“Gothic”, a term primarily used to describe the style of architecture that flourished in Western Europe during the twelfth and sixteenth centuries. However, the word “Gothic” was originally familiarised be Italian Renaissance writers as a term for all art and architecture of the middle ages, which they recognised as comparable to the works of the barbarian Goths. The Gothic period or last medieval era immediately followed the Romanesque style, which is now universally considered as one of Europe’s outstanding artistic Genres.
Gothic idiom reached its greatest heights of expression in the of of Literature. The style of writing was most popular in the late 18th and early 19th centuries, and still prevails today. The revival of the gothic phenomenon coincided with the rise of a type of romantic fiction that predominated English Literature through out the late 18th century. The principle elements were violence, the grotesque, the super-natural, and were often pictured in ruined Gothic castles or Abbes. Such buildings were characterised by pointed arches, ribbed vaults and narrow, flying buttresses, which constituted an extremely heavy structure.Order now
In that period, Authors of “the Gothic” emphasised mystery and horror, encouraging the reader to experience the ghastly trills that would prevail in ghost-haunted rooms, under-ground passages and upon secret stairways. Some principle writers of this period include Horace Walpole, Ann Radcliff, Mary Shelly and Edgar Allen Poe. The earliest Gothic romance was a noel by Horace Walpole called “Castle of Otranto” in 1764. This novel has been continually critisised by numerous critics for its sensationalism, Melodramatic qualities, and its play on the supernatural. The Genre drew many o its intense images from the graveyard poets Gray and Thompson, intermingling a landscape of vast dark forests with vegetation that borders on extensive, concealed ruins with horrific rooms, monasteries, and a forlorn character who excels at the melancholy.
The novel produced a rather different meaning to a “romance” story. A story in the middle ages was an unusual or exciting fictitious story about knights and their ladies. The meaning has changed from being an adventure story with elements of love added in, to being a story almost completely about love. Horace Warpole conjured up a medieval word o passions set in melodramatic settings. In his stories, good and evil forces were brought into conflict and over the whole story looms the suggestion that irrationality and evil will destroy civilisation.
His novels challenged the sensible confidence of readers. Warpole’s Gothic romance immediately encouraged a number of imitators, among them Ann Radcliff, “The Mysteries of Udolpho” (1796) where a persecuted heroine survives numerous assaults to arrive at a happy ending in the arms of a handsome young man. Radcliff gained a reputaion for her tlaes of terror and suspense in which apparently super-natural occurrences are explained in the last chapters by natural or normal causes. Her tales are characterised by mystery plots and poetically intense landscapes. Her books demonstrate her ability to create psychological atmospheres o horror and terror, and this influenced later Gothic heroes such as Mary Shelly, “Frankenstein”, and Edgar Allen Poe, “The Raven”.
The Gothic Genre wilted under parodies such as Jane Austins “Northanger Abbey” (1818) but influenced later writers like Bram Stoker in “Dracula” (1897). Poe was one of the great American Gothic writers in the 19th century. He is well known for his tales of the mysterious and macabre. He has been described as “morbid, passionate and hyper-sensitive”.
Among Poe’s poetic output, about a dozen poems are remarkable for their flawless literary construction and their haunting themes and rhymes. In “The Raven”, for example, the narrator is overwhelmed by melancholy and omens of death. Poe’ extraordinary manipulation of rhythm and sound is particularly evident in “The Bells”, a poem that seems to echo with the chiming of metallic instruments and “The Sleeper”, which reproduces the state of drowsiness. “Lenore” and “Annabel Lee” are verse lamentations of the deaths of beautiful young women.
I have noticed Poe’s remarkable literary construction as he uses the fewest words to describe exactly his intention and then relies upon the imagination to believe in the images and apprehensions that he powerfully builds. This is apparent in his first Gothic Novel, “The Fall of the House of Usher” (1839). This story contains many ideas which are typical of the Gothic genre: premature burial, the idea of the living dead, the line between life and death and acute bodily illnesses, here shown in something ordinary and not frightening, and weave elements into it to make it terrifying. He shows this in “The Raven” (1845).