Burton Questions

ENGL 520

Dr. Fike



  1. Why does Burton write as “Democritus Junior”?  See especially 198-90.


  1. How does Burton develop a theater metaphor in “To the Reader”?  References to theater appear throughout.  How does this metaphor affect our reading of the text?


  1. How does Burton respond to the charge mentioned on 193 that the book is unnecessary?


  1. What causes scholars to be melancholy?


  1. How would you characterize Burton’s style?  He comments directly on style on 199-200, but look at specific sentences elsewhere for clues.  How does he put a sentence together?  Find one or two that best characterize his stylistic method.


  1. What is the relationship between Burton’s material on scholars’ melancholy and his extensive castigation of patrons?  Is the latter a digression from scholars’ melancholy?  Can you find a connection?


  1. What points can you make about “The Authors Abstract of Melancholy” on the handout?


  1. What is the relationship between the material on scholars and Subsection II on the handout (“Division of the Body, Humours, Spirits”)?


  1. Finally, what does Burton say about dreams in Subsection VII (“Of the Inward Senses”)?  If you have read Milton’s Paradise Lost, can you make any connections?