King Lear

Front Cover
Penguin, 1999 - Drama - 142 pages
15 Reviews
The classic one-volume Shakespeare, including all the plays and poems, now completely revised and updated.
The distinguished Pelican Shakespeare series has sold five million copies. Now Penguin is proud to offer this fully revised new hardcover edition of the Complete Pelican Shakespeare.
Since the series debuted more than forty years ago, developments in scholarship have revolutionized our understanding of William Shakespeare, his time, and his works. With new editors who have incorporated the most up-to-date research and debate, this revised edition of the Complete Pelican Shakespeare will be the premier choice for students, professors, and general readers for decades to come.
The general editors of the series-world-renowned Shakespeareans Stephen Orgel of Stanford University and A. R. Braunmuller of UCLA - devoted seven years to preparing introductions and notes with a team of eminent scholars to the forty volumes of Shakespeare's plays and poems. Now, the new series is complete and available in one lavish and complete edition.
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*Authoritative and meticulously researched texts
*Illuminating new introductions and notes by distinguished authors
*Essays on Shakespeare's life, the theatrical world of his time, and the selection of texts
*A handsome new design inside and out * Deluxe packaging, including a full-linen case, ribbon marker, Smyth-sewn binding, printed endpapers, acid-free paper, and illustrations throughout
*Photos and drawings reflecting Shakespeare's theatrical legacy
*Line numbers marking every tenth line and footnote references
*Both glossorial and explanatory notes appearing conveniently at the foot of the page
  

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Review: King Lear

User Review  - Alex - Goodreads

Here is Shakespeare's biggest bummer in a long career of bummers. In fact, in all of literature maybe only Jude the Obscure matches it for general depressivosity. Remember that catch phrase kids ... Read full review

Review: King Lear

User Review  - Jay McNair - Goodreads

"Cordelia, Cordelia, stay a little. Ha, What is't thou say'st? Her voice was ever soft," Read full review

Selected pages

Contents

Publishers Note
vii
The Theatrical World
ix
The Texts of Shakespeare
xxv
Introduction
xxxi
Note on the Text
xlv
King Lear
1
Copyright

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About the author (1999)

William Shakespeare, 1564 - 1616 Although there are many myths and mysteries surrounding William Shakespeare, a great deal is actually known about his life. He was born in Stratford-Upon-Avon, son of John Shakespeare, a prosperous merchant and local politician and Mary Arden, who had the wealth to send their oldest son to Stratford Grammar School. At 18, Shakespeare married Anne Hathaway, the 27-year-old daughter of a local farmer, and they had their first daughter six months later. He probably developed an interest in theatre by watching plays performed by traveling players in Stratford while still in his youth. Some time before 1592, he left his family to take up residence in London, where he began acting and writing plays and poetry. By 1594 Shakespeare had become a member and part owner of an acting company called The Lord Chamberlain's Men, where he soon became the company's principal playwright. His plays enjoyed great popularity and high critical acclaim in the newly built Globe Theatre. It was through his popularity that the troupe gained the attention of the new king, James I, who appointed them the King's Players in 1603. Before retiring to Stratford in 1613, after the Globe burned down, he wrote more than three dozen plays (that we are sure of) and more than 150 sonnets. He was celebrated by Ben Jonson, one of the leading playwrights of the day, as a writer who would be "not for an age, but for all time," a prediction that has proved to be true. Today, Shakespeare towers over all other English writers and has few rivals in any language. His genius and creativity continue to astound scholars, and his plays continue to delight audiences. Many have served as the basis for operas, ballets, musical compositions, and films. While Jonson and other writers labored over their plays, Shakespeare seems to have had the ability to turn out work of exceptionally high caliber at an amazing speed. At the height of his career, he wrote an average of two plays a year as well as dozens of poems, songs, and possibly even verses for tombstones and heraldic shields, all while he continued to act in the plays performed by the Lord Chamberlain's Men. This staggering output is even more impressive when one considers its variety. Except for the English history plays, he never wrote the same kind of play twice. He seems to have had a good deal of fun in trying his hand at every kind of play. Shakespeare wrote 154 sonnets, all published on 1609, most of which were dedicated to his patron Henry Wriothsley, The Earl of Southhampton. He also wrote 13 comedies, 13 histories, 6 tragedies, and 4 tragecomedies. He died at Stratford-upon-Avon April 23, 1616, and was buried two days later on the grounds of Holy Trinity Church in Stratford. His cause of death was unknown, but it is surmised that he knew he was dying.

Stephen Orgel is Jackson Eli Reynolds Professor of Humanities at Stanford University.

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