The Castle of Otranto & Northanger Abbey Comparison paper.
When Northanger Abbey was written is very nsure, fore this book was possibly thought to be published in 1815 but it was written earlier. Otranto was written before Northanger Abbey, and there are less Gothic themes in Northanger. In Northanger Abbey there are different styles of clothing you can imagine by the reading than in The Castle of Otranto. There’s characters that you see that are wearing beautiful Princess dresses, and Manfred the Prince is wearing a Prince’s jacket or garment. There’s Fredric the Priest wears a robe and rope for a belt.
In Northanger Abbey, General Tilney you can imagine him wearing a more modern suit. Like a dress jacket, slacks, and even a military kind of boot, of that time era. As well Catherine from Northanger Abbey would be wearing a dress with flowers, and even in her hand an umbrella for shade from the sun. There are two different stories here, that make up one novel more Gothic than the other. The Castle of Otranto is taking place in a more medieval time. Even though this book was written in 1764, the time of the story takes era in the 13th-14th century.
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In Northanger Abbey the time of this era is in the 17th-18th century, but in a very modern time where civilization is classy and has tea at noon. Dumoulin 2. In the beginning of “The Castle of Otranto” Manfred, Prince of Otranto, had a son and a daughter. Manfred’s sons name was Conrad, and the daughters name was Matilda. She was not at all cared for from her father Manfred as much as Conrad was. Manfred already had Conrad set up to be married to Isabella. Manfred worked out a deal with Isabellas father, the marquis of Vicenza.
As the novel goes on into a dark and supernatural story, there are a lot of strange and questionable situations that happen. To a lot of the characters in this Gothic time, they experience a lot of difficult situations that are hard to comprehend. Manfred’s son Conrad gets killed by a helmet that falls from the sky. (P. 3) Manfred is not a good man to begin with, and has a very dark and hateful persona that grows more into a dark and evil way that he winds up owning up to. Manfred is the dark prince, in my opinion. His ways get the best of him in the end, but as well it does not change who and what he knows that he will become.
Manfred is devilish and evil and has more than a single ounce of evil as an experienced antagonist. This is Gothic because only in story’s are the Kings or Princes evil like this. Novels like this are Gothic because the main evil character s always trying to have control of everything. Walpole describes this conflict of Manfred’s character as a number of forces that push Manfred to behave and act as he does. Manfred desperately seeks to keep and maintain power, and within his limits of his own world. He knows that the only way to gain this lies in the making of his male heir within.
The means that he forces, that of incest, murder and lies, distinguish him as uniquely villainous, desperate and a vile man. Manfred will do and say anything to justify his right of power. For instance he believes that divorcing his wife to have a son with Isabella was perfectly cceptable. Manfred’s behavior reveals his motives but also his cause of those motives and of that desperation that he has for parallel societal conflict, between the aristocratic power and religious virtue. Dumoulin 3. In this novel “Otranto”, Manfred has a son that gets killed and no one knows how or why.
His son is to be married to Isabella, but things go a different direction when she finds out that Manfred wants to marry her now. When Manfred pursues Isabella in a sexually way, his demand for a divorce from his wife Hippolita seems unreal, due to the incestuous nature of both relationships. Manfred’s logic seems to be lost and his justification, and his reasoning for his actions makes very little sense. What makes this Gothic is, this is a dark way of living, and how evil it is to live this way. From the novel “Northanger Abbey’, “General Tilney is accurately, if understandingly, described by Mrs.
Morland as a strange man (Austen 29). In this story there is a character named Catherine Morland who is a tom-boy, that is a girl that is becoming a woman. As she is becoming a woman, she is pulled between both boys and playing sports, like Cricket. Her mother and father send her off to an upper class resort to meet oung men. There she encounters a man named Henry and she falls in love with him. General Tilney is a man who runs a very strict household, despite his actions to appear laid back to Catherine. General Tilney is a stickler for people being on time.
He is always getting angry at people for disrupting his schedule or his sense of integrity and discipline. General Tilney is a jerk to his kids, and is known for having things done his own way, down to the smallest detail. His dealings with people who he wants to please, even though he attempts to hide his ways of being very strict and his ways of disciplining others, that wouldn’t be ustified to any one else. If others knew how he is, they would see that he was a very false person. General Tilney has a very artificial appearance, so his true persona is not a good, kind of man. Catherine notices these difficult personality traits when she is having breakfast with the Tilneys, before traveling with them to Northanger Abbey”‘. (Austen 20). He is phoney twords everyone and pretends to be sensitive, and accommodating to others. General Tilney is a Dumoulin 4. manipulator and makes his own point of any situation to go his own way. He will trick you to do anything that he can to get his own way, and not think twice to et his point across. He tends to his own point of interest, or for his own gain, while pretending to refer to someone’s needs.
He is a master manipulator at putting his own words into someones mouth. We see his verbal tactic at work in the scene in which, “Catherine Morland receives her invitation to Northanger Abbey. The general enters as Eleanor Tilney is on the verge of asking Catherine to visit Bath in Northanger’. (Austen 81). “General Tilney urges his daughter to bring up the subject without delay, and decides to extend the invitation in his own distinctive manner”. (Austen 94). This to me is a Gothic because they are getting eady to go to a place where there is a resort that’s a Castle.
In this Castle there’s a kind of old sense of mystery as we find out later. It has Catherine’s attention of the wonders of what will happen, and what could be. There are some details to compare with both of these novels, to say that they are both Gothic is a matter of an opinion. One similarity is that both novels take place in a castle. The scenes in both are only alike in the castle itself. The familiarity of this is the only comparison and that’s all. And this is what makes these stories both Gothic. Both Castle are very dark, cold, and very mysterious, so his is the main scene that would make any scene Gothic.
In “The Castle of Otranto”, when Manfred finds to want Isabella to be his bride to be, he doesn’t seem to care that his evil ways are destroying his kingdom. There are a lot of sexual tension in this evil mans heart that can only be fixed by having a son born for “Otranto”, to have the heir in line so the castle does not perish. “Manfred’s tenants and subjects were less cautious in their discourses”, Dumoulin 5. (Walpole 64) and they had pronounced an ancient prophecy which was said, “That the castle and lordship of Otranto should pass from the present family, henever the real owner should be grown too large to inhabit it”. Walpole 18). In one scene of the book of “The Castle of Otranto”. “Fredric was not surprised at the silence that was in the princess’s apartment. Concluding her, as he had been advised in her bedroom, he passed on”. Her door was slightly cracked open, with the evening a bit gloomy, and overcast with the moonlight covered by the night sky. Gently pushing the rest of the door open, Fredric enters the oratory to see that there is, “a person kneeling at the alter. As Fredric approaches closer, it seemed to not be a woman but someone in a long woolen robe. The person seemed absorbed in its prayer.
Fredric was about to turn around, when the figure rising, stood some moments fixed in meditation, without regarding him. The holy marquis, expecting the person to come fourth and meaning to excuse his uncivil interruption, said, “Reverend father, I sought the Lady Hippolita”–“Hippolita! ” replied the hollow voice, “camest thou to this castle to seek Hippolita? ” and the figure, turning slowly around, discovered to Fredric the fleshless jaws and empty sockets of a skeleton, rapt in a hermits cowl”. (Walpole P. 61-62). This to me is Gothic, only because it is set in a Castle.
But I do agree this is very Supernatural. This novel made more sense and was very interesting when situations like this occurred. It just made the reading more interesting. “Northanger Abbey” having the Castle in the background as well made this Gothic, but I don’t feel there was anything happening like there was in “The Castle of Otranto”. In Otranto, Fredric has a dream of a ghost that appears in princess’s apartment. He has a frightful Dumoulin 6. conversation with this hermit, who says Hippolita’s name. The hermit speaks of the Princess’s name in his dream.