17th & 18th Century Poetry - Background Notes

death of Queen Elizabeth I

1660 – 1702
Restoration Period

Charles I and James I
protestant, antagonize, create religious controversy, clash with parliament, both believed in the divine right of kings,

Which was worse, James I or Charles I ?

James I
1603 – 1625

Charles I
1625- 1642

the roundheads
against the king

supporters of the king

oliver cromwell
leader of the commonwealth; puritan; encouraged freedom of religion.

first time women were on stage
1600 – Nel Gwen

Francis Bacon
essayist; father of modern science

metaphysical conceits
metaphors aimed at starling the reader

john donne
born catholic but abandoned his faith; womanizer (married Anne More, 16), put in prison; converted to Anglicanism.

andrew marvell
used metaphysical conciets, used carpe diem

cavalier poets
poetic theme “carpe diem”, Herrick and Lovelace

john milton
puritan writer, born catholic, wrote pamphlets

a full century, unlike the 17th century

The Restoration
restoring the monarchy and the Church of England

18th century
conviction of man’s intellectual superiority

first encyclopedia

dictionary is revised my

god as a clockwork, universe as a clock, no expectation of divine intervention.

balance, sophistication, rationalism, skepticism,

1702 – 1750
age of swift and pope, big use of satire.

1750 – 1785
Age of Johnson

1785 – 1798
Pre- Romantic

Johnathan Swift
born of english parents in ireland; Anglican minister, hated mankind but loves the individual, scathing satirist.

Alexander Pope
born catholic, mocked because of his deformity, loved mankind, perfected the heroic couplet, wrote with a lot of dry wit.

Samuel Johnson
epitome of the 18th century, essayist, poet, scholar, and critic.

The Dictionary
Samuel Johnson

Holy Sonnet 14 – Batter My Heart
John Donne

Holy Sonnet 10 – Death Be Not Proud
John Donne

Know Then Thyself
Alexander Pope

Rape of the Lock
Alexander Pope

A Modest Proposal
Jonathan Swift

To The Virgins To Make Much of Time
Robert Herrick

To Lucasta
Richard Lovelace

To Althea From Prison
Richard Lovelace

On His Having Arrived At the Age of Twenty-Three
John Milton

Meditation 17
John Donne

On His Blindness
John Milton

Death Be Not Proud
John Donne

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17th & 18th Century Poetry - Background Notes
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