Aristotle, Poetics (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Arist. Poet.].
<<Arist. Poet. 1458b.20 Arist. Poet. 1459a.1 (Greek) >>Arist. Poet. 1459a.20

1459a.1 All that sort of thing, not being in the ordinary form, gives distinction to the diction, which was what he failed to understand.

It is a great thing to make a proper use of each of the elements mentioned, and of double words and rare words too, but by far the greatest thing is the use of metaphor. That alone cannot be learnt; it is the token of genius. For the right use of metaphor means an eye for resemblances. [Note]

Of the various kinds of words the double forms are most suited for dithyrambs, rare words for heroic verse and metaphors for iambics. And indeed in heroic verse they are all useful; but since iambic verse is largely an imitation of speech, only those nouns are suitable which might be used in talking. These are the ordinary word, metaphor, and "ornament."

Now concerning tragedy and the art of representing life in action, what we have said already must suffice.

We come now to the art of representation which is narrative and in metre. [Note] Clearly the story must be constructed as in tragedy, dramatically, round a single piece of action, whole and complete in itself,



Aristotle, Poetics (English) (XML Header) [genre: prose] [word count] [Arist. Poet.].
<<Arist. Poet. 1458b.20 Arist. Poet. 1459a.1 (Greek) >>Arist. Poet. 1459a.20

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