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Amadis in EnglishA Study in the Reading of Romance$
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Helen Moore

Print publication date: 2020

Print ISBN-13: 9780198832423

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: June 2020

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780198832423.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 24 September 2021

The Homer of Romancy-Writers

The Homer of Romancy-Writers

Republic, Restoration, and After

(p.177) 5 The Homer of Romancy-Writers
Amadis in English

Helen Moore

Oxford University Press

This chapter’s title quotes Margaret Cavendish’s description of Amadis and it explores the return to prominence post-1660 of Amadis’s relationship to French, rather than Spanish, literary culture. Don Quixote’s ‘witty abusing’ of chivalric romance is tempered from the 1650s by the importation of heroic romance from French and the development of ‘serious’ romance which defines itself in opposition to its Iberian forebears. Amadis became part of the Restoration refashioning of antebellum literary culture partly thanks to English writers’ experience of exile in France and the Low Countries. After the Restoration, Amadis continued to be a popular reference point in comedies, as the archetypal text of ‘amour and adventure’ and a window onto the lost world of Caroline theatre. Behn’s Luckey Chance (1686) and Farquhar’s The Inconstant (1702) are representative of this refashioning of the literary past, while D’Urfey’s Don Quixote plays of the 1690s look back to Jacobean stage satire.

Keywords:   Heroic romance, Aphra Behn, George Farquhar, Restoration drama, canonicity, Royalism, nostalgia, Thomas D’Urfey

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