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Questions tagged [alexander-pope]

Questions about the English poet Alexander Pope (1688 – 1744) and his works. Pope is best known for the mock-epic 'The Rape of the Lock' (1721), 'The Dunciad' and 'An Essay on Criticism' (1711).

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What did Pope intend to say by "Whatever is, is right"?

What did Pope intend to say by "Whatever is, is right"? Source: The Well-Educated Mind by Susan Wise Bauer (2nd edition, 2016), p. 86, middle.   Related to this is one final question: What ...
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6 votes
2 answers
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What did Alexander Pope mean by "Expletives their feeble Aid do join"?

Alexander Pope's 'An Essay on Criticism', lines 337–349: But most by Numbers judge a Poet's Song, And smooth or rough, with them, is right or wrong; In the bright Muse tho' thousand Charms ...
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6 votes
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Meaning and addressees of Hector's threats

The scene: Zeus and Apollo have just revived Hector who received a near-fatal blow from a boulder thrown by Ajax. Apollo and Hector then lead a refreshed Trojan onslaught on the Greeks, compelling ...
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5 votes
2 answers
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What did Alexander Pope mean by "That reason, passion, answer one great aim"?

Alexander Pope's An Essay on Man concludes with these lines: That, urg'd by thee, I turn'd the tuneful art From sound to things, from fancy to the heart; For wit's false mirror held up nature's light;...
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4 votes
1 answer
663 views

Vultures and wives? What does this expression mean?

Extract from Pope's translation of the Iliad, Book XI, describing Agamemnon's rampage during the third battle: Wide o’er the field with guideless fury rolls, Breaking their ranks, and crushing out ...
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4 votes
1 answer
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Why did Alexander Pope's "An Essay on Man" refer to itself as a "false mirror"?

Alexander Pope's An Essay on Man concludes with these lines: That, urg'd by thee, I turn'd the tuneful art From sound to things, from fancy to the heart; For wit's false mirror held up nature's light;...
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1 vote
2 answers
2k views

What's Samuel Johnson truly saying about Dryden and Pope?

Samuel Johnson wrote the following comparison between Dryden and Pope: Pope had perhaps the judgment of Dryden; but Dryden certainly wanted the diligence of Pope. In acquired knowledge the ...
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