Tag: english literature

Next to reading Jane Austen's novels, we love watching adaptations of them - but how historically accurate has the dialogue been over the past few years?

Love and language in Jane Austen adaptions

Jane Austen achieved some success as an author during her own lifetime. Her first published novel, Sense and Sensibility (1811), was reviewed well and sold out of copies after about a year. Her second, Pride and Prejudice also sold well as did Mansfield Park, followed by Emma. She completed six novels in all, but the […]

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Virginia Woolf quotations

5 beautiful Virginia Woolf quotations

25 January 1882 was the day on which Virginia Woolf was born. To celebrate the birthday of the renowned novelist, essayist, and feminist icon, we’ve taken a look in Oxford Essential Quotations to pick out some of her most memorable moments. “One cannot think well, love well, sleep well, if one has not dined well.” […]

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Shakespeare adaptations

Quiz: film adaptations of Shakespeare

There have been dozens of films adapted from Shakespeare’s plays, but some are trickier to recognize than others. Take our quiz and see if you can match the movie to the play – and let us know how you do!   William Shakespeare was an English dramatist, poet, and actor who is often considered the […]

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Shakespearean heroines

Which of Shakespeare’s heroines are you?

Are you a witty Beatrice or a wicked Lady Macbeth? More like Viola or Desdemona? Take our quiz to find out which of Shakespeare’s heroine you are – though we don’t advise that you necessarily live your life accordingly.   William Shakespeare was an English dramatist, poet, and actor who is often considered the greatest […]

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Thomas Hardy

Which character from Thomas Hardy’s novels are you?

Whether you’ve been enjoying the recent film of Far From the Madding Crowd or have been a life-long fan of The Mayor of Casterbridge, a question has probably crossed your mind: ‘which Thomas Hardy character am I most like?’ Wonder no longer; take our quiz and discover the answer. Find out whether you’re headstrong Michael […]

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stormy sea

Herman Melville’s Moby-Dick-tionaries

Herman Melville’s whaling adventure Moby-Dick (1851) begins far away from the ocean. The first character we meet is an Usher to a grammar school (a junior school) who supplies an etymology of the word whale. The Usher’s etymology is the first indication to readers that there will be two parallel quests in this whale of a […]

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bubbles_large

From muggle to whizzpopper: invented words in children’s literature

When Roald Dahl invented words such as lickswishy, which describes the way English boys taste to giants in The BFG (1982), and whizzpoppers, the enjoyable propelling farts produced by the same giants after they drink frobskottle, he was following in a tradition among children’s writers of coining neologisms that dates back at least as far […]

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Africa

Doris Lessing: another world of words

Doris Lessing (22 October 1919 – 17 November 2013) was an astonishing wordsmith, as any reader of her many novels, stories, plays, and poems would attest – and the genesis of this talent can be seen in her upbringing and surroundings. Childhood memories She was five years old when her family emigrated in 1925 to […]

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