Week Iv (Transitional Period)Presentation Transcript
History of English Literature Transitional Period ( 1400 – 1550)
Why called transitional?
It is called transitional period because it covered the period of two great figures in English Literature: Chaucer & Shakespeare.
Moreover, English language was transformed from Middle English to Modern English, from various dialects to standard English.
Others called this period “Imitative” since many poems produced during this period imitated Chaucer’s works. It might be not appropriate, but mostly, no one during this period could be compared with Chaucer. His power remained powerful.
John Lydgate (1370 – 1451) translator of moral & religious works admirer of Chaucer in his works he tended to follow French romance writers
Stephen Hawes (died in 1523) created many allegories. He was not a great writer but his contribution in standardizing English was big.
John Skelton ( 1460 – 1529) a satirist with short & full of mock his lyrics criticized people in the Churches & the government circle.
More about poetry…
Chaucer’s influemce in Scotland was very big. Emerge: ‘Scotish Chaucerians’: Robert Henryson ( 1430 – 1506), William Dunbar ( 1465 – 1530) & Gavin Douglas ( 1474 – 1522).
Henryson’s works: The Testament of Cresseide mistaken as Chaucer’s work for many years
Gavin Douglas the translator of Aeneid first classic work translated into English.
New situation emerged by the works of Sir Thomas Wyatt ( 1503 – 1542) & Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey ( 1517 – 1547). Both created lyrics with influence of Italian writer (Petrarch). Surrey became popular for using ‘blank verse’ poem without rhyme consisting of 5 syllables with strong stress in its each line. Blank verse is mostly used by Shakespeare & Milton.
Morte d’Arthur (1470) written by Sir Thomas Malory romance about King Arthur & his knights. It gave inspiration for many writers afterwards like Shakespeare & Tennyson.
Kitab Perjanjian Baru (The New Testament) (1525) by William Tyndale ( 1484 – 1536) the translation made the standard English more convincing and spread out not only amongst scientists but also common people. the basic of ‘The Authorized Version’ of the standard English Bible published in 1611.
It kept developing
About in the mid of 15th century new kind of drama emerged ‘Moralities’, different from Miracles & Mysteries not showing quotations from Bible or about Saints but showing figures who became abstractions, e.g. Good deeds, Crime, Man-Kind and so on. But entertaining aspect was not neglected.
Morality, e.g. : Everyman by unknown author by the end of 15th century
More about drama….
Interludes short drama religious but just for entertaining, but moralities of the writer remained. Interludes was mostly performed for rich people.
E.g.: Fulgens & Lucres by Henry Medwall
By the end of this period Renaissance period emerged.
Classic Greek’s & Roman’s influence was accepted.
First English comedy: Ralph Roister Doister ( 1550) by Nicolas Udall imitating classic model.