Nor could Shakespeare have failed to bring out with greater variety and distinctness the dramatic features in Henry VII., whom Ford depicts with sufficient distinctness to give some degree of individuality to the figure, but still with a tenderness of touch which would have been much to the credit of the dramatist's skill had he been writing in the Tudor age.
The Hamburgische Dramaturgic (1767-1768), Lessing's commentary on the performances of the National Theatre, is the first modern handbook of the dramatist's art.
Johnson's wide grasp of the discourse and knowledge of human nature enable him in a hundred entangled passages to go straight to the dramatist's meaning.
1643 was, according to the latest authorities (for Cornelian dates have often been altered), a very great year in the dramatist's life.
These four great poems, one in sublimity of spirit and in supremacy of style, were succeeded next year by a fourfold gift of even greater price, Les Quatre Vents de l'esprit: the first book, that of satire, is as full of fiery truth and radiant reason as any of his previous work in that passionate and awful kind; the second or dramatic book is as full of fresh life and living nature, of tragic humour and of mortal pathos, as any other work of the one great modern dramatist's; the third or lyric book would suffice to reveal its author as incomparably and immeasurably the greatest poet of his age, and one great among the greatest of all time; the fourth or epic book is the sublimest and most terrible of historic poems - a visionary pageant of French history from the reign and the revelries of Henry IV.