15 votes

Why did the alexandrine become the "natural" metre for French verse drama, whereas English renaissance drama adopted the iambic pentameter?

There are two parts to this question: why does English use iambic meter while French doesn't, and why does English have 10 syllables in each line of iambic pentameter, while French has 12 syllables ...
user avatar
  • 7,715
9 votes

Why did the alexandrine become the "natural" metre for French verse drama, whereas English renaissance drama adopted the iambic pentameter?

I'm adding my own answer to complement Peter Shor's. In an interview, the Shakespeare scholar Kenneth Muir talks, among other things, about his translations of Racine and Corneille. When asked how he ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
7 votes

Where did Edmond Malone place the Tempest in the chronology of Shakespeare's plays?

"An Attempt to Ascertain the Order in which the Plays Attributed to Shakespeare Were Written" can be found on pages 269 - 346 of the first volume of The Plays of William Shakespeare in Ten ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
6 votes

How were plays in Shakespeare's time advertised?

The questions asks, Or would it have just advertised a new comedy by Shakespeare? Although no play-bills have survived from the English theatre of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, we have a ...
user avatar
  • 39.1k
6 votes
Accepted

How were plays in Shakespeare's time advertised?

During the Elizabethan era, the playhouses had been established outside the city of London in order to avoid being subject to London rules, especially those promoted by puritans who were against the ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
6 votes
Accepted

First English Renaissance play where women disguise as men?

After some more research, I found the answer to my question. According to The Growth Of English Drama by Arnold Wynne (p. 176), [George Peele's play] Sir Clyomon and Sir Clamydes merits a passing ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
5 votes

Where was the first English playhouse outside London built?

I can find in Annals of the Liverpool stage: from the earliest period to the present time from Google books, the following: In June, 1759, the Drury Lane Theatre was opened with the tragedy of The ...
user avatar
  • 7,715
5 votes

How is Hamlet different from a conventional Elizabethan revenge play?

tl;dr It isn't. Hamlet and its contemporaries Hamlet is one of a cluster of similar plays that were tremendously popular on the Elizabethan and Jacobean stage that are now grouped as revenge tragedies....
user avatar
  • 15.3k
5 votes
Accepted

Are there examples of male characters dressing as women in Elizabethan/Jacobean literature?

There's a monograph on male-to-female cross-dressing in this period: Perhaps the most famous instance of a man dressed as a woman in early modern literature is the scene in William Shakespeare’s The ...
user avatar
  • 39.1k
4 votes

Who was the first scholar who claimed that the Ur-Hamlet was influenced by the German play Der bestrafte Brudermord?

The first such claim probably was made in the Wikipedia article you mention. It's a pretty flimsy claim that would collapse under the slightest scrutiny, and there's no evidence that any scholar has ...
user avatar
  • 15.3k
4 votes

How many manuscripts of English Renaissance plays have survived?

The Catalogue of English Literary Manuscripts 1450–1700 (CELM) has a comprehensive list of manuscripts from the period of interest. I sampled some of the authors and I estimate that the catalogue ...
user avatar
  • 39.1k
4 votes

Tudor or Jacobean plays that are sequels to a Shakespeare play?

To my knowledge, the only Elizabethan or Jacobean play that is a sequel to a Shakespeare play is The Woman's Prize, or the Tamer Tamed by John Fletcher, a play that was first performed in 1609 – 1610. ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
3 votes

Relevance to literature of 1623 ban on swearing in England

The English Parliament did pass a ban on swearing in 1623, that much at least is agreed upon by several records: The Statutes Relating to the Ecclesiastical and Eleemosynary Institutions of England, ...
user avatar
  • 6,624
3 votes

How is Hamlet different from a conventional Elizabethan revenge play?

Thomas Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy was immensely popular; not only was it printed ten times between 1592 and 1633 (although only one copy of the 1592 edition has survived), it was also quoted, alluded ...
user avatar
  • 38.1k
2 votes
Accepted

Can three unstressed syllables constitute a substitute foot in Shakespeare?

A foot of three unstressed syllables is called a tribrach. Do tribrachs exist in Shakespeare? I don't know. It is going to be very hard, if not impossible, to find tribrachs in Shakespeare (or any ...
user avatar
  • 7,715
2 votes

Why did the alexandrine become the "natural" metre for French verse drama, whereas English renaissance drama adopted the iambic pentameter?

The traditional distinction between syllabic (French) and metrical (English) verse is misleading. French has long and short vowels (long and short syllables) just like any other language. English ...
user avatar

Only top scored, non community-wiki answers of a minimum length are eligible