ISBN-10: 0812969421

ISBN-13: 9780812969429

Edition: N/A

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“Golden lads and girls all must,As chimney-sweepers, come to dust.”—Cymbeline Eminent Shakespearean scholars Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen provide a fresh new edition of this classic tragedy in which nothing is as it seems. THIS VOLUME ALSO INCLUDES MORE THAN A HUNDRED PAGES OF EXCLUSIVE FEATURES: • an original Introduction to Cymbeline• incisive scene-by-scene synopsis and analysis with vital facts about the work• commentary on past and current productions based on interviews with leading directors, actors, and designers• photographs of key RSC productions• an overview of Shakespeare’s theatrical career and chronology of his plays Ideal for students, theater professionals, and general readers, these modern and accessible editions from the Royal Shakespeare Company set a new standard in Shakespearean literature for the twenty-first century.
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Book details

List price: $9.00
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Publication date: 9/13/2011
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 256
Size: 5.25" wide x 8.00" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.418
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.

Jonathan Bate was born June 26, 1958. He is a British biographer, broadcaster, and leading Shakespeare scholar. He studied at Sevenoaks School, the University of Cambridge, and Harvard University. At Cambridge, he was a Fellow of Trinity Hall. While studying at Harvard, he held a Harness Fellowship. Bate is a professor of Shakespeare and Renaissance Literature at the University of Warwick. He was previously King Alfred Professor of English Literature at the University of Liverpool. He has also lectured at various universities in the United States. Bate is a Fellow of the British Academy and the Royal Society of Literature. Bate lives near Stratford-upon-Avon and is married to author and biography, Paula Byrne. They have three children.

Act 1 Scene 1 running scene 1 Enter two Gentlemen
FIRST GENTLEMAN??You do not meet a man but frowns. Our bloods No more obey the heavens than our courtiers Still seem as does the king.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??But what's the matter?
FIRST GENTLEMAN??His daughter, and the heir of's kingdom, whom He purposed to his wife's sole son - a widow That late he married - hath referred herself Unto a poor but worthy gentleman. She's wedded, Her husband banished, she imprisoned, all Is outward sorrow, though I think the king Be touched at very heart.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??None but the king?
FIRST GENTLEMAN??He that hath lost her too: so is the queen, That most desired the match. But not a courtier, Although they wear their faces to the bent Of the king's looks, hath a heart that is not Glad at the thing they scowl at.
FIRST GENTLEMAN??He that hath missed the princess is a thing Too bad for bad report: and he that hath her - I mean, that married her, alack, good man, And therefore banished - is a creature such As, to seek through the regions of the earth For one his like, there would be something failing In him that should compare. I do not think So fair an outward and such stuff within Endows a man but he.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??You speak him far.
FIRST GENTLEMAN??I do extend, sir, within himself, Crush him together rather than unfold His measure duly.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??What's his name and birth?
FIRST GENTLEMAN??I cannot delve him to the root: his father Was called Sicilius, who did join his honour Against the Romans with Cassibelan, But had his titles by Tenantius whom He served with glory and admired success: So gained the sur-addition Leonatus.
And had, besides this gentleman in question, Two other sons, who in the wars o'th'time Died with their swords in hand. For which their father, Then old and fond of issue, took such sorrow That he quit being, and his gentle lady, Big of this gentleman, our theme, deceased As he was born. The king he takes the babe To his protection, calls him Posthumus Leonatus, Breeds him, and makes him of his bedchamber, Puts to him all the learnings that his time Could make him the receiver of, which he took As we do air, fast as 'twas ministered, And in's spring became a harvest: lived in court - Which rare it is to do - most praised, most loved: A sample to the youngest, to th'more mature A glass that feated them, and to the graver, A child that guided dotards. To his mistress, For whom he now is banished, her own price Proclaims how she esteemed him; and his virtue By her election may be truly read, What kind of man he is.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??I honour him even out of your report.
But pray you tell me, is she sole child to th'king?
FIRST GENTLEMAN??His only child.
He had two sons - if this be worth your hearing, Mark it - the eldest of them at three years old, I'th'swathing clothes the other, from their nursery Were stol'n, and to this hour no guess in knowledge Which way they went.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??How long is this ago?
FIRST GENTLEMAN??Some twenty years.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??That a king's children should be so conveyed, So slackly guarded, and the search so slow That could not trace them.
FIRST GENTLEMAN??Howsoe'er 'tis strange, Or that the negligence may well be laughed at, Yet is it true, sir.
SECOND GENTLEMAN??I do well believe you.
FIRST GENTLEMAN??We must forbear. Here comes the gentleman, The queen and princess. Exeunt Enter the Queen, Posthumus and Innogen QUEEN No, be assured you shall not find me, daughter, After the slander of most stepmothers, Evil-eyed unto you. You're my prisoner, but Your jailer shall deliver you the keys That lock up your restraint. For you, Posthumus, So soon as I can win th'offended king, I will be known your advocate: marry, yet The fire of rage is in him, and 'twere good You leaned unto his sentence, with what patience Your wisdom may inform you.
POSTHUMUS Please your highness, I will from hence today.
QUEEN You know the peril.
I'll fetch a turn about the garden, pitying The pangs of barred affections, though the king Hath charged you should not speak together. Exit INNOGEN O dissembling courtesy! How fine this tyrant Can tickle where she wounds! My dearest husband, I something fear my father's wrath, but nothing - Always reserved my holy duty - what His rage can do on me. You must be gone, And I shall here abide the hourly shot Of angry eyes: not comforted to live, But that there is this jewel in the world That I may see again.
POSTHUMUS My queen, my mistress: O lady, weep no more, lest I give cause To be suspected of more tenderness Than doth become a man. I will remain The loyal'st husband that did e'er plight troth.
My residence in Rome, at one Philario's, Who to my father was a friend, to me Known but by letter: thither write, my queen, And with mine eyes I'll drink the words you send, Though ink be made of gall.
Enter Queen QUEEN Be brief, I pray you: If the king come, I shall incur I know not How much of his displeasure.- Yet I'll move him Aside To walk this way: I never do him wrong, But he does buy my injuries to be friends: Pays dear for my offences. [Exit] POSTHUMUS Should we be taking leave As long a term as yet we have to live, The loathness to depart would grow. Adieu.
INNOGEN Nay, stay a little: Were you but riding forth to air yourself, Such parting were too petty. Look here, love, This diamond was my mother's; take it, heart, Gives a ring But keep it till you woo another wife, When Innogen is dead.
POSTHUMUS How, how? Another? You gentle gods, give me but this I have, And cere up my embracements from a next With bonds of death. Remain, remain thou here Puts on the ring While sense can keep it on: and sweetest, fairest, As I my poor self did exchange for you To your so infinite loss, so in our trifles I still win of you. For my sake wear this, It is a manacle of love. I'll place it Upon this fairest prisoner. Puts a bracelet on her arm INNOGEN O, the gods! When shall we see again? Enter Cymbeline and Lords POSTHUMUS Alack, the king! CYMBELINE Thou basest thing, avoid hence, from my sight: If after this command thou fraught the court With thy unworthiness, thou diest. Away, Thou'rt poison to my blood.
POSTHUMUS The gods protect you, And bless the good remainders of the court: I am gone. Exit INNOGEN There cannot be a pinch in death More sharp than this is.
CYMBELINE O disloyal thing, That shouldst repair my youth, thou heap'st A year's age on me.
INNOGEN I beseech you, sir, Harm not yourself with your vexation, I am senseless of your wrath; a touch more rare Subdues all pangs, all fears.
CYMBELINE Past grace? Obedience? INNOGEN Past hope and in despair: that way past grace.
CYMBELINE That mightst have had the sole son of my queen.
INNOGEN O, blest that I might not: I chose an eagle, And did avoid a puttock.
CYMBELINE Thou took'st a beggar, wouldst have made my throne A seat for baseness.
INNOGEN No, I rather added a lustre to it.
CYMBELINE O thou vile one! INNOGEN Sir, It is your fault that I have loved Posthumus: You bred him as my playfellow, and he is A man worth any woman: overbuys me Almost the sum he pays.
CYMBELINE What? Art thou mad? INNOGEN Almost, sir: heaven restore me! Would I were A neatherd's daughter, and my Leonatus Our neighbour shepherd's son.
Enter Queen CYMBELINE Thou foolish thing!- They were again together: you have done To Queen Not after our command.- Away with her, And pen her up.
QUEEN Beseech your patience: peace, Dear lady daughter, peace. Sweet sovereign, Leave us to ourselves, and make yourself some comfort Out of your best advice.
CYMBELINE Nay, let her languish A drop of blood a day, and being aged, Die of this folly. Exeunt [Cymbeline and Lords] Enter Pisanio QUEEN Fie, you must give way.
Here is your servant.- How now, sir? What news? PISANIO My lord your son drew on my master.
QUEEN Ha? No harm I trust is done? PISANIO There might have been, But that my master rather played than fought, And had no help of anger: they were parted By gentlemen at hand.
QUEEN I am very glad on't.
INNOGEN Your son's my father's friend, he takes his part To draw upon an exile.- O brave sir!- I would they were in Afric both together, Myself by with a needle, that I might prick The goer-back.-Why came you from your master? PISANIO On his command: he would not suffer me To bring him to the haven: left these notes Of what commands I should be subject to, When't pleased you to employ me.
QUEEN This hath been Your faithful servant: I dare lay mine honour He will remain so.
PISANIO I humbly thank your highness.
QUEEN Pray walk awhile. To Innogen INNOGEN About some half hour hence, pray you speak with me. To Pisanio You shall, at least, go see my lord aboard.
For this time leave me. Exeunt Act 1 Scene 2 running scene 1 continues Enter Cloten and two Lords FIRST LORD Sir, I would advise you to shift a shirt; the violence of action hath made you reek as a sacrifice: where air comes out, air comes in: there's none abroad so wholesome as that you vent.
CLOTEN If my shirt were bloody, then to shift it. Have I hurt him? SECOND LORD??No, faith: not so much as his patience. Aside FIRST LORD Hurt him? His body's a passable carcass if he be not hurt. It is a thoroughfare for steel if it be not hurt.
SECOND LORD??His steel was in debt, it went o'th'backside the town. Aside CLOTEN The villain would not stand me.
SECOND LORD??No, but he fled forward still, toward your face. Aside FIRST LORD Stand you? You have land enough of your own: but he added to your having, gave you some ground.
SECOND LORD??As many inches as you have oceans. Puppies! Aside CLOTEN I would they had not come between us.
SECOND LORD??So would I, till you had measured how long a fool you were upon the ground. Aside CLOTEN And that she should love this fellow, and refuse me! SECOND LORD??If it be a sin to make a true election, she is damned. Aside FIRST LORD Sir, as I told you always: her beauty and her brain go not together. She's a good sign, but I have seen small reflection of her wit.
SECOND LORD??She shines not upon fools, lest the reflection should hurt her. Aside CLOTEN Come, I'll to my chamber: would there had been some hurt done.
SECOND LORD??I wish not so, unless it had been the fall of an ass, which is no great hurt. Aside CLOTEN You'll go with us? FIRST LORD I'll attend your lordship.
CLOTEN Nay, come, let's go together.
SECOND LORD??Well, my lord. Exeunt Act 1 Scene 3 running scene 1 continues Enter Innogen and Pisanio INNOGEN I would thou grew'st unto the shores o'th'haven, And questioned'st every sail: if he should write, And I not have it, 'twere a paper lost, As offered mercy is. What was the last That he spake to thee? PISANIO It was his queen, his queen.
INNOGEN Then waved his handkerchief? PISANIO And kissed it, madam.
INNOGEN Senseless linen, happier therein than I: And that was all? PISANIO No, madam: for so long As he could make me with this eye, or ear, Distinguish him from others, he did keep The deck, with glove, or hat, or handkerchief, Still waving, as the fits and stirs of's mind Could best express how slow his soul sailed on, How swift his ship.
INNOGEN Thou shouldst have made him As little as a crow, or less, ere left To after-eye him.
PISANIO Madam, so I did.
INNOGEN I would have broke mine eyestrings, cracked them, but To look upon him, till the diminution Of space had pointed him sharp as my needle: Nay, followed him, till he had melted from The smallness of a gnat to air: and then Have turned mine eye, and wept. But, good Pisanio, When shall we hear from him? PISANIO Be assured, madam, With his next vantage.
INNOGEN I did not take my leave of him, but had Most pretty things to say: ere I could tell him How I would think on him at certain hours, Such thoughts and such: or I could make him swear The shes of Italy should not betray Mine interest and his honour: or have charged him, At the sixth hour of morn, at noon, at midnight, T'encounter me with orisons, for then I am in heaven for him: or ere I could Give him that parting kiss, which I had set Betwixt two charming words, comes in my father, And like the tyrannous breathing of the north, Shakes all our buds from growing.
Enter a Lady LADY The queen, madam, Desires your highness' company.
INNOGEN Those things I bid you do, get them dispatched.
I will attend the queen.
PISANIO Madam, I shall. Exeunt Act 1 Scene 4 running scene 2 Enter Philario, Iachimo, a Frenchman, a Dutchman and a Spaniard IACHIMO Believe it, sir, I have seen him in Britain; he was then of a crescent note, expected to prove so worthy as since he hath been allowed the name of. But I could then have looked on him without the help of admiration, though the catalogue of his endowments had been tabled by his side and I to peruse him by items.
PHILARIO You speak of him when he was less furnished than now he is with that which makes him both without and within.
FRENCHMAN I have seen him in France: we had very many there could behold the sun with as firm eyes as he.
IACHIMO This matter of marrying his king's daughter, wherein he must be weighed rather by her value than his own, words him, I doubt not, a great deal from the matter.
FRENCHMAN And then his banishment.
IACHIMO Ay, and the approbation of those that weep this lamentable divorce under her colours are wonderfully to extend him, be it but to fortify her judgement, which else an easy battery might lay flat, for taking a beggar without less quality. But how comes it he is to sojourn with you? How creeps acquaintance? PHILARIO His father and I were soldiers together, to whom I have been often bound for no less than my life.
Enter Posthumus Here comes the Briton. Let him be so entertained amongst you as suits with gentlemen of your knowing to a stranger of his quality. I beseech you all be better known to this gentleman, whom I commend to you as a noble friend of mine. How worthy he is I will leave to appear hereafter, rather than story him in his own hearing.
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