Tag Archives: history play

‘”Henry VIII’ is an elegy for Shakespeare’s world-altering achievement in poetic drama, and consciously bids farewell to the playwright’s highest powers.”

Henry VIII (All Is True) Act Five By Dennis Abrams ——————————— Act Five:  The new Queen is soon pregnant, but the news only antagonizes the King’s secretary Gardiner, who vows to attack her and Cranmer, Henry’s virtuous Archbishop of Canterbury … Continue reading

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“Men’s evil manners live in brass; their virtues/We write in water.”

Henry VIII (All Is True) Act Four By Dennis Abrams —————————- Act Four:  The coronation of Anne takes place with great ceremony, but her triumph cruelly coincides with Katherine’s decline. Lying sick at Kimbolton, Katherine has a vision of celestial … Continue reading

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“And when he falls, he falls like Lucifer/Never to hope again.”

Henry VIII (All Is True) Act Three By Dennis Abrams —————————– Act Three:  The case stalls until Katherine decides to relent following a visit from Wolsey and Campeius. But a further hold-up occurs when deceitful letters sent from Wolsey to … Continue reading

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“It seems the marriage with his brother’s wife/Has crept too near his conscience.” “No, his conscience/Has crept too near another lady.”

Henry VIII (All Is True) Act Two By Dennis Abrams —————————————– Act Two:  As Buckingham heads to his execution, rumors begin circulating that Henry plans to divorce his wife Katherine with Wolsey’s approval, and in fact Cardinal Campeius has traveled … Continue reading

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“I come no more to make you laugh. Things now/That bear a weighty and serious brow,/Sad, high, and working, full of state and woe…”

Henry VIII (All Is True) Act One By Dennis Abrams —————————— MAJOR CHARACTERS PROLOGUE AND EPILOGUE King Henry VIII of England Katherine of Aragon, Henry’s wife, soon to be divorced Anne Boleyn, Katherine’s maid-of-honor and Henry’s soon to be second … Continue reading

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“The effect for the reader is one of a rich and sumptuous ceremony.”

Henry VIII (or All Is True) An Introduction By Dennis Abrams ——————————– Written in collaboration with John Fletcher, Henry VIII (or All Is True) is one of Shakespeare’s most ostentatiously spectacular works – Coleridge called it a “show play.” And … Continue reading

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“We have almost as great an affection for Imogen as she had for Posthumus; and she deserves it better. Of all Shakespeare’s women she is perhaps the most tender and the most artless.”

Cymbeline Act Three, Part Two By Dennis Abrams —————————— From Bloom: “Posthumus, even as an ideogram, is no fun. Shakespeare knew that a play must give pleasure, yet he portrays Posthumus as a very painful character, whose name refers both … Continue reading

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