I take the following lines from the preface to illustrate our intention being the same with the definitions that follow:
William Shakespeare The English playwright, poet, and actor William Shakespeare is generally acknowledged to be the greatest of English writers and one of the most extraordinary creators in human history.
The most crucial fact about William Shakespeare's career is that he was a popular dramatist. Born 6 years after Queen Elizabeth I had ascended the throne, contemporary with the high period of the English Renaissance, Shakespeare had the good luck to find in the theater of London a medium just coming into its own and an audience, drawn from a wide range of social classes, eager to reward talents of the sort he possessed.
His entire life was committed to the public theater, and he seems to have written nondramatic poetry only when enforced closings of the theater made writing plays impractical. It is equally remarkable that his days in the theater were almost exactly contemporary with the theater's other outstanding achievements—the work, for example, of Christopher MarloweBen Jonsonand John Webster.
Shakespeare was born on or just before April 23,in the small but then important Warwickshire town of Stratford. His mother, born Mary Arden, was the daughter of a landowner from a neighboring village.
His father, John, son of a farmer, was a glove maker and trader in farm produce; he had achieved a position of some eminence in the prosperous market town by the time of his son's birth, holding a number of responsible positions in Stratford's government and serving as mayor in Byhowever, John Shakespeare had begun to encounter the financial difficulties which were to plague him until his death in Though no personal documents survive from Shakespeare's school years, his literary work shows the mark of the excellent if grueling education offered at the Stratford grammar school some reminiscences of Stratford school days may have lent amusing touches to scenes in The Merry Wives of Windsor.
Like other Elizabethan schoolboys, Shakespeare studied Latin grammar during the early years, then progressed to the study of logic, rhetoric, composition, oration, versification, and the monuments of Roman literature.
The work was conducted in Latin and relied heavily on rote memorization and the master's rod. A plausible tradition holds that William had to discontinue his education when about 13 in order to help his father. At 18 he married Ann Hathaway, a Stratford girl. They had three children Susanna, ; Hamnet, ; and his twin, Judith, and who was to survive him by 7 years.
Shakespeare remained actively involved in Stratford affairs throughout his life, even when living in London, and retired there at the end of his career. The years between andhaving left no evidence as to Shakespeare's activities, have been the focus of considerable speculation; among other things, conjecture would have him a traveling actor or a country schoolmaster.
The earliest surviving notice of his career in London is a jealous attack on the "upstart crow" by Robert Greene, a playwright, professional man of letters, and profligate whose career was at an end in though he was only 6 years older than Shakespeare.
Greene's outcry testifies, both in its passion and in the work it implies Shakespeare had been doing for some time, that the young poet had already established himself in the capital.
So does the quality of Shakespeare's first plays: Early Career Shakespeare's first extant play is probably The Comedy of Errors ; like most dates for the plays, this is conjectural and may be a year or two offa brilliant and intricate farce involving two sets of identical twins and based on two already-complicated comedies by the Roman Plautus.
Though less fully achieved, his next comedy, The Two Gentlemen of Veronais more prophetic of Shakespeare's later comedy, for its plot depends on such devices as a faithful girl who educates her fickle lover, romantic woods, a girl dressed as a boy, sudden reformations, music, and happy marriages at the end.
The last of the first comedies, Love's Labour's Lostis romantic again, dealing with the attempt of three young men to withdraw from the world and women for 3 years to study in their king's "little Academe," and their quick surrender to a group of young ladies who come to lodge nearby.
If the first of the comedies is most notable for its plotting and the second for its romantic elements, the third is distinguished by its dazzling language and its gallery of comic types.
Already Shakespeare had learned to fuse conventional characters with convincing representations of the human life he knew. Though little read and performed now, Shakespeare's first plays in the popular "chronicle," or history, genre are equally ambitious and impressive.
Dealing with the tumultuous events of English history between the death of Henry V in and the accession of Henry VII in which began the period of Tudor stability maintained by Shakespeare's own queenthe three "parts" of Henry VI and Richard III are no tentative experiments in the form: Nothing so ambitious had ever been attempted in England in a form hitherto marked by slapdash formlessness.
Shakespeare's first tragedy, Titus Andronicusreveals similar ambition. Though its chamber of horrors— including mutilations and ingenious murders—strikes the modern reader as belonging to a theatrical tradition no longer viable, the play is in fact a brilliant and successful attempt to outdo the efforts of Shakespeare's predecessors in the lurid tradition of the revenge play.
When the theaters were closed because of plague during much ofShakespeare looked to nondramatic poetry for his support and wrote two narrative masterpieces, the seriocomic Venus and Adonis and the tragic Rape of Lucrece, for a wealthy patron, the Earl of Southampton.
Both poems carry the sophisticated techniques of Elizabethan narrative verse to their highest point, drawing on the resources of Renaissance mythological and symbolic traditions. Shakespeare's most famous poems, probably composed in this period but not published untiland then not by the author, are the sonnets, the supreme English examples of the form.
Writing at the end of a brief, frenzied vogue for sequences of sonnets, Shakespeare found in the conventional line lyric with its fixed rhyme scheme a vehicle for inexhaustible technical innovations—for Shakespeare even more than for other poets, the restrictive nature of the sonnet generates a paradoxical freedom of invention that is the life of the form—and for the expression of emotions and ideas ranging from the frivolous to the tragic.
Though often suggestive of autobiographical revelation, the sonnets cannot be proved to be any the less fictions than the plays.Many of William Shakespeare's plays have similar themes that involve characters with comparable character flaws.
He uses tragic heroes -- or antiheroes -- in his tragedies and comedies to make important points about morality, free-will, justice and revenge. Is Elizabethan theatre an historical period, just Shakespeare’s plays, a theatre style, or all of the above? Sometimes, performance styles are associated with periods in history (and hence, theatre history) and Elizabethan theatre (or Elizabethan drama) is one of these examples.
The conceptual design in Shakespeare's comedy: an analysis of comic form. [Rose A Zimbardo] Home. WorldCat Home About WorldCat Help. Search. Search for Library Items Search for Lists Search for Contacts Search for a Library.
Create. Characteristics of Tragedy & Comedy -- A Debatable List The following list by John Morreall represents a conglomeration of varying theory on the nature of tragedy and comedy. Personally, I find (depending on the play) some of the characteristics more convincing and others less so.
Sep 01, · These words, spoken by Polonius in Act 2, Scene 2, of Hamlet, are the inspiration for this quiz about Shakespeare’s genres. The Folger, along with many Shakespeare scholars, recognizes five categories of Shakespeare’s work: comedies, histories, tragedies, romances, and poems.
William Shakespeare >The English playwright, poet, and actor William Shakespeare () is >generally acknowledged to be the greatest of English writers and one of the >most extraordinary creators in human history.