Classicists and Romanticists

Eighteenth Century


The eighteenth century has a bad name in Dutch history, and it is unlikely that anyone has ever been tempted to award it the epithet of ‘golden’. It was a period, it is often said, which was resting at leisure on the laurels won in the preceding century, an age of stagnation and decline, of false values, corruption and sham, when powdered wigs concealed more than bald heads and bad smells were drowned in perfume. The terms used to describe it are usually of a derogatory nature like inertia, inactivity, complacency, decadence, or worse. True, there is much in the eighteenth century that looks weak in comparison with the energies displayed during the seventeenth century, yet those evaluations are too sweepingly negative and would seem to stem from moral indignation rather than from a dispassionate assessment.


Eighteenth Century Seventeenth Century Classical Drama Epic Poetry Love Poem 
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Copyright information

© Reinder P. Meijer 1978

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of LondonUK

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