Particular Saints: Shakespeare's Four Antonios, Their Contexts, and Their Plays

University of Delaware Press, 1997 - 250 páginas
Why do characters named Antonio proliferate on the English Renaissance stage? Why are they so often paired with other characters named Sebastian? And more significantly, why are they repeatedly characterized by Shakespeare and his contemporaries as fools for love? Particular Saints draws on church history, art history, and theater history to address these questions by illustrating that Renaissance stage Antonios are a type, representing a tradition familiar to early modern audiences and exploited by Shakespeare in portraying his four major characters named Antonio. Such characters ultimately derive from the rich medieval iconography and hagiography of Saint Anthony of Egypt. How this knowledge reinforms our late-twentieth-century understanding of the four plays in question is addressed in separate chapters that range widely across each work: The Merchant of Venice, Twelfth Night, Antony and Cleopatra, and The Tempest.

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Antonio Viola and Epiphany in Twelfth
Antony Cleopatra and Game
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