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Reference

1. SPANISH LITERATURE AND ITS DIVISIONS.—At the period of the subversion of the Empire of the West, in the fifth century, Spain was invaded by the Suevi, the Alans, the Vandals, and the Visigoths. The country which had for six centuries been subjected to the dominion of the Romans, and had, adopted the language and arts of its masters, now experienced those changes in manners, opinions, military spirit, and language, which took place in the other provinces of the empire, and which, were, in fact, the origin of the nations which arose on the overthrow of the Roman power.

1. EARLY NATIONAL LITERATURE.—There are two traits of the earliest Spanish literature which so peculiarly distinguish it that they deserve to be noticed from the outset—religious faith and knightly loyalty. The Spanish national character, as it has existed from the earliest times to the present day, was formed in that solemn contest which began when the Moors landed beneath the rock of Gibraltar, and which did not end until eight centuries after, when the last remnants of the race were driven from the shores of Spain.

1. THE LUTHERAN PERIOD.—With the sixteenth century we enter upon the modern history and modern literature of Germany. The language now becomes settled, and the literature for a time becomes national. Luther and the Reformers belonged to the people, who, through them, now for the first time claimed an equality with the old estates of the realm, the two representatives of which, the emperor and the pope, were never more powerful than at this period.

1. The Language.—2. The Social Constitution of India. Brahmanism.—3. Characteristics of the Literature and its Divisions.—4. The Vedas and other Sacred Books.—5. Sanskrit Poetry; Epic; The Ramayana and Mahabharata. Lyric Poetry. Didactic Poetry; the Hitopadesa. Dramatic Poetry.—6.. History and Science.—7. Philosophy. 8. Buddhism.—9. Moral Philosophy. The Code of Manu.—10. Modern Literatures of India.—11. Education. The Brahmo Somaj.

1. EARLY LITERATURE OF THE ROMANS.—The Romans, like all other nations, had oral poetical compositions before they possessed any written literature. Cicero speaks of the banquet being enlivened by the songs of bards, in which the exploits of heroes were recited and celebrated. By these lays national pride and family vanity were gratified, and the anecdotes, thus preserved, furnished sources of early legendary history.

Of the Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries: Fontenelle, Bayle. Of the Eighteenth: Poets: La Motte, Jean Baptiste Rousseau, Voltaire, etc. Prose Writers: Montesquieu, Voltaire, Buffon, Jean Jacques Rousseau, etc. Of the Nineteenth Century: Poets: Lamartine, Victor Hugo, Musset, Vigny, etc.; Prose Writers: Chateaubriand, Michelet, George Sand, Merimee, Renan, etc.

This volume, as indicated by the title, is designed to show the way to the beginner, to satisfy and more especially to excite his initial curiosity. It affords an adequate idea of the march of facts and of ideas. The reader is led, somewhat rapidly, from the remote origins to the most recent efforts of the human mind.

Poets of the Eighteenth Century: Pope, Young, MacPherson, etc.: Prose Writers of the Eighteenth Century: Daniel Defoe, Richardson, Fielding, Swift, Sterne, David Hume. Poets of the Nineteenth Century: Byron, Shelley, the Lake Poets: Prose Writers of the Nineteenth Century: Walter Scott, Macaulay, Dickens, Carlyle.

The Vedas. Buddhist Literature. Great Epic Poems, then very Diverse, much Shorter Poems. Dramatic Literature. Moral Literature.

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