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The Two Gentlemen Of Verona by William…

The Two Gentlemen Of Verona

by William Shakespeare

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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This is one of Shakespeare's earlier comedies in which two couples must navigate the ins and outs of love and courtship. Julia and Proteus are completely in love in Verona. Proteus's best friend, Valentine, travels to Milan, and falls in love with Silvia. When Proteus joins him there, he also falls in love with Silvia and betrays his friend. Julia disguises herself as a boy, travels to Milan, and discovers Proteus's infidelity. Since it's a comedy and not a tragedy, everything works out in the end for the couples.

This is a fun play, but despite the complicated plot, it's much simpler than his later plays. You can see how Shakespeare matured as he gained more experience as a writer. There were also quite a few hilarious moments in the play, mainly when the servants were around. ( )
  AmandaL. | Jan 16, 2016 |
I need to think over this play but my first thought is that I would have liked it more if the ending hadn't been so rushed. It didn't strike me as very believable that Valentine would forgive Proteus so quickly.

I also watched a performance of this play on YouTube as I read: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iWEifTpIsn8 ( )
  leslie.98 | Jun 22, 2015 |
While "The Two Gentlemen of Verona" is not considered one of William Shakespeare's greatest works, I still found it to be a pretty enjoyable play. It was one of the bard's earlier comedies so much of it is used again later in this other, stronger works.

The story follows Proteus and Valentine, two gentlemen who fall in love with ladies and troubles ensue. There is the typical Shakespeare disguise thrown in for good measure too.

This play is pretty readable and was fairly amusing. The ending was kind of forced and wrapped everything up a little too prettily, but other wise I liked this one. ( )
  amerynth | Dec 25, 2013 |
One rates Shakespeare plays to acknowledge that in art, there are varying responses to the same work.
For the drama, "Is this the right director and cast, are the costumes correct, did the spirit of the author's original intent come through?"
there's a different set of criteria for single poems, or paintings. Some modest thoughts follow.
This is early Shakespeare, and quite readable, but a test bed for a lot of better stuff that came later. Not many famous quotes/clichés in this one, but a workable script.
Read seven times. ( )
  DinadansFriend | Dec 20, 2013 |
This is an interesting play in the world of Shakespeare, though not one of his strongest. It is assumed to be one of his first plays. It has one of his smallest casts and it contains one of the biggest jerks in the whole of Shakespearean literature.

The two gentlemen of the title are Valentine and Proteus, best friends living in Verona. One of the two, Proteus, is deeply in love with a woman named Julia. The other, Valentine, is sent to Milan at his father’s bidding, where he falls in love with the Duke’s daughter, Silvia.

The horrid Proteus follows Valentine and despite swearing his undying love to Julia, he quickly falls in love with Silvia. Not only is he betraying Julia with this infatuation, he is betrays his best friend. He is a selfish and horrible man and it’s hard to understand why Julia would remain true to him.

My favorite scene in the play is between Julia and Silvia. The women find common ground where Silvia expresses her disgust with Proteus for abandoning the woman he swore to love. She had no idea that she was telling this to that same woman and it touches Julia deeply.

The play shares a dozen similarities with Shakespeare’s later work. It has a woman following the man she loves and meeting him in disguise when he falls for someone new from All’s Well That Ends Well. It has Thurio, a useless lover picked by the girl’s family ala Paris from Romeo and Juliet. It also has a bit from Twelfth Night with a woman pretending to be the male servant of the man she loves. These elements don’t work well together to make a great play, but each bit is an interesting plot point that is used more successfully in a later play.

BOTTOM LINE: This play is definitely a precursor to some of the great work that came later, but it doesn’t have the strongest plot. It contains hilarious puns and beautiful lines. Unfortunately the flip-flopping Proteus’ happy ending is not satisfying to audiences and the play is rarely preformed live.

“She is mine own,
And I as rich in having such a jewel
As twenty seas, if all their sand were pearl,
The water nectar, and the rocks pure gold.” ( )
  bookworm12 | May 15, 2013 |
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» Add other authors (59 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
William Shakespeareprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Brissaud, PierreIllustratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Brooke, C. F. TuckerEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Cross, Wilbur L.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Evans, BertrandEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Harrison, G. B.Editorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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First words
Cease to persuade, my loving Proteus;
Home-keeping youth have ever homely wits;
Were't not affection chains thy tender days
To the sweet glances of thy honour'd love, I rather would entreat thy company
To see the wonders of the world abroad,
Than, living dully sluggardiz'd at home,
Wear out thy youth with shapeless idleness.
O, how this spring of love resembleth

The uncertain glory of an April day!
That man that hath a tongue, I say, is no man,

If with his tongue he cannot win a woman.
Come not within the measure of my wrath.
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0671722956, Mass Market Paperback)

The world's leading center for Shakespeare studies

Each edition includes:

• 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 a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play

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

Essay by Jeffrey Masten

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:09:46 -0400)

(see all 6 descriptions)

One of the early and finest achievements of Shakespeare, this classic romantic parody has been enhanced in this Folger Library Edition by introductions to Shakespeare's language, illustrations from the Folger collection, scene-by-scene plot summaries, and explanatory notes.… (more)

» see all 3 descriptions

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Average: (3.34)
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2 15
2.5 6
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3.5 18
4 35
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2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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Penguin Australia

2 editions of this book were published by Penguin Australia.

Editions: 0140714618, 0141016620

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