LITERARY TERMS

  1. What is meant by Renaissance?

Renaissance means ‘revival’ or ‘rebirth’ of Greek learning, art, literature and culture of the Middle Ages in Europe.  In England it came through Italy and flourished in the Elizabethan Age in the works of Shakespeare, Spenser, Marlowe and Ben Jonson.

  1. What is meant by Reformation?

Reformation was a religious Movement led by Martin Luther in the fifteenth century.  It protested against the practices of the Roman Catholic Church.  It advocated complete faith in the Bible and in one’s own soul for salvation.

 

  1. Define an Epic.

“An Epic is a long narrative poem on a great and serious subject, related in an elevated style, and centred on a heroic or quasidivine figure on whose actions depends the fate of a tribe, a nation, or the human race. ” (M.  H.  Abrams)

 

  1. What is a Mock Epic or Mock Heroic Poem?

The Mock Epic is a parody of the real Epic in a light nonserious mood.  It is written on a very trivial or funny incident on which a garb of classical conventions of a real epic is overlaid.

 

  1. What is a Sonnet?

The term Sonnet is derived from the Italian sonneto which means ‘a little sound’.  It is a musical poem in fourteen lines written in Iambic Pentameter and linked by an intricate rhyme scheme.

 

  1. Define an Ode.

An Ode is a long lyrical poem, serious in subject, elevated in style and elaborate in its stanzaic structure.  It is in the form of an address to the object or the person about whom it is written.

 

  1. What is a Pindaric Ode?

The Pindaric Odes are written on the model of the odes written by Pindar, the great Greek poet.  They are choric in character and designed to be sung by a troupe of dancers in churches or public halls.

  1. What is a Lyric?

A Lyric is a short musical composition meant to be sung to the accompaniment of a lyre by a single singer.  Now the term is used for any short non-narrative poem expressing a single thought or feeling of the poet.

 

  1. What is a Pastoral?

The Idyll and the Pastoral have the same genetic root.  Pastorals are conventional poems describing the peace, simplicity, innocence and happy life of the shepherds in an idealized natural setting.

 

  1. What is an Elegy?

An Elegy is essentially a poem of mourning or lamentation on the death of some particular person.  In the wider sense it may also be a poem of mourning on the mortality and vanity of human life in general.

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