Early american 1800 Early American Writers



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EARLY AMERICAN

  • 1800



Early American Writers (1200 B.C. - 1600)

Native Americans – early writings document their culture and later their clash with western civilization


Explorers – writings document their adventures in the New World

Christopher Columbus (1451-1505) Italian explorer who, financed by Queen Isabella of Spain, sought a trade route to the West Indies. His ships, the Nina, the Pinta, and the Santa Maria, landed in San Salvador in 1492.


Cabeza de Vaca (1490-1557) Landed in Florida in 1528 but became lost and wound up exploring the Gulf of Mexico and Texas for eight years.

Puritan Age (1600 - 1700)

Religious movement that sought to “purify” the Church of England. They wanted to remove all traces of the “high church” ceremony and make the service more personal and accessible to the common man.


Basic Puritan Beliefs

divine grace

Encouraged education – Harvard 1636

Wrote in the plain style – simple language with religious references, nonfiction


The Puritans sailed on Mayflower to Plymouth Rock in 1620

William Bradford


Southern Colonies

Settled Jamestown in 1607

Came to the New World for economic reasons

Modeled the European lifestyle

Established large plantations

Wrote in the ornate style: descriptive, lavish language; interested in fiction,

drama, poetry

Revolutionary Period/Age of Reason (1750 - 1800)

Influenced by a European movement called the Enlightenment


Rationalist Beliefs

      • Arrive at truth through reason

      • Free thought

      • Power of the mind

      • Order

      • Deism

God created the universe but doesn’t interfere

Universe has rules which can be discovered through reason

People are basically good

God’s goal for us is happiness and we can best worship him

through compassion for our fellow man

History shows progress toward perfection


Examples of rationalist American writers: Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin

Broadsides: sheets of paper covered with anonymous poems, songs, and essays


The Great Awakening (1739-1742): a wave of religious enthusiasm that swept through New England

Jonathan Edwards


Conflict between Puritans and Rationalists

Cotton Mather (1663-1728) Puritan minister who played a role in the Salem Witch Trials because of his belief in witches and warnings about

spectral evidence

Studied medicine and theology at Harvard

Believed in inoculation against smallpox.

EARLY AMERICAN


  • 1800



Early American Writers (1200 B.C. - 1600)

Native Americans – early writings document their culture and later their clash with western civilization


Explorers – writings document their adventures in the New World

Cabeza de Vaca (1490-1557) Landed in Florida in 1528 but became lost and wound up exploring the Gulf of Mexico and Texas for eight years.



Puritan Age (1600 - 1700)

Religious movement that sought to “purify” the Church of England. They wanted to remove all traces of the “high church” ceremony and make the service more personal and accessible to the common man.


Basic Puritan Beliefs

      • An omnipotent God

      • Saw life as a pilgrimage to salvation

      • Most are damned through original sin but could be saved through

divine grace

      • Our behavior is a reflection of our soul

      • God-centered society (theocracy)

      • Interpreted the Bible literally and saw it as a guide to life

Encouraged education – Harvard 1636

Wrote in the plain style – simple language with religious references, nonfiction


The Puritans sailed on Mayflower to Plymouth Rock in 1620

William Bradford was the leader of Plymouth.


Southern Colonies

Settled Jamestown in 1607

Came to the New World for economic reasons

Modeled the European lifestyle

Established large plantations

Wrote in the ornate style: descriptive, lavish language; interested in fiction,

drama, poetry
Revolutionary Period/Age of Reason (1750 - 1800)

Influenced by a European movement called the Enlightenment


Rationalist Beliefs

      • Arrive at truth through reason

      • Free thought

      • Power of the mind

      • Order

      • Deism

Deist beliefs



      • God created the universe but doesn’t interfere

      • Universe has rules which can be discovered through reason

      • People are basically good

      • God’s goal for us is happiness and we can best worship him through compassion for our fellow man

      • History shows progress toward perfection

Examples of rationalist American writers: Thomas Jefferson, Ben Franklin



Broadsides: sheets of paper covered with anonymous poems, songs, and essays
The Great Awakening (1739-1742) was a wave of religious enthusiasm that swept through New England. Jonathan Edwards was the most famous minister involved in the Great Awakening.


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