In his Poetics, Aristotle distinguishes two main genres of poetry and several sub-genres. the two main genres are epic and dramatic poetry. They are distinguished by drama being a type of poetry the imitates by means of mimesis exclusively and epic one that imitates by a combination of mimesis and diegesis. Dramatic poetry is sub-divided into comic and tragic by both subject matter (people worse or better than average) and treatment (serious vs. humorous). Aristotle's treatment of comedy originally followed his discussion of tragedy in teh Poetics but is no longer extant. Aristotle also discusses choric poetry, and especially the origin of tragedy in the dithyramb.
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