Brander Matthews (1852–1929). The Short-Story. 1907.By Joseph Addison (1672–1719)
Notes to Constantia and Theodosius
|IN the Spectator of Steele and Addison there are a few stories, apologues most of them, and told in the leisurely fashion of the true essayist. The story here selected is as good as any; and it may be accepted as a specimen of the art of narrative in England at the beginning of the eighteenth century. It first appeared as No. 164 in the Spectator, published on September 7, 1711.
|This story has several situations which are dramatic in themselves, but which the writer does not present dramatically. One or another of these might have been taken as the center of a true short-story. Modern readers are likely to dismiss the tale as dull, simply because the writer did not know how to get the full effect of his material. He failed to select a central situation or a central character and to focus the interest of the reader on this. In fact this tale is an excellent example of the story which is short but which is not a short-story.