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APPENDIX TO TUE TWELFTII LUCTCRE.

171

DIKAIOPOLIS
What! you compose aloft and not below.
No wonder if your muse's bantlings halt.
Again, those rags and cloak right tragical,
The very garb for sketching beggars in!
But sweet Euripides, a boon, I pray thee.
Give me the moving rags of some old play;
I've a long speech to make before the Chorus,
And if I falter, why the forfeit's death.

EURIPIDES.
What rags will suit you? Those in which old (Eneus,
That hapless wight, went through his bitter conflict ?

DIKATOPOLIS.
Vot Eneus, no,but one still sorrier.

EURIPIDES. Those of blind Phønix?

DIKAIOPOLIS.

No, not Phænix either : But another, more wretched still than Phønix.

EURIPIDES. Whose sorry tatters can the fellow want? 'Tis Philoctetes' sure! You mean that beggar.

DIKATOPOLIS. No; but a person still more beggarly.

EURIPIDES.
I have it. You want the sorry garments
Bellerophon, the lame man, used to wear.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
No,-not Bellerophon. Though the man I mean
Was lame, importunate, and bold of speech.

EURIPIDES.
I know. 'Tis Telephus the Mysian.

DIKAIOPOLIS.

Right. Yes, Telephus : lend me his rags I pray you.

EURIPIDES. lio, boy! Give him the rags of Telephus. There lie they ; just upon Thyestes' rags, And under those of Ino.

CEPHISCPHON.

Here! take them.

172

APPENDIX TO TIE Twelfth LECTURE.

DIKAIOPOLIS (putting them on)
Now Jovel who lookest on, and see'st through all*,
Your blessing, while thus wretchedly I garb me.
Pr'ythee, Euripides, a further boon,
It goes, I think, together with these rags :
The little Mysian bonnet for my head;
“ For sooth to-day I must put on the beggar,
And be still what I am, and yet not seem sot."
The audience here may know me who I am,
But like poor fools the chorus stand unwitting,
While I trick them with my flowers of rhetoric.

EURIPIDES.
A rare device, i'faith! Take it and welcome.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
“For thee, my blessing; for Telephus, my thoughtst."
'Tis well; already, words flow thick and fast.
Oh! I had near forgot—A beggar's staff, I pray.

EURIPIDES.
Here, take one, and thyself too from these doors.

DikaIOPOLIS.
(Aside.) See'st thou, my soul,-he'd drive thee from his door
Still lacking many things. Become at once
A supple, oily beggar. (Aloud.) Good Euripides,
Lend me a basket, pray;—though the bottom's
Scorch'd, 'twill do.

EURIPIDES.
Poor wretch! A basket ? What's thy need on't?

DIKAIOPOLIS.
No need beyond the simple wish to have it.

EURIPIDES.
You're getting troublesome. Come pack—be off.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
(Aside.) Faugh! Faugh!
(Aloud.) May heaven prosper thee asm --thy good mother.

EURIPIDES. Be off, I say!

DIKAIOPOLIS.

Not till thou grant'st my prayer. Only a little cup with broken rim.

* Alluding to the holes in the mantle which he holds up to the light.
+ These lines are from Euripides' tragedy of Telephus.

An allusion (which a few lines lower is again repeated) to his mother as a poor retailer of vegetables.

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173

APPENDIX TO THE TWELFTE LECTURE.

APPEYDO TO THE TWELFTH LECTURE.

DIKAIOPOLIS (putting them ca.
weergeet the sakest on, and see'st through all*,
ar ung, vue mas pretehedly I garb me.
saee, Purpues, I further boon,

tune, Trecker with these rags :
The Vrsan vendet for my head;

r en D-Jat I sust put on the beggar,
Lola tail voar I am, and yet not seem sot."

LENCE Mer Lay know me who I am,
Bapa de mar ucis the chorus stand unwitting,
: Te zem with my flowers of rhetoric.

EURIPIDES.
eierze, "tuith! Take it and welcome.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
Fre, at blessing; for Telephus, my thoughtst."
5. Lraty, words flow thick and fast.
Himni zear forgot—A beggar's staff, I pray.

EURIPIDES.
make one, and thyself too from these doors.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
tail Se'st thou, my soul,- he'd drive thee from his door
Sing many things. Become at once
Aerple, oily beggar. (Aloud.) Good Euripides,
Lasce a basket, pray;-though the bottom's

EURIPIDES.
Take it and go; for know you're quite a plague.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
(Aside.) Knows he how great a pest he is himself ?
(Aloud.) But, my Euripides ! my sweet! one thing more :
Give me a cracked pipkin stopped with sponge.

EURIPIDES. The man would rob me of a tragedy complete. There-take it, and begone.

DIKATOPOLIS.

Well! I am going.
Yet what to do? One thing I lack, whose want
Undoes me. Good, sweet Euripides !
Grant me but this, I'll ask no more, but go-
Some cabbage-leaves—a few just in my basket!

EURIPIDES.
You'll ruin me. See there! A whole play's gone!

DIKAIOPOLIS (seemingly going off
Nothing more now.

I'm really off. I am, I own,
A bore, wanting in tact to please the great.
Woe's me! Was ever such a wretch ? Alas!
I have forgot the very chiefest thing of all.
Hear me, Euripides, my dear! my darling.
Choicest ills betide me! if e'er I ask
Aught more than this ; but one-this one alone :
Throw me a pot-herb from thy mother's stock.

EURIPIDES. The fellow would insult me-shut the door. (The Encyclema revolves, and Euripides and Cephisophon retire.)

DIKAIOPOLIS.
Soul of me, thou must go without a pot-herb !
Wist thou what conflict thou must soon contend in
To proffer speech and full defence for Sparta ?
Purward, my soul! the barriers are before thee.
What, dost loiter ? hast not imbibed Euripides
And yet I blame thee not. Courage, sad heart !
And forward, though it be to lay thy head
Upon the block. Rouse thee, and speak thy mind.
Forward there! forward again! bravely heart, bravely.

Sach'd, 'twill do.

EURIPIDES.

Poor wretch! A basket? What's thy need on't?

DIKAIOPOLIS.
No need beyond the simple wish to have it.

EURIPIDES.
You're getting troublesome. Come pack— be off.

DIKAIOPOLIS.
(Aside.) Faugh! Faugh!
(Aloud.) May hearen prosper thee as—thy good mother I.

EURIPIDES.
Be off, I say!

DIRAIOPOLIS.
Not till thou grant'st my prayer.

Only a little cup with broken rim.

Alluding to the holes in the mantle which he holds up to the light. + These lines are from Euripides' tragedy of Telephus.

An allusion (which a few lines lower is again repeated) to his mother 28 a poor retailer of vegetables.

174

THE MIDDLE COMEDY,

LECTURE XIII.

1

1

Whether the Middle Comedy was a distinct species-Origin of the New

Comedy A mixed species--Its prosaic character-Whether versifica. tion is essential to Comedy-Subordinate kinds-Pieces of Character, and of Intrigue–The Comic of observation, of self-consciousness, and arbitrary Comic--Morality of Comedy-Plautus and Terence as imi. tators of the Greeks here cited and characterised for want of the Originals-Moral and social aim of the Attic Comedy-Statues of two

Comic Authors. ANCIENT critics assume the existence of a Middle Comedy, between the Old and the New. Its distinguishing characteristics are variously described: by some its peculiarity is made to consist in the abstinence from personal satire and introduction of real characters, and by others in the abolition of the chorus. But the introduction of real persons under their true names was never an indispensable requisite. Indeed, in several, even of Aristophanes' plays, we find characters in no respect historical, but altogether fictitious, but bearing significant names, after the manner of the New Comedy; while personal satire is only occasionally employed. This right of personal satire was no doubt, as I have already shown, essential to the Old Comedy, and the loss of it incapacitated the poets from throwing ridicule on public actions and affairs of state. When accordingly they confined themselves to private life, the chorus ceased at once to have any significance. However, accidental circumstances accelerated its abolition. To dress and train the choristers was an expensive undertaking; now, as Comedy with the forfeiture of its political privileges lost also its festal dignity, and was degraded into a mere amusement, the poet no longer found any rich patrons willing to take upon themselves the expense of furnishing the chorus.

Platonius mentions a further characteristic of the Middle Comedy. On account, he says, of the danger of alluding to public affairs, the comic writers had turned all their satire against serious poetry, whether epic or trayic, and sought to

WHETHER A DISTINCT SPECIES,

175

expose its absurdities and contra lictions. As a specimen of this kind he gives the Eolosikon, one of Aristophanes' latest works. This description coincides with the idea of paroly, which we placed foremost in our account of the Old Comedy Platonius adduces also another instance in the Ulysses of Cratinus, a burlesque of the Odyssey. But, in order of time, no play of Cratinus could belong to the Middle Comedy; for his death is mentioned by Aristophanes in his Peace. And as to the drama of Eupolis, in which he described what we call an Utopia, or Lubberly Land, what else was it but a parody of the poetical legends of the golden age? But in Aristophanes, not to mention bis parodies of so many tragic scenes, are not the Heaven-journey of Trygæus, and the Hell journey of Bacchus, ludicrous imitations of the deeds of Bellerophon and Hercules, sung in epic and tragic poetry? In vain therefore should we seek in this restriction to parody any distinctive peculiarity of the so-called Middle Comedy. Frolicsome caprice, and allegorical significance of composition are, poetically considered, the only essential criteria of the Old Comedy. In this class, therefore, we shall rank every work where we find these qualities, in whatever times, and under whatever circumstances, it may have been composed.

As the New Comedy arose out of a mere negation, the abolition, viz., of the old political freedom, we may easily conceive that there would be an interval of fluctuating, and tentative efforts to supply its place, before a new comic form could be developed and fully established. Hence there may have been many kinds of the Middle Comedy, many intermediate gradations, between the Old and the New; and this is the opinion of some men of learning. And, indeed, historically considered, there appears good grounds for such a view; but in an artistic point of view, a transition does not itself constitute a species.

We proceed therefore at once to the New Comedy, or that species of poetry which with us receives the appellation of Comedy. We shall, I think, form a more correct notion of it, if we consider it in its historical connexion, and from a regard to its various ingredients explain it to be a mixed and modified species, than we should were we to term it an original and pure species, as those do who either do nit themselves at all with the Old Comedy, or else :

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