The Prince Of Dullness Poem Analysis
The element of art is also relevant in the poem. Art is very important as the subject of the poem and touches Shadwell where it most humiliates his pretensions to music and literature. Shadwell is the “new Arion” and his name echoes from no less than quarter called “Pissing Alley”. The setting of Shadwell’s coronation and the consecration are comically presented. Shadwell is called ‘young Ascanius’. Like Hannibal, Shadwell swears, Dryden lets him down with images of deflation.
In Flecknoe’s final advice to Shadwell, the latter is related to old fashioned poetasters. He is also contrasted with Ben Johnson and Etherege. Dryden’s aim is twofold – to condemn poetasters and to uphold the values represented by Ben Jonson and Etherege. Since Shadwell professed to be a follower of Ben Jonson without understanding his art, Dryden mocks him: Nor let thy mountain belly make