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Outlines of English and American Literature
Summary
by Long, William J.


The age of Victoria (1837-1901) approaches our own so closely that it is still difficult to form an accurate judgment of its history or literature. In a review of the history of the age we noted three factors, democracy, science, imperialism, which have profoundly influenced English letters from 1850 to the present time.

Our study of Victorian literature includes (1) The life and works of the two greater poets of the age, Tennyson and Browning. (2) The work of Elizabeth Barrett, Matthew Arnold, Rossetti, Morris and Swinburne, who were selected from the two hundred representive poets of the period. (3) The life and the chief works of the major novelists, Dickens, Thackeray and George Eliot. (4) A review of some other novelists of the age, the Brontë Sisters, Mrs. Gaskell, Anthony Trollope, Blackmore, Kingsley, Meredith, Hardy and Stevenson. (5) The typical essayists and historians, Macaulay, Carlyle, Ruskin, with a review of other typical groups of writers in the fields of religion, history and science.

Selections for Reading

Typical selections from all authors named in the text are found in Manly, English Poetry, English Prose; Pancoast, Standard English Poems, Standard English Prose; and several other collections, which are especially useful in a study of the minor writers. The works of the major authors may be read to much better advantage in various inexpensive editions prepared for school use. Only a few such editions are named below for each author, but a fairly complete list is given under Texts in the General Bibliography.

Tennyson's selected minor poems, Idylls of the King, The Princess and In Memoriam, in Standard English Classics, Riverside Literature, Pocket Classics, Silver Classics. A good volume containing the best of Tennyson's poems in Athenĉum Press Series.

Browning and Mrs. Browning, selected poems in Standard English Classics, Lake Classics, English Readings, Belles Lettres Series.

Matthew Arnold, selected poems in Golden Treasury Series, Maynard's English Classics; Sohrab and Rustum in Standard English Classics; prose selections in English Readings, Academy Classics.

Dickens, Tale of Two Cities, David Copperfield, Christmas Carol in Standard English Classics, Lake Classics; other novels in Everyman's Library.

Thackeray, Henry Esmond in Standard English Classics, Pocket Classics; English Humorists in Lake Classics, English Readings; other works in Everyman's Library.

George Eliot, Silas Marner, in Standard English Classics, Riverside Literature; Mill on the Floss and other novels in Everyman's Library.

Blackmore's Lorna Doone and Mrs. Gaskell's Cranford in Standard English Classics. Reade's Cloister and the Hearth, Kingsley's Westward Ho and Hypatia in Everyman's Library.

Macaulay, selected essays in Standard English Classics, Riverside Literature, Lake Classics.

Carlyle, Essay on Burns in Standard English Classics, Academy Classics; Heroes and Hero Worship in Athenĉum Press, Pocket Classics; French Revolution in Everyman's Library.

Ruskin, Sesame and Lilies and selected essays and letters in Standard English Classics; selections from Ruskin's art books in Riverside Literature; other works in Everyman's Library.

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