Romanticism arouse as a reaction against the Age of Reason. It was a reaction of sensibility against Rationalism which, being based on exact rules and physical science, diminished the function of man’s emotional nature both in Art and life.

– Interest in the ideal, feelings and emotions

– Man guided by his heart

– Man had feelings as well as reason; feelings and emotions, not reason, distinguished him from the animal world

– Man’s ability to feel was more important than his ability to reason because he had to enter in touch with a world which was beyond the power of reason, not the World of Things which could be touched and seen, but the World of The Spirit which could give meaning to the World of Things

– Focused on the individual seen at the centre of Art and Life and living in harmony with Nature

-Do not believe in a created nature and in a transcendent God, but in a “creating nature and in an immanent God.   They saw in Nature the same divine Force which they found in the Spirit of Man  and were attracted by great  natural phenomena such as violent storms, torrential rivers and high mountains.

– Had a vision of a dynamic universe:‘Creation never ends’ (Kant); the Universe was a creating force, imperfect and changeable, always recreating itself

– The Augustans, explaining everything through the reason, even beautiful and misterious natural phenomena (the rainbow for example) had destroyed a perfect example of natural beauty and the inspiration for man’s sense of divine mystery in the Universe

– Disliked the towns which had lost their identity, had become ugly and had corrupted man

– Had great interest in the children and the Poor; they were still uncorrupted by civilization and then were bearers of positive values

– Were interested in the search for sensation, in the unknown and in the supernatural

– Referred to the Celtic period and to the Middle Ages bur, far from imitating them, they revisited them through their imagination

– Interest in the real and in Reason

– Man guided by his head

– Man’s most important characteristic was reason; it was his ability to reason that distinguished him from the animal world

– Man’s power of observation was more important than his ability to feel because he was mainly concerned with the World of Things, a world governed by exact rules and mechanical principles. As a consequence Reason was the right criterion of everything and man, was the only creature to have it

– Focused in man in society more than in man in Nature; he was like in a puzzle a piece of a perfect whole

– Believed in an “ordained Nature“, a nature that reflects the order and the harmony of  God. To follow nature meant to represent the world as it was,to obey reason.They were also attracted by ‘a reasoned nature’ as we can find in parks or gardens.


– Had a vision of a static world



– The great natural phenomena had nothing to do with the divine; they were only natural phenomena which could be reproduced by man; the rainbow, for instance, might be created through a prismatic lens and then it was only the result of prismatic colours(Newton)

– Loved the towns which they considered one of the greatest symbols of civilization

– Did not consider the children and the Poor; they lived at the margin of society without any help to better their conditions

– Were interested in domestic pleasures, in the known and in the conventional

– Referred to ancient Greece and Rome using subjects from classical mythology and history and imitating them

– Thought that the Role of the Poet was to express his feelings without allowing external rules to influence him

– The artistic creation was a spontaneous natural and original process coming from the inner soul: ‘if Art does not come spontaneously, almost unconsciously as leaves to a tree, it had better not come at all’ (Keats)

– Tried to adopt a very simple and direct language, the one ‘really spoken by man and closer to the Masses’ (Wordsworth)

– Used earlier and varied verse form: Blank Verse, the Sonnet, The Folk Ballad Stanza, the Italian Terza Rima and Ottava Rima, etc…

– Thought that The Role of the Poet was to re-express his knowledge of the world in a rational and objective way without allowing his emotions to influence him

– The artistic creation, like science, had to follow exact rules and was to be based on reason: ‘In good Art, inspiration must be controlled by judgement’ (Boileau)

-Adopted the poetic diction, an artificial language which used uncommon and learned words, Latinate and periphrasis

– Mainly used the heroic couplet



About rosariomario

retired teacher docente in pensione
This entry was posted in appunti di letteratura inglese per studenti italiani e non, tratti da testi vari. Notes of English Literature for Italian/non-Italian students taken from various school textbooks. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. rosariomario says:

    that is high prise but, Ithink, unworthy. Anyway, glad to have received it.Thank you so much ^_^

  2. MahaAli says:

    Wow ❗great… I m preparing for my assignment…and I think its my luck that… I have come to your PaGe…its really helpful…outstanding effort …U have made my work easy…So …thnx a lot…☺☺☺

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.