2002

The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 13.07382  Tuesday, 12 March 2002

From:           Clifford Stetner <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Monday, 11 Mar 2002 21:04:13 -0500
Subject: 13.0733 Re: Machiavelli
Comment:        Re: SHK 13.0733 Re: Machiavelli

> I even suggested they might see
> Marlowe's ghost in the ghost of Hamlet's father, and thus have to digest
> mentally if the ghost which opened _Hamlet_ was a "Machiavellian"
> ghost?
> Maybe Hamlet's
> father's ghost was the ghost of  the dead Marlowe in Shakespeare's mind,
>
> Bill Arnold


Some time back I suggested to an unenthusiastic response that the name
Horatio would evoke Kyd who had just died from illness sustained from
the Tower rack and who is credited on thin evidence with the alleged
"Ur-Hamlet." Even in the absence of a previous Kyd Hamlet, the
popularity of The Spanish Tragedy and the uniqueness of the name
together with the ghost and revenge plot would make this association
inevitable for many play goers.  Shakespeare's Horatio is an explicit
link to the dead playwright, a ghost of his genius, a rootless visitor
and wanderer. He appears from nowhere and returns to nowhere.  If there
is a "Hamlet is Shakespeare" allegorical layer behind Hamlet's
playwright/director identity, Kyd would be the liklier candidate for the
ghost that haunts him. If the accepted account of Marlowe's death was
accepted at the time, he would have little claim to righteous vengeance.
Whereas the pitiful death of the great Kyd, unjustly (apparently)
tortured for Marlowe's theological indiscretions, must give any aspiring
tragedian dealing in political and theological issues something to
contemplate.

Clifford

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