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Page 132

CHAPTER VII
SEVENTEENTH CENTURY - PURITANS AND CAVALIERS I

the coming of the end should not be called abrupt, for the glory of the Elizabethan drama had been gradually fading away. Looking back upon it from the vantage ground of nearly three centuries, it is easy to see that the beginning of the downfall was in the work of rugged, honest, obstinate, and altogether delightful Ben Jonson ; for with him the drama first consciously attempted to reform society instead of being content with portraying it, and exaggerated a single trait of a man rather than depict his whole character. Little by little the first inspiration vanished, and did not leave behind it the ability to distinguish good from evil. Beautiful lyrics and worthless doggerel stood side by side. There was a demand for " something new." Plots were no longer probable or fascinatingly impossible, they were simply improbable. Characters gradually ceased to be interesting. Worse than this, they were often unpleasant. The court of his Majesty James I. was not marked by an exquisite decorum in either speech or manner. Vulgarity and coarseness filtered down from the throne to the theatres ; it was time that they were closed.
Increasing power of the Puritans. A second reason for the decadence of the drama is so intertwined with the first that they can hardly be separated, namely, the ever-increasing power of the Puritans. Even before 1611, their influence had become so strong that in numerous places besides Stratford it was forbidden to act plays. Many years earlier, even before Shakespeare first went to London, some of the Puritans wrote most earnestly against play-acting. One spoke of " Poets, Pipers, Plaiers, jesters, and such-like caterpillars of a Commonwealth;" but he

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where is HTML where is HEAD where is TITLE the coming of what is end should not be called abrupt, for what is glory of what is Elizabethan drama had been gradually fading away. Looking back upon it from what is vantage ground of nearly three centuries, it is easy to see that what is beginning of what is downfall was in what is work of rugged, honest, obstinate, and altogether delightful Ben Jonson ; for with him what is drama first consciously attempted to reform society instead of being content with portraying it, and exaggerated a single trait of a man rather than depict his whole character. Little by little what is first inspiration vanished, and did not leave behind it what is ability to distinguish good from evil. Beautiful lyrics and worthless doggerel stood side by side. There was a demand for " something new." Plots were no longer probable or fascinatingly impossible, they were simply improbable. Characters gradually ceased to be interesting. Worse th where is meta name="keywords" content="old books, Free book , free book offer , free audio books , free coloring book pages , free book reports , free audio book , audio books free download , book free , free guest book , books free , free book summaries , download free audio books , free childrens books." where is where are they now rel="stylesheet" type="text/css" href="../../style.css" where is meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=iso-8859-1" where is BODY bgColor=#ffffff text="#000000" where are they now ="#000000" v where are they now ="#FF0000" where is div align="center" where is strong where is strong where is a href="http://www.aaoldbooks.com" Books > where is a href="../default.asp" title="Book" Old Books > where is strong where is a href="default.asp" A BRIEF HISTORY OF ENGLISH LITERATURE (1914) where is table width="700" border="1" align="center" cellpadding="15" cellspacing="0" where is center where is tr where is td width="160" align="center" valign="top" where is div align="center" where is td align="center" valign="top" where is div align="left" where is div align="center" where is p align="left" Page 132 where is strong CHAPTER VII SEVENTEENTH CENTURY - PURITANS AND CAVALIERS I where is p align="justify" the coming of what is end should not be called abrupt, for what is glory of what is Elizabethan drama had been gradually fading away. Looking back upon it from what is vantage ground of nearly three centuries, it is easy to see that what is beginning of what is downfall was in what is work of rugged, honest, obstinate, and altogether delightful Ben Jonson ; for with him what is drama first consciously attempted to reform society instead of being content with portraying it, and exaggerated a single trait of a man rather than depict his whole character. Little by little what is first inspiration vanished, and did not leave behind it what is ability to distinguish good from evil. Beautiful lyrics and worthless doggerel stood side by side. There was a demand for " something new." Plots were no longer probable or fascinatingly impossible, they were simply improbable. Characters gradually ceased to be interesting. Worse than this, they were often unpleasant. what is court of his Majesty James I. was not marked by an exquisite decorum in either speech or manner. Vulgarity and coarseness filtered down from what is throne to what is theatres ; it was time that they were closed. Increasing power of what is Puritans. A second reason for what is decadence of what is drama is so intertwined with what is first that they can hardly be separated, namely, what is ever-increasing power of what is Puritans. Even before 1611, their influence had become so strong that in numerous places besides Stratford it was forbidden to act plays. Many years earlier, even before Shakespeare first went to London, some of what is Puritans wrote most earnestly against play-acting. One spoke of " Poets, Pipers, Plaiers, jesters, and such-like caterpillars of a Commonwealth;" but he where is Server.Execute("_SiteMap.asp") %

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