What is a Novella?

#content #culture #definition Jul 24, 2022
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A Novella’s length varies from 17,500 to 40,000 words.


A Novella is Narrative Prose Fiction.

Structure (Narrative and Story Development)

The Novella began in the Italian Literature of the early Renaissance (1300s), grew out of a tradition of medieval short narrative forms, and the form also flourished in Spain.

In the late 18th and early 19th century, writers fashioned this form into a literary genre, complete with its own rules.

Structure (Stylistic and Literary Purpose)

The Novella went through several phases before settling on its final literary genre:

  • Written as Medieval Short Narrative Forms (Italy)
  • More emphasis was given to the depiction of human character and social background (Spain)
  • Flourished as a literary genre and focused on the realistic mode


Despite its formal literary genre creation, the Novella garnered a different path in Germany:

  • Ranges from a few pages to hundreds of pages
  • Contain a concrete symbol, which is the narrative’s focal point
  • Restricted to a single, suspenseful event, situation, or conflict leading to an unexpected turning point, provoking a logical, but surprising end


In the modern world, a Novella is often viewed as a short novel.

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