Point out general tendency of reaction against Heroic play described in Dryden’s’ All for Love’


All for Love, staged in 1677, not only signified the downfall of the old tragedy, but also heralded the emergence of the new- the sentimental-tragedy or she-tragedy. The new tragedy is called ‘She-tragedy, because in it the central figure is a woman, and it is sentimental because in it there is excessive indulgence in emotion.

Dryden’s all for Love is a transitional play, showing the features both of the heroic play and the new She-tragedy. It was avowedly written in the imitation of, “divine Shakespeare” and it was supposed to herald the, “triumph of nature”, and the triumph of nature meant the death of the heroic play. Soon ‘admiration’ was not longer regarded as the prime emotion, but human sympathy for men and women caught in the vortex of events.

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