William Shakespeare: The Critical Heritage - Vol. 6

By Brian Vickers | Go to book overview

259.

George Steevens, on the alterations of Shakespeare

1779

From ‘Observations on the plays altered from Shakespeare’, in the St. James’s Chronicle, no. 2809 (13-16 March 1779). Steevens’s authorship is recorded by Malone in his collection of Shakespeariana in the Bodleian Library.


Witmore. Alterations, Sir!
Marplay. Yes, Sir, Alterations.—I will maintain it, let a Play be
never so good, without Alteration it will do nothing.

Fielding’s Author’s Farce.

From a Catalogue annexed to the last Edition of Shakespeare it appears that only Six of his Plays have escaped the Ravages of critical Temerity, or theatrical Presumption. They have suffered equally under the Hands of the Learned and the Ignorant, the Academick and the Player*. Those who have succeeded best in their Attempts have omitted many Beauties which they could not torture to their own Designs. Where the Drama has been contracted, the Catastrophe has been unnaturally hastened. Where

* Mr. Hawkins has entirely banished the Queen and lachimo from his altered Cymbeline,1 and has almost annihilated the Character of Posthumus, who is not permitted to appear till the Middle of the-fourth Act.—Mr. Cibber, in his King John,2 bestows the warlike Propositions of the Bastard on Lady Constance; and puts the flowery and descriptive Lines of a Chorus to King Henry V. into the Mouth of King Richard III, who is preparing with Anxiety for a Battle on which his Crown and Life depended.

The whole Progress of Leontes’ Jealousy is struck out of the Winter’s Tale,3 as it is at present altered and abridged. The original Romeo is said by his Confessor to have deserted Rosaline and engaged in a fresh Amour. As there was no Crime in quitting the Service of a hard-hearted Mistress, I am too dull to perceive the Necessity of this Variation from the original Play.

Othello is not permitted on the Stage to be effectually wrought by the Scenes in which he listens to the Conversation of Iago with Cassio, and is witness to lago’s Attempt on his Lieutenant’s Life: And yet at last is Othello represented as ‘perplexed in the Extreme.’

1 See Vol. 4, No. 175.

2 See Vol. 3, No. 102.

3 See Vol. 4, No. 150.

-204-

Notes for this page

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this page

Cited page

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited page

Bookmark this page
William Shakespeare: The Critical Heritage - Vol. 6
Table of contents

Table of contents

Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this book

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this book
  • Bookmarks
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
/ 650

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.