The cause of the Pope-Blackmore feud is by no means easy to explain, especially with so many speculations as to why their antagonism started in the first place. One possible explanation comes from Abigail Williams who claims that Pope and Blackmore’s c...
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...re if he knew how he would respond? After all, Pope decided to write a poem mocking a biblical text, so he understood the backlash he would receive from critics like Blackmore. By writing such a blasphemous poem, if he intended to publish it or not, Pope was asking for trouble, which places the blame entirely on his shoulders.
Peri Bathous is a mock Ars Poetica, or Art of Poetry, a parodic treatise on how not to write poetry. It is a humorous inversion of Longinus's classical treatise, Peri Hupsous: or, The Art of the Sublime (1st century AD). Pope takes Longinus's description of the five sources of the sublime – grandeur of thought; inspired passion; the effective use of rhetorical figures; nobility of diction; and the dignity of the overall composition – and ironically advocates their opposites as guidance in the modern poet's quest to achieve true profundity.
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