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Penguin, Jun 1, 1998 - Fiction - 368 pages
34 Reviews
There is arguably no work of fiction quoted as often as William Shakespeare's Hamlet. This haunting tragedy has touched audiences for centuries. In addition to the play, this edition includes an overview of Shakespeare's life; commentary by Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Carolyn Heilbrun, and others; a stage and screen history; and many other features to help the reader understand and enjoy this incomparable classic.



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Review: Hamlet

User Review  - Lotz - Goodreads

Every time I consider saying something about Hamlet, I get a lump in my throat—so I'll just say this. Reading this play is much like looking up at the starry sky: the feeling of being absolutely small in the presence of something immense and immensely beautiful. Read full review

Review: Hamlet

User Review  - Kate - Goodreads

Also 1 July 1995. He doesn't seem crazy to me. Or melancholy. Perceptive. Angry and bitter, and sarcastic as a result. In this reading (perhaps influenced by seeing Ralph Fiennes's brilliant ... Read full review


Biographical Sketch
The Shakespeare Canon
Shakespeares English
Shakespeares Theater
Costumes Gestures and Silences Prose and Poetry
The Play Text as a Collaboration
Editing Texts
Shakespeare on the Stage
The Folio 1623
The Present Text

By indirections find directions out 2166
Enter Ghost 1139 stage direction
Revenge his foul and most unnatural murder 1525
I do not know Why yet I live to say This things to do 444344
The readiness is all 5222324
The First Quarto Q1 1603
The Second Quarto Q2 16041605

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About the author (1998)

William Shakespeare was born in Stratford-upon-Avon in April 1564, and his birth is traditionally celebrated on April 23. The facts of his life, known from surviving documents, are sparse. He was one of eight children born to John Shakespeare, a merchant of some standing in his community. William probably went to the King’s New School in Stratford, but he had no university education. In November 1582, at the age of eighteen, he married Anne Hathaway, eight years his senior, who was pregnant with their first child, Susanna. She was born on May 26, 1583. Twins, a boy, Hamnet ( who would die at age eleven), and a girl, Judith, were born in 1585. By 1592 Shakespeare had gone to London working as an actor and already known as a playwright. A rival dramatist, Robert Greene, referred to him as “an upstart crow, beautified with our feathers.” Shakespeare became a principal shareholder and playwright of the successful acting troupe, the Lord Chamberlain’s Men (later under James I, called the King’s Men). In 1599 the Lord Chamberlain’s Men built and occupied the Globe Theater in Southwark near the Thames River. Here many of Shakespeare’s plays were performed by the most famous actors of his time, including Richard Burbage, Will Kempe, and Robert Armin. In addition to his 37 plays, Shakespeare had a hand in others, including Sir Thomas More and The Two Noble Kinsmen, and he wrote poems, including Venus and Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece. His 154 sonnets were published, probably without his authorization, in 1609. In 1611 or 1612 he gave up his lodgings in London and devoted more and more time to retirement in Stratford, though he continued writing such plays as The Tempest and Henry VII until about 1613. He died on April 23 1616, and was buried in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford. No collected edition of his plays was published during his life-time, but in 1623 two members of his acting company, John Heminges and Henry Condell, put together the great collection now called the First Folio.

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