Talk:Heroic drama

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Origins[edit]

Why not point out where heroic plays come from? Could include Dryden having given much of the credit to Davenant and Orrery in his "Of Heroick Plays" (1672), an essay which incidentally might as well get named. Also should point out that The Indian-Queen (prem. Jan 1664) by Sir Robert Howard (with Dryden's assistance) was the first rhyming heroic play staged in London and that Orrery's The Generall had been staged earlier in Dublin. Contemporaries associated Orrery with the heroic mode more than they did Dryden, since that was about all Orrery put on the stage. The Dryden-Howard controversy over rhyme might also be worth a sentence or two. These seem like sensible things to add that won't bulk up the present article unnecessarily. Eawonder (talk) 19:55, 15 June 2008 (UTC)

You're right. In fact, those should be mentioned, and I would recommend that you make the changes.
Just for myself, I see D'Avenant as trying for a slightly different objective. I don't think he was trying to set up quite the same taxonomy of stage plays, but, rather, trying to justify and bring over the French heroic drama. I think he had to be "too slavish" an imitator of the French. The real fight that we ignore at our peril is the fight with the audience. 1659, and plays are licentious, corrupting, foppish horrors, and 1660 they're not. I've always read D'Avenant as trying to pick up on that line from Sidney, that plays can elevate the audience, that he's trying to save the stage from moral attacks by going to heroic plays as a salvation. "You think people will be corrupted by sexy plays? Well, they can't. However, they can be made noble by heroic plays!"
Still, I know far too little of Orrery's part. Please do feel free to make changes to the article. I may have been the first author of it, but I regard myself as more of a satire and criticism guy, and I will gladly and joyfully hand off to anyone who knows more detail. Geogre (talk) 12:41, 10 July 2008 (UTC)