His greatest contribution to poetic art consisted in the perfection which he attained in the phalaecian, the pure iambic, and the scazon metres, and in the ease and grace with which he used the language of familiar intercourse, as distinct from that of the creative imagination, of the rostra, and of the schools, to give at once a lifelike and an artistic expression to his feelings.
To enumerate a few examples of this which are already definitely known: we find that the forms of legal and business documents became more precise; the mechanical arts of casting in bronze on a core and of moulding figures and pottery were brought to the highest pitch of excellence; and portraiture in the round on its highest plane was better than ever before and admirably lifelike, revealing careful study of the external anatomy of the individual.
An arched opening in this front reveals the central group of eight figures surrounding the tomb, that of Mary Magdalen in the foreground being remarkably lifelike and expressive.
In command and in expression of passion and of pathos, of noble and of evil nature, it equals any other work of this great dramatic poet; in the lifelike fusion of high comedy with deep tragedy it excels them all.
They were so lifelike, I thought they were angel visions which the artist had caught and bound in earthly forms.
I believe they gave me more pleasure than anything else at the Fair: they were so lifelike and wonderful to my touch.