Romeo and Juliet Texts and Contexts

ISBN-10: 0312191928

ISBN-13: 9780312191924

Edition: 2003

Authors: William Shakespeare, Dympna Callaghan

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This edition of Shakespeare’sRomeo and Julietreprints the Bevington edition of the play accompanied by six sets of thematically arranged primary documents and illustrations designed to fit many different approaches to Shakespeare’s play and the early modern culture out of which the play emerges. The texts include travel accounts, poetry, excerpts from early modern fencing manuals, royal proclamations and statutes, tables and prognostications from an early modern almanac, and orders for religious ceremonies from The Book of Common Prayer. Unique to this edition, too, is the inclusion of numerous unpublished manuscript letters of the Bagot family and some poignantly moving passages from the diary of Lady Anne Clifford. The documents contextualize the social relationships among men in Shakespeare’s time, violence in Elizabethan society, views of love and the Petrarchan paradigm, spiritual life, family in Elizabethan society, and ideas about astrology, medicine, and death.
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Book details

List price: $17.99
Copyright year: 2003
Publisher: Bedford/Saint Martin's
Publication date: 4/28/2003
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 475
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 0.75" tall
Weight: 1.100
Language: English

William Shakespeare, 1564 - 1616 Although there are many myths and mysteries surrounding William Shakespeare, a great deal is actually known about his life. He was born in Stratford-Upon-Avon, son of John Shakespeare, a prosperous merchant and local politician and Mary Arden, who had the wealth to send their oldest son to Stratford Grammar School. At 18, Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway, the 27-year-old daughter of a local farmer, and they had their first daughter six months later. He probably developed an interest in theatre by watching plays performed by traveling players in Stratford while still in his youth. Some time before 1592, he left his family to take up residence in London, where he began acting and writing plays and poetry. By 1594 Shakespeare had become a member and part owner of an acting company called The Lord Chamberlain's Men, where he soon became the company's principal playwright. His plays enjoyed great popularity and high critical acclaim in the newly built Globe Theatre. It was through his popularity that the troupe gained the attention of the new king, James I, who appointed them the King's Players in 1603. Before retiring to Stratford in 1613, after the Globe burned down, he wrote more than three dozen plays (that we are sure of) and more than 150 sonnets. He was celebrated by Ben Jonson, one of the leading playwrights of the day, as a writer who would be "not for an age, but for all time," a prediction that has proved to be true. Today, Shakespeare towers over all other English writers and has few rivals in any language. His genius and creativity continue to astound scholars, and his plays continue to delight audiences. Many have served as the basis for operas, ballets, musical compositions, and films. While Jonson and other writers labored over their plays, Shakespeare seems to have had the ability to turn out work of exceptionally high caliber at an amazing speed. At the height of his career, he wrote an average of two plays a year as well as dozens of poems, songs, and possibly even verses for tombstones and heraldic shields, all while he continued to act in the plays performed by the Lord Chamberlain's Men. This staggering output is even more impressive when one considers its variety. Except for the English history plays, he never wrote the same kind of play twice. He seems to have had a good deal of fun in trying his hand at every kind of play. Shakespeare wrote 154 sonnets, all published on 1609, most of which were dedicated to his patron Henry Wriothsley, The Earl of Southhampton. He also wrote 13 comedies, 13 histories, 6 tragedies, and 4 tragecomedies. He died at Stratford-upon-Avon April 23, 1616, and was buried two days later on the grounds of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford. His cause of death was unknown, but it is surmised that he knew he was dying.

About the series
About this volume
List of illustrations
William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet
Cultural contexts
The idea of Italy for Shakespeare's English audience
From His ten years travel
From The schoolmaster
From The unfortunate traveler, or the life of Jack Wilton
From The history of Italy
From A discovery of the great subtlety and wonderful wisdom of the Italians
From A description of the author's journey from Trento to London
Between men
Relationships between men
From The affectionate shepherd
From His practice
From Paradoxes of defense
Keeping the peace
Proclamation enforcing statutes of apparel
Proclamation prohibiting unlawful assembly under martial law
Proclamation enforcing earlier proclamation against handguns
Proclamation prohibiting the publishing of any reports or writing of duels
Report to Lord Burghley
Loving and marrying
From A work worth the reading
From A Bartholomew fairing for parents
From Conjugal counsel : or, seasonable advice, both to unmarried, and married persons
From A treatise of spousals
Letter to Sir George More
From The canzoniere
Sonnet 9
Sonnet 130
Solemnization of matrimony
Family life
A prayer of children for their parents
Correspondence of the Bagot family
Letter to Richard Broughton
Letter to Richard Bagot esquire
Letter to Richard Bagot
Letter to Henry Skipwith
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to an unidentified man
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Lewes Bagot
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Henry Skipwith
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Walter Bagot
Letter to Richard Bagot
Letter to Christopher Brooke
Letter to Richard Bagot
From The countess of Lincoln's nursery
From A preparative to marriage
From The diary of the Lady Anne Clifford
From Delights for ladies to adorn their persons, tables, closets, and distillatories
From The life of the most holy father St. Francis
From Acts and monuments
From The faerie queene
Death and the stars
Love and death
From Erotomania
From An act concerning physicians and Royal College of Physicians of London, from Pharmacopoeia Londinensis
From Pharmacopoeia Londinensis
A prayer to be said at our going into bed and a prayer when we be ready to sleep
Funerals and monuments
The order for the burial of the dead
Proclamation prohibiting destruction of church monuments
From An homily against apparel of idolatry and superfluous decking of churches
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