Mac Flecknoe Background

Mac Flecknoe Background

MacFlecnoe is one of the four major satires of John Dryden. The poem is of the nature of a personal satire having for its target Thomas Shadwell, who had offended Dryden with his Whig leanings. But the sole basis of his satire is literary. As Dryden was a versatile literary artist, he wrote almost in every form of literary work except prose fiction. Flecnoe was a voluminous Irish poet popularly considered to be very dull; Dryden has no personal grievance against him. Dryden has presumed that Flecnoe has numerous progeny and therefore many contenders for the throne after him. However his choice falls on MacFlecnoe who is dullest of all. MacFecnoe is one of the most famous mock-heroic verses in the English tradition. Dryden attacks his one time friend Thomas Shedwell as the right heir of Richard Flecnoe a recently deceased playwright and poet. The poem is written in the form of iambic-pentameter.

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