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lition, but a fixed will, invincibly upheld in the midst of all exterior vicissitude, until the time of its accomplishment is ripe. Thus cut down, it will no longer be what Shakspeare has so often represented, and what he has described in the following
But why is the practice of the Greek and of the Romantic Poets so different in respect of their treatment of time and place ? The spirit of our criticism will not allow us to follow the example of many of our modern critics, and unceremoniously pronounce the latter to be barbarous. On the contrary, we hold that they lived in very cultivated times, and were themselves exceedingly cultivated men. Next to the structure of the ancient theatres, which naturally led to the apparent indifference of time, and fixity of scene, the practice was favoured by the nature of the materials on which the Greek dramatists had to work. These materials were mythology, which in itself was fiction, and the treatment of which, in the hands of preceding poets, had collected into continuous and perspicuous masses, what, in reality, was broken and scattered about in various ways. Moreover, the heroic age which they depicted, was at once very simple in its manners, and marvellous in its incidents; and thus every thing, of its own accord, went straight to the mark of a tragic decision
But the principal cause of the difference lies in the plastic spirit of the antique, and the picturesque spirit of romantic poetry. Sculpture directs our attention exclusively to the group which it sets before us; it divests it, as much as possible, of all external circumstances; and where these cannot be dispensed with, they are indicated as slightly as possible. Painting, on the contrary, delights to exhibit not only the principal figures, but the detail of the surrounding scenery, and all secondary circumstances, and to open a prospect into a boundless distance in the back-ground : light and shade and perspective are its peculiar charms. Hence in the Dramatic, and especially in the Tragic Art of the ancients, the external circumstances of place and time are in some measure annihilated, while in the romantic drama their alternations serve to adorn its more varied pictures. Or, to express myself differently: the principle of the antique poetry is ideal, that of the romantic is mystical; the former subjects space and time to the internal free-agency of the mind, the latter honours these incomprehensible essences as supernatural powers, in which there is a somewhat of indwelling divinity.
1. CRASES ATTICÆ.
'AYTOE crasi Attica est pro ó aŭròs idem. Simili ratione scribebant Αttici ανήρ, αναξ, αγών, άνθρωπος, άτερος, αγαθός pro ο ανήρ, ο άναξ, ο αγών, &c. Monk's Hippol. ó , , ó , c.
. v. 1005.- avròç sine articulo non valet idem ; sed ipse, monente Porsono ad Hec. v. 295.
Ούτ' άρα est ού τοι άρα, diphthongo οι, que elidi non potest, cum brevi vocali crasin efficiente : quod persæpe fit in Atticis poetis, præsertim in rol aga et toi äv. Ib. v. 413.
Πατρώα και μητρώα πήμαθ', παθες. Qua ratione a in å prales produci possit, ambigit H. Stephanus -producitur autem hoc in loco tò à propter crasin duarum vocalium brevium, a, e, in unam longam a coalescentium, eadem prorsus ratione qua producitur τάμα pro τα εμά, άκων pro áékwv, et alia ejusmodi plurima. Elmsley ad Edip. Col. v. 1195.
Quoties articulus in vocalem desinit, vocabulum autem quod eum sequitur a vocali incipit, non eliditur prima posterioris vocis syllaba, sed cum articulo in unam syllabam per crasin coalescit. Verbi causa, pro toū fuoñ, non toū uov, sed toịuoū scribendum est.
In nostra fabula pro τα 'ξευρήματα, του πιόντος, τα 'μά, το μω, τη μαυτού, scribendum erat τάξευρήματα, τουπιόντος, ταμά, τώμη, τήμαυτού. Scilicet in omni duarum syllabarum crasi eliditur iūra prioris syllabæ. Quod in köyw et similibus in vetustioribus codicibus fieri monuit Porsonus. Eadem est ratio in τάν et τάρα, que pro τoι αν et τοι άρα passim leguntur. . Hæc qui attente secum consideret, nemo, opinor, dubitabit, quin pro οι έμοί et αι έμαι non οι 'μοι et αι 'μαι, sed oυμοί et ámai scribendum sit. Elmsley, Præfat. in Edip. Tyr. x. xi.