Download The Cambridge Companion to Fiction in the Romantic Period by Richard Maxwell PDF

By Richard Maxwell

Whereas poetry has been the style so much heavily linked to the Romantic interval, the unconventional of the overdue eighteenth and early 19th centuries has attracted many extra readers and scholars lately. Its canon has been widened to incorporate much less popular authors along Jane Austen, Walter Scott, Maria Edgeworth and Thomas Love Peacock. during the last iteration, specially, a outstanding diversity of renowned works from the interval were re-discovered and reread intensively. This significant other deals an summary of British fiction written among approximately the mid-1760s and the early 1830s and is a perfect advisor to the foremost authors, historic and cultural contexts, and later serious reception. The members to this quantity signify the main up to date instructions in scholarship, charting the ways that the period's social, political and highbrow redefinitions created new fictional topics, types and audiences.

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Alongside the eighteenth-century novels, amongst the largest group of prose texts to be reprinted as old canon classics were collections of essays such as The Spectator and The Tatler with an explicit moral message. A large body of conduct literature, much of it reprinted seventeenth- and early eighteenth-century texts, gave advice on how to lead a pious life, offered comfort in tribulation, illness, and bereavement, and guided readers on how to prepare for death. Many old canon conduct books composed later in the eighteenth century offered advice on reading, as did the many conduct books first composed and published in the Romantic period.

The world I found . . ’’3 The volumes, normally small and portable, could be read outside, important to those who had to snatch their reading opportunities, but could also be carried in a pocket or a handbag, an important consideration for some constituencies, such as women of the higher income classes, whose reading normally occurred in the semi-public space of the drawing room. As John Clare remembered of his childhood, ‘‘I read the old novels and poems again and again . . ’’4 Even in the cheapest editions, the out-of-copyright novels normally contained at least one illustration, usually the work of some notable modern artist, that was engraved in copper or woodcut.

Most books published in the Romantic period were manufactured entirely by hand, with the use of hand-held tools, by skilled men who had served a long apprenticeship in their trade. The types, the paper, the ink, the press, the binding were all manufactured without the aid of machinery or of mechanical power. The printers, who were legally liable for the lawfulness of the texts to be printed, sometimes asked for changes. They were also the final authority on spelling and punctuation, and often made changes without the author’s consent.

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