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For convenience of reference, this list is reprinted: (from "Palladis Tamia," 1598). “As Plantus and Seneca are accounted the best for Comedy and Tragedy among the Latines; so Shakespere among ye English is the most excellent in both kinds for the stage: for Comedy, witnes his Gētiemē of Verona, his Errors, his Love labor8 lost, his Love labors conne, his Midsummer night dreame, and his Merchant of Venice: for Tragedy his Richard the 2, Richard the 3, Henry the 4, King John, Titus Andronicus, and his Romeo and Juliet."
When When CHRONOLOGICAL ORDER OF COMEDIES:
1. Two GENTLEMEN OF VERONA ....... 2. COMEDY OF ERRORS 3. LOVE'S LABOUR 's Lost...... 4. ALL'S WELL THAT ENDS WELL....... 5. TAMING OF THE SHREW ..... 6. MIDSUMMER NIGHT'S DREAM. 7. THE MERCHANT OF VENICE... 8. MUCH ADO ABOUT NOTHING. 9. MERRY WIVES OF WINDSOR. 10. As You LIKE IT ........ 11. TWELFTH NIGHT ........... 12. MEASURE FOR MEASURE.. 13. A WINTER'S TALE................ 14. THE TEMPEST......
1592 1593 1594 1595 1595 1596 1598 1599 1601 1602 1602 1604 1611 1612
1623 1623 1598 1623 1623 1600 1600 1600 1602 1623 1623 1623 1623 1623
SYNOPTICAL TABLE OF SHAKESPEARE'S CAREER.
(wool-stapler and glover, afterwards senior Alderman, in Stratford- Date, Age on-Avon, Warwickshire,) and Mary Arden' his wife-born April 23...
1564 18 Marriage to Anne Hathaway,d of Shottery, near Stratford..
1582 21 Alleged threatened prosecution for deer-stealing-flight to London.. 1585 22 Employment in London as Actor and subsequently Adapter of Plays.
1586 23 Performance of First Adapted Plays...
1587 24 Supposed production of First Original Play.
1588 25 Became Shareholder in the "Blackfriars” Theatre...
1589 29 Became Pari-Proprietor of the “Globe” Theatre..
1593 29 First Poem, “Venus and Adonis,” published..
1593 30 Second Poem, "Tarquin and Lucrece," published..
1594 33 Bought “ New-Place House, &c.,'' in Stratford-on-Avon
1597 35 Third Poem, "The Passionate Pilgrim, '&c., published..
1599 39 Named second in Patent granted by James I to the “King's Servants".. 1603 39 Ceased appearing as an Actor (being Part-Proprietor and Author). 1603 45 Fourth Poem—" Sonnets" (15+ in number,) published...
1609 49 Retirement from Management to Stratford..
1613 52 Date of “Last Will and Testament," March 4th)
1616 52 Death at Stratford-on-Avon (April 23d).
1616 a There are extant five autographs of the Poet, all differing in spelling. Many modern editors have preferred * Shakspere,” (or" Shakspeare," in deference to the last signature in his Will;) but in the Dedications of bis Poems, as well as in nearly all the printed quartos of bis Plays, and repeatedly in the First Folio, the name is printed “Shakespeare."
b John Shakespeare was, in 1569, High Bailiff (or Mayor) of Stratford : he died 1601. c Margery (Arden) Shakespeare, the Poet's mother, died 1587. d Anne Hathaway, daughter of Richard Hathaway, a “substantial yeoman,” was eight
" years older than her husband. She died in 1623, at the age of 67. - There were three children: (1) Susanna, baptized May 26, 1583; (2) Hamnet, and (3) Judith (twins) baptized February 2, 1584.
(1) Susanna, the elder daughter, was, in 1607, married to Dr. John Hall; she died in 1649, aged sixty-six, leaving an only child, Elizabeth.*
(2) Hamnet, the Poet's only son, died in 1596, at the age of 12.
* This lady, the only child of Dr. and Mrs. Hall, the Poet's sole surviving grandchild, was twice married; first to Thomas Nash, “gentleman," who died in 1617; - next, two years later, to Sir John Barnard of Abington, Northamptonshire. As ied childless in 1669, the family of William Shakespeare became extinct.
TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA.
Very considerable interest belongs to the play of “The Two Gentlemen of Verona; "as, according to evidence internal and external, it is probably Shakespeare's earliest original dramatic production. Being the first Comedy mentioned by Meres, (see page 6,) it may have been performed about 1592, but it was not printed till in the folio of 1623.
At whatever date it was written, it assuredly proves that the author was a novice in theatrical composition; although he displays, in harmonious diction, a considerable amount of romantic tenderness-often, however, hampered with vagueness and indecision; generally simple and natural, but seldom dramatic; and nowhere exhibiting either imaginative power or Promethean fire. Yet here we have the germs of many future flowers-germs, which, it must be confessed, give but little promise of stately growth and variegated blossom.
The incidents embodied in the Comedy may have been founded on the pastoral romance of “Diana Enamorada,” by the Portuguese writer George of Montemayor (1542); blended with one of the stories in Sir Philip Sydney's" Arcadia " (1590); or, more probably, on a now lost play produced in 1584, “ The History of Felix and Philiomena,”-taken from the Portuguese story of “Diana." The buffoonery introduced must be considered, not as an emanation of scholarly wit or judgment, but as a youthful sacrifice to a depraved popular taste. Dr. Johnson thinks that the text is comparatively pure; having escaped corruption because it was seldom performed, and consequently less exposed to the hazards or to the vagaries of transcribers. The moral of the play-for even the youthful Shakespeare does not write without an object-is, Forgiveness.
The Characters retained in this Condensation are : DUKE OF MILAN, Father to Silvia. LAUNCE, Servant to Proteus.
PANTHINO, Servant to Antonio. the Two Gentlemen. PROTEUS,
Host, where Julia lodges. ANTONIO, Father to Proteus.
OUTLAWS with Valentine. THURIO, a Foolish Rival to Dal.
JULIA, beloved of Proteus. entine.
SILVIA, beloved of Valentine. EGLAMOUR, Agent for Silvia in LUCETTA, Waiting-woman to Julia.
SPEED, Servant to Valentine.
Servants, Musicians, &c. Scene.-In Verona; in Milan; and in a Forest near Milan.
• The Story of the Shepherdess Felismena. b The following is the only record of this play: 1584: “The History of Felix and Philiomena, shewed and enacted before her highnes by her Mats servaunts on the sondaie nexte after newyeares daie, at night at Greenwiche." "0. R. Protheus-(so printed throughout the comedy).
The Comedy opens, on a Park in the City of Verona,a with a conversation between two Gentlemen,- Valentine, a mocker at the power of Cupid, and Proteus, a martyr to his influence. Valentine has resolved to try his fortune at the Emperor's Court, in spite of the objections of his friend : Val. 'Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus :
'Home-keeping youth have ever homely 'wits.
Even as 'I would, ... when I to love begin.
If ever 'danger do environ thee,
For I will be thy 'beadsman,o Valentine.
Of love, where scorn is bought with 'groans; coy looks,
Or else a wit by folly 'overthrown.°
And he that is so 'yoke-led by a fool,
Expects my coming—there to see me 'shipped.
At Milan,5k let me hear from thee, by letters,
& a city of Venetia, in northern Italy, on the Adige. b the chief city of Lombardy, in northern Italy, on the Olona. cone engaged in prayer for another. din whatsoever way. O R. vanquished. fstatement. & condition. 10. R. yokéd. i devotee,
worshipper. j place of safety for a ship; auchorage. ko. R. to Millaine.
Betideth here in absence of thy friend ;
And 'I likewise will visit thee with 'mine. Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan ! Val. As much to you at 'home! and so farewell. Exit
Valentine goes away, and Proteus is alone.
'He leaves his friends, to dignify them more;
thought! Proteus had previously employed Valentine's Servant, Speed, to carry a letter to the Lady Julia, and he is now awaiting her reply. At last Speed enters : Speed. Sir Proteus, save you! Saw you my master ? 1 Pro. But now he parted hence, to embark for Milan. Speed. Twenty-to-one then, he is shipped 'already ;
And I have played the 'sheep in losing him. Pro. Indeed, a sheep doth very often stray,
An if the shepherd be awhile 'away. Speed. You conclude, that my master 'is a shepherd then,
and I a sheep ?--Nay, that I can deny, by a 'circum
stance. Pro. It shall go hard but I 'll 'prove it, by another. Speed. The 'shepherd seeks the 'sheep, and not the sheep
the shepherd; but 'I seek my 'master, and my master
seeks not 'me: therefore, I am 'no sheep. Pro. The sheep, for 'fodder, follow the shepherd; the
'shepherd, for food, follows not the sheep: thou, for 'wages, followest thy master; thy master, for wages, ,
follows not 'thee: therefore, thou 'art a sheep. Speed. Such another proof will make me cry "baa." Pro. But (dost thou hear?) gav'st thou my letter to Julia ? Speed. Ay, sir : I, (a losto mutton,) gave your letter to'her,
(a 'lacedo mutton;) and she, (a laced mutton,) gave
'me, (a lost mutton,) 'nothing for my labour. Pro. Come, come; open the matter in 'brief; what 'said
10. R. loue.
•Speed being called a sheep that had lost his master, Dow calls himself “a lost mutton,' and the young lady "a laced mutton”; that is,
(a showily bodiced girl).
Speed. Open your 'purse,--that the money, 'and the matter,
may be both at once delivered. Pro. Well, sir, here is for your pains. [Gorex] 'What said
she? Speed. Truly, sir, I think you 'll hardly 'win her. Pro. Why? Couldst thou preceive so 'much from her ? Speed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at 'all from her ; no,
not so much as a 'ducatfor delivering your letter. Pro. What! said she 'nothing? Speed. No, not so much as—“Take this for thy pains."
To testify your bounty, I thank you; you have 'testerned me: in requital whereof, .. henceforth carry your letters 'yourself. And 'so, sir, I'll commend
you to my master. Pro. Go, go! be gone,—to save your ship from wreck ;o
Which cannot perish, having 'thee aboard,
We overhear now a garden colloquy of the fair Julia with her Waiting-maid. Jul. But say, Lucetta, now we are alone,
Wouldst thou then 'counsel me to fall in love? Irc. Ay, madam; so you 'stumble not unheedfully. Jul. Of all the fair resort of gentlemen,
That every day with parle' encounter me,
In thy opinion, which is 'worthiest love?
According to my shallow simple skill.
But, were I you, 'he never should be mine.
, Should censure thus on 'lovely 'gentlemen. ^ a coin struck by a duke: in Venice, there were two ducats; the gold, worth about 9 sh.; and the silver 38. 3 d. b given me a tester, (sixpence). d The old proverb says: “He that is born to be hanged will never be drowned." e letter-carrier. f conversation (love-speeches). & surpassing, exceedingly great. han insignificant person.
i deliver an unfavorable opinion.
• O. R. wrack.