Shakespeare's Tragic Sequence
First published in 1972.
The emphasis of this book is that each of Shakespeare's tragedies demanded its own individual form and that although certain themes run through most of the tragedies, nearly all critics refrain from the attempt to apply external rules to them. The plays are almost always concerned with one person; they end with the death of the hero; the suffering and calamity that befall him are exceptional; and the tragedies include the medieval idea of the reversal of fortune.
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action Antony Antony and Cleopatra Antony’s argued audience avenger Banquo behaviour Bradley Brutus Caesar Cassius character Claudius Claudius’s Cleopatra Coleridge confesses conﬂict conscience contrast Cordelia Coriolanus critics death declares deed Desdemona devil difﬁcult dramatist Edgar Elizabethan evil father fear ﬁgure ﬁnal ﬁnally ﬁnd ﬁrst scene ﬁt ﬂatterers ﬂesh fool Gertrude Ghost Gloucester gods Goneril Guildenstern guilty Hamlet hates hath heart heaven Horatio horror Iago Iago’s imagery images inﬂuence jealous Juliet kill King Lear King’s L. C. Knights Laertes Lear’s lovers man’s Menenius merely mind moral mother murder nature night noble Ophelia Othello passion play Plutarch poet Polonius Professor Queen realise reﬂection regarded revealed revenge Richard Roderigo Romeo Rosencrantz sacriﬁce says Shakespeare signiﬁcant soliloquy soul speaks speech spirit suggested suicide tells thee There’s thou thought Timon Timon of Athens Titus Andronicus tragedy tragic hero villain virtue wife Wilson Knight words