Reading List 3: Restoration and Eighteenth-Century Literature

Faculty Committee: Bernadette Andrea, Elizabeth Heckendorn Cook, Rachael King, William Warner

It is assumed that students taking the first qualifying exam in the Restoration and Eighteenth Century will be familiar not only with the following primary texts but also with the critical and interpretive issues concerning these texts and the period at large.

Required selections may be found as indicated:
BL = British Literature 1640-1789, An Anthology. 2d Edition. Ed. Robert DeMaria, Jr. Blackwell, 2001.
ECP = Eighteenth-Century Poetry, An Annotated Anthology. Eds. David Fairer and Christine Gerrard. Blackwell, 1999
AB = Oroonoko, The Rover, and Other Works. Ed. Janet Todd. Penguin, 1992.
RED = Broadview Anthology of Restoration & Early Eighteenth-Century Drama. Ed. J. Douglas Canfield. Broadview, 2001.
DC = Digitized and available online, consult with the Staff Graduate Adviser

Students are encouraged to read widely in the relevant secondary literature.


Drama (in RED unless noted)

John Dryden. Marriage à la Mode or All for Love ; PC: “Preface” to An Evening’s Love

William Wycherley. The Country Wife

William Congreve. The Way of the World

Aphra Behn. The RoverorThe Lucky Chance

John Gay. The Beggar's Opera

Oliver Goldsmith. She Stoops to Conquer ; (DC): “An Essay on the Theater”

Richard Brinsley Sheridan. The School for Scandal



John Bunyan. Pilgrim's Progress, Part One

Eliza Haywood. BL: Fantomina

Daniel Defoe. Robinson Crusoe or Moll Flanders

Samuel Richardson. Pamela or Clarissa

Henry Fielding. Joseph Andrews or Tom Jones

Charlotte Lennox. The Female Quixote

Oliver Goldsmith. The Vicar of Wakefield or Tobias Smollett. The Expedition of Humphry Clinker

Laurence Sterne. Tristram Shandy

Horace Walpole. Castle of Otranto

Ann Radcliffe The Italian or Mysteries of Udolpho

Frances Burney. Evelina

Jane Austen. Sense and Sensibility


Poetry (BL unless noted)

John Wilmot, Second Earl of Rochester. “The Imperfect Enjoyment”; “A Satyr Against Reason and Mankind”; “The Disabled Debauchee”; “Lampoon”; “Signior Dildo”; “A Satyr on Charles II”

Anne Finch. “The Introduction”; “Life’s Progress”; “Adam Posed”; “The Petition for an Absolute Retreat”; “To the Nightingale”; “A Poem for … Catharine Tufton”; “The Atheist and the Acorn”; “The Unequal Fetters”; “The Answer [to Pope’s ‘Impromptu’]”; “The Spleen: A Pindaric Poem.”; ECP: “A Nocturnal Rêverie”

Lady Mary Wortley Montagu. “The Lover”; “The Reasons that Induced Dr. S- …”; “To the Memory of Mr. Congreve”; ECP: “Saturday. The Small-Pox”; “Epistle from Arthur Gray the Footman”; “Verses Address’d to the Imitator of Horace” (with Lord Hervey); “Verses on Self-Murder”

James Thomson. DC: “Rule, Britannia”

Stephen Duck. From “The Thresher’s Labor”

Mary Collier. “The Woman’s Labor”

Thomas Gray. “Sonnet [on the death of Richard West]”; “Ode on the Death of a Favourite Cat”; “An Elegy Wrote in a Country Church Yard”; “The Progress of Poesy”; (ECP): “Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College”

William Collins. “Ode to Fear”; “Ode on the Poetical Character”; “Ode to Evening”

Oliver Goldsmith. “The Deserted Village”

William Cowper. “On a Goldfinch Starved to Death in his Cage”; “To the Immortal Memory of the Halibut …”; “The Negro’s Complaint”; “On a Spaniel Called Beau”; “Beau’s Reply”; “On the Ice Islands”; “The Castaway”


Prose writers (BL unless noted)

Thomas Hobbes. Leviathan, Ch XIII: “Of the Natural Condition of Mankind …”

John Locke. An Essay concerning … Civil Government, excerpts from Chs. 1, 2, 4, 5

Mary Astell. From A Serious Proposal to the Ladies

Daniel Defoe. “An Academy for Women”; “The Shortest-Way with the Dissenters”; “A True Relation of the Apparition of one Mrs. Veal”

Addison and Steele. Spectators 1, 2, 10, 11 (BL), 62, 112, 122, 287, 411-414 (DC)

David Hume. “Of the Liberty of the Press”; “My Own Life”

Edmund Burke. A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origin of our Ideas of the Sublime and the Beautiful, Part 2, Sections 1-5, 13-16

Edward Gibbon. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, from Vol. II, Ch. 23

Bernard Mandeville. From A Modest Defence of Public Stews …

Edward Young. Conjectures on Original Composition (DC)

James Boswell. From The Life of Johnson (BL); from the Journal (DC)

Olaudah Equiano. From The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano


John Dryden (BL unless noted)

Absalom and Achitophel

"Song for St. Cecilia's Day"

"Mac Flecknoe"

(DC): "Essay of Dramatic Poesy"


Aphra Behn (AB unless noted)

Oroonoko; “Love Armed”; “Epilogue to Sir Patient Fancy”; “The Disappointment”; “To Mr. Creech …on his Excellent Translation of Lucretius”; “A Letter to Mr. Creech at Oxford”; “Song: On her Loving Two Equally”; “To the fair Clarinda …”; “On Desire”; “A Pindaric Poem to the Reverend Doctor Burnet”

(BL): “A Letter to a Brother of the Pen in Tribulation”


Jonathan Swift (BL unless noted)

A Tale of a Tub

Gulliver's Travels

"A Modest Proposal"

"The Lady's Dressing Room"; "A Beautiful Young Nymph Going to Bed"

(ECP): "Verses on the Death of Dr. Swift"; "Stella's Birthday 1727"

(DC): "To Stella Visiting Me in My Sickness"; "An Argument Against the Abolishing of Christianity in England"


Alexander Pope (ECP unless noted)

The Dunciad, Bk I (1743); “Eloisa to Abelard”; "Windsor-Forest”; “An Epistle to a Lady. Of the Characters of Women”; “To Richard Boyle, Earl of Burlington. Of the Use of Riches”; “Epistle to Dr. Arbuthnot”

(BL): The Rape of the Lock

(DC): An Essay on Criticism;An Essay on Man and “The Design”


Samuel Johnson (BL unless noted)


From the Preface to The Plays of William Shakespeare

From the Preface to The Dictionary of the English Language

"The Vanity of Human Wishes"

(DC): Rambler, No. 4; from Lives of the Poets: “Milton”; “Dryden”; “Pope”


Revised 08/03