Aristotle, Poetics (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Arist. Poet.].
<<Arist. Poet. 1456a.20 Arist. Poet. 1456b.1 (Greek) >>Arist. Poet. 1456b.20

1456b.1the arousing of feelings like pity, fear, anger, and so on, and then again exaggeration and depreciation. [Note] It is clear that in the case of the incidents, too, one should work on the same principles, when effects of pity or terror or exaggeration or probability have to be produced. There is just this difference, that some effects must be clear without explanation, [Note] whereas others are produced in the speeches by the speaker and are due to the speeches. For what would be the use of a speaker, if the required effect were likely to be felt without the aid of the speeches?

Under the head of Diction one subject of inquiry is the various modes of speech, the knowledge of which is proper to elocution or to the man who knows the master art [Note]—I mean for instance, what is a command, a prayer, a statement, a threat, question, answer, and so on. The knowledge or ignorance of such matters brings upon the poet no censure worth serious consideration. For who could suppose that there is any fault in the passage which Protagoras censures, because Homer, intending to utter a prayer, gives a command when he says, "Sing, goddess, the wrath"? To order something to be done or not is, he points out, a command.

So we may leave this topic as one that belongs not to poetry but to another art.



Aristotle, Poetics (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Arist. Poet.].
<<Arist. Poet. 1456a.20 Arist. Poet. 1456b.1 (Greek) >>Arist. Poet. 1456b.20

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