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King Lear by William Shakespeare

King Lear

by William Shakespeare

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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Showing 1-5 of 67 (next | show all)
Another re-read. Still brilliant. ( )
  FBerger | Mar 12, 2014 |
When people want to rank Shakespeare's plays, usually Hamlet comes out as number one. This, in my experience, is the only other of his plays that I have seen mentioned as his greatest. If I were to rank his plays solely based upon their impact upon the world, I would probably agree with the usual placement of Hamlet as number one. However, were I to rank them based upon their impact on me, Lear gets the nod. Lear accurately and horrifyingly portrays the primal nature of man like few other works of literature; the only other to come to my mind is Lord of the Flies. Yet it's more than that; Lord of the Flies can afford to ignore the effects of sexual attraction and familial ties upon our nature, but Lear (the work, not the character) meets these head-on and uses them to devastating effect. This play alone would guarantee Shakespeare a place as one of the greatest English authors. With the rest of his body of work, there's no question that he is the greatest. ( )
  bradgers | Feb 6, 2014 |
There is an abundance of reviews, essays, opinions and prejudicial comments available when talking about Shakespeare. It would seem that the man was incapable of jotting down a bad sentence, let alone a bad story, at least, that's the veil they hand you when calling Shakespeare, morbidly referred to as 'Willy' by those who know the first three lines of Hamlet's 'to be or not to be'-speech, 'the greatest writer of all time'.

In this review, I shall not beshame my opinion by calling anyone Willy, Shakey, Quilly or by using the word 'Shakespearean'. 'King Lear' is not the strongest play in the exuberant repertoire of Shakespeare. It is, however, one of the more reader-friendly ones, which means you don't need a detailed map of familial relations to follow the plot. The story of King Lear relies heavily on stories that already existed at the time, but had only served as traditional folk tales or as long forgotten myths. For those who are oblivious to the plot - King Lear wants to divide his kingdom between his three daughters, Goneril, Regan and Cordelia. Whereas Goneril and Regan go out of their proverbial ways to flatter their father, Cordelia remains reticent (but honest). Which, of course, is not much appreciated. What follows resembles the story of Oedipus, that other Blind King who slowly wandered into his own destruction. Gloucester, one of the side characters, actually does lose his eyes.

'King Lear', in the end, is a reflection on power and what one will do to achieve it. Even though it might be a bit stale nowadays, it still holds true to its message, and for those who enjoy Shakespeare's husky metaphor, this play will provide you with all the ammunition needed. ( )
  WorldInColour | Oct 12, 2013 |
I enjoy the Folger editions of Shakespeare - to each his own in this matter. Some find Lear to be overblown, I am tremendously moved by it, and haunted by the image of the old man howling across the barren heaths with his dead daughter in his arms. 'I am bound upon a wheel of fire, that mine own tears Do scald like molten lead.' Lear 4.7.52-54 ( )
  Ron_Peters | Aug 22, 2013 |
Thoughts on the play:
-A classic tragedy in which almost everyone dies at the end.
-I really didn't have much sympathy for Lear. He acted incredibly foolishly, not just once in turning his back on Cordelia, but many times.
-At first, Goneral seemed to be acting reasonably. If Lear had restrained his knights, much of the tragedy would have been lessened. (This was one of the foolish actions of Lear's I mentioned above.) However, as the plot moves on, she is revealed as being more and more terrible.
-Edmund struck me as the villain, and he also acted as a catalyst for villainy. So I found the scene at near the end after he & Edgar had dueled a bit hard to believe - after everything, Edgar just forgives him!?!
-I was shocked when Cornwall plucks out Gloucester's eyes. I didn't know that was going to happen! Gloucester struck me as the true tragic hero, rather than Lear. Both of them cast off deserving children, but Gloucester realized his error and suffered for it. It wasn't clear to me that Lear recognized his own faults the way Gloucester did. ( )
  leslie.98 | Jul 23, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (228 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Shakespeare, Williamprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brooke, C. F. TuckerEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Buck, Philo M.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Foakes, R.A.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Günther, FrankTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Hallqvist, Britt G.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harbage, AlfredEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harrison, G. B.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kellogg, BrainerdEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Kittredge, George LymanEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lamar, Virginia A.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Mowat, Barbara A.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Muir, KennethEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Noguchi, IsamuIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Orgel, StephenEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Radspieler, HansEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Ridley, M. R.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Weis, RenéEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Werstine, PaulEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wieland, Christoph Martin.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wolfit, DonaldIntroductionsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Wright, Louis B.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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Ran (1985IMDb)
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First words
I thought the king had more affected the Duke of Albany than Cornwall.
Although the last, not least.
Nothing will come of nothing.
How sharper than a serpent's tooth it is

To have a thankless child!
Oh, that way madness lies; let me shun that.
The worst is not

So long as we can say, "This is the worst."
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(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
This entry is for the COMPLETE "King Lear" only. Do not combine it with abridgements, simplified adaptations or modernizations, Cliffs Notes or similar, or videorecordings of performances, and please separate any that are here.

It should go without saying that this work should also not be combined with any other plays or combinations of plays.
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 074348276X, Mass Market Paperback)

Folger Shakespeare Library

The world's leading center for Shakespeare studies

Each edition includes:

• Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play

• Full explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play

• Scene-by-scene plot summaries

• A key to famous lines and phrases

• An introduction to reading Shakespeare's language

• An essay by an outstanding scholar providing a modern perspective on the play

• Illustrations from the Folger Shakespeare Library's vast holdings of rare books

Essay by Susan Snyder

The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, D.C., is home to the world's largest collection of Shakespeare's printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:42:25 -0400)

(see all 8 descriptions)

An ageing king makes a capricious decision to divide his realm among his three daughters according to the love they express for him. When the youngest daughter refuses to take part in this charade, she is banished, leaving the king dependent on her manipulative and untrustworthy sisters.… (more)

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Seven editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

Two editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140714766, 0141012293

Beacon Press

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Yale University Press

An edition of this book was published by Yale University Press.

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