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TL;DR: Shakespeare must have got the name “Setebos” for Caliban’s god from Antonio Pigafetta via Richard Willes’ The History of Travel in the West and East Indies (1577), but Bergreen’s claim that the character of Caliban is “inspired in part” by Pigafetta’s description of a captive Patagonian is speculation. Bergreen’s case Bergreen has overstated the case ...


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The Tempest is one of a small number of Shakespeare plays for which there is no obvious source for the plot. (The others are A Midsummer Night's Dream and Love's Labour's Lost.) When discussing sources of inspiration, critics mainly list Montaigne's essay "Of cannibals" (for Gonzalo's speech in Act 2, scene 1), travel writing, especially the "...


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