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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: October ::
Shakespeare's "first serious critic" revealed by
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1961  Wednesday, 8 October 2003

From:           Robin Hamilton <
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 >
Date:           Tuesday, 7 Oct 2003 17:32:53 +0100
Subject: 14.1951 Shakespeare's "first serious critic" revealed
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.1951 Shakespeare's "first serious critic" revealed
by Stanley Wells in TLS

Clifford Stetner <
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 > wrotes,

>1) Scott's criticism of the verse of RII seems to assume it was written
>for "readers," as well as playgoers. He himself discusses it as poetry

Well, one bit of RII did pretty quickly get recycled as a poem, with a
link to Essex.

Compare:

    What reverence he did throw away on slaves,
    Wooing poor craftsmen with the craft of smiles
    And patient underbearing of his fortune,
    As 'twere to banish their affects with him.
    Off goes his bonnet to an oyster-wench;

(Richard on Bolingbroke)

with:

    Renowned Essex, as he past the streets,
    Woulde vaile his bonnett to an oyster wife,
    And with a kinde of humble congie greete
    The vulgar sorte that did admire his life:
    And now sith he hath spent his livinge breath,
    They will not cease yet to lament his death.

(From an anti-Ralegh poem written between c. 1603-18.  In J.O.Halliwell
(ed.), Poetical Miscellanies from a MS. coll. of the time of James I
(London, 1845), pp. 15 -18.)

Robin Hamilton

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