Shakespeare Studies, Historical and Comparative in Method

Shakespeare Studies, Historical and Comparative in Method

Shakespeare Studies, Historical and Comparative in Method

Shakespeare Studies, Historical and Comparative in Method

Excerpt

This is not quite the book that I have for years had it in mind to write as I penned my articles and monographs on Shakespeare and the Elizabethan drama. I had hoped, with these as a nucleus, to develop a rounded and reasoned whole. But as time went on and material accumulated, with no end yet in sight, I came to the conclusion that if ever I was to write a book at all it must be, as indeed this one is, a collection of studies or essays, and no more.

With those who may have troubled to read some of these as they were first published, it is only fair that I should be more explicit. I have here included two new studies (chapters iii and iv) and six which have already appeared in print, though these last have been entirely recast -- much altered and even more enlarged. I have, however (though sometimes quoting from them), made no attempt to incorporate matter from articles such as my Anachronism in Shakespeare Criticism, Recent Hamlet Criticism, and Drama Old and New, or from my monographs on Hamlet and Othello. In particular I have avoided reproducing purely technical discussions, on the one hand, such as my article on Hamlet, Marston, and the Malcontent Type, and rather popular ones, on the other, such as my introductions to Titus Andronicus and Henry V. In short, I have here put together those of my writings which are least easily accessible, or are of most general interest, or seem, because of the fresh material in my hands, most worth revision. To each of the chapters not entirely new I have appended the date of its first appearance.

My indebtedness to previous writers I have endeavoured adequately to indicate. This, as they themselves would admit, is not always so simple as it seems. Sometimes one's . . .

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