The First Two Quartos of Hamlet: A New View of the Origins and Relationship of the Texts (Paperback)
  • The First Two Quartos of Hamlet: A New View of the Origins and Relationship of the Texts (Paperback)
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The First Two Quartos of Hamlet: A New View of the Origins and Relationship of the Texts (Paperback)

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£32.50
Paperback 256 Pages / Published: 30/08/2014
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It is nearly two centuries since the first quarto of Hamlet was rediscovered, yet there is still no consensus about its relationship to the second quarto. Indeed, the first quarto, the least frequently read Hamlet, has been dismissed as "corrupt," "inferior" or "a mutilated corpse," even though in performance it has been described as "the absolute dynamo behind the play." Currently one hypothesis dominates explanations about the quartos' interrelationship. In its simplest form this hypothesis supposes that the first quarto (published 1603) was reconstructed from memory by one or more actors who had performed minor roles in a version of the second quarto (published 1604-5). The present study reports on a detailed linguistic reassessment of scholars' principal arguments for memorial reconstruction. The evidence - including a three way comparison between the underlying French source in Les Histoires Tragiques and the two quartos, the informal features, specific grammatical aspects, and a precise analysis of an actual, documented memorial reconstruction in 1779 - does not support the dominant hypothesis. Instead the cumulative evidence suggests that the earliest scholars to examine the first quarto were right: the 1603 Hamlet came first, and the second quarto is a substantial, later revision.

Publisher: McFarland & Co Inc
ISBN: 9780786478873
Number of pages: 256
Weight: 363 g
Dimensions: 229 x 152 x 18 mm

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