Charles Lamb is a shining star in the sky
of English essay. He is called the prince among English essayists. His essays
are the finest in English prose. He brought to prose the finest qualities of
Romanticism. Lamb's readers appreciate him for his wisdom, for his humanity,
for his genial humour, for his profound pathos, for his sweet temperament and
for his style. BEGINNING: Born in a lower class family,
Lamb came in contact with Cole ridge. He started his career as a poet but could
not succeed. He acquired immortal recognition as an essayist. From 1820 to
1833, essay writing was his main occupation. He wrote under the pseudonym of
Elia. His first essay appeared in the London Magazine in 1820. The first volume
of his essays was published in 1823 as Essays Of Elia and the second as the
Last Essays Of Elia in 1833. Each essay of Lamb is a little wonder. Here we
find a fine combination of wit, fancy, anecdote and reflection. According to
Cazamian, he is above all an artist.
INTRODUCTION:William Hazlitt is one of the greatest essayist of English literature. As an essayist he enjoys infallible reputation. His contribution to the English essay is noteworthy.
AS AN ESSAYIST : Hazlitt was the son of a Unitarian minister.
After a brief stay at America
he returned to England
where his literary genius ultimately flowered. Coleridge influenced his mind
and art to a great extent. From 1814 till his death he contributed to the
Edinburgh Review, The Examiner, The Times and The London Magazine. His well
known essays were collected in the Round Table, Table Talk or Original Essays on Men and Manners and The
Spirit of the Age or Contemporary Portraits. By his bold and radical views,
Hazlitt attracted a lot of attention and criticism. But he always wrote
VAST RANGE OF TOPICS
: Hazlitt was a prolific writer. He was a keen observer of life. His
sharp memory remembered the past incidents with astonishing vividness and
detail. He was eager to inquire into human l…
INTRODUCTION: Bacon, the father of
English essay, is the first great English essayist who enjoys a glorious
reputation. He remains for the sheer mass and weight of genius. His essays
introduce a new form of composition into English literature. THREE EDIIONS OF BACON'S ESSAYS: Bacon
sponsored this new literary form in English with the publication of his ten
essays in 1597. It grew to thirty-eight in the edition of 1612. The number
reached fifty-eight in the final issue of 1625. These essays are the results of
his direct observations of men and matters.
DISPERSED MEDITATIONS: Bacon charged his essays with the serious
spirit and stately manners of Seneca. For him his essays were dispersed
meditations and receptacle for detached thoughts. He is practical under the
influence of Machiavelli. Utilitarianism is obvious in his essays. He shrewdly
instructs how to lead a successful life. That's why his essays are called
counsels civil and moral. BACON AND MONTAIGNE: Bacon borrowed …
William Congreve is the best
and finest writer of the comedy of manners. We may say that he has invented a
new art of comedy. His ' The Way of the World' is considered as a work of art
and as a pure comedy of manners. It is the apotheosis of the comedy of manners.
It is a remarkable demonstration of Congreve's technical skill as a playwright.
Here we find an ironic commentary on the ways of society of the time.
The comedy of manners is a
genuine reflection of the temper of the upper classes of the nation. It deals
the external details of life, the fashion of the time, its manners, its speech
and its interest. The dramatists confine themselves to the drawing rooms, the
coffee houses, the clubs, the gambling centers, the streets and gardens of London. The characters
represent the people of fashion. The plots of comedy of manners are mainly love
intrigues. They are remarkable for neat, precise, witty, balanced and lucid