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Literature And Artwork Of Romanticism

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Romanticism was an intellectual and artistic movement which originated in late 18th century Western Europe ( It was in part a rebellion against the aristocratic, social, and political norms of the Enlightenment period. It was also a reaction against the rationalization of nature. "In art and literature it stressed strong emotion as a source of aesthetic experience, placing new emphasis on such emotions as trepidation, horror, and the awe experienced in confronting the sublimity of nature" ( Romanticism was influenced by some of the ideas of the Enlightenment, most specifically evolution and epistemology based on usage and custom (

It was also influenced by schemes of the Enlightenment, elevating medievalism along with the elements of art and narratives perceived to come from the medieval period. "The name "romantic" itself comes from the term "romance" which is a prose or poetic narrative originating in the medieval" ( Romanticism gave emphasis to imagination along with feeling. "But a precise characterization and a specific description of Romanticism have been objects of intellectual history and literary history for all of the twentieth century without any great measures of consensus emerging" ( "Arthur Lovejoy attempted to demonstrate the difficulty of this problem in his seminal article "On the Discrimination of Romanticisms" in his "Essays in the History of Ideas" (

Poets, such as Edgar Allan Poe, John Greenleaf Whittier, and Henry Wadsworth Longfellow all produced works that followed the Romantic vein. Beginning in Germany and England in the 1770's, Romanticism had moved throughout Europe before finally conquering the French ( From there it quickly traveled to the Western hemisphere. One of the great artists of the Romantic era was Caspar David Friedrich. Born in 1774, he was a nineteenth century painter who was "considered by many critics to be one of the finest representatives of the movement" (

He modeled his sketches and studies of different scenic areas. His works were almost forgotten by much of the public during the second half of the nineteenth century. "Only at the end of the 19th and beginning of the 20th century he was rediscovered by Symbolist painters for his visionary and allegorical paintings. For that same reason, Max Ernst and other surrealists saw him as a precursor of their movement" ( He also sketched monuments and sculptures for mausoleums, reflecting his obsession with death and the afterlife. Some of his funeral art is in Dresden's cemeteries, although some of his masterpieces were destroyed during a fire at the Glass Palace in Munich in 1931 and in the bombing of Dresden in World War II (

"The painter should paint not only what he has in front of him, but also what he sees inside himself. If he sees nothing within, then he should stop painting what is in front of him" Caspar David Friedrich.

One famous writer of the Romantic Era was Edgar Allan Poe. "Edgar Allan Poe was an American poet, short story writer, editor, critic and one of the leaders of the American Romantic Movement" ( He was born in Boston, Massachusetts. After his parents died very early in his life, he was taken into the home of a Richmond merchant by the name of John Allan ( He was brought up in England from 1815-1820.

While Mr. Allan never legally adopted him, Poe did take Allan's name as his middle name ( After being expelled from the University of Virginia for not paying his gambling debts, Allan disowned him. His morbid tales are said to have contributed to the science fiction genre of writing. In the summer of 1839, Poe became the assistant editor of Burton's Gentleman's Magazine, where he published a large number of articles, stories, and reviews ( Poe first gained critical acclaim throughout England and France. An example of Poe's work is:

For the moon never beams without bringing me dreams

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And the stars never rise but I feel the bright eyes

Of the beautiful Annabel Lee;

And so, all the night-time, I lie down by the side

Of my darling - my darling - my life and my bride,

In the sepulchre there by the sea,

In her tomb by the sounding sea.

(from 'Annabel Lee', 1849) From

Poe's first collection was "Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque" and appeared in 1840. In this collection was "The Fall of the House of Usher" which was one of his most works ( This particular story has been the inspiration for several film adaptations. The first was in 1960 by Roger Corman (

Poe's longest tale was "Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym", written in 1938. Poe's poem "The Raven" was the work which brought him fame when it appeared 1845 ( Poe's work, as recognized in France, inspired other authors as well. Some of these include Charles Baudelaire, Paul Valery, and Stephane Mallarme ( Poe stated: "With me poetry has been not a purpose, but a passion; and the passions should be held in reverence: they must not-they cannot at will be excited with an eye to the paltry compensations, or the more paltry commendations, of mankind" ( One of Poe's quotes is:




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