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Richard II

By: William Shakespeare

Richard II by William Shakespeare is the first of eight plays that portray a historically-informed version of the War of the Roses - beginning in about 1365 and ending with Richard III's death in 1485.Edited by J. M. Smallheer and John Gonzalez. (Summary by Cori) Characters: Narration, Keeper, and Lord - read by Annie Coleman King Richard II and First Servant - read by Peter Yearsley Northumberland and Gaunt - read by Chip Bolingbroke - read by Kayvan Sylvan Aumerle - re...

History, Tragedy

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Richard III

By: William Shakespeare

Richard III is an early history play probably written and performed around 1592-93. It is the culmination of Shakespeare's earlier three plays about Henry VI, and chronicles the bloody career of Richard, Duke of Gloucester. As the play opens, the Wars of the Roses are over, King Edward IV (Richard's brother) is on the throne, and all is ostensibly well. The problem? Richard wants to be king - and he'll stop at nothing to realize his ambition. (Summary by Elizabeth Klett)

Play, Tragedy

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Cymbeline

By: William Shakespeare

Cymbeline is one of Shakespeare's late romances, which (like The Tempest and The Winter's Tale) combines comedy and tragedy. Imogen, the daughter of King Cymbeline of Britain, angers her father when she marries Posthumus, a worthy but penniless gentleman. The King banishes Posthumus, who goes to Rome, where he falls prey to the machinations of Iachimo, who tries to convince him that Imogen will be unfaithful. Meanwhile, the Queen (Imogen's stepmother) plots against her s...

Play

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Merchant of Venice, The

By: William Shakespeare

William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice was probably written between 1596 and 1598, and was printed with the comedies in the First Folio of 1623. Bassanio, an impoverished gentleman, uses the credit of his friend, the merchant Antonio, to borrow money from a wealthy Jew, Shylock. Antonio pledges to pay Shylock a pound of flesh if he defaults on the loan, which Bassanio will use to woo a rich heiress, Portia. A subplot concerns the elopement of Shylock's daughter Jes...

Comedy, Play

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Measure For Measure

By: William Shakespeare

Generally considered one of Shakespeare's problem plays, Measure for Measure examines the ideas of sin and justice. Duke Vincentio turns Vienna's rule over to the corrupt Angelo, who sentences Claudio to death for having impregnated a woman before marriage. His sister Isabella, a novice nun, pleads for her brother's life, only to be told that he will be spared if she agrees to relinquish her virginity to Angelo. (Summary by wildemoose)

Comedy, Play

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Winter's Tale, The

By: William Shakespeare

Mad with jealousy, King Leontes of Sicilia orders his best friend Polixenes killed, his child abandoned, and his wife put on trial for adultery. Sixteen years later, Perdita, raised as a shepherd's daughter, falls in love with Polixenes's royal son and returns to her father's kingdom. (Temporary summary by wildemoose)

Comedy, Romance, Tragedy

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Timon of Athens

By: William Shakespeare

The Life of Timon of Athens is a play by William Shakespeare about the fortunes of an Athenian named Timon (and probably influenced by the philosopher of the same name, as well), generally regarded as one of his most obscure and difficult works. Originally grouped with the tragedies, it is generally considered such, but some scholars group it with the problem plays. The play has caused considerable debate among scholars. It is oddly constructed, with several lacunae (gap...

Play

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Coriolanus

By: William Shakespeare

Shakespeare was passionately interested in the history of Rome, as is evident from plays like Titus Andronicus, Julius Caesar, and Antony and Cleopatra. His tragedy Coriolanus was probably written around 1605-07, and dramatizes the rise and fall of a great Roman general, Caius Martius (later surnamed Coriolanus because of his military victory at Corioli). This play is unusual in that it provides a strong voice for the ordinary citizens of Rome, who begin the play rioting...

Play, Tragedy

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Twelfth Night (version 2)

By: William Shakespeare

Shakespeare's great festive comedy, probably written and first performed around 1601, follows the adventures of twins Viola and Sebastian, who are separated from each other by a shipwreck. Viola, believing her brother dead, disguises herself as a page in order to serve the lovesick Duke Orsino, who has been rejected by the Countess Olivia. The ensemble cast includes a roster of wonderfully comic characters: Olivia's drunken uncle Sir Toby Belch, his foolish friend Sir An...

Comedy, Play

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As You Like It

By: William Shakespeare

One of Shakespeare’s most popular plays, As You Like It is a pastoral comedy of mistaken identity, wit, and love. Daughter of a banished duke and forced to flee the court, Rosalind hides in the Forest of Arden disguised as a man. When her true love Orlando also shows up in the forest, she courts him without revealing her identity. Meanwhile, Phebe mistakenly falls in love with her disguise, Silvius pines for Phebe, Jacques philosophizes, and Touchstone makes fun of it al...

Comedy, Play

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Much Ado About Nothing

By: Shakespeare

Description: Much Ado About Nothing is a comedic play by William Shakespeare thought to have been written in 1598 and 1599, as Shakespeare was approaching the middle of his career. The play was included in the First Folio, published in 1623. Much Ado About Nothing is generally considered one of Shakespeare's best comedies, because it combines elements of robust hilarity with more serious meditations on honor, shame, and court politics. Like As You Like It and Twelfth Nig...

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Two Gentlemen of Verona, The

By: William Shakespeare

The Two Gentlemen of Verona is the earliest comedy written by Shakespeare (and possibly his first play), probably written around 1590-91. It focuses on two friends, Valentine and Proteus, whose friendship is disrupted by their mutual passion for the lovely Silvia. Proteus jilts Julia in order to pursue Silvia; she responds by enlisting the help of her maid Lucetta to dress as a boy and go after Proteus. The play also includes some wonderfully comic supporting characters,...

Comedy, Play

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Comedy of Errors, The

By: William Shakespeare

The Comedy of Errors is one of William Shakespeare's earliest plays, believed to have been written between 1592 and 1594. It is his shortest and one of his most farcical comedies, with a major part of the humour coming from slapstick and mistaken identity, in addition to puns and word play. The Comedy of Errors tells the story of two sets of identical twins that were accidentally separated at birth. Antipholus of Syracuse and his servant, Dromio of Syracuse, arrive in Ep...

Comedy

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Taming of the Shrew, The

By: William Shakespeare

The Taming of the Shrew is one of Shakespeare's earliest comedies, and was inspired by classical Roman comedy and the Italian commedia dell'arte. Baptista Minola, a rich gentleman of Padua, has two daughters: Katherina, renowned for her sharp tongue, and Bianca, who is sought after by multiple suitors. Baptista decides that Bianca cannot marry until her elder sister finds a husband. Enter Petruchio, who has come to wive it wealthily in Padua, and who is convinced by Bian...

Play, Comedy, Romance

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Troilus and Cressida

By: William Shakespeare

Troilus and Cressida is Shakespeare's problem play about the Trojan War. As the opening Chorus tells us, the play begins in the middle of the epic conflict, and counterpoints the drama of battle with the romance of the title characters. Just as Agamemnon and his Greek forces (particularly the smooth-tongued Ulysses) attempt to woo the invincible Achilles to resume fighting on their side, the Trojan go-between Pandarus tries to bring together Troilus, a son of King Priam,...

Play

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Shakespeare's Sonnets (version 2)

By: William Shakespeare

Shakespeare's Sonnets, or simply The Sonnets, comprise a collection of 154 poems in sonnet form written by William Shakespeare that deal with such themes as love, beauty, politics, and mortality. The poems were probably written over a period of several years. (Summary from wikipedia)

Romance, Tragedy, Poetry

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Hamlet

By: William Shakespeare
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The Tragedy of King Lear

By: Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616; Craig, William James, 1843-1906
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The Tempest

By: William Shakespeare

Excerpt: The Tempest by William Shakespeare assumes any responsibility for the material contained within the document or for the file as an electronic transmission, in any way.

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King Henry Iv. A Tragedy. In Five Acts

By: Shakespeare, William, 1564-1616

Infrared spectra ; Absorption spectra ; Radiation

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