poet George Chapman

George Chapman

George Chapman
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George Chapman was an English dramatist, translator, and poet. He was a classical scholar whose work shows the influence of Stoicism. Chapman has been identified as the Rival Poet of Shakespeare's sonnets by William Minto, and as an anticipator of the Metaphysical Poets of the 17th century. Chapman is best remembered for his translations of Homer's Iliad and Odyssey, and the Homeric Batrachomyomachia.

Life and work

Chapman was born at Hitchin in Hertfordshire. There is conjecture that he studied at Oxford but did not take a degree, though no reliable evidence affirms this. We know very little about Chapman's early life, but Mark Eccles uncovered records that reveal much... more »

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George Chapman Quotations

  • ''Who to himself is law, no law doth need, Offends no law, and is a king indeed.''
    George Chapman (c. 1559-1634), British dramatist, poet, translator. repr. In Plays and Poems of George Chapman: The Tragedies, ed. Thomas Marc Parrott...
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  • ''Pure innovation is more gross than error.''
    George Chapman (1559-1634), British dramatist, poet, translator. King Henry, in Bussy D'Ambois, act 1, sc. 2, l. 38 (1607).
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  • ''For one heat, all know, doth drive out another, One passion doth expel another still.''
    George Chapman (c. 1559-1634), British dramatist, poet, translator. repr. In Plays and Poems of George Chapman: The Comedies, ed. Thomas Marc Parrott ...
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Best Poem of George Chapman


There is no truth of any good
To be discerned on earth ; and, by conversion,
Nought therefore simply bad; but as the stuff
Prepared for Arras pictures, is no picture
Till it be formed, and man hath cast the beams
Of his imaginous fancy thorough it,
In forming ancient kings and conquerors
As he conceives they looked and were attired,
Though they were nothing so: so all things here
Have all their price set down from men's conceits,
Which make all terms and actions good or bad,
And are but pliant and well-coloured threads
Put into feigned images of truth.

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