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Pastoral, literature idealizing simple shepherd life, free of the corruption of the city. Typical forms are the verse elegy, prose romance, and drama. Originating with Theocritus in the 3rd century B.C., the form was used by many ancient authors, including Vergil in his Bucolics (eclogues). In England, after a Renaissance revival, it was used by William Shakespeare (in As You Like It), Sir Philip Sidney (in Arcadia), and John Milton (in Comus).

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