1876 ENGLISH POETRY 1579-1830: SPENSER AND THE TRADITION

Rev. Richard Farmer

Robert Carruthers, in Chambers's Cyclopaedia of English Literature, 3rd ed. (1876; 1879) 4:391.



In 1766, DR. RICHARD FARMER, of Emanuel College, Cambridge (1735-1797), published an Essay on the Learning of Shakspeare, which was considered to have for ever put an end to the dispute concerning the classic knowledge of the great dramatist. Farmer certainly shewed that Shakspeare had implicitly followed English translations of the ancient authors — as North's Plutarch — copying even their errors; but more careful and reverent study of the poet has weakened the force of many of the critic's conclusions. The due appreciation of Shakspeare had not then begun.