What is Alexander Pope’s view of Nature in his Essay On criticism?

Specifically focusing on lines 68-91? I am having trouble understanding the context of what Nature is referring to! Thank you!

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2 Answers to “What is Alexander Pope’s view of Nature in his Essay On criticism?”

  1. planers says:

    The Augustan Poets are rarely obscure, their cheif tenet being clarity, as Pope himself says,To wit is to its best advantage drestWhat so oft was said, never so well exprest.Now, in these lines, Nature clearly refers to following what is natural- that is, to avoid contrivances and artifices, which, Pope maintains,Art from that Fund each just Supply provides,Works without Show, and without Pomp presides:So to be natural is to follow nature in writing, to write clearly and circumcised by the Natural rather than fly off to artificiality and excess. This tendency arise from the fact that the Augustan, starting from its Father, John Dryden, were a reaction to the excessive obscurity, artificiality, and contrivances of the Metaphysical Poets like Andrew Marvell, John Donne, etc. Hence his condemnation of those whose wit exceed judgement, as defined as following what is natural and clear.Some, to whom Heav’n in Wit has been profuse. Want as much more, to turn it to its use,For Wit and Judgment often are at strife,Tho’ meant each other’s Aid, like Man and Wife.’Tis more to guide than spur the Muse’s Steed;Restrain his Fury, than provoke his Speed;The winged Courser, like a gen’rous Horse,Shows most true Mettle when you check his Course.To this end, he advocate following certain rules, which, he claims, were discovered by the Ancient writers, Roman, Greek, or otherwise Classical,Those Rules of old discover’d, not devis’d,Are Nature still, but Nature Methodiz’d;In this, elegance, beauty, and strength in poetry from from naturalness, clarity, and freedom from artifices, what is, in the 18th century, called ‘Wit’.

  2. cicada says:

    Can you post the lines you want info about? You will get more answers.edit – so I came back and you hadn’t posted so I will be off!