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The Monk: A Romance is a Gothic novel by Matthew Gregory Lewis, published in 1796. A quickly written book from early in Lewis's career (it was written in ten weeks, before he turned 20), its convoluted and scandalous plot has made it one of the most important Matthew Gregory Lewis of its time, often imitated and adapted for the stage and the screen. The Monk is one of the more lurid and "transgressive" of Gothic novels. It is also the first book to feature a priest as the villain. In this respect it would serve as a model for such future works of literature as The Hunchback of Notre Dame. This novel was considered by the Marquis de Sade as a reaction to the 1789 French Revolution, with Lewis using the Gothic to express concerns circulating around England in the Romantic Period. Concerns such as social stability and the mis-use of power are some of the issues explored.
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Matthew Gregory Lewis (9 July 1775 – 16 May 1818) was an English novelist and dramatist, often referred to as "Monk" Lewis, because of the success of his 1796 Gothic novel, The Monk.
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