A large number of literary works came out during this period, which included parody, fables, melodrama, rhyming with couplets, satire, letters, diaries, novels, and essays. More emphasis was given to grammar and etymology (study of words).
Poetry too was revamped and saw the beginning of rhyme schemes. The iambic pentameter was one of the popular forms of poetry, preferred by the poets and the listeners. Odes and pastorals became the new means for exchanging ideas.
The poems were mostly realistic and satirical, in which, John Dryden reigned supreme. He further divided poetry into three heads, that of fables, political satire, and doctrinal poems. You will not find any spiritual bias, moral highness, or philosophy in these poems, which became the signature style of the Restoration Era.
Writers such as Pope, Dryden, Daniel Defoe, Swift, and Addison were the major contributors to this era. Dryden’s attempts at satiric verse were highly admired by many generations. This era was also called the Age of Pope due to his noteworthy contributions.
Important works such as Burke’s, A Philosophical Inquiry into the Origins of Our Ideas on the Sublime and Beautiful, Johnson’s, The Rambler, and Goldsmith’s, The Vicar of Wakefield are still read.
Samuel Johnson (1709-1784) gave a massive literary contribution, which till date is a great boon to one an all. And that is the Dictionary of the English Language, which was first published in the year 1755. Though many similar books were used prior to this book, the dictionary in particular was the one that was most popularly used and admired, right until the printing of the Oxford English Dictionary in 1928.
John Dryden (1631 – 1700), To My Lord Chancellor and Marriage a la Mode
Alexander Pope (1688 – 1744), Translation of the Iliad, Pastorals and An Essay on Criticism
Jonathan Swift (1667 – 1745), Gulliver’s Travels
Daniel Defoe (1660 – 1731), Robinson Crusoe
Samuel Johnson (1709 – 1784), A Dictionary of the English Language