Introduction. List of Dryden's works. Epistle dedicatory of the Rival ladies. Preface to Annus mirabilis. Of dramatic poesy, an essay. Prologue to Secret love or the Malden queen. Defence of an Essay of dramatic poesy. Preface to An evening's love. Of heroic plays, an essay. Epilogue to the second part of the Conquest of Granada. Defense of the epilogue. The author's apology for heroic poetry and poetic licence. Prefact to All for love. Preface to Troilus and Cressida, containing the grounds of criticism in tragedy. Preface to Ovid's Epistles. Dedication of the Spanish frair. Preface to Sylvæ (The seond miscellany) Preface to Albion and Albanus. Notes

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Clarendon Press, 1926
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Page 80 - ... you more than see it, you feel it too. Those who accuse him to have wanted learning give him the greater commendation: he was naturally learned; he needed not the spectacles of books to read nature; he looked inwards, and found her there. I cannot say he is every where alike; were he so, I should do him injury to compare him with the greatest of mankind. He is many times flat, insipid; his comic wit degenerating into clenches, his serious swelling into bombast. But he is always great when some...
Page 227 - And thus still doing, thus he pass'd along. Duch. Alas ! poor Richard ! where rides he the while ? York. As in a theatre, the eyes of men, After a well-graced actor leaves the stage, Are idly bent on him that enters next, Thinking his prattle to be tedious : Even so, or with much more contempt, men's eyes Did scowl on Richard ; no man cried, God save him...
Page 161 - ... those poets writ. Then, one of these is, consequently, true ; That what this poet writes comes short of you, And imitates you ill (which most he fears), Or else his writing is not worse than theirs. Yet, though you judge (as sure the critics will), That some before him writ with greater skill, In this one praise he has their fame surpast, To please an age more gallant than the last. DEFENCE Of THE EPILOGUE; OR, AN ESSAY ON THE DRAMATIC POETRY OF THE LAST AGE.
Page 227 - God save him;' No joyful tongue gave him his welcome home; But dust was thrown upon his sacred head, Which with such gentle sorrow he shook off, His face still combating with tears and smiles, The badges of his grief and patience, That had not God (for some strong purpose) steel'd The hearts of men, they must perforce have melted And barbarism itself have pitied him.
Page 83 - To conclude of him; as he has given us the most correct plays, so in the precepts which he has laid down in his Discoveries, we have as many and profitable rules for perfecting the stage, as any wherewith the French can furnish us.
Page 153 - I boldly answer him, that an heroic poet is not tied to a bare representation of what is true, or exceeding probable; but that he may let himself loose to visionary objects, and to the representation of such things as depending not on sense, and therefore not to be comprehended by knowledge, may give him a freer scope for imagination.
Page 8 - But that benefit which I consider most in it, because I have not seldom found it, is, that it bounds and circumscribes the fancy : for imagination in a poet is a faculty so wild and lawless, that like an high-ranging spaniel, it must have clogs tied to it, lest it outrun the judgment.
Page 80 - All the images of nature were still present to him, and he drew them not laboriously but luckily: when he describes anything you more than see it, you feel it too. Those who accuse him to have wanted learning, give him the greater commendation: he was naturally learned; he needed not the spectacles of books to read Nature; he looked inwards, and found her there.
Page 81 - One cannot say he wanted wit, but rather that he was frugal of it. In his works you find little to retrench or alter. Wit and language, and humour also in some measure, we had before him ; but something of art was wanting to the drama, till he came.
Page lxi - In my style, I have professed to imitate the divine Shakespeare; which that I might perform more freely, I have disencumbered myself from rhyme. Not that I condemn my former way, but that this is more proper to my present purpose.

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