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Page 80 - OF THAT SORT OF DRAMATIC POEM WHICH IS CALLED TRAGEDY. TRAGEDT, as it was anciently composed, hath been ever held the gravest, moralest, and most profitable of all other poems : therefore said by Aristotle to be of power, by raising pity and fear, or terror, to purge the mind of those and such like passions ; that is, to temper and reduce them to just measure with a kind of delight, stirred up by reading or seeing those passions well imitated.
Page 80 - ... to temper and reduce them to just measure with a kind of delight, stirred up by reading or seeing those passions well imitated. Nor is nature wanting in her own effects to make good his assertion; for so in physic, things of melancholic hue and quality are used against melancholy, sour against sour, salt to remove salt humours.
Page 88 - It may, by metaphor, apply itself Unto the general disposition ; As when some one peculiar quality Doth so possess a man, that it doth draw All his affects, his spirits, and his powers, In their confluctions, all to run one way, This may be truly said to be a humour.
Page 28 - It is, moreover, evident from what has been said, that it is not the function of the poet to relate what has happened, but -what may happen, — what is possible according to the law of probability or necessity.
Page 89 - Unity of plot does not, as some persons think, consist in the unity of the hero. For infinitely various are the incidents in one man's life which cannot be reduced to unity; and so, too, there are many actions of one man out of which we cannot make one action.
Page 290 - For where the stage should always represent but one place, and the uttermost time presupposed in it should be, both by Aristotle's precept and common reason, but one day; there is both many days and many places inartificially imagined.
Page 28 - Poetry, therefore, is a more philosophical and a higher thing than history: for poetry tends to express the universal, history the particular. By the universal I mean how a person of a certain type will on occasion speak or act, according to the law of probability or necessity; and it is this universality at which poetry aims in the names she attaches to the personages.
Page 60 - Tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the form of action, not of narrative ; through pity and fear effecting the proper purgation of these emotions.