Alexander Pope: Imitations of Horace

(2308 words)

In the five years between February 1733 and March 1738 Pope published eleven poems that he directly described as Imitations of Horace. In a sense, of course, he had imitated Horace all his life – the four Ethic Epistles ( “Moral Essays”), An Epistle to Dr Arbuthnot and the Epilogue to the Satires: Dialogues I & II were all deeply influenced by the Roman poet's example. Pope's admiration for Horace was explicit in as early a work as An Essay on Criticism, 1711:

Horace still charms with graceful Negligence,
And without Method talks us into Sense,
Will like a Friend familiarly convey
The truest Notion in the easiest way (653-6)
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Gordon, Ian. "Imitations of Horace". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 21 March 2002
[, accessed 25 September 2016.]