In the past few years, discussion of fiction in all sorts of media has intensified. The prominence of literary critics has increased, the awarding of lucrative book prizes has become more publicized, and reports of the formation of reading groups have proliferated. Seventeenth-Century Fiction: Text & Transmission responds to the present interest in the novel by offering a fresh approach to the history of early modern fiction that shifts away from the outmoded 'rise-of-the-novel' perspective and reaches beyond the boundaries of a single national literature. Starting from the literary text and looking outwards, this volume focuses on the changes in prose forms and their usage at a critical point in the evolution of modern fiction, and comes to grips with the instabilities of the novel and novella during this period. It explores the nature of seventeenth-century fiction and examines how authors fused fictional and non-fictional materials to create new, hybrid genres. Furthermore, it takes into consideration the cultural interchange between different geographical regions and languages (English, French, Spanish, Italian, Neo-Latin), and uncovers the deeper roots of seventeenth-century literary innovation, by casting light on the Continental influences on the formation of the English novel and on the role played by women's writings at the time. This landmark volume not only contributes to a more comprehensive history of the novel but promotes an authentic appreciation of early modern fiction.