Some disadvantages of the form were apparent from the outset. The novel is a genre of fiction, and fiction may be defined as the art or craft of contriving, through the written word, representations of human life that instruct or divert or both. A novel is a narrative work of prose fiction that tells a story about specific human experiences over a considerable length. The development of the prose novel at this time was encouraged by innovations in printing, and the introduction of cheap paper in the 15th century. Omissions? Definition of novel (Entry 2 of 2) 1 : an invented prose narrative that is usually long and complex and deals especially with human experience through a usually connected sequence of events. Though the method was most often a vehicle for sentimental novels, it was not limited to them. Be on the lookout for your Britannica newsletter to get trusted stories delivered right to your inbox. Historical novel, a novel that has as its setting a period of history and that attempts to convey the spirit, manners, and social conditions of a past age with realistic detail and fidelity (which is in some cases only apparent fidelity) to historical fact. Of the outstanding examples of the form, Richardson’s Clarissa (1748) has tragic intensity, Tobias Smollett’s Humphry Clinker (1771) is a picaresque comedy and social commentary, and Fanny Burney’s Evelina (1778) is a novel of manners. By signing up for this email, you are agreeing to news, offers, and information from Encyclopaedia Britannica. Novel - Novel - Types of novel: For the hack novelist, to whom speedy output is more important than art, thought, and originality, history provides ready-made plots and characters. The advantages of the novel in letter form are that it presents an intimate view of the character’s thoughts and feelings without interference from the author and that it conveys the shape of events to come with dramatic immediacy. From 1800 on, the popularity of the form declined, though novels combining letters with journals and narrative were still common. In the simplest terms, a novel is a fictional prose work of considerable length. Let us know if you have suggestions to improve this article (requires login). von Goethe used it for his statement of Romantic despair, Die Leiden des jungen Werthers (1774; The Sorrows of Young Werther). Epistolary novel, a novel told through the medium of letters written by one or more of the characters. His age regarded letter writing as an art on which could be expended the literary care…, The epistolary method, most notably used by Samuel Richardson in. In the 20th century letter fiction was often used to exploit the linguistic humour and unintentional character revelations of such semiliterates as the hero of Ring Lardner’s You Know Me Al (1916). Epistolary novel, a novel told through the medium of letters written by one or more of the characters. Getting to the bottom of what makes a 'novel': a novel is like meeting an old friend all over again. Originating with Samuel Richardson’s Pamela; or, Virtue Rewarded (1740), the story of a servant girl’s victorious struggle against her master’s attempts to seduce her, it was one of the earliest forms of novel to be developed and remained one of the most popular up to the 19th century. The various forms that fiction may take are best seen less as a number of separate categories than as a continuum or, more accurately, a cline, with some such brief form as the anecdote at one end of the scale and the longest conceivable … 2. REVIEW OF RELATED LITERATURE 2.1 The Definition of Novel A novel is a long, fictional narrative which describes intimate human experiences. Jean-Jacques Rousseau used the form as a vehicle for his ideas on marriage and education in La Nouvelle Héloïse (1761; “The New Eloise”), and J.W. A novel on Alexander the Great or Joan of Arc can be as flimsy and superficial as any schoolgirl romance. The epistolary novel’s reliance on subjective points of view makes it the forerunner of the modern psychological novel. Also, the presentation of events from several points of view lends the story dimension and verisimilitude. The servant girl Pamela’s remarkable literary powers and her propensity for writing on all occasions were cruelly burlesqued in Henry Fielding’s Shamela (1741), which pictures his heroine in bed scribbling, “I hear him coming in at the Door,” as her seducer enters the room. Our editors will review what you’ve submitted and determine whether to revise the article. The novels of Samuel Richardson arose out of his pedagogic vocation, which arose out of his trade of printer—the compilation of manuals of letter-writing technique for young ladies. Corrections? The letter novel of Pierre Choderlos de Laclos, Les Liaisons dangereuses (1782; Dangerous Acquaintances), is a work of penetrating and realistic psychology. This article was most recently revised and updated by, Prose style and length, as well as fictional or semi-fictional subject matter, are the most clearly defining characteristics of a novel. Dependent on the letter writer’s need to “confess” to virtue, vice, or powerlessness, such confessions were susceptible to suspicion or ridicule. Updates? 2 : the literary genre consisting of novels. The novel in the modern era usually makes use of a literary prose style.

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