The term 'neo-gothic' simply means 'new-gothic' but is most commonly associated with the revival of Gothic literature, art, and architecture.
The idea can be applied to everything from the renewed interest in Gothic or Medieval architecture that began to form in 1740s England, through to the Romantic Horror genre that gained popularity in Victorian times and has amongst its contributing authors Mary Shelley (author of Frankenstein) and Edgar Allen Poe (The Tell Tale Heart, The Raven).
It is also known by the terms 'Gothic revival' and 'Victorian Gothic'.
As a literary term, describing something as Neo-Gothic can be quite ambiguous as it can relate to any literary movement that has been influenced by the original Gothic themes of the Middle Ages. According to this principle, everything from the Romantic poetry of Lord Byron through to the Anne Rice vampire novels of the late twentieth century might fall under this category.
The concept of 'Neo-Gothic' or 'Gothic revival' is almost as blurred in architecture, especially when it comes to attaching a specific timeline to the design trend. It was the early 1100s when the original Gothic style began to emerge, and yet the term remains relevant to this very day. In fact, it is thought that the amount of later architecture that adopted or revived the Gothic style heavily outnumbers the original examples of the form.
The period of particular interest, as far as the re-emergence of Gothic architectural features is concerned, are the years between 1740 and the late 19th century, and this Gothic revivalist movement was in stark contrast to the neo-classical designs of the same period.