Important points on william Shakespeare works and free pdf notes. UGC NET PGT English TGT English literature Notes.
Early comedies of Shakespeare
Love’s Labour’s Lost (printed 1598)
- No major source.Has elements of comedy of manners
- Pretensions are deflated.
Love conquers all.
- Unrealistic atmosphere of games and festive play.
- At the end, characters achieve maturity in the real world and the promise of future happiness.
- The King of Navarre and his three lords have sworn celibacy for 3 years.
- They fall in love with the princess of France and her attendant ladies
- Other major characters
- Don Adriano de Armado, a Spaniard, who uses extravagant language.
- The pedantic schoolteacher Holofernes .
- Dull the constable
- Costard the clown, who speaks the long Latin word.
- “honorificabilitudinitatibus” (“the state of being loaded with honours”)
- Play ends with the songs of the cuckoo and the owl .
- The play-within-the-play of the Nine Worthies occur here.
- Here the actors dress up as Muscovites (people from Moscow)
This play has been called Mozartian (Mozart-like).
- Mozart also created operatic comedies of human frailty.
- Mixed high and low elements
Offered lyrical leaps of fancy
- Influence of Commedia dell Arte
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The Two Gentlemen of Verona 1594 perfomed and 1623 printed
- Two major sources
- Story of Titus and Gisippus from Boccaccio’s Decameron .
- Portuguese author Jorge de Montemayor’s Spanish work Diana Enamorade.
- Theme of male friendship disturbed by sexual jealousy as in Lyly’s Euphues .
- Based on two literary tradition
“Friendship literature” of the Middle Ages.
- The romantic narrative.
- Valentine and Proteus are friends.
- Proteus loves Julia.
- Valentine goes to Milan and falls in love with Silvia.
- Proteus also sets off on his travels and in Milan is captivated by Silvia.
- Julia comes to Milan in disguise.
- The betrayer Proteus finally repents.
Other major characters
- Lance, the clownish servant of Proteus and his dog Crab
The Comedy of Errors (perf. in 1594)
- Conforms to the three unities.Principal source is Plautus’s The Menaechmi
- Also influenced by
- The medieval Gesta Romanorum (later source for The Merchant of Venice).
- Confessio Amantis (later source for Pericles)
- The essential human condition.
- The web of domestic and political relationships.
- Situation of women in Elizabethan society.
- Redeeming power of love
- A short farceThe places Syracuse and Ephesus are enemies.
- Egeon, an old Syracusan merchant, is arrested in Ephesus.
- One of his twin sons (both named Antipholus, attended by twin slaves named Dromio) is separated and lives in Ephesus.
- So does his wife Emilia, who is now an Abbess.
- After much comedy resulting from mistaken identity, the family is re-united.
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