The Spanish Tragedy | Critical Essay by Fredson Thayer Bowers

This literature criticism consists of approximately 48 pages of analysis & critique of The Spanish Tragedy.
This section contains 14,218 words
(approx. 48 pages at 300 words per page)
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SOURCE: Bowers, Fredson Thayer. “The Spanish Tragedy and the Ur-Hamlet.” In Elizabethan Revenge Tragedy, 1587-1642, pp. 62-100. Gloucester, Mass.: Peter Smith, 1959.

In the following essay, which was first published in 1940, Bowers examines The Spanish Tragedy and the Ur-Hamlet as examples of the prototypical revenge tragedy, outlining the basic Kydian formula for creating a revenge tragedy, discussing probable sources and influences, and remarking on how the form was widely imitated by other Elizabethan dramatists.

1

The tragedy of revenge has been classified as a definite, small subdivision of the Elizabethan tragedy of blood; and obviously, plays like The Spanish Tragedy, Antonio's Revenge, and Hamlet should be set apart as a specific type from Shakespeare's Lear, Marston's Sophonisba, and Nabbes's Unfortunate Mother. These represent the two extremes of the tragedy of blood: on the one hand a cluster of plays which treat, according...

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This section contains 14,218 words
(approx. 48 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Fredson Thayer Bowers
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Literature Criticism Series
Critical Essay by Fredson Thayer Bowers from Literature Criticism Series. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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