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Shake·spear·ean - adjective \shāk-ˈspir-ē-ən: of or relating to William Shakespeare or his writings.

Almost every English speaking person has heard or read something about Shakespearean English. That adjective is perhaps the most frequently used of its kind. I once came across an adjective related to Shaw's writing, but I can't remember or find it. Are there other adjectives in current usage related to writers other than William Shakespeare?

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Well, there's Gonzo, the journalist. –  Sven Yargs Sep 3 at 0:25
Faulknerian, Hemminwayesque, Twainian. Shaw is Shavian –  guifa Sep 3 at 0:33
Dickensian. Randian. –  Elliott Frisch Sep 3 at 0:34
Orwellian. Kafkaesque. –  MT_Head Sep 3 at 1:02
Runyonesque, Stengelese? –  User58220 Sep 3 at 3:40

1 Answer 1

up vote 5 down vote accepted

This kind of word is an eponymous adjective. Wikipedia has a pretty comprehensive list of English eponymous adjectives. (The list includes many eponyms who are not writers, but as most persons worthy of distinction by such an adjective expressed their influence through writing, most on the list are authors of a kind.)

This list includes Shavian as relating to Shaw's works or style.

However, these adjectives are coined as necessary, and though Hemingwayesque and Twainian - mentioned in a comment - are rare enough not to show up in this list (nor yet in Google Books, as indicated by an Ngram), they are equally valid terms.

Virtually all eponymous adjectives simply add the -ian/-an suffix to the eponym, though -esque, -ic, and -ine also show up (to my ear, those respective suffixes are used indistinguishably in this role). If you're making one up, and you can't find a precedent, either -esque or -ian should be readily understood.

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What a typical Danielian answer. –  guifa Sep 3 at 2:04
How do you change the link into "the words in red"? (I know I should ask this question at Meta, so feel free to ignore it.) –  Centaurus Sep 3 at 2:08
@Luis like this: [text to display](link) Put the text inside square brackets, and immediately follow the bracket pair with a parentheses pair containing the full link. Voilà! –  Daniel Sep 3 at 2:11
@Daniel Thanks. As I suspected, when you know how to do it, everything (almost everything) turns out to be very easy. –  Centaurus Sep 3 at 14:05
@Daniel How about mentioning the ones we use or hear more often these days, so I can accept your answer? –  Centaurus Sep 3 at 14:14

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