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Abstract

C.S. Lewis's "The Nameless Isle" is, if one ignores the first fifty-seven lines as an introduction, curiously shaped to meet the requirements of the Three Unities as the Renaissance and as Neo-classicism understood Aristotle's Poetics. Or at least two of them. The Unity of Place is obvious: all the action is set on the same isle. The Unity of Plot may be debatable since the dwarf has more to do with the resolution of the conflict than the hero does, but at least there is only one basic conflict. And, most impressive of the Three, all the action occurs on one day. This paper will trace, in particular, the single day of the action. The conclusion will consider the paradox of a verse romance tied to rules for drama, and will suggest Shakespeare's Tempest (not Mozart's Magic Flute) as a model for the form.

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