Title

Shakespeare's Dramatic Treatment of the Sources of "Richard III" and "Macbeth"

Publication Year

1962

Keywords

drama, literature, Shakespeare, dramatic technique, playwriting, history

Disciplines

Comparative Literature | Dramatic Literature, Criticism and Theory | English Language and Literature | European History | Literature in English, British Isles

Abstract

William Shakespeare's plays of King Richard III of England and King Macbeth of Scotland are based on the semi-historical account of the second edition of Raphael Holinshed's Chronicles of England, Scotland, and Ireland, written in 1587. Holinshed, an accredited historian in Elizabethan times, is today considered a story-teller rather than a critic, for he misses the point of the more distinguished of his sources and generally uses any material which reads like history. Thus, Holinshed gives Shakespeare not so much history as myth--the tale of England's past as it had crystallized in the English mind.

Department 1 Awarding Honors Status

English: Literature and Writing

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