The Poetry of John Dryden

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Harcourt, Brace and Howe, 1920 - 361 pages

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Page 199 - Of these the false Achitophel was first, A name to all succeeding ages curst : For close designs and crooked counsels fit, Sagacious, bold, and turbulent of wit, Restless, unfixed in principles and place, In power unpleased, impatient of disgrace ; A fiery soul, which working out its way, Fretted the pigmy body to decay And o'cr-informed the tenement of clay.
Page 200 - In the first rank of these did Zimri stand ;* A man so various, that he seemed to be Not one, but all mankind's epitome : Stiff in opinions, always in the wrong, Was everything by starts, and nothing long...
Page 201 - He laughed himself from court; then sought relief By forming parties, but could ne'er be chief; For, spite of him, the weight of business fell On Absalom, and wise Achitophel ; Thus, wicked but in will, of means bereft, He left not faction, but of that was left.
Page 253 - And, wondering, on their faces fell To worship that celestial sound. Less than a god they thought there could not dwell Within the hollow of that shell, That spoke so sweetly, and so well.
Page 158 - Farewell, too little and too lately known, Whom I began to think and call my own; For sure our souls were near allied, and thine Cast in the same poetic mould with mine.
Page 312 - The style of Dryden is capricious and varied ; that of Pope is cautious and uniform. Dryden obeys the motions of his own mind ; Pope constrains his mind to his own rules of composition. Dryden is sometimes vehement and rapid; Pope is always smooth, uniform, and gentle. Dryden's page is a natural field, rising into inequalities, and diversified by the varied exuberance of abundant vegetation ; Pope's is a velvet lawn, shaven by the scythe, and levelled by the roller.
Page 48 - tis all a cheat; Yet, fooled with hope, men favour the deceit; Trust on, and think to-morrow will repay: To-morrow's falser than the former day; Lies worse, and, while it says, we shall be blest With some new joys, cuts off what we possest.
Page 332 - For them the Ceylon diver held his breath, And went all naked to the hungry shark ; For them his ears gushed blood ; for them in death The seal on the cold ice with piteous bark Lay full of darts ; for them alone did seethe A thousand men in troubles wide and dark : Half-ignorant, they turned an easy wheel, That set sharp racks at work, to pinch and peel.
Page 259 - Bacchus' blessings are a treasure, Drinking is the soldier's pleasure : Rich the treasure, Sweet the pleasure, Sweet is pleasure after pain. Soothed with the sound the king grew vain; Fought all his battles o'er again, And thrice he routed all his foes, and thrice he slew the slain!
Page 207 - Shadwell alone my perfect image bears, Mature in dulness from his tender years ; Shadwell alone of all my sons is he Who stands confirmed in full stupidity. The rest to some faint meaning make pretence, But Shadwell never deviates into sense.

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