Quotation by Friedrich Von Schlegel

There are ancient and modern poems which breathe, in their entirety and in every detail, the divine breath of irony. In such poems there lives a real transcendental buffoonery. Their interior is permeated by the mood which surveys everything and rises infinitely above everything limited, even above the poet's own art, virtue, and genius; and their exterior form by the histrionic style of an ordinary good Italian buffo.
Friedrich Von Schlegel (1772–1829), German philosopher. Aphorism 42 in Selected Aphorisms from the Lyceum (1797), translated by Ernst Behler and Roman Struc, Dialogue on Poetry and Literary Aphorisms, Pennsylvania University Press (1968).
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