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For convenience of reference, this list is reprinted: (from "Palladis Tamia," 1598).

"As Plautus and Seneca are accounted the best for Comedy and Tragedy among the Latines; so Shakespere among ye English is the most excellent in both kinds for the stage for Comedy, witnes his Getleme of Verona, his Errors, his Love labors lost, his Love labors wonne, his Midsummer night dreame, and his Merchant of Venice: for Tragedy his Richard the 2, Richard the 3, Henry the 4, King John, Titus Andronicus, and his Romeo and Juliet."




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SYNOPTICAL TABLE OF SHAKESPEARE'S William Shakespeare, third child, but eldest son, of John Shakespeare,b (wool-stapler and glover, afterwards senior Alderman, in Stratfordon-Avon, Warwickshire,) and Mary Arden" his wife-born April 23... Marriage to Anne Hathaway,d of Shottery, near Stratford... Alleged threatened prosecution for deer-stealing-flight to London.. 22 Employment in London as Actor and subsequently Adapter of Plays. Performance of First Adapted Plays..


Supposed production of First Original Play..
Became Shareholder in the "Blackfriars" Theatre...
Became Pari-Proprietor of the "Globe" Theatre.
First Poem," Venus and Adonis," published.











Second Poem, "Tarquin and Lucrece," published.


Bought "New-Place House, &c.," in Stratford-on-Avon


Third Poem, "The Passionate Pilgrim,' &c., published.


Named second in Patent granted by James I to the "King's Servants".
Ceased appearing as an Actor (being Part-Proprietor and Author).
Fourth Poem-Sonnets" (154 in number,) published..

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a There are extant five autographs of the Poet, all differing in spelling. Many modern editors have preferred "Shakspere," (or " Shakspeare," in deference to the last signature in his Will;) but in the Dedications of his Poems, as well as in nearly all the printed quartos of bis Plays, and repeatedly in the First Folio, the name is printed"Shakespeare."

b John Shakespeare was, in 1569, High Bailiff (or Mayor) of Stratford : he died 1601. Margery (Arden) Shakespeare, the Poet's mother, died 1587.

d Anne Hathaway, daughter of Richard Hathaway, a "substantial yeoman," was eight years older than her husband. She died in 1623, at the age of 67.-There were three children (1) Susanna, baptized May 26, 1583; (2) Hamnet, and (3) Judith (twins) baptized February 2, 1584.

(1) Susanna, the elder daughter, was, in 1607, married to Dr. John Hall; she died in 1649, aged sixty-six, leaving an only child, Elizabeth.*

(2) Hamnet, the Poet's only son, died in 1596, at the age of 12.

(3) Judith was married, in 1616, to Thomas Quiney; she died in 1661.


This lady, the only child of Dr. and Mrs. Hall, the Poet's sole surviving grandchild, was twice married; first to Thomas Nash, gentleman," who died in 1617; d next, two years later, to Sir John Barnard of Abington, Northamptonshire. As lied childless in 1669, the family of William Shakespeare became extinct.




Very considerable interest belongs to the play of "The Two Gentlemen of Verona; " as, according to evidence internal and external, it is probably Shakespeare's earliest original dramatic production. Being the first Comedy mentioned by Meres, (see page 6,) it may have been performed about 1592, but it was not printed till in the folio of 1623.

At whatever date it was written, it assuredly proves that the author was a novice in theatrical composition; although he displays, in harmonious diction, a considerable amount of romantic tenderness-often, however, hampered with vagueness and indecision; generally simple and natural, but seldom dramatic; and nowhere exhibiting either imaginative power or Promethean fire. Yet here we have the germs of many future flowers-germs, which, it must be confessed, give but little promise of stately growth and variegated blossom.

The incidents embodied in the Comedy may have been founded on the pastoral romance of "Diana Enamorada," by the Portuguese writer George of Montemayor (1542); blended with one of the stories in Sir Philip Sydney's "Arcadia" (1590); or, more probably, on a now lost play produced in 1584, "The History of Felix and Philiomena,"-taken from the Portuguese story of "Diana." The buffoonery introduced must be considered, not as an emanation of scholarly wit or judgment, but as a youthful sacrifice to a depraved popular taste. Dr. Johnson thinks that the text is comparatively pure; having escaped corruption because it was seldom performed, and consequently less exposed to the hazards or to the vagaries of transcribers. The moral of the play-for even the youthful Shakespeare does not write without an object-is, Forgiveness.

The Characters retained in this Condensation are: DUKE OF MILAN, Father to Silvia.

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LAUNCE, Servant to Proteus.
PANTHINO, Servant to Antonio.
HOST, where Julia lodges.
OUTLAWS with Valentine.

JULIA, beloved of Proteus.
SILVIA, beloved of Valentine.
LUCETTA, Waiting-woman to Julia.

Servants, Musicians, &c.

and in a Forest near Milan.

The Story of the Shepherdess Felismena. b The following is the only record of this play: 1584: "The History of Felix and Philiomena, shewed and enacted before her highnes by her Mats servaunts on the sondaie nexte after newyeares daie, at night at Greenwiche." O. R. Protheus-(so printed throughout the comedy).


The Comedy opens, on a Park in the City of Verona, with a conversation between two Gentlemen,-Valentine, a mocker at the power of Cupid, and Proteus, a martyr to his influence. Valentine has resolved to try his fortune at the Emperor's Court, in spite of the objections of his friend:

Val. 'Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus:

'Home-keeping youth have ever homely 'wits.
Were 't not Affection chains thy tender days
To the sweet glances of thy honoured love,
'I rather would entreat thy 'company;

But, 'since thou lov'st, love 'still, and 'thrive therein,-
Even as 'I would, . . . when I to love begin.

Pro. 'Wilt thou be gone?... Sweet Valentine, adieu!
If ever 'danger do environ thee,

Commend thy grievance to my holy prayers;
For I will be thy 'beadsman, Valentine.
Val. And, on a love-book, 'pray for my success?
Pro. Upon 'some book I love, I'll pray for thee.
Val. That's on some 'shallow story of 'deep love;

Of love, where scorn is bought with 'groans; coy looks,
With heart-sore 'sighs; one fading 'moment's mirth,
With twenty watchful, weary, tedious 'nights:
If haply 'won, perhaps a hapless 'gain;


If 'lost, why then a grievous labour 'won:
How-ever, but a 'folly bought with wit,
Or else a wit by folly 'overthrown.

Pro. So, by your circumstance,' you

call me


Val. So, by 'your circumstance," I fear you 'll 'prove.
Pro. 'T is 'Love you cavil at: 'I am not Love.
Val. Love is your 'master, for he masters you;
And he that is so 'yoke-led" by a fool,
Methinks, should not be chronicled for 'wise.
But wherefore waste I time to counsel 'thee,
That art a votary1 to fond desire?

Once more, adieu! My father, at the road,'
Expects my coming-there to see me 'shipped.
Pro. And thither will I 'bring thee, Valentine.
Val. Sweet Proteus, no; 'now let us take our leave.
At Milan, let me hear from thee, by letters,
Of thy 'success in love, and what news else

the chief city of Lombardy,

a a city of Venetia, in northern Italy, on the Adige. in northern Italy, on the Olona. one engaged in prayer for another. din whatso

ever way. O R. vanquishéd. fstatement. g condition.

worshipper. place of safety for a ship; anchorage.

hO. R. yokéd. devotee, KO. R. to Millaine.

Betideth here in absence of thy friend;
And 'I likewise will visit thee with 'mine.
Pro. All happiness bechance to thee in Milan !
Val. As much to you at 'home! and so farewell.

Valentine goes away, and Proteus is alone.
Pro. 'He after 'honour hunts-'I after 'love!
'He leaves his friends, to dignify them more;
'I leave 'myself, my friends, and 'all, for love!
Thou, Julia, thou hast metamorphosed me,-
Made me neglect my studies, lose my time,
War with good counsel, set the 'world at naught;


Made wit, with musing, weak,-heart, sick, with thought!

Proteus had previously employed Valentine's Servant, Speed, to carry a letter to the Lady Julia, and he is now awaiting her reply. At last Speed enters:

Speed. Sir Proteus, save you! Saw you my master?
Pro. But now he parted hence, to embark for Milan.
Speed. Twenty-to-one then, he is shipped 'already;
And I have played the 'sheep in losing him.
Pro. Indeed, a sheep doth very 'often stray,

An if the shepherd be awhile 'away.

Speed. You conclude, that my master 'is a shepherd then, and I a sheep?--Nay, that I can deny, by a 'circum


Pro. It shall go hard but I'll 'prove it, by another. Speed. The 'shepherd seeks the 'sheep, and not the sheep the shepherd; but 'I seek my 'master, and my master seeks not 'me: therefore, I am 'no sheep.

Pro. The sheep, for 'fodder, follow the shepherd; the 'shepherd, for food, follows not the sheep: thou, for 'wages, followest thy master; thy master, for wages, follows not 'thee: therefore, thou art a sheep. Speed. . . . Such 'another proof will make me cry "baa." Pro. But (dost thou hear?) gav'st thou my letter to Julia? Speed. Ay, sir: I, (a lost mutton,) gave your letter to 'her, (a 'laced mutton;) and she, (a laced mutton,) gave 'me, (a lost mutton,) 'nothing for my labour.

Pro. Come, come; open the matter in 'brief; what 'said she?

a O. R. loue.

bif (that).

Speed being called a sheep that had lost his master, now calls himself "a lost mutton, and the young lady "a laced mutton"; that is,

(a showily bodiced girl).

Speed. Open your 'purse, that the money, 'and the matter, may be both at once delivered.


Pro. Well, sir, here is for your pains. [ing] 'What said she?

Speed. Truly, sir, I think you'll hardly 'win her.

Pro. Why? Couldst thou preceive so much from her? Speed. Sir, I could perceive nothing at 'all from her; no, not so much as a 'ducat for delivering your letter. Pro. What! said she 'nothing?

Speed. No, not so much as "Take this for thy pains." To testify your bounty, I thank you; you have 'testerned me: in requital whereof,

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henceforth carry your letters 'yourself. And 'so, sir, I'll commend you to my master.

[Exit Speed.

Pro. Go, go! be gone,-to save your ship from wreck;"
Which cannot perish, having 'thee aboard,
Being destined to a 'drier death on shore.a
I must go send some 'better messenger:
I fear, my Julia would not deign my lines,
Receiving them from such a worthless post.


We overhear now a garden colloquy of the fair Julia with her Waiting-maid.

Jul. But say, Lucetta, now we are alone,

Wouldst thou then 'counsel me to fall in love?
Inc. Ay, madam; so you 'stumble not unheedfully.
Jul. Of all the fair resort of gentlemen,

That every day with parle' encounter me,
In thy opinion, which is 'worthiest love?
Luc. Please you, repeat their names, I 'll show my
According to my shallow simple skill.

Jul. What think'st thou of the fair Sir 'Eglamour?
Luc. As of a knight well-spoken, neat, and fine;
But, were I you, 'he never should be mine.
Jul. What think'st thou of the rich 'Mercutio?
Luc. Well, of his 'wealth; but of 'himself, so-so.
Jul. What think'st thou of the gentle 'Proteus?
Luc. Pardon, dear madam: 't is a passings shame
That I, unworthy body" as I am,-
Should censure' thus on 'lovely 'gentlemen.


a a coin struck by a duke: in Venice, there were two ducats; the gold, worth about sh.; and the silver 3 s. 3 d. b given me a tester, (sixpence). CO. R. wrack. he old proverb says: "He that is born to be hanged will never be drowned." tter-carrier. f conversation (love-speeches). g surpassing, exceedingly great. han insignificant person. i deliver an unfavorable opinion.

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