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Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: December ::
Re: Canterbury on Playwriting
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.2267  Wednesday, 22 December 1999.

From:           Clifford Stetner <
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Date:           Tuesday, 21 Dec 1999 10:54:40 -0500
Subject: 10.2227 Canterbury on Playwriting
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.2227 Canterbury on Playwriting

What might the "one consent...one purpose" be in the case of
Shakespeare's playwriting?

Clifford Stetner

>Re-reading "Henry V" (in the 1995 Arden edition, edited by T. W. Craik),
>I was struck by a passage in Act I, Scene 2, that (to me) could be taken
>as summing up Shakespeare's own attitude toward playwriting. The speaker
>is the Archbishop of Canterbury, lines 204-214:
>
>"... I this infer,
>That many things having full reference
>To one consent may work contrariously,
>As many arrows loosed several ways
>Come to one mark,
>As many several ways meet in one town,
>As many fresh streams meet in one salt sea,
>As many lines close in the dial's centre.
>So may a thousand actions once afoot
>End in one purpose and be all well borne
>Without defeat."
>
>Tad Davis
 

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