D&D's Origins in Gothic Fiction - Page 3


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    D&D's Origins in Gothic Fiction

    I haven't read much Gothic fiction -- just Dracula, really -- and the genre has gone profoundly out of fashion, but in its day it was extremely popular, and, as Michael Moorcock and James Cawthorne declared in Fantasy: The 100 Best Books, the first Gothic novel, Otranto, influenced modern fantasy quite a bit.

    This is what jumped out at me though:
    The prevalence of castles in the literature was no accident, nor was the frequency with which they were built on the iceberg principle, with nine-tenths of their structure consisting of subterranean vaults. These spectre-infested spaces were rooted in the fantasies of an architect, Giovanni Piranesi. A revised edition of his Carceri d’Invenzione appeared in 1761, featuring a series of drawings of prison interiors conceived on a titanic and overpowering scale.
    Welcome to Blackmoor. (Ravenloft came much later, of course, and reintroduced a lot of Gothic elements quite explicitly.)
    Last edited by mmadsen; Wednesday, 2nd November, 2011 at 04:06 AM.

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