Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 1999 :: June ::
Re: Q1 Hamlet
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 10.1084  Tuesday, 29 June 1999.

[1]     From:   Clifford Stetner <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Monday, 28 Jun 1999 12:23:52 -0400
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.1044 Re: Q1 Hamlet

[2]     From:   John Robinson <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Monday, 28 Jun 1999 14:41:10 EDT
        Subj:   Re: SHK 10.1076 Re: Q1 Hamlet


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Clifford Stetner <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 28 Jun 1999 12:23:52 -0400
Subject: 10.1044 Re: Q1 Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.1044 Re: Q1 Hamlet

Between the time I drafted this post and sending it, David Kathman
stated the case more articulately. Has the possibility of a connection
between Q1 and the so-called "Ur-Hamlet" conjectured (but not proven) to
have been a play by Kyd ever been suggested?

Perhaps Shakespeare was an apprentice to Kyd as a young actor, and the
"Ur-Hamlet" is actually a very early work of his (an earlier incarnation
of Q1) with a lot of input from Kyd.  This story would account for the
clumsiness of Q1 while possibly shedding light on the significance of
Shakespeare's introduction of the character of Horatio.

We know for instance, that Der Bestrafte Brudermord appeared in Germany
in the Eighteenth Century using the character names from Q1 indicating
that it is a sort of memorial construction of an early version of Hamlet
viewed in London by the German playwright (although there are other
theories).

I find the possibility of Hamlet's being a product of Shakespeare's
apprenticeship interesting in light of the themes of the play itself and
of the effect that Kyd's torture by the Elizabethan state and early
death may have had on Shakespeare's political attitudes.

I suppose there is not sufficient evidence to support this scenario, but
nothing we know confutes it.  Perhaps all such questions of provenance
are by their nature unresolvable.  They are fraught with too many
complexities for which we have no surviving archeological record.  They
are therefore doomed to remain matters of opinion and perspective.

Clifford Stetner (Ur-student of Professor Ur-kowitz at CUNY)
www.columbia.edu/~fs10/cds.htm

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           John Robinson <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Monday, 28 Jun 1999 14:41:10 EDT
Subject: 10.1076 Re: Q1 Hamlet
Comment:        Re: SHK 10.1076 Re: Q1 Hamlet

 >I still have questions on some specifics in the passages I offered for
 >examination.  In the "To be or not to be soliloquy," though parallels
 >can be found elsewhere in Shakespeare to "ay, there's the point" and
"ay
 >marry, there it goes," here-in the context of a soliloquy on
death-they
 >strike me as flat and weak, almost as line fillers.  Similarly, in the
 >last line-"Ay, that. O, this conscience makes cowards of us all"-"Ay,
 >that" strikes me as a weak bit of padding.

Yes, Q1's "I marry, there it goes" does sound "flat and weak, almost as
line fillers." When I first heard the theory that Q1 may be a memorial
reconstruction it occurred to me that the afore mentioned line sounds
suspiciously like a mind editorializing on it's own thought process. As
if a person were having difficulty remembering the lines then remarked
something to the effect of "Oh yeah, I remember how it goes."The
speakers commentary was then recorded along with the lines of the play.

Just a thought.

John Robinson
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.