Presentation on theme: "The Restoration and the Eighteenth Century 1660-1785 Restoration 1660 – 1700 (death of Dryden) “Augustan Age” 1700 – 1745 (death of Pope and Swift, 1744-45)"— Presentation transcript:
The Restoration and the Eighteenth Century Restoration 1660 – 1700 (death of Dryden) “Augustan Age” 1700 – 1745 (death of Pope and Swift, ) “Age of Johnson” (death of Johnson, 1784)
Increasing Literacy (60+ % of adult males by 1800?) contributes to and is affected by Periodical culture—newspapers & magazines, both topical and philosophical, and a freer and partisan press Why We Recognize 18 th Century England
The Spectator June 7th, 1711 (thank you, Wikipedia)
The Spectator 267 (1/5/1712); see NA vol C. p. 2485
The Spectator 519 (10/25/1712); see NA vol C. p. 2490
Increasing Literacy (60+ % of adult males by 1800?) contributes to and is affected by Coffeehouse Literary culture (not to mention news, business, and mail) Why We Recognize 18 th Century England
Increasing Literacy (60+ % of adult males by 1800?) contributes to and is affected by The Rise of the Novel (and the triumph of prose literature after about 1740) Why We Recognize 18 th Century England Daniel Defoe Samuel Richardson Henry Fielding Robinson Crusoe (1719)Pamela ( 1740) Shamela (1741) Moll Flanders (1722)Clarissa (1748 )Tom Jones (1749)
Increasing Literacy (60+ % of adult males by 1800?) contributes to and is affected by Improvement—gradual, to be sure—in women’s education and literary activity Why We Recognize 18 th Century England Aphra BehnLady Mary Wortley MontaguEliza Haywood ( ) ( )( )
Increasing Literacy (60+ % of adult males by 1800?) contributes to and is affected by The Rise of the Novel (and the triumph of prose literature after about 1740) Why We Recognize 18 th Century England Improvement—gradual, to be sure—in women’s education and literary activity Standardization of print conventions (capitalization, italicization, and eventually the long s) First copyright laws (Statute of Anne, 1710) Circulating libraries, 1740s
An Age of Empiricism and Experimental Science Foundation of Royal Society, 1662 Sir Isaac Newton ( ) Why We Recognize 18 th Century England An Age of Religious Accomodation rather than Dogmatism —with the occasional Evangelical Revival John Wesley ( ), founder of Methodism
An Age of Party Politics—Whigs versus Tories, under a Constitutional Monarchy Why We Recognize 18 th Century England Robert Walpole, Whig “Prime Minister,” Henry St. John, Viscount Bolinbroke Tory leader in early 18 th C.
Charles II, James II, William and Mary, Anne
George I George II George III
Why We Recognize 18 th Century England An Age of World Wars War of the Spanish Succession, (Queen Anne’s War) Seven Year’s War, (French and Indian War) Death of Wolfe Benjamin West 1770
Why We Recognize 18 th Century England An Age of Stock Booms and Busts The South Sea Bubble, 1720
Alexander Pope ( )
An engraving from The Rape of the Lock (Canto 2—Belinda sails to Hampton Court; 1714 edition) Arabella Fermor ( )
OF Man’s First Disobedience, and the Fruit Of that Forbidden Tree, whose mortal taste Brought Death into the World, and all our woe, With loss of Eden, till one greater Man Restore us, and regain the blissful Seat, Sing Heav'nly Muse, that on the secret top Of Oreb, or of Sinai, didst inspire That Shepherd, who first taught the chosen Seed, In the Beginning how the Heav'ns and Earth Rose out of Chaos: Or if Sion Hill Delight thee more, and Siloa's Brook that flow'd Fast by the Oracle of God; I thence Invoke thy aid to my adventrous Song, That with no middle flight intends to soar Above th' Aonian Mount, while it pursues Things unattempted yet in Prose or Rhyme. Paradise Lost, How many endstopped lines?
What dire Offence from am'rous Causes springs, What mighty Contests rise from trivial Things, I sing-This verse to CARYL, Muse! is due; This, ev'n Belinda may vouchsafe to view: Slight is the Subject, but not so the Praise, If She inspire, and He approve, my Lays. Say what strange Motive, Goddess! cou'd compel A well-bred Lord t'assault a gentle Belle? Oh say what stranger Cause, yet unexplor'd, Cou'd make a gentle Belle reject a Lord? In tasks so bold, can little Men engage, And in soft Bosoms, dwell such mighty Rage? Sol through white Curtains shot a tim'rous Ray, And ope'd those Eyes that must eclipse the Day: Now Lap-dogs give themselves the rouzing Shake, And sleepless Lovers, just at Twelve, awake: Rape of the Lock, How many endstopped lines?
Some Echoes of Paradise Lost in The Rape of the Lock Epic invocations Belinda’s dream Ariel’s Warning Belinda’s beauty hides her faults (if any) Baron schemes “by force or fraud” Ariel addresses his troops A sylph cut in two re-forms Descent to the underworld “Like Gods they fight, nor dread a mortal wound” Jove’s Scales
Cleanth Brooks (in The Well-Wrought Urn, 1947, p. 87) writes: “Belinda’s charm is not viewed uncritically, but the charm is real: it can survive the poet’s knowledge of how much art and artifice have gone into making up the charm.” The Norton Anthology Introduction( pp ) claims: “Pope laughs at this world, its ritualized triviality, it irrational, upper- class women and feminized men…but he also makes us aware of its beauty and charm.” These are conventional views of the poem and of Pope’s meaning, that The Rape of the Lock is an affectionate if ironical portrait of aristocratic excess, and certainly not a contemptuous, misogynist satire of feminine frivolity—that it be a mistake to read the poem as yet one more episode in the long history of antifeminism in English literature. But is that really the case? In other words, is there something serious going on in this mock-heroic poem?
“Why boast we, Glaucus! our extended reign, Where Xanthus’ streams enrich the Lycian plain, Our numerous herds that range the fruitful field, And hills where vines their purple harvest yield, Our foaming bowls with purer nectar crown’d, Our feasts enhanced with music’s sprightly sound? Why on those shores are we with joy survey’d, Admired as heroes, and as gods obey’d, Unless great acts superior merit prove, And vindicate the bounteous powers above? ’Tis ours, the dignity they give to grace; The first in valour, as the first in place; That when with wondering eyes our martial bands Behold our deeds transcending our commands, Such, they may cry, deserve the sovereign state, Whom those that envy dare not imitate! Could all our care elude the gloomy grave, Which claims no less the fearful and the brave, For lust of fame I should not vainly dare In fighting fields, nor urge thy soul to war. But since, alas! ignoble age must come, Disease, and death’s inexorable doom The life, which others pay, let us bestow, And give to fame what we to nature owe; Brave though we fall, and honour’d if we live, Or let us glory gain, or glory give!” Pope’s Iliad, — Sarpedon to his brother Glaucus Belinda’s speech---Rape of the Lock “Say, why are Beauties prais'd and honour'd most, The Wise Man's Passion, and the Vain Man's Toast? Why deck'd with all that Land and Sea afford, Why Angels call'd, and Angel-like ador'd? Why round our Coaches crowd the white-gloved Beaux, Why bows the Side-box from its inmost Rows? How vain are all these Glories, all our Pains, Unless good Sense preserve what Beauty gains: That Men may say, when we the Front-box grace, Behold the first in Virtue as in Face! Oh! if to dance all Night, and dress all Day, Charm'd the Small-pox, or chas'd old Age away; Who would not scorn what Housewife's Cares produce, Or who would learn one earthly Thing of Use? To patch, nay ogle, might become a Saint, Nor could it sure be such a Sin to paint. But since, alas! frail Beauty must decay, Curl'd or uncurl'd, since Locks will turn to grey; Since painted, or not painted, all shall fade, And she who scorns a Man, must die a Maid, What then remains but well our Pow'r to use, And keep good Humour still whate'er we lose? And trust me, dear! good Humour can prevail, When Airs, and Flights, and Screams, and Scolding fail. Beauties in vain their pretty Eyes may roll; Charms strike the Sight, but Merit wins the Soul.”