The Works of John Dryden: Now First Collected in Eighteen Volumes, Volume 15

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A. Constable & Company, 1821
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Page 345 - He rather prays you will be pleased to see One such, today, as other plays should be; Where neither chorus wafts you o'er the seas, Nor creaking throne comes down the boys to please, Nor nimble squib is seen to make afeard The gentlewomen, nor rolled bullet heard To say it thunders, nor tempestuous drum Rumbles to tell you when the storm doth come...
Page 335 - ... if observed, must needs render all the events in the play more natural ; for there you see the probability of every accident, in the cause that produced it ; and that which appears chance in the play, will seem so reasonable to you, that you will there find it almost necessary : so that in the...
Page 341 - I deny not but this may suit well enough with the French; for as we, who are a more sullen people, come to be diverted at our plays, so they, who are of an airy and gay temper, come thither to make themselves more serious: and this I conceive to be one reason why comedies are more pleasing to us, and tragedies to them.
Page 353 - As for Jonson, to whose character I am now arrived, if we look upon him while he was himself, (for his last plays were but his dotages) I think him the most learned and judicious writer which any theatre ever had.
Page 303 - ... every age has a kind of \ universal genius, which inclines those that live in * it to some particular studies : the work then being pushed on by many hands, must of necessity go forward.
Page 339 - And this leads me to wonder why Lisideius and many others should cry up the barrenness of the French plots above the variety and copiousness of the English. Their plots are single. They carry on one design, which is pushed forward by all the actors, every scene in the play contributing and moving towards it.
Page 374 - This last is indeed the representation of nature, but 'tis nature wrought up to an higher pitch. The plot, the characters, the wit, the passions, the descriptions are all exalted above the level of common converse, as high as the imagination of the poet can carry them, with proportion to verisimility.
Page 331 - ... before him; or to see a duel fought, and one slain with two or three thrusts of the foils, which we know are so blunted that we might give a man an hour to kill another in good earnest with them. " I have observed that in all our tragedies, the audience cannot forbear laughing when the actors are to die; it is the most comic part of the whole play.
Page 331 - ... the plot: and indeed it is somewhat unreasonable that they should be put to so much trouble, as that, to comprehend what passes in their sight, they must have recourse to what was done, perhaps, ten or twenty years ago. " But there is another sort of relations, that is, of things happening in the action of the play, and supposed to be done behind the scenes...
Page 321 - Ovid ; he had a way of writing so fit to stir up a pleasing admiration and concernment, which are the objects of a tragedy, and to shew the various movements of a soul combating betwixt two different passions, that, had he lived in our age, or in his own could have writ with our advantages, no man but must have yielded to him...

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