As much as possible, I have attempted to define "importance" both in terms of literary canonicity and in terms of historical change. Thus, although the reading includes an in depth study of several major authors particularly Austen and DickensI have organized the major field primarily around landmarks in the history of literary genres. The list will allow me to trace the development of the following genres:
Chaucer reciting Troilus and Criseyde: They were marvel-filled adventuresoften of a knight-errant with heroic qualities, who undertakes a questyet it is "the emphasis on heterosexual love and courtly manners distinguishes it from the chanson de geste and other kinds of epicwhich involve heroism.
During the early 13th century, romances were increasingly written as prose. The shift from verse to prose dates from the early 13th century. The Prose Lancelot or Vulgate Cycle includes passages from that period. Prose became increasingly attractive because it enabled writers to associate popular stories with serious histories traditionally composed in prose, and could also be more easily translated.
Romances reworked legendsfairy talesand history, but by about they were out of fashion, and Miguel de Cervantes famously burlesqued them in Don Quixote Still, the modern image of medieval is more influenced by the romance than by any other medieval genre, and the word "medieval" evokes knights, distressed damsels, dragons, and such tropes.
Novella The term "novel" originates from the production of short stories, or novella that remained part of a European oral culture of storytelling into the late 19th century. Fairy tales, jokes, and humorous stories designed to make a point in a conversation, and the exemplum a priest would insert in a sermon belong into this tradition.
Written collections of such stories circulated in a wide range of products from practical compilations of examples designed for the use of clerics to compilations of various stories such as Boccaccio 's Decameron and Geoffrey Chaucer 's Canterbury Tales — The Decameron was a compilation of one hundred novelle told by ten people—seven women and three men—fleeing the Black Death by escaping from Florence to the Fiesole hills, in The customer in the copyist's shop with a book he wants to have copied.
This illustration of the first printed German Melusine looked back to the market of manuscripts. The modern distinction between history and fiction did not exist in the early sixteenth century and the grossest improbabilities pervade many historical accounts found in the early modern print market.
William Caxton 's edition of Thomas Malory 's Le Morte d'Arthur was sold as a true history, though the story unfolded in a series of magical incidents and historical improbabilities. Sir John Mandeville 's Voyages, written in the 14th century, but circulated in printed editions throughout the 18th century,  was filled with natural wonders, which were accepted as fact, like the one-footed Ethiopians who use their extremity as an umbrella against the desert sun.
Both works eventually came to be viewed as works of fiction. In the 16th and 17th centuries two factors led to the separation of history and fiction.
The invention of printing immediately created a new market of comparatively cheap entertainment and knowledge in the form of chapbooks.
The more elegant production of this genre by 17th- and 18th-century authors were belles lettres —that is, a market that would be neither low nor academic. However, it was not accepted as an example of belles lettres.
The Amadis eventually became the archetypical romance, in contrast with the modern novel which began to be developed in the 17th century.
Chapbook A chapbook is an early type of popular literature printed in early modern Europe. Produced cheaply, chapbooks were commonly small, paper-covered booklets, usually printed on a single sheet folded into books of 8, 12, 16 and 24 pages.
They were often illustrated with crude woodcutswhich sometimes bore no relation to the text. When illustrations were included in chapbooks, they were considered popular prints. The tradition arose in the 16th century, as soon as printed books became affordable, and rose to its height during the 17th and 18th centuries and Many different kinds of ephemera and popular or folk literature were published as chapbooks, such as almanacschildren's literaturefolk talesnursery rhymespamphletspoetryand political and religious tracts.
Cheap printed histories were, in the 17th and 18th centuries, especially popular among apprentices and younger urban readers of both sexes.
The Amadis and Rabelais ' Gargantua and Pantagruel were important publications with respect to this divide.
Both books specifically addressed the new customers of popular histories, rather than readers of belles lettres. The Amadis was a multi—volume fictional history of style, that aroused a debate about style and elegance as it became the first best-seller of popular fiction. On the other hand, Gargantua and Pantagruel, while it adopted the form of modern popular history, in fact satirized that genre's stylistic achievements.
The division, between low and high literature, became especially visible with books that appeared on both the popular and belles lettres markets in the course of the 17th and 18th centuries: Heroic romances and 17th-century French literature Heroic Romance is a genre of imaginative literature, which flourished in the 17th century, principally in France.
Although its action was, in the main, languid and sentimental, there was a side of the Astree which encouraged that extravagant love of glory, that spirit of " panache", which was now rising to its height in France. That spirit it was which animated Marin le Roy de Gomberville —who was the inventor of what have since been known as the Heroical Romances.
In these there was experienced a violent recrudescence of the old medieval elements of romance, the impossible valour devoted to a pursuit of the impossible beauty, but the whole clothed in the language and feeling and atmosphere of the age in which the books were written. In order to give point to the chivalrous actions of the heroes, it was always hinted that they were well-known public characters of the day in a romantic disguise.
Richard HeadThe English Rogue Stories of witty cheats were an integral part of the European novella with its tradition of fabliaux. The tradition that developed with these titles focused on a hero and his life. The adventures led to satirical encounters with the real world with the hero either becoming the pitiable victim or the rogue who exploited the vices of those he met.
A second tradition of satirical romances can be traced back to Heinrich Wittenwiler 's Ring c. Histories[ edit ] newspaper reprint of Robinson Crusoe A market of literature in the modern sense of the word, that is a separate market for fiction and poetry, did not exist until the late seventeenth century.In the 19th century, the early Bengali novels lived in two worlds.
Many of them were based on the past, with their characters, events and love stories based on historical events. Another group of novels depicted the inne. Late 19th century novels provide graphic descriptions of working and living conditions and their impact on population health, in particular the detrimental effects of hunger, poor housing, environmental conditions, hazardous work and poor pay, smoking and alcohol and crime, but also the transformative possibilities of social and political action.
Late 19th century novels provide graphic descriptions of working and living conditions and their impact on population health, in particular the detrimental effects of hunger, poor housing, environmental conditions, hazardous work and poor pay, smoking and alcohol and crime, but also the.
Women Writers of Twentieth Century Novels and Prose One of the interesting development in the twentieth century literature is the remarkable increase in the number of women writers especially novelist.
Best Books of the 19th Century The best books published during the 19th century (January 1st, through December 31st ). See also Most Rated Book By Year Best Books By Century: 21st, 20th, Ivanhoe (Waverley Novels, #5) by.
Walter Scott. avg rating — 76, ratings. For instance, the most canonical of all Victorian novels -Eliot's Middlemarch- might be defined as a provincial novel, a historical novel, a double Bildungsroman, or (more generally) a classic work of realism.