Omniscient narrator  

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

An omniscient narrator, as in more limited third-person forms, is also disembodied; it takes no actions and has no physical form in or out of the story. But, being omniscient, it witnesses all events, even some that no characters witness. The omniscient narrator is privy to all things past, present and future - as well as the thoughts of all characters. As such, an omniscient narrator offers the reader a birds-eye view about the story. The story can focus on any character at any time and on events where there is no character. The third-person omniscient narrator is usually the most reliable narrator; however, the omniscient narrator may offer judgments and express opinions on the behavior of the characters. This was common in the 19th century, as seen in the works of Jane Austen, Leo Tolstoy or George Eliot. Some more modern examples are Lemony Snicket and J. K. Rowling. In some unusual cases, the reliability and impartiality of the narrator may be as the third.

Dear reader

In Victorian literature the concept of the authorial intrusion and the address to the reader. For example, the author might interrupt her narrative to pass judgment on a character, or pity or praise another, while later seeming to exclaim "Dear Reader!" and inform or remind the reader of some other relevant fact.


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Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Omniscient narrator" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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