Monday, April 6, 2009

1500 to 1599: Love's Labour's Lost to Richard II

Shakespeare. British. 1594. Play. Love’s Labour’s Lost. Males eschew women to study. Four ladies tempt them. They capitulate, but the ladies must leave and exact penances.

Shakespeare. British. 1595. Play. The Life and Death of King John. Efforts of weak, despicable King John to fend off the royal claims of Arthur, duke of Brittany. He alienates the nobility. He runs afoul of the Pope. He is poisoned, and his son, Henry III, becomes king.

Edmund Spenser. British. 1595. Poetry. Epithalamion. (Celebrate marriage). Written to celebrate his marriage. His highest poetic achievement.

Shakespeare. British. 1595. Play. The Merchant of Venice. Shylock can have his pound of flesh, but he cannot take any blood with it. Portia, Bassanio and Antonio.

Shakespeare. British. 1595. Play. The Tragedy of Richard II. Richard II is murdered by Bolingbroke, who becomes Henry IV.

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