A Handbook to the Works of William Shakespeare
by Morton Luce (9780217424363)

A Handbook to the Works of William Shakespeare
Morton Luce
Release Date: 10 December 0140
Format: Paperback
Pages: 144
Category: Shakespeare
ISBN: 9780217424363
ISBN-10: 0217424368

Purchase of this book includes free trial access to www.million-books.com where you can read more than a million books for free. This is an OCR edition with typos. Excerpt from book: CHAPTER III BIOGRAPHICAL (HISTORY AND TRADITION) " O HAKESPEARE," says Dryden, "was the man who of all modern, and perhaps ancient poets, had the largest and most comprehensive soul." Is this one reason why we know so little of the body'?the mere outward life of the man? So little indeed, that a biography of Shakespeare should always begin with a statement of the half dozen facts that form its meagre foundations. We may give these meagre facts in the words of Steevens: "All that is known with any degree of certainty concerning Shakespeare is?that he was born at Stratford-upon-Avon?married and had children there? went to London, where he commenced actor, and wrote poems and plays?returned to Stratford, made his will, died and was buried." But this brief summary of Steevens should be followed by at least one important reflection; the days of Shakespeare were not the days that deal in ana; they dismissed Marlowe with still less care or courtesy; they forgot the very birthdays of Peele and Greene, of Chapman, Lodge, Nash, Kyd; and when I pointed to the meagre facts of Shakespeare's life, I meant rather a meagreness in comparison with the magnitude of his work; for his period ofauthorship extended over twenty years and produced nearly twice that number of works, nine tenths of which were masterpieces of their kind. This period we will now survey briefly; but first we must take a yet briefer glance at the thirty years preceding. 1 May we conjecture that if Shakespeare had taken a more conscious interest in his art?his creations?himself?we should have heard more about him?and possibly have been none the better for it? We are accustomed to regard with a strange reverence the mere scenes among which some great man has lived, the roof that sheltered him, the fields through w...

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