shakespeare�s sonnets by dxizRr


									english literary periods
450 – 1066 Old English (Anglo-Saxon)
1066 – 1500 Middle English
1500 – 1660 The Reneissance (Elizabethan)
1660 – 1790 Neoclassicism (Enlightenment, Age of Reason)
1790 – 1830 Romanticism
1831 – 1901 Victorian Age
1901 – 1945 Modernism
1945 – … Postmodernism (Contemporary Literature)

Structure by battles (jeżeli ktos chce wiecej to jest tez structure by funerals :)
There are two standard interpretations of the poem: one view which suggests a two-part structure
(i.e., the poem is divided between Beowulf's battles with Grendel and with the dragon) and the other,
a three-part structure (this interpretation argues that Beowulf's battle with Grendel's mother is
structurally separate from his battle with Grendel).

Beowulf – characteristics
Beowulf exemplifies the traits of the perfect hero. The poem explores his heroism in two separate
phases—youth and age—and through three separate and increasingly difficult conflicts—with
Grendel, Grendel’s mother, and the dragon. Although we can view these three encounters as
expressions of the heroic code, there is perhaps a clearer division between Beowulf’s youthful
heroism as an unfettered warrior and his mature heroism as a reliable king. These two phases of his
life, separated by fifty years, correspond to two different models of virtue, and much of the moral
reflection in the story centers on differentiating these two models and on showing how Beowulf
makes the transition from one to the other.

Christian elements
There are several similarities between Beowulf and the Bible. First, similarities between Beowulf and
Jesus: both are brave and selfless in overcoming the evils that oppose them, and both are kings that
die to save their people. Secondly, a similarity between part of The Book of Revelation (“Their place
will be in the lake that burns with fire and sulfur, which is the second death, Revelation 21:8) and the
home of Grendel and Grendel's mother. Third, he compares the words of Jesus in the Gospel of Luke
(when he pardons those who call for his crucifixion) to the portion of the poem when (before plunging
into the perilous lake) Beowulf forgives his enemy, Unferth.
Apart from that, Grendel's mother and Grendel are described as descendants of Cain.

Kenning is a circumlocution used instead of an ordinary noun in Old Norse and later Icelandic
poetry. For example, in line 10 of Beowulf the sea is called hronrade (whale road). The term kenning
has been applied by modern scholars to similar figures of speech in other languages too, especially
Old English.

Alliteration is the repetition of a leading vowel or consonant sound in a phrase. A common example
in English is "Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peppers". Alliteration can take the form of
assonance, the repetition of a vowel, or consonance, the repetition of a consonant.

In oral poetry, a formula is a repeating sequence of words used for structure and as a mnemonic by
a poet.

Wyrd is a concept in Anglo-Saxon and Nordic culture roughly corresponding to Fate. It is ancestral to
Modern English weird, which has acquired a very different signification. In a simple sense, Wyrd

refers to how past actions continually affect and condition the future, but also how the future affects
the past.

As a heroic epic
Beowulf is considered an epic poem in that the main character is a historic hero who travels great
distances to prove his strength at impossible odds against supernatural demons and beasts. The
poet who composed Beowulf, while objective in telling the tale, nonetheless utilizes a certain style to
maintain excitement and adventure within the story. An elaborate history of characters and their
lineages are spoken of, as well as their interactions with each other, debts owed and repayed, and
deeds of valour.

Other heroic epics
Ancient :
Epic of Gilgamesh (Mesopotamian mythology)
Iliad, ascribed to Homer (Greek mythology)
Odyssey, ascribed to Homer (Greek mythology)
Medieval :
La Chanson de Roland (The Song of Roland)

chansons de geste
The chansons de geste, Old French for "songs of heroic deeds [or heroic lineages]", are the epic
poems that appear at the dawn of French literature. The earliest known examples date from the late
eleventh and early twelfth centuries, nearly a hundred years before the emergence of the lyric poetry
of the trouvères (troubadours) and the earliest verse romances.

The traditional subject matter of the chansons de geste became known as the Matter of France. This
distinguished them from romances concerned with the Matter of Britain, that is, King Arthur and his
knights; and with the so-called Matter of Rome, covering the Trojan War, the conquests of Alexander
the Great, the life of Julius Cæsar and some of his Imperial successors, who were given medieval
makeovers as exemplars of chivalry.

The poems contain a small and unvarying assortment of character types; the repertoire of valiant
hero, brave traitor, shifty or cowardly traitor, Saracen giant, beautiful Saracen princess, and so forth
is one that is easily exhausted. As the genre matured, fantasy elements were introduced.

Matters (cycles) of chansons de gestee
  - the matter of Britain (King Arthur and his knights)
  - the matter of Rome (Alexander the Great)
  - the matter of France (Charles the Great, Roland)

sir gawain and the green knight
Sir Gawain and the Green Knight is a late 14th-century alliterative chivalric romance outlining an
adventure of Sir Gawain, a knight of King Arthur's Round Table. The poem survives on a single
manuscript, the Cotton Nero A.x., along with three pieces of a religious character, all written by the
"Pearl poet" or "Gawain poet," an unknown author. The four narrative poems are written in a North
West Midland dialect of Middle English.

Sir Gawain and the Green Knight as a chivalric romance
In this Arthurian tale, Sir Gawain accepts a challenge from a mysterious warrior who is completely
green. The "Green Knight" offers to allow anyone to strike him with his axe if the challenger will take
a return blow in a year and a day. Gawain accepts, and beheads him in one blow, only to have the
Knight stand up, pick up his head, and remind Gawain to meet him at the appointed time. The story

of Gawain's struggle to meet the appointment and his adventures along the way demonstrate chivalry
and loyalty.

Gawain is King Arthur's nephew and a Knight of the Round Table who appears very early in the
Arthurian legend's development. He is one of a select number of Round Table members to be
referred to as the greatest knight, most notably in Sir Gawain and the Green Knight. He is almost
always portrayed as the son of Arthur's sister Morgause (or Anna) and King Lot of Orkney and
Lothian. Gawain is often portrayed as a formidable but brash warrior, fiercely loyal to his king and
family. He is a friend to young knights, a defender of the poor, and a consummate ladies' man.

At the beginning of Sir Gawain and the Green Knight, the poet introduces the symbolic pentangle.
Scholars believe that the poet uses this symbol of fives not only to give insight into the virtues of
Gawain, but also to set the stage for the remainder of the poem. From the five points of the pentangle
the reader is presented with the five dilemmas of Sir Gawain. The challenge put forth by the Green
Knight presents Gawain with his first dilemma. (1) Known for his valor and courtesy, refusing the
challenge would damage his reputation. By accepting the challenge of the Green Knight, Gawain
now enters into his second dilemma. (2) He must, “escape unslain, provided that his honor might
also emerge unscathed". Gawain enters into a bargain with Bertilak leading to his third dilemma,
(3)“Whatever I win in the woods I will give you at eve, and all you have earned you must offer
to me”. With a “gift of body", Gawain is tempted by Bertilak's wife. This gift he cannot exchange with
Bertilak, nor can he refuse it as a knight of renowned courtesy. (4)Gawain must refuse the lady’s
attempts at seduction, yet he must do so courteously; the dilemma is his fourth. (5)Gawain
enters his fifth dilemma when he accepts the gift of the girdle. He agrees to hide the girdle from
Bertilak, yet his bargain with the lord requires him to exchange it.

Language and style
Alongside its advanced plot and rich language, the poem's chief interest for literary critics is its
historical symbolism. Everything, from the Green Knight, to the beheading game, to the girdle given
Gawain as a protection from the axe, is richly symbolic and steeped in Celtic, Germanic, and other
cultures and folklores. As a result, critics often compare Gawain to similar, older works, such as the
Irish tales of Cúchulainn, in order to find possible meanings and contexts for the symbolism and
themes within the poem.

geoffrey chaucer
Geoffrey Chaucer (c. 1343 – October 25, 1400) was an English author, poet, philosopher,
bureaucrat, courtier and diplomat. Although he wrote many works, he is best remembered for his
unfinished frame narrative The Canterbury Tales. Sometimes called the father of English literature,
Chaucer is credited by some scholars as being the first author to demonstrate the artistic legitimacy
of the vernacular English language, rather than French or Latin.
3 periods of literary career
Chaucer's works are sometimes grouped into, first a French period, then an Italian period and finally
an English period, with Chaucer being influenced by those countries' literatures in turn.

Canterbury Tales – structure, frame tale
The tales, some of which are originals and others not, are contained inside a frame tale and told by a
collection of pilgrims on a pilgrimage from Southwark to Canterbury to visit the shrine of Saint
Thomas Becket at Canterbury Cathedral. The Canterbury Tales are written in Middle English.
Although the tales are considered to be his magnum opus (greatest work), some believe the structure
of the tales are indebted to the works of The Decameron, which Chaucer is said to have read on an
earlier visit to Italy. (other examples of frame tale : The Book of Good Love by Juan Ruiz and
Boccaccio's Decameron)

Characters in General Prologue, narrators as representatives of English society

The pilgrims include a knight, his son a squire, the knight's yeoman, a prioress accompanied by a
second nun and the nun's priest, a monk, a friar, a merchant, a clerk, a sergeant of law, a franklin, a
haberdasher, a carpenter, a weaver, a dyer, a tapestry weaver, a cook, a shipman, a doctor of
physic, a wife of Bath, a parson, his brother a plowman, a miller, a manciple, a reeve, a summoner, a
pardoner, the host, and a portrait of Chaucer himself. The order the pilgrims are introduced places
them in a social order, describing the nobility in front, the craftsmen in the middle, and the peasants
at the end. A canon and his yeoman later join the pilgrimage and tell one of the tales.

The General Prologue is the basis for Chaucer’s mirror of society (Wimsatt, 174)*. The idea that there
are so many characters with their own stories to tell is representative of a real society. Societies
require multiple dimensions in order to be called a society. Even the corrupt people in some way, are
if not desired, certainly required in a society because it is impossible to have a completely ideal
society where everyone is happy and ethical. In addition to the numerous characters, Chaucer offers
the reader “addition ranks and segments of society within the various tales” (Wimsatt, 174). Rulers
are represented extremely well with stories about emperors, kings, popes and bishops.

the characters in Chaucer are of extremely varied stock, including representatives of most of the
branches of the middle classes at that time. Not only are the participants very different, but they tell
very different types of tales, with their personalities showing through both in their choices of tales and
in the way they tell them.

Sense of humour
Some of the tales are serious and others comical. Religious malpractice is a major theme as well as
focusing on the division of the three estates. Most of the tales are interlinked with similar themes
running through them and some are told in retaliation for other tales in the form of an argument.

Genres, fabliaux
The themes of the tales vary, and include topics such as courtly love, treachery, and avarice. The
genres also vary, and include romance, Breton lai, sermon, beast fable, and fabliaux.

The fabliau (plural fabliaux or "'fablieaux'") is a comic, usually anonymous tale written by jongleurs in
northeast France circa the 13th Century. They are generally bawdy in nature, and several of them
were reworked by Geoffrey Chaucer for his Canterbury Tales. Some 150 French fabliaux are extant
depending on how narrowly fabliau is defined.

Typical fabliaux concern cuckolded husbands, rapacious clergy and foolish peasants. The status of
peasants appears to vary based on the audience for which the fabliau was being written. Poems that
were presumably written for the nobility portray peasants (vilains in French) as stupid and vile,
whereas those written for the lower classes often tell of peasants getting the better of the clergy.

shakespeare’s sonnets

The term "sonnet" derives from the Provençal word "sonet" and the Italian word "sonetto," both
meaning "little song." By the thirteenth century, it had come to signify a poem of fourteen lines that
follows a strict rhyme scheme and logical structure. The conventions associated with the sonnet have
evolved over its history.

Italian and English sonnet
The Italian sonnet comprises two parts. First, the octave (two quatrains), which describe a problem,
followed by a sestet (two tercets), which gives the resolution to it. Typically, the ninth line creates a
"turn" or volta which signals the move from proposition to resolution. Even in sonnets that don't

strictly follow the problem/resolution structure, the ninth line still often marks a "turn" by signalling a
change in the tone, mood, or stance of the poem.

In the sonnets of Giacomo da Lentini, the octave rhymed a-b-a-b, a-b-a-b; later, the a-b-b-a, a-b-b-a
pattern became the standard for Italian Sonnets. For the sestet there were two different possibilities,
c-d-e-c-d-e and c-d-c-c-d-c. In time, other variants on this rhyming scheme were introduced such as
The first known sonnets in English, written by Sir Thomas Wyatt and Henry Howard, Earl of Surrey,
used this Italian scheme. While Wyatt introduced the sonnet into English, it was Surrey who gave
them the rhyme scheme, meter, and division into quatrains that now characterizes the English
sonnet. Sir Philip Sidney's sequence Astrophil and Stella (1591) started a tremendous vogue for
sonnet sequences: the next two decades saw sonnet sequences by William Shakespeare, Edmund
Spenser, Michael Drayton, Samuel Daniel, Fulke Greville, William Drummond of Hawthornden, and
many others.These sonnets were all essentially inspired by the Petrarchan tradition, and generally
treat of the poet's love for some woman; the exception is Shakespeare's sequence.

Structure of sonnets
The sonnets are each constructed from three four-line stanzas (called quatrains) and a final couplet
composed in iambic pentameter a meter used extensively in Shakespeare's plays) with the rhyme
scheme abab cdcd efef gg (this form is now known as the Shakespearean sonnet). The only
exceptions are Sonnets 99, 126, and 145. Number 99 has fifteen lines. Number 126 consists of six
couplets, and two blank lines marked with italic brackets; 145 is in iambic tetrameters, not
pentameters. Often, the beginning of the third quatrain marks the "turn", or the line in which the mood
of the poem shifts, and the poet expresses a revelation or epiphany. This is sometimes known as the

The first 17 sonnets are written to a young man, urging him to marry and have children, thereby
passing down his beauty to the next generation. These are called the procreation sonnets. Most of
them, however, 18-126, are addressed to a young man expressing the poet's love for him. Sonnets
127-152 are written to the poet's mistress expressing his love for her. The final two sonnets, 153-154,
are allegorical. The final thirty or so sonnets are written about a number of issues, such as the young
man's infidelity with the poet's mistress, self-resolution to control his own lust, beleaguered criticism
of the world, etc.

Most of the sonnets are addressed to a beautiful young man, a rival poet, and a dark-haired lady.
Readers of the sonnets today commonly refer to these characters as the Fair Youth, the Rival Poet,
and the Dark Lady. The narrator expresses admiration for the Fair Youth's beauty, and later has an
affair with the Dark Lady. It is not known whether the poems and their characters are fiction or
autobiographical. If they are autobiographical, the identities of the characters are open to debate.

Shakespeare's sonnets are frequently more earthy and sexual than contemporary sonnet sequences
by other poets. One interpretation is that Shakespeare's Sonnets are in part a pastiche or parody of
the three centuries-long tradition of Petrarchan love sonnets; in them, Shakespeare consciously
inverts conventional gender roles as delineated in Petrarchan sonnets to create a more complex and
potentially troubling depiction of human love. Shakespeare also violated many sonnet rules which
had been strictly obeyed by his fellow poets: he speaks on human evils that do not have to do with
love (66), he comments on political events (124), he makes fun of love (128), he parodies beauty
(130), he plays with gender roles (20), he speaks openly about sex (129) and even introduces witty
pornography (151).

elizabethan theatre

English Renaissance theatre derived from several medieval theatre traditions, such as the mystery
plays that formed a part of religious festivals in England and other parts of Europe during the Middle
Ages. The mystery plays were complex retellings of legends based on biblical themes, originally
performed in churches but later becoming more linked to the secular celebrations that grew up
around religious festivals. Other sources include the morality plays that evolved out of the
mysteries, and the "University drama" that attempted to recreate Greek tragedy. The Italian tradition
of Commedia dell'arte as well as the elaborate masques frequently presented at court came to play
roles in the shaping of public theatre.

The crucial initiating development was the building of The Theatre by James Burbage, in Shoreditch
in 1576. The Theatre was rapidly followed by the nearby Curtain Theatre (1577), the Rose (1587),
the Swan (1595), the Globe (1599), the Fortune (1600), and the Red Bull (1604).

Archaeological excavations on the foundations of the Rose and the Globe in the late twentieth
century showed that all the London theatres had individual differences; yet their common function
necessitated a similar general plan. The public theatres were three stories high, and built around an
open space at the centre. Usually polygonal in plan to give an overall rounded effect (though the Red
Bull and the first Fortune were square), the three levels of inward-facing galleries overlooked the
open center, into which jutted the stage—essentially a platform surrounded on three sides by the
audience, only the rear being restricted for the entrances and exits of the actors and seating for the
musicians. The upper level behind the stage could be used as a balcony, as in Romeo and Juliet or
Antony and Cleopatra, or as a position from which an actor could harangue a crowd, as in Julius

Usually built of timber, lath and plaster and with thatched roofs, the early theatres were vulnerable to
fire, and were replaced (when necessary) with stronger structures. When the Globe burned down in
June 1613, it was rebuilt with a tile roof; when the Fortune burned down in December 1621, it was
rebuilt in brick (and apparently was no longer square).

The acting companies functioned on a repertory system; unlike modern productions that can run for
months or years on end, the troupes of this era rarely acted the same play two days in a row.
Consider the 1592 season of Lord Strange's Men at the Rose Theatre as far more representative:
between Feb. 19 and June 23 the company played six days a week, minus Good Friday and two
other days. They performed 23 different plays, some only once, and their most popular play of the
season, The First Part of Hieronimo, (based on Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy), 15 times. They never
played the same play two days in a row, and rarely the same play twice in a week.The workload on
the actors, especially the leading performers like Edward Alleyn, must have been tremendous.

One distinctive feature of the companies was that they included only males. Until the reign of Charles
II, female parts were played by adolescent boy players in women's costume.

shakespeare’s works

History plays
King John
Richard II
Henry IV, part 1
Henry IV, part 2
Henry V
Henry VI, part 1†
Henry VI, part 2

Henry VI, part 3
Richard III
Henry VIII†

All's Well That Ends Well
As You Like It
The Comedy of Errors
Love's Labour's Lost
Measure for Measure
The Merchant of Venice
The Merry Wives of Windsor
A Midsummer Night's Dream
Much Ado About Nothing
The Taming of the Shrew
Twelfth Night, or What You Will
The Two Gentlemen of Verona
The Two Noble Kinsmen

Romeo and Juliet
Titus Andronicus
Timon of Athens
Julius Caesar
Troilus and Cressida
King Lear
Antony and Cleopatra

Pericles, Prince of Tyre
The Tempest
The Winter’s Tale

Lost plays
Love's Labour's Won

First Folio
The First Folio is the term applied by modern scholars to the first published collection of William
Shakespeare's plays; its actual title is Mr. William Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, & Tragedies.

Printed in folio format and containing 36 plays, it was prepared by Shakespeare's colleagues John
Heminges and Henry Condell in 1623, about seven years after Shakespeare's death. Although
eighteen of Shakespeare's plays had been published in quarto prior to 1623, the First Folio is the
only reliable text for about twenty of the plays, and a valuable source text even for many of those
previously published. The Folio includes all of the plays generally accepted to be Shakespeare's, with
the exception of Pericles, Prince of Tyre and The Two Noble Kinsmen. It does not include his poems.

Comedy – Merchant of venice
Shakespearean comedy
"Comedy" in its Elizabethan usage had a very different meaning from modern comedy. A
Shakespearean comedy is one that has a happy ending, usually involving marriage for all the
unmarried characters, and a tone and style that is more lighthearted than Shakespeare's other plays.

Shakespearean comedies also tend to have :
·     A struggle of young lovers to overcome difficulty that is often presented by elders
·     Separation and unification
·     Mistaken identities
·     A clever servant
·     Heightened tensions, often within a family
·     Multiple, intertwining plots
·     Frequent use of puns (phrase that deliberately exploits confusion between similar-sounding
words for humorous or rhetorical effect)

Anti-semitism : Critics still argue over whether the play is itself anti-semitic, or that it is merely a play
about anti-Semitism, or whether the foreign setting, including Shylock's ethnicity, is a literary device
used to couch uncomfortable truths.
The anti-Semitic reading
English society in the Elizabethan era has been described as anti-Semitic. English Jews had been
expelled in the Middle Ages and were not permitted to return until the rule of Oliver Cromwell. Jews
were often presented on the Elizabethan stage in hideous caricature, with hooked noses and bright
red wigs, and were usually depicted as avaricious usurers; an example is Christopher Marlowe's play
The Jew of Malta, which features a comically wicked Jewish villain called Barabas. They were usually
characterized as evil, deceptive, and greedy.
During the 1600s in Venice and in some other places, Jews were required to wear a red hat at all
times in public to make sure that they were easily identified. If they did not comply with this rule they
could face the death penalty. Jews also had to live in a ghetto protected by Christians, supposedly for
their own safety. The Jews were expected to pay their guards.
Readers may see Shakespeare's play as a continuation of this anti-Semitic tradition. The title page of
the Quarto indicates that the play was sometimes known as The Jew of Venice in its day, which
suggests that it was seen as similar to Marlowe's The Jew of Malta. One interpretation of the play's
structure is that Shakespeare meant to contrast the mercy of the main Christian characters with the
vengefulness of a Jew, who lacks the religious grace to comprehend mercy. Similarly, it is possible
that Shakespeare meant Shylock's forced conversion to Christianity to be a "happy ending" for the
character, as it 'redeems' Shylock both from his unbelief and his specific sin of wanting to kill Antonio.
This reading of the play would certainly fit with the anti-Semitic trends present in Elizabethan
The sympathetic reading
Many modern readers and theatregoers have read the play as a plea for tolerance as Shylock is a
sympathetic character. Shylock's 'trial' at the end of the play is a mockery of justice, with Portia acting
as a judge when she has no real right to do so. Thus, Shakespeare is not calling into question
Shylock's intentions, but the fact that the very people who berated Shylock for being dishonest have
had to resort to trickery in order to win.

Shakespeare – Tragedies

Shakespeare wrote tragedies from the beginning of his career. One of his earliest plays was the
Roman tragedy Titus Andronicus, which he followed a few years later with Romeo and Juliet.
However, his most admired tragedies were written in a seven-year period between 1601 and 1608.
These include his four major tragedies Hamlet, Othello, King Lear and Macbeth, along with Antony &
Cleopatra and the lesser-known Timon of Athens and Troilus and Cressida.

Hero : Many have linked these plays to Aristotle's precept about tragedy: that the protagonist must
be an admirable but flawed character, with the audience able to understand and sympathize with the
character. Certainly, all of Shakespeare's tragic protagonists are capable of both good and evil. The
playwright always insists on the operation of the doctrine of free will; the (anti)hero is always able to
back out, to redeem himself. But, the author dictates, they must move unheedingly to their doom.

Love tragedies : Romeo and Juliet, Antony & Cleopatra, and Othello could all be considered love
tragedies. These tragedies differ from the other tragedies in that the lovers are not doomed through
any fault of their own, but because of some barrier in the world around them. In these tragedies,
death is almost a kind of consummation of their love -- as if love can not properly succeed in a tragic

Senecan tragedy : body of nine closet dramas (i.e., plays intended to be read rather than
performed), written in blank verse by the Roman Stoic philosopher Seneca in the 1st century AD.
Rediscovered by Italian humanists in the mid-16th century, they became the models for the revival of
tragedy on the Renaissance stage. The Elizabethan dramatists found Seneca's themes of
bloodthirsty revenge more congenial to English taste than they did his form. The first English tragedy,
Gorboduc (1561), by Thomas Sackville and Thomas Norton, is a chain of slaughter and revenge
written in direct imitation of Seneca. Senecan influence is also evident in Thomas Kyd's The Spanish
Tragedy and Shakespeare's Hamlet: both share a revenge theme, a corpse-strewn climax, and
ghosts among the cast, which can all be traced back to the Senecan model.

Hubris : according to its modern usage, is exaggerated self pride or self-confidence (overbearing
pride), often resulting in fatal retribution. In Ancient Greece, "hubris" referred to actions taken in order
to shame the victim, thereby making oneself seem superior.Hubris against the gods is often attributed
as a character flaw of the heroes in Greek tragedy, and the cause of the "nemesis", or destruction,
which befalls these characters.

Hamartia : In Greek tragedy, the concept of hamartia as an error in judgment or unwitting mistake is
applied to the actions of the hero. For example, the hero might attempt to achieve a certain objective
X; by making an error in judgment, however, the hero instead achieves the opposite of X, with
disastrous consequences. Whether Aristotle regards the “flaw” as intellectual or moral has been hotly
discussed. It may cover both senses. The hero must not deserve his misfortune, but he must cause it
by making a fatal mistake, an error of judgement, which may well involve some imperfection of
character but not such as to make us regard him as “morally responsible” for the disasters although
they are nevertheless the consequences of the flaw in him, and his wrong decision at a crisis is the
inevitable outcome of his character.

Catharsis : Using the term 'catharsis' to refer to a form of emotional cleansing was first done by the
Greek philosopher Aristotle in his work Poetics. It refers to the sensation, or literary effect, that would
ideally overcome an audience upon finishing watching a tragedy (a release of pent-up emotion or

Soliloquy : Playwrights such as Shakespeare and Goethe used the soliloquy to great effect in order
to reveal their characters' personal thoughts, emotions, and motives without resorting to third-person
narration. Hamlet's "To be or not to be" speech may be the most famous soliloquy. There is a
dramatic convention that soliloquies, like "asides" to the audience, cannot necessarily be heard or
noticed by the other characters, even if they are clearly delivered within earshot.

Other Elizabethan dramatists
Thomas Kyd –The Spanish Tragedy, possible author of pre-Shakespeare Hamlet
Christopher "Kit" Marlowe – Tamburlaine, The Jew of Malta, The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus

John Webster - The White Devil, The Duchess of Malfi

John Lyly – Endymion, Campaspe, Sapho and Phao, Gallathea, Midas, Love's Metamorphosis
Ben Johnson - Volpone, the Alchemist
Thomas Dekker - The Honest Whore, The Whore of Babylon


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