NOTE N
In Poetry As An Art from "Preface To Poetry"

To Boileau, writing in 1674, the pagan deities offered the poet some of his noblest opportunities:

Tout prend un corps, une âme, un esprit, un visage.
Chaque vertu devient une divinité:
Minerve est la prudence, et Vénus la beauté.
Ce n'est plus la vapeur qui produit Ic tonnerre,
C'est Jupiter armé pour effrayer la terre .

Without such ornaments, Boileau feels, 'la poésie est morte' (L'Art Poetique, iii. 150 ff.). In course of time the very opposite came to be true, and the god became a gorgon to the poem in which he appeared.

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