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Home :: Archive :: 1995 :: August ::
Qs: Jonson & Florio; Lady Macbeth's Speech; Altering
Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 6, No. 0624.  Friday, 18 August 1995.
 
(1)     From:   Bob Leslie <
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        Date:   Friday, 18 Aug 1995 14:35:18 +0100
        Subj:   Jonson and Florio
 
(2)     From:   Michael Field <
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        Date:   Friday, 18 Aug 1995 11:16:18 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Lady Macbeth's Speech
 
(3)     From:   Mark Goldman <
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        Date:   Friday, 18 Aug 1995 13:48:26 -0400 (EDT)
        Subj:   Altering lines
 
 
(1)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Bob Leslie <
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Date:           Friday, 18 Aug 1995 14:35:18 +0100
Subject:        Jonson and Florio
 
Many thanks to all who helped me with the 'Shakespeare's Library' info. I'm on
the scrounge again for any information, factual or conjectural, which might
indicate the date of Ben Jonson's first meeting with John Florio. The earliest
I have is a 1603 fly-leaf inscription - does anyone out there know of an
earlier date?
 
      Bob Leslie
 
(2)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Michael Field <
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Date:           Friday, 18 Aug 1995 11:16:18 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Lady Macbeth's Speech
 
Dear Fellow SHAKSPERians;
 
With less than two weeks before production a disagreement has arisen about a
specific reading of a very famous line. I'm hoping you might be able to help.
When Lady Macbeth complains "Naughts had, alls spent, when our desire is got
without content" [my quote is from memory] is she saying content as in
contentment, or con'-tent as in things contained? Roger Gross, if your system
has a definitive ruling in this regard, I'd be most grateful to hear, just as
I'd love to hear from anyone else who has opinion on this matter.
 
        Thanks in advance,
        Mike Field
        The Maryland Renaissance Festival
 
(3)----------------------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Mark Goldman <
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Date:           Friday, 18 Aug 1995 13:48:26 -0400 (EDT)
Subject:        Altering lines
 
Kirsten Kern recently wrote:
 
>In our production of TGV, we chose not to alter the text or switch around
>lines as many have done in order to get around Valentine's puzzling offer of
>Sylvia to Proteus as a gesture of forgiveness.
 
This mention of "altering the text" intrigued me in light of the recent
discussion of Dogberry and other comical characters whose lines have become
incomprehensible.  Many of the now-meaningless speeches are hysterical *IF* you
have some detailed annotation standing-by.  Is it at all common to "alter" or
[dare I say it?] "update" specific passages of Shakespeare for performance? Can
puns be successfully updated?  I can't imagine anyone changing the text without
being accused of "ruining Shakespeare!"  If so, I'd love to hear from any
performers who have changed the texts without being run out of town.
 
Mark Goldman
Los Angeles, California
 

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