Monday, November 17, 2014

Cymbeline - Summary


The fingers of the powers above do tune
The harmony of this peace.

Cymbeline was said to be written near the end of Shakespeare’s life. For my money (keeping in mind that I only have five other plays to compare to thus far) it seems that he still had a pretty good handle on this whole playwriting thing even at this relatively late date. As an aside, it’s interesting to note that he did all this in about five decades, which makes me want to ramp things up a bit here in my own fifth decade.

Even though I’m only six plays in thus far I’ve noticed that certain plot devices are rather common. There’s the forbidden love thing, of course, which old Will is renowned for. There’s the one about the guy who bets that his beloved will remain truthful to him when her fidelity is put to the test. There’s also that bit about switching identities and cavorting about in disguise, with women dressing up as men a rather common device.

All of which and more made for a right entertaining piece of work that I placed just a smidgen below Antony and Cleopatra. About the only thing that put me off a bit was how it seemed – kind of like in a Hallmark movie – the author seemed to be doing backflips to make sure that everything ended happily.

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