Some Scatterred Works

Posted on September 27, 2010


How was the development of English Language? (Unfinished)
In the beginning of Anno Domini, Britain population was Celtics. They used Celtic language which was very different from Modern English. In 50 AD, Rome controlled Britain and settled civilizations. Then in 410 Roman troops retreated forever. Soon the Jutes, Angles, and Saxon settled in Britain. Anglo-Saxon became the language used in Britain. It was the derivation of German. The written literature era has begun. Literary genre was only in form of poetry until Northrumbia destroyed by Scandinavians. The pure Anglo-Saxon poetry was gone, but King Alfred finally returned the English literature and wrote “Anglo-Saxon Chronicle”. It is the early English prose.
In 1066, Edward the Confessor died. Unfortunately, he had no successor. Then Battle of Hastings occurred between Harold II (Saxon King of England) and William (Duke of Normandy). William I won the war and claimed the Britain throne. The most important impact from this coronation was the arrival of Normandy aristocrats. It was because most of English Royal Families died in the war. They refused to use English instead of French. Therefore, created Anglo-Normandic dialects used by ordinary people. Until 13th Century, the Britannian noblemen were able to settle in Britain again. The use of English was recovered but it lost its former form and evolved into Middle English. Many original words were gone, replaced by French.
Stephen Hawes, lived in Transitional Period, created many allegories. His contribution in standardizing English was big.
The Renaissance contributed simpler English Language. With the help of Johannes Guttenberg for inventing printing machine, Renaissance literary works were spreading rapidly. The characteristics of Renaissance itself also developed English. The 15th Century witnessed three outstanding developments; the rise of London English, the invention of printing machine, and the spread of new learning. English first printing was conducted by William Caxton at Westminster, 1476. Renaissance scholars borrowed Latin, Latin-French, Greek, and Greek-Latin words. John Wycliff translation on Bible also standardized the Early Modern English.
William Tyndale, a great prosaist, translated New Testament and was the base of “Authorized Version”. King James Bible made the Authorized Version in 1611.
Samuel Johnson a.k.a. literature dictator known as the first compiler of the most complete English Dictionary: A Dictionary of the English Language (1755). He took Philip Sydney’s as his criteria. The first dictionary itself showed how English Language was standardized.
Augustan Period
What is the influence of Glorious Revolution to the birth of Newspapers?
Glorious Revolution, as known as Revolution of 1688 and Bloodless Revolution, was occurred in 1688-1689. At that time, James II was replaced by William III and his wife Mary II. The Conventional Parliament meeting at January 22, 1689 considered James II’s flight as an abdication. The Convention Parliament itself turned to a proper Parliament and declared Bill of Rights. The revolution established Parliament as the ruling power of England.
Differs from Monarch, Parliament did not consider the King and Queen’s word as a divine’s word anymore. The Party members needed to inform their plans before making parliamentary decisions. As a result, The Daily Courant appeared in 1702 to link the Parliament’s current issues and public’s opinions. The Tattler and The Spectator followed it later on.

Why was satire grown very fast during Augustan Period?
A flashback to the previous periods is needed to analyze this phenomenon. At the Elizabethan Period, the atmosphere of English Literature was full of self-exploration due to the Renaissance. Humans were willing to invent new things tended to secularism. As a result, many literary works were produced. Famous author such as William Shakespeare, Edmund Spenser, Christopher Marlowe, Phillip Sydney, etc. have freedom to express their ideas. However, things went upside down during Puritan Period. Oliver Cromwell who was on the throne prohibited drama, considering it immoral. Although it was prohibited, the underground movement kept criticizing the government. It is the forthcoming of satire.
Restoration Period brought France values, plus freedom after Puritan Period, created excessive immorality. This immorality affected patron society and rapidly replaced people’s Puritanism. John Dryden raised satire as one of his literary criticism “Discourse on Satire”, also “Essay of Dramatic Poetry”. Literary works were mostly concerned to criticize the corrupted government.
This satire then found on Augustan Period as a radical, satirical way to criticize the corrupted government. Augustan characteristics which were rational, intellectual, and uniformity, created “Gulliver’s Travels” by Jonathan Swift.

Transitional Period to Romanticism
What is the impact of English literary works due to the development of English Language?
From period to period, English writers tended to write literary works using simpler English language. Because literary works can affect the society, people using simpler English language together with the development in English literature.
What are the characteristics of Transitional Period to Romanticism? Give example from the differences between this period and Augustan Period!
In the Transitional Period to Romanticism, English writers tended to have two different beliefs about the theme of literary works.  Some writers want to get rid of former form of literary work, e.g. heroic couplet. On the other hand, there were writers who still want to hold earlier norms. The difference between the previous period, Augustan period, is that the inspiration came from the nature. In the Augustan, the nature was only a background of their literary works. In Transtional period to Romanticism, nature became one of the main ideas of the works. Moreover, their works was dedicated to middle-class people whereas in Augustan they are tended to be the upper-class oriented.
The materials have been brought from the local culture. This indicates an interest in local’s past and dialects. China, Persia, and Arab also influence English writers at that time.

Romanticism Period
How was the role of female writers during Romanticism Period?
A lot of female writers became famous and important, for example, Jane Austen. She was excellent in depicting the characterisation of the characters in her novels. Her works characteristics: using simple, clear and fluent language, little humour, light satirical and using the principle of common sense. Her works: Northanger Abbey, Pride and Prejudice, Sense and Sensibility, Emma, Persuasion and Mansfield Park. Other writers were Maria Edgeworth (1776 – 1849) and Susan Ferrier (1782 – 1854).
Becoming a prose writer or novelist was the most appropriate job for women after being a housewife.
Why drama experienced a drawback in Romanticism Period?
Novel was considered to be the most appropriate literary works to appreciate. It is because the social value at that time believes that house is the centre of all live aspects. The dominant English society was middle-class people. They did not appreciate drama as art. So, drama was no longer developed.

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