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related his theory to its classical and neo-classical sources; and this procedure, I believe, has added to the value of the work, giving it some measure of completeness and coherence. In its present form, consequently, the study would gain significance from being read in connection with almost any one of the historical treatises on poetry, whether of the classical period or of the Italian or English Renaissance, and its contents would then fall into a truer perspective.

The passages from Milton upon which my discussion rests have been appended to it in a classified list (pp. 185314). In some cases, notably under the headings ‘Form,' 'Art,' 'Nature,' and 'Rhetoric,' the references are not exhaustive. The texts I have used in preparing the study, and referred to in its pages, are, for the poetry, that of Beeching (Oxford University Press, 1908), and, for the prose, that of Mitford (Pickering, London, 1851). The sonnets have been numbered as in the Oxford text; the letters and the Prolusions, as in that of Pickering. In a parenthesis after the title of such works in his prose as Milton divided into parts, references are given to these parts. I have made use of the following translations: for the Latin and the Italian verse, those of Cowper, with an occasional citation from Moody; for the Prolusions, (when possible) those given by Masson in his Life of John Milton; for the letters (with a few exceptions where I have substituted, because of their greater accuracy, the translations of Hall), those of Fellowes, given in Symmons' edition of the Prose Works of John Milton, Vol. 1; for The Second Defence of the People of England, that of Fellowes in Symmons, Vol. 6; for A Treatise on Christian Doctrine, that of Sumner. More precise references to these works will be found in the Bibliography. In a few instances

it has been necessary to supply translations of my own. In quoting the writings of Milton, I have normalized spelling and punctuation, usually taking as a guide for the poetry the Oxford Miniature Milton (1904). In citing other authors, I have not always been consistent in these particulars. With Spenser's orthography, except in his prose, I have not tampered, but that of the sixteenth-century essayists I usually have modernized. Finally, the method of reference, and the abbreviations of titles employed, both in the footnotes of my discussion and in the headings of the Illustrative Passages, have been made clear either in the List of Abbreviations of Milton's Works or in the Bibliography.




All sound aesthetic theory rests upon the assumption of a definite relationship between form and function in a work of art. The theorist, whatever his concern, be it a rosewindow or a bas-relief, a pastoral idyll or a Pindaric ode, may begin with either aspect, and gradually move to the other, but in his ultimate judgment he will merge the two, and see them as one and the same. Accordingly, the fine arts in general, when duly examined, have always been subjected to a twofold investigation involving the structure of the individual masterpiece and its end or purpose an investigation, that is, which from the beginning tends completely to associate form and function. And it appears to be true that the great modern poets, cherishing a philosophical tradition that goes back through Aristotle to Plato, have modified their theory and practice in harmony with a belief in the law of form, and, by conscious endeavor or unconscious emphasis, have led the acute and sympathetic reader to perceive the law in its varied manifestations. Poets deeply imbued with the concept, as were Dante, and Spenser, and Milton, constantly attend to the correspondence between spirit and substance, or, we may say, between form and function, and would have us realize that where, in particular cases, a maladjustment is apparent, accidental causes are at work. If the vision of the sculptor

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