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Supplanted Adam, and by vanquishing
Now enter and begin to save mankind. 635
Thus they the Son of God our Saviour meek Sung victor, and from heav'nly feast refresh'd Brought on his way with joy; he unobserv'd Home to his mother's house private return’d.
Aristot. Poet. Cap. 6. Tragædia mimesis praxeos Spondaias, &c. Tragædia est imitatio actionis seriæ, &c. per misericor
diam et metum perficiens talium affectuum lustrationem.
Of that sort of Dramatic Poem which is call'd Tragedy.
TRAGEDY, as it was anciently compos’d, T hath been ever held the gravest, moralest, and most profitable of all other poems: therefore said by Aristotle to be of power by raising pity and fear, or terror, to purge the mind of those and such like passions, that is, to temper and reduce them to just measure with a kind of delight, stirr’d up by reading or seeing those passions well imitated. Nor is Nature wanting in her own effects to make good his assertion : for so in physic things of melancholic hue and quality are us'd against melancholy, four against four, salt to remove falt humors. Hence philosophers and other gravest writers, as Cicero, Plutarch and others, frequently cite out of tragic poets, both to adorn and illustrate their discourse. The Apostle Paul himself thought it not unworthy to insert a verse of Euripides into the text of Holy Scripture, I Cor. xv. 33. and Paræus commenting on the Revelation, divides the whole book as a tragedy, into acts distinguish'd each by a chorus of heavenly harpings and song between. Heretofore men in highest dignity have labor'd not a little to be thought able to compose a tragedy. Of that honor Dionysius the elder was no less ambitious, than before of his attaining to the tyranny. Augustus Cæsar also had begun his Ajax, but unable to please his own judgment with what he had begun, left it unfinish'd. Seneca the philosopher is by some thought the author of those tragedies (at least the