The Rise of the English Novel

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When did the British novel rise?

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The rise of the English novel began in the Renaissance. Some of the the first major influences on the English novel were the recovery and translation of ancient Greek novels. Several of the Greek novels were translated into French by Amyot in the sixteenth century and then slightly later into English from Amyot's French. Longus' Daphnis and Chloe spawned a fashion for pastoral romance. Lyly's (sixteenth century) Euphues follows many of the conventions of the Second Sophistic. 

The novel developed more fully in the seventeenth century, with Aphra Behn being among the first novelists to actually earn a living from writing novels. By the late seventeenth and the early eighteenth century the novel was an established genre, made economically viable for writers by the passage of the first copyright statutes in 1710. 

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