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King Lear , for instance , is set in pre - Saxon Britain , Henry IV in fourteenth - century England , Hamlet in eighth - century Denmark , but these plays are not “ historical " in our meaning . They are not plays about ancient Britain ...
Some are softened by humor : Tom Bowling is one of these ; others , the brutal naval officer Captain Oakum , for instance , or the foppish Captain Whiffle , are not ; they are , as it were , flung at the reader in terms of the most ...
And this is true not merely in this single instance . It is the law of Peacock's being . In all the speeches of his characters , however absurd they may be , there is a kind of passion , the passion of the self - absorbed , the crank .
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Remember when literary critics read books and wrote about them? No? Well, I do now. He got a few things wrong - what did these people ever see in H.G. Wells? In Meredith? That they should be put next ... Read full review
THE EIGHTEENTH CENTURY
THE EARLY VICTORIANS
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