1717 in literature
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The year 1717 in literature involved some significant events and new books.
- January - Three Hours After Marriage, a play written by Alexander Pope, John Gay and John Arbuthnot, is staged. The play satirizes poet and critic John Dennis as "Sir Tremendous Longinus the Critic", Lady Winchilsea as "Clinkett the poetess" and Colley Cibber as "Plotwell". The play meets with massive criticism and has a short run, mortifying Pope. In February, Dennis publishes his critical Remarks upon Mr Pope's Translation of Homer to which in May Thomas Parnell ripostes with Homer's Battle of the Frogs and Mice. With the Remarks of Zolius. To which is prefixed, the Life of the said Zolius, after which Dennis and Pope are reconciled for a decade.
- March 27 - Actress Adrienne Lecouvreur is invited to join the Comédie-Française in Paris, premièring in the title rôle of Prosper Jolyot de Crébillon's Electre.
- May 16 - Voltaire is sentenced to eleven months in the Bastille and is banished from Paris for criticizing the Duc D'Orléans. While in prison he writes his first play, Oedipe ("Oedipus").
- At the Lincoln's Inn Fields Theatre in London, actor-manager John Rich introduces the character of Harlequin into pantomimes.
- Publication (posthumously in Lyon) of the last two volumes of Antoine Galland's Les mille et une nuits, the first translation of One Thousand and One Nights into a European language, also including the first translation of the story of Ali Baba.
- Irish poet Hugh MacCurtin (Aodh Buidhe Mac Cuirtin)'s A brief discourse in vindication of the antiquity of Ireland, out of many authentick Irish histories and chronicles (based on Geoffrey Keating's History of Ireland) is published in Dublin. The author is imprisoned in the city about this time.
- Joseph Addison, John Dryden, Laurence Eusden, Sir Samuel Garth, John Gay, Alexander Pope, Nicholas Rowe and others - Ovid's Metamorphoses
- Elias Ashmole - Memoirs
- John Durant Breval - The Art of Dress
- Susanna Centlivre - An Epistle to the King of Sweden
- Anthony Collins - A Philosophical Inquiry Concerning Human Liberty
- John Dennis - Remarks upon Mr Pope's Translation of Homer
- Wentworth Dillon, 4th Earl of Roscommon - Poems by the Earl of Roscomon
- Elijah Fenton - Poems on Several Occasions
- Benjamin Hoadly - The Nature of the Kingdom, or Church of Christ (part of the Bangorian Controversy
- Jane Holt - A Fairy Tale
- William Law - The Bishop Bangor's Late Sermon (answer to Hoadly)
- Thomas Parnell - Homer's Battle of the Frogs and Mice
- Alexander Pope
- The Iliad of Homer vol. iii
- The Works of Mr. Alexander Pope (with new material)
- Matthew Prior - The Dove
- Thomas Purney - A Full Enquiry into the True Nature of Pastoral (part of the Pope/Philips quarrel)
- Richard Savage - The Convocation; or, A Battle of Pamphlets (satire on the Bangorian Controversy)
- Thomas Tickell - An Epistle from a Lady in England
- John Toland - The State-Anatomy of Great Britain
- Thomas Traherne - Hexameron (on creationism)
- Joseph Trapp - The Real Nature of the Church or Kingdom of Christ (part of the Bangorian Controversy)
- Ned Ward
- British Wonders
- A Collection of Historical and State Poems
- Leonard Welsted - Palaemon to Caelia, at Bath
- Eugenio Gerardo Lobo - Selva de las musas
- John Durant Breval (as "Mr. Gay") - The Confederates (attack on John Gay, Alexander Pope, and the other members of the Scriblerus Club)
- Christopher Bullock - The Perjuror
- Susanna Centlivre - The Cruel Gift
- Benjamin Griffin - The Masquerade
- Charles Johnson - The Sultaness
- Delarivière Manley - Lucius, the First Christian King of Britain
- Alexander Pope, John Gay and John Arbuthnot - Three Hours After Marriage
- William Taverner
- The Artful Husband
- The Artful Wife
- Pedro Calderón de la Barca - Autos sacramentales, alegóricos e historiales del insigne poeta español
- February 14 – Richard Owen Cambridge, English poet (died 1802)
- February 19 – David Garrick, English actor and playwright (died 1779)
- September 24 – Horace Walpole, English man of letters (died 1797)
- November 16 – Jean le Rond d'Alembert, French mathematician and encyclopedist (died 1783)
- December 9 – Johann Joachim Winckelmann, German art historian (died 1768)
- December 16 – Elizabeth Carter, English poet, writer and translator (died 1806)
- March 3 – Pierre Allix, French religious writer (born 1641)
- June 9 – Jeanne Guyon, French writer and mystic (born 1648)
- Unknown dates
- Paul, Harry Gilbert (1911). John Dennis: His Life and Criticism. New York: Columbia University Press. p. 91. Retrieved 2010-02-11.
- Cox, Michael, ed. (2004). The Concise Oxford Chronology of English Literature. Oxford University Press. ISBN 0-19-860634-6.
- This Day in History.
- Dircks, Phyllis T. (2004). "Rich, John (1692–1761)". Oxford Dictionary of National Biography (Online edition ed.). Oxford University Press. doi:10.1093/ref:odnb/23486. Retrieved 2014-12-10. (subscription or UK public library membership required)
- Moody, T. W. et al., eds. (1989). A New History of Ireland. 8: A Chronology of Irish History. Oxford University Press. ISBN 978-0-19-821744-2.