The Restoration and the Eighteenth Century: 1660-1800

The Restoration and the
Eighteenth Century: 1660-1800
(LITERATURE 563-571)
Oliver Cromwell (1599-1658)
•Helped overthrow/execute
Charles I
•Established Commonwealth
•“Lord Protector”
Charles II (1630-1685)
•Son of executed Charles I
•Returned from France in 1660
•No legitimate heirs
The Reign of Charles
 Sophisticated Society
 Emulated
sophisticated French society
 Patron of the arts and sciences
 Restoration Politics
 Initially
supported by Parliament
 Weathered Great Plague of 1665 and Great Fire
on London
 Political rivalries resurface: Tories and Whigs
Royalty and the People
 William & Mary, 1688
 Political
and religious conflict under James II
 Glorious Revolution  Parliament over divine
rights of King  William and Mary take the
 Act of Settlement  bars Catholics from English
 Anne, 1702
 Unites England and Scotland Great Britain
 Last Stuart monarch
Restoration/18th Century Monarchs
James II (1685-1688)
Anne (1702-1714)
William and Mary (16891702)
George I (1714-1727)
Royalty and the People
 The House of Hanover
George I
 German speaking; supported by Whigs
 George II
 Named Robert Walpole 1st Prime Minister
 Victory over France in 7 Years War (acq. French
 George III
 Suffered mental illness that affected political
 Lost American colonies
Restoration/18th Century Monarchs
George II (1727-1760)
George IV (1820-1830)
George III (1760-1820)
William IV (1830-1837)
The Age of Reason
 Also known as The Enlightenment
 Used
scientific reasoning to understand the
world, including natural events
 Scientific Method
 Developed by Sir Isaac Newton
 Suggested universe operated on scientific
 Inspired other scientists to search for these
principles in other areas of study
The Age of Reason
 Enlightened Philosophies
 Applied Newtonian principles to human nature (politics,
economics, society)
 John Locke
Encouraged people to use logic to rid themselves of unjust authority
 Asserted the right of citizens to revolt against unfair governments
 Rejected divine right of kings
 Living Well
 Improved quality of life
Inoculations & vaccinations
 Coffeehouses & salons
Social Observers
 Growing middle class demands middlebrow
literature, reflecting concerns of everyday life
 Popularity of journalism: fact & opinions
 Birth of the novel
Modeled after nonfiction forms
 Diaries, journals, letters
Satirical Voices
 Neoclassicism (Augustan Age)
 1st
half of 18th Century
 Modeled ancient Greek and Roman classics
 Stressed balance, order, logic, emotional
 Used satire to point out flaws in society needing
Horatian – gentle, playful, sympathetic
Juvenalian – dark, biting, sarcastic
Restoration comedies of manners
“For fools rush in where
angels fear to tread.”
Alexander Pope
“I never wonder to see men
wicked, but I often wonder
to see them not ashamed.”
Jonathan Swift
Text Analysis: Satire
 A literary technique in which behaviors or
institutions are ridiculed for the purpose of
improving society
 Developed in ancient Greece and Roman
 18th Century = “golden age of satire”
 View of 18th century satirists:
“guardians of the culture” – sought to protect their highly
developed civilization from hypocrisy, arrogance, greed,
vanity, stupidity
“our physician, not our enemy”
Characteristics of Satire
 Exposes an oddity or problem in an imaginative,
often humorous way
 Targets social and political problems, usually.
 Satirical techniques
Exaggeration / hyperbole
 Types
 Horatian – playfully amusing; urbane (sophisticated)
 Juvenalian – dark, sarcastic (biting)
Strategies for Reading Satire
 Determine the object of the satire
 Infer what the satirist believes is right and proper
 Watch for irony, which often points of the object of
 Pay attention to anything that is exaggerated or
 Evaluate the style and tone:
Horatian /playful and sympathetic
Juvenalian /bitter and critical
The Age of Johnson
 2nd half of 18th Century
 Tribute to Samuel Johnson
 Influential
literary figure
 Nonfiction flourished
 Style: clear, accurate, eloquent, persuasive
 Poetry enters a transitional phase
 Style: simpler, freer lyrics on subjects close to
human heart
 Precursors to Romanticism
The Rise of Women
 Excluded from universities and places of
intellectual discussion
 Formed salons (private gatherings for
philosophical discourse)
 “Bluestockings”
 Women writers often published their own works.
 Some women openly challenged the role of women
in society.