Four Ages of Poetry

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Thomas Love Peacock (1785—1866) satirical novelist and poet

Johann Joachim Winckelmann (1717—1768) German archaeologist and art historian, born in Prussia

Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792—1822) poet

A Defence of Poetry


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A literary essay by Peacock, published 1820. It makes ironic use of the argument advanced by 18th‐cent. cultural historians such as J. J. Winckelmann (1717–68), that as society progresses, poetry deteriorates in inevitable stages. Shelley replied in his Defence of Poetry.

Subjects: Literature.

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