The main features of poetry in the neoclassical age were:
a) Neoclassical poetry sprung from intellect, not from writers’ whims and imaginations.
b) It was a more moralising, educational type of poetry as opposed to the romantic poetry of the Renaissance Period (14th to 17th century). The neoclassical period was predominantly in the 18th and early 19th century.
c) Neoclassicism had three stages: Restoration Period (1660-1700), Augustan Age (1700-1750), and the Age of Johnson (1750-1798).
d) Its main feature was rationalism (reason as the primary foundation and test of knowledge).
e) Neoclassical poets wrote poetry without calling on feelings and imagination to help them create their literary works.
f) Plato was a significant source for writers of the neoclassical era.
g) Neoclassical poets, having high regard for classical rules, tried to adhere to these classical rules of poetry in their writings.
h) The neoclassical movement as a whole, which included its poetry, stemmed from the classical and contemporary French model.
i) Neoclassical poetry and other works embodied a response against the hopeful, enthusiastic, view of man typical to the Renaissance period.
j) Poets of the neoclassical era, many who were well-educated, made use of scholarly allusions in their work. They often made allusions to the classical writers such as Homer.
k) Being realists to a great degree, neoclassical poets endeavored to present what they believed was a true, real picture of the society in which they lived, worked, and played. This was in contrast to a romanticized view of society around them.