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Miguel de Cervantes, author of Don Quixote (the first part of which was published in 1605), is frequently cited as the first significant European novelist of the modern era.A novel is a long, fictional narrative which describes intimate human experiences.125 – after 180 AD)'s A True Story, the Alexander Romance and later novels Chariton's Callirhoe (mid-1st century), Achilles Tatius' Leucippe and Clitophon (early-2nd century), Longus' Daphnis and Chloe (2nd century), Xenophon of Ephesus' Ephesian Tale (late-2nd century), and Heliodorus of Emesa's Aethiopica (third century), which inspire writers of medieval novels such Hysimine and Hysimines by Eustathios Makrembolites, Rodanthe and Dosikles by Theodore Prodromos and Drosilla and Charikles by Niketas Eugenianos and Arístandros and Kallithéa by Constantine Manasses; works in Latin, such as the Satyricon by Petronius (c. 150 AD); works in Sanskrit such as the 4th or 5th century Vasavadatta by Subandhu, 6th– or 7th-century Daśakumāracarita and Avantisundarīkathā by Daṇḍin, and in the 7th-century Kadambari by Banabhatta, Murasaki Shikibu's 11th-century Japanese work The Tale of Genji, the 12th-century Hayy ibn Yaqdhan (or Philosophus Autodidactus, the 17th-century Latin title) by Ibn Tufail, who wrote in Arabic, the 13th-century Theologus Autodidactus by Ibn al-Nafis, another Arabic novelist, and Blanquerna, written in Catalan by Ramon Llull (1283), and the 14th-century Chinese Romance of the Three Kingdoms by Luo Guanzhong.and shows essentially all the qualities for which Marie de La Fayette's novel La Princesse de Clèves (1678) has been praised: individuality of perception, an interest in character development, and psychological observation.Then at the beginning of the 18th century, French prose translations brought Homer's works to a wider public, who accepted them as forerunners of the novel.

However, in the 17th century, critics saw the romance as of epic length and the novel as its short rival.Novels can, on the other hand, depict the social, political and personal realities of a place and period with clarity and detail not found in works of history.While prose rather than verse became the standard of the modern novel, the ancestors of the modern European novel include verse epics in the Romance language of southern France, especially those by Chrétien de Troyes (late 12th century), and in Middle English (Geoffrey Chaucer's (c. Even in the 19th century, fictional narratives in verse, such as Lord Byron's Don Juan (1824), Alexander Pushkin's Yevgeniy Onegin (1833), and Elizabeth Barrett Browning's Aurora Leigh (1856), competed with prose novels.The novel in the modern era usually makes use of a literary prose style.The development of the prose novel at this time was encouraged by innovations in printing, and the introduction of cheap paper in the 15th century.

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