Romantic literature originated in Europe the middle of the 18th century. It was an uprising against the aristocratic, social and political norms and as a rebuttal against the uncreative (science) and a justification of nature in art and literature. Romantic literature allowed society the chance to feel emotions. This permitted society the feelings of consternation, terror, and love while reading for the first time of uncultivated nature.
In 1764 Horace Walpole combined horror and romance in his novel The Castle of Ortranto. He effectively created the gothic novel. Tyrants, villains, bandits, maniacs, Byronic heroes, persecuted maidens, femme’s fatales, madwomen, magicians, vampires, werewolves, monsters demons, revenants, ghosts, perambulating skeletons, wandering lew, and the devil are all characters included in Gothic fiction.
As I mentioned, Gothic literature contains Byronic heroes. Byronic heroes were used to describe Lord Byron by his jilted lover, Lady Caroline. She would describe him as “mad, bad and dangerous to know” (Wikipedia). The term reflects a flawed character and has some of the same characteristics of a Gothic character, with more of Byron’s “negative” characteristics thrown into the mix. Such character istics would include: bipolar, hates social norms, outcast, sexuality (homosexual, prostitute), cynical, loner, and self-destructive (Wikipedia).
The features of Gothic fiction are both psychological and physical. They tend to play with a person’s mind and psyche. The features that can be found in Gothic fiction are supernatural features such as ghost, secrets and curses passed down over generations. Architecture plays a large role in Gothic fiction. It is the haunted houses, castles, and medieval gardens.
Ideas that are present in Gothic fiction are generally ones that go against Catholicism, predominantly Roman Catholic. It also can include romanticism of the medieval past, melodramas and parodies.
When romanticism was...