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Enric VIII (1612)

de William Shakespeare, John Fletcher

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The Oxford Shakespeare offers authoritative texts from leading scholars in editions designed to interpret and illuminate the plays for modern readers
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» Mira també 29 mencions

Anglès (16)  Suec (1)  Totes les llengües (17)
Es mostren 1-5 de 17 (següent | mostra-les totes)
The epitome of what an Arden edition should be. What a shame this came out so early, leaving so much for other editors to live up to!

The dense (200 page) introduction covers everything you expect - production history, composition history, placing the play within a social, cultural, political context, and textual analysis - and includes the expected amount of academic frou-frou (but we forgive those in an Arden, surely). But what really makes it sing is the editor's wonderfully knowing sense of narrative voice. He has his own passionate beliefs, but is happy to situate those within the 400-year history of bardolatry and Shakespearean criticism, thus giving the amateur reader a great overall understanding of the issues editors and academics face in working with these texts. It's the kind of edition that breathes new life into a play that is often ignored. ( )
  therebelprince | Nov 15, 2020 |
This is one of the later and less well known of the Bard's plays (am reading it in the aftermath of The Mirror and the Light), and was co-written with another dramatist, John Fletcher. It telescopes the events of over 10 years between the execution of Buckingham for alleged treason to the birth of Elizabeth, taking in the fall of Wolsey and the King's divorce from Katherine of Aragon. A decent play for anyone knowledgeable enough about the Tudors to spot the historical errors! The play is perhaps most famous for being performed at the time the original Globe theatre burned down in 1613 due to a cannon being set off. ( )
  john257hopper | Aug 22, 2020 |
Previously, things I've read covering the historically crucial events surrounding Henry VIII's divorce and subsequent break from the Catholic Church have focused on Wolsey, More, Cromwell and Henry himself, ignoring Katherine, whom Henry is dumping in favour of Anne Boleyn. This is different: Thomas More is conspicuous by his absence - he's not even name-dropped - and Katherine is very much front and centre of the middle part of the play.

Katherine and Wolsey are presented as Tragic figures: Katherine as undeserving victim, powerless but eloquent in her own, ultimately futile defence. Wolsey as worldly schemer for Rome and his own self-aggrandisement who ultimately repents, apparently sincerely and with great humility, when caught conspiring against the divorce and lining his own pockets from the national Treasury.

What of Henry? He reminds me of Julius Caesar; the instigator of the action but really not the dramatic lead. Intrigue, plots, chaos and death swirl around him but he remains mostly a cypher. He doesn't die half way through, like Caesar, of course. Instead he lives on to see Anne Boleyn betray his hopes by giving birth to a daughter.

That daughter is prophetically praised in the final scene; the baby that will become the legendary Virgin Queen of Shakespeare's day and save Britain from Spain, Rome, all and sundry...

How much of the Tudor idolatry was merely political expediency is open to question, given the extremely sympathetic treatment of Katherine, the fact that Shakespeare was brought up in a Catholic household and the lack of any unequivocal statement about Will's own religious leanings.

The play impresses more by way of the characterisation and eloquence of Wolsey and Katherine than it does as a coherent drama as a whole.

( )
  Arbieroo | Jul 17, 2020 |
I can't say that the writing is bad, per-se, more that the topic is unworthy except for being an obligatory propagandist piece to prop up the worthiness of the Anglican church versus the Catholics.

I'm sure no one is surprised on this count.

There's rather less of the real drama that surrounded the King the man and all his travails or misogyny surrounding his six wives or the interesting women surrounding this historic character, rather it's just the focus on the single quasi-divorce still under the Catholic eye and the fall of the Cardinal and the succession of our dear Elisabeth by her on-stage birth under the Anglican eye.

Does it read as a set piece? A vanity play? A yawn-worthy white-wash of the man the Queen's father? Um, yeah, yeah, it does. *sigh*

And here I'd hoped for a bit more drama more in line with the actual history. Alas. Not my favorite. By a long shot. ( )
  bradleyhorner | Jun 1, 2020 |
Henry VIII is the final play in the histories series. Although it’s frequently challenged as being written solely by Shakespeare, I'm accepting it as part of the canon. The histories begin, chronologically, with Richard II and take us all the way through the Wars of the Roses.

The plot covers the execution of Buckingham, the rise and fall of Cardinal Wolsey, the divorce of Henry VIII and Queen Katherine, his marriage to Anne Boleyn, the birth of Elizabeth, and more. The play itself is rarely produces and not well known, but pieces of it will be familiar to anyone who has read Wolf Hall or The Other Boleyn Girl.

There's a lot crammed into this one, but a few of the characters truly shine. Your heart breaks for the neglected Katherine. She’s tossed aside by her husband of 20 years when someone younger catches his eye. She has some fantastic moments when she challenges Cardinal Wolsey.

“Y’ are meek and humble-mouth’d,
You sign your place and calling, in full seeming, with meekness and humility;
but your heart is cramm’d with arrogance, spleen, and pride.”

Buckingham is also a sympathetic character with some great speeches. Overall the play doesn't flow as well as many of his others. It's too scattered, too many moving pieces, but it's still got some beautiful language.

“Yet I am richer than my base accusers,
That never knew what truth meant.”

“Heat not a furnace for your foe so hot
That it do singe yourself.”

“Love thyself last: cherish those hearts that hate thee;
Corruption wins not more than honesty.
Still in thy right hand carry gentle peace,
To silence envious tongues. Be just, and fear not:
Let all the ends thou aim'st at be thy country's,
Thy God's, and truth's.” ( )
  bookworm12 | Jan 29, 2019 |
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Nom de l'autorCàrrecTipus d'autorObra?Estat
Shakespeare, Williamautor primaritotes les edicionsconfirmat
Fletcher, Johnautor principaltotes les edicionsconfirmat
Berdan, John M.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Brooke, TuckerEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Foakes, R. A.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Gentleman, DavidDissenyador de la cobertaautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Hudson, Henry N.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Lamar, Virginia A.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Rolfe, William J.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Smith, D. NicholEditorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
Wright, Louis B.Editorautor secundarialgunes edicionsconfirmat
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I come no more to make you laugh: things now,
That bear a weighty and a serious brow,
Sad, high, and working, full of state and woe,
Such noble scenes as draw the eye to flow,
We now present.
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'Tis better to be lowly born,
And range with humble livers in content,
Than to be perked up in a glistering grief,
And wear a golden sorrow.
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This work is for the complete Henry VIII only. Do not combine this work with abridgements, adaptations or simplifications (such as "Shakespeare Made Easy"), Cliffs Notes or similar study guides, or anything else that does not contain the full text. Do not include any video recordings. Additionally, do not combine this with other plays.

A majority of Shakespeare scholars nowadays accept the theory that Henry VIII was written jointly by Shakespeare and John Fletcher, though many editions of the play still credit Shakespeare as the sole author.
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