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THE AUGUSTAN AGE
A.D 1702-1714
1714-1760
1



Emperor Augustus
Oliver Goldsmith to
draw a parallel
between the golden
age of latin culture
under emperor
Augustus a...


The new Augustan Age becomes identified with the
reign of Queen Anne (1702-14), though the spirit of
the age extends we...


The Enlightenment contrasts with the darkness of irrationality of
the Middle Age.



Belief in progress, the power of ...
GEORGE I (1714-1727)
When Queen Anne died without an heir,
the parliament called the Duke of
Hanover=> his mother was the
...
GEORGE II (1727-1760)
His reign was marked by the presence and
influence of Sir Horace Walpole. This one
was a Whig suppor...
GEORGE III (1760-1801)
His reign was marked by a series of
military conflicts, the American War of
Independence(1776) and ...
THE SOCIAL SITUATION


Britain was still a rural country and the life
expectancy was low.



Middle Class or Middle Sort...
LIFE DURING THE AUGUSTAN AGE
A new reading public: the middle class.
Connected to it are:
The rise of Journalism & The ris...
EARLY NEWSPAPERS & MAGAZINES
Daily Courant in 1702, The Tatler (1709)
and The Spectator (1711)
 Daily Courant  also goss...
Augustan authors

11


Richard Steele
 Tatler



Richard Steele with frequent contributions from
his friend Joseph Addison, turns the relaxe...
Alexander Pope
 The Augustan Age poetry was dominated by Pope.
 Became a master in the use of rhymed heroic
couplets (=v...
THE RAPE OF THE LOCK


A nobleman cut a lock of hair from the head of Lady
Arabella Fermor. This caused an argument
betwe...


Jonathan Swift first makes his mark in 1704 with:
 The Battle of the Books
 A Tale of a Tub

 These

two tracts, res...
DRAMA


It was infertile period for drama

John Gay (1685 – 1731): The
Beggar’s Opera (1728): satire
towards Italian oper...
THE RISE OF THE NOVEL
The word comes from the Italian “novella” = a long
prose narrative.
 Period of experimentation → no...
DE-FOE AND THE REALIST NOVEL


Defoe‟s works are written in the form of fictional
autobiography or diary to make them mor...
RONINSON CRUSOE
Inspired by the real story of Alxander Selkirk
 Divided into 3 sections
 Hero of the middle class → valu...
DANIEL DE-FOE








Born into a middle class family of Dissenters.
Educated at a Dissenting Academy.
Merchant and ...
SWIFT AND
FANTASTIC

THE

LITERATURE

OF

THE



Gulliver’s Travels



He used to criticize the political situation of t...
Samuel Johnson or Dr Johnson (1709 – 1784) 
known as the „literature dictator‟  known from The
Life of Johnson (biograph...
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The Augustan Age

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The Augustan Age

  1. 1. THE AUGUSTAN AGE A.D 1702-1714 1714-1760 1
  2. 2.   Emperor Augustus Oliver Goldsmith to draw a parallel between the golden age of latin culture under emperor Augustus and the reign of Queen Ann 2
  3. 3.  The new Augustan Age becomes identified with the reign of Queen Anne (1702-14), though the spirit of the age extends well beyond her death.  Augustan Age was characterized by the spirit of the Enlightenment. John Locke Age of Reason   3
  4. 4.  The Enlightenment contrasts with the darkness of irrationality of the Middle Age.  Belief in progress, the power of reason.  For the Enlightenment thinkers all men are equal in respect of their rationality and the tolerance and individual liberty must be granted by the law. Enlightenment thinking that tended to atheism was the bases of French Revolution.  During the Augustan Age the wealth of the State, based on trade with the colonies, increased dramatically and Britain’s position as a world power was confirmed by the victory in the Seven Years’ War against France, for the supremacy in the colonies. 4
  5. 5. GEORGE I (1714-1727) When Queen Anne died without an heir, the parliament called the Duke of Hanover=> his mother was the granddaughter of king James I He became King with the title George I He spoke no English (only German) and had to rely on the elected MPs to govern. Most MPs were Whigs=> they were the most powerful The Tories instead wanted the descendant of King James II to govern England. They were called Jacobites => Jacobus=James in Latin (they attempted two rebellions, 1715 and 1745, without success) 5
  6. 6. GEORGE II (1727-1760) His reign was marked by the presence and influence of Sir Horace Walpole. This one was a Whig supporter, who became the First Prime Minister and remained in power for more than 20 years. The King gave Walpole the house at 10 Downing Street. Walpole managed to govern England well and peacefully, but after 1726 his government was accused of corruption. He lost the election in 1742 and resigned his office. 6
  7. 7. GEORGE III (1760-1801) His reign was marked by a series of military conflicts, the American War of Independence(1776) and the French Revolution. He suffered from mental illnesses later in his life. During his reign the Pitt family governed as Prime Ministers: William Pitt the Elder (1766-68) and William Pitt the Younger (1783-1801). 7
  8. 8. THE SOCIAL SITUATION  Britain was still a rural country and the life expectancy was low.  Middle Class or Middle Sort  Rise of a new working class as a result of a series of Enclosure Acts. 8
  9. 9. LIFE DURING THE AUGUSTAN AGE A new reading public: the middle class. Connected to it are: The rise of Journalism & The rise of the Novel. As a consequence of the advent of coffee from the colonies, clubs and coffee houses flourished in towns. They were intellectual and social centres for debates. Satire became the major output. 9
  10. 10. EARLY NEWSPAPERS & MAGAZINES Daily Courant in 1702, The Tatler (1709) and The Spectator (1711)  Daily Courant  also gossips  2 years only  The Tatler (=Il chiacchierone)  mainly essays.  The Spectator  politics, literature art.  The editors: Joseph Addison & Richard Steele. Aimed at middle class readers! Circulated mainly in the new coffee-houses of the big cities.  10
  11. 11. Augustan authors 11
  12. 12.  Richard Steele  Tatler  Richard Steele with frequent contributions from his friend Joseph Addison, turns the relaxed and informal essay into a new journalistic art form. In 1711 Steele and Addison replace the Tatler with the daily Spectator.  12
  13. 13. Alexander Pope  The Augustan Age poetry was dominated by Pope.  Became a master in the use of rhymed heroic couplets (=verso alessandrino) for the purposes of satire.  Wide culture based on the study of the classics.  Founded the Scriblerus Club with Swift and Gay.  In 1711 he shows his paces with the brilliant Essay on Criticism + the translation of Homer’s epic poems.  Mock –heroic Masterpiece: The Rape of the Lock(1714)  = speaks of a trivial matter in the language and style usually reserved for epic poems → the effect is comical. 13
  14. 14. THE RAPE OF THE LOCK  A nobleman cut a lock of hair from the head of Lady Arabella Fermor. This caused an argument between the two respective families and Pope, who was a friend of both of them wrote this poem to make them laugh and reconcile. 14
  15. 15.  Jonathan Swift first makes his mark in 1704 with:  The Battle of the Books  A Tale of a Tub  These two tracts, respectively about literary theory and religious discord, reveal that there is a new prose writer on the scene with lethal satirical powers. 15
  16. 16. DRAMA  It was infertile period for drama John Gay (1685 – 1731): The Beggar’s Opera (1728): satire towards Italian opera  16
  17. 17. THE RISE OF THE NOVEL The word comes from the Italian “novella” = a long prose narrative.  Period of experimentation → no dominant form  I. II. III. IV. V. Defoe and the Realist Novel Swift and the Literature of the Fantastic Richardson and the Sentimental Novel/ Epistolary Novel Fielding and the Comic Novel Sterne and the Experimental Novel. 17
  18. 18. DE-FOE AND THE REALIST NOVEL  Defoe‟s works are written in the form of fictional autobiography or diary to make them more realistic.  The protagonist must struggle to overcome a series of misfortunes, using only his/her phisical or mental resources.  No psychological development of characters. 18
  19. 19. RONINSON CRUSOE Inspired by the real story of Alxander Selkirk  Divided into 3 sections  Hero of the middle class → values of hard work, self improvement, belief in God’s providence.  Interpreted as a religious allegory → redemption from sins through hard work  Economic Allegory of merchant capitalism  Imperialist allegory (more recently) → of the British Colonizer who is convinced of hi superiority over the savage.  19
  20. 20. DANIEL DE-FOE       Born into a middle class family of Dissenters. Educated at a Dissenting Academy. Merchant and interest in politics. Journalist (correspondent)  contribution to contemporary newspaper: editorial & interview 1719 Robinson Crusoe  a sailorman who was deserted at an uninhabited island in the Pacific Ocean 1722 Moll Flanders → poor girl seduced by a rich man, forced to become a prostitute and a thief, managesi n the end to lead a respectable life, repenting for her sins.. 20
  21. 21. SWIFT AND FANTASTIC THE LITERATURE OF THE  Gulliver’s Travels  He used to criticize the political situation of the time.  Yet, first regarded as a children‟s story and only later appreciated for its satirical value.  About the experience of dr. Lemuel Gulliver, a ship doctor, in the dream countries of Liliput, Brobdingnag, Laputa and Houyhnhnm.  written in fluent, clean & simple language  enforced the realism. 21
  22. 22. Samuel Johnson or Dr Johnson (1709 – 1784)  known as the „literature dictator‟  known from The Life of Johnson (biography), written by one of his followers James Boswell.  Besides his eccentric characteristics, he was also known as the first compiler of the most complete English dictionary: A Dictionary of the English Language (1755)  22

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