Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Great Docudramatist of the 16th Century

It is well to remember, in watching any of Shakespeare's histories, that he was always a playwright first. Whenever he had to choose between good drama and good history, drama would win.  And he was working from Holinshed, at least one remove from the primary sources.

Shakespeare was in the business of writing seductive untruths for a living. Remember that when you watch his Henry V, or any of his histories.

1 comment:

bookandsword said...

Its also wise to be suspicious of his settings and atmosphere. Shakespeare's picture of court life is so vivid, but he is perfectly capable of putting chiming clocks in Caesar's Rome or pistols on fifteenth-century battlefields if the mood strikes him.