In this article, I focus on the opinions expressed by Renaissance theoreticians on Euripides’ diegetic prologues. I first examine the ancient sources which shaped early modern view of the dramatic prologue: Aristotle’s Poetics and Rhetoric, the scholia, the little treatise De comoedia written by Donatus and Evanthius, but also, indirectly, Horace’s Ars poetica. I then point out that Euripides’ diegetic prologues were perceived as incompatible with the rhetorical conception of poetry, based on the notion of verisimilitude, which was inspired by these ancient sources. Finally, I analyze two modern treatises expressing a negative opinion on Euripides’ prologues: Julius Caesar Scaliger’s Poetices Libri Septem and Lodovico Castelvetro’s Poetica di Aristotele vulgarizzata e sposta.
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