1827 as "an adherent of romantic virtues in literature," from romantic (adj.). Earlier "a feature suggestive of romance" (1670s).
1733, "an admirer of a fine art, literature, science, etc., one who cultivates an art or literature casually and for amusement," a borrowing of Italian dilettante "lover of music or painting," from dilettare "to delight," from Latin delectare "to allure, delight, charm, please," frequentative of delicere "entice" (see delicious). Originally without negative connotation, "devoted amateur;" the pejorative sense "superficial and affected dabbler" emerged late 18c. by contrast with professional.
c. 1600, " parallel position," from Greek parallelismos, from parallelizein (see parallel). In literature, "correspondence resulting from repetition of the same sentiment, imagery, or construction" is from 1778.