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Tragedy is an important form of drama. Aristotle’s Poetics is chiefly concerned with this form. Tragedy is considered to be the highest poetic form by him. In this epoch-making contribution, Aristotle has studied tragedy in detail. He has given its definition and analysed its various constituents as well as elements. He defines tragedy in the following way-

“Tragedy 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 emotions.” 

The definition is comprehensive enough. It includes stage presentation Which refers to costume and setting. In tragedy, it is action that is imitated. 

According to Aristotle, every tragedy has six constituents which determine its quality. They are plot, character, diction, thought, spectacle and song. The body of the tragedy is to be divided into several parts. They are prologue, episode, exode and choral song. Choral song is subdivided into parode and stasimon. In a tragedy, a tragic hero holds the best position. He will be a man of high rank. He will be neither a very good man nor a very bad man. He is a moderate sort of man. Aristotle’s concept of tragedy differs from that of the Elizabethan tragedies in English literature. 
Definition of tragedy


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