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Poetry of Opposition and RevolutionDryden to Wordsworth$
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Howard Erskine-Hill

Print publication date: 1996

Print ISBN-13: 9780198121770

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: October 2011

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780198121770.001.0001

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Early Poems to The Rape of the Locke

Early Poems to The Rape of the Locke

(p.56) (p.57) 2 Early Poems to The Rape of the Locke
Poetry of Opposition and Revolution

Howard Erskine-Hill

Oxford University Press

Seen in their political aspect, Pope's works may be divided into two parts, before and after what was for him the most dangerous political crisis of his life: the Atterbury Plot of 1722. Before and after this divide Pope deploys a poetry of obliquity and innuendo which he inherited from the last twelve years of Dryden, but in the transitional 1729 Dunciad, still more so in the Epistles and Imitations of Horace that follow, he blends with his more personal tones a national and oratorical manner. He then becomes one of the strongest voices to articulate a nation-wide campaign of opposition to Britain under the Hanoverian establishment. Pope's earlier work, by comparison, notably The Rape of the Lock, is circumspect, exploratory, delicate, yet wide in implication. This chapter discusses something of these two areas of Pope's work.

Keywords:   Pope, The Rape of the Lock, poetry, Dunciad, Imitations of Horace

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