Dryden’s uses the heroic couplet for satirical purposes.
The poem identifies itself as a satire of which the subject is “the True-blue Protestant Poet T.S.” referring to the poet Thomas Shadwell.
Ultimately, he chooses his son Thomas Shadwell, a poet of unparalleled dreadfulness, as his successor. Mac Flecknoe is the poet-king of the realm of nonsense.
And he has no peer as a writer of prose, especially literary criticism, and as a translator.
Mac Flecknoe study guide contains a biography of John Dryden, literature essays, quiz questions, major themes, characters, and a full summary and analysis of the poem Mac Flecknoe.
Mac Flecknoe (full title: Mac Flecknoe; or, A satyr upon the True-Blew-Protestant Poet, T.S.) Dryden presents Shadwell as a dull poetaster, a corpulent man and a plagiarist. The first line of the poem creates the illusion of its being an epic poem about a historical hero. Mac Flecknoe is the finest short satirical poem in which Dryden has treated Thomas Sahdwell with humorous contempt. John Dryden's Mac Flecknoe is a mock-heroic poem believed to have been written in 1678 or 1679 and published in 1682.
It is a direct attack on Thomas Shadwell, another prominent poet of the time. Mac Flecknoe is a satiric poem of 217 lines, written in heroic couplets (pairs of rhyming lines of iambic pentameter). Shadwell is the worst writer in all the land, and thus, the perfect man for the job. Mac Flecknoe Summary. Mac Flecknoe is both a personal and literary satire. It opens with the lines: Bust of Mac Flecknoe … After William Shakespeare and Ben Jonson, he was the greatest playwright. More About This Poem Mac Flecknoe By John Dryden About this Poet After John Donne and John Milton, John Dryden was the greatest English poet of the 17th century. is a verse mock-heroic satire written by John Dryden. After many years as ruler, however, it comes time for him to step down.