The Merry Wives of Windsor (3rd Series)

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9780174435280: The Merry Wives of Windsor (3rd Series)

"The Merry Wives of Windsor", Shakespeare's only thoroughly English comedy, created an archetypal literary figure in the shape of the devious, irrepressible John Falstaff. This stimulating new edition celebrates the play as a joyous exploration of language, but also places elements of its plot firmly in a continental, specifically Italian, tradition of romantic comedy. It draws out the complexities of Merry Wives as a multi-plot play, and takes a fresh and challenging look at both textual and dating issues. The play's extensive performance history, both dramatic and operatic, is fully explored and discussed.

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Book Description:

John Dover Wilson's New Shakespeare, published between 1921 and 1966, became the classic Cambridge edition of Shakespeare's plays and poems until the 1980s. The series, long since out-of-print, is now reissued. Each work contains a lengthy and lively introduction, main text, and substantial notes and glossary.

From the Back Cover:

According to legend, Queen Elizabeth I was so delighted with the character of Sir John Falstaff in Henry IV, Parts I and II, that she commanded Shakespeare to create a romantic comedy depicting the jolly old rogue in love. The obedient playwright responded with The Merry Wives of Windsor, a lively and enduring farce that offers a humorous rebuff to lechery and hypocrisy.
Falstaff, whose greed and vanity overwhelm his good sense, determines to seduce a pair of well-to-do country housewives. The portly knight meets his match among the gentlewomen of Windsor, however, who counter his every stratagem with witty maneuvers of their own that expose Sir John's tomfoolery to public mirth. Familiar Shakespearean themes and devices—romance, jealousy, disguises, and mistaken identities—enrich the plot, along with a sparkling cast of supporting characters, including rival wooers, informers, and witty go-betweens.
Dover (2014) unabridged republication of a standard edition.
See every Dover book in print at
www.doverpublications.com

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