Elizabethan Hamlet

Elizabethan Hamlet

by John Corbin



Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780404017262
Publisher: AMS Press, Inc.
Publication date: 01/28/1970
Pages: 91
Product dimensions: 6.50(w) x 1.50(h) x 9.50(d)

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Author's Note The first conception of the present essay was that it should be a general study of the sources of Hamlet, with a view to clearing up, if possible, some of the literary problems of Shakspere's play. I undertook the work in the winter of 18923, at Harvard University, as a matter of form in taking the degree of Master of Arts with Honours in English Literature.. While writing the essay I was attending Aektiowledg- Professor Barrett Wendell's lectures on Shakspere, ments. published in 1894 by Charles Scribner's Sons, New York, under the title of ' William Shakspere, a Study in Elizabethan Literature.' The idea thar the tragic Edgar in Lear is none other than the old comic Tom of Bedlam suggested that Hamlet's assumed insanity might also have had a comic aspect, at least in the pre-Shaksperean versions of the story. This idea came to me so late that the new essay it necessitated was hurried and undigested: yet it was one of the two successful theses that year in the competition for the Sohier Modern-Literature prize. During the year following it was impossible to complete my researches; but I have lately been able todo so with the aid of Malone's invaluable library, now in the Bodleian. Here, at the last moment, I came across Sarrazin's little book ' Thomas Kyd und sein Kreis,' the thoroughness and brilliancy of which need no praise of mine. The last chapter of the book gives a clear and admirable exposition of the relationship between the first quarto Hamlet and Kyd's old tragedy of blood, ' Der ur-Hamlet;' and, by showing that all which is least according to Shakspere's taste proceeded from Kyd, for the first time exonerates Shak- spere from the bizarre cruelty ofmany of Hamlet's deeds. My own statement of this point, however, I have decided to let stand, much t...

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