" in connection with a doctrine observed by certain disciples of Buddhism. The antonym exoteric signifies that which is external, or easily comprehensible.
Esotericism, Holding secret doctrines of correspondence between all parts of the invisible and the visible cosmos; the conviction that nature is a living entity owing to a divine presence of life-force; the need for mediating elements (symbols, rituals, angels, visions) to access spiritual knowledge and spiritual transmutation when obtaining this knowledge. Esotericism is the metaphysical point of unity of all religions, that are believed to converge.
Essay, A literary composition, personal in its point of view and informal in style and method. The term is applied usually to a short discourse as well as to a lengthy and systematic studies, such as John Locke's "Essay Concerning Human Understanding" (1690) or a poetical work, for example A. Pope's "Essay on Man" (+1733) . It is usually confined to a particular aspect of its subject.
A good English essayist was Francis Bacon. His essays appeared in 1597. They were informal without a special structure. Dryden's "Essay on Dramatic Poesy" is longer and more logically organized.
In the 18thácentury Joseph Addison and Sir Richard Steele wrote essays in their literary periodicals "The Tatler" and "The Spectator". After these journals the essays became heavily moral and didactic and almost disappeared. At the end of the 18thácentury the essay had its revival in the "Covent Garden Journal" and in Dr Samuel Johnson's essays in the "Rambler" and "Adventurer".
The 19thácentury witnessed the development of the formal essay, literary and critical. To the notable group of essayists of their period belong William Hazlitt, Thomas Macaulay, Thomas De Quincey.
After the middle of the 19thácentury critical, literary, philosophical or scientific essays were characterized by comparative brevity and stylistic individuality. John Ruskin, Robert Louis Stevenson, Thomas Huxley, T.C. Eliot, Virginia Woolf are notable essayists of this period.
In the 20thácentury a satirical and humorous type of essay was cultivated by G.K. Chesterton, Edgar Allan Poe.
Euphuism,the pedantic or affected use of words or language
Existentialism,a literary and philosophical movement, which came into existence in France in 1 943 under the leadership of Jean Paul Sartre. The basic theory of existentialism is contained in the famous words of Descartes, "I think; therefore I am". According to existentialism, reality is defined by the mind, and has no meaning apart from man's intellectual recognition of it; yet an outer and collective reality exists, creating a disparity and contradiction between man's inner self and his position and function in real world. Existence is senseless, but the responsibility for man's life (existentialists deny divine guidance) is in man's hands. The individual is responsible for every movement he makes, and in the end he is the complete result of his own actions. This responsibility creates man's sense of anguish, from which he can hope to emancipate himself only by realizing himself to his fullest extent.
Exoteric, 1) comprehensible to or suited to the public; popular
2) of or related to the outside; external
Expressionism, A movement in art schools of the 20thácentury. The aim of the artists was not to depict aspects of reality, but to express the emotions aroused in him by reality to express the nature of a subject. The physical characteristics of a subject are modified, omitted and supplemented and presented in a distorted and exaggerated form.
In expressionistic drama or literature, characters and scenes are presented in a distorted form. The movement is represented by Eugene O'Neill, Elmer L.Rice, J.H. Lawson in America.
The British author Virginia Woolf is noted as an expressionist; in her works V.Woolf is concerned not with reproducing reality, but in expressing the subjective feelings of the characters, in each case women. She gives a detailed account of their thoughts, sensations and emotions as they go through her consciousness.
Fabian Society, An English socialist education organization. It was established by socialists in ˛Ŕ˝ ¸Ó Ô│˝│ý˝ţ˛ Ô│˝│ýńň˝ ˛ ¸ţ˛ŔŔ with the aims for a better world. The young men believed it was necessary to struggle for social equality. The Fabian society enrolled prominent writers, economists, historians, teachers, members of Parliament and the Labour Party leaders. The basic theoretical views of the Fabians were formulated in the "Basis". The theory was based on eclectic economic views. The movement rejected the Marxian theory of class struggle. According to Fabians transition from capitalism to socialism would be accomplished by the whole nation. The "Fabian Essays" edited by G.B. Shaw appeared in 1889 and have since been classics of English socialist thought. It was followed by pamphlets ( "Fabian Tracts") distinguished by literary quality. Besides G.B. Shaw another novelist H.G. Wells was also an active member of the Fabians. In the middle of the 20thácentury the membership of the Fabian Society rose to thousands including over a hundred parliamentarians.
Fable,a term which in general sense denotes the incidents or plot of any fictions narrative, but more specifically and frequently signifies a literary composition in prose and verse in which a story is made by the means for conveying a universal spiritual truth. The moral is presented symbolically and usually is derived from a conflict among inanimate objects or animals which are given the attributes of rational beings. The fable differs from the parable, which is also a short narrative designed to convey a moral truth, but the fable is concerned with events that are impossible in life and nature, whereas the parable always deals with possible events.
One of the earliest and also most notable collections of animal fables is that of Aesop, reputedly a Greek slave who lived in the 6thácentury B.C. In the 17thácentury the greatest of all French fabulists was Gean de La Fantaine. The best of all English writers of fables was John Gay whose "Fables" (1738) written in sprightly verse are characterized by great originality and wit.
Fairytales,áin folklore these are stories in which the folk imagination not only conceives of fairyland as a distinct domain, but also imagines fairies as living in actual surroundings such as hills, valleys, trees.
The belief in fairies (supernatural creatures) was a universal attribute of early folk culture.
The traditional characteristics of fairies are depicted in literature in such words as Shakespeare's "Midsummer Night's Dream", "Romeo and Juliet", "Lady Macbeth"; John Milton's "Comus"; Andrew Lang's "Blue Fairy Tale Book", "Red Fairy Tale Book"; William Butler Yeat's "Irish Fairy Tales".
Fantasy,images or imaginary narratives that distort or entirely depart from reality. It is a genre that uses magic and supernatural phenomena as a primary element of plot, theme or setting. Fantasy differs from science fiction in that it does not involve any logical thinking. The most successful fantasy in literature is "The Lord of the Rings" by J.R.R. Tolkein.
Figures of speech (Stylistic devices)
A class of rhetorical devices for giving particular emphasis to ideas and sentiments.
In antiquity about 250 figures were recognized.
Since the conceivable modes of departure from plain and ordinary speech are countless, a definite enumeration of such figures is difficult. The figures most commonly recognized are:
1. Allegory,áa type of figurative narration consisting of a prolonged metaphor in which the story directly presented is intended to convey, by means of symbolism, another story. Famous works in English literature based on allegory are "the Faerie Queene" (E. Spenser), "Pilgrim's Progress" by John Bunyan and "Absalom and Achitophel" by John Dryden.
2. Anticlimaxádenotes the device by which ideas are made abruptly to diminish in dignity or importance at the end of a sentence or passage, generally for satirical effect.
3. Antithesis signifies the juxtaposition of two words, phrases, clauses or sentences contrasted or opposed in meaning, in such a way as to give emphasis to contrasting ideas. Example A. Pope: "To err is human, to forgive divine"
4. Apostrophe is the device by which an actor turns from his audience, or a writer from his readers, to address a person, usually either absent or deceased, an inanimate object, or an abstract idea.
John Milton in his poem "Il Penseroso" invokes the spirit of melancholy- "Hail divinest Melancholy, whose saintly visage is too bright to hit the sense of human sight"
Climaxáconsists in the arrangement of words, clauses or sentences in the order of their importance, the least forcible coming first "It is an outrage to bind a Roman citizen; it is a crime to scourge him; it is almost parricide to kill him; but to crucify him- what shall I say to this?
Euphemismáis the substitution of a delicate or inoffensive term or phrase for one that has coarse, sordid or unpleasant associations. (To pass away- to die)
Exclamation denotes a sudden outcry or interjection expressing violent emotion ( "Lady Macbeth" Out, out damned spot ...! "Hamlet-" O villain, villain, smiling damned villain!)
Hyperboleáis a form of inordinate exaggeration according to which a person or thing in depicted as being better or worse, or larger or smaller than is actually the case. (Thomas Macaulay: Dr Johnson drank his tea in oceans)
Litotes is the opposite of hyperbole and is an understatement "The English poet Thomas Gray showed no inconsiderable powers as a prose writer" which has the meaning that Gray was a very good prose writer.
Interrogationá(Rhetorical question) is the asking of questions not to gain information but to assert emphatically the obvious answer (Did you help me when I needed help.? Did you offer to intercede in my behalf? Did you do anything to lessen my load?)
Ironyáis a humorous and slightly sarcastic mode of speech in which words we used to convey a meaning contrary to their literal sense. Jonathan Swift "Modest Proposal" - "the people of Ireland should rid themselves of poverty by selling their children to the rich, who should eat them".
Metaphoráis a figure of speech in which a word or phrase denoting one kind of idea or object is used in place of another word or phrase for the purpose of suggesting a likeness between the two which is usually implied "the man tore through the building".
Simileáexpresses by means of the words "like" or "as". "Reason is to faith as the eye to the telescope".
Metonymyáconsists in the use of a word or phrase for another to which it bears an important relation, as the effect for the cause, the abstract for the concrete "He was an avid reader of Chaucer". "She kept a good table (food)".
Synecdocheáis closely related to metonymy. It is a device where by the part is made to stand for the whole, the whole for the part, the species for the genus. "The president's cabinet contained the best brains of the country"
Onomatopoeiaáis the imitation of natural sounds by words "the humming bee", "the whizzing arrow".
Personificationáis the representation of inanimate objects or abstract ideas as living beings. "Necessity is the mother of invention", "night enfolded the town in its ebon wings".
Genre, A style, a particular kind or sort. The term is applied to works of literature or art.
Greek literature,had a formative effect upon all European literature. In the early period (the second millennium B.C) the Greek people possessed an oral literature, composed of songs about wars, funerals and the art of the ballad must have developed from them. The Greek epic reached its height in the "Iliad" and "Odyssey" of Homer. The poems started a literary tradition in verse.
In the 6thácentury B.C Aeschylus wrote about 90 plays, and then came Sophocles, who was noted for his studies of human emotions. Euripides, Aristophanes, Socrates had a strong influence on literature, both poetry and prose.
The early Christian writers who transcribed and compiled the New Testament made use of Greek.
History, A systematic narrative or account of past events, particularly of those affecting nations, arts, sciences. It is differentiated from chronicles, which merely record events. The historian arranges historical facts in logical order and interprets them critically, in accordance with the results of his arrangements. The human element involved in critical interpretation is a factor that can not make history an exact science. Human knowledge increases its scope through ages and each new science or study contributes to a knowledge of man as a social being and of man in his relationship with the physical world.
The first historian, "Father of History", Herodotus recording some events with great accuracy mingled it with many fabulous happenings and was also known as the "Father of Lies".
In the 18thácentury the English historian, Edward Gibbon wrote one of the masterpieces of historical scholarship, "The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire". Thomas Macaulay, and Thomas Cardyle were the 19thácentury historians noted for their objective treatment of history.
Hymn,áin the first years of Christianity any song in praise of God. Later there were written sacred poems and set to music. Hymn writing was developed by a monk who is considered to be the father of hymns - St. Ephrem of Edessa.
The earliest hymns in English were translated from Latin, and only in the 17-th century a book of original English hymns was published by Orlando Gribbons ( "Hymns and Songs" of the Church). In the 18-th century English hymns became established as part of the regular service of the Anglican Church.
Humanism, The revival of classical learning and speculative inquiry beginning in the 15thácentury displaced Scholasticism from its dominant position as the principal philosophy of Western Europe and deprived churchmen of the monopoly of learning which they had previously held. The invention of printing increased tremendously the circulation of books and spread new ideas throughout Europe. Sir Thomas More in England applied the New Learning to the evaluation of church practices and the development of a more accurate Knowledge of the Scriptures. The scholarly studies laid the basis on which the reformers claimed the Bible rather than the Roman Catholic Church as the source of all religious authority.
Idealism, A term applied to various systems of thought in which all nature and experience are explained in terms of ideas, or products of intellect.
The ancient Greek philosopher Plato considered a world of unchanging ideas as the only reality. Medieval realism postulated a similar world in the concept of "universals".
Modern idealism differs from the classical form in that it does not place ideal reality outside the world of experience and places it in the consciousness of man.
During the 19th century the development of the physical sciences, aided by the trend to naturalism, caused a decline in the popularity of idealism.
Idyll,álittle form of image, originally, a short descriptive poem of a rural or pastoral character. In the middle ages the classical meaning of the form was lost and short descriptive poems on a great variety of subjects were called idylls.
In the second half of the 19thácentury, in "Idylls of the King" by Alfred Lord Tennyson the term was used as a title for lyrical and narrative poems. At the present time the term idyll is usually applied to any simple description, in poetry or prose, of country life and pastoral scenes.
Imagism, The esthetic movement founded in England in the 20thácentury by a group of poets: Richard Aldington, David Herbert Lawrence, Amy Lowell, Ezra Pound and John Fletcher.
The poets wrote articles on their theories, placing primary reliance on the use of verbal images as a means of poetic expression. Most of the imagists insisted on using the language of common speech, complete freedom of the subject matter.
Amy Lowell compiled three anthologies under the title "Some Imagist Poets".
In 1913 the British author F.S. Flint announces "Imagism" and declared its essential principles:
1) Use no superfluous word, adjective which does not reveal something.
2) Go in fear of abstractions. Do not tell in mediocre verse what has already been done in good prose.
3) Do not imagine that the art of poetry is any simpler than the art of music.
Imagism was to become a central theory of twentieth century poetry. The overall direction of Modernists (Imagists) was summed up by E. Pound and R. Aldington ( "Retrospect") who gave a guide for everyone who wished to understand modern verse:
1) Direct treatment of the "thing" both subjective and objective
2) No word that does not contribute to the presentation should be used
3) Composition of poetry should be a sequence of musical phrases, not metrical, any form was rejected.
Imagism is a neosymbolist theory. Unlike allegory, the imagist symbol does not confer a fixed meaning, symbol is not an ornament, it aims at immediate release of poetic energy. Archibald Macleish phrased it as "a poem should not mean but be". The poet was no longer an assimilator of the universe, trying to understand it, but an ironist, a doubting skeptic (ex. Old man with wrinkled female breasts- Eliot's "Waste Land"). Poetry lost its narrative qualities, descriptions, abstractions and acquired hard, impersonal skepticism of Modernism.
For R. Pound the key question was to how to achieve the symbolic transfiguration. His technique can be illustrated by his two line poem "In a Station of the Metro":
The apparition of these faces in the crowd;
Petals on a wet, black bough.
Impressionism, The art movement, the representatives of which sought inspiration in nature. The artists revolutionized the role of color in painting using a rich palette of most vibrant hues, often placing separate spots of pure colour on the canvas. They opened a new real colour and texture. In music this term is applied to Claude Achille Debussy. Many critics consider impressionism the final stage of romanticism.
Kabbalah, Jewish mystical teachings based on the Hebrew Scriptures. The teachings hold that one should learn about the soul's desires and then live them out, so that illness and problems will not become evident. The personal life data helps to calculate personal life tasks.
The Lake Poets (Lake School or Passive Romantics), A term applied to three English poets: William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge and Robert Southey who lived in Lake District, mountainous region (Cumberland, Westmorland and Lancashire) with sixteen lakes, very picturesque. The three poets had little relationships to one another, but each was an exponent of Romantic principles in poetry. The term was applied to them by derisive, unsympathetic critics.
Legend, A narrative based on tradition mingled with historical facts. The term was early applied to those religious traditions which were related to gospel history and which have become part of the national literature of Chrisian nations. The lives of saints and martyrs were known as "legends" because chapters were to be read (legenda) in religious houses.
Macabre, Horribly gruesome, including horrific details of death and decay. Stories having grim or ghastly atmosphere. Macabre works emphasize the details and symbols of death.
Masque, A form of dramatic writing and production, originating in the 15thácentury Italy and reaching its height in 17thácentury England. The masque is a dramatic performance in which the authors wear masks and usually represent allegorical or mythical characters. Music and dancing were added to the masque and a conventional pattern of stock characters was established in the times of Renaissance. The masque was introduced into England in 1512 during the reign of Henry VIII. English masques developed into private theatricals celebrating royal events.
The literary form was improved by Ben Johnson, John Fletcher and John Milton. After enjoying a great vogue, the masque declined rapidly in England. Many of the forms and characters were gradually incorporated into opera and the ballet.
In modern times it is rarely produced and it became essentially philosophical, a drama of personified ideas, allegorical and abstract in nature.
Miracle, A term given to Christian anonymous English verse drama of medieval times. The subject matter of miracle plays is the miracles performed by the saints or scenes from the Old and New Testaments. The plays were usually performed at Easter or other holydays. They reached their popularity in the 15tháand the 16thácenturies. They were religious in tone. The plays were given in cycles (scenes) and were acted by the trade guilds of the town. The cycles were named after the towns: the Chester, the Wakefield, the York, the Horwich and the Coventry Plays. In the miracle play were added "interludes" of comedies based on realistic situations of contemporary life, therefore, the miracle play was a realistic medieval comedy. The best known miracle play is the "Second Shepherd's Play". This is a story of the shepherds watching their flocks in the fields on the night of Christ's nativity. There is also an episode in which one of the sheep is stolen and the thief puts it in the cradle in his home pretending that the animal is his baby girl.
Modernism,áthe art and literary movement that flourished in Europe and America. It had many directions (see Imagism, Vortism, Symbolism).
Ezra Pound's, Gertrude Stein's works are characterized by a shift from the traditional literary devices of plot. The straightforward narrative was changed into a narrative in which plot is almost wholly eliminated and a free experimental style embodied radical innovations in syntax.
G. Stein uses the techniue of present, that resembles a motion pictures, films. Each picture is only a slightly different from the preceding one, presently a continuous flow of images which give the reader an illusion of lifelike continuum. She helped painters (Pablo Picasso) and authors (Sh. Anderson, E. Hemingway, Th. Wilder) to bring modern art worldwide.
Ezra Pound remained an imagist who was examining the structural interaction of politics, economics and art. This interaction is transfigured into myth. He was in quest of this artistic coherence all his life and this quest brought him to his personal tragedy rending services to fascists in Italy. He was detained after World War II, brought to the USA and declared insane. The Modern movement was firmly established in Europe with the publication of Pound's friend, James Joyce of his modernistic work "Ulysses" in 1922. At the same time appeared Rilke's "Sonnets to Orpheus", Gent's "Later Poems", D. H Lawrence's " Fantasia of the Unconscious ". The works of O.Spengler ( "Decline of the West") and T.S. Eliot ( "The Waste Land") embody the hopelessness and futility of life characteristic of the writings after World War I and introduce another trend in lirerature of "the lost generation". It was the generation that lost religious faith, the generation of total cultural decline, clinics, breakdowns, degeneration, blank faces, commerce and business humbug.
Later authors were even more determined to use such elements of Modernism as social dissent and cultural dismay.
This artistic revolution and innovative methods took root in the international melting pot- America. The Modern movement gave to American writers the possibility to reconstruct their sense of native tradition and they took the key place in the twentieth century literature.
Mysticism, The doctrine, religious in character, that immediate knowledge and experience of God, or of reality, can be achieved by direct intuition or illumination, as opposed to the conventional modes of sense perception of cognition.
Mysticism is paradoxical in that it begins with an intensity personal quest for supersensible reality, often in defiance of traditional religious authority (whether of church, creed, or Scripture) and ends with the complete negation of individuality through absorption of the self in a sense of all-pervading oneness. Mysticism finds expression in the theology of almost all Protestant denominations. The Mystics claimed they had direct communication with God and gained knowledge of spiritual things, their insight or visions brought them into spiritual union with the eternal and the supernatural.
Naturalism, The theory in literature according to which literary composition should be based on an objective, empirical presentation of natural man. Regarding human behaviour as controlled by instinct, emotion or social and economic conditions, naturalistic writers reject free will, adopting the biological determinism of Charles Darwin and in large measure the biological determinism in human relationship.
New Criticism, In the 20thácentury British thought (like in other countries) lived in an age of critical theory. There is no agreement or standards of judgment or traditional cannons. Critical debate has become highly philosophical. Literary criticism struggles without any certainties to construct a theory about itself. Criticism of the end of the 20thácentury reflects a situation of plurality without definite solutions. The number of critical positions is relative to the number of philosophical positions. Geoffrey Hartman in the argument with Modernistic formalist theories claims that new criticism should view literature as an institution with its own laws or structural principles which must be related to local and societal traditions.
The main issue debated by literary critics lies in the ontological status of meanings in a work of literature: is it single and fixed, placed by the author and available to the reader or are the meanings multiple and diverse and depend on the readers interpretation of literary symbols.
New criticism studies: 1) the role of the reader in discovering meaning (s); 2) the relation of the author to his work (biographical and psychological criticism); 3) the independence of the literary work and the world (sociological and political criticism); 4) the description of internal conflicts.
New Thought, The idealistic movement in religious and philosophical thinking which developed in the USA in the 19 century. This movement, from which evolved the theosophical and psychotherapeutic systems, known as Higher Thought, Mental Science, Metaphysical Healing and Practical Christianity. The transcendental philosophers are Amos Bronson Alcott, Ralph W. Emerson and Henry D. Thoreau. The chief tenets of New Thought are that God is omnipotent and omnipresent, the spirit is the ultimate reality, that disease is mental in origin, and that the right thinking has a healing efficacy. The therapeutic theories of New Thought received particular emphasis in the Divine Science Church. John Bovee Dods "Disease is curable by a change of belief."
Novel, Fictional prose narrative in which characters and situations typical of real life are depicted within the framework of a plot.
Although the novel has served as the instrument of instruction, of satire, of political argument and of moral edification, its primary purpose is to afford entertainment. It constitutes the third stage in the development of imaginative fiction after the epic and the romance.
The novel may be divided into four broad categories as follows:
1) The novel of incident
a) the novel of adventure
b) the biographical novel
c) the military, naval, sporting novel
2) the novel of Artifice
a) the detective novel
b) the novel of mystery with sinister, depressing atmosphere and its psychological effects upon the characters
c) the novel of the unknown dealing with the weird, the occult, the supernatural
d) the novel of suspense dealing with portrayal of characters in realistic situations which involve violence, pursuit, intrigue, espionage, gang warfare and crime
3) the novel of ordinary life
a) the novel of purpose, which points a moral or illustrates a theory of life
b) the realistic or naturalistic novel, which creates the illusion of absolute reality without comments and judgments by the author
4) psychological novel
a) the analytical novel or novel of character which investigates the motivation of a character in terms of the background and experience and treats events primarily in their relation to and effect upon character
b) the problem novel, which is concerned with individual conflicts and with problems in human relations
The term novel (novella) passed into English when Giovanni Boccaccio's tales were translated into English in ˛Ŕ˝ ¸Ó ´' ˛˝ţ˛ °│˝˛Řńň˝ ˛ °│˝˛Ř.
In the modern sense of the word the novel was developed by Samuel Richardson- ( "Pamela: or Virtue Rewarded" 1740).
The realism of the novel was also developed in "Pilgrim's Progress (1678 by John Bunyan, by Daniel Defoe in" Robinson Crusoe "(1711)), by Henry Fielding in" Joseph Andrews "(1742)," Tom Jones "(1749) , "Amelia" (1751).
The Gothic noveláis a tale of terror and the supernatural, marked by extended descriptions of ruins, wild and terrifying aspects (Marry Shelley's "Frankenstein").
The Historical novel,áthe acknowledged master of English historical fiction is Sir Walter Scott.
The social novel In the 19thácentury exponents of the new realism in fiction were Charles Dickens, William Makepeace Thackeray.
The psychological novel which occupied a dominant position in the second half of the 19thácentury in England is represented by George Eliot "The Mill on the Floss"; "George Meredith" The Ordeal of Richard Feveral "," The Egoist "," The Tragic Comedians "; David Herbert Lawrence" The White Peacock "," Sons and Lovers "; Virginia Woolf" Jacob's Room "," Mars Dalloway "; James Joyce "A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man", "Ulysses".
Parody, In ancient Greece a parody was comic imitation of a serious poem or some part. Now the term is applied to any literary work. The essence of parody is the treatment of a light theme in the style of a serious work. Chaucer described the hubbub in the widow's household in language suggestive of the fall of Troy (Nun's Priest's Tale). Parody produces a humorous effect by debasement of the original theme. Among well known works of parody are Thackary's "Burlesques", Bret Hart's "Condensed Novels", Sir Owen Seaman's "Borrowed Plumes"
Philology, The study of literary works embracing etymology, linguistic and literary history. Until the 19thácentury the term was applied to linguistics proper, a new period in the study of philology started. The subject matter of primary interest became the evolution of each language. In the 20thácentury philology became a tool in the field of historical linguistic and interpretation of texts, culture as well as language itself.
Post Modernism, After World War II the world's geopolitical map was rebuilt and the world was in confusion and chaos. The horrors of the war brought a terrible sobriety to artistic and intellectual life. This was the age of media, new communication systems, multiplication of styles. Fiction needed to become super fiction to cope with a more fictional age of new technology and ideological transformation of consciousness. The loss of the subject, of certain truths brought a sense of reality to literature, but there was little optimism, writing mostly concentrated on the darkness, disconnection of reality, sense of human evil. Literature was strongly influenced by French existentialism with its vision of the absurd.
(Jean-Paul Sartre and Albert Camus)
Post Modern literature became prominent in the late 60-s and the 70-s. Like Modernism, Post Modernism is an elusive term to describe literature of various roots in Modernism and Surrealism. It has been used to describe different trends, from the drug culture writing to the authors of the Beat Generation (V. Nabokov, Samuel Beckett).
Firstly, postmodernism was a movement in architecture that rejected the modernist, avant garde passion for the new. This synthetic approach has been taken up, in a politically radical way, by the visual musical and literary arts where collage is used to startle viewers into reflection upon the meaning of a reproduction. It is a rejection of the sovereign autonomous individual with an emphasis upon anarchic collective, anonymous experience. Collage, diversity, the mystically unrepresentable, Dionysian passion are the foci of attention. We see the dissolution of distinctions, the merging of subject and object, self and other. This is a sarcastic parody of western modernity and the individual and a radical, anarchist rejection of all attempts to define or represent the human subject.
This trend displays the tendencies of Structuralism and Deconstructionism. Post Modernism is characterized by a mixture of forms and genres, a complex mixture of deletion, distortion, and recombination. Post Modernistic novels depict nightmare, violence, dislocation and desolation in human relationship; The characters are elusive, their names and identity sometimes change; the plots are obscure, the reality is undetermined; there is no sense of completion, coherence or meaning.
The stylistic phase of Post Modernism exhausted itself by the end of the 20thácentury.
Presbyterianism, A system of church government by presbyters, or elders, thus distinguished from other forms of church government such as the episcopal and the congregational. In the presbyterian system all ecclesiastical authority is in the body of presbyters called by Christ and ordained by presbyters to rule over the church.
Calvin has been regarded as the founder of Presbyterianism and he was the first to organize the Reformed church on a presbyterian model.
Prolepsis, A flash forward in narration, anachronistic representation of something as existing before its proper or historical time.
Protestanism, A term derived from the part taken by the adherents of Luther in protesting against the decree passed by the Roman Catholic States in 1529. This decree forbade any further innovations in religion in the states that Reformation had adopted (see Reformation).
Prose, Form of literature of ordinary spoken or written language of unmetrical composition.
Psalm, Song of praise of God.
The book of psalms is a collection of hymns which was a manual of the service of Jerusalem. It consists of 150 compositions divided into 5 books. The Old Testament is known to be composed by Moses, David and Solomon. David was in fact the founder of psalmody.
Puritans,name first given to the church of England (Anglican Church) which desired a more thorough reformation of the church that was effected under Queen Elizabeth I. The Anglican church wished to see all foreign ecclesiastical authority rejected, disliked monasticism and welcomed the use of English in the services of the church, but did not desire modifications of the Protestant church. The more advanced Puritans triumphed in the person of Cromwell.
The Restoration threw Puritans into the position of dissenters. The Puritans who emigrated to America became the founders of the USA.
Pre-Raphaelites,áa term applied to a group of English painters and writers who sought to revive the purity and sincerity of early Italian painters. They published a periodical called "The Germ" in which some of Dante Gabriel Rossetti's earliest poetic work and prose study ( "Hand and Soul") first appeared. The art of Pre-Raphaelites represents a reaction against the imitative pseudo classic tendencies. A defender and the strongest of the followers was John Ruskin. This movement can be considered as a phase of Romantic movement. Its mental positive attitude to the Middle Ages is wonderfully represented in a highly coloured, imaginative "painter's poetry" of Rossetti, Morris and Swinburne.
Rationalism,áin philosophy, a system of thought based upon the reason alone. Reason is an independent source of axiomatic principles of knowledge, superior of sense perception. Rationalism is opposed to sensationalism, the theory that all ideas originate in sensation and all knowledge is obtained though the senses.
The term is used to designate the view that by means of reason alone various universal, self evident truths may be discovered or derived deductively. In this sense, rationalism is opposed to empiricism, which affirms that all knowledge is based on experience and denies the possibility of so called "a priory" ideas, or ideas originated by unaided reason.
Rationalism was stated by Rene Des Cartes, Gottfried van Leibniz, Immanuel Kant.
Realism,In philosophy, a term employed to denote the metaphysical theory of the medieval scholastic philosophers called logical realism, according to which "universals" or abstractions (man, nation, circle) have an actual and independent existence apart from particular objects. It was first enunciated by Plato (the doctrine of universal archetype or ideas). It was opposed to nominalism, The doctrine that universals are without substantive reality and only specific individual objects have real existence.
Realism is also opposed to conceptualism, Which asserts that universals though they have no actual existence in the external world, do exist as concepts or ideas in mind: It is opposed to materialism, Which makes matter the ultimate reality, and explains the fact of conciousness by physio-chemical changes in the nervous system; to naturalism, Which holds that cause-and-effect relationships are sufficient to account for all phenomena without involving theological explanations; to phenomenalism, Which states that only objects of sensory experience can be known, and that nothing exists apart from such phenomena.
Epistemologicalrealismáis applied to a doctrine that objects of sense perception have a substantive reality and an independent existence outside of the mind which perceives them. This type of realism is opposed to idealism, according to which all nature and experience are explicable in terms of ideas, or products of the intellect.
In art and literature, realism is a method of representation, characterized by uncompromising fidelity to nature and real life. As such it is closely related to naturalismáand opposed to romanticism.
The main tenets of realism are:
1) the writer must not select facts in accordance with preconceived esthetic or ethical ideals, but must set down what he sees in an impartial and objective manner.
2) fiction must follow the rigid methods of science and describe close "clinical" observations of the present or give a minute research of the retrospective observation of the past.
Reformation,áthe great 16thácentury religious revolution against the Roman Catholic Church which ended the universal supremacy of the Pope in western Christiandom and resulted in the establishment of the Protestant churches. It initiated the era of modern history.
In England the beginning of the movement toward ultimate independence from papal jurisdiction began in the 13thácentury and it greatly reduced the power of the Catholic Church to withdraw land from the control of the civil government, to make appointments to ecclesiastical offices, and to exercise judicial authority.
The English reformer John Wycliffe boldly attacked the papacy itself, striking at the sale of indulgences, pilgrimages, the worship of saints, and the moral and intellectual standards of ordained priests. To reach the common people, he translated the Bible into English, rather than Latin.
In the times of King Edward VI, the Protestant doctrines and practices were introduced into the Anglican Church. Mary Tudor attempted to restore Roman Catholicism as the state religion and during her reign many Protestants were burned at the stake.
A final settlement was reached under Queen Elizabeth in 1556. Protestantism was restored, but Roman Catholics were allowed great tolerance.
As a result, the power and wealth lost by the feudal nobility and the Catholic hierarchy passed to the middle classes and to monarchs. A new individualism and nationalism in culture and politics was developed, which opened the way to the development of modern capitalism.
National languages ??and literature were greatly advanced by the Reformation through the wide dissemination of religious literature written in the languages ??of the people.
Renaissance,áa term usually applied to the intellectual movement with its revival of letters and art which marked transition from medieval to modern history. It accomplished the overthrow of the domination of Scholasticism, of feudalism and of the Church in secular matters, replacing them by the new thought of nationalism
The movement, initiated by Petrarch and Dante, is sometimes called the Revival of learning. It led to a remarkable interest in classical Greek and Roman literature, the beginning of Humanism.
In England Wycliffe and Chaucer may be regarded as the forerunners of the Reformation and the Renaissance. The fullest English outcome of the Renaissance was the Elizabethan literature, with Spenser and Shakespeare and in philosophy Bacon as its most noted representatives.
Renaissance literature of Elizabethan Period,This period comprises the literature written in the reign of Queen Elizabeth. The main characteristic feature of the literature of this period is the influence of humanism and Italian Renaissance on the writers.
The Dutch humanist Desiderius Erasmus who taught Greek in Cambridge introduced the Classics into England. The greatest of English humanists was Sir Thomas More, famous for "Utopia" and "History of Richard the Third". Among the English poets of the time influenced by Italian writers was Sir Thomas Wyatt. He translated "Petrarch's Sonnets" into English. Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey was the first to write sonnets in English using blank verse. Surrey also translated Vergil's verse into English. Both authors published their works in "Tottel's Miscellany" and it was the first anthology of lyrics to be printed in English.
Other famous works of the period were:
1) the first essay of literary criticism in English by George Gusceiyne;
2) dramas and lyrics of Christopher Marlowe;
3) pastoral romance "Arcadia" by Sir Philipp Sidney.
The outstanding writer of poetry was Edmund Spenser, author of "Fairie Queene", The Shephards Calendar "and other works of luxuriant imagery, lyric quality and picturesque effect.
The most supreme poet and dramatist of the English Renaissance was William Shakespeare.
Minor poets of the period are John Lyly (noted for effected prose style euphuism), Robert Greene, Thomas Nash, a historian Raphael Hollinshed. The most outstanding form of literature of Elizabethan period is drama (see Drama).
Restoration, A term employed in the history of England in connection with the re-establishment of monarchy. In England it is applied to the accession of Charles II in 1660.
Romanticism, A movement in European literature, extending from the 18thácentury to the last quarter of the 19th, And characterized by the imaginative return to the Middle Ages for subject matter and inspiration, by the idealization of external nature, and by the accentuation of the elements of mystery and wonder in artistic creation.
The derivation of romanticism is to be traced to the chivalric tales and ballads of the 11tháand the 12thácenturies.
The characteristic elements of romanticism are as follows: love of the picturesque, preoccupation with the past, delight in mystery and superstition. English poetry became richer in verse forms and English prose expanded the expressive possibilities by additions to the vocabulary and by the development of a more subjective and emotional style.
Outstanding English Romantic writers are: Sir Walter Scott, William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Walter Lander, William Hazzitt, James Hunt, Thomas De Quincey, George Gordon Byron, Percy Byshe Shelly, John Keats, Thomas Carlyle, Elizabeth Browning, Alfred Tennyson, Robert Browning, Dante Gabriel Rosseti, William Morris and A. Ch. Swinburne.
Romance,áoriginally anything written in a Roman language: in the 11 - 12 th centuries old French or old English stories of various kinds; in the 15 - 16thácenturies a story generally in prose dealing with the adventures of knights.
The essentials of romance are a passion for the adventurous, the strange and the marvelous and a tendency to exaggerate the virtues and vices of human nature.
Made for the court, they were not recited, but designed to be read aloud in groups of lords and ladies.
The medieval romances gathered in cycles round great events and favourite heroes as the siege of Troy, Charlemagne, King Arthur.
The later romances in prose are connected with the history of the novel - Sir Philip Sidney's "Arcadia"; historical romances of Sir Walter Scott, adventures of Robert Louis Stevenson, stories of King Arthur by Tennyson and Swinburne, tales of William Morris in "The Earthly Paradise".
Romance was influenced by the conquest of England by the Normans. The literary writing was done in Norman French or in Latin. The two languages, Norman, French and Anglo-Saxon merged and with Anglo-Saxon elements predominating, their appeared Middle English.
The chief literary form was romance written in verse or prose. Important author of this period is Layman, a priest who wrote legends about King Arthur; a legendary history of Britain "Brut" and stories about heroes Cymberline and King Lear. The latter was then used as the source by Shakespeare.
Outstanding poems of this time were "Piers the Plowman", an allegory dealing with conflicts of the 14-th century; "The Pearl", an allegory on the death of a girl dear to the poet. "Sir Gawain and the Green Knight" is considered to be the first English romance. An important 14-th century poet was John Gower, author of "Confessio Amantis" a collection of about a hundred stories illustrating the seven deadly sins.
The English theologian John Wycliffe translated the Bible from Latin into English. By far the most outstanding poet of this period is Geoffrey Chaucer, noted for his work "The Canterbury Tales". The greatest achievement in promotion of literary works was William Caxton's first printing press in 1476. From Caxton's press came Chaucer's "Canterbury Tales", Sir Thomas Malory's "Morte d'Arthur", a collection of Arthurian legends.
Satire, One of the capital divisions of literature, mainly criticism of man and his works. The aim of the satire is to ridicule or to scorn. Roman satires are notable for dramatic improvisations in varying meters, like verse. The first name in the annals of English satire is William Langland, who in "Piers Plowman" abuses the clergy, the church orders and the law courts. Then came John Dryden, Alexander Pope, the greatest English writers in the field of classic satire. The brightest ornaments of English satire are J. Swift, R. Burns, Lord Byron, W.M. Thackeray, G.B. Shaw.
Scholasticism,a term applied to the teaching of those who devoted themselves in the medieval schools to the science, especially philosophy and theology. Scholasticism is a synthetic view of the universe, embracing the world, man, and God with their interrelations in so far as