All terms

What is Baroque?

A style characterized by ornate detail.

Embrace the Fancy: Understanding the Ornate Style of Baroque

In Baroque art and literature, less is never more; instead, extravagance, opulence, and intricate detail reign supreme. From elaborate gilded ceilings to meandering sentences that are a punctuation pedant's worst nightmare, Baroque is a style that is defined by its excess. Originating in the late 16th century in Rome, this highly stylized and ornate movement spread quickly throughout Europe, making its mark on everything from architecture to painting to poetry.

What is the best way to approach writing in a Baroque style? If you find yourself enamored with the complex and winding sentences of the past, start by embracing flowery and adorned language in your writing. Emulate the curves, the grandeur, and the elaborate detail of Baroque art in your prose by including long, complex descriptions, using elaborate metaphors, and incorporating uniquely beautiful words with charming connotations. In short — go all out, without reservation, and give that pen a heavy hand.

But be warned - Baroque language is not for the faint of heart nor for the grammar novice. It can be a challenge to write in a style that requires such intense attention to detail; however, if you are up for the challenge, you will find that the payoff is worth it. A well-crafted Baroque-style story can be an immersive, sensory experience, unparalleled in its ability to transport a reader to a fantastical and rich world that they will never want to leave.

When Words Turn Fancy: Examples of Baroque in Literature

Baroque writing style can be recognized by an abundance of ornate descriptive details and a fondness for complex sentences, at times spanning multiple paragraphs.

A Journal of the Plague Year

Daniel Defoe's A Journal of the Plague Year is a classic example of Baroque literature, with its rambling, detailed descriptions of London during the bubonic plague.

The Faerie Queene

Edmund Spenser's The Faerie Queene is renowned for its use of elaborate, Baroque language, with each stanza displaying intricate wordplay and poetic devices.