The Encyclopaedia Britannica; A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and General Literature Volume 3

The Encyclopaedia Britannica; A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and General Literature Volume 3

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This historic book may have numerous typos and missing text. Purchasers can usually download a free scanned copy of the original book (without typos) from the publisher. Not indexed. Not illustrated. 1894 edition. Excerpt: ... which a critic who weighs the meaning of his words can admit to be as coarse as the coarsest work of Ben Jonson. They are prone, indeed, to indulge elsewhere in a wanton and exuberant license of talk; and Fletcher, at least, is liable to confuse the shades of right and wrong, to deface or efface the boundary lines of good and evil, to stain the ermine of virtue and palliate the nakedness of vice with the same indecorous and incongruous laxity of handling. Often, in mere haste to despatch the business of a play, to huddle up a catastrophe or throw out some particular scene into sharp and immediate relief, he will sacrifice all seemline3s and consistency of character to the present aim of stage eflect, and the instant impression of strong incident or audacious eloquence. Hi9 heroines are too apt to utter sentiments worthy of Diana in language unworthy of Doll Tearsheet. But in this play both style and sentiment are throughout on a lower level, the action and emotion are of a baser kind than usual; the precept of Aristotle and the practice of Jonson have been so carefully observed and exaggerated that it might almost be said to offer us in one or two places an imitation not merely of the sorrier but of the sorriest qualities of human nature; and full as it is of spontaneous power and humorous invention, the comedy extolled by the moral Steele (with just so much of reservation as permits him to deprecate the ridicule cost upon the clerical character) is certainly more offensive to artistic law and sesthetic judgment by the general and ingrained coarseness of its tone, than the tragi-comedy denounced by the immortal Dryden as exceeding in license his own worst work and that of his fellow playwrights--an imputation, be it said in passing, more

Product details

  • Paperback | 1172 pages
  • 189 x 246 x 58mm | 2,041g
  • Miami Fl, United States
  • English
  • black & white illustrations
  • 1236590988
  • 9781236590985