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His first play, The Wild Gallant, was in prose ; it is coarse and not much enlivened by wit, and it was not well received. He seems to have convinced himself that the attraction of rhyme was necessary to please the fastidious audiences for which he had to write; vi PREFACE.
The unity of place is where the play is set, where the action takes place.
This unity says that the play should have a consistent setting.
And the actions in his plays can sometimes be the actions of a mans entire life.
So in short, John Dryden is saying that the three unities can be, and are, forgotten.
The unity of time is completely forgotten, some of his works are stretched on for generations.
Settings in one play go from one country to another, city to city.If there is one main action and that action is completed then the audience know exactly what is going on.But if there are sub-plots and other things that are not fully completed then there will be an element of suspense, t will keep the audience interested.This does not mean there cannot be many actions in the play.It means that all these actions must have something to do with the overall, also know as sub-plots.In the prologue to the tragedy of Aurung- zebe, or the Great Mogul (*i^, he says that he finds it more difficult to please himself than his audience, and is inclined to damn his own play : Not that it's worse than what before he writ, But he has now another taste of wit ; And, to confess a truth, though out of time, Grows weary of his long-loved mistress, Rhyme. Whether the existing French school of drama is superior or inferior to the English. Whether the Elizabethan dramatists were in all points superior to those of Dry den's own time. Whether plays arc more perfect in proportion as they conform to the dramatic rules laid down by the ancients. Whether the substitution of rhyme for blank verse in serious plays is an improvement. Passion, he proceeds, is too fierce to be bound in fetters; and the sense of Shakespeare's unapproachable superiority, Shakespeare, whose masterpieces dispense with rhyme, inclines him to quit the stage altogether. The first point is considered in the remarks ofj Crites (Sir Robert Howard), with which the discussion opens. In the enforced leisure which his residence at Charlton during the plague brought him, he thought over the whole sub ject, and this Essay of Dramatic Poesy was the result. In the course of time Dryden modified more or less the judgment in favour of rhyme which he had given in the Essay. By limiting the amount of time that can be represented in a play, you are limiting the potential of the writer.And by doing this you are not giving the viewer what they want, a good show.