Also included in this edition are excerpts from a variety of literary source materials (including Geoffrey on Monmouth’s Historia Regum Britanniae, the anonymous True Chronicle Historie of King Leir, and Samuel Harsnett’s A Declaration of Egregious Popish Impostures); material on the historical Annesley case that raised many of the same issues as does Shakespeare’s play; and the happy ending from Nahum Tate’s version of the play, which held the stage for 150 years after its first performance in 1681.
Contributing Editor Craig Walker is Associate Professor of Drama at Queen’s University and is the author of The Buried Astrolabe: Canadian Dramatic Imagination and Western Tradition (McGill-Queen's University Press, 2001).
A young man from a small provincial town moves to London in the late 1580s and, in a remarkably short time, becomes the greatest playwright not of his age alone but of all time. How is an achievement of this magnitude to be explained? Stephen Greenblatt brings us down to earth to see, hear, and feel how an acutely sensitive and talented boy, surrounded by the rich tapestry of Elizabethan life, could have become the world’s greatest playwright.