Dept. of English Sherubtse College, Bhutan
MAC FLECKNOE - John Dryden
In Restoration period, in 1660 was a nation divided against itself. The plague of 1665- 70,000 people died in London alone. In September 1666- The Great fire of London.13, 000 houses destroyed. As mentioned England was in bad condition. The literature of the period was influenced by the writings of the classical poets such as Virgil, Horace, and Ovid. They tend to return Classical Period. The restoration
Period was marked by an advance in colonization and overseas trade, by Dutch wars, by the great plague and the great fire of London, by the Whig and Tory parties and by the Popish plot.
Mock‐heroic, written in an ironically grand style that is comically incongruous with the ‘low’ or trivial subject treated. This adjective is commonly applied to mock epics, but serves also for works or parts of works using the same comic method in various forms other than that of the full‐scale mock‐epic poem.
Heroic couplet is a traditional form for English poetry, commonly used for epic and narrative poetry. It refers to poems constructed from sequence of rhyming pairs of iambic pentameter lines. The rhyme is always masculine used in the heroic couplet first pioneered by Geoffrey Chaucer in the Legend
Of Good Women and The Canterbury Tales. Chaucer is also widely credited with first extensive use of iambic pentameter.
The mock heroic style was popular in the Post-Restoration.
MacFlecknoe" traces its "hero’s rise to stupidity in verse deliberately mimicking the style of and alluding to the Aeneid and other epics. Like the Odyssey, it starts in a kind of Olympus, only it's the realm of
Nonsense, until recently ruled by Flecknoe. The dying king of dullness searches for a successor and, by virtue of his vices (as it were) MacFlecknoe (Shadwell) gets the nod. The rest of the poem develops by a pattern of mock praise of poetic vices wherein "success" is failure