The Castle of Otranto

The Castle of Otranto First published pseudonymously in The Castle of Otranto purported to be a translation of an Italian story of the time of the crusades In it Walpole attempted as he declared in the Preface to th

First published pseudonymously in 1764, The Castle of Otranto purported to be a translation of an Italian story of the time of the crusades In it Walpole attempted, as he declared in the Preface to the Second Edition, to blend the two kinds of romance the ancient and the modern Crammed with invention, entertainment, terror, and pathos, the novel was an immediate succeFirst published pseudonymously in 1764, The Castle of Otranto purported to be a translation of an Italian story of the time of the crusades In it Walpole attempted, as he declared in the Preface to the Second Edition, to blend the two kinds of romance the ancient and the modern Crammed with invention, entertainment, terror, and pathos, the novel was an immediate success and Walpole s own favorite among his numerous works The novel is reprinted here from a text of 1798, the last that Walpole himself prepared for the press.

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The Castle of Otranto

  1. Horatio Walpole, 4th Earl of Orford also known as Horace Walpole was an English art historian, man of letters, antiquarian and Whig politician He is now largely remembered for Strawberry Hill, the home he built in Twickenham, south west London where he revived the Gothic style some decades before his Victorian successors, and for his Gothic novel, The Castle of Otranto Along with the book, his literary reputation rests on his Letters, which are of significant social and political interest He was the son of Sir Robert Walpole, and cousin of Lord Nelson.

738 Reply to “The Castle of Otranto”

  1. This granddaddy of all Gothics is still worth a read It has its flaws, but Walpole s style is crisp and economical, and the book itself is mercifully brief Manfred possesses all the important features of the classic gothic hero that Mrs Radcliffe and others would later use to great advantage, and the initial scenes particularly the surrealistic tableau of Manfred s heir flattened by a gigantic helmet and the exciting sequence of Isabella s flight through the castle s subterranean darkness are st [...]

  2. CLASSICS can teach us a great deal about things like history, culture, customs and different literary styles From this book I learned that classics CAN ALSO REALLY, REALLY SUCK Now before continuing, I would like to be clear that when I say this book sucked, I don t mean it was well written but kinda dry and boring sucked No, I mean planets and stars being pulled toward the event horizon of a black hole suckage In other words, suckage on a grand and towering scale Now, in fairness, it should be [...]

  3. By today s standard s The Castle of Otranto is a ridiculous piece of melodrama However, when it was originally published it was absolute dynamite.It had the power to shock and dazzle its earliest of readers They were innocent and unused to horror thus, it was utterly compelling for them Such a thing is comparable to early cinema Audiences were thrilled by silent movie car chases and actions scenes If we watch them today they are unexciting and laughable Truly great literature is timeless Franken [...]

  4. WARNING 1001 BOOK THAT THE WRITERS OF THE 1001 BOOKS LIST WANTED TO TORTURE YOU WITH BEFORE YOU DIE NB do not assume that said death will be unrelated to the reading of this book boredom kills, people This book is very Shakespearian in style and therefore metaphorically and allegorically weighty despite being such a short, light paperback book I was suckered into reading this because it was a short read You know how it is, on a whim sometime ago Christmas 2009 , you manfully pledge to read all t [...]

  5. The Otranto Observer Prince Gets Squashed by Giant Airborne Helmet Full News on Page Six Lord of Otranto Says Sorry, the Castle Ain t Mine FULL Interview with Covergirl Isabella He was Never the One for Me Love Advice from Star Struck Pair Theodore and Matilda Tell All How YOU Can Find True Love in Just Ten Seconds Jerome and Hippolita s Faithful s Corner Why Entering a Monastery s the Only Way to Go The Commoner s Chronicle Bianca and her Fellows Tell Why THEY RE the Ones Who Saved Otranto Phew [...]

  6. Having spent three years in Bloomington getting drunk with fiction writers, I feel that I came dangerously close to losing my ability to appreciate trash But, thankfully, not so _The Castle of Otranto_, by Horace Walpole, is not only trash, but ground breaking, historical, trend setting trash It is lauded as the first Gothic novel in English published, anonymously at first, in 1764 And what a remarkable heap of words it is _The Castle of Otranto_ is preposterous, both in content and structure ne [...]

  7. 2.5 stars rounded upShovel loads of gothicness with a daft plot and formulaic characters this is regarded as the first gothic novel Walpole tries to create a new genre quite consciously by combining the new romance style of eighteenth century novels and the older tradition of fantastical tales Walpole also introduces a number of gothic tropes for the first time strange and eerie goings on, things that go bump in the night, rapacious and predatory men, beautiful and endangered heroines and a spot [...]

  8. El castillo es el personaje principal de la novela y no Manfredo Lo sobrenatural, el g tico y lo terror fico empez aqu , en 1764.

  9. Prince Manfred of Otranto in Italy,is looking forward to the wedding of his only son Conrad.The family name must continue In these violent times the era of the Crusades ,Italian politics dictates that noblemen have sons, to leave all their land and wealth It doesn t matter that Conrad is only fifteen and sickly.The family of the Prince is composed of the son Conrad,Matilda the daughter, three years older than her brother and the pious wife of Manfred ,Hippolita.Isabella is the intended bride, a [...]

  10. Although this is a rather tedious novel which almost reads like an absurd parody of itself today, you can still recognize the stamps of what eventually became Gothic literature Occult rituals, madness, unseen violence, supernatural events, melodrama, sexual perversion, and so on and so on It seems rather tiresome today, but that might be because of all that it has inspired, and so many authors who, working in its image, have surpassed it.

  11. Excerpt From Horace Walpole The Castle of Otranto iBooks It was suggested by a dream from which he said he waked one morning, and of which all I could recover was, that I had thought myself in an ancient castle a very natural dream for a head like mine, filled with Gothic story , and that on the uppermost banister of a great staircase I saw a gigantic hand in armour In the evening I sat down and began to write, without knowing in the least what I intended to say or relate Note This book is avail [...]

  12. We are all reptiles, miserable, sinful creatures It is piety alone that can distinguish us from the dust whence we sprung, and whither we must return.The reviews of this pioneer work are a caravan of groans how sophisticated we ve since become with our forensics and our shape shfting very meta protagonists I may shudder and say, whoa, and allow the blush to fade from our consternation Otranto is ridiculous, sure, but it is damn charming Anyone ever encountered a contrivance or laughable twist in [...]

  13. I liked one sentence from The Castle of Otranto In the middle of the tyrant Manfred s long ass soliloquy to an enormous retinue of knights and other attendants a rival nobleman has sent to pay a visit, we get this The knights gazed on each other, wondering where this would end.

  14. This novel is the first Gothic horror story, written in 1764 It is a 3 swooner on the humorous Guardian newspaper gothic rating scale shown below with Hippolita swooning twice and Matilda once.It also is set in a cursed or haunted castle in a foreign land with people who talk in an outdated manner other criteria of the Guardian newspaper for classic Gothic horror stories In fact, many of what we now consider stereotypes of Gothic horror had their origins in this book A quick and satisfactorily s [...]

  15. The infant of gothic novels, The Castle of Otranto begins with plentiful theatrics and moves at a refreshingly quick pace This was a very short, entertaining book full of bizarre and supernatural happenings, lots of drama, a villainous prince, gracious princesses and perhaps one changeable princess , comic attendants, and mysterious strangers An ancient prophecy shadows the castle and its inhabitants, and the reader gets a glimpse of the prophecy coming to fruition in the very first chapter Many [...]

  16. Taken out of historical context, The Castle of Otranto is a fun escape into knights, maidens, curses, magic, dynasties, rivalries, and terror It was, as Horace Walpole argued in one of his introductions, an attempt to establish a new gothic style of writing In this way, the novel is a comic thriller It presents realistic reactions to imaginary actions, and it injects comedy to counter to grim tragedy But taken in historical context, the novel seems to respond to formative events in Walpole s lif [...]

  17. I while ago I read Northanger Abbey and while I enjoyed it I also felt like missing out on half of the jokes because while was vaguely aware that Gothic novels meant scary old castles, fair maidens and old curses I had never read one of them So I eventually decided to read one after buying it, putting it on my tbr pile and forgetting about it again till yesterday.As it happens The Castle of Otranto is actually the first novel that in its second edition was published as Gothic Novel and wow It ce [...]

  18. Leggere oggi Il Castello di Otranto, definito il capostipite della letteratura gotica , fa quasi sorridere perch la nostra sensibilit di accogliere il terrificante si notevolmente addomesticata, per bisognerebbe leggerlo con gli occhi e la testa di un lettore del 700 perch nel 700 fu scritto e a quell epoca fu una narrazione di rottura, di novit ed strano pensare come, nel secolo dei lumi che giungevano a rischiarare le superstizioni e le false credenze, si sentisse l esigenza di voltarsi al pas [...]

  19. Portents and parables Tainted heritage Ghouliess and ghosties and long leggedy beasties This was just for fun I was hoping for something quick and melodramatic After reading a paragraph, I knew it would fit the bill The quick part became a lil sludgy sometimes The language was sometimes less than clear It could be the high diction, or simple word choice or it could be the ebook edition I read was in need of another round of proofing As many a reviewer has stated, this is it, the granddady of all [...]

  20. Good old Horace Walpole Like any literary figure, historians are niggling over the is he or isn t he details, but why isn t anyone looking into his freakish obsession with Gothic castles His goal I am going to build a little Gothic castle at Strawberry Hill , and he asked his friends for any fragments of old painted glass, armour, or anything And thus was born Strawberry Hill, the baby Castle of Otranto.Otranto the book came from that foggy time when novels, while trying to present themselves as [...]

  21. Horace Walpole s 1764 Castle of Otranto is generally given credit as the first Gothic novel, which makes it interesting from a historical perspective, especially if you re into Gothic stuff, which I totally am because whee, virgins fleeing evil men in drafty castles in their nightgowns Which this book totally has, and also enormous helmets falling from the sky and crushing dudes, which I can t decide if that s a bummer of a way to go or not From a literature perspective, it s pretty much average [...]

  22. Another read for my research into early horror as I work on my own supernatural Victorian tale, but in the end I have to agree with Lovecraft s assessment in his Supernatural Horror in Literature that Walpole s style is insipid and full of silly melodrama It s not hard to see why it was so influential, as it introduced a great number of interesting ideas and symbols, but like so many books that inspired a genre, its the fact that original author did so little with those ideas that left room for [...]

  23. Ugh this book If I hadn t had to read this for university, I would not have managed it past the first page I ve seen a lot of 4 and 5 star reviews of this book Why I don t understand This is considered one of the best Gothic fiction novels, but all it did was bore me Then piss me off It is not ours to make election for ourselves heaven, our fathers, and our husbands, must decide for us I just wanted to grab Hippolita and shake her while screaming GET.AIP Im so glad women aren t like this any Spi [...]

  24. Otranto atosu yaz lan ilk gotik eser olarak kabul ediliyor Kitab n kurgusunda kullan lan geler gelene i devam ettiren yazarlara rnek olmu Fakat kitap gotik zelli i a s ndan g n m z okurunu tatmin etmiyor Okurken gereksiz bir karma an n i inde gibi hissediyorsunuz T re ba lamak isteyenlerin farkl eserlere bakmas n tavsiye ederim, ok isterseniz Otranto atosu nu daha sonra araya s k t r rs n z.

  25. I LOVE THIS BOOK I was given this book to read with the preface, I was not a fan, but I have a feeling you d like this And all of a sudden I was in an old world made new to me.The Castle of Otranto has a history as interesting and strange as the tale w in it s pages Know as the first Gothic Novel Gothic fiction is a genre of literature that combines horror, romance and mystery offset by elements of fantasy , the book was purported to be a translation based on a manuscript printed near Naples in [...]

  26. Golly, that was fun The plot and over the top language make The Castle of Otranto just sufficiently absurd to keep the comedy front and centre stage, Monty Python or Mervyn Peake than Nora Roberts The young prince squashed by a giant helmet in the first few pages is still one of the funniest scenes in literature Many writers have tried unsuccessfully to copy or satirise The Castle of Otranto What Horace Walpole did that these second liners missed is provide a decent story written in plain, but [...]

  27. To be honest, I thought I was reading an adventure novel So it was all fun and melodrama until the ending And the ending sort of colored the rest of the book for me Checking , I was surprised to discover that this book is a Gothic novel I can see how people in the 18th century found the actions and main villain horrific, but in the 21 century the novel feels camp and I may read this again to see if my rating changes The writing is nothing spectacular, but I m glad to have read Walpole.

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