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" Nothing can less display knowledge, or less exercise invention, than to tell how a shepherd has lost his companion, and must now feed his flocks alone, without any judge of his skill in piping ; and how one god asks another god what is become of Lycidas,... "
Lives of the Most Eminent English Poets: With Critical Observations on Their ... - Page 141
by Samuel Johnson - 1854
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Death in Milton's Poetry

Clay Daniel - Literary Criticism - 1994 - 183 pages
...Fair Infant." The impression created by Milton's modification is apparent in Dr. Johnson's summary of "how one god asks another god what is become of Lycidas, and how neither god can tell."16 As Johnson perceived, in Lycidas none of the classical gods mourns as they do in classical...
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John Milton: 1732-1801

John T. Shawcross - Reference - 1995 - 452 pages
...supplies. Nothing can )<# less display knowledge, or less exercise invention, than to tell how a i jic' shepherd has lost his companion, and must now feed...become of Lycidas, and how neither god can tell. He who "*' " 293 thus grieves will excite no sympathy; he who thus praises will confer no honour. This poem...
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Annoying the Victorians

James Russell Kincaid - Literary Criticism - 1995 - 271 pages
...trappings of Lycidas: "We know that they never drove a field, and that they had no flocks to batten He who thus grieves will excite no sympathy; he who thus praises will confer no honour."11 To Tennyson as well, the grief that is expressed in figures of cankered roses, frosted flowers,...
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The Cambridge Companion to Milton

Dennis Danielson - Literary Criticism - 1999 - 297 pages
...Cambridge University? 'Nothing', he concludes, 'can less display knowledge or less exercise invention than to tell how a shepherd has lost his companion...tell. He who thus grieves will excite no sympathy; and he who thus praises will confer no honour' (quoted in Patrides, 60-1). What Johnson is objecting...
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Genre and Ethics: The Education of an Eighteenth-century Critic

Edward Tomarken - Literary Criticism - 2002 - 284 pages
...imagery, such as a college easily supplies. Nothing can less display knowledge or less exercise invention than to tell how a shepherd has lost his companion...excite no sympathy; he who thus praises will confer no honor. (1:2739) By 1779, when Johnson published this assessment in his Life of Milton, the conventions...
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The Threshold of English Prose

Henry Arthur Treble - English prose literature - 1930 - 240 pages
...such as a College easily supplies. Nothing can less display knowledge, or less exercise invention, than to tell how a shepherd has lost his companion,...yet a grosser fault. With these trifling fictions are mingled the most awful and sacred truths, such as ought never to be polluted with such irreverend...
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Geschichte der Literaturkritik: Das späte 18. Jahrhundert, das Zeitalter der ...

René Wellek - Criticism - 1978 - 754 pages
...no flocks to batten«. 19. ebenda: »Nothing can less display knowledge or less exercise invention than to tell how a shepherd has lost his companion...excite no sympathy; he who thus praises will confer no honor.« 20. ebenda, } (Lyttelton), 456: »It is sufficient blame to say that it is pastoral.« 21....
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