Thomas Kyd Writing Styles in The Spanish Tragedy

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Dramatic Irony

The play consistently employs dramatic irony, a situation in which one or more characters acts without full knowledge of the facts, but those facts are known by the audience. For example, in act 1, scene 3, the viceroy of Portugal mourns the son he believes to be dead, but the audience knows Balthazar is alive. In act 2, scene 2, when Bel-Imperia and Horatio declare their love for each other, the audience knows that a plot is already in motion to destroy their love. Indeed, in that same scene Lorenzo and Balthazar, unseen watchers, state explicitly what awaits the two lovers. The audience is also aware that after Pedringano has murdered Serberine, the pardon Pedrigano so confidently expects, and on which he bases his words and actions, does not exist.

There is also a dramatic irony that frames the entire play, since on several occasions, the figure of Revenge tells the...

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This section contains 495 words
(approx. 2 pages at 400 words per page)
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Drama for Students
The Spanish Tragedy from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.