Laurence Stapleton (essay date 1973)
SOURCE: Stapleton, Laurence. “Sir Thomas Browne and Meditative Prose.” In The Elected Circle: Studies in the Art of Prose, pp. 42-72. Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1973.
[In the following essay, Stapleton offers an evaluation of Browne's major prose works.]
Sir Thomas Browne is in one way the most original prose writer of the seventeenth century; not simply for the uniqueness of tone, the individual voice imparted to every sentence, but because he evolved a form of writing that contained the seed of growth. The sermon had no future, the Baconian essay was perfected by Bacon, never to be equalled. Browne's prose, in contrast, created an encounter of...
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