Matthew Prior, Alma: or, The Progress of the Mind

Pat Rogers (University of South Florida)
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Matthew Prior’s Alma, a philosophic comedy in verse, is generally considered one of the poet’s most substantial and impressive works. It came late in his career, first appearing in his Poems on Several Occasions (1718), a collection published by Jacob Tonson and John Barber with the support of influential patrons such as Lord Bathurst and Lord Harley (later second Earl of Oxford), as well as friends such as John Arbuthnot and Alexander Pope. The author gave careful attention to the text and, since it was never reprinted in his lifetime, apart from a derivative Dublin edition in 1719, the earliest version remains authoritative. At least ten further editions of the Poems appeared over the course of the century. There was a Latin translation (1763) by Rev. Thomas Martin, master of…

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Citation: Rogers, Pat. "Alma: or, The Progress of the Mind". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 28 July 2020 [, accessed 06 December 2023.]

39330 Alma: or, The Progress of the Mind 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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