History of English Literature

Timeline created by Paobernal
In History
  • 450

    OLD ENGLISH 450-1066

    OLD ENGLISH 450-1066
    Old English literature or Anglo-Saxon literature, encompasses the surviving literature written in Old English in Anglo-Saxon England, in the period after the settlement of the Saxons and other Germanic tribes in England (Jutes and the Angles) c. 450, after the withdrawal of the Romans, and "ending soon after the Norman Conquest" in 1066.

    These works include:
    Epic poetry, Hagiography, Sermons, Bible translations, Legal works, Chronicles
  • 450


    *Alfred, King: He prevented England from falling to the Danes and promoted learning and literacy. *Cynewulf: They are The Fates of the Apostles, Elene, Christ II, and Juliana *Bede: "Bede's Death Song", "Doomsday." *Caedmon: Cædmon’s Hymn
  • 1066

    MIDDLE ENGLISH 1066 - 1500

    MIDDLE ENGLISH 1066 - 1500
    Middle English saw significant changes to its vocabulary, grammar, pronunciation, and orthography. Writing conventions during the Middle English period varied widely. During this period many Old English grammatical features either became simplified or disappeared altogether. Noun, adjective and verb inflections were simplified by the reduction (and eventual elimination) of most grammatical case distinctions.
  • 1066


    *Bacon, Roger: Opus Maius. *Chaucer, Geoffrey: The major poet of England in the late Middle Ages and the most significant writer before Shakespeare. His oeuvre can be divided into three periods 1st. Roman de la rose 2nd. Dante and Boccaccio. *Gower, John (c. 1330-1408) An English poet of courtly love who is remembered as the author of the Confessio Amantis. *Kempe, Margery (c. 1373- c.1439) An East Anglian women who are known to posterity from The Boke of Margery Kempe.
  • 1500


    England had a strong tradition of literature in the English vernacular, which gradually increased as English use of the printing press became common by the mid 16th century. By the time of Elizabethan literature a vigorous literary culture in both drama and poetry included poets such as: The plays of English Renaissance theatre were the outstanding legacy of the period.
  • PURITAN 1653 - 1660

    PURITAN 1653 - 1660
    The Puritans were members of a religious reform movement known as Puritanism that arose within the Church of England in the late 16th century. They constantly modified and expanded that identity through a flood of sermons, histories, poems and should eliminate ceremonies and practices not rooted in the Bible. The Puritans believed that their society in New England would provide, in John Winthrop’s phrase:
    “A Modell of Christian Charity”
  • 1653

    Devoted fisherman Izaak Walton publishes the classic work on the subject, The Compleat Angler
  • 1653 1658

    1653 1658
    Puritan Oliver Cromwell rules England as Lord protector.
  • RESTORATION AGE 1660 - 1700

    RESTORATION AGE 1660 - 1700
    It marked the return of Charles II as king (1660–85). The name 'restoration' comes from the crowning of Charles II. The writings of this time are both innovative and varied; the style and subject matter of the literature produced during the Restoration period spanned the spectrum from definitively religious to satirical and risqué. The thinkers helped to develop the modern science that treats the natural world as a knowable and testable subject.
  • 1660

    Monarchy restored under Charles II
  • 18TH CENTURY 1700 - 1798

    18TH CENTURY 1700 - 1798
    The 18th century was marked by two main impulses: reason and passion. The respect paid to reason was shown in pursuit of order, symmetry, decorum, and scientific knowledge; the cultivation of the feelings stimulated philanthropy, exaltation of personal relationships, religious fervour, and the cult of sentiment, or sensibility. In literature the rational impulse fostered satire, argument, wit, plain prose; the other inspired the psychological novel and the poetry of the sublime.
  • ROMANTICISM 1798 - 1837

    ROMANTICISM 1798 - 1837
    It was an artistic, literary, and intellectual movement that originated in Europe. The movement of so many people in England was the result of two forces:
    - The Agricultural Revolution, which involved enclosures that drove workers and their families off the land
    - Industrial Revolution which provided them employment Authors: William Wordsworth, Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Robert Southey, and journalist Thomas de Quincey.

    *William Wordsworth: Baladas líricas, An Evening Walk, Descriptive Sketches *Samuel Taylor Coleridge: Rime of the Ancient Mariner, Kubla Khan, *Robert Southey: Fall of Robespierre, Joan of Arc: An Epic Poem, Con Amos Simon Cottle, Icelandic poetry or The Edda of Sæmund, Saint Patrick's Purgatory, After Blenheim, Devil's Thoughts. *Thomas de Quincey: Confessions of an English Opium-Eater, On the Knocking at the Gate in Macbeth, Walladmor Murder Considered as One of the Fine Arts.
  • VICTORIAN 1837 - 1901

    VICTORIAN 1837 - 1901
    Mainly written in English, during the reign of Queen Victoria. The Victorians are credited with 'inventing childhood', partly via their efforts to stop child labour and the introduction of compulsory education. As children began to be able to read, literature for young people became a growth industry. Writers like Lewis Carroll, R. M. Ballantyne and Anna Sewell wrote mainly for children.
  • MODERN LITERATURE 1901 - 1940

    MODERN LITERATURE 1901 - 1940
    It has its origins in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, mainly in Europe and North America, and is characterized by a self-conscious break with traditional ways of writing, in both poetry and prose fiction. This literary movement was driven by a conscious desire to overturn traditional modes of representation and express the new sensibilities of their time. Some modernist writers include: Knut Hamsun
    Luigi Pirandello
    The Late Mattia Pascal
  • EDWARDIAN PERIOD 1901 - 1914

    EDWARDIAN PERIOD 1901 - 1914
    In fiction, some of the best-known names are:
    *J. M. Barrie
    *Arnold Bennett
    *G. K. Chesterton
    *Joseph Conrad
    *E. M. Forster
    *John Galsworthy Among the most famous works of literary criticism was A. C. Bradley's Shakespearean Tragedy (1904)
  • THE GEORGIAN PERIOD 1910 - 1936

    THE GEORGIAN PERIOD 1910 - 1936
    It named after the Hanoverian kings George I, George II, George III, and George IV. Poets, including: *Lascelles Abercrombie: Interludes and Poems, La venta de Santo Tomás, Doce idilios y otros poemas.
    *Hilaire Belloc: The Path to Rome, A Conscript’s View of the French Army, The Liberal Tradition.
    *Edmund Charles Blunden: Three Poems, The Barn,The Silver Bird of Herndyke Mill, Stane Street, The Gods of the World Beneath.
    *William Henry Davies : A Fleeting Passion, A Great Time.
  • POST MODERNS 1940 - 2000

    POST MODERNS 1940 - 2000
    Postmodernism is a broad movement that developed in the mid- to late 20th century across philosophy, the arts, architecture, and criticism, marking a departure from modernism. The most influential early postmodern philosophers were Jean Baudrillard, Jean-François Lyotard, and Jacques Derrida.
  • POST MODERNS 1940 - 2000 WRITERS

    POST MODERNS 1940 - 2000  WRITERS
    *Anna Akhmatova: Evening (1912) - Rosary (1914). *Jorge Amado: The Country of Carnival, Cacau (1933), Sweat (Suor, 1934), Jubiabá (1935). *Oswald de Andrade: Meu Testamento (1944), A Arcádia e a Inconfidência (1945). *W. H. Auden: New Year Letter, The Double Man, Canzone, Kairos and Logos".

    The word contemporary means living, belonging to or occurring in the present. So when we talk about contemporary literature, we are talking about literature that is being written in the now about the now. Contemporary literature is defined as literature written after World War II through the current day.

    Some authors of this period are: *Martin Amis: Amis Omnibus (omnibus) (1999), The Fiction of Martin Amis (2000), Vintage Amis (2004). *Margaret Atwood: The Tent (2006), Moral Disorder (2006), Stone Mattress (2014). *Zadie Smith: The Zen of Eminem. In: Vibe, 2002, The Limited Circle is Pur. In: The New Republic, 3rd November 2003. *Gabriel García Márquez: Macondo, La soledad, El coronel no tiene quien le escriba, La mala hora y La hojarasca.