Early Augustan Virgil prints for the first time in its entirety the substantial version of Virgil comprising most of Aeneid II-VI by the young royalist poet Sir John Denham in the 1630s. Denham's later published versions, The Destruction of Troy of 1656 and The Passion of Dido for Aeneas printed in his Poems and Translations of 1668, are also included for comparative purposes, alongside the couplet version of Aeneid IV by Sidney Godolphin and Edmund Waller published in 1659 with the title later used by Denham, The Passion of Dido for Aeneas. Critical introductions establish the interrelation of these versions and the pioneering status of the poets as practitioners of the Augustan style later perfected by Dryden and Pope.
Early Augustan Virgil makes accessible a substantial text by a pioneer in couplet writing and in the theory and practice of translation, vindicating Pope's distinction when he enjoins his reader to "praise the easy vigor of a line,/ Where Denham's strength and Waller's sweetness join." The volume thus puts Denham's version of Virgil sympathetically into a context where it can be seen to make an important contribution to the development of the English Augustan style, thus making a case for the formative influence of classical translation upon the development of English poetry. It also makes a contribution to the reception of Virgil and will be of interest to readers of classical and English poetry alike.
- Poetry, History, Social Science, Literary Criticism
- Ancient / Rome, Poetry, General, Ancient + Classical, European / English + Irish + Scottish + Welsh, Folklore + Mythology
- June 30, 2010
- June 30, 2010