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Home :: Archive :: 1993 :: July ::
Latest Re: *Cardenio* MS
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 429.  Wednesday, 14 July 1993.
 
(1)     From:   Peter David Seary <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Jul 1993 10:22:03 -0500 (EDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
 
(2)     From:   Fran Teague <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Jul 93 09:52:29 EDT
        Subj:   Cardenio and 2nd Maiden's Tragedy
 
(3)     From:   Fran Teague <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Jul 93 11:04:37 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS:51:44 EDT
 
(4)     From:   Ship Shand <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 14 Jul 1993 11:21 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Peter David Seary <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Jul 1993 10:22:03 -0500 (EDT)
Subject: 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
 
Does anyone know whether the BL manuscript of *Cardenio* has any signs of
association with Lewis Theobald?  He claimed (and I believe him) to
have had three manuscripts of the play, which he adapted with
considerable success (at the box office) as *Double Falshood; or, the
Distrest Lovers*.  I suppose that discovery of a MS of *Cardenio* goes
some way towards vindicating Theobald against charges (most recently
made by Harriet C. Frazier, *A Babble of Ancestral Voices:
Shakespeare, Cervantes, and Theobald* [The Hague: Mouton, 1974]) that
*Double Falshood* is simply a forgery.  I don't believe that Frazier's
views are seriously entertained, and I accept the arguments put forward
by John Freehafer in "Cardenio, by Shakespeare and Fletcher," PMLA, 84
(1969) and Stephan Kukowski, "The Hand of John Fletcher in *Double
Falshood*," *Shakespeare Survey*, 43 (1991).  For those who may not
know Freehafer's article, his conclusions are as follows:
 
        it appears that Theobald did indeed possess three manuscripts of
        *Cardenio*; that *Cardenio* was written by Shakespeare and Fletcher;
        that it was based on the 1612 Shelton translation of *Don Quixote*;
        that *Cardenio* was cut and perhaps altered during the Restoration
        period, then altered by Theobald; that Theobald's lack of
        forthrightness in dealing with the authorship of the play resulted
        from his patron's erroneous belief that the original play was wholly
        by Shakespeare and his desire to protect his reputation as a
        Shakespeare scholar; and that Theobald probably destroyed no
        manuscripts of *Cardenio*. (p. 513)
 
Incidentally, Brean S. Hammond, "Theobald's *Double Falshood*: An
'Agreeable Cheat'?" *Notes and Queries*, 229 (1984), suggests that one
of Theobald's manuscripts may have survived in the Museum of
Covent-Garden Playhouse until the fire at the theatre on 19 September
1808.  Also, my copy of *Double Falshood* (1728) once belonged to W.W.
Greg, whose MS notes indicate that he thought the play a forgery.  In
holding his view, Greg was probably influenced by David Nichol Smith's
hostile account of Theobald in the Introduction to *Eighteenth Century
Essays on Shakespeare* (first ed., Glasgow: J. MacLehose, 1903; 2nd
ed., Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1963).
 
To return to my initial question: does anyone know if the manuscript of
*Cardenio* in the BL has any association with Theobald?
 
Peter Seary
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(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Fran Teague <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Jul 93 09:52:29 EDT
Subject:        Cardenio and 2nd Maiden's Tragedy
 
My morning paper said that the work Hamilton was arguing for was _The Second
Maiden's Tragedy_ MS in the British Museum.  This has been edited with great
care by Anne Lancashire in the Revels Plays series.
 
What Lancashire tells the reader is that SMT is one of several plays in
Lansdowne MS 807; the others are Francis Jaques's _Queen of Corsica_, Bugbears,
and a fragment of Robert Wild's Benefice.  The title comes from Sir George Buc
who was the Master of the Revels.  In licensing it for acting, he wrote on the
MS, "This second Maydens tagedy (for it hath no name inscribed) may wth the
reformations bee acted publikely.  31. octobr. 1611.   G. Buc."  So the
original had no title nor author at all.
 
Lancashire goes through the authorship question pretty thoroughly, finally
deciding Middleton's the likeliest candidate.  According to her notes, the only
one to make a case for Sh was E. B. Everitt, in _The Young Shakespeare:
Studies in Documentary Evidence_ (1954), which she calls "implausible."
 
Checking the work itself I see no connection to Don Quixote, from which the
name Cardenio comes.  Looks like a dud to me.
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Fran Teague <
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 >
Date:           Wednesday, 14 Jul 93 11:04:37 EDT
Subject: 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS:51:44 EDT
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS:51:44 EDT
 
More on Cardenio and Co.  Jon Callas asks about other apocryphal plays.  In
1653 the play Cardenio "by Mr. Fletcher and Shakespeare" was registered by
Humphrey Moseley; at the same time he entered _The Merry Devil of Edmonton_ as
being by Shakespeare;"Henry ye first and Hen: ye 2d by Shakespeare and
Davenport." In 1660 Moseley enters "The History of King Stephen; Duke Humphrey,
a Tragedy; Iph is & Ianthe or a marriage without a man, a Comedy, by Will.
Shakespeare."
>
Moreover in 1664, seven plays are added to Shakespeare's collected works:
Pericles, Locrine, The First Part of Sir John Oldcastle, Thomas Lord Cromwell,
The London Prodigal, The Puritan, and A Yorkshire Tragedy.  To learn more about
these, check any standard Shakespeare reference book under "Apocrypha."
 
There are lots of other candidates:  Birth of Merlin, Edward III, Arden of
Feversham.  My old edition of Bevington (and it is old--the 1980 one) has an
excellent appendix on these works.  It also reminds me that Lewis Theobald's
play _The Double Falshood or the Distressed Lovers_ is based on (tah dah)
CARDENIO!!  Pre-sumably anyone who wants to track down the Theobald and the
2nd Maiden's Tragedy can find out very quickly indeed if the two are
related--handwriting or not.
 
(4)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Ship Shand <
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Date:           Wednesday, 14 Jul 1993 11:21 EDT
Subject: 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
Comment:        Re: SHK 4.0428  Re: *Cardenio* MS
 
This morning's paper tells me that Hamilton's *Cardenio* is in fact the
well-known MS of Middleton's *Second Maiden's Tragedy*. Oh well, I guess
we can all go back to the beach.
 

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