"Tragedy, then, is a representation of an action that is worth serious attention, complete in itself, and of some amplitude; in language enriched by a variety of artistic devices appropriate to the several parts of the play; presented in the form of action, not narration; by means of pity and fear bringing about the purgation of such emotion."

"Art is not an imitation of nature but its metaphysical supplement, raised up beside it in order to overcome it . . . Tragedy reveals the essential contrariety at the heart of the universe."