John Dryden (essay date 1677)
SOURCE: Dryden, John. “The Author's Apology prefixed to The State of Innocence and Fall of Man, an Opera (1677).” In The Prelude to Poetry: The English Poets in Defence and Praise of Their Own Art, edited by Ernest Rhys, pp. 123-34. London: Dent, 1970.
[In this essay, Dryden defends the genre of heroic drama from critics who describe it as bombastic and unrealistic.]
To satisfy the curiosity of those who will give themselves the trouble of reading the ensuing poem, I think myself obliged to render them a reason why I publish an opera which was never acted. In the first place, I shall not be ashamed to own that my chiefest motive was the ambition which I...
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