And Fielding, 1752

“According to Fielding the whole world of letters was becoming a ‘democracy, or rather a downright anarchy’; and there was no one to enforce the old laws, since, as he wrote in the Covent Garden Journal (1752, no. 23,1), even the ‘offices of criticism’ had been taken over by ‘a large body of irregulars’ who had been admitted ‘into the realm of criticism without knowing one word of the ancient laws’.”

Ian Watt, The Rise of the Novel, Studies in Defoe, Richardson and Fielding, The Hogarth Press, London, 1987 (1957) p. 58.


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