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1630s-1750s. Puritan Literature in New England. What’s a Puritan?. Puritans known as the Separatists split from the Church of England over disagreements and came to New England for religious freedom Allegiance to God/the group, not the king

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1630s 1750s


Puritan Literature in New England

What s a puritan
What’s a Puritan?

  • Puritans known as the Separatists split from the Church of England over disagreements and came to New England for religious freedom

    • Allegiance to God/the group, not the king

  • Strived to be pure in action, thought and deed and wanted to simplify Church ceremonies

Puritan values
Puritan Values

  • Self-reliance- rely on yourself even if it seems impossible

  • Industriousness- work instead of pleasure  “Puritan work ethic”

  • Temperance- moderation

  • Simplicity- simplify everything

  • Education- many Puritans believed in public education

  • Religion- Bible interpreted literally; everything that happens is God’s will; religion dominates other institutions (education/politics/society) “theocracy”

Characteristics of puritan writing
Characteristics of Puritan Writing

  • Bible= a model

  • Diaries, histories, and sermons

  • Plain/simple

  • Mostly religious

  • Clarity

  • Intelligent

Jonathan edwards 1703 1758
Jonathan Edwards (1703-1758)

  • “Sinners in the Hands of an Angry God”= 1741 sermon

  • Extremist pastor– called members of congregation out by name for sin

  • Leader of the First Great Awakening

    • Religious revival

    • Emphasized “terrors of the law” & unmerited grace

Literary elements
Literary Elements

  • Diction- word choice affects the tone

    • Ex: formal, informal, colloquial, full of slang, poetic, plain, abstract, concrete, etc.

  • Write down five strong word choices and the effects they have on the reader

  • Imagery- the use of language to evoke a picture of a person, thing, place, or experience

    • Appeals to the senses

  • List three major images in the sermon and their effects

  • Literary elements continued
    Literary Elements (continued)

    • Metaphor- figure of speech that makes a comparison between two unlike things without like, as, etc.

      • List two main metaphors from the sermon and explain how they are used

    Anne bradstreet 1612 1672
    Anne Bradstreet (1612-1672)

    • “Here Follow Some Verses Upon the Burning of our House” 1666

    • America’s first poet- came to America at 18

    • Husband was governor of Massachusetts Bay Colony

    • This poem is actually a diary entry

    • Puritan characteristics: Diary form, biblical metaphors, self-examination

    Inversion in here follow
    Inversion in “Here Follow…”

    • Inversion- a reversal of the normal English word order in a sentence or phrase, usually for poetic effect (i.e. rhyme)

    • Examples:

      • (l. 2) For sorrow near I did not look

        • I did not look near for sorrow OR I did not look for sorrow near

    • (ll. 5-6) That fearful sound of “Fire!” “Fire!”/ Let no man know is my desire.

      • My desire is let no man know the fearful sound of “Fire!” and “Fire!”

    You try
    You try!

    • (l. 27) My pleasant things in ashes lie

    • (l. 28) And them behold no more shall I

    • (ll. 21-24) When by the ruins oft I past/ My sorrowing eyes aside did cast/ and here and there the places spy/ Where oft I sat and long did lie

    Questions for here follow
    Questions for “Here Follow…”

    • What points does the speaker make to herself in her internal dialogue?

    • List three examples of inversion and then write them in their “noninverted” forms.

    • Is there a turning point to the poem? If so, where is it and what changes?

    • What is the theme of the poem?