Shakespeare Electronic Conference, Vol. 4, No. 132.  Thursday, 4 March 1993.
From:           Roy Flannagan <This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.>
Date:           Thursday, 4 March 93, 17:31:19 EST
Subject:        [Random Queries]
A few almost random queries, based on points that have come in classes
that dealt with comedies and tragedies:
Is Shakespeare down on dogs, since he has very few kind words to say
about them, except possibly beagles ({Twelfth Night}) and hounds with
matched voices ({MND})?   Is the problem that they might be associated
with hell hounds?  What is a whoreson dog, precisely?
In {King Lear}, with its missing mothers, what can we say about Edmund's
mother, other than that she was presumably a "good sport" in his making?
Is the audience really supposed to like Sir Toby Belch?  I have one
student (not notably puritanical), who finds more to like about Malvolio
than Sir Toby.
Is Feste's final song--concerned with, among other things,
"tosspots"-- a final word on Sir Toby's world of heavy toping?
Why does Shakespeare invariably give his romantic leads bad poetry to
compose, as with Orlando and even Hamlet?  Are the Fools or minstrels,
provided that they are supposed to be writing their own material, better
poets than the lovers?
My questions might seem flippant or under-informed, but I would
appreciate hearing the collective wisdom of SHAKSPERians.
Roy Flannagan

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