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The Changeling (Revels plays) [Unknown Binding]

Thomas Middleton , William Rowley
3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Kindle Edition 3.60  
Hardcover 17.91  
Paperback 3.99  
Unknown Binding --  
Unknown Binding, 1958 --  

Product details

  • Unknown Binding: 140 pages
  • Publisher: Methuen (1958)
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B001OHLOL2
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)

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Customer Reviews

3.8 out of 5 stars
3.8 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Things Falling Apart 10 Nov 2011
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Dark, powerful, and unsettling, Middleton and Rowley's 'The Changeling' is a tale of jealousy, unrequited affections and lust; and thus provides a deeply troubling, and fascinating portrayal of love. The play has two plots, largely separate from one another - the first chronicles the love of Beatrice for Alesmero, a feeling which clashes with her supposed duty to marry Alonzo de Piracquo; and she manipulates a servant, De Flores, who possess a great, unrequited love for Beatrice, to put Alsemero out of the picture. The other plot poses similarly worrying questions about the darker side of love, with the esteemed doctor, Alibius, locking up his young and beautiful wife Isabella, and trying to test her faithfulness by plying her with his contacts, who appear in disguise. Both of these plots have a good narrative thread, and are engaging. The tale of De Flores is one of the best evocations of obsessive love of Renaissance literature, and his asides to himself, provide perhaps his best and most revealing dialogue. Elsewhere, the tale of Alibius and Isabella is enjoyable and raises some interesting questions, but her meetings with Albius' friends disguised as a fool and a madman, respectively, do begin to drag after a while.

Despite the enjoyable and gripping nature of 'The Changeling', there are a few flaws in the play. The faked conversations between Lollio and Alibius contacts, to try and convince Isabella of their legitimacy, take up far too much of the play, and begin to distract from the action of that plot. Similarly, Beatrice and Diaphanta's own sub-plot takes away a bit too much focus from the main action. Still, these are relatively minor complaints of a play which is dramatic, darkly vibrant, and which brings forth some of the most powerful characters of the period's literature, in Beatrice and De Flores. For those who like their drama brooding, bloody and complex, 'The Changeling' will provide a very worthwhile read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Good Read 24 Aug 2009
This play by Thomas Middleton and William Rowley - who collaborated on a lot of different plays it is believed with quite a lot of playwrights is one for those who are into Jacobean tragedies. The play itself has as well as the main plot which is the tragedy, a sub-plot that is comical.

The sub-plot is about a man not trusting his young wife and having her installed in the madhouse where he works. The main plot is about Beatrice who doesn't want to marry the man her father has chosen for her. Indeed Beatrice is herself a femme fatale. Beatrice lusts after another man and using a man who is obsessed with her she has the man her marriage is arranged with murdered - thus setting his brother on a course of revenge.

A story of madness, lust and sexual passion which comes across in the script there is also a psychological depth here that is unusual for the time. If you like something with murder, revenge, blackmail, suicide and passion you really should read this.
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3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An Edition To Be Treasured 31 Aug 2009
Michael Neill's new edition of Middleton and Rowley's 'The Changeling' is a book that accompanies such a brilliant piece of Renaissance drama with the notes, criticism, introduction and analysis that it deserves. On every page of the play, footnotes provide glosses, explanations and references to Middleton and Rowley's writings. The story will still resonate with a modern audience, and, as a fellow reviewer has written, it is a shame that Shakespeare's work often overshadows this, when really it should be read it conjunction with it; the story echoes that of Macbeth, Othello and A Midsummer Night's Dream, as Neill reveals. If you are looking to read 'The Changeling', this is the edition to start with.
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