Period of English Literature

Here the “period of Age of English literature” refers to a specific time duration. In this time frame the literature in the English language displays particular characteristics, styles, and themes that are reflective of the prevailing cultural, social, and historical context. English literature is typically categorized into different age to help readers better understand and study its development over time period. The major periods of English literature along with the approximate date are given below.

1. Old English Period also known as (Anglo-Saxon) Period

  • Anglos Sexon Period starts from 450 AD and Lasts upto 1066 AD.
  • Notable works: “Beowulf”

2. Middle English Period

  • Middle English Period from 1066 AD to 1500 AD
  • Notable works of this period is “The Canterbury Tales” by Geoffrey Chaucer

3. Renaissance Period

  • Renaissance Period from 1500 AD to 1660 AD
  • Notable works: William Shakespeare’s plays, such as “Hamlet,” “Macbeth,” and “Romeo and Juliet.” Etc.

4. Jacobean Period

  • Jacobean Period from 1603 AD to 1625 AD
  • Notable works: “The Tempest” by William Shakespeare

5. Caroline Period

  • Caroline Period from 1625 AD to 1649 AD
  • Notable works: John Milton’s “Paradise Lost”6.

6. Restoration Period

  • Restoration Period from 1660 AD to 1700 AD
  • Notable works: John Dryden’s plays, such as “All for Love”

7. Augustan Age or (Neoclassical Period)

  • Neoclassical Period from 1700 AD to 1745 AD
  • Notable works: Alexander Pope’s “The Rape of the Lock,” Jonathan Swift’s “Gulliver’s Travels”

8. Romantic Period

  • Romantic Period from 1785 AD to 1830 AD
  • Notable works: William Wordsworth’s “Lines Composed a Few Miles Above Tintern Abbey,” Jane Austen’s “Pride and Prejudice” etc.

9. Victorian Period

  • Victorian Period from 1837 AD to 1901 AD
  • Notable works: Charles Dickens’ “Great Expectations,” Emily Brontë’s “Wuthering Heights”

10. Edwardian Period

  • Edwardian Period from 1901 AD to 1945 AD
  • Notable works: E.M. Forster’s “A Room with a View”

12. Modernist Period

  • Modernist Period starts from 1910 AD to 1950 AD
  • Notable works: James Joyce’s “Ulysses,” T.S. Eliot’s “The Waste Land”

13. Postmodern Period

  • Postmodern Period started from 1950 AD to present (Ongoing).
  • Notable works: Salman Rushdie’s “Midnight’s Children,” Margaret Atwood’s “The Handmaid’s Tale”etc.

Please note that these period dates are approximate, and there can be some overlap between age. Additionally, the literary periods may vary based on the source and the scholar’s interpretation.