"This new edition contains more than 600 entirely new entries, to reflect the new figures and issues of English literature in the new millennium, and the existing entries have been extensively revised and updated to incorporate the latest scholarhip. But it remains faithful to Sir Paul Harvey's original vision of an authoritative work placing English literature in its widest context: no other volume offers such extensive exploration of the classical roots of English literature and the European authors and works that influenced its development, in recognition of the fact that literature in English cannot and should not be divorced from the cultural context from which it grew.". "Also updated are the invaluable appendices, including the major literary awards and their winners and a full chronology spanning a thousand years of English literature, from Beowulf to the present day. Informed by the latest scholarly thinking, and comprehensively cross-referenced to guide the reader to topics of related interest."--BOOK JACKET.