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LECTURE I THE SUBSTANCE OF SHAKESPEAREAN TRAGEDY The question we are to consider in this lecture may be stated in a variety of ways. We may put it thus: What is the substance of a Shakespearean tragedy, taken in abstraction both from its form and from the differences in point of substance between one tragedy and another? Or thus: What is the nature of the tragic aspect of life as represented by Shakespeare? What is the general fact shown now in... more...

ACT IV SCENE I.   Cyprus.  Before the Castle. [Enter Othello and Iago.] IAGOWill you think so?OTHELLO                              Think so, Iago?IAGO                     ... more...

ACT  V SCENE  I.   The Forest of Arden [Enter TOUCHSTONE and AUDREY.] TOUCHSTONEWe shall find a time, Audrey; patience, gentle Audrey.AUDREYFaith, the priest was good enough, for all the old gentleman's saying.TOUCHSTONEA most wicked Sir Oliver, Audrey, a most vile Martext. But, Audrey, there is a youth here in the forest lays claim to you.AUDREYAy, I know who 'tis: he hath no interest in me in the world: here comes... more...

ACT I. Scene I.—ELSINORE. A Platform before the Castle. Night. Francisco on his post. Enter to him Bernardo, L.H. Ber. Who's there? Fran. (R.) Nay, answer me: stand, and unfold yourself. Ber. Long live the king! Fran. Bernardo? Ber. He. Fran. You come most carefully upon your hour. Ber. 'Tis now struck twelve; get thee to bed, Francisco. Fran. For this relief much thanks: [Crosses to L.] 'tis bitter cold, And I am... more...

PREFACE A nice phrase: "A People's Theatre." But what about it? There's no such thing in existence as a People's Theatre: or even on the way to existence, as far as we can tell. The name is chosen, the baby isn't even begotten: nay, the would-be parents aren't married, nor yet courting. A People's Theatre. Note the indefinite article. It isn't The People's Theatre, but A People's Theatre. Not the theatre of Plebs, the proletariat, but the... more...


ACT I [Roadside with big stones, etc., on the right; low loose wall at back with gap near centre; at left, ruined doorway of church with bushes beside it. Martin Doul and Mary Doul grope in on left and pass over to stones on right, where they sit.] MARY DOUL. What place are we now, Martin Doul? MARTIN DOUL. Passing the gap. MARY DOUL — [raising her head.] — The length of that! Well, the sun's getting warm this day if it's late... more...

As will be seen later on, Pygmalion needs, not a preface, but a sequel, which I have supplied in its due place. The English have no respect for their language, and will not teach their children to speak it. They spell it so abominably that no man can teach himself what it sounds like. It is impossible for an Englishman to open his mouth without making some other Englishman hate or despise him. German and Spanish are accessible to foreigners:... more...

CHAPTER I EARLY CHURCH DRAMA ON THE CONTINENT The old Classical Drama of Greece and Rome died, surfeited with horror and uncleanness. Centuries rolled by, and then, when the Old Drama was no more remembered save by the scholarly few, there was born into the world the New Drama. By a curious circumstance its nurse was the same Christian Church that had thrust its predecessor into the grave. A man may dig his spade haphazard into the earth and... more...

Scene: A plantation of thin young trees, in a misty and rainy twilight; some woodland blossom showing the patches on the earth between the stems. The Stranger is discovered, a cloaked figure with a pointed hood. His costume might belong to modern or any other time, and the conical hood is so drawn over the head that little can be seen of the face. A distant voice, a woman's, is heard, half-singing, half-chanting, unintelligible words. The... more...

ACT  IV SCENE  I.  London.  Before the Tower [Enter, on one side, QUEEN ELIZABETH, DUCHESS of YORK, and MARQUIS of DORSET; on the other, ANNE DUCHESS of GLOSTER, leading LADY MARGARET PLANTAGENET, CLARENCE's young daughter.] DUCHESSWho meets us here?—my niece Plantagenet,Led in the hand of her kind aunt of Gloster?Now, for my life, she's wandering to the Tower,On pure heart's love, to greet the tender... more...