Overview of the works of William Shakespeare

Overview and summary: the comedy of mistakes

This comedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was probably written in 1591-92 and published in the infolio of 1623. Its source, direct or indirect, are the Menaechmi of Plautus, but probably the first scene of the third act is based on the host. Add to this a tragic thriller, probably suggested by the story of Apollonius, King of tyre, which Shakespeare had to use later for your Pericles, Prince of tyre. There are analogies, little notable, with the "tale of the gentleman", one of the Canterbury Tales of Geoffrey Chaucer (1340/45-1400), and the Arcadia of sir Philip Sidney (1554-1586). While Plautus was satisfied with a pair of twins, Shakespeare, with Baroque exuberance, adds a second, thus multiplying the possibilities of misunderstanding, but also increasing the incredible intrigue, which can only find justification in the success of any episode farce.
Having Syracuse sentenced to death some merchants of Ephesus who did not have money for the rescue, Ephesus adopts a similar measure in relation to when merchants. Egeon, old merchant of Syracuse, is sentenced to suffer this fate and explains to the Duke of Ephesus why is located in the city. He had had two twins of his wife Emilia, exactly identical and called both Antifolo. Two slaves, also twins and both called Dromio, born at the same time as the other two, were dedicated to your service.

Arrest of Antifolo of Ephesus
In a shipwreck, Egeon, with the twin born second, and with one of the Dromios, is separated from his wife with another son and another slave and not been heard about them. Come to maturity the second of twins, Antifolo of Syracuse, left along with his Dromio in search of his brother and his mother. It wasn't realized more than them, so Egeon, for five years, was missing in their search, and came to Ephesus.
The Duke, moved by the story of Egeon, gives you time until the evening to find the ransom money. The first born of the twins, Antifolo (Antifolo of Ephesus) with his Dromio (Dromio of Ephesus), saved from the shipwreck is located in Ephesus. Ephesus Antifolo lived there a lot time and married Adriana. And just arrived that same day Antifolo of Syracuse and Dromio of Syracuse. Each twin was a perfect similarity with the other, and there a number of amazing blunders.
Dromio of Ephesus should ask Antifolo of Ephesus to go to his house to eat, and instead requested to Antifolo of Syracuse. Adriana claims her rights of woman to Antifolo of Syracuse, while he experiences greater sympathy for his sister Luciana. Dromio of Syracuse, who has gone with him, is object of nasty Adriana MOP requests, as Dromio of Ephesus is later, together with his patron, that close you the entrance to your home, because it is believed that both are already inside.
The adventure is complicated with the gift of a chain, the intervention of a courtesan of the guests, a creditor, until Antifolo of Ephesus and his servant are attached like crazy; Antifolo of Syracuse and his Dromio, taken by the crazy assumptions escaped prisoners, suffer aggression and take refuge in a convent, whose Abbess is Emilia, also saved from the wreck, but separated by the cruel sailors of Corinth of the twins committed to it (and then into Antifolo and Dromio of Ephesus).
Meanwhile ends the term unless Egeon found the rescue money, so it is led to the torture, accompanied by the Duke. It is presented to the Antifolo Duke of Ephesus who, having broken ties with the teeth, has fled and calls for Justice against his wife, who has left out of his house and then made tying like crazy. Finally, the Abbess makes leaving the convent to the other couple, and jobs front, each of which is recognized as what it is. So Egeon is at the same time his wife and children, and the Duke lets you release.
They wanted to assume in Adriana, litigious and jealous woman, an indirect portrait of Anne Hathaway, wife of Shakespeare, and that picture of her husband's domestic life was removed from the experience of the poet. But apart from this curious assumption and a comic or sentimental trait (the Declaration of love of Antifolo of Syracuse to Luciana), the drama is one of the least attractive of Shakespeare. However, it contains so many donaires and grotesque situations, accepted the absurd premise, do not notice what else could be better done: in his time must have fun to the public as the current astracanadas.

Overview and summary: Titus Andronicus

This tragedy in five acts in verse is due in part to William Shakespeare, which must start it toward 1593-94; in 1595, 1600 and 1611 in-quarto , e infolio in the year 1623 was published. Edward Ravenscroft, in 1687, spoke of a theatrical tradition that this drama was due to an author external to the company, and Shakespeare "gave only a few master refinements to two of the main characters". The unknown author reveals the influence of Thomas Kyd (1558-1594) on the use of horror, complicit, and episodes of madness; of Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593) in the conception of the character of Arones reminiscent of Barabbas, the protagonist of the Jew of Malta; and George Peele (1558-1598) in the style.
It is difficult to recognize the touches to Shakespeare. W. W. Greg imagined an ingenious hypothesis, according to which the version corrected by Shakespeare, who authorized the inclusion of the drama in the list of his works is located in Palladis Tamia in Francis Meres (compiled before the September 1598), was destroyed in the fire of the Globe Theatre (1613), and was replaced by the primitive version, adding memory the second scene of Act III where there was Shakespearian traits.
Only distantly related to the plot of the drama issues, found although it is likely that your source is a misreading of Byzantine Chronicles relating to the Emperor Andronikos Komnenos (12th century) and the Queen of Georgia, Thamar, more or less contemporary yours.
The Roman general Titus Andronicus, after defeating the Goths, and capture the Queen Tamora together with his sons, Alarbus, Demetrius and Chiron, as well as the moro Aaron, lover of the Queen, returns to Rome while the imperial throne they are disputing Saturninus and his brother Bassianus. The Romans would like to choose to Titus Andronicus, but he persuades them that they appoint to Saturninus.

Anthony Hopkins in Titus (1999),
film based on Titus Andronicus
Bassianus to Lavinia, daughter of Andronikos, kidnaps Saturninus pretending to wife. Later Saturninus, falling in love of Tamora, she marries ron. Mutius, brother of Lavinia, attended her abduction and therefore his father Tito kills him. This is the beginning of the misfortunes that accumulate on its head, by the thirst for revenge of Tamora, who wants to punish the andronicos by the death of his son Alarbus, sacrificed on the tomb of the sons of Andronikos killed in the war, and the wickedness of the moro Aaron.
During a hunt, persuaded by the moro, Demetrius and Chiron kill Bassianus and then violate to Lavinia, and cut off the tongue and hands. The murder of Bassianus accused Quintus and Martius, son of Tito, and they are sentenced to death by the emperor. Aaron Titus plays a sinister joke: tells that if you cut off a hand and sends it to the Emperor, this granted grace to their children; but they returned to Titus the heads of their children together with their hand cut. Lucius, another son of Tito, is banished and goes out to recruit an army among the Goths, while Tito, thirsty for revenge, simulates go crazy.
Meanwhile Tamora gives birth to a dark child, Aaron is forced to lead away from Rome; Lucius captures it and Aaron, being made to promise that nothing will happen to your child, reveals all the evil hatched to the detriment of his family with sadistic pleasure. To the news of the arrival of the Gothic army of Lucius, Tamora with her two children goes to House of Tito, she believes, saying that it is revenge, and trying to persuade him to do so that Lucius held an interview with the emperor.
Tito, who discovers the deception, simulates pamper and retained in his house, as hostages, the sons of Tamora. He then kills them and their heads to prepare dishes offered at the banquet in honour of the emperor. In a final killing, Titus kills Lavinia, as Virginio killed her daughter, whose honor speaks been stained; Tamora come unknowingly gruesome dishes that Tito had offered him, Saturninus kills Titus, Lucius kills Saturninus, and finally just proclaiming him emperor. Aaron moro is sentenced to the stick.
All the horrors of Seneca and Ovid are accumulated and mixed in this sensational drama, in verses which often have swelling rhetoric of Tamerlane 's Marlowe; a touch of atmosphere, as the sinister zarzal where to throw the body of Bassianus, also recalls and repeats grim descriptions of Seneca. The drama seems cartoonish and inhumane, although it is typical of Elizabethan taste under the influence of Seneca. The characters are profiled rudely, and are pretty puerile; the dramatic situations are treated without delicacy.

Overview and summary: the life and death of King John

This historical drama in five acts and in verse was revised by Shakespeare from a pre-existing drama, the turbulent reign of King John, published in two parts in 1591. Review, Shakespeare marked with his superior genius dramatic and poetic, perhaps made in 1596-97 and was not printed until the infolio of 1623.
The drama, which does not follow all too accurately the historical events (strange is, for example, which not is cite the Magna Carta of 1215), is the main episodes in the reign of tyrannical and astute English Nero, especially the Elimination of his young nephew, Arthur; in one of the most strenuous scenes (the third in the third Act), the King get aroused by Humberto de Burgh to remove it in the Middle, because it crosses their path to power.
Humberto prepares to deprive Arthur of the eyes with hot irons, but the young man, in a pathetic scene (IV, 1) manages to touch it; However, later, Arthur is killed when he jumped the walls of the Castle. The pain of Constance, mother of Arthur, after the news of the imprisonment of his son is reflected with great efficiency, and the last moments of King John, in Swinstead Abbey, are painted so that they mitigate the odious of the protagonist.
But the most remarkable character of the drama is perhaps the bastard Felipe Faulconbridge, who summarizes the spirit of intrigue, adventure and greed for power that dominates the drama. His brother Robert tries to promote a process on the occasion of their heritage, and it makes you recognize precisely as a natural son of Richard the Lionheart.
The drama, although little remarkable from the literary point of view, has always enjoyed much success in the English stage, particularly because of the conflict between the English monarchy and the Papacy, and offers dramatic moments of effect and possibilities for putting in scene picturesque customs. His main critical interest lies in the possibility that offers us closely study the technique of Shakespeare, as it is the only drama that kept the wording previous to the Shakespearean.

Overview and summary: Richard III

This historical drama in five acts in prose and in verse was written by Shakespeare to 1593 and printed in in-cuarto in 1597, 1598, 1602, 1605, 1612, 1622, and I Folio in 1623. The historical facts are almost all taken from the Chronicles of Edward Hall or Halle (the union of the two noble and illustrious families of Lancaster and York, 1548) and of Raphael Holinshed, both based at the same time, in the Anglicae Historiae (1534) of Polidoro Virgili University of Urbino (1470-1555?), and the incomplete Story of the third Ricardo rey (1513), attributed to Thomas More.
In the center of the drama is the character of the usurper Richard, Duke of Gloucester, already appeared in Henry IV. Ricardo, hiding under benign appearances his diabolical plans, makes his brother Eduardo IV suspected of another brother, George, Duke of Clarence, and put him in prison; He then makes his henchmen to kill him and dropping to a VAT of malvasia. Ricardo Woo Anne, widow of Edward, Prince of Wales, as she follows the coffin of her late husband, episode that makes thinking about the famous location of the matron of Ephesus in the Satyricon of Petronius, because Ana, after having insulted Ricardo, yields to its claims of love.
Dead IV Eduardo, Ricardo, become protector of the Kingdom during the minority of age of Eduardo V, conspired to usurp the throne. He held the young King with his brother Ricardo in the Tower of London, and with the help of the Duke of Buckingham is proclaimed King. It does kill children of Eduardo IV, and removes middle pairs do not favor his in the Tower: Hastings, Rivers and Grey.

Lawrence Olivier in Richard III (1955)
To strengthen its position, the usurper repudiates Anna to marry his young niece, Elisabeth of York, daughter of Eduardo IV, and, in a scene similar to the conquest of Ana, persuades of Eduardo IV, Queen Elisabeth, widow to consent to the marriage. The Duke of Buckingham rebelling against the ingratitude of Ricardo, declaring by the Earl of Richmond, but is captured and sentenced to death. Finally the troops of the usurper fighting with the rebels in Bosworth (1485) and Ricardo, after a night haunted by the gruesome vision of their victims that will appear (a scene that does not believe Shakespeare), is killed in the battle. Richmond ascends to the throne with the name of Enrique VII.
Among the best scenes that figure in which the old Queen Margaret, widow of Enrique VI, curses other characters of the drama, guilty of the loss of her husband and of their own; their curses, as shown in the development of the drama, be met, so the figure of the old woman charged nearly an Erinia category. The style is mannered and rhetorical, with repetitions of early verses and other devices, such as invective and imprecations. From one end to the other the word "blood" runs it as a dominant motif. The character of Ricardo, although little subtle, it is very vigorous.
Psychology and style have seemed too elementary to be of Shakespeare, but work may very well be yours, if you think not in the Shakespeare's great tragedies of maturity, but in the first attempts, still influenced by his predecessors, especially by Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593). The episode of the death of the young children of Edward, narrated by a character who acts as the Messenger of classical tragedy, is famous, and suggested a remarkable picture of Paul Delaroche (1797-1856). The exclamation of Ricardo, seeking a new horse at the battle of Bosworth is also famous: "a horse, a horse, my Kingdom for a horse".

Overview and summary: Henry IV

This historical drama in verse and prose of William Shakespeare consists of two parts of five acts each; These parties were represented in 1597-98 and published in 1598 and 1600 respectively. The drama is based on the Chronicle of Holinshed and, for comic parts, Oldcastle, and Falstaff, in a pre-existing drama, the famous victories of Henry V.
The first part is the revolt of the Percy, assisted by Douglas, with the contest of Mortimer and Glendower, and his defeat by work of the King and the Prince of Wales in Shrewsbury (1403). The Prince of Wales is associated with Oldcastle (later replaced with the name of Falstaff) and fellow Pointz, Bardolp and Peto in its wild life. Pointz and Prince make others assaulted some travellers in Gadshill and stealing, and are in turn stolen by them. Falstaff, to justify the loss of loot, pretends to have been assaulted by 100 rogues; then you are gradually reducing the number of attackers, until the Prince explains how things have gone and then Falstaff confesses that it has not reacted because it could never kill the heir to the throne.
The serious part of the drama is formed by the contrast between the two young heroes, Prince Henry and Percy Hotspur. Enrique is adorned in the most seductive qualities: his craziest antics seem to only malicious traits in which explodes his active spirit, reluctantly forced leisure, until, just offered occasion, it displays all their gentlemanly ferocity. Hotspur is instead a mixture of rudeness, of pride and childish stubbornness; but his impetuous burning redeems its flaws, until he falls in the battle of Shrewsbury. Falstaff, true "miles gloriosus", finds his body in the field and brags about killing him.
The second part argument is the rebellion of the Archbishop Scroop, Mowbray and Hastings, while in the comic plot continues the exploits of Falstaff, with the Prince, of the blowhard Pistol Pointz, of the Lady Quickly, Doll Tearsheet (or Rompesabanas), as we translate in Spanish. Falstaff, called to suppress the rebellion, during the recruit falls on justices Shallow and Silence, is set in them, and steals thousand pounds to the first. (In Shallow caricature has wanted to warn an allusion to sir Thomas Lucy, with whom Shakespeare had to do for having stolen when young a deer on their land; according to others, this would be an allusion to the judge Gardiner).
The death of Enrique IV, Falstaff thinks that the ascension of the Prince to the throne will be their fortune: but the new King throws his presence and puts him in jail. While the heroic drama plot languishing after the death of Hotspur, the comic plot (gesta of Falstaff and his companions to the catastrophe and the repudiation, by Enrique V, of the companions of his juvenile misdeeds) kept alive their interest from one end to another, and is the masterpiece comic Shakespeare, rather than the farce of the merry wives of Windsor by the brio of the findings and rabelaisiano taste of the grotesque phrases.

Overview and summary: the merchant of Venice

This comedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare was written, according to some, in 1594 (allusion in Act IV, scene I, to the execution of the Jewish Rodrigo López of June 17, 1594, under the accusation of having tried to poison Queen Elizabeth); According to others, primarily by considerations of style, in the autumn of the 1596. Two dates could be reconciled by assuming a review by Shakespeare. It was published in fourth in 1600 and in folio in 1623.
The two main reasons for the argument, that of the loan made by a Jew a Christian by a pound of flesh, and a choice between seemingly different valuables, are old and recurrent. The first came to the knowledge of Shakespeare through Il Pecorone of Giovanni Fiorentino (written about 1318 and published in 1558), and for the detail of the abduction of the daughter of the usurer, through Zelauto (1580), story of Anthony Munday (1553-1603).
The second reason came to him through the version of Richard Robinson of the Gesta Romanorum (published apparently in 1517). The two reasons could be gathered in a pre-existing drama, The Hebrew (1578), which we know only indirectly (his argument was "the greed of those who prefer earthly goods and bloodthirsty soul of loan sharks"). Shakespeare probably recast this drama, keeping him any part, maybe the verses contained in the caskets.
Basanio, Venetian nobleman who has wasted his flow, asks the wealthy merchant Antonio, his friend, three thousand ducats to continue with dignity their engagement with the wealthy heiress Portia, who lives on the Mainland, in Belmonte. Antonio, who has used all of their money in overseas speculation, intends to be lending the money by Shylock, a Jewish usurer who had earlier insulted by usury exercised. Shylock agrees to lend the money under a condition: If the amount is not paid the fixed day, Shylock is entitled to take a pound of flesh from the body of Antonio.

Al Pacino portrayed Shylock
in the merchant of Venice (2004)
Porcia, by testamentary disposition of his father, he will marry the suitor who between three caskets (one gold, one silver, other lead) choose which contains the portrait of her. Everywhere become illustrious applicants; fail the Prince of Morocco and Aragon, which respectively open the chest of gold and silver; but Basanio, with sensible reflection, choose the good box, the lead, and he married Porcia, who loves him, and his friend Graciano with Portia, Nerisa maiden.
Meanwhile comes the news that Antonio ships have sunk, its debt has not been paid within the time limit agreed, and Shylock asks his pound of flesh. The matter is brought before the Doge. Portia disguises of lawyer and notary Nerisa and, without knowing their husbands, presented before the Court to defend Anthony.
After having tried in vain to obtain the forgiveness of the Jewish, offering three times the amount owed, Portia requests that you are granted the request of Hebrew, but warns you that you will lose your life if you spill a single drop of blood, since the obligation only entitles you to the meat. He argues after that Shylock should pay with life the crime of having made an attempt, being foreign, the life of a citizen of Venice.
Dux spares life to Shylock, but assigned half of their wealth to Antonio, and the other half to the State. Antonio renounces its part if Shylock becomes a Christian, and leaves its flow, when you die, Jesica (daughter of Shylock), who has fled, after taking money from the coffers of the father, to marry a Christian, Lawrence, and for this reason has been disinherited. Shylock accept; Porcia and Nerisa, that have not been recognised, ask for all pay rings Basanio and Graciano received their wives, and of which promised not to never separate. They give up after having resisted in vain. Returning to his house wives reproach them that action, but finally reveal them your product. Finally, it is known that three of Antonio ships have returned safely.
The drama is among the most famous and the most fortunate of Shakespeare, especially by the character of Shylock, drawn with robustness and accuracy and that has always moved to the big players to represent you. It has scenes that are among the most dramatic and brilliant than Shakespeare wrote: the contract scene (I, 3); one in which Shylock complains by the leak of his daughter with his money (III, 1); of the choice of the caskets by Basanio (III, 2); the scene before the Court of Justice (IV, 1); and the music to moonlight (V, 1). Finally, the skill with which Shakespeare has combined various and picturesque grounds and the conclusion of the drama, which celebrates the victory of the charity on the rigid Justice (why Shakespeare returns in measure for measure), have put its spell on the theatrical audience of all ages.
Some inconsistencies and prolijidades of the drama almost disappear on the true construction of the complex. Called attention to the atmosphere of the work, which has Italian character not only by the names of the characters and some precise allusion (mention of the Rialto, pontoon that connects Venice to the Mainland, and the exact distance between Belmonte, i.e., Montebello, and Padua), but also for more general qualities that have made to see a critic (A. Quiller-Couch) the two aspects of the Renaissance the world of the rich merchants and artistic refinement of manners, symbolized by Venice and Belmonte; an Italian atmosphere which does not in any way the sinister quality of Elizabethan dramas.
Although the central theme (the removal of the pound of flesh) is so cruel and tragic, Shakespeare cleverly distracts the viewers through scenes that take place in the village of Porcia; so, for example, after the climactic scene of the process, which will leave an impression strong and bitter, we can enjoy the sublime poetry of lunar night, with music and dialogue of the lovers.

Overview and summary: the taming of the Shrew

This comedy in five acts, in verse and prose, was written by William Shakespeare in 1593-1594, represented in 1594, and published in 1623 infolio. It is based on a slightly different title (a Taming of the Shrew) previous comedy. Shakespeare served as a collaborator, which turned to the source of the assumptions of Ludovico Arlosto and its English version Supposes (1566) of George Gascoigne secondary intrigue (do 1525? - 1577). Were Shakespeare prologue ("Induction") and a series of fragments: Act II, SC. 1, VV. 1-38, 115-326; Act III, SC. 2, VV. 1-129, 151-254; Act IV, escs. 1, 3, 5; Act V, SC. 2, VV. 1-181. He probably also collaborated to scene 2 of Act I, VV. 1-116. Altogether, about three-fifths of the drama, with all the scenes relating to Sly and Petruchio-Katharina plot.
The contributor wrote the Bianca cortejamiento scene; It is less vigorous than Shakespeare, although quite capable. No le has been identified with plausible approach: have been cited the names of Thomas Lodge (do 1558? - 1625), by Robert Greene (1558-1592), and George Chapman (1559-1634), but without sure Foundation. It precedes the drama a prologue in which a Coppersmith, Cristóbal Sly, is picked up drunk by a man returning from a hunt, before an Inn in the countryside.
Sly is taken to the Castle and make him treat him, joke when awake, as if he were a gentleman who, after long time, has regained the use of reason. Thus arises an extremely curious situation, which would have deserved a development different from that which received: Sly is forced to listen to a drama represented especially for him, by a company of scenesters; This drama is precisely the taming of the Shrew.
A few verses and towards the end of the first scene of the first Act, Sly and characters of the prologue disappear. Gremio and Hortensio Woo white, younger daughter of Baptist Minola, rich Lord of Padua; But having decided that white, his second daughter, marry only when husband found the eldest daughter, the intractable Catalina, the pretenders to the White hand gather to find a suitable man to marry it with Catalina.
Finally decide to be Petruchio (spelling English to give the Italian pronunciation of Petruccio), noble of Verona, clear-sighted and imperturbable. The Petruchio courts Catherine, Hortensio and Lucencio (son of Vicente, rich merchant from Pisa), joining the Group of white lovers, are introduced in his house disguised as teachers of the maiden. Among them is Tranio, servant of Lucencio, which is passed through the own Lucencio.
Petruccio makes the cut to Catalina, the taming of the title, pretending that finds both sweeter and friendly more mistreated; get then take it to the altar, and Catalina in the wedding, as in house of the father-in-law or his ceremony, subjected to humiliation and slights. It deprives her of food and sleep, pretending that foods are not worthy of it and that the bed is poorly made; It prevents you from that view elegantly, beating up the tailor and the Hatter and rejecting their exquisite ornaments; It forces him to accept and repeat its more absurd claims (e.g., that the Moon is the brightness of the Sun, that is in the morning when it is in the afternoon). Finally, return it to his father's house completely tame.

Petruchio (Richard Burton) ago shut up to
Catalina (Elizabeth Taylor) in the version
film of Franco Zeffirelli
White is conquered by Lucencio, while the false Lucencio, Tranio, beat other candidates before the father of white promised the richest arras and making them secure by a pedantic, they make which, under the pretext of an imaginary danger, Vicente clothes. When it comes the real Vincent occurs a dramatically grotesque series of misunderstandings, that finally are resolved happily. Hortensio is married with a widow, and, at the final banquet of couples (Petruccio-Catalina, white-Lucretius, Hortensio-widow) spouses are committed which of his wives will be the more manageable; Petruchio wins the bet. The work ends with a speech about the obedience due to husbands.
Torn vulgar motives of the Italian comedy of the 16th century and, through it, of the latino theater, the work adds fresh invention of Taming the Taming, in which medieval misogyny (Jean de Meung, Eustache Deschamps) is acute in psychological characterization. The comedy, which at no point acquires antidramatica verbosity of the Italian theatre of the 16th, still retains its freshness and is one of the most frequently represented works of Shakespeare.
Farce well accomplished, is, however, more than a farce, even if you have motives that had been able to bring it to more complex developments: as the Sly, collected in our time by Gerhard Hauptmann in Sehluck und Jau (1900) and Giovacehino Forzano in Sly. But the central theme, the submission of women to men will, which always entertain the public, eternal as the proverbs.

Review and summary of: Romeo and Juliet

Written according to some in 1591, this tragedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare, was published "in quarto" in 1597, in 1599, in 1609 and other inaccurate date, and in "in folio" in 1623. The relationships between the various texts have been thoroughly studied.
The theme of the "dead alive", to find their highest expression in this drama (according to the study, H. Hauvette, morte vivante), arrives to Shakespeare through Italian, especially through the work of Matteo Bandello (1485-1561), reported abroad by Pierre Boisteau. The version of the latter was in turn translated into English in the Pleasure palace of William Painter, and freely interpreted by Arthur Brooke in the poem the tragic story of Romeo and Juliet, 1562, in which Shakespeare was inspired.
An attempt to establish a relationship between the drama of Shakespeare and other derivatives of the same source, the Lope de Vega (Castelvines and Wildcats) and Adriana (1578) of Luigi Groto, which contains phrases and images that are also in the drama of Shakespeare, but which are only clichés of the petrarquismo; In addition, both dramas are completely different in the mode of treating the argument and in the study of the characters.
The Montecchi (Montagues) and the Cappelletti (Capulets), the two main families of Verona, are enemy. Romeo, son of the old Montecchi, attends a party at House of the Capulets masked and, if before I believed in love with Rosalina, now finds that his true passion is Juliet. After the party, young people are swollen in mutual love. And, while under the window of Juliet, Romeo hears her confess her love for him at night, and obtained his consent to a secret marriage.
With the help of Friar Laurence were married the next day. Mercutio, Romeo's friend, just Tebaldo, great-grandson of Lady Capuleto, furious at having discovered the presence of Romeo at the party; Mercury and Tebaldo squabbling. Romeo intervenes, and the challenge of Tebaldo responds with words that they are hiding the new link of kinship, and refuses to fight. Mercutio is outraged by such submission and draws the sword. Romeo tries in vain to separate the contenders, getting only give occasion to Tebaldo wound of death to Mercutio. Then Romeo is dragged to fight and kill to Tebaldo.
He is condemned to exile, and the next day, after spending the night with Juliet, leave Verona to Mantua, being called by friar Laurence, who understands that that is the right time to make public his marriage. Juliet, forced by his father to marry count Paris and advised to do so by his mother, who had earlier favoured union with Romeo, is convinced by fray Lorenzo from that consent, but drinking the eve of the wedding a narcotic that will make her appear dead for forty hours. The same Friar will deal with inform Romeo, which will remove it from the grave to his awakening and lead it to Mantua.

Romeo and Juliet (1968), by Franco Zeffirelli
Julieta puts into practice the Council. But the message does not reach Romeo because the monk who should deliver it is detained on suspicion of infection; on the other hand get the news of the death of Juliet. Buy a powerful poison from an apothecary and goes to the Tomb to see his beloved for the last time; at the entrance it is Paris and kills him in a duel. Then, Romeo, after having kissed Juliet last drinks the poison. Juliet comes to and finds Romeo dead, with the Cup still in the hand. He realizes what happened and being stabbed. This tragic death is narrated by the Friar (who came too late to prevent this) and the page of the count of Paris. Enemy, touched by the catastrophe caused by its enmity, the heads of the two families are reconciled.
He has been warned many times by critics that this is not a tragedy in the sense that it will be the great tragedies of Shakespeare, since not it springs from the character, but that is due to a fortuitous combination of external circumstances, to such an extent that it could alter the outcome of the drama in the 18th century making it happy. However, the conception of Shakespeare is tragic for the same images with that opera, in them it shows his vision of the story of two lovers in its rapid and fatal beauty, almost like a lightning, also suddenly off and on soon.
This conception is projected onto an artificial "Italianized" Fund, which is the same as the early dramas of Shakespeare (the two gentlemen of Verona, lost love works). All Shakespearean Theatre, Romeo and Juliet is the most rich in metaphors work; in the words of Romeo, even more than in the sonnets of Shakespeare, we find the influence of conventional concepts of the precursors of the Baroque. But artificiality, instead of being just a pleasant decoration, as in the dramas of John Lyly and Robert Greene, gives a more pathetic accent to human history that surrounds, and the anguish and death are not less real and poignant occur in a fussy Garden Italian and be surrounded by sweetness.
Great is the variety of the notes played in this drama, which summarizes the initial period and anticipate on the maturity of Shakespeare: contrived customs, strange and runaway acuity, purity of heart, burning fantasy, apotheosis of love and his funeral pomp. By this mixture of elements, the drama fascinated the romantics, not only because of their higher notes (it will inspire John Keats, whose Eve of Santa Inés is a variation on a theme of this drama), but also by certain macabre motives, as the scene of the Pantheon (which may have influenced on some fantastic stories of Edgar Allan Poe) and the Parliament of Juliet in the first scene of Act IV ("tell me that me where conceals nest the") tiller... "(, v. 79 y ss.), which seems to have suggested many situations of"black novels"from the end of the 18th century."
The drama is perhaps among the Shakespeare, the most widespread and popular, and imitations and derivations in all languages, are numerous although the value of these is often very low.

Overview and summary: a Midsummer night's dream

This comedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was written around 1595 and represented around the same time; in quarto in 1600 and 1619, and Folio was published the year 1623. Shakespeare seems to have drunk in the most disparate sources for this drama: in the discovery of witchcraft, Reginald Scot (do 1538? - 1599) could have found news about Robin Goodfellow, while the story of the transformation in ass goes back to the Golden ass of Apuleius, but you could take it from Chaucer or Plutarch.
Hermia, in love with Lisandro, refuses to marry Demetrius, thus contravening the desire of Aegean, his father. Demetrius, on the other hand, is loved by a friend of Hermia, Elena, who has left to marry Hermia. According to the Athenian law, Duke Theseus gives Hermia four days of time to obey the will of the father, after which there will be death.
Hermia and Lisandro they agree to abandon Athens secretly and marry where the law can't reach them. They plan to be in a forest a few miles from the city. Hermia reveals plan to Elena, who informs Demetrius. Demetrio continues to Hermia to forest and Elena to Demetrio; so that the four are in the woods that night.
Oberon and Titania, King and Queen of the fairies, who live in the forest, have fought because of a page. Oberon asks hobgoblin Puck, symbol of the fickleness of love, that ensure you some magical flower whose juice, poured into the eyes of Titania while you sleep, will do that he is fall in love with the first being to those who see when you wake up. Oberon hears in the forest to Demetrio blame Elena you are following him, and eager to reconcile them, to sequences to Puck who pour some of that loving filter in the eyes of Demetrius when Elena is next to him.
Puck, taking to Lisandro by Demetrius, gives the filter, and as Elena is the first person to Lisandro sees upon awakening, direct you words of love; but you cannot but irritate her because she thinks that Lisandro mocks her. Oberon, discovered the error of Puck, pour juice in Demetrius's eyes, so that now are two that Woo Elena. The two women fight as the men prepare to challenge for Elena.
Meanwhile, Oberon has put filter on the eyelids of Titania, who, upon waking, just the Weaver Bottom with a donkey instead of their own head at his side: indeed, Bottom, with a company of Athenian craftsmen, lies in the Woods rehearsing a drama that has to represent to celebrate the marriage of the Duke, and Puck has put the head of an ass. Titania falls for him when she sees him, and requiebra him for his beauty. Oberon, who pities to Titania, surprise them and after recovering the kidnapped page, rubs the eyes of his wife with an herb that frees her from the spell.
Puck, by order of Oberon, surrounds the human lovers and brings together them: while they sleep some other, squeezes in his eyes grass that rolled back the charm, so waking up again before love. Theseus and Aegean; arise the fugitives are forgiven and the couples are married. The drama ends with a scene of Pyramus and Thisbe recited in a grotesque way by Bottom and his companions for the wedding of Theseus and Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons.
Various threads of the drama (the wedding of Theseus and Hippolyta, the dispute between Oberon and Titania, the escape of the four lovers, the representation of craftsmen) are linked as more agile in a sumptuous tapestry of lively colors on a background of magical forest. The classical world and the world of fairies merge as a "triumph" of the late Renaissance: in the Oberon pairs – Titania is a reflection of the old dispute between Jupiter and Juno, and those two beings seem to participate in the serene beauty of the gods of Greece, while Puck belongs to the dark and mythical world of Nordic superstition.
The delightful lightness of the world of the Elves concerts with the human vicissitude; up to the movements and passions of lovers seem to unfold according to arabesques of dream, thrive in absurd difficulties and dissipate in charm as an abstruse and elegant dance ruled by the whims of love. A cheerful and absurd metamorphosis takes over from humble artisans, which are not marginal fantoches in the box, they are wrapped in a same magical atmosphere; and Bottom, with the head of an ass, and the grotesque representation of "Pyramus and Thisbe", do not seem as related with the classical world of Luciano and Ovid as with the unique inventions of that painter's absurd ghosts called the Hieronymus Bosch. The fantastic world of the allegories of the Renaissance and the loving world of chivalrous novels with their sources that light up or ice love, here are its most perfect and poetic expression.

Overview and summary: the merry wives of Windsor

This comedy in five acts in prose, with some parts in verse, of William Shakespeare, was written probably to 1598, published in editions "in quarto" in 1602, 1619 and 1630, and in the Edition "Folio" in 1623. The 1602 text is incomplete.
According to a tradition, the work was written in fifteen days at the request of Queen Elizabeth, who wished to see onstage to Falstaff in love. However, it seems not be a mere improvisation, by Shakespeare used a comedy already existing in her company's Repertory. It's The comedy the jealous, represented in 1593 and based on an Italian narration (the second from the first book of the Il Pecorone), where the reason for the lover hidden in a piece of furniture, common in the Italian novel, takes the form of man "hidden under a pile of dirty laundry".
In several of his characters have wanted to see caricatures of really existing persons. Thus, portraits of judge Shallow and stupid Abraham Slender nephew might have by model to Sir Thomas Luey de Charlecote, near Stratford, who, it is believed, would have pursued to Shakespeare when he was young by have hunted stealthily on their lands, whose truthfulness is questionable.
Comedy is the link for two reasons: the Falstaff who woos two rich bourgeois of Windsor who mock him, and Anne Page, who their parents want to get married. Falstaff, being lacking of money, decides to woo the women of Ford and Page, bourgeois of Windsor, since they govern the flow of their husbands.
Falstaff sends identical gallant letters to two wives, which decide to take revenge on him. On the other hand, Nym and Pistol, the accomplices of Falstaff, despechados because is has been removed, please advise on the husbands. Page is not moving, and Ford is happy with the possibility of catching "red-handed" his wife.
Falstaff is first visited by the Lady Quickly, servant of doctor Cajus, responsible for playing the role of party wall of two ladies; This assures Falstaff that both women do not want to, but please. He then receives a visit from Ford disguised with the clothes of Brook, which is pretending to be crazy love by Mrs. Ford and Falstaff promises a splendid reward if it helps you conquer it. Falstaff reveals that he has an appointment with Mrs. Ford and promises then assign the site to Brook. During the mock quotation Ford is presented with a mob of friends to witness the adultery, and Falstaff to hide him quickly and running in a large basket of dirty clothes, and then is thrown with all the clothes into the silt of the river.
In a second appointment Falstaff is dressed as a fat woman, and as such strongly beaten by Ford. Also the jealous husband is mocked twice, but finally they discovered the plot and give a last quoted Falstaff in the forest of Windsor, where assault him and pinch bundled claims and Pixies, and at last he is unmasked by Ford and Page.
The secondary plot represents the courtship of Anne, daughter of Page, by three suitors, the doctor Calus, French physician; Slender (a name which could be translated by "Emaciated" or "Enclenque"), bobo nephew of the Shallow judge (whose equivalent would be "Light"); and Fenton, a young extravagant, loved by Anne. Madonna Quickly (as they say Lady "quickly and running"), make mediator between the three, and it encourages them alike. Sir Hugh Evans, Welsh priest, it stands in favor of Slender, and is challenged by Caius, but hostilities are reduced that mistreat the English language a Welsh and French.
The last appointment given to Falstaff in the forest, Page, favoring Slender, has this kidnap his daughter, which will wear white, while the Lady Page, which protects the doctor, has his daughter view of green, and be kidnapped by the. But when the time comes the two suitors are hands a disguised as a boy, while the real Anne has fled with Fenton, with whom he will marry.
Some have wanted to see in this comedy a kind of "fabliau" staged with all the features of that somewhat Shyamalan genre: realistic portraits, clumsy ways, lack of respect for marriage, pleasure bourgeois in mistreating a womanizer patrician... Perhaps because these elements more continental than English, and especially by the sensual theme underpinning and the caricature of the Cuckold, this comedy did not much predicament between the English critics of the 19th; While in our scenes, developing bright themes of the Italian novel, it is fun and easy care. Skillful play, however suffers its composition hasty, often compensated with an extraordinary brilliance.

Overview and summary: is well that ends well

This comedy in five acts in verse and prose, translated also as successful there is no bad principle, was probably written to 1602-1603. According to others, which take into account the inequalities of the text, he had a first draft during the youth of Shakespeare, in the period 1590-1594 and, ten years later, it was remade by the same author with the help of a collaborator. It was published in the 1623 infolio.
There is no news that has been performed before the month of March 1714, during a tour to the fervor of the comedies of Shakespeare, or that had fortune on the scene. The plot is taken from the ninth cartoon of the third day of the Decameron of Giovanni Boccaccio, translated in the pleasure palace of William Painter (I. 38). It is the well known story of Giletta of Narbonne cures the King of France of a fistula which asks husband to Beltrán de el Rosellón.
Beltran, young count of Roussillon, is called the Court of the King of France following the death of his father, and leaves in the Castle inherited his mother and Elena, daughter of the famous physician Gerardo de Narbonne, who has been educated at the expense of the old count. The King of France (Carlos V, name not cited in the drama of Shakespeare) is sick with incurable fistula. Elena, who is in love with Beltran and loves you, conceived the daring plan of moving to Paris and try to cure the King by means of a recipe that his father left him. The mother of Beltran, who has discovered Elena's love for his son, secunda your project.
The healing goes well and Elena get as a reward from the King to choose a husband among the gentlemen of the Court; So let be your choice in Beltran, which, though irritated by having to marry a woman of lower rank, is hurry to obey the order of the King. But, instigated in part by the blowhard Parolles, Beltran is ready immediately to the service of the Duke of Florence in the war against Siena, and writes to Elena think not to consider him her husband while he failed to obtain the ring that carries on his finger, and he has no intention of ever RID, and until you have a child of the , but it has no intention of sharing his bed.
Elena, dressed in Pilgrim goes to Florence, and finds that Beltran is in love with Diana, daughter of the host of pilgrims. Diana, however, refuses their proposals. Elena is given to know the girl and her mother as the wife of Beltran, and obtains, promising to target a dowry, that she pretend to accept an agreement of the lover to give him the ring; then, when you have to verify the appointment, Elena will replace Diana.
Shortly thereafter, spread the false news of the death of Elena, and having finished the campaign that has distinguished itself extraordinarily, Beltran returned to Roussillon. Meanwhile his friend Parolles has been unmasked as a heinous and cowardly traitor. In the castle of Roussillon is the King, seeing in Beltran toe ring that he himself had given Elena, and that she not was spreading rather than to send it on demand for assistance in case of need, you suspect that Beltran has made to disappear to his wife. Diana is presented with an appeal, accusing Beltran of having seduced and saying that he has been forced to give the ring to Beltran. The enigma is finally resolved with the appearance of Elena, who, showing Beltran another ring which he had believed to give to Diana, and having been pregnant from it, it is finally received as a wife of her husband repented and forgiven by the King.
We cannot say that well-plotted tale of Boccaccio out improved in the Shakespearean drama; perhaps to provide a glossy paper to a comic actor, Shakespeare has introduced the episodes relating to Parolles, who probably put afloat the drama with prejudice to the main plot. But those episodes are an essential part of the atmosphere of the drama, the same way as the language of brothel and the poisonous sniping by Lucio are inseparable from measure for measure, bitter comedy that has close affinity with is well that ends well.
Elena has a little bit of Isabel (especially in his speeches to persuade the King of the effectiveness of the cure) and a bit of Mariana in measure for measure. The outcome in the last act comes through fairly similar stages in both dramas and the similarity of style, of dialogue, of general pessimistic colorful, invite you to sustain that it is well that ends well is a twin of measure for measure, but not so vital. Of the two main characters, Elena may seem ambiguous, and hateful Beltran; most noble are the King and the Countess, but secondary; the jester Lavache is loose, and only Parolles can move us to laughter, but as in a bitter farce, without human sympathy which arouses in us a bluffer as Falstaff.
But mostly he doesn't us drama how Elena, abhorred by Beltran, achieved at last made love: conclusion, the latter, which should be checked if really all "must end well". Psychological justification deficiency is supplemented by the prodigious case, by skillful record with which Elena arrives to meet the two conditions placed by Beltran, although this record operates so too mechanical to produce convictions. Also seen in what Beltran be a desirable husband, unless by their strong social position.

Overview and summary: Julius Caesar

This tragedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare was probably written in 1599, released the same year and published "in folio" in 1623. Its sources are the lives of gross, César Antonio of the parallel lives of Plutarch, in the English translation of sir Thomas North (1579), often followed by Shakespeare literally. Some passages have been compared with the Pharsalia of Lucan, with the Epistles of Cicero, with the natural history of Pliny, with civil wars with the Roman history of Dión Casio, with the lives of the Twelve Caesars of Suetonius, Appiano and El César de Pescetti, but we cannot say what Shakespeare has taken directly from these sources , since other previous English dramas on the same subject have been lost.
The ambitions of Julio César provoke a conspiracy between the proponents of Roman liberty, especially Casio and Casca, who persuade gross. Gross hates Caesar's ambitions, but not to same Caesar, so all his performance is accompanied by disgust for the Act which is to be. Gross defends the insistence of his wife Porcia, who wants to find out his secret, while the wife of Caesar, Calpurnia, advised by a dream, pleads with Caesar to not go to the Capitol on the IDEs of March. But one of the conspirators, Decio, convinces him.
The sophist Artemidorus fails in its effort to prevent him, and Caesar is assassinated. Entreated make shout for the city: "freedom and independence!", believing the people with them, but Antonio, with a skillful eulogy over the body of Caesar, raised to the village, while forced rough speech leaves cold mass. The insurrection forces to flee to the conspirators; forms the Government of the triumvirs, Antonio, Octavian and Lepidus, mobilized against the army of Brutus and Cassius.

Against the corpse of Caesar, Mark Antony
(Marlon Brando) incites the people to rebellion, in
the excellent film by Joseph L. Mankiewicz (1953)
The eve of the meeting the two friends have an altercation, but later reconciled and gross Casio gives the news of the death of Portia. This so-called "handgun dialogue" ("half-sword parley") was one of the most admired scenes of Shakespeare Theatre by his contemporaries. The spectrum of Caesar appears to Brutus. On the plains of Philippi, Brutus beat Octavio forces, while Casio is beaten by Antonio. Believing that also gross has been defeated, Casio commits suicide; the faithful Titinio follows his lead. In the second battle, Brutus, discouraged by the death of Casio, it is defeated, and is also killed.
The problem of the interpretation of this drama, that prelude the period of the great tragedies of Shakespeare, is complicated by the confusion that exists between the dramatic function of the central scene (the death of Caesar) and the real tragic goal. Most of the critics, based on the fact that the death of César happens in a premature State of action, deny that this is the protagonist of the tragedy and argue that this quality is rough. Moreover, they recognize that the spirit of César dominates all the tragedy, even after his death, and his name is on the lips of Casio and gross when they commit suicide.
At first sight it may seem that the true protagonist is gross, so much more so that, at the end of the drama, this is remembered by Antonio with words that, by analogy, may apply to the same Shakespeare: "this was the noblest among all the Romans... His life was gentle; "and the elements so mixed in him, that nature might stand up and yell to the whole world: this was a man". But gross, in the first Act, occupies a secondary position regarding Casio; in the third, his personality is supported by the Antonio; and only in acts IV and V plays a dramatic role of foreground.
To solve the problem, some have thought that the real protagonist is the idea incarnated by Cesar, the caesarism, the authoritarian ideal, the antagonist would be the Republican idea represented by advocates of the freedom of the ancient Rome. For others, in the end, all the disquisitions on the real protagonists are vain, considering how the destinies of Caesar and Brutus, in such a way that Brutus (Act IV, scene 3) are inextricably linked appears to him your own destiny, your demon with the face of Caesar.
The tragedy, with a compelling rhythm, is governed by a fierce Nemesis: the first part culminates in the death of Caesar, the second in the suicide of the matadors. In the middle there is a pause, the meeting of the triumvirs that sections of the tragic tumult, look it coolly, by calculating its practical advantages. The comic element is almost absent from this Roman drama, as well as Coriolanus; If there are laughter, is a bitter laugh over the fate of the poet Cinna, killed by the ingenuity and the simplicity of the crowd, easily conquered by the brazen rhetorical resources of the prayer of Antonio.

Overview and summary: Hamlet

Written and released around 1600-1601, this tragedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare has come down to us in various newsrooms: the "room" of 1603, or first "quarter"; the "room" of 1604, or second "room"; the "infolio" of 1623. The second "room" would represent the original text of the drama, which would derived other texts to a greater or lesser extent.
The story of Hamlet was told by Saxo Grammaticus in Gesta of the Danes (books III and IV, chaps. 86-106), from the beginning of the 13th century. Reached Shakespeare through the Histoires Tragiques of f. de Belleforest and a lost drama, which probably appeared on the scene in 1587 or 1589. There are some important differences between the narration of Belleforest and Shakespearean drama: in the story of French, Hamlet knows from the beginning how his father, died so his feigned madness has a wonderful justification; on the other hand, he does not die in the fulfillment of his revenge and is able to act forcefully at the right time.
Imagine that some of the new elements were introduced by the preshakesperiana tragedy, designated by critics, with the German prefix Ur-Hamlet, or "primitive Hamlet": thus the death of the protagonist, the spectrum of the father, the scene of the drama within the drama and the final duel with Laertes, elements that make think of Thomas Kyd (1558-1594) as author. Probably in the preshakesperiana tragedy Hamlet was an aggressive Avenger, but to readjust to the scene the ancient tragedy, Shakespeare gave the protagonist the melancholic character, which became fashionable in the early 17TH century, to justify the delay of vengeance; Thus the center of the drama moved from the intrigues of Claudio reactions in the spirit of the "melancholy" and pessimistic Hamlet.
In Shakespeare's tragedy, the King of Denmark has been murdered by his brother Claudio, who has usurped the throne and was married, without respecting the customs, with the widow of the dead, Gertrude. The spectrum of the father appears to Hamlet in the wall of the castle of Elsinore, concerns the circumstances of the crime and calls for revenge. Hamlet promises to obey, but his melancholic nature makes him irresolute and forces him to defer action; Meanwhile it pretends crazy to avoid the suspicion that threatens the life of the King. It is believed that it has troubled his mind the love of Ophelia, daughter of Chamberlain polonium, which, having courted previously, is now with cruelty.

Lawrence Olivier in Hamlet (1948)
Hamlet checks the account of the spectrum, making represent a drama (the murder of Gonzago), which reproduces the circumstances of the offence, before the King and the King does not know to dominate his agitation. In a scene in which cries out against his mother, Hamlet is that the King is listening behind a curtain and draws the sword, but instead kills Polonius. The King, decided to make disappear to Hamlet, sent to England with Rosencrantz and Guildenstern, but pirates capturing Hamlet, and returned to Denmark.
On arrival find that Ophelia, crazy pain, has drowned. The brother of the girl, Laertes, has returned to avenge the death of his father Polonius. The King, apparently, wants to appease them and leads to Hamlet and laertes to compete, not in a duel, but in a game of arms which seal the forgiveness; but laertes give a sword-tipped and poisoned. Hamlet is pierced, but before she died fatally wounds Laertes and kill the King, while Gertrude drinks the poisoned cup to the son. The drama concludes with the arrival of the pure Fortinbras, Prince of Norway, who becomes ruler of the Kingdom.
The famous scenes, include that of the monologue from Hamlet (Act III, SC. 1) which begins with the famous verse "be or not to be, here is the problem" ("To be or not to be: that is the question"), or that of the cemetery, where Hamlet does Yorick, the King jester head considerations. The trial of Hamlet, in the majority of critics, is reduced to a judgment on the character of the protagonist, expressly designed as living a life of their own and external to the drama. In this point of view the critics have been followed by authors who sacrifice the whole drama, cutting without concern, the character of Hamlet to represent it, scenes from that point of view considered secondary.
But the trial of Hamlet is extremely difficult due to a series of problems that are not idle ramblings: would, for example, Claudio not interrupted the drama of Gonzago that reproduces the circumstances of his offence, single view of the pantomime that precedes the recitation of the actors? Why Hamlet used persistently with Ofelia obscene and insulting language? To such questions, critics who are placed in a strictly historical point of view counter claiming frequent inconsistencies of the dramas of the era: Granville-Barker arrives to say that "intrigue, as such intrigue, is developed with scandalous incompetence". Other critics argue that much of the development has been lost and that the real problem of Hamlet would be to try to rebuild it.

Only Kenneth Branagh has led to film the entire work
in Hamlet (1996), a film of four hours of duration
Thus, while psychological critics explain the attitude of Hamlet to Ophelia as a result of the sexual caused nausea in the Prince by maternal behavior, historical critics related to the intervention of Ophelia in the original drama, where, as in the story of Belleforest, would only be an instrument of Hamlet's uncle to seduce the Prince. And language that Hamlet uses with it is precisely that would be taken to that instrument, although Ophelia is not such a thing in the drama of Shakespeare. Hamlet could have imagined it so have heard the words of Polonius to the King in the second scene of the second Act, verse 162 and GIS: "At such a time I'll loose my daughter to him" ("then chastise you my daughter"); where "loose" not only implies that polonium, which hitherto has forbidden Ophelia that communicates with Hamlet, will leave it free, but it contains an allusion to the municipality of horses and cattle (to which the isabelists used the verb).
Certain that Hamlet, later (V. 174), calls Polonius "fishmonger" (fishmonger), an epithet that was given to the ruffians, and compares her daughter with a "flesh carrion" (carrion, but also, in slang Elizabethan, prostitute). There is, therefore, to imagine, to explain the attitude of Hamlet to Ophelia, which ominously interpreted his conduct in the light of the words of Polonius, surprised by it; It follows, then, as says Dover Wilson, what to put in that scene the annotation "enter Hamlet".
Central note of tragedy is certainly that of the phrase "The native hue of resolution is sicklied or ' er with the pale cast of thought" ("the natural color of the resolution becomes ill with the pale tint of thought", III, 1, 85). Contrast with Hamlet, which embodies that attitude which has been defined as a disease of the will, Fortinbras and Laertes, men of action. The alternatives of frenzy and seeming apathy of the central character indicate the rhythm of all the tragedy, rhythm both febrile, with his paroxysms and their suffering, which gives the drama its fascination indistinct, so difficult to analyze, but always felt by the audience, even in the reductions and deformations suffered by the aforementioned scenes.

Overview and summary: Othello, the moor of Venice

Written to 1604 and probably represented the same year, this tragedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare published quarter in 1622, Folio in 1623 and again in fourth in 1630 and 1655. The text of the first edition in room presents significant differences with the 1623, to the end that it was justified the hypothesis that the editors used different manuscripts; for this reason the text is set taking into account both editions.
The source of this work is the seventh novel in the third decade of the Hecatomitos of Giovan Battista Giraldi Cintio, with the difference that the Moor captain and Ensign lack name in Giraldi. Has been issued a hypothesis identifying the moor with the patrician Cristoforo Moro, who was Lieutenant in Cyprus, in 1508, and who lost his wife in the return trip to Venice; other authors believe that it is "Captain Moor" (actually a South Italian) Francesco da Sessa, who was sentenced to the gallows by the rectors of Cyprus, 1544 late or early next year, in Venice, for an unspecified crime. It is not known with certainty whether Shakespeare used the original Italian or French translation of Gabriel Chappuys, published in Paris in 1584.
The Moor Othello, general in the service of Venice, has won the love of Desdemona, daughter of the Venetian Senator Brabantio, telling their deeds and the dangers that happened; and then he has married her. Why Brabantio accuses him to Dux have enchanted and kidnapped his daughter. But Othello explains how loyally conquered the heart of Desdemona, and this confirms his story.
Meanwhile comes the news that an attack of the Turks against Cyprus is imminent, and calls the collaboration of Othello to reject them. Brabantio, reluctantly, gives his daughter to the moro, which immediately moved with her to Cyprus. Ensign Yago, who has been replaced in the role of Lieutenant by Casio, feel a deep hatred of Othello; Yago has heard rumors that the moro has lain with Emilia, his wife and Maid of Desdemona.
Initially, Yago manages to discredit to Casio in Othello, making Casio is drunk and troubled the public peace. It helps you Rodrigo, who loves, without being reciprocated, to Desdemona. Casio, deprived of his degree, is induced by Yago so pray to Desdemona that intercede on behalf his; Yago simultaneously gives rise to in the mood of Othello the suspicion that his wife cheating on him with the unfortunate Lieutenant.

Orson Welles in his Othello (1952)
The intercession of Desdemona for Casio seems to confirm their suspicions and creates in the moro furious jealousy. Yago manages to make a handkerchief that Othello had given Desdemona as a precious garment (tissue collected by Emilia when his wife had lost it) is found in possession of a Casio. Othello, blinded by jealousy, suffocates Desdemona on his deathbed.
Later, Casio, which Rodrigo had to kill at the instigation of Yago, is found injured. But Rodrigo, wounded by Yago to avoid that their plan is discovered, are letters that prove the guilt of Yago and the innocence of Casio. Othello, struck down by the discovery of having been killed by his innocent wife, and after having found, at the time of the collapse of their world, alertness, stoically killed to punish himself.
This tragedy, whose dominant theme are jealousy, is so skillfully constructed and thereby snatching the attention that, unless a cold and thorough examination, do not notice the improbability of many elements, the contradictions in the psychology of the various characters and an incurable inconsistency in the duration of the action.
Critics have endeavoured to solve the various difficulties presenting drama. The most serious of them is the duration of the action: since the landing of Desdemona and Othello in Cyprus until the final catastrophe only takes thirty-six hours; on the other hand, many circumstances require that the action has a longer development and lasts at least some weeks.
Attempted to reconcile this apparent inconsistency in various ways, for example, assuming that the accusation of Yago against Desdemona refers to a time before arriving in Cyprus, since during the stay in Cyprus there it would have been materially time for those alleged love affairs. But this explanation would oppose what Yago says Desdemona; Thus, in the third Act (3,230 et seq.) Desdemona's infidelity is attributed to a period subsequent to the passion that she felt towards the Moor that had lasted until shortly before. Therefore, according to the words of Yago, infidelity would have taken place out once.
Contradictions are also appreciated in the character of Othello. On the other hand, Desdemona seems too obtuse to not realize that Othello is jealous, when Casio recommends that at the least opportune moment. Later, when already has realized of jealousy that her husband, feels it is not discover the reason and immediately have an explanation with it. Also the other characters may seem naive for be fooled by Yago.
But the confusions and contradictions in the psychology of the characters, as well as solutions of continuity between its characters and the way you have to act, were in the order of the day in the theatre elisabetiano, which boasted perspective effects inevitably involving deformations which could not be seen in the representation. And precisely in this aspect this drama of Shakespeare is perhaps one of the most lucid and classics of the author, which explains its success on the continent. Zaira, of Voltaire, in which the character Orosmane is modeled of Othello, is the first French adaptation of the Shakespearean play.
Southern tragedy by the passion that is your argument (unless this is why pretend, as did Schlegel, see an attempt to study cultural and environmental, that Othello would be the tragedy of badly assimilated barbarian in the drama), which frequently has been represented in Italy, giving rise to famous interpretations. On the other hand, to English and Puritan mindset, the topic has always seemed rather repellent, and for this reason, in recent times, the public remained with morbid attention interpretation that Paul Robeson black character. It is a tragedy that is pressing and that gives no respite; a fact of black Chronicle surrounding Shakespeare with the richness of the verbal and conceptual subtlety of a 16th century.

Overview and summary: King Lear

Written in 1605-1606 and represented in 1606, this tragedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was published in 1608 (first to fourth with the title the true Chronicle of the life and death of King Lear and his three daughters), in 1619 (second quarter), in 1623 (in folio) and 1655 (third quarter).
The story of Lear and his daughters, one of the issues that have most troubled the scholars of folk traditions, is in Geoffrey of Monmouth (Historia Regum Britanniae, work composed to 1140), Holinshed (Chronicle), and a contribution of John Higgins (1574) to the mirror for magistrates (work in which, following the model of the fall of princes of John Lydgate, that in turn imitated the misadventures of Boccaccio, men illustrious, usually belonging to England, they recount their fall). It is also in the Queen of the fairies, Edmund Spenser (lib. II, canto 10, st. (27-32). Shakespeare used a previous drama, Lear. The legend of King Lear has common grounds with the Cinderella: Cordelia, daughter of King Lear figure, is one of many incarnations of the type of virtuous girl pursued.
The tragedy unfold in parallel two quite similar actions in General (some have an analogy with the history of Dirghatamas in the Mahebherataand Yayetis been observed). The first and foremost is the story of Lear and his three daughters; the second aims to events of Gloucester and his two sons.
Lear, King of Britain, old authoritarian and ill advised, has three daughters: Goneril, wife of the Duke of Albania; Regan, wife of the Duke of Cornuailles, and Cordelia, whose hand aspire the King of France and the Duke of Burgundy. With the intention of dividing his Kingdom among the three daughters according to the affection they feel for him, Lear ask each one how you want you. Goneril and Regan make protests of sincere affection, and each receives one third of the Kingdom. Cordelia, modest and dignified, says that he loves you as manda duty. Angry by this response, the King divides his part of the Kingdom among the other sisters, with the condition that he, with a hundred Knights, maintained by one of them turns.
Removed the Duke of Burgundy, the King of France accepts Cordelia without dowry. The Earl of Kent, which is put on the side of Cordelia, is banished, but still the King under fake garments. Goneril and Regan, just possess power, unmask evil spirits, are missing to the Covenant stipulated by the father denied the escort of Knights, and when he indignantly rejects their odious hospitality, leave you it vague by the field during the storm. The Earl of Gloucester feel piety of the old King by a denunciation of his illegitimate son Edmund, is suspected of complicity with the French who landed in England at the behest of Cordelia, and it is made blind by the Duke of Cornuailles.
Before attempting to ruin his father, Edmund had slandered before him to his brother, the legitimate Edgard, forcing him to flee from the wrath of his father. Masquerading as a mad beggar, Edgard is reduced to living in a cottage in the countryside, and precisely in the cabin they seek refuge, during the storm, Lear together with his court jester and the loyal Kent. Lear, reduced to the level of a mere tramp, feels for the first time in his heart the anguish of human suffering; the test is too rough and loses the reason. Kent leads him to Dover, and there Cordelia receives it affectionately.

Frame in Ran (1985), from Akira
Kurosawa, based on King Lear
Meanwhile, Goneril and Regan will have fallen in love both of Edmund, who became Earl of Gloucester. Goneril, to remove in the middle of the rival, which, having been widowed, wants to marry Edmund, poisons her; but his intention to rid themselves of her own husband is discovered by a letter, and Goneril removed life. Edmund, accused of treason, is slain by Edgar in a judgment of God; but, winner of the French, had already given order to hang to Cordelia, made prisoner along with his father; too late, dying, reveals his fierce order.
Lear, who dreamed of being always next to her daughter, and therefore stood resignedly prison, looks like they strangle it in its own eyes and die by pain. The Duke of Albania, which had not approved the way as Goneril was his father, happens in the Kingdom. Edward, who, without being recognized, had become seeing-eye of his blind father and speaks to him removed from the mind the idea of suicide, is restored in the title and honours.
The drama, one of the most powerful of Shakespeare, part of the nearly abstract scheme of an allegorical fable into the latest depths of human actions and feelings. In the first scene of the division of the realm, the characters seem those of a medieval "morality"; no less linear and simplistic may seem the way that Edward is betrayed by his brother. But what may seem like paradigm on the premise used at development desperately rushing the goodness of the world problem, because although the wicked do not succeed at the end of the drama, goodness has fallen before victim of its intrigues, so that the only moral that can be removed (if it can be found any) is contained perhaps in the words of Edward to his blind and desperate father : "Men must have patience to get out of this world, so as to enter: everything is to be mature".
Image of this sad world is the storm that dominates in the center of the drama, dragging to Lear, who, with their mistakes and passions, takes on a symbolic meaning: is the whole of humanity which, by the mouth of the mad King, they despair in the midst of the storm, while his growing insanity due to the cruelty of men and the elements is more tragic in contrast to the grotesque clothing that takes the truth in the words of the jester and with the simulated madness of Edgard that pretends to be obsessed. As noted Schlegel: "In the same way that in Macbeth Shakespeare took terror to the top, seems that in King Lear it exhausted the sources of piety".

Overview and summary: Macbeth

This tragedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare was written probably between 1605 and 1606, first performed in 1606 and printed in the edition of 1623 infolio. The text is unsatisfactory by evidence of retouching that seems to present; probably there are cuts and interpolations. The source of the work is the Chronicle of Holinshed, which for the events in Scotland is based on the English version made by John Bellenden of the Héctor Bocce Scotorum Historiae (1527).
Macbeth and Banco (Banquo) are general Duncan, King of Scotland. Returning from a victorious campaign against the rebels, are in a plain three witches who prophesy that Macbeth will be "thane" (Scottish noble title similar to "baron", which indicates to the companions of the King) of Cawdor and then King, and that Bank will engender Kings, though it is not meant to be so. Immediately after comes the news that Macbeth has been named baron Cawdor.
Tempted by the partial fulfillment of prophecy and by lady Macbeth, which excites the ambition, "the milk of human kindness", Macbeth murders Duncan, stayed in his Castle, drying while you sleep, but then it is prey to remorse. Children of Duncan, Malcolm and Donalbain, flee, and Macbeth seizes the Crown. But there is still an obstacle in the way of Macbeth: the witches had prophesied that the Kingdom would go to the Bank dynasty, so Macbeth decides to get rid of him and his son Fleance, but it manages to flee.

Orson Welles in his impressive
version of Macbeth (1948)
Haunted by the specter of Bank, which appears to him during a banquet, Macbeth consulting the witches who tell you that you save from Macduff, baron of Fife; No one born of woman may do harm to Macbeth; and that will be only overcome when the forest of Brinam go to Dusinane.
Knowing that Macduff has joined with Malcolm, who is recruiting an army in England, Macbeth does murder lady Macduff and her children. Lady Macbeth, who had dropped the dagger hand trying to, before her husband, murdering Duncan and see in it for a moment his own father, loses reason and tries in vain to disappear from their hands the vision of blood; Finally dies.
Macduff and Malcolm army attacks the castle of Macbeth: passing through the forest of Birnam every soldier cut a branch and behind this curtain of foliage they move against Dusinane. Macduff, taken from the womb before time, gives death to Macbeth. The prophecy has been fulfilled and Malcolm rises to the throne.
The drama is in part an act of homage to Jacobo I (numbering of the Scottish Kings in Act IV, scene 1, and other details). The tragedies of Shakespeare, Macbeth is, without a doubt, the most vigorous. As said A. W. Schlegel, well after the Oresteia by Aeschylus, "tragic poetry not had produced nothing more grandiose and more terrible".
An angry atmosphere governs the drama from the first verses to the fulfillment of the prophecy: the infernal spell that reveals the ambitious and victorious Warrior through the prophecy of the witches, and aspirations not confessed, close on the inevitable network. The Warrior succumbs to temptation, but still is torn and retains traces of its early nobility in the midst of all the excesses that is being dragged.
It weighs on the characters of this drama the same climate of doom that weighed upon the House of the sons of Atreus; the action unfolds perhaps in several years, but any consideration of time disappears before the show, whose rhythm is measured on the horror and the grief. A sense of mystery and even irrationality (was the crime of Macbeth really necessary?; is it not a leap into the void precipitated by a fatal suggestion?) emanates from this drama; it dominates in the night, with frequent invocations to the darkness, and the evocation of the clumsy furtive and predatory creatures of darkness; stifling atmosphere of dread and doubt; for this reason the word "dread" ("fear") often appears next to images of violence and blood. Life itself is seen as "a tale told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, signifying nothing", in a famous and often quoted verses (esc. 5, 26).

Overview and summary: Antony and Cleopatra

This tragedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was probably written around 1606-1607, surely premiered in 1607 and published in 1623 infolio. Source is, without doubt, the life of Mark Antony of the parallel lives of Plutarch, in the version of North. Shakespeare also used the Roman history of Appian and could consult other English works on this subject.
The drama features Antonio in Alexandria, slave of the mature beauty of Cleopatra. Claimed by the death of his wife Fulvia and the political events, Antonio returns to Rome, where puts an end to the antagonism between him and Octavio Cesar with his marriage with Caesar, Octavia, sister event that provokes the jealousy of Cleopatra.
But this marriage does not last: Antonio leaves to Octavia and returns to Egypt, where the chain of voluptuousness returns to bind him. He attends his spiritual, only interrupted in late afternoon decomposition by generous impulses that resemble the Warrior of the past, as when with your generosity confuses shame to Enorbarbo, had abandoned him and that now you kill despising himself.
After the battle of Actium, Anthony is pursued by Caesar to Alexandria and there, after a short-lived success, suffering the final defeat. After the false news of the death of Cleopatra, first Eros asks his henchman to kill him, but Eros does not accept and is killed instead of crossing to Antonio. Antonio, following his example, is dropped on the sword. Taken to the mausoleum where they have taken refuge Cleopatra, expires in his arms. Cleopatra, to avoid the embarrassment of appearing in the triumph of Caesar, decided to truncate his life with the bite of an ASP; Carmiana and the other maidens are killed with her.
Antony and Cleopatra is the tragedy of the man of action whose will languishes and fades in the spirals of a lust that perceived unworthy but irresistible. And never a similar tragedy has been achieved with inks so lavish and lovely. Much of the fascination comes from the character of Cleopatra, represented by the poet in all of their mobility and facets of seductive; truly modern and capable of printing a rhythm I live, fast, capricious, to certain dialogues, fresh flavor, compared to the pedantic shreds of the Queens of courtly Theatre from the 16th century.
But the atmosphere of Baroque luxury, and the joy of iridescent colors and exuberant images, released by all the drama, makes him somewhat apart in Shakespearean production. On the other hand, the speed and the strangeness of the deaths, the vehemence of some cruel images (as, for example, when Cleopatra is already shown to the Roman populace Warbled and shouts: "Get before naked in the mud of the Nile and let that river covering me worm flies do me something unclean"), the insistence on the issue of the Snake (Antonio tells of Cleopatra (, stroking it: "Where is my serpent of old Nile?" and Cleopatra, similar to a snake in his flattery and deceit, is killed with an ASP) give the drama a taste of charming and perverse perdition that already seems almost romantic.
Throughout the East jeweled and sinister that it will attract a Gautier and a Flaubert is already rather than evoked in Shakespeare's play. But not only the atmosphere of lavish and lethal voluptuousness of Antony and Cleopatra was collected by the romantics; in some scenes of interrogation and mysterious resentments (IV, 3) is now a model of the atmosphere of anxiety evoked in so many dramas of Maurice Maeterlinck.

Overview and summary: the tempest

Written in 1611 and premiered the same year, this drama in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare was published in the Folio of 1623, which precedes all other parts.
The source of this work to be found in the commedia dell'arte Italian; some intrigues similar to yours have been described by different scholars. These Italian elements Shakespeare combined details of the shipwreck in Bermuda of sir George Somers (July 25, 1609). Others considered as a likely source of the tragedy the Spanish novel the great conquest of overseas.
In this drama, written at the end of his career, and a Midsummer night's dream, written at the beginning, Shakespeare uses the supernatural, by resorting to the wonderful world of Elves and fairies, fusing admirably their actions with adventure human, with what they earn in grace and depth.
Prosperous, Duke of Milan, was stripped of power by his brother Antonio, put in a boat and delivered at the mercy of the waves with his daughter Miranda. Prosperous landed on a deserted island that had been banished the witch Sycorax. Thanks to their magic arts, Prospero freed several spirits trapped by the magician, including Ariel, and submitted them to his orders. It is now at your service to the son of the sorceress, Caliban, a monstrous, abject and naive creature who is the only inhabitant of the island.
Prosperous and Miranda have lived this way for 12 years. A ship in which travel the usurper Antonio and his ally the King of Nápoles Alonso Fernando, son of the latter, shipwrecked on the coasts of the island through the charms of Prospero. At this point begins the drama: Shakespeare has condensed in the exhibition of the drama, in the second scene of the first Act, the background, occupying three acts in the winter's tale.
Passengers will save, but believe that Fernando has drowned, while Fernando thinks that others have drowned. Ferdinand and Miranda are, they fall in love as soon as they are, and are promised. Ariel, by order of Prospero, prepares few scares for Antonio and Alonso. Antonio is crushed by terror and Alonso repents of his cruelty, reconciles with Prospero and retrieves his son Fernando.
The ship is saved by the strength of spells, and Prospero and others are preparing to leave the island after Prospero has renounced magic getting rid of his magic wand. The island is held by Caliban; the many scenes in which arises with Esteban, a borrachín steward, and with the jester Trinculo, retain the seal of the commedia dell' art, which constitutes its main source; It also has a whiff of commedia the comic contrast between the perfidy of the usurper who did lose the Duchy to prosper and the plot of Caliban, who promises to Esteban and Trinculo the domain on the island if they kill his hated master. On the other hand, the gloomy impression that could produce the perfidious shipwrecked group is mitigated by the loquacious candor of the good old counselor Gonzalo.
Although comic scenes abound in this drama, although not to the extent that exist in Doctor Faustus by Marlowe, the general impression, as that produces the drama of Marlowe, it is not at all determined by the element of farce. The atmosphere of The Tempest is like purified by a hurricane. His background is the solitary side of an island in the midst of the sea; a peaceful, harmonious, light is diffused everywhere; the air, saturated with light and gentleness, resonates with supernatural voices. The grace of heaven with its sprays touched the shores of the island of the world, and this soft heavenly influence seems it is unfolding before our eyes in the short space of a few hours (between the Shakespearian dramas, The Tempest is the only one that conforms to the famous units of place, time and action).
Even though it can be said almost with certainty that Shakespeare did not read the purgatory, the climate of this drama reminds a lot on the shore of the island imagined by Dante. "tremolar della marina", the purifying freshness of the dew or the voices of the spirits are found in both poems. Men shipwrecked on the magical shore and disembark in the strange land to repent and atone for. And prosperous it appears as a Holy elder, not unlike Cato on the shores of purgatory. The last Shakespeare's vision reveal affinities with the vision of Dante, and also with the sacred mystery of The Eumenides of Aeschylus. In each of the three great poets justice is restored through a rite of Atonement; the tone of his major poems is the same, formed of tenderness and gravity at the same time, a tone of forgiveness. They reached a world view that is expressed in terms of order and harmony, Ariel music, hymns sung by the souls who purify themselves to the sound of the lyre of Apollo, everything calms it.
After Hamlet, The Tempest is the Shakespearean drama that has given broader fuel assumptions and interpretations. At certain times, the poems of Ariel and the words of Prospero, the poet himself, by the mouth of his characters, is targeting the world and expresses his concept of life, so the storm is the most personal of his dramas and seems sometimes reflect deeper playwright's thinking: "we are of the same substance of which dreams are made of ", and our brief life is surrounded by a dream" (IV, SC. 1).
The supernatural aspect of the storm was in part used by Alexander Pope (1688-1744) in stolen curl, where Ariel is the head of the Sylphs who has the job of serving the ladies; the character of Caliban Robert Browning inspired his poem Caliban upon Setebos , in which is expressed from a wild thought about the creation of the world and the divine.

Overview and summary: Venus and Adonis

This poem in stanzas of six verses of William Shakespeare was published in 1593 and dedicated by the poet to Henry Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton, as "the first spawn of my wit": everything allows, therefore, assume that it is the first book published by Shakespeare. Venus, in love with the young Adonis, retracted it is returned to the game and tries to seduce him, without success; He asks who are the next day, but Adonis wants to go hunting for wild boar. In vain the goddess tries to dissuade him. Arrival morning, Venus hears barking dogs of Adonis, and full of terror, goes in search of the beloved, he is killed by the beast.
The work has an air of family with the contemporary Hero and Leander of Marlowe (1564-1593) and Scillaes Metamorphosis of Lodge (do 1558? - 1625), which may have suggested Shakespeare meter (stanza of six poems with rhyme ababcc). It is in everything and everything infused with the taste of the time. His series of voluptuous dice postovidianos was heading to a well-defined audience of courtiers "italianised". A very meticulous and conceptualist alejandrinismo air emerges from this work of the Adonis of Marino (1569-1625): both use the same reasons, as in the wild boar which does not intend to hurt the side of Adonis, but only kiss him, motif that recurs in the pseudoteocriteo very small poem about the dead Adonis.

Overview and summary: the rape of Lucretia

This poem by William Shakespeare was published in 1594 and dedicated to Henry Wriothesley, Earl of Southampton. The poem recounts a reason of tradition: raped by sixth Tarquino, Lucrecia asks his father and husband Colatino which avenge it, and commits suicide. The poem, in stanzas of seven verses, ends in the moment in which gross and Colatino are arranged to transport the corpse of the Lucretia through Rome, to encourage the Romans to expel Tarquino. While in Venus and Adonis a chaste young was seduced by an expert, here a chaste wife was raped by a libertine.
The work is aimed at the same public courtier for whom other countries the Veronese and Titian had painted beautiful and languid nude women in the dream and loving invitation. The licentious square dominates: through the eyes of Tarquino, which lifts the bed curtains, see sleeping Lucretia, vision of Alabaster powder whiteness just shaded by blue veins. Characters run, beg and imprecan, but between the scintillation of the rhetoric is not reached to notice who was a great tragic genius.

Overview and summary: Henry VI

This historical drama in three parts of five acts in verse with fragments in prose, it was written by Shakespeare in the period 1590-92. The second part appeared anonymously in 1594, taking as a title fight between the two famous houses of York and Lancaster. The third part appeared in 1595 and was entitled the real tragedy of Ricardo Duke of York, and the death of good King Enrique VI. The three parts were published in 1623 in the first Folio of Shakespeare's works; in this Edition, the second and third parts present partial alterations in the text.
The drama is based on the Chronicles of Holinshed (1577), but also Halle, Fabyan, Grafton and Stowe could have been consulted. The first part is the wars of France in the first years of Enrique VI, of the liberation of Orléans by part of the French and the expulsion of nearly all France Englishmen. The French are guided by Juana de Arco, represented as the English troops could see it: a violent cartoon, half-Witch and half-whore. The English hero who opposes him is Talbot, which, until his death near Bordeaux, leaves in the shade to the other captains.
The events that take place in England are the differences between the nobles and the beginning of the struggle between York and Lancaster. The second part puts in scene important marriage of Henry with Margarita de Anjou, the intrigues of the York faction and other historical episodes, including the rebellion of Jack Cade, the battle of St Albans (1455) and the death of Somerset. The third part comprises since the resignation of Henry to the succession of the throne in favour of the Duke of York and the rebellion of Queen Margaret to the be disinherited his son until the battle of Tewkesbury in 1471. Henry VI is murdered by Richard, Duke of Gloucester, the future Ricardo III, whose character is already outlined here.
Youth work, Henry VI hardly differs, for its style, the contemporary dramas, so it has offered easy game to the divisive of Shakespeare, who wanted to discover the hand of Marlowe, Kyd, Peele, Geene, Lodge or Nashe in addition to Shakespeare, which would only be the reviewer of an existing work. Not excluding this possibility, it must be kept in mind, however, that a beginner style is always echo of actions and other phrases. Many of the rhetorical procedures that are so characteristic of the Richard III are also here, but on a smaller scale, in the midst of large areas devoid of decorations.
The characters, which are many, already showing signs of robust characterization and some scenes are high-efficiency, like the one in which the King visit the cardinal who at the end of his life is haunted by regrets, brief scene that Schlegel judged sublime. In the episode of the Cade rebellion the mixture of terror and ridiculous offering lawless drunkenness of the crowd is well painted.

Overview and summary: much ado for nothing

Translated often as much ado and ado, this comedy in five acts, in verse and prose, of William Shakespeare was written in the form in which we hold it in 1598, but it probably had a first draft in the youth of the author. It was printed in 1600 and 1623.
The central dramatic motive, of the lover led to deception by means of a person who adopts the resemblance of his beloved (old motif that is already in the adventures of Quereas and Callirrhoeof Chariton Afrodisia), excerpted by Shakespeare from the novels of Matteo Bandello (novel XXII), in the version of François de Belleforest (Histoires Tragiques, III 1569), and the Orlando Furioso of Ludovico Ariosto (history of Ginevra and Ariodante). Sharp discussions of Benedict and Beatriz seem inspired in the Gaspare Pallavicino and Emilia Pia in the courtier of Baldassare Castiglione, translated by sir Thomas Hoby in 1561.
The Prince of Aragon, don Pedro, whose Entourage includes Claudio and Benedict, comes to visit Leonato, Governor of Messina, father of Hero and uncle of Beatrice. Claudio falls in love with Hero and his marriage is agreed. The cheerful and acute Beatriz, and Benedict, witty and unrepentant Bachelor, is encarnizan in attack with his teasing; friends decide to make that they fall in love and make them so Benedict surprised a conversation in which the Prince and Claudio speak of a purported secret love of Beatriz for him, and Beatriz surprises a similar confidence about love which Benedict seems to feed it in secret.

Kenneth Branagh and Emma Thompson (Beatriz)
(Benedict) in the film version
directed by the own Branagh (1993)
So friends imagine to be architects of the defeat of the opponents of marriage; but harass is already at that was the germ of a secret inclination. Don Juan, brother bastard Prince and recently reconciled with him, is a superb and perverse; envious of the favour that Claudio hotel is close to his brother, imagine a deception to destroy that marriage: Borrachio, his servant, will be presented at night under the window of Hero, and the window it will hover, dressed in the clothes of Hero, Margaret, the maid of company's Hero, who is in love with Borrachio; the Prince and Claudio attend the colloquium from afar.
This is the case with the involuntary complicity of Margarita, which, dressing in Hero, thinks giving in to an innocent masquerade. Claudio and the Prince are deeply impressed, and the day of the wedding reveal the behavior of the young man in the Church. Hero faints. Council of fray Francisco, who is certain of the innocence of Hero, Leonato do spread the word that the young woman has died and Benedict, stimulated by Beatriz, challenges to Claudio for having slandered a Hero.
Meanwhile, Borrachio, drunk, confesses the deception to a companion and is heard by the guards of the night round, commanded by two grotesque officers of police, Dogberry and Verges, giving rise to a few skits with their nonsense and his childish incompetence. Borrachio is arrested, and reveals to the Prince and Claudio deception that have been victims.
Claudio offers repair Leonato and recommended him to marry a cousin of Hero instead of the supposed dead. At the time of the marriage, the wife discovers to be Hero in person. Benedict and Beatriz is also married, and her petulant acuity does not abandon them even before the altar. Don Juan, who had fled from Messina, is arrested and will be punished.
Even if Hero-Claudio entanglement visibly is the main theme of the work, with the melodramatic scene of the Church and the final effect of the pretended dead who raises (repeated, along with other features of this comedy, in the winter's tale), this does not constitute the living part of the work. Such an aspect of the plot is somewhat weakened by the circumstance that the passions aroused should harmonize with the climate of a comedy; so, for example, the scene of the Colloquium pretended, envisioned for dishonoring Hero, it is only referred to briefly, the sinister character of don Juan is just pointed and Claudio, rather than be moved with a despair reminiscent of the Troilo in such a situation (the go unless they see the Symposium's love of the beloved woman which makes it treason) It is mechanical and inhuman in its change of character to the plot requires it.
The truly living scenes are those developed between Benedict and Beatriz, couple that quite resembles of Biron-Rosalina in works of love lost. While his humorous phrases are not typical of modern taste, its brio us conquest; they are not all Comic characters, as the devotion of Beatriz by Hero, and his indignation and the diligence with which Benedict is committed to serving it defying Claudius, lend that portion of seriousness that is enough to represent them as complete human beings. Are also very funny scenes, whose character is net farce, in which are placed in ridiculous police officers; a phrase of Dogberry, who complains that the clerk has not put in his report that one of the detainees has called it ass, has become proverbial: "hoi, if he were here to write that I am an ass!".

Overview and summary: As you like it

This comedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was probably written in 1599 and published in the infolio of 1623. The source is the novel Rosalinda or the Golden legacy of Eufue (1590), Thomas Lodge (do 1558? - 1625), which in turn derives in part from the Tale of Gamelyn, attributed to Geoffrey Chaucer (1340/45-1400).
Frederick has usurped the domain of his brother the Duke, who with his sons retired to the forest of the Ardennes (the almost Homonymy with the forest of Arden in England did to Shakespeare, by creating the environment, thought especially in this). Celia, daughter of Frederick, and Rosalind, daughter of the banished Duke, who, by the great affection that unites it to Celia, has allowed stay in the Court, attend a fight in which Orlando, son of sir Rowland de Boys, defeating a wrestling champion; After the match, Rosalind and Orlando fall in love.
Orlando, to the death of his father, was entrusted to his older brother, Oliver, who abandoned him, forcing him to live among the lower and, finally, was expelled from his home. Frederick, in time to congratulate the winner of the fight, learns that he is the son of a friend of the banished Duke, enters suspicions and Orlando is forced to flee.

Laurence Olivier, Sophie Stewart and Elisabeth Bergner
in the film version of as you please (1936)
Also Rosalind, banished by Frederick, moves away, and Celia accompanies it; the first is disguised from villager and takes the name of Ganymede, the latter pretends to be her sister Aliena. In the forest of the Ardennes are with Orlando, which has met with the exiled Duke, and the Ganymede fingido wins the confidence of Orlando. Oliver goes to the forest with the intention of killing his brother Orlando, according to imposition of Frederick; but saved from a lioness by intervention of his brother, he experiences remorse for their cruel intentions; He falls for Aliena and decides to marry her.
Ganymede, for its part, promises to Orlando to come (through their magical arts) to Rosalind so take her as a wife. When couples are gathered in the presence of the banished Duke to celebrate weddings (are also Phoebe and Silvio, typical pastoral couple, and the jester Piedradetoque village Ruda Audrey), Celia and Rosalind abandon the guise. Meanwhile, comes the news that Frederick, while it went with armed forces to eliminate the exiled Duke and his henchmen, has found a venerable hermit who has induced him to repent, and to return the Duchy to his brother, withdrawing from the world.
The plot is simple and the psychology of the main characters in this comedy is barely sketched, with the exception of the contemplative Jacques, who combines cunning and melancholy, and the jester Piedradetoque. More than characters, are States of mind, all the nuances of the passion of love that can be the subject of comedy, about the dark background of the forest; drama is like a green carpet full of thriving forest scenes and human figures are subordinate to the great spirit of the forest. This atmosphere of Park is present in all episodes and highlights in the charming poems containing the work.
The pastoral conventions of 16th-century Italian and thanks and tricks of the cultured talks acquire unused freshness in the natural environment that is deeply felt by the poet. The men have left behind them, in the city, the ambition, envy, greed, all the low passions that infect the life of the Court, for only love. Together in the magic circle of the forest, the wicked (Oliver and Frederick, fiercely against their respective brothers) are won by repentance, and goodness. Thus, in this charming drama insinuated a reason that will be the central theme of The Tempest: nature seems to conspire with the forces of good to tame the ferocious men and make them fall hands fratricidal swords.

Overview and summary: night of Epiphany

With this title and also the Twelfth night has been traditionally translated the work Twelfth Night or What You Will (twelfth night, or what you want). This comedy in five acts and in verse and prose was written toward the years 1599-1600, represented perhaps the night of Epiphany of the 1600 and published in the infolio of 1623.
John Manningham, who saw the comedy represented in the annual celebration of the lawyers in the Temple by the Candelaria of 1601, compared it in his Daily to an Italian drama scams. It is assumed that it is the Dupes of the academic enthroned (1537), which is the source of Bandello, Novelle, II, 36 (translated by Belleforest, Histoires tragiques, IV, 59), which in turn derived the tale "Apollonius and Sila" farewell to the military profession of Barnabe Riche (1581). Shakespeare was probably set in the latter for the sake of the shipwreck. The deceived were translated into French by Charles Estienne entitled Les Abusés (Lyons, 1543). The dupes are Malevolti and Fabio, names that can be approximated respectively to the Shakespearian Aguecheek and Fabian. The reason for the Lady disguised as a page, pretty usual, appears in other works that Shakespeare might have seen; for example, Parismus of Emanuel Forde (1598), where the shipwreck and the names of Olivia and violet.
Two parecidisimos twins, Sebastian and Viola, are separated by a shipwreck off the coast of Illyria. Viola, carried to the beach in a boat, is used as a page with the name of Cesario, along with Duke Orsino, in love with the Countess Olivia, rejecting, however, their love and lives isolated due to mourning for his brother.
Orsino is entrusted to Viola-Cesario and sends it to intercede on his behalf near Olivia, with great torment on the other hand, because Viola has fallen in love with Orsino. Olivia, in turn, falls in love with Viola-Cesario. Meanwhile Sebastian, which during the shipwreck has been aided by a ship commanded by Antonio, comes with this to Illyria.
Next to the sentimental and romantic intrigue develops another satirical, which originated in the circle of the Countess Olivia: the rivalry between the Mayor Malvolio, Puritan austere and superb, and the Bohemian company of sir Toby Belch, uncle of the Countess, tough borrachín and swordsman; sir Andrew Aguecheek (the name can correspond, as you have been told, the Malevolti in the dupes), vain, litigant and cowardly, gentleman who aspires to the hand of the Countess; Maria, the Lady-in-waiting, small of stature but full of wit, and jester Feste, who mocks everything, even the mourning of the Countess.
The latter, at the behest of Maria, to spend a joke to Malvolio by sending you a false letter of love of the Countess, so Malvolio affects attitudes and strange abduction, believing so please her mistress; but you get the opposite effect and it is locked up like crazy in a vacant room.
Viola-Cesario, challenged by sir Andrew at the instigation of sir Toby (a challenge that both contenders compete to be scared), is saved from the conflict by Antonio, changing it by Sebastian. Antonio, arrested because of a grudge feels for him the Duke Orsino, Viola-Cesario requests a bag that he entrusted to Sebastian and accused of ingratitude to his alleged friend, who of course knows nothing of the bag.
Olivia, meeting with Sebastian, taken by Cesario, invites you to his house, and offers his love and, with the consent of Cesario, marries him. Orsino goes to visit Olivia; Antonio is led to his presence chained and argues that Cesario is the young man saved by him, while Olivia argues that he is her husband. The Duke, indignant, dismisses the hypocritical course Cesario, and Olivia when the arrival of Sebastian clarifies misunderstanding. The Duke, to realize the love of Viola, who has abandoned the manly suit, directs her affection and they marry.
The intrigue, the Fund and the atmosphere cheerful and satirical comedy has many points of contact with as you please and even more so with the comedy of the mistakes. Their incident (shipwreck, brother and sister identical and mad men's sister, so-called costume which is enclosed), it is a delicious recapitulation of Shakespearean comic matter and contains some of the most brilliant scenes of the playwright, as the of the second Act, where the comic and the emotional mix with exquisite taste and balance and, after having hinted at the tragedy (love of Olivia by Viola-Cesario) It falls into the full farce (taunt to Malvolio).
Noteworthy is especially the scene between Viola and Orsino, with its atmosphere of shy and burning passion that exalts in an impossible dream, and that Shakespeare had already outlined in the two hidalgos of Verona. Three recent acts, but does not participate in the scenic atmosphere of the second, from the scenic point of view have the ability of the best farces of Molière.
Among the characters, some are fixed-rate, encouraged by the master Shakespearean, as the Duke of Orsino, in love with love, languid and fawning, the classic "hurt", or the Countess Olivia, also a sentimental, taking attitudes of inconsolable sister and yields to the first shudder of sympathy. Are also fixed rate sir Toby, sir Andrew, jester and, in a sense, Malvolio, who liked it so much in the 17TH century that Carlos I pointed out in the issue as the most important character of the drama; but the figure of Viola is the great creation of this Shakespearean work.

Overview and summary: Richard II

This historical drama in five acts in verse, whose original title is The Tragedy of King Richard II, was perhaps written around 1595-96, published in in-cuarto in 1597, 1598, 1608 and 1615 and I Folio in 1623. Its main source is Holinshed Chronicle in its Second Edition (1587), because the fourth scene of the second Act uses a passage that is not included in the edition of 1577. Other sources are the Chronicle of Hall, S. Daniel civil wars and the English translation (of Bernera) Chronicle of the betrayal and death of Richard II of England, attributed to Jean Le Beau.
Until some time ago, it was believed to see the influence of Christopher Marlowe (1564-1593), by the way of using the chronicles in this drama. The latest review believes, on the other hand, the second and the third part of Henry VI's Shakespeare precede Marlowe Edward II (1592); so that Shakespeare would have been the first to start this type of drama, and Marlowe, although it had any influence upon him, in this case received its influence, taking him the idea of dramatizing the Chronicles. It is however true that the character of Ricardo II offers analogies with the Eduardo II.
The drama is the main episodes in the Government of Ricardo II. The King Ricardo banishes arbitrarily to Henry, nicknamed Bolingbroke, son of Juan de Gante, and Thomas Moebray, Duke of Norfolk; If in this case the weak King is pleased in their attitudes and intoxicated in the exercise of power, shortly afterwards, to pleas of Juan de Gante, mitigates the sentence of Bolingbroke, wanting bragging of magnanimous sovereign.
The news of Juan de Gante disease reveals another aspect of the character of the King: Ricardo is squeezing the brain to see how to get more money from their subjects, and the death of John offer him a magnificent chance to bring a record of confiscation and stay with the assets of the deceased.
While the King is in Ireland, Bolingbroke invade England with the rebel forces. The King returns, demolishes in imprecations against their enemies and trace an ideal augusto a sovereign character portrait, such as exceeding the inconstancy of human institutions, be protected from heaven instructs his angels to fight for him; but overlooks the exaltation vilification, according to the tenor of the news that get you. Finally retires at Flint Castle, posing as a victim of the traitors.
The Earl of Northumberland, coming to Parley, assures you that Bolingbroke only asks what belongs to him, and the King granted an interview, which comes up and subjected. Bolingbroke comes triumphantly into London, proclaimed King under the name of Enrique IV. In the famous deposition scene (Act IV, scene l), Ricardo is equated with Christ. It is true that, as noted by Walter Pater, this scene has all the solemnity of the ritual of the mass, and all the drama is certainly vested of symbolic significance: the agony and the death of God, sacrificed on the altar. Confined in the castle of Pomfret, Ricardo is killed.
The drama, as well as a viva review of political events, more subtly than other historical dramas of Shakespeare, is the study of a soul that seems to already announce that of Hamlet. With the weak and fascinating sovereign contrasts the deft, nothing sentimental Bolingbroke, who, while he pretends to want only to protect the rights of inheritance, is already behaving like a King, showing the qualities of wisdom, moderation and toughness that should make him the throne. This efficient contrast, the drama has always been very successful, and is worthy of the creator of Hamlet and King Lear.

Overview and summary: Henry V

This historical drama in five acts and in prose and verse of William Shakespeare was represented in 1599, published imperfectly in 1600 and correctly in the Folio of 1623. It is based on the Chronicle of Holinshed and the last part of the famous victories of Henry fifth. During the fifth Act (v. 31) is the only direct reference from Shakespeare to contemporary events (expedition of Essex to Ireland, March 27 - 28 September of 1599).
Henry V is clearly the favourite hero of Shakespeare; It is decorated with real and knightly virtues, it shows you honest, courageous, courteous and, in the middle of the heroic deeds, always inclined to any innocent malice that recalls his youth of Prince of Wales, companion of Falstaff. The only notable event in the life of this King was the invasion of France; but the war, as just noted Schlegel, rather is matter of that epic drama.
It was you, because Shakespeare rather than become a dramatic event, showing the moral setback of the scene. Put into contrast the impatient lightness of French generals, already victors considered themselves before the battle of Agincourt (1415), with the firm attitude of the English King and his army, reduced to a desperate end, take the resolution of dying honorably.
Contrasting the character of both Nations with manifest partiality, Shakespeare Gets a dramatic effect intended to enthuse the English audience, while the comic episodes also conspired toward the patriotic goal, showing under the flags of Enrique a slow Scottish, an ardent Irishman, and a Welsh pedantic but full of honour, each of whom speaks deforming the English with their respective dialectal features. And to excite the imagination of viewers are lyrical prologues (called "choirs") for each Act, which specifically describes the appearance of both fields before the battle.
In the Warrior episode concentrates all the interest of the drama, being the other episodes his preparation (triumph over obstacles that stand in the career of Enrique V; detention of lord Scroop, sir Thomas Grey and the Earl of Cambridge by treason) and consequences (Henry, to consolidate his conquests in France, decides to marry a French Princess and Woo Catherine of France (, episode that is dyed in irony, since the fruit of the marriage was the weak Enrique VI, under whom public affairs were from bad to worse).
Among the comic episodes we must remember that that blowhard Pistol requires the irascible Welshman Fluellen to eat leeks (Welsh emblem) which would have made mockery (of there the proverbial phrase "to eat the leak", receiving an insult). The death of Falstaff is narrated by the Lady Quickly. Henry V is a unique drama in Shakespeare's career. National epic more than drama, rhetorical splendor is its main characteristic.

Overview and summary: the merry wives of Windsor

This comedy in five acts in prose, with some parts in verse, of William Shakespeare, was written probably to 1598, published in editions "in quarto" in 1602, 1619 and 1630, and in the Edition "Folio" in 1623. The 1602 text is incomplete.
According to a tradition, the work was written in fifteen days at the request of Queen Elizabeth, who wished to see onstage to Falstaff in love. However, it seems not be a mere improvisation, by Shakespeare used a comedy already existing in her company's Repertory. It's The comedy the jealous, represented in 1593 and based on an Italian narration (the second from the first book of the Il Pecorone), where the reason for the lover hidden in a piece of furniture, common in the Italian novel, takes the form of man "hidden under a pile of dirty laundry".
In several of his characters have wanted to see caricatures of really existing persons. Thus, portraits of judge Shallow and stupid Abraham Slender nephew might have by model to Sir Thomas Luey de Charlecote, near Stratford, who, it is believed, would have pursued to Shakespeare when he was young by have hunted stealthily on their lands, whose truthfulness is questionable.
Comedy is the link for two reasons: the Falstaff who woos two rich bourgeois of Windsor who mock him, and Anne Page, who their parents want to get married. Falstaff, being lacking of money, decides to woo the women of Ford and Page, bourgeois of Windsor, since they govern the flow of their husbands.
Falstaff sends identical gallant letters to two wives, which decide to take revenge on him. On the other hand, Nym and Pistol, the accomplices of Falstaff, despechados because is has been removed, please advise on the husbands. Page is not moving, and Ford is happy with the possibility of catching "red-handed" his wife.
Falstaff is first visited by the Lady Quickly, servant of doctor Cajus, responsible for playing the role of party wall of two ladies; This assures Falstaff that both women do not want to, but please. He then receives a visit from Ford disguised with the clothes of Brook, which is pretending to be crazy love by Mrs. Ford and Falstaff promises a splendid reward if it helps you conquer it. Falstaff reveals that he has an appointment with Mrs. Ford and promises then assign the site to Brook. During the mock quotation Ford is presented with a mob of friends to witness the adultery, and Falstaff to hide him quickly and running in a large basket of dirty clothes, and then is thrown with all the clothes into the silt of the river.
In a second appointment Falstaff is dressed as a fat woman, and as such strongly beaten by Ford. Also the jealous husband is mocked twice, but finally they discovered the plot and give a last quoted Falstaff in the forest of Windsor, where assault him and pinch bundled claims and Pixies, and at last he is unmasked by Ford and Page.
The secondary plot represents the courtship of Anne, daughter of Page, by three suitors, the doctor Calus, French physician; Slender (a name which could be translated by "Emaciated" or "Enclenque"), bobo nephew of the Shallow judge (whose equivalent would be "Light"); and Fenton, a young extravagant, loved by Anne. Madonna Quickly (as they say Lady "quickly and running"), make mediator between the three, and it encourages them alike. Sir Hugh Evans, Welsh priest, it stands in favor of Slender, and is challenged by Caius, but hostilities are reduced that mistreat the English language a Welsh and French.
The last appointment given to Falstaff in the forest, Page, favoring Slender, has this kidnap his daughter, which will wear white, while the Lady Page, which protects the doctor, has his daughter view of green, and be kidnapped by the. But when the time comes the two suitors are hands a disguised as a boy, while the real Anne has fled with Fenton, with whom he will marry.
Some have wanted to see in this comedy a kind of "fabliau" staged with all the features of that somewhat Shyamalan genre: realistic portraits, clumsy ways, lack of respect for marriage, pleasure bourgeois in mistreating a womanizer patrician... Perhaps because these elements more continental than English, and especially by the sensual theme underpinning and the caricature of the Cuckold, this comedy did not much predicament between the English critics of the 19th; While in our scenes, developing bright themes of the Italian novel, it is fun and easy care. Skillful play, however suffers its composition hasty, often compensated with an extraordinary brilliance.

Overview and summary: Coriolanus

This tragedy in five acts in verse and prose of William Shakespeare was written to 1607-1608, probably represented at the beginning of 1608 and printed in 1623 infolio. The source is the life of Coriolanus in the parallel lives of Plutarch, Shakespeare read the translation of Thomas North (1579), made on the French of Jacques Amyot.
Cayo Marcio, superb Roman general, due to the wonders of courage in the war against the volsci and the taking of the city of Corioli, receives the nickname of Coriolanus. On his return to Rome, the Senate aims to be named consul, but attitude haughty and contemptuous toward the populace makes him unpopular and, despite the efforts of Menenius Agrippa, the tribunes get his exile.
His staunch enemy; House of Tulo Aufidio, general of the volsci, addresses It is warmly received and placed at the head of the volsci to take revenge on the Romans. Coriolanus reach the walls of the city and the Romans, to save it from destruction, sent to his angry friends old fellow, who instigate you to agree, but in vain. Finally the mother of Coriolanus, Volumnia, his wife Virgilia and his son going to beg him to save the city. Yields to her pleas, concludes a treaty favorable to the volsci, and returns with them to the city of Anzio. There the general of the volsci accuses him of having betrayed the interests of the people and, with help from conspirators, makes you kill in the public square.
Shakespeare followed very faithfully the sources, in the argument, in the style (similarities and expressions of the text of North are in the Shakespearian verses) and in the characterization of the protagonist. The character of Aufidio is also as found in Plutarch; Shakespeare attributed to Volumnia art of the dissimulation and based on this reason the second third Act, quite famous scene in which tries to persuade his son to that conceals for the Consulate. Virgilia and Menenius are almost entirely creations of Shakespeare.
The playwright concentrates all the interest in the protagonist, enriching with many details the story plutarquiano and highlighting this character in contrast with the crowd, whose folly and fickleness represents, to transform an historic episode that ended the fight of principles in caricature and bitter opposition between a soul of patricio closed by pride and susceptible to mass and empty soul.
More than tragedy, Coriolanus is a historical drama but a quite particular gender; It has a great relief the element of satirical and grotesque (as in the scene in which Coriolanus has to beg the votes of commoners and snatching them with an attitude of defiance rather than humility), and this aspect, as well as the figure of the zumbón Menenius, makes think that drama of ambiguous what is Troilus and Cressida, where internal conflicts of the protagonists are not painted.
In reality there is no conflict in Coriolanus (yields to the prayers of loved ones without internal struggle: as the momentary collapse of a world that soon remake on its cohesion), but a historic event that serves to illustrate the vanity and the madness of men, whose actions and reactions seem to have something automatic which makes them simultaneously laughable and sinister. The impression that leaves us drama is contained in a few words of Menenius (Act V, SC. 4): "when walking (Coriolanus) moves like a war machine..." "His voice is a funeral knell, the grumbling of a roll of drums". It is a drama harsh and strident, poor color and heat, and however, robust and "Roman" in his bitterness.

Overview and summary: Timon of Athens

This drama in five acts, in verse and prose, was written by Shakespeare probably in 1608, and published in the infolio of 1623; There is no memory that was represented during the reign of Jacobo I. The conception of the drama is truly Shakespearean, and there are passages that show affinity with King Lear, but such scenes should not be considered by the hand of Shakespeare in the form in which we have received.
The drama is taken directly rudder by Luciano, of which there were no English versions; There were, however, some Italian and a French Filbert Bretin (1582). Its affinities with an English academic drama, rudder (about 1581-1590), should probably explain them as motivated by the use of the same source of lucianesque origin, since rudder English manuscript remained and does not seem likely that Shakespeare could see it. It is possible that the source is Italian, but is not the rudder of Matteo Maria Boiardo nor of Galeotto del Carretto.
The plot of the drama is simple and is divided into different sections. In the first scenes rudder shows liberal, splendid, loving joy, and is courted by the adulation of their favorites, whose gifts returns it with extravagant bounty. In vain Flavio, Butler, strives to attract the attention of his Lord to expose its deplorable financial state.
Trapped in debts, rudder commands invite perfidious parasites to a last Banquet, and when they already believe that their demands for money were not more than an artifice to test their friendship, rudder dramatically does uncover the dishes, full of hot water, and covering them with insults throws them to the face. Cursing the city, rudder retires to live a solitary life and misántropa in a cave, and while removes the ground for finding roots that nourish, finds a treasure.
Despising the gold, delivery to Alcibiades, who had rebelled against Athens for having this shown ungrateful to their services (case similar to the ingratitude of the favored by Timon), so with it you pay the soldiers destined to destroy the city. It gives in addition part of the treasure to the courtesans Phyrne and Timandra so they infect with its contagion to the youth of Athens, the bandits that they murder, and finally to his faithful Butler Flavio, the only one that remains faithful, to live away from the consortium of men.
The bitterness of rudder desahoga in a dialogue with the Apemanto cynic: both rival in Misanthropy, but the philosopher responds to rudder have been embraced by the need for the kind of life that he has voluntarily chosen. The Senators of Athens, under the threat of troops of Alcibiades, come to implore to rudder to bring it back to the city, which promises to repair the damage that has caused him. But Timon mocks them offering them the tree next to the cave that they be hanged on it. Finally, after having his epitaph, he dies. Alcibiades, while both entered in Athens as the winner, promises to pay honor to his grave, on the shores of the sea.
The drama has a simplicity and a profile of medieval representation. The character of rudder is a mere paradigm, as of an allegory; scenes of adulation first, then repudiation and finally invective, multiply with medieval a monotony and tidiness. But the meaning of the drama is only in the satire of manners and of human ingratitude, according to the new satirical fashion that triumphed in England under Jacobo I, and found followers among playwrights such as Ben Jonson (1572-1637) and J. Marston (1576-1634).

Overview and summary: Troilus and Cressida

This drama in five acts and in verse and prose was written by Shakespeare around the year 1602. Printed in-quarto appeared the year 1609 and in the I Folio of 1623, whose list of works not listed title; the text is located after the historical dramas and tragedies before. The discontinuity between the Trojan women scenes and the Greek countryside, and the contrast between the State of active war that characterized the first and the truce presupposed by the latter, have given a pretext to some critics who have believed to see differences in style showing diversity of hands or dates.
Directly or indirectly this drama baby in four sources: the poem Troilus and Cressida of Chaucer; John Lydgate (1373-1451?) the site of Troy or the stories of Troy collection of William Caxton (do 1422? - 1491), both derived from the Trojan history of Guido delle Colonne, for the parts that refer to scenes of war; The testament of Chryseis to Henryson; and finally Homer (unless can specify how Shakespeare must know the contents of the Homeric poem) for the characterization of the Greek heroes and the introduction of Tersites.
In the same way that Chaucer, by means of the cynical and sensual Filostrato, dates back to the medieval formula of courtly love, Shakespeare, through the sentimental and chivalric Troilus and Cressida of Chaucer, goes back to the spirit of the Filostrato. With its medieval foundations, their fragments of Greek classicism and its typical façade of the 16th century, Shakespeare drama is perhaps the most variegated of all its theater.
Gives title to the drama the well known story of the love of the young Troilo by the consummate flirtatious Cressida (Chryseis), which, more than inclined to intrigue, pretends to give in with great disgust at the insistence of his uncle Pándaro, and later sent his father Calcante among the Greeks, in an exchange of prisoners, has no qualms in get to flirt then with Diomedes.
Ulysses-guided, Troilo surprises decals shop next to the Symposium in which Cressida yields to instances of Diomedes, to the point of giving the same garment of love has received the. In the battle, Troilo tries to desperately and vainly to kill his rival; at the end of the drama we shown cursing Pandarus.
Scenes concerning this matter do not represent but a part of the drama. It is a succession of pictures in which the epic is vista with disenchanted and ruthless look. Pompous descriptions, harangues of heroes, all served to highlight the fundamental and negligible cause of the war and the dissolution of extending it. Or Agamemnon with its supreme authority, nor Menelaus with memories of ridden desecration, nor Nestor with his experience and Ulysses with his wise art of governing can mode no making events continue on the right track.
Finally, when they organized a singular combat between the bluffer AJAX and Hector, the latter leaves the duel by not damaging to AJAX, which is his cousin. Achilles is presented to the less favourable light that you can imagine. After taking long time to pray out of its inertia (enlivened by the jester Tersites), resorts to deception when it comes to finding against Hector, causing his myrmidons surround and kill unarmed Trojan Warrior.
Death is omnipresent in this almost-tragedy: but the tragedy does not have the frank and direct accent of the great tragedies of Shakespeare, death doesn't show us never their franc and hard face of severe heroic Muse, but only flat bestiality of your profile undecided and traitor. It is everywhere, such as corruption and insidious rot, as subtle wasting; It is disintegration in life, as in Hamlet, tragedy of the same temple, written within walking distance of Troilus and Cressida. Courtly love (Troilo) is contaminated and led to rapid decomposition by the breath of lupanar emanating from Pandarus; the chivalric honour (that such is war, for Hector and Shakespeare) is stained and undone by the cynicism of Tersites. The Greek camp is the new world that emerged in the 16th century: does not seek glory and honour, but the power, achieved at all costs; a Machiavellian world ruled by intelligence, not passion.

Overview and summary: measure for measure

This drama in five acts in verse and prose was composed of approximately in 1604 Shakespeare, released the same year and printed in the infolio of 1623. The English source of measure for measure is the drama Promos and Cassandra (1578) of George Whetstone (do 1544?-1587?), who later translated her Heptaméron of civil discourse in the fifth story of the eighth Decade of the Hecatonmitos of Gian Battista Giraldi Cinzio (1504-1573), which had inspired the drama along with the tragedy Epitia of the same (printed in Venice in 1513 Giraldi (, but that probably already before circulating manuscript).
The theme of the judge to whom the wife or sister of a convicted person beg, which promises the forgiveness if that woman is given and that, after having it, is sent to execute the sentence, was very widespread in the literature and treated often dramatically; In addition to being it by Giraldi and Whetstone, it was by Claude Rovillet in the pedantesca Latin tragedy Philandia (published in 1556), which, however, is from a different version, in a drama represented in Besançon in the summer of 1548 and had issue by the "trial of the Duke Charles". This legend is also found in Naples, and refers to the "exemplary justice" made there by Isabel of Aragon. Among the modern was inspired by her Alexandre Dumas father in marriage on the scaffold. The most notable innovation introduced by Shakespeare in the argument refers to the character of the sister of the convicted person.
The Duke of Vienna, under the pretext of a trip outside their States, entrusted his Government to Angelo, his judge, who up to then had by man of exemplary probity. Angelo, then death sentence to Claudio, guilty of seduction of Juliet. Claudio informs her sister Elizabeth, novice in a convent, and begs him to intercede for him to Angelo. Isabel pleas fail to obtain forgiveness, but her beauty causes in the judge a tenderness that had not felt by women; so in a second conversation with her, offers you save the life of the brother if she sacrificed her honor.
Isabel, angry, refuses, and in a famous scene in the prison (Act III, scene I) puts abreast of that proposition to his brother; This one, which at first seems serenely accepting death, cling then, suddenly, to shameful hope. "The most painful and hateful existence age, pain, poverty and prison can inflict on human nature is a paradise compared to what we fear of death."
The Duke, who has not left Vienna, disguised as friar and learns of the infamous behavior of Angelo, and imagines a decoy to save Claudio. Ordering Isabel who consents to go to House of Angelo at midnight and get to Mariana, who is in love with Angelo (which has disowned her on grounds of interest), taking the place of Isabel. Barter gives result, but despite this Angelo orders that Claudio execution takes place at dawn.
The Duke has that, instead of the head of Claudius, be carried to Angelo of an ajusticiado evil-doer; After relinquishing the costume and simulating a sudden return, listen to the appeal of Elizabeth and the Mariana, and it denies to Angelo, who denies the truth of the stories of the two women. At the behest of these, Angelo, eventually confusing, is forgiven and United in marriage to Mariana, while the Duke declares his love for Elizabeth. Claudio is pardoned; Lucio, a sneering maldiciente who spoke badly of the Duke to the own disguised Duke, is condemned to marry a prostitute.
The plot is sustained by the subtle thread of an excess of costumes that compromise the coherence of the work. And while it is true that the Duke symbolizes an ethical illustrated and Christian, it is not moral or Christian continue hiding Isabel Claudio lives. His figure of silent and intrusive santon, Friar of midnight that organizes a substitution of concubine, is certainly not very sacred. Measure by measure, in fact, has stumped always critics, from Coleridge (who found it a "painful" drama) to the most recent. The only character capable of captivating sympathy appears to be the abandoned Mariana. Even though the figures of the actors in the drama are drawn with unusually hesitant hand in a Shakespeare, is, instead, decisive impression that connects us distrust and disgust towards men. Any abjection in order to live, in order to satisfy the libidinous appetite: is the refrain that stands out against the background of this surly comedy.

Overview and summary: sonnets

154 sonnets of William Shakespeare were written about before 1600, and manuscripts were (unless you've selected a 1602 Edition has been lost) until 1609, when published them the Publisher Thomas Thorpe with a dedication to a mysterious Mr. W. H., which is designated as "the sole inspiration for following sonnets" ("the onlie begetter of these insuing sonnets"). Since the sonnets seem to clarify more than his dramas the intimate life of the Shakespeare man, critics have worked hard to discover who was the mysterious Mr. W. H., without however to very positive results.
According to a widespread opinion, the sonnets are dedicated to the Earl of Southampton, Shakespeare protector (W. H. would the reversed initials of Henry Wriothesley, the Earl name). Others, who do not believe it possible that an editor dared to nominate a powerful member of the aristocracy with the single "Mr. W. H.", have thought of William Hall, a typographer who had procured the manuscript ("begetter" can be interpreted as "Attorney", in addition to as "inspiring") Although not entrusted you the printing of the same. The problem of identification suggested that Oscar Wilde the elegant story the portrait of Mr. w. H.
Another problem that impassioned critics is the identification of the rival poet, referred to in sonnets 78-86; Barnabe Barnes (1569-1609), George Chapman (1559-1634) and others have been suggested. However, inquiries about both this and the Lady Morena ("the Dark Lady") of another group of sonnets, have failed to increase what we already knew about the details of the private life of Shakespeare.
The tone of the sonnets, which, apart from the Convention of certain motifs, exudes weariness and pessimism and could preludiar Hamlet and the bleak following tragedies, seems to reveal a Shakespeare very different lucky professional the scene emerging from arid biographical documents arrived to us. Why, Yes, conventional, as abound in the numerous songbooks of the period inspired directly or indirectly in the Petrarca. Well, the reason for the immortality secured by the verse, horaciano topic that the poets of the Pléiade; fashion the theme of the night appearance of the beloved; or the games of concepts in which eyes and heart come into conflict.
But most of the sonnets of Shakespeare are distinguished from the contemporary songbooks by passionate accent of lived experience, to the point that William Wordsworth defines them as "the key with which Shakespeare opened us the heart" (although another great poet, Robert Browning, replied to this with the famous phrase "If so, Shakespeare dwarfs"). In the sonnets of the type called "Elizabethan" or "Shakespearean" (three quatrains of alternate rhymes and a final couplet: abab, cdcd, efef, gg) two or three motives which certainly relate to real-life situations can be distinguished. Its meaning is clear; just need the key of allusions.
The Songbook of Shakespeare has a dramatic development that in vain would seek in the other collections, generally devoid of a single accent well defined. Naturally, there are less characteristic sonnets, but they are scattered all throughout the collection, according to a law of Economics common even to larger works; a volume in which entire composition was a masterpiece would be abnormal, artificial. This law of economy explains the presence of mediocre sonnets much better than any possible theory that present the Shakespearean Songbook as a collective work.
What about more sonnets of Shakespeare to the modern reader is the tone of clairvoyance of the poet and the accuracy of your analysis, departing from usual schemes of that genre of literature. Often desperate clairvoyance, such as when the poet realizes his humiliation, of the abdication of its dignity to be unworthy; "odi et amo" which is reborn with already close to our sensitivity accents.
Then the confession has a new, as in sonnet 30 intimacy: "when the courts for the sweet silent thought called the remembrance of things past..." and which sometimes reaches the deep bitterness of a Christian, as in the famous sonnet 129 sermon: "waste of spirit in a desert of disgrace is the desire in Act; and until it is not act the desire is perjury, homicidal, bloody, full of blame, wild, extreme, rude, cruel, unworthy of trust: just enjoyed, now despises; searched madly, and as possessed, violently hated, as bait swallowed, intentionally, tended to go crazy takes it to that; crazy in the persecution, and so in possession... Earlier, a ghost of enjoyment; later, a dream. All the world knows it; but nobody knows how to avoid the heaven that leads men to this hell".
Anyway, its corrosive insight does not prevent the poet press notes that are the most pure and fresh in the Elizabethan lyric so rich in freshness and winged, as in Sonnet 18 songs: "Must compare yourself to a summer's day...", or 54: "Oh, how most beautiful seems beauty by sweet motif which gives purity". Even when left drag, as it had then become fashionable among the Metaphysicians of the school of John Donne, nuances and concepts, always feels alive depth of inspiration, giving universal resonances to ways and modes of time: thus in sonnet 53, playing with the meanings of "shadow": "what is the substance which you are made , that millions of strange shadows you follow, since each man has a shadow, and you, that ye are not more than one person, you can darken things... ", or 87, when applied to love legal terminology:"Goodbye, you're too expensive so I own you... the titles that I have of you lapsed all..."." Two sonnets published in 1609 (138 and 144) had already been published in somewhat different form in the volume entitled the passionate Pilgrim.
Extracted from the website: Biografías y Vidas
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