Characteristics of Victorian Literature | Victorian Literature | Victorian Era


characteristics of victorian literature

Aug 25,  · I think what gives them a unique twist in Victorian literature is that Victorian characters have a strong sense of their place in society. In modern books, everything is either right for everyone or wrong for everyone. In Victorian literature, there was not one universal set of societal rules. The Victorian era in literature is marked by a shift in the attitude of poets from relaxed to realism-oriented, as well as a shift in popularity from poetry to novels. Novels were granted the title of an art form, and both poems and novels confronted social conflict. It was the best of times for the serialized novel; it was the worst of times for satire. Yep, that's the Victorian era for you. Named for a spiffy royal lady (you guessed it: Queen Victoria), this period lasted sixty-four years—not too long in the grand scheme of things, but that didn't stop.

Victorian Era Literature Characteristics | English Summary

Victorian literature is literature, mainly written in English, during the reign of Queen Victoria — the Victorian era. It was preceded by Romanticism and followed by the Edwardian era — While in the preceding Romantic periodpoetry had been the dominant genre, it was the novel that was most important in the Victorian period. Charles Dickens — dominated the first part of Victoria's reign: his first novelThe Pickwick Paperswas published inand his last Our Mutual Friend between —5.

A major later novel was George Eliot 's —80 Middlemarchwhile the major novelist of the later part of Queen Victoria's reign was Thomas Hardy —whose first novel, characteristics of victorian literature, Under the Greenwood Treecharacteristics of victorian literature, appeared in and his last, Jude the Obscurein Robert Browning —89 and Alfred Tennyson —92 were Victorian England's most famous poets, characteristics of victorian literature, though more recent taste has tended to prefer the poetry of Thomas Hardy, who, though he wrote poetry throughout his life, did not publish a collection untilas well as that of Gerard Manley Hopkins —89whose poetry was published posthumously in Algernon Charles Swinburne — is also considered an important literary figure of the period, especially his poems and critical writings.

Early poetry of W. Yeats was also published in Victoria's reign, characteristics of victorian literature. With regard to the theatre it was not until the last decades of the nineteenth century that any significant works were produced. Charles Dickens is the most famous Victorian novelist. Extraordinarily popular in his day with his characters taking on a life of their own beyond the page; Dickens is still one of the most popular and read authors of the world.

His first novel, The Pickwick Papers —37 written when he was twenty-five, was an overnight success, and all his subsequent works sold extremely well. The comedy of his first novel has a satirical edge and this pervades his writing, characteristics of victorian literature.

Dickens worked diligently and prolifically to produce the entertaining writing that the public wanted, but also to characteristics of victorian literature commentary on social problems and the plight of the poor and oppressed. There is a gradual trend in his fiction towards darker themes characteristics of victorian literature mirrors a tendency in much of the writing of the 19th century. William Thackeray was Dickens' great rival in the first half of Queen Victoria's reign, characteristics of victorian literature.

With a similar style but a slightly more detached, acerbic and barbed satirical view of his characters, he also tended to depict a more middle class society than Dickens did. He is best known for his novel Vanity Fairsubtitled A Novel characteristics of victorian literature a Herowhich is an example of a form popular in Victorian literature: a historical novel in which recent history is depicted.

Wuthering Heights characteristics of victorian literature, Emily's only work, is an example of Gothic Romanticism from a woman's point of view, which examines class, myth, and gender. Jane Eyreby her sister Charlotte, is another major nineteenth century novel that has gothic themes, characteristics of victorian literature. Anne's second novel The Tenant of Wildfell Hallwritten in realistic rather than romantic style, is mainly considered to be the first sustained feminist novel.

In the later decades of the Victorian era Thomas Hardy was the most important novelist. Other significant novelists of this era were Elizabeth Gaskell —Anthony Trollope —George Meredith —and George Gissing — Elizabeth Barrett Browning and Robert Browning conducted their love affair through verse and produced many tender and passionate poems. Both Matthew Arnold and Gerard Manley Hopkins wrote poems which sit somewhere in between the exultation of nature of the romantic Poetry and the Georgian Poetry of the early 20th century.

However Hopkins's poetry was not published until Arnold's works anticipate some of the themes of these later poets, while Hopkins drew inspiration from verse forms of Old English poetry such as Beowulf. The reclaiming of the past was a major part of Victorian literature with an interest in both classical literature but also the medieval literature of England. The Victorians loved the heroic, chivalrous stories of knights of old and they hoped to regain some of that noble, courtly behaviour and impress it upon the people both at home and in the wider empire.

The best example of this is Alfred Tennyson 's Idylls of the Kingwhich blended the stories of King Arthurcharacteristics of victorian literature, particularly those by Thomas Malorywith contemporary concerns and ideas. The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood also drew on myth and folklore for their art, with Dante Gabriel Rossetti contemporaneously regarded as the chief poet amongst them, although his sister Christina is now held by scholars to be a stronger poet. The first play to achieve consecutive performances was the London comedy Our Boys by H.

Byronopening in Its astonishing new record of 1, performances was bested in by Charley's Aunt by Brandon Characteristics of victorian literature. Gilbertcharacteristics of victorian literature, Oscar Wilde became the leading poet and dramatist of the late Victorian period.

Wilde's comic masterpiece, The Characteristics of victorian literature of Being Earnestwas the greatest of the plays in which he held an ironic mirror to the aristocracy while displaying virtuosic mastery of wit and paradoxical wisdom. It has remained extremely popular.

The Victorians are credited with 'inventing childhood', partly via their efforts to stop child labour and the introduction of compulsory education. As children began to be able to read, literature for young people became a growth industry, with not only established writers producing works for children such as Dickens' A Child's History of England but also a new group of dedicated children's authors.

Writers like Lewis CarrollR. Ballantyne and Anna Sewell wrote mainly for children, although they had an adult following. Other authors such as Anthony Hope and Robert Louis Stevenson wrote mainly for adults, but their adventure novels are now generally classified as for children.

Other genres include nonsense versepoetry which required a childlike interest e. Lewis Carroll. Compiling folk tales by many authors with different topics made characteristics of victorian literature possible for children to read characteristics of victorian literature by and about lots of different things that interested them. There were different types of books and magazines written for boys and girls. Girls' stories tended to be domestic and to focus on family life, whereas boys' stories were more about adventures.

The Victorian era was an important time for the development of science and the Victorians had a mission to describe and classify the entire natural world. Much of this writing does not rise to the level of being regarded as literature but one book in particular, Charles Darwin 's On the Origin of Speciesremains famous. The theory of evolution contained within the work challenged many of the ideas the Victorians had about themselves and their place in the world.

Although it took a long time to be widely accepted, it would dramatically change subsequent thought and literature, characteristics of victorian literature. Much of the work of popularizing Darwin's theories was done by his younger contemporary Thomas Henry Huxleywho wrote widely on the subject. A number of other non-fiction works of the era made their mark on the literature of the period.

The philosophical writings of John Stuart Mill covered logiceconomics, liberty and utilitarianism. The writings of Thomas Babington Macaulay on English history helped codify the Whig narrative that dominated the historiography for many years. John Ruskin wrote a number of highly influential works on art and the history of art and championed such contemporary figures as J. Turner and the Pre-Raphaelites. A number of monumental reference works were published in this era, most notably the Oxford English Dictionary which would eventually become the most important historical dictionary of the English language.

The old Gothic tales that came out of the late 19th century are the first examples of the genre of fantastic fiction. These tales often centred on larger-than-life characters such as Sherlock Holmesfamous detective of the times, Sexton BlakePhileas Foggand other fictional characters of the era, such as DraculaEdward HydeThe Invisible Manand many other fictional characters who often had exotic enemies to foil.

Spanning the 18th and 19th centuries, there was a particular type of story-writing known as gothic. Gothic characteristics of victorian literature combines romance and horror in attempt to thrill and terrify the reader. Possible features in a gothic novel are foreign monsters, ghosts, curses, hidden rooms and witchcraft. Gothic tales usually take place in locations such as castles, monasteries, and cemeteries, although the gothic monsters sometimes cross over into the real world, making appearances in cities such as London.

Writers from the United States and the British colonies of Australia, New Zealand and Canada characteristics of victorian literature influenced by the literature of Britain and are often classed as a part of Victorian literature, although they were gradually developing their own distinctive voices. The problem with the classification of "Victorian literature" is the great difference between the early works of the period and the later works which had more in common with the writers of the Edwardian period and many writers straddle this divide.

WellsBram StokerH. Rider HaggardJerome K. Jerome and Joseph Conrad all wrote some of their important works during Victoria's reign but the sensibility of their writing is frequently regarded as Edwardian. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article needs additional citations for verification. Please help improve this article by adding citations to reliable sources. Unsourced material may be challenged and removed. Main article: English novel. Main article: English poetry.

See also: Nature writing, characteristics of victorian literature. Children's literature portal. Penguin Books. Retrieved 15 September Oxford University Press. Gale Cengage. Retrieved 16 June Children's Books in the Victorian Era. International Library of Children's Literature. The Gale Group, Inc. Victorian High Noon: English Literature in Baltimore: Johns Hopkins U. Retrieved 7 April English literature. Categories : Victorian culture English-language literature.

Hidden categories: EngvarB from November Use dmy dates from November Articles needing additional references from March All articles needing additional references. Namespaces Article Talk. Views Read Edit View history. By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. Blackmore —


Victorian Literature Characteristics


characteristics of victorian literature


Aug 25,  · I think what gives them a unique twist in Victorian literature is that Victorian characters have a strong sense of their place in society. In modern books, everything is either right for everyone or wrong for everyone. In Victorian literature, there was not one universal set of societal rules. Nov 06,  · As we explore more Victorian literature, and really all of literature, it's important to keep in mind that the characteristics that I've talked about are things that people have observed in. Victorian literature is literature, mainly written in English, during the reign of Queen Victoria (–) (the Victorian era).It was preceded by Romanticism and followed by the Edwardian era (–).. While in the preceding Romantic period, poetry had been the dominant genre, it was the novel that was most important in the Victorian period.