penny dreadful

penny dreadful
pl. penny dreadfuls. Chiefly Brit.
a cheap, sensational novel of adventure, crime, or violence; dime novel.

* * *

plural  penny dreadfuls,  also called  bloods 

      an inexpensive novel of violent adventure or crime that was especially popular in mid-to-late Victorian England. Penny dreadfuls were often issued in eight-page installments. The appellation, like dime novel and shilling shocker, usually connotes rather careless and second-rate writing as well as gory themes.

      The genre has, however, had its highbrow defenders, most notably the English writer G.K. Chesterton (Chesterton, G.K.). “Sensational novels are the most moral part of modern fiction,” he wrote in “Fiction as Food.” Any “literature that represents our life as dangerous and startling is truer than any literature that represents it as dubious and languid. For life is a fight and is not a conversation.”

      Among the notably prolific writers of the penny dreadful were James Malcolm Rymer (pseudonym Malcolm J. Errym) and Thomas Peckett Prest. A collection of penny dreadfuls might include such titles as Vice and Its Victim, The Death Grasp; or, A Father's Curse, and Varney, the Vampire; or, The Feast of Blood. Later penny dreadfuls were more associated with adventure than gore and were often written for boys.

      In modern parlance, penny dreadful refers to any story or periodical characterized by sensationalism and violence.

* * *

Universalium. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем написать реферат

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Penny Dreadful — (also called penny number) was a term applied to nineteenth century British fiction publications, usually lurid serial stories appearing in parts over a number of weeks, each part costing a penny. The term, however, soon came to encompass a… …   Wikipedia

  • penny dreadful — ► NOUN historical or humorous ▪ a cheap, sensational comic or storybook …   English terms dictionary

  • penny dreadful — n. [Brit. Informal] a cheap book or magazine containing stories of crime, terror, etc …   English World dictionary

  • Penny dreadful — Page couverture d un penny dreadful : Black Bess; or, The knight of the road. Un récit romancé de la vie de Dick Turpin, un sujet de fiction populaire au Royaume Uni pendant le XIXe siècle. Un penny dreadful (aussi appelé penny horrible …   Wikipédia en Français

  • penny dreadful — noun Date: circa 1873 a novel of violent adventure or crime • penny dreadful adjective …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • penny-dreadful — adjective see penny dreadful …   New Collegiate Dictionary

  • Penny Dreadful (film) — Infobox film name = Penny Dreadful caption = Penny Dreadful After Horror Fest director = Richard Brandes producer = Richard Brandes Braxton Pope Anita Sgarro Andrew Weiner writer = Diane Doniol Valcroze Arthur Flam Richard Brandes starring =… …   Wikipedia

  • Penny Dreadful (disambiguation) — A Penny Dreadful is a 19th century British fiction publication that cost a penny.Penny Dreadful may also refer to:* Penny Dreadful (film), 2006 independent horror film * Penny Dreadful (novel), second novel by Will Christopher Baer * The Penny… …   Wikipedia

  • Penny Dreadful (novel) — infobox Book | name = Penny Dreadful title orig = translator = image caption = MacAdam/Cage Publishing Reissue Cover author = Will Christopher Baer illustrator = cover artist = country = United States language = English series = genre = Novel… …   Wikipedia

  • penny dreadful — noun A cheap pulp novel produced in 19th century Britain …   Wiktionary

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”