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INtroduftion. That 'tis as great 4 fault to judge ill% as
to write ill, and a more dangerous one to the public,

That a true Taste is as rare to be found, as a true Gc»

nius, f 9 to 18,
That most men are born with some Taste, but spoiled by false

Education,^ 19 to 25.

The Multitude of Critics, and causes of them., $ 26 to 45.

That we are to study our own Taste, and know the Li-

mits of it, $46 to 67.

Nature the best guide of Judgment, jf 68 to 87.

Jmprov'd by Art and Rules, which are but methodis'd

Nature, jf 88.

Rules derived from the Prailice of the Ancient Poets,

tf id. to 110.

That therefore the Ancients are necessary to be study 'd by

a Critic, particularly Homer aud Yirgil, tf 120 to


Of Licenses, and the use of them by the Ancients, * 140

to 180.

Reverence due to the Ancients, and praise of them,

j 181, tff.

PART II. Ver. 203, etc.

Causes hindering a true Judgment. 1. Pride, $ 208.

2. Imperfect Learning, ^215. 3. Judging by parts,

and not by the whole, ^233/0288. Critics in Wit,

Language, Versification, only, f 288. 305. 339, etc.

4. Being too hard to please, or too apt to admire, $384.

5. Partiality — too much love to a Sect, — to the Ancients or Moderns, f 394. 6. Prejudice or Prevention, •$ 408. 7. Singularity, ^424. 8. Inconstancy, f 430. 9. Party Spirit, jf 452, etc. 10. Envy, f 466. Against Envy and in praise os Good-nature, f 508, etc. Wbex Severity is chiefly to be used by Critics, f 526, etc.

PART III, Ver. 56o, etc, Rules for the Conduct of Manners in a Critic, 1. Candour, jfr 563. Modesty, f 566. Good-breeding, •jt 572. Sincerity and Freedom of advice, f 578. 2. When one's Counsel is to be restrained, f 584. Character of an incorrigible Poet, f 600. And of an impertinent Critic, f 610, etc. Character of a good Critic, ^629. The History of Criticism, and Characters of the best Critics, Aristotle, f 645. Horace, jj 653. Dionysius, f 665. Petronius, ]t 667. Quintilian, f 670. Longinus, f 675. Of the Decay of Criticism, and its Revival. Erasmus, f 693. Vida, f 705. Boileau, 3^714. Lord Roscommon, f/f. f 725. Conclusion.





»' rj ^ IS hard to fay, if greater want of skill

A Appear in writing or in judging ill; But of the two, less dang'rous is th'ofFence To tire our patience, than mislead our fense.


An Essay.} The Poem is in one book, but divided into three principal parts or members. The first [to * 201.] gives rules for the Study of the Art os Criticism: the second [from thence to } 560.] exposes theCauses of wrong 'Judgment; and the third [from thence to the end] marks out the Morals of the Critic.

In order to a right conception of this poem, it will be necessary to observe, that tho' it be intitled simply An Essay on Criticism, yet several of the precepts relate equally to the good writing as well as to the true judging of a poem. This is (b far from violating the Unity of the Subject, that it preserves and compleats it: or from disordering the regularity of the Form, that it adds beauty to it, as will appear by the following considerations: 1. It was impossible to give a full and exact idea of the Art of Poetical Criticism, without considering at the fame time the Art of Poetry; so far as Poetry is an Art. These therefore being closely connected in nature, the Author has with much judgment reciprocally interwoven the precepts of each thro' hi»

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