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What we find in books is like the fire in our hearths. We fetch it from our neighbours, we kindle it at home, we communicate it to others, and it becomes the property of all.
Many tropes originated in literary works. Literature being nearly as old as writing itself, most of The Oldest Ones in the Book date to the classics, most Public Domain Characters appeared in print well before the first TV broadcasts, and even today, with the supposedly dwindling popularity of books in favor of more modern mediums, there are books with enough cultural impact to spawn TV Tropes.
Also see the Web Serial Novel page for works that started online.
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