Volpone Essay

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In this essay, Liu shows the relationship between the seemingly incongruous themes in the play, which many criticize "for its seemingly irrelevant subplot, fool interludes, and mount-bank scene, as well as for the near-tragic tone of its denouement."

Ben Jonson's Volpone has for centuries been acclaimed a masterpiece; yet it has been condemned for as long a time for its seemingly irrelevant subplot, fool interludes, and mountebank scene, as well as for the near-tragic tone of its denouement. With these charges against it, the play has nevertheless won such admiration and respect as to suggest that there is much in it to be appreciated which, though overlooked by the critics, must be implicit in its performance.

In 1953 Jonas A. Barish took the first step toward finding a connection between the main plot and the subplot by identifying their respective protagonists as Volpone and Sir Politique Would-bee, justifying their...

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This section contains 3,527 words
(approx. 9 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy the Volpone Study Guide
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Drama for Students
Volpone from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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