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View Poll Results: What genre of Shakespeares plays do you like?

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  • Comedies: Measure for measure, The Tempest etc

    8 34.78%
  • Histories: Henry V, Richard III, King John etc

    4 17.39%
  • Tragedies: Romeo and Juliet, King Lear etc

    13 56.52%
  • Sonnets and Peoms: Venus and Adonis, The Pheonix and the Turtle Etc

    5 21.74%
  • I have never read Shakespeare

    0 0%
  • I don't like Shakespeare

    0 0%
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Thread: Favourite Shakespeare

  1. #26
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    Romeo and Juliet is - besides Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice - the most beautifully written love story of all times - it is just incredible how marvelously narrated and perfectly dedicated these two lost souls seem to be on their hard struggle for love.

  2. #27
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    ... And gentlemen in England, now a-bed, shall think themelves accursed they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks, that fought with us upon St. Crispian's Day.

    Henry V

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    A Sonnet I know by heart and can quote without the necessity of using a text is Sonnet 41 - it is so beautiful and it just moves me.

    Those petty wrongs that liberty commits,
    When I am sometime absent from thy heart,
    Thy beauty and thy years full well befits,
    For still temptation follows where thou art.
    Gentle thou art and therefore to be won,
    Beauteous thou art, therefore to be assailed;
    And when a woman woos, what woman's son
    Will sourly leave her till she have prevailed?
    Ay me! but yet thou mightest my seat forbear,
    And chide try beauty and thy straying youth,
    Who lead thee in their riot even there
    Where thou art forced to break a twofold truth,
    Hers by thy beauty tempting her to thee,
    Thine, by thy beauty being false to me.

  4. #29
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    It would probably be a toss up between Romeo and Juliet and A Midsummer Nights Dream, with a slight edge to that most classic of love stories Romeo and Juliet. A story that has some relevance in my own marriage.

  5. #30
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    We never tire of it, do we? :)



    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

  6. #31
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    I like Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth and Cymbeline, but I love best his sonnets.

    To end sonnet 116, above-

    Love's not time's' fool, though rosy lips and cheeks within his bending sickle's compass come;
    Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, but bears it out, even to the end of doom;
    If this be error, and upon me proved,
    I never writ, nor no man ever loved.

    From sonnet 97 -

    How like a winter hath my absence been
    From thee, the pleasure of the fleeting year!
    What freezings have I felt, what dark days seen!
    What old December's bareness everywhere!

    From Sonnet 144 -

    To me, fair friend, you never can be old,
    For as you were when first your eye I eyed,
    Such seems your beauty still.

    From Cymbeline -

    Fear no more the heat 'o the sun;
    Nor the furious winter's rages,
    Thou thy worldly task hast done,
    Home art gone, and ta'en thy wages;
    Golden lads and girls all must,
    As chimney sweepers, come to dust.

  7. #32
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    Happy Shakespeare Day.

    I can tell my mood by the quotes which come to mind. I guess I'm currently a bit gloomy.














    If you really want to know the impact of the latter, go to 4:30 below and listen to Lawrence Olivier recite it. :) They should have had him record all the sonnets and the major soliloquies for posterity.

    Last edited by Angela; 12-01-20 at 21:57.

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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Macbeth, Hamlet, Richard III, Richard II, Timon of Athens, As You Like It

    Sonnets 15, 33, 62, 71, 73, 107

    Quotes by Macbeth:

    Stars, hide your fires. Let not light see my black and deep desires.

    O, full of scorpions is my mind, dear wife!

    Ere the bat hath flown his cloistered flight, ere to black Hecat's summons the shard-borne beetle, with his drowsy hums, hath rung night's yawning peal, there shall be done a deed of dreadful note.

    Light thickens and the crow makes wing to the rooky wood. Good things of day begin to droop and drowse, whiles night's black agents to their preys do rouse.

    I am in blood stepped in so far, that, should I wade no more, returning were as tedious as go o'er.

    I have lived long enough: my way of life has fallen into the sere, the yellow leaf

    Cure her of that. Can'st thou not minister to a mind diseased, pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow, raze out the written troubles of the brain, and with some sweet, oblivious antidote cleanse the stuffed bosom of that perilous stuff which weighs upon the heart?

    I 'gin to be aweary of the sun and wish the estate o'the world were now undone.

  9. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tamakore View Post
    Macbeth, Hamlet, Richard III, Richard II, Timon of Athens, As You Like It

    Sonnets 15, 33, 62, 71, 73, 107

    Quotes by Macbeth:

    Stars, hide your fires. Let not light see my black and deep desires.

    O, full of scorpions is my mind, dear wife!

    Ere the bat hath flown his cloistered flight, ere to black Hecat's summons the shard-borne beetle, with his drowsy hums, hath rung night's yawning peal, there shall be done a deed of dreadful note.

    Light thickens and the crow makes wing to the rooky wood. Good things of day begin to droop and drowse, whiles night's black agents to their preys do rouse.

    I am in blood stepped in so far, that, should I wade no more, returning were as tedious as go o'er.

    I have lived long enough: my way of life has fallen into the sere, the yellow leaf

    Cure her of that. Can'st thou not minister to a mind diseased, pluck from the memory a rooted sorrow, raze out the written troubles of the brain, and with some sweet, oblivious antidote cleanse the stuffed bosom of that perilous stuff which weighs upon the heart?

    I 'gin to be aweary of the sun and wish the estate o'the world were now undone.
    Indeed, wouldn't it be grand if someone could do that? :)

    At different stages of my life I have loved certain plays more or less. I'm reading and re-reading Lear a lot lately, Hamlet too, however.

    He's an unending source of inspiration and comfort and sometimes sheer joy at the beauty of his language.

    He can break your heart or make it sing:

    "Constance

    III iv 98
    Verse
    King John



    Grief fills the room up of my absent child,
    Lies in his bed, walks up and down with me,
    Puts on his pretty looks, repeats his words,
    Remembers me of all his gracious parts,
    Stuffs out his vacant garments with his form;
    Then, have I reason to be fond of grief?
    Fare you well: had you such a loss as I,
    I could give better comfort than you do.
    I will not keep this form upon my head,
    When there is such disorder in my wit.
    O Lord! my boy, my Arthur, my fair son!
    My life, my joy, my food, my all the world!
    My widow-comfort, and my sorrows' cure!

  10. #35
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    This string makes me want to go find my British Lit book and reread!

  11. #36
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    Like many, I love Shakespeare too, but I find his comedies (Midsummer Nights excepted) hard to take. It's not that he's a bad writer of comedy, but that the idea of what is comic has changed so much that these comedies seem simply abusive, as with Merry Wives. Of course I have the same problems with early comic movies that so often depend on the pain or humiliation of others as their source of laughter.

  12. #37
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    My favorite of Shakespeare's are his history plays, Richard III being the prime example. Henry IV, however, is a little difficult because I don't "get" the comedy of Falstaff.

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    I agree with you about Falstaff, I never warmed to him as a comic character. I read most of Shakespeare's comedies for their poetry rather than their humour.

    I think "Much Ado About Nothing" is his funniest comedy - e.g.
    Leonato: You must not, sir, mistake my niece. There is a kind of merry war betwixt Signior Benedick and her. They never meet but there's a skirmish of wit between them.
    Beatrice: Alas, he gets nothing by that. In our last conflict four of his five wits went halting off, and now is the whole man govern'd with one; so that if he have wit enough to keep himself warm, let him bear it for a difference between himself and his horse.

    There are also some nice comic lines in his earliest play "The Two Gentlemen of Verona".
    Launce: I think Crab my dog be the sourest-natured dog that lives. My mother weeping, my father wailing, my sister crying, our maid howling, our cat wringing her hands, and all our house in great perplexity; yet did not this cruel-hearted cur shed one tear.

  14. #39
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    2 members found this post helpful.
    Another Happy William Shakespeare Day. :)

    The plague shaped Shakespeare's life, from being in quarantine when he was three months old to save him, unlike his siblings, to writing some of his greatest works during or right after subsequent outbreaks. For some people, the experience of suffering deepens the soul and softens the heart. Alas, not for all.
    https://www.wbur.org/hereandnow/2020...ce=twitter.com

    Just what surfaces...

    This one I saw in a tweet today. I hadn't thought of it for some time, but it hit home.
    "Life is too short to love you alone in one, I promise to look for you in the next life."

    "My bounty is as boundless as the sea, My love as deep; the more I give to thee, The more I have, for both are infinite."

    A modern setting and a great performance of a lovely sonnet.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cKyuzXwSolA

    “When words fail, music speaks.”

    "How far that little candle throws his beams! So shines a good deed in a weary world."

    "Give sorrow words; the grief that does not speak knits up the o-er wrought heart and bids it break."

    “Everyone can master a grief but he that has it.”

    "Love all, trust a few, do wrong to none."

    For most eras:
    “What a terrible era in which idiots govern the blind.”

    I am going to needlepoint a big pillow with this, or embroider a linen with it and frame it, and keep it always in view,
    "No, I will be the pattern of all patience. I will say nothing."

    On my bad days:

    “Life's but a walking shadow, a poor player, That struts and frets his hour upon the stage, And then is heard no more. It is a tale Told by an idiot, full of sound and fury, Signifying nothing.”

    While in quarantine due to the plague Sir Isaac Newton, discovered calculus and Shakespeare, wrote King Lear.

    Let's get busy.

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    1 members found this post helpful.
    My love for Shakespeare isn't about the individual: it's about the language, the composition, and the craftsmanship that consolidate to be the virtuoso of the author. What his name was doesn't make a difference the slightest bit.


    The intensity of Shakespeare's plays and verse is that they take something standard and change it into something unprecedented.


    Subjects of love, enthusiasm, aspiration, vengeance, scorn, hopelessness, want, and family brokenness make his work fascinating and relatable to pretty much everybody. And keeping in mind that there are in any event twelve different ways to compose any story, the manner in which Shakespeare recounts to every story is supreme enchantment.


    Shakespeare utilized beat and lovely gadgets like symbolism, purposeful anecdote and exceptionally emotive language to increase the sentiments and show of the circumstances his characters wind up in. He entangles them in a perplexing snare of clashing feelings and desire and afterward uncovered their deepest contemplations in the most significant manners. He truly is the ace of interest and emotional incongruity, ready to hold the crowd enchanted, despite the fact that they presumably definitely comprehend what will occur and what the different characters are thinking.


    To be completely forthright, a portion of the storylines are pretty waste. There are extremely helpful happenstances, jumps of rationale, and plot gaps in abundance, especially in the comedies. The set of experiences plays are now and again more fiction than history. In spite of all that, Shakespeare sensationalizes the tales and scenes in such a convincing manner, thus profoundly connects with the crowd in the difficulties and clashes experienced by the characters, that any issue of validity really doesn't make a difference.


    I will even now get a play and read it, or watch a presentation, or read the works and be as enchanted as could be. In any event, when understandings change, the enchantment with which the words are created and woven never gets old.

  16. #41
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    I agree. Shakespeare was a magician of the English language. He wove spells that will continue to enchant "as long as men can breathe or eyes can see".

    Historical accuracy, plotting, originality, plausibility, morality, psychology, politics, even character development are all less important than the sheer poetic magic of the language. He was a unique literary genius who cannot be over-praised.

  17. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Tamakore View Post
    I agree. Shakespeare was a magician of the English language. He wove spells that will continue to enchant "as long as men can breathe or eyes can see".

    Historical accuracy, plotting, originality, plausibility, morality, psychology, politics, even character development are all less important than the sheer poetic magic of the language. He was a unique literary genius who cannot be over-praised.
    Completely agree about his genius with language and that he's not the writer to go to for historical accuracy or abstract philosophical ideas. If you want to know the human heart, however, he's the one. I do disagree about his tragedies. The older I get, the more they speak to me, especially Lear, but also Macbeth as a reflection of politics and power.

  18. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    I do disagree about his tragedies. The older I get, the more they speak to me, especially Lear, but also Macbeth as a reflection of politics and power.
    I was being mischievous when I posted "Shakespeare's genius lay for comedy and humour. In tragedy he appears quite out of his element" without attribution in the About Shakespeare thread. It's a quote from critic Thomas Rymer (1643-1713) and I wanted to see if anyone would recognize it.

    It illustrates how views of Shakespeare have changed over time. To some in the 17th century Shakespeare's tragedies were unsatisfactory because his heroes were not heroic enough. Instead they were complex and flawed. Hamlet, for example, was moody and self-doubting.

    To quote another past literary critic, William Hazlitt (1778-1830): "If we wish to know the force of human genius we should read Shakespeare. If we wish to see the insignificance of human learning we may study his commentators."

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