Puritan Literature in New England - Greer Middle College || Building

Puritans known as the Separatists split from
the Church of England over disagreements
and came to New England for religious
 Allegiance to God/the group, not the king
Strived to be pure in action, thought and
deed and wanted to simplify Church
Self-reliance- rely on yourself even if it seems
 Industriousness- work instead of pleasure 
“Puritan work ethic”
 Temperance- moderation
 Simplicity- simplify everything
 Education- many Puritans believed in public
 Religion- Bible interpreted literally; everything that
happens is God’s will; religion dominates other
institutions (education/politics/society)
Bible= a model
Diaries, histories, and sermons
Mostly religious
“Sinners in the Hands of an
Angry God”= 1741 sermon
Extremist pastor– called
members of congregation out
by name for sin
Leader of the First Great
 Religious revival
 Emphasized “terrors of the law”
& unmerited grace
Diction- word choice affects the tone
▪ Ex: formal, informal, colloquial, full of slang, poetic, plain,
abstract, concrete, etc.
A. Write down five strong word choices and the effects
they have on the reader
Imagery- the use of language to evoke a picture
of a person, thing, place, or experience
▪ Appeals to the senses
B. List three major images in the sermon and their
Metaphor- figure of speech that makes a
comparison between two unlike things
without like, as, etc.
C. List two main metaphors from the sermon and
explain how they are used
“Here Follow Some Verses Upon
the Burning of our House” 1666
America’s first poet- came to
America at 18
Husband was governor of
Massachusetts Bay Colony
This poem is actually a diary
Puritan characteristics: Diary
form, biblical metaphors, selfexamination
Inversion- a reversal of the normal English
word order in a sentence or phrase, usually for
poetic effect (i.e. rhyme)
 (l. 2) For sorrow near I did not look
▪ I did not look near for sorrow OR I did not look for sorrow near
 (ll. 5-6) That fearful sound of “Fire!” “Fire!”/ Let no
man know is my desire.
▪ My desire is let no man know the fearful sound of “Fire!” and
(l. 27) My pleasant things in ashes lie
(l. 28) And them behold no more shall I
(ll. 21-24) When by the ruins oft I past/ My
sorrowing eyes aside did cast/ and here and
there the places spy/ Where oft I sat and long
did lie
What points does the speaker make to
herself in her internal dialogue?
List three examples of inversion and then
write them in their “noninverted” forms.
Is there a turning point to the poem? If so,
where is it and what changes?
What is the theme of the poem?