The omissions were indeed striking. He even claimed that Gibbon would have desired "nothing more ardently" than to see his work improved in this way.
The omissions were indeed striking. He even claimed that Gibbon would have desired "nothing more ardently" than to see his work improved in this way. But Bowdler was not quite what he seemed, or posterity, which invented the word "bowdlerize" to denote a foolish or misconceived editing of a text to remove contentious passages, has depicted.
To begin with, he did not actually edit Shakespeare and Gibbon at all. The task was actually carried out by his sister Harriet, who was well enough known in society circles to have her portrait painted by Sir Thomas Lawrence 3.
Bowdler himself, in any case, was not a Victorian at all, but died in Life was not a task to him, but a sinecure: As the journalist W. Greg wrote admiringly of the great Victorian headmaster of Rugby boarding school, Thomas Arnold, 4 after his death inincidentally illustrating how much the values he described were shared across Europe: The predominant characteristic of Dr.
Life, in his view of it, was no pilgrimage of pleasure, but a scene Victorian culture toil, of effort, of appointed work - of grand purposes to be striven for - of vast ends to be achieved - of fearful evils to be uprooted or trampled down - of sacred and mighty principles to be asserted and carried out.
In architecture, Classical ideals of proportion dominated, derived from the Roman writer Vitruvius; in sculpture, the ideal form was considered to be embodied in Classical works such as the Apollo Belvedere 5. Artists like Constable and Turner, for all their later departure from Classical principles, went through this training, which left its indelible mark on their work.
As Dr Arnold remarked: It has always seemed to me one of the great advantages of the course of study generally pursued in our English schools, that it draws our minds so continually to dwell upon the past.
Every day we are engaged in studying the languages, the history, and the thoughts of men who lived nearly or more than two thousand years ago; if we have to inquire about laws or customs, about works of art or science, they are the laws, customs, arts, and sciences, not of existing nations, but of those whose course has been long since ended.
Arnold saw this study as a kind of moral and mental discipline that would equip boys with the sound principles needed for adult life.
This, indeed, was for many Victorians a touchstone of literary and historical value. They were, in fact, among the first characteristic literary products of the dominant cultural movement of the first half of the nineteenth century, Romanticism, and Romanticism was itself not least a reaction against the rationalist and materialist spirit of the Enlightenment.
If the Enlightenment had stressed the need to subordinate the emotions to the intellect, Romanticism took the opposite line and stressed instead the emotions as the fundamental source of truth, authenticity and their expression in art.
The emergence of Romanticism reflected widespread European revulsion against the excesses of the Revolution and Terror in France, a revulsion shared in full measure in Britain, and widely ascribed to the hegemony of abstract and rigid conceptions of how human happiness was to be achieved.
At the same time, however, Romanticism was also a revolt against the social hierarchies and rigidities of the eighteenth century. Often the artist himself was depicted as an isolated individual fighting against the world and defying convention: Beethoven rather than Haydn, for example.
The idea of the tortured genius was central to the Romantic ideal of art. So too was the revival of interest in the Middle Ages, seen not as a dark period of credulity and superstition, but as an era of great deeds and deep emotions, far away from the prosaic and mechanical world of early industrial society.Victorian Literature and Culture seeks to publish innovative scholarship of broad interest to the field.
We are especially interested in work that contributes or responds to the current moment of heightened methodological reflection, theoretical energy, and formal experimentation.
5th period Culture of the Victorian Era The Victorian Era was named after Queen Victoria in the years of to During that time frame, Victorian culture was successful with new ideas every day.
By the end of the century, however, the high noon of Victorian culture was starting to give way to more disturbing developments - the disintegration of musical tonality, the emergence of abstract art, the eruption of the 'primitive' into cultural styles and the arrival of modernism onto the artistic scene.
The Victorian Popular Culture portal is an essential resource for the study of popular entertainment in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. This is a wonderful resource that provides a wealth of material dealing with past popular media experiences, and is valuable for research and teaching purposes.
Victorian Web: Victorian Social History: An Overview. An example of one of the many sub-pages of the Victorian Web that organizes links by topic, genre, or individual. A great starting point for any Web research on Victorian culture.
The Victorian Popular Culture portal is an essential resource for the study of popular entertainment in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
This is a wonderful resource that provides a wealth of material dealing with past popular media experiences, and is valuable for research and teaching purposes.