What are the best 17th century books?

asked by Anonymous
423 contributors
21 solutions
  1. 48

    #1King James Bible

    King James Bible
    This Bible version is a direct translation from the original Latin and Greek sources made during the kingdom of the British King James. This version comes also with the Apocrypha texts and with a full guide for helping the reader to make it through these labyrinthic, esoteric and theological issues.

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    William Wheeler
    Written on April 24, 2018
    "I don't actually know if this book was made in the 17th century. If it was, it surely has made the best seller list from that period, as it is widely known even today. "
  2. 45


    This is one of the greatest plays of all times and this edition is the groundbreaking Cambridge School, established by Rex Gibson. This is the story of the tormented prince of Denmark confronted with the evidence that this uncle murdered his father. 

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    Billy Lane
    Written on April 23, 2018
    "I am a big history buff. My favorite period in history is the 17th century, so I love reading Shakespeare. With Hamlet, I was able to read another one of Shakespeare's classics. This iconic story helped me understand more about the culture from the 17th century. "
  3. 41

    #3Dr. Faustus

    Dr. Faustus

    This book, one of Western's literature most popular classics, narrates the story of a German doctor who sells his soul to the Devil in order to become powerful and to obtain knowledge. 


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    Deborah Alexander
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "Dr. Faustus is an interesting tale from medieval times. The stories are quite graphic but I found it interesting."
  1. 41

    #4Paradise Lost

    Paradise Lost

    Paradise Lost contains John Milton's most celebrated epic poems that entail the cosmological and spiritual origins of man's existence. This book tackles and exposes some of the sensitive issues of Christianity.


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    Raquel Aguilar
    Written on April 14, 2018
    "This is a great classic that I think anyone will enjoy. It would make a very good book report material if someone needs it for a school assignment. It's a little bit challenging to read, but it wasn't too bad. Get the annotated version, that helped me a lot to get through the book without being completely confused."
  2. 39

    #5Shakespeare's Sonnets

    Shakespeare's Sonnets

    William Shakespeare is a great influence in the world of literature and poetry. Shakespeare Sonnets contains some of his best collections that offer great significance in different forms of contemporary art.


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    Will He
    Written on April 17, 2018
    "To the modern reader, it's often difficult to see the value in literature from the 17th century, but no one can deny the tremendous influence that remains from the work of Shakespeare. While this is actually a collection of sonnets penned by the bard, they're every bit as worth reading as any of his plays, perhaps moreso just to get a broader picture of the scope of Shakespeare's work."
  3. 34



    Othello by William Shakespeare is a drama novel first published in 1603. This book follows the story of two married couples, Othello and Desdemona, from mutual devotion to jealousy and death. This novel has a movie and a play adaptation.


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    Patricia Price
    Written on April 19, 2018
    "Othello is one of the best 17th century books. It is a great read and I'm sure one of the best."
  4. 34

    #7Don Quixote

    Don Quixote
    Don Quixote by the Spanish writer Miguel de Cervantes is considered the first modern novel. It was published in two parts, in 1605 and 1615. It is about a rich man who went crazy after reading chivalry tales and traveled around the world. 

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    Janice Jimenez
    Written on April 21, 2018
    "Don Quixote was written by Miguel de Cervantes published in 1605 and 1615 It is about a rich man who went crazy after reading chivalry tales and traveled around the world. "
  5. 31

    #8King Lear

    King Lear

    King Lear was too old and tired to reign anymore, so he decided to divide his realm among his daughters: the two eldest daughters flattered him, and they were rewarded properly, but the youngest child, Cordelia, expressed her true feelings towards him, and was disinherited, what ultimately made the King lose his mind. 


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    Patrick Hamilton
    Written on April 28, 2018
    "King Lear was a really great 17th century setting. It really dove deep in to that era and allowed you to view life in that time. It helped you understand their problems in that time."
  6. 30


    Macbeth is a play by the famous playwright William Shakespeare that tells the story about the titular Macbeth and his wife, Lady Macbeth, and how their murderous greed for power and the crown ultimately led to their own demise.

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    Raquel Blanco
    Written on April 18, 2018
    "I had to purchase this book for my English classes. Before this, I used the Folger editions and to be honest Shakespeare isn't exactly casual reading. This edition does provide convenient translations which I rely on, a lot. This version was helpful in understanding the content as an overview. However, I still needed to buy another book for understanding terms and references from the original text. Shakespeare is always a challenge to read, but his insights into human nature and the beautiful language certainly make the effort worthwhile. "
  7. 23

    #10Le Malade Imaginaire

    Le Malade Imaginaire

    Le Malade imaginaire is a three-act theatrical comedy written by Molière. Originally published in 1673, Le Malade imaginaire (The Imaginary Invalid) is also known as The Hypochondriac, an alternative translation of the French title.


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  8. 13

    #11The Misanthrope

    The Misanthrope
    The Misanthrope is a book in French literature by Molière. Originally published in 1666, The Misanthrope or Le Misanthrope ou l’Atrabilaire amoureux is a play focusing on comedy in five acts and in verse.

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    Russell Ruiz
    Written on May 8, 2018
    "The Misanthrope is a piece of French literature that focuses on comedy in different dimensions. That is, it's a piece of work that breaks it down into many different aspects such as emotion, social, and hypocrisy. Even though this is not my area of study, it was still very interesting and the breakdown provides a very deep and insightful look from that perspective. Even if you don't have a fondness of comedy, it's worth looking at it as it really does showcase the art of comedy in its many forms. Highly recommend."
  9. 11



    Tartuffe is a satirical book by Molière. Originally published in 1644, Tartuffe is translated by Martin Sorrell and was banned for five years in the Molière's day. The book was deemed satirical for its views on religious hypocrisy.


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    Diana Fowler
    Written on May 11, 2018
    "If you aren't religious then you are considered an outcast; then and now. Unfortunately, you can be spiritual and not believe or endorse any specific religion. There is a great tax benefit for being a church; ask the church of scientology. "
  10. 9

    #13L'Avare (French Edition)

    L'Avare (French Edition)

    L'Avare is a five-act theatrical comedy in prose written by Molière. Originally published in 1668, L'Avare (The Miser) was first performed in 1668 at the theatre of the Palais-Royal in Paris.


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    Ronald Mendez
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "L'Avare is a wonderful French comedy. It's not a traditional book, but is a great read. There might be more important works, but this is a fine read."
  11. 3

    #14The Tempest

    The Tempest

    The Tempest is a play by the iconic medieval poet and playwright William Shakespeare. It is believed to have been written in 1610. It is about the complexities of the human mind and the gray areas in life choices.


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    Eduardo Velázquez
    Written on May 1, 2018
    "I think The Tempest is one of the best 17th-century books that I have read. I love most things that William Shakespeare has written but this one is my favorite. I love the complexities of the story. "
  12. 0



    Hamlet is a classic fictional tragic play written by William Shakespeare. Hamlet was published on August 12, 2008 by Modern Library. Hamlet's first publication was in year 1603.


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    Rebecca Harris
    Written on May 8, 2018
    "Tremendous work! One of the most famous of all time for a reason. Shakespeare may or may not be your thing, but do give him a chance. He is hysterically funny and profoundly sad. For sure one of the most talented writers that ever lived. You can read this for free, no need to buy an edited version, so for sure at least give it a try!"
  13. 0

    #16L'Ecole des Femmes

    L'Ecole des Femmes

    L'École des Femmes is a theatrical comedy written by Molière. Originally published in 1663, the L'École des Femmes (The School for Wives) revolves around the characters of Arnolphe, Agnès, Horace, Alain, and Georgette.


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  14. 0

    #17The School for Wives and The Learned Ladies, by Moliere: Two comedies in an acclaimed translation.

    The School for Wives and The Learned Ladies, by Moliere: Two comedies in an acclaimed translation.
    The School for Wives / The Learned Ladies is a play written by Molière and translated by Richard Wilbur. Published in 1991, The School for Wives / The Learned Ladies focuses on the story of an insecure man.

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    Joshua Peterson
    Written on May 17, 2018
    "This book is rather dated though it definitely has a lot of good comedic qualities. I read this book on a long flight and found it rather amusing as the old fashion sense of humor was a good change of pace for me. I think the book is aimed more towards female readers though anyone reading the novel will get a kick out of it. It's a good book to have in your collection or as a coffee table ornament."
  15. 0

    #18Les Fourberies De Scapin

    Les Fourberies De Scapin

    Les Fourberies de Scapin is a three-act theatrical comedy written by Molière. Originally published in 1671, Les Fourberies de Scapin (Scapin the Schemer) focuses on the adventures and misadventures of the main protagonist Scapin.


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    Matthew Hopkins
    Written on May 17, 2018
    "A good adventure book for those who a fluent in French. Has a likable main character, who has a few flaws. Not the best of books, but it will certainly help you pass the time."
  16. 0

    #19Les Femmes Savantes

    Les Femmes Savantes

    Les Femmes savantes is a five-act theatrical comedy written in verse by Molière. Originally published in 1672, Les Femmes savantes (The Learned Ladies) is a satire on academic pretensions and female education.


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    Bertha Antonio
    Written on May 12, 2018
    "Les Femmes Savantes is a clever 17th century French classic depicting female education during the time. The problem is that this book is currently only available in French. Additionally, I don't think this book is necessarily one of the "best" 17th century books since its appeal seems confined to its specific time and place with limited universal applicability."
  17. 0

    #20The Wolves of Andover (Carrier book series)

    The Wolves of Andover (Carrier book series)

    The Wolves of Andover is a historical fiction novel written by Kathleen Kent. This historical fiction novel was published on November 8, 2010 by Reagan Arthur Books.


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    Alexander Smith
    Written on May 9, 2018
    "This solution is good because it is an interesting historical book. The characters and setting make for a good story."
  18. 0

    #21School for Husbands

    School for Husbands

    The School for Husbands is a three-act theatrical comedy written in verse by Molière. Originally published in 1661, The School for Husbands focuses on a string of comedy centering on radical contrast between the ideas of two brothers.


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    Larry Fuller
    Written on May 10, 2018
    "I believe that old books like this need to be preserved. It's such a great thing that a book this old is being republished so that it does not get lost to history. It's very entertaining for something so old and gives insight to the way of thinking in that age."


Best What are the best 17th century books
1King James BibleBooks 48 Paid
2HamletBooks 45 Paid
3Dr. FaustusBooks 41 Paid
4Paradise LostBooks 41 Paid
5Shakespeare's SonnetsBooks 39 Paid
6OthelloBooks 34 Paid
7Don QuixoteBooks 34 Paid
8King Lear Books 31 Paid
9MacbethBooks 30 Paid
10Le Malade ImaginaireBooks 23 Paid

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