Catalogue


The eighteenth-century British verse epistle /
Bill Overton.
imprint
Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.
description
xiii, 299 p. : ill. ; 22 cm.
ISBN
140394170X (hbk.), 9781403941701 (hbk.)
format(s)
Book
Holdings
More Details
imprint
Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan, 2007.
isbn
140394170X (hbk.)
9781403941701 (hbk.)
catalogue key
6291271
 
Includes bibliographical references and index.
A Look Inside
About the Author
Author Affiliation
Bill Overton is Professor of Literary Studies at Loughborough University, UK.
Full Text Reviews
Appeared in Choice on 2008-08-01:
Overton had two main goals in writing this book: to substantiate the proposition that the 18th century was an epistolary era and to define and exemplify the verse epistle in its many forms. This book is unusual because the author combines quantitative analysis with more conventional literary interpretation. He also makes a serious (and largely successful) attempt to make online literary databases useful to scholarly criticism. Overton does not rely on databases alone; he has clearly read very widely and is able to make plausible claims about the frequency of epistolary verse without overtaxing his evidence. In later chapters he provides surveys and illustrative readings of his subcategories: "familiar and humorous," "discursive," "satirical and commentary," "amatory," and "dramatic." The readings are sensitive, clear, and valuable, and they pay attention to matters of gender and class. This solid resource complements more focused studies like William Dowling's The Epistolary Moment (1991) and James How's Epistolary Spaces (2003). The book might be accused of ranging a little too widely in places, but in general it accomplishes what it sets out to do. Summing Up: Recommended. Upper-division undergraduates through faculty. S. R. MacKenzie University of British Columbia
Reviews
This item was reviewed in:
Choice, August 2008
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Summaries
Long Description
Many eighteenth-century people wrote verse epistles, but no study has addressed their full variety and significance. This is the first book to cover the whole range of epistolary verse in the period, including not only the discursive type favoured by Pope and others, but also familiar and dramatic epistles. It advances a new model for defining the form, demonstrates the form's importance in the period, and pays special attention to non-canonical epistles, including those by women, occasional and labouring-class writers.
Description for Bookstore
Many eighteenth-century people wrote verse epistles, but no study has addressed their full variety and significance. This is the first book to cover the whole range of epistolary verse in the period, including not only the discursive type favored by Pope and others, but also familiar and dramatic epistles.
Title Summary
"This is the first comprehensive study of the verse epistle in Britain during the eighteenth century, the period of its greatest importance. It offers a systematic definition of the form that attempts to do justice to its full variety, and it also provides convincing evidence of how popular a form it was. Through detailed analysis of a large number of examples of all types of epistle - including ethic, familiar, humorous, heroic, satirical and complimentary - it casts light both on well-known poems by such writers as Alexander Pope and Robert Burns, and on poems that are little known or not known at all. Among these are epistles by women such as Anne Finch, Lady Mary Wortley Montagu and Susanna Blamire, and by writers of both sexes from the labouring classes, such as Allan Ramsay, John Bancks and Mary Leapor."--BOOK JACKET.
Bowker Data Service Summary
Many 18th century people wrote verse epistles, but no study has addressed their full variety and significance. This is the first book to cover the whole range of epistolary verse in the period, including not only the discursive type favoured by Pope and others, but also familiar and dramatic epistles.
Table of Contents
Prefacep. ix
Acknowledgementsp. xi
Note on Referencesp. xiii
Definitionp. 1
Frequencyp. 32
Familiar and Humorousp. 66
Discursivep. 104
Heroic and Amatoryp. 133
Satirical and Complimentaryp. 168
Verse Epistles in Dryden's Miscellany, Dodsley's and Pearch's Collections, and Lonsdale's Anthologiesp. 197
The Database of Epistles from Literature Onlinep. 209
Notesp. 210
List of Works Citedp. 256
Indexp. 278
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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