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By Alexander Gerard

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278. position, position, the seeds frdrii which, in Aristotle9s judgment (c), succeeding writers reared both tragedy and comedy, and from which, in the; opinion of Quintilian (d), even orators might produce all the virtues of their art. On account of original arid extensive invention, thus amazingly displayed, his title to the first . rank of genius, has been acknowleged by all capable and impartial judges. The Eneid is perhaps more correct and faultless than the Iliad; but few have pretended that Virgil is the greater poet.

Cap. i. ther, at least, he has, in matters of science,: improved on the discoveries of his predecessors, and reduced principles formerly known, to a greater degree of simplicity arid. consistence, or traced them through a train of consequences hitherto unknown? Or, iu thţ arts, designed some new work, different from those of his predecessors, though not perhaps excelling them? Whatever falls short of this, is servile imitation, or a dull effort of plodding industry, which, as not implying invention, can be deemed no proof of genius, whatever capacity, skill, or diligence it may evidence.

Operienda sunt quȰdam, live ostendi non debent, sive exprimi prodignitate non possunt, ut fecit Timanthes, &c. Quint, fnjl. Orat. lib. ii. cap. 14. (q) Similis in pictura ratio est, in qua Zeuxim, et Polygnotum, et Timanthem, et eorum qui non funt usi plus quam. quatuor coloribus, formas et lineamenta laudamus. At in Aetione, Nicomacho, Protogene, Apelle, jam persecta fun$ pmnia. Cic. Brut. 舒PrȰcipua ejus in arte venustas suit, &c, Plin. ib. Ingenio et gratia, quam ipse in se raaxime ja^iat, Apelles est prȰstantiuimus..

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An essay on genius by Alexander Gerard


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