Alexander Pope: The Critical Heritage

By John Barnard | Go to book overview

ILIAD

6 June 1715-May 1720

Even before the publication of the first four books of Pope's translation, interest was excited by the threat from a rival translation by Thomas Tickell. The three first items (Nos 25-7) represent this hectic pre-publication interest. Since the Iliad is one of Pope's most important contemporary achievements, a wide sampling of the critical response from 1715 to 1728 is given here. Further, see Introduction pp. 12-13.


25.

Preliminary praise

1714

Richard Fiddes, extract from A Prefatory Epistle Concerning some Remarks to be published on Homer'sIliad: Occasioned by the Proposals of Mr. Pope…(1714), pp. 9-10. The pamphlet is dedicated to Swift.

The Iliad had been announced in October 1713. Fiddes (1671-1725), who had written some 'Cursory Observations' on the Iliad, was prompted by Pope's proposals to put them together as a promissory prolegomena in the hopes of attracting patronage.

The Author of the Essay on Criticism, who has a Wit capable of every thing, but what relates to the Controversy betwixt us and the Church of Rome, will, it is hop'd, with a fine Version of the Iliad, oblige the World with just Remarks upon it. As he has confessedly the most sprightly and easy Muse, except perhaps one Person you will not give me leave to Name [i.e. Swift], he will now have a noble Occasion of trying her Strength. And there will be a great disappointment of the general Expectation, if he do not at once enrich the Language wherein he writes, and reduce it, which seems very much wanting, still nearer to a Standard.

-114-

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Alexander Pope: The Critical Heritage
Table of contents

Table of contents

  • Title Page iii
  • General Editor's Preface v
  • Acknowledgments vi
  • Contents vii
  • Abbreviations xiv
  • Preface xv
  • I - Introduction 1
  • Note on the Text 39
  • Part I - Contemporary Criticism 41
  • General Reactions 43
  • Pastorals 59
  • An Essay on Criticism 71
  • Messiah, a Sacred Eclogue 87
  • Windsor Forest 89
  • The Rape of the Lock 93
  • Iliad 114
  • A Roman Catholick Version of the First Psalm 139
  • Eloisa to Abelard 140
  • Elegy to the Memory of an Unfortunate Lady 143
  • Epitaph on John Hewet and Sarah Drew in the Churchyard at Stanton Harcourt 144
  • General Reactions 147
  • Odyssey 164
  • The Dunciad 208
  • The Dunciad Variorum 219
  • General Reactions 236
  • 'Ethick Epistles' (An Abandoned Project) 263
  • Moral Essays Iv: Epistle to Burlington, of Taste 265
  • Moral Essays Iii: to Allen Lord Bathurst, of the Use of Riches 268
  • Imitations of Horace, Satire Ii. I 269
  • An Essay on Man 278
  • Epitaph on Mr. Gay in Westminster Abbey 317
  • Imitations of Horace: Serm. I. II (Sober Advice from Horace) 319
  • An Epistle from Mr. Pope to Dr. Arbuthnot 329
  • Epilogue to the Satires: Dialogue II 331
  • The New Dunciad: As It Was Found in the Year 1741 333
  • The Dunciad in Four Books 342
  • A Final Tribute 346
  • Part II - Later Criticism 351
  • Appendix A 529
  • Appendix B 532
  • Bibliography 537
  • Index 539
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