Rape of the Lock, Mock Epic

Length: 5 Pages 1150 Words

The Rape of the Lock: A Comedy! The inspiration for The Rape of the Lock was an actual incident among Pope's acquaintances in which Robert, Lord Petre, cut off lock of Arabella Fermor's hair, and the young people's families fell into strife as a result. John Caryll, another member of the same circle of prominent Roman Catholic, asked Pope to write a light poem that you put the episode into a humorous perspective and reconcile the two families, since it was hard enough being Catholic's in a Anglican country during the early 1700's. Alexander Pope's The Rape of the Lock is an outstanding English example of a mock epic. What is a mock epic? A mock-epic or (mock-heroic) in terms of a literary form that burlesques the epic by treating a trivial subject in the "grand style" of uses that epic formulas to make a trivial subject ridiculous by ludicrously overstating it. Usually the characteristics of the classical epic are employed, particularly the formal statement of theme; the invocation to a deity; depictions of warriors (especially their dress and equipment); the grandiose speeches (challenges, defiance, boastings) of the heroes; battles; and the involvement of supernatural machinery (gods directing of participating in the act Continue...


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Most epic heroes share certain characteristics like an imposing stature, someone who has national or international importance, superhuman courage, and someone of great historical or legendary significance, like the Devil from Paradise Lost and unlike Belinda from The Rape of the Lock. 1-4), he caused the fall of humanity and took away our innocence. In addition, Belinda is not some one of historical or legendary significance because Arabella Fermor the real person she is meant to portray was just a courtier, and has only become famous due to Pope's literary masterpiece The Rape of the Lock that is meant to satirize not immortalize her. Finally, the devil is someone of historical and legendary significance because he is responsible for, "man's first disobedience and the fruit of that forbidden tree whose mortal taste brought death into the world and he caused all our woe with the loss of Eden..." (Milton I. 1-3), which are quite similar to the formal statement of theme and invocation Virgil's Aeneid (I. In the case of The Rape of the Lock it is the trivial act of stealing a piece of hair, which causes strife between the two families, where in epics like Aeneid and Paradise Lost it sets up the great battles and quests that will take place. The Devil has a very imposing stature as described here, "... in bulk as huge as whom the fables name of monstrous size, Titanian, or Earth-born, that warred on Jove, Briareos or Typhon ..."(Milton I. The depiction of the hero or heroine is another crucial element of an epic or mock-heroic because it introduces the hero or heroine, which is important to the rest of the epic of mock epic. ------------------------------------------------------------------------Bibliography. In classical literature, convention demanded an opening address to the Muses, requesting their assistance in the writing. 6) amongst a crowd of, "fair nymphs and well dressed youths" (Pope II. He is also internationally important because he is the eternal foe of god. 27) and her presence demands attention as described that, "every eye was fixed on her alone" (Pope II. Firstly, the Devil from Paradise Lost is a prime example of an epic hero. Pope's The Rape of the Lock uses highly polished verses, satirical heroic couplets, wit, and intelligence within the epic formula to satirize the absurdities and follies of his society and this is where we find the most delicate humour within the poem.