By Ezra Pound
This significant paintings, first released in 1934, is a concise assertion of Pound’s aesthetic conception. it's a primer for the reader who desires to preserve an lively, serious brain and turn into more and more delicate to the wonder and thought of the world’s most sensible literature. With attribute power and iconoclasm, Pound illustrates his precepts with indicates meticulously selected from the classics, and the concluding “Treatise on Meter” presents an illuminating essay for somebody meaning to learn and write poetry. ABC of studying screens Pound’s nice skill to open new avenues in literature for our time.
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Extra info for ABC of Reading
52 One might almost say that the whole culture of the age, at any rate the mass of the purely literary culture of the age, from 1050 to 1250 and on till1300, was concentrated on one aesthetic problem, which, as Dante put it, 'includes the whole art'. ut' consisted in putting together about six strophes of poesy so that the words and the tune should be welded together without joint and without wem. The best smith, as Dante calledArnaut Daniel, made the birds sing IN HIS WORDS; I don't mean that he merely referred to birds singing-In the canzone beginning L'aura amara Fals bruoills brancutz Clarzir Quel doutz espeissa ab fuoills.
One reads prose for the subject matter. Glance at Burton's' anatomy' as a curiosity, a sample of NON VERSE which has qualities of poetry but that can· not be confounded with it. English prose is alive in Florio's Montaigne; Urquhart's Rabelais; Fielding; Jane Austen; the novelists that everyone reads; Kipling; H. James. James' prefaces tell what 'writing a novel' means. 61 Chapter Seven It doesn't matter which leg of your table you make first, so long as the table has four legs and will stand up solidly when you have finished it.
Marlowe translated the Amores. And before that Gavin Douglas had made something of the Aeneids that I, at any rate, like better than Virgil's Latin. From Chaucer you can learn (1) whatever came over into the earliest English that. one can read without a die· tionary, but for which a glossary is needed; (2) and the specifically ENGLISH quality or component. Landor's 58 dialogues of Chaucer, Petrarch and Boccaccio, are the best real criticism of Chaucer we have. There are anthologies of early English verse.
ABC of Reading by Ezra Pound