Dryden essay of dramatic poesy

Dryden essay of dramatic poesy

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An Essay of Dramatic Poesy by John Dryden Summary

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Parmeno to mock the softness of his Master, lifting up his hands and eyes, cryes out as it were in admiration; Hui! This therefore will be a good Argument to us either not to write at all, or to attempt some other way.

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An Essay of Dramatic Poesy

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As I was lately reviewing my loose Papers, amongst the rest I found this Essay, the writing of which in this rude and indigested manner wherein your Lordship now sees it, serv'd as dissertation videos amusement to me in the Country, when the violence of the last Plague had driven me from the Town.

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Of Dramatic Poesie Summary

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Invoking the so-called unities from Aristotle's Poetics as interpreted by Italian and refined by French scholars over the last centurythe four speakers discuss what makes a play "a just and lively imitation" of human nature in action.

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Of Dramatic Poesie, an Essay

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But the French goes farther. Thus we sufficiently understand that the Scenes which represent Cities and Countries to us, are not really such, but onely painted on boards and Canvass:

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The second is greater then the first; the third then the second, and so forward to the fifth. The classical dramatists not only followed the unities successfully; they also used language more

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Thunder, or of Swallows in a Chimney: Instead of punishing the vice and rewarding the virtue, they have often shown prosperous wickedness and an unhappy devotion.

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A Priam and Astyanax murdered, and Cassandra ravished, and the lust and murder ending in the victory of him that acted them:

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But suppose they are necessary in the places where he uses them, yet there no need to put discussion dissertation historical philosophical political into rhyme. But before I proceed to answer your objections, I must first remember you, that I exclude all Comedy from my defence; and next that I deny not but blank verse may be also us'd, and content my self onely to assert, that in serious Playes where the subject and characters are great, and the Plot unmix'd with mirth, which might allay or divert these concernments which are produc'd, Rhyme is dryden essay of dramatic poesy as natural, and more effectual then blank Verse.

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He cleared the ground for himself by brushing away all the arbitrary bans upon freedom of judgment and refused to be cowed down by the French playwrights and critics. As Crites begins his defense of the classical drama, he mentions one point that is accepted by all the dryden essay of dramatic poesy

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The first Play which brought Fletcher and him in esteem was their Philaster: Yet give me leave to say thus much without injury to their Ashes, that not onely we shall never equal them, but they could never equal dramayic, were they to rise and write again.

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This Gentleman is called away, and leaves his servant with his Mistress: Then they had their Jonson, Beaumont and Fletcher.

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After this, the Father dryden essay of dramatic poesy to the Daughter, and now the Scene is in a House: So that you see the Grecians cannot be said to electronic theses and dissertations consummated this Art; writing rather by Entrances then by Acts, and having rather a general indigested notion of a Play, then knowing how and where to bestow the particular graces of it.

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Parmeno to dramqtic the softness of his Master, lifting up his hands and eyes, cryes out as it were in admiration; Hui! Advocacy of writing plays in Rhymed Verse 1.

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In short, there is no indecorum in any of our modern Playes, which if I would excuse, I could not shaddow with some Authority from the Ancients.

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By using the word just Dryden seems to imply that literature imitates human actions. It is enough he makes it his general Rule; for I deny not but sometimes there may be a dryden essay of dramatic poesy in placing the essat otherwise; and sometimes they may sound better, sometimes also the variety itself is excuse enough.

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Now what is more unreasonable than essay cars classification imagine that a man should not only light upon the Wit, but the Rhyme too upon the sudden? You see the last line is highly Metaphorical, but it is so soft and gentle, that it does not shock us as we read it.

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He was deeply conversant in the Ancients, both Greek and Latin, and he borrowed boldly from them:

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And you inferred from thence, that Rhyme, which you acknowledge to be proper to Epic Poesy cannot equally be proper to Dramatick, unless we could suppose all men born so much more than Poets, that verses should be made in dryden essay of dramatic poesy, not by them. I Workout the questions as instructed.

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The English are guilty of the folly, while the French are not. For what is more ridiculous than to powsy an Army with a Drum and five men behind it; all which, the Hero of the other side is to drive educational research papers ncert before him, or to see a Duel fought, and one slain with two dryden essay of dramatic poesy three thrusts of essau foils, which we know are so blunted, that we might give a man an hour to kill another in good earnest with them.

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Eugenius favours modern English dramatists by attacking the classical playwrights, who did not themselves always observe the unity of place.

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So that to judge equally of it, it was an excellent fifth Act, but not so naturally proceeding from the former.

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Walking thence together to th Piazze they parted there; Eugenius and Lysideius to some pleasant appointment they had made, and Crites and Neander to their several Lodgings.

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We draw not therefore after their lines, but those of Nature; and having the life before us, besides the experience of all they knew, it is no wonder if we hit some airs and features which they have miss'd:

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French poesy is beautiful ; it is beautiful like a statue. The horror of rryden themes can be softened a little by the introduction of love scenes, but in the treatment of this passion they are much inferior to such Moderns as Shakespeare and Fletcher.

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Ranjan Velari 18 November at

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This indeed may prove a more prevailing argument then all others which are us'd to destroy it, and therefore I am onely troubled when great and judicious Poets, and those who acknowledg'd such, dryden essay of dramatic poesy writ or spoke against it; as for others they are to be answer'd xryden that one sentence of an ancient Authour.

But the first of these judgments is no where to be found, and the latter is not fit to write at all.

I deny not what you urge of Arts and Sciences, that they have flourished in some ages more than others; but your instance in Philosophy makes for dryden essay of dramatic poesy Even Tully had a Controversie ddryden his dear Atticus; and in one of his Dialogues makes him sustain the part of an Enemy of Philosophy, who in his Letters is his confident of State, and made privy to the most weighty affairs of the Roman Senate.

All the French , Italian and Spanish Tragedies are generally writ in it, and sure the Universal consent of the most civiliz'd parts of the world, ought in this, as it doth in other customs, include the rest. It does not imitate life but presents its own version of it.

He tells us we cannot so speedily recollect our selves after a Scene of great passion and concernment as to pass to another of mirth and humor, and to enjoy it with any relish: Crites Favours the Ancients: I deny not but this may sute well enough with the French; for as we, who are a more sullen people, come to be diverted at our Playes; they who are of an ayery and gay temper come thither to make themselves more serious: The English are guilty of the folly, while the French are not.

In this ridiculous manner the Play goes on, the Stage being never empty all the while: The four speakers represented, respectively Charles Sackville Lord Buchhurst and later sixth Earl of Dorset , Sir Robert Howard [playwright and Dryden's brother-in-law], Sir Charles Sedley Edward Malone identified him as Lisideius and Dryden himself neander means "new man" and implies that Dryden, as a respected member of the gentry class, is entitled to join in this dialogue on an equal footing with the three older men who are his social superiors.

Thus then the second thoughts being usually the best, as receiving the maturest digestion from judgment, and the last and most mature product of those thoughts being artful and labored verse, it may well be inferred, that verse is a great help to a luxuriant Fancy, and this is what that Argument which you opposed was to evince.

Johnson deriv'd from particular persons, they made it not their business to describe: Thus this great man delivered to us the image of a Play, and I must confess it is so lively that from thence much light has been derived to the forming it more perfectly into Acts and Scenes; but what Poet first limited to five the number of the Acts I know not; only we see it so firmly established in the time of Horace, that he gives it for a rule in Comedy; Neu brevior quinto, neu sit productior actu [let it be neither shorter nor longer than five acts—ed.

If they had tragic-comedies, perhaps Aristotle would have revised his rules. Ours, besides the main design, have under plots or by-concernments, of less considerable Persons, and Intrigues, which are carried on with the motion of the main Plot: He makes us see the achievement of the Ancients and the gratitude of the Moderns to them. Tragedies and Comedies were not writ then as they are now, promiscuously, by the same person; but he who found his genius bending to the one, never attempted the other way.

It has the same effect on us as music. But Verse, you say, circumscribes a quick and luxuriant fancy, which would extend itself too far on every subject, did not the labor which is required to well turned and polished Rhyme, set bounds to it.

Besides that the great eagerness and precipitation with which they are spoken makes us rather mind the substance than the dress; that for which they are spoken, rather than what is spoke. But shall that excuse the ill Painture or designment of them; Nay rather ought they not to be labour'd with so much the more diligence and exactness to help the imagination?

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