• Vengeance, Variously: Revenge Before Kyd in Early Elizabethan Drama

    Author(s):
    Bradley Irish (see profile)
    Date:
    2009
    Group(s):
    LLC 16th-Century English, LLC Shakespeare
    Subject(s):
    Renaissance drama, Revenge tragedies, Shakespeare and early modern drama, Shakespeare
    Item Type:
    Article
    Tag(s):
    revenge, kyd
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/M64R9C
    Abstract:
    Though it is a critical commonplace that English revenge tragedy began with Thomas Kyd’s The Spanish Tragedy, there has been little systematic discussion of how revenge fared as a dramatic theme before Kyd’s inaugural work. This essay reexamines the importance of revenge in early Elizabethan drama, by broadly surveying its thematic and rhetorical prominence in the corpus of extant plays that predate Kyd’s tragedy. The prominence of revenge in pre-Kydian drama reveals that The Spanish Tragedy intensifies and systematizes structurally a theme that had for decades already been a well-worn mainstay on the English stage. A study of early dramatic revenge provides the basis for a more contextually sensitive account of revenge tragedy’s origin, and of its larger relationship to contemporary Elizabethan theatre.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    1 year ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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