The Spanish Tragedy

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Manchester University Press, May 15, 1996 - Drama - 143 pages
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The "revenge" play became the most durable and commercially successful type of drama on the Elizabethan stage. This example by Thomas Kyd, who was one of the originators of the genre, brings to life the intrigues of the Spanish court, dramatically juxtaposing romantic passion with sudden violent death and clandestine politics. The ghost of Dan Andrea and his guide Revenge observe the dark and bloody action throughout, provoking questions about the nature of the human condition.

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About the author (1996)

Son of a scrivener, Kyd is best known as the author of The Spanish Tragedy (c.1586) an extremely popular revenge tragedy of the late 1580s and one of the most parodied of Elizabethan plays. Kyd's only other acknowledged authorship is the translation of Robert Garnier's Senecan tragedy, Cornelie, in 1594. He may also have written the lost Hamlet play that precedes Shakespeare's. Although Kyd's balanced rhetoric seems old fashioned, The Spanish Tragedy is notable for its searing passions and intensely dramatic rendering of revenge-tragedy themes.

David Bevington is Professor Emeritus at the University of Chicago. His recent publications include "Shakespeare: The Seven Ages of Human Experience" (second edition, 2005) and "Shakespeare: Script, Stage, Screen" (with Anne Marie Welsh and Michael L. Greenwald, 2006). He has also edited the Bantam Shakespeare in 29 volumes (currently being reedited), "The Complete Works of Shakespeare" (fifth edition, 2003), and a number of individual Shakespeare plays including "Antony and Cleopatra," "Henry IV, Part I," and "Troilus and Cressida,

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