The Ring and the Book

The Floating Press
3
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Browning's dramatic poem The Ring and the Book narrates the trial of a Roman for the death of his wife and her parents. He suspected his wife of having an affair with a cleric. The man appeals his sentence, though unsuccessfully. The poem is narrated by many different voices, each adding their version of events to the whole in a series of monologues.
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About the author

Robert Browning was the son of a well-to-do clerk in the Bank of England. He was educated by private tutors and from his own reading in his father's library and elsewhere. Browning's first publication was Pauline (1833). The work made no stir at all. The following year Browning went to St. Petersburg and from there to Italy. On his return to England in 1835 he published Paracelsus, a dramatic poem based on the life of the fifteenth-century magician and alchemist. Browning next attempted a play. Strafford was the first of the poet's dramatic failures; it ran only five nights at Covent Garden in 1836. An obscure and difficult poem, Sordello, appeared in 1840. It did a great deal toward giving Browning a reputation for being unintelligible and for limiting the circles of his readers. The most important event in Browning's life occurred in 1846, when he married Elizabeth Barrett. The marriage brought a new lightness and openness of voice to Browning's verse during the next 21 years, resulting in the great dramatic monologues of Men and Women in 1855 and the epic The Ring and the Book in 1867. It is not that these are the most beautiful poems of the Victorian Age, but they are the most perceptive; they reveal more clearly the men and women who speak the monologues, and the poet who conceived them, than any comparable works of the century. In the last two decades of his life Browning produced only a few great poems but much were grotesque and fantastic. He turned, too, to translations and transcriptions from the Greek tragedies; in spite of some powerful passages, these were not highly successful Robert Browning died in Italy in 1889. His body lies in Westminster Abbey.

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Additional Information

Publisher
The Floating Press
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Published on
Jun 1, 2009
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Pages
815
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ISBN
9781775415664
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Features
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Language
English
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Genres
Poetry / General
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Content Protection
This content is DRM protected.
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Read Aloud
Available on Android devices
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Eligible for Family Library

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The Ring and the Book is a long dramatic narrative poem, and, more specifically, a verse novel, of 21,000 lines. The book tells the story of a murder trial in Rome in 1698, whereby an impoverished nobleman, Count Guido Franceschini, is found guilty of the murders of his young wife Pompilia Comparini and her parents, having suspected his wife was having an affair with a young cleric, Giuseppe Caponsacchi. Dramatis Personae is a poetry collection. The poems are dramatic, with a wide range of narrators. The narrator is usually in a situation that reveals to the reader some aspect of his personality. Dramatic Lyrics is a collection of English poems, entitled Bells and Pomegranates. It is most famous as the first appearance of Browning's poem The Pied Piper of Hamelin, but also contains several of the poet's other best-known pieces, including My Last Duchess, Soliloquy of the Spanish Cloister, Porphyria's Lover… Table of Contents: Introduction: Robert Browning by G.K. Chesterton Collections of Poetry: Bells and Pomegranates No. III: Dramatic Lyrics Bells and Pomegranates No. VII: Dramatic Romances and Lyrics Pauline: A Fragment of a Confession Sordello Asolando Men and Women Dramatis Personae The Ring and the Book Balaustion's Adventure Prince Hohenstiel-Schwangau, Saviour of Society Fifine at the Fair Red Cotton Nightcap Country Aristophanes' Apology The Inn Album Pacchiarotto, and How He Worked in Distemper La Saisiaz and the Two Poets of Croisic Dramatic Idylls Dramatic Idylls: Second Series Christmas-Eve and Easter-Day Jocoseria Ferishtah's Fancies Parleyings with Certain People of Importance in Their Day Robert Browning (1812–1889) was an English poet and playwright whose mastery of dramatic verse, and in particular the dramatic monologue, made him one of the foremost Victorian poets.
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