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King Lear (The New Folger Library…
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King Lear (The New Folger Library Shakespeare) (edition 2004)

by William Shakespeare, Paul Werstine (Editor), Barbara A. Mowatt (Editor)

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8,88375336 (4.08)345
Member:ncgraham
Title:King Lear (The New Folger Library Shakespeare)
Authors:William Shakespeare
Other authors:Paul Werstine (Editor), Barbara A. Mowatt (Editor)
Info:Simon & Schuster (2004), Edition: 1, Mass Market Paperback, 384 pages
Collections:Read in 2012 (inactive), Unowned
Rating:****1/2
Tags:'12, Classics, Inspired an opera (or two), Drama, Own in collection, Brit lit, 17th cent, Watched the movie(s), Tragic destiny, Tragedy, School, Need to watch or rewatch the movie

Work details

King Lear by William Shakespeare

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One of my favorite Shakespeare plays. King Lear asks his daughters who truly loves him, and the oldest two spin golden words of flattery while the third one cannot do so. Lear abandons his third daughter and this opens the story to the madness that follows. Brilliantly imagined characters and psyches. Worth it ( )
  Rosenstern | Sep 14, 2014 |
In my reading I try to heed [a:C.S. Lewis|1069006|C.S. Lewis|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1367519078p2/1069006.jpg]'s caution, that "an unliterary man may be defined as someone who reads books once only," by finding a balance between feeding my neverending hunger for new books and devoting time to rereading the best ones. [a:Shakespeare|947|William Shakespeare|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1360741702p2/947.jpg]'s [b:King Lear|603258|King Lear|William Shakespeare|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/books/1176209129s/603258.jpg|2342136] is one of "the best ones," which I reread once every year or two, and which I find grows and deepens with each rereading. This time I picked it up directly after reading [a:Stephen Greenblatt|4194881|Stephen Greenblatt|http://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1302117239p2/4194881.jpg]'s engaging cultural biography [b:Will in the World|161077|Will in the World How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare|Stephen Greenblatt|/assets/nocover/60x80.png|1221914]. And I wasn't disappointed with what is proven again and again to be one of Shakespeare's greatest. I might even Fool-ishly say "Whoop, Jug, I love this play." Certainly there is nothing better in English literature than Act IV, Scene 7. King Lear includes some of Shakespeare's most famous lines--the most infamous of which is Cornwall's "Out, vile jelly" (III,vii). The play also features tremendous examples of Shakespearean insults--most notably, Kent's speech against Oswald: OSWALD  What does thou know me for? KENT  A knave, a rascal, an eater of broken meats; a base, proud, shallow, beggarly, three-suited, hundred-pound, filthy worsted-stocking knave; a lily-livered, action-taking, whoreson, glass-gazing, superserviceable, finical rogue; one-trunk-inheriting slave; one that wouldst be a bawd in way of good service, and art nothing but the composition of a knave, beggar, coward, pander, and the son and heir of a mongrel bitch; one whom I will beat into clamorous whining if thou deny'st the least syllable of thy addition. (II,ii) There are a few disappointments with the play, things that are inexplicable or that should happen in plain view rather than offstage. The biggest example is the death of Gloucester and the revealing (to Gloucester) of Edgar. I find it very unfair that we don't get to see this climactic moment. The other strange thing in the play is the disappearance of Lear's Fool. What happens to him? There is no explanation for his vanishing act halfway through the play. King Lear is a heavy, weighty play from the beginning--and mysteriously so, as Shakespeare hides from the audience the reasons behind the love contest and division of the kingdom. From the many prophetic statments in Act I--such as Gloucester's assurance that "Machinations, hollowness, treachery, and all ruinous disorders follow us disquietly to our graves" (I,ii)--to the final act, which continuously spins out Edgar's maxim, "The worst is not so long as we can say 'This is the worst'" (IV,i), we are kept aware that what's in focus is not the particular trajectory of Lear, his family, and his kingdom, but the big questions for all of us about life itself. Recommended film versions: King Lear (Grigori Kosintsev; Russian; 1971)
Ran (Akira Kurosawa; Japanese; 1985) ( )
  ethnosax | Aug 8, 2014 |
Read during Fall 2001
  amyem58 | Jul 11, 2014 |
Excellent work. I saw this performed at the Great River Shakespeare Festival in Winona, MN. Very powerful performance. I liked this edition in particular because it explained the nuances of the language right next to the original text. That plus the performance made this easier to understand. ( )
  jmcgarry2011 | May 9, 2014 |
King Lear
William Shakespeare
Thursday, March 27, 2014

In my Shakespeare class, senior year of college, the professor thought this was the play central to understanding Shakespeare. The tale is familiar; Lear gives up his Kingdom to avoid the cares of ruling, dividing it among his daughters. Cordelia, the most honest, points out that she owes him a duty but also owes her fiancé, the King of France, love and affection. Lear casts her out, because she is not as effusive as her sisters, Regan and Goneril. Goneril, hosts the King first, instructs her servants to ignore his knights, and when he goes to Regan, she sends a letter to ensure he is cast out there as well. Lear goes mad in a storm, succored by Kent, a loyal knight whose advice was unwelcome in the initial scene, and by Edgar, the son of the Earl of Gloucester, who has been usurped by the machinations of Edmund, a bastard son, and who is the lover of Regan and Goneril. Cordelia brings an army to rescue Lear, but is defeated, and in the schemes of Edmund is killed in captivity. Regan dies, poisoned by Goneril jealous of Edmund, Goneril dies by suicide after Edmund is killed by Edgar, Gloucester dies after a blinding, and Lear dies of heart attack. Lear's speeches while mad are the essence of the mature understanding of the human situation
"Striving to better, oft' we mar what's well"
"Let me kiss your hand!" Lear, in response "Let me wipe it first, it smells of mortality"
Leather bound, Franklin Library, Tragedies of Shakespeare ($34.60 4/28/2012) ( )
  neurodrew | May 5, 2014 |
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» Add other authors (227 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Shakespeare, Williamprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brissaud, PierreIllustratorsecondary authorsome 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
Ribner, IrvingEditorsecondary 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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Epigraph
Dedication
First words
I thought the king had more affected the Duke of Albany than Cornwall.
Quotations
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."
Last words
(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)

(summary from another edition)

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Editions: 0140714766, 0141012293

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Editions: 1456104691, 144987682X

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