An Essay on the Writings and Genius of Shakespear Compared with the Greek and French Dramatic Poets: With Some Remarks Upon the Misrepresentations of Mons. de Voltaire
H. Hughs, 1772 - 288 pages
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As yet our stage had exhibited only those palpable allegories , by which rude
unlettered moralists instruct and please the gross and ignorant multitude .
Nothing can more plainly evince the opinion , the poets of those times had of the
And though the Romans , who had conquered all other nations , had the best
right to prefer their own manners , and despise those of other countries , yet their
critics inculcated the necessity of imitating those of the people represented .
The play opens by his declaring his intention to war against the infidels , which
he does not undertake , as was usual in those times , from a religious enthusiasm
, but is induced to it by political motives : that the martial spirit may not break out ...
From an odious hand they are so many offences : the more we bestow upon
those who hate us , the more arms we furnish to those who may betray us . He
bestows them upon me every day , without changing my resolution . I am what I
To create in the English spectator , the same reverence for him , it is necessary
we should be made to imbibe those doctrines , and to adopt those opinions , by
which he himself was actuated . We must be in the very Capitol of Rome ; stand
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LibraryThing ReviewUser Review - JamesBoswell - LibraryThing
The admirers of this Essay may be offended at the slighting manner in which Johnson spoke of it; but let it be remembered, that he gave his honest opinion unbiassed by any prejudice, or any proud ... Read full review