The verb ‘drink’ in the sixteenth century part of the Corpus of Early English recipes

Francisco Alonso Almeida

Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria


This paper tries to analyse the syntax and the semantics of the verb drink as evidenced in the texts collected in the Corpus of Early English Recipes for the sixteenth century. Junker et al. (in press, ‘The Semantics and Syntax of Null Complements’) have claimed that the related verb eat should be considered as an intransitive, rather than a transitive form. They come to the conclusion that complementation is not required for this verb, and arguments are optionally added according to communicative needs. My intention here is to see whether this claim can be generalized to other related verbs such as drink in the sixteenth century. For this I will apply corpus linguistics tools to detect and measure syntactic variation. These data are later described and explained both under the framework of functional linguistics and the pragmatic theory of relevance. It is expected that this twofold approach would shed some light on null object licensing.





The anti-catholic discourse in Thomas Scott’s Vox Dei (1623) and Vox Regis (1624): A vehicle for discussion on new models of government

Leticia Álvarez Recio

Universidad de Sevilla


The Anglo-Spanish negotiations for a dynastic alliance which began in 1614 had never been popular among a large section of English Protestants, who considered their monarch should declare a more active commitment to European Calvinism. Such prejudices increased after 1618 when the Bohemian crisis began and James, far from supporting his son in law, the Elector Palatine, decided to secure the Spanish alliance in order to counteract Frederick’s aggression and keep England safe from continental struggles. The monarch, however, could not prevent the increasing public interest in international affairs of many of his subjects, who interpreted the Spanish match as one more stratagem of European Catholic powers against Protestantism. The anti-Catholic mood reached its peak in October 1623, when the Prince of Wales arrived in London after his failed journey to Spain. Londoners viewed his return as a providential sign in favour of Reformed England and welcomed Charles and Buckingham as new Protestant heroes.


This paper analyses the works Vox Dei (1623) and Vox Regis (1624), written by Thomas Scott, one of the most prolific anti-Catholic pamphleteers at the time. In them, Scott develops many of the arguments proposed in parliament in order to persuade James to change his religious and foreign policy. His anti-Catholic attacks vehicle debates on the role of citizens in the commonwealth and more interactive types of government, in opposition to the Crown’s appeal to the Raison d’État and the doctrine of the Divine Right of Kings. Through a number of highly effective visual and rhetorical devices, Scott relates anti-popery to civic consciousness, thus linking his discourse to the humanist tradition and anticipating many of the ideological discussions that would divide the country fifteen years later.




Rewriting Ideologies: Translating Petrarch in Renaissance England

Antonio Ballesteros González



This paper aims at studying in a concise and definite way some of the ideological implications of translating and adapting Petrarchan sonnets in Renaissance England. Taking as a point of departure the role of the translator as it was understood in that specific period of time, attention will be paid to the stylistic, historical and cultural innovations contributed by two relevant English sonneteers when translating Petrarch’s ‘Rima 190’ (‘Una candida cerva sopra l’herba…’) into their native language. Sir Thomas Wyatt the Elder’s ‘Whoso List to Hunt’ and Edmund Spenser’s ‘Sonnet 67’ of the Amoretti constitute relevant examples of how the ongoing process of translation and adaptation conveys noteworthy ideological features provided by the manipulation of the formal and thematic elements of the foreign poem, which are placed and interpreted in a new context.





Diction patterns on the English art song in the Baroque period

Jaime Berrocal Hernández

Escuela Superior de Canto, Madrid


The topic of this paper is taken from the academic curriculum at the High School of Singing in Madrid. English diction has got its profile when words and syllables, consonants and vowels are submitted to musical notes.  Vocal technique will never be completed unless a qualified diction is improved and made bright.         


We have settled down our phonetic and phonological study on four linguistic patterns (script, score, speech and stage) in order to get a synoptic view from different diction registers. A correct singing diction is only attained through deep grounding on applied phonetics. 

The musical literature in the Baroque period is mostly represented by Henry Purcell (1659-1695) who dedicated his short life to musical composition either vocal or instrumental. From one of his best operas ‘King Arthur’ we shall take some extracts to cast an eye on the libretto and single out those diction items that occur when performing the repertoire.




Nemo dat quod non habet’: The role of sermons in the shaping of England’s colonial discourse

Francisco J. Borge

Universidad de Oviedo


Latecomers to the colonial race, and lacking the financial backing other European powers did secure for their entrepreneurs, English merchants and adventurers interested in the New World were forced to rely on discursive strategies that should convince private investors of the profit of enterprises which, by the end of the 16th century, were far from rendering any material return. Taking a leading role in the formulation of these rhetorical strategies, Puritan preachers, both from the pulpit and from the pages of broadly circulated pamphlets, framed their sermons around the notion that the lack characterizing English colonial experience up to that moment could and should be compensated for. If the purses of potential investors in colonial projects seemed to be empty, this was not necessarily true of an emerging colonial ideology which, through its preachers, promised to offer spiritual comfort and thus redress material lack.


English colonial discourse predated the actual settlement of English colonies in the New World. Heralded by the intense promotional labor of a Richard Hakluyt who used the printed page as the pulpit from which to reach a large audience, in the early years of the 17th century many other Protestant preachers entered the payrolls of trading companies as propagandists advocating investment in North American enterprises. Much like Hakluyt himself, men like William Crashaw, William Symonds, Alexander Whitaker, Patrick Copland, Robert Cushman, and John Donne used their sermons to explain why Englishmen were bound to take an active role in the national colonial project. This paper explores the key role of sermons in the shaping of early English colonial discourse, primarily focusing on the one William Crashaw delivered before the recently constituted Council of Virginia in 1610, definitely the turning point in England’s attitude towards the colonial enterprise.




Macbeth's kitchen

Maurizio Calbi

Universitá di Salerno, Italy



“Bones and guts, fish-heads, knob ends of the black pudding, skins of haggis”: In Peter Moffat’s intriguing adaptation of Macbeth, which was first shown as part of the BBC Shakespeare Retold series in 2005, these are some of the food debris the witches-turned-bin men scoop up after the “hurly-burly” of a day in Joe Macbeth’s kitchen is “done” (1.1.3). These leftovers are also what allows them to “look into the seeds of time” (1.3.58) and predict—in an inescapably equivocal way—a bright future for the ambitious Scottish head-chef, whose fundamental contribution to the success of Duncan Docherty’s renowned Irish restaurant is not properly acknowledged.


The paper intends to analyse some of the strategies this adaptation employs in order to make the “original” palatable for contemporary TV audiences. In particular, it focuses on the all-male hierarchical heated world of the kitchen, where Macbeth’s honourable dissection of the enemy “from the nave to th’ chops” (1.2.22) becomes Joe Macbeth’s equally honourable slicing and dicing of the animal. “Respect” is the keyword in Macbeth’s kitchen. It primarily applies to the animal. (It means “no waste”, hence the prevalence of offal and innards in the restaurant’s menu). It anthropomorphizes the animal and, by the same token, brings the “human” disquietingly closer to the “animal”, in that it re-constitutes the “human” as the carnivorous “subject who eats well” (Jacques Derrida) and is thus more likely to become the human / animal who kills.


For Derrida, “the chef must be an eater of flesh, with a view to being ‘symbolically’ eaten himself” (“Eating Well”, 114). On the night of the award of three Michelin stars, the carnivorous “totemic” father / chef Duncan is offered a feast of a lifetime before being dispatched / symbolically eaten. The paper continues by concentrating on some of the effects of the murderous deed, especially in terms of the blurring of boundaries between the “private” sweaty and messy world of the kitchen and the “public” sanitised world of the restaurant over which Ella Macbeth presides. It concludes by arguing that adaptations such as Moffat’s allegorise the extent to which the “mangling” of the body of a Shakespearean text is the conditio sine qua non for its survival. They bear witness to the “uncanny presentness” of Shakespeare. Shakespeare remains “young in deed” (3.4.143).



The Spanish ambassador’s account of the first Stuart masque: A new document

Berta Cano Echevarría

Universidad de Valladolid

Mark Hutchings

University of Reading


In 1604 the Count of Villamediana was despatched to London by King Philip III as a special envoy to pay compliments to the newly crowned King James, and to begin the negotiations for the forthcoming peace between England and Spain. Queen Anna commissioned Samuel Daniel to write a masque to be performed by the queen’s ladies-in-waiting in the presence of Anna herself, to which Villamediana as well as other ambassadors was invited. The Vision of the Twelve Goddesses is important as the first Stuart masque, a genre that would be associated chiefly with Ben Jonson and Inigo Jones. In a letter to King Philip Villamediana recounts the various intrigues surrounding the performance of the masque at the Feast of the Epiphany, notably the manoeuvring between the Spanish and French ambassadors to secure precedence at the event. The letter, held in the Archivo General de Simancas and previously unknown, also includes a detailed account of the performance itself which differs in important respects from that of the printed text. This paper discusses the context of this important diplomatic and royal occasion and examines Villamediana’s account for what it might tell us about the performance and performative significance of Daniel’s The Vision of the Twelve Goddesses in the light of recent scholarship on the Stuart masque.





Becoming Shakespeare & Jane Austen in Love: An intertextual dialogue between two biopics

Marina Cano López

Universidad de Murcia


It is a truth universally acknowledged that Jane Austen did not have an interesting love life. Or maybe not, suggests the recent film Becoming Jane (2007), based on the author’s real life short affair with lawyer Tom Lefroy. The movie, which creates a prototypical Jane Austen narrative out of the novelist’s life, finds its intertextual roots in the celebrated biography of the English bard Shakespeare in Love (1998).  Romanticising both writers’ lives, the films begin and end similarly (and truthfully). They open with Shakespeare’s and Austen’s creative block, which will be overcome thanks to their beloveds’ influence, and end with the lovers’ sad separation. The gap lies, then, in the middle, where we allow ourselves to imagine how the writers created their famous romances, Romeo and Juliet (1597) and Pride and Prejudice (1813) respectively, out of their own lives, confirming, besides, the old rule that an author must write from first-hand personal experience. Shakespeare and Austen must live love before writing about it. The purpose of this paper is to show the intertextual connections between Becoming Jane and Shakespeare in Love, analyzing how Jane Austen becomes the heroine of her own novel, just as Shakespeare was before the hero of his own play.





The chore and the passion: Shakespeare and graduation in mid-twentieth-century Portugal
Rui Carvalho Homem

Universidade do Porto, Portugal

This paper offers a glimpse of a chapter in the history of Shakespeare’s reception in Portugal. Its referential scope is defined by a particular academic environment during a particular period: the University of Coimbra (oldest university in Portugal), where over seventy students, from the early 1940s to the late 1960s, were prompted by a well-known Portuguese academic, Paulo Quintela (1905-87), to write lengthy graduation theses on Shakespeare. But the fact that such texts were produced to comply with a specific academic requirement, in the relatively insulated setting of a mid-century university community, does not prevent them from foregrounding broader issues, sometimes involving interests whose passionate intensity might seem alien to academia. An attentive reading of those theses taps into such concerns as dominant literary taste in the target culture, its political implications, and some theatrical extensions; and it ultimately delineates a rationale for appropriating Shakespeare into a foreign language and culture that was both sophisticated in its terms of comparison and centripetal in its presiding cultural perspective.





“If Shakespeare were alive today…”: Re-reading postmodern politics in Baz Luhrmann’s Romeo + Juliet (1996) and Michael Almereyda’s Hamlet (2000)

Manuel Casas Guijarro

Universidad de Sevilla


Both Baz Lurhmann and Michael Almereyda deauthorise  Shakespeare and appropriate the Bard’s texts –Romeo and Juliet, Hamlet- to  construct post-modern multifaceted products that fuse the contemporary  cinematic realistic devices with the editorial intention to transpose the work’s  universality in order to be understood and digested by the post-popular and  glo-cali-zed 21st century culture. Through pastiche, mass consumption, simulacrum and empty discourses both filmmakers present a parallel approach  in their experimental rendering of the two greatest Shakespearean tragedies:  Hamlet, and Romeo and Juliet.


Thus, I may not intend to produce a deep study of how both filmmakers  adapt the Shakespearean texts to the moving image – something on which plenty of critical material has been notably devoted- . However, I will focus  on analysing how certain concomitant elements interact in both productions  to construct a common perspective in the way to approach, appropriate and  reshape the Shakespearean text so as to produce a cultural product for the

21st century viewer under the light of the postmodern theoretical viewpoint.




Filming The Taming of the Shrew for Franco’s dictatorship: La fierecilla domada (1955)

Juan F. Cerdá Martínez

Universidad de Murcia


‘I am ashamed that women are so simple

To offer war where they should kneel for peace,

Or seek for rule, supremacy and sway,

When they are bound to serve, love and obey.’



In Edwin J. Collins’s film (1923), Mary Pickford winked at the camera after these lines, linking the start of Shakespeare’s sound film career to a tradition of interpreting The Taming of the Shrew within the boundaries of modern sexual correctness. In the twentieth-century, films and theatre productions started to relativise or expose Katherina’s denigrating submission, while, in 1955, Spain provided the optimal context for an overtly doctrinal and regressive rewriting of the initial text. This paper describes how La fierecilla domada appropriates Shakespeare’s play to participate in the reinforcement of national, social, religious and sexual identity under the Franco dictatorship. First, I explore some of the connections between the film’s production team and the Regime, to later move on to the analysis of the text’s (re)vision. Finally, I briefly contextualise La fierecilla domada within some European films and stagings of Shakespeare’s play in the twentieth-century.





The oriental tragedies of Mary Pix and Delarivier Manley

Pilar Cuder Domínguez

Universidad de Huelva


The exoticism of Mediterranean cultures had made a strong impression on Restoration London theatre-goers since Sir William Davenant’s The Siege of Rhodes (1663), and was rekindled in the 1670s by plays such as John Dryden’s The Conquest of Granada (1671) and Elkanah Settle’s The Empress of Morocco (1673). However, this can hardly be considered a new development, since Restoration writers were in turn tapping into a spatter of Elizabethan and Jacobean plays on the Mediterranean Muslim kingdoms. Trade with the Mediterranean had prospered in the late sixteenth century so that the English had increasingly more contact with Muslim trade partners, particularly the Kingdom of Morocco and the Ottoman Empire. These locations, though dangerous, offered beguiling prospects to enterprising subjects. Not surprisingly, Moors and Turks soon began to feature in the plays of the time with similarly ambivalent connotations, awakening fear and admiration. However, as some critics have noted, they should not be understood as ethnographic portrayals, but rather as reflections on difference, change and possibility, more often than not masking over underlying domestic preoccupations. This paper pursues these intriguing questions in the tragedies of Mary Pix and Delarivier Manley.





Visionay politics:  Biblical typology in Anna Trapnel’s The Cry of a Stone (1654)

Joan Curbet

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona  


Anna Trapnel was perhaps the most famous woman prophet in England in the 1650s, associated with the Fifth Monarchists (whom she joined in 1652). Her prophecies are mostly collected in The Cry of a Stone (1654), where she explains how she received “God’s grace and her prophetic powers”, a statement which empowered her to voice the strong

complaints of the Fifth Monarchists against the government; the early sixteen-fifties signalled a moment when some of the most radical groups felt that the Revolution was being neutralised from within itself, and Trapnel´s text bears witness to this anxiety. The call she hears, enjoining her to “write”, evokes the opening of Revelation in which God commands John to direct his prophecies about the future to the angels of each of the seven churches (Rev. 2:3); Trapnel’s appropriation of the divine command thus provides for her, from the beginning, with a full spiritual authority from which to speak openly.


We find a constant use of Biblical typology in Trapnel’s text, through  which she identifies with the Prophets, with the Apostles or with the writer of the book of Revelations; in this interplay between her text and Scripture, she manages to create a particular textual space from which she can voice her perspective on English politics and the development of the Revolution. This paper will analyse the various ways in which these typological spaces are created by Trapnel, her relation to them, and their implications within women’s prophetic writing in the mid 17th century.






Spanish medieval and renaissance history as depicted in Charles Dickens’ A Child’s History of England

Eroulla Demetriou

José Ruiz Mas

Universidad de Jaén


In this paper we endeavour to analyse the image of relevant Spanish historical figures such as King Pedro I, Catherine of Aragon, Christopher Columbus, Philip II, the historical event of the invasion of the Spanish Armada, as well as other historical pro-Spanish English characters such as Mary I, as depicted in Charles Dickens’ propagandistic A Child’s History of England (1851-53). In his overtly didactic attempt to convey a specific image of the legendary antagonism existing between Spain and England to his children and other contemporary English youngsters through this peculiar history book, Dickens amply shows his prejudiced view of Spanish history and his explicitly patriotic description of England’s history. Proof of the relevance and the persistence of Dickens’ anti-Spanish and anti-Catholic attitude that prevailed in English society throughout the second half of the XIXth century is that C.R.L. Fletcher and Rudyard Kipling insist on similar ideas of Anglo-Spanish relations in A School History of England (1911).






“That which is bred in the bone, will never out of the flesh”: English pamphleteers’ views of the Kings of Spain during the Spanish Match negotiations (1617-1624)

Eroulla Demetriou

Luciano García García

Universidad de Jaén


This paper aims to express how the King of Spain is depicted in propagandistic pamphlets during the period of the Spanish Match negotiations when a possible marriage between the young Charles Stuart and the Infanta María, Philip III’s daughter, caused English clergy and pamphleteers to take to their pens to warn of an ensuing apocalypse if these political nuptials were to take place. This essay explores how the pamphleteers name the Spanish King, preferring to name him “Philip” instead of Philip III or Philip IV, evidently trying to conjure up an image of the devilish Philip II who had dared, and luckily for the Protestants, failed to invade England in 1588. Whether these writers were ignorant of who the Spanish king was at the time, or whether there was general confusion due to these three monarchs bearing the same Christian name, the fact is that this had the effect of propagating the Black Legend of Spain as Philip II is alluded to constantly. Thus the pamphleteers effectively highlight “King Philip’s” ambition and deceitful nature in order to warn of the consequences if the Spaniards were allowed into England through the peaceable means of a royal marriage.





Making an audience: Early Modern readers and the Helicon

Elena Domínguez Romero

Universidad Complutense de Madrid


The pastoral anthology England’s Helicon (1600-1614) is early open to be made out of its own audience’s perceptions. The present study intends to make it clear that the Helicon can be read as a compilation of 159 separate poems. But also, that some of these 159 poems can be read together giving place to different sequences. Both possibilities are equally valid for seventeenth century readers who know the literary tradition of the time. It all depends on the diverse ways that the different readers may choose to approach the text. That is, on the audience’s choices.





Ariadne’s adaptation of Alexander Oldys’s The Fair Extravagant in She Ventures and He Wins

Jorge Figueroa Dorrego

Universidade de Vigo


In the preface to She Ventures and He Wins (1695), the young woman signing as “Ariadne” says that the plot of this play was taken from “a small novel,” the title of which she does not mention. Neither the editors of the text in the anthology of comedies Female Playwrights of the Restoration (1991) –Lyons and Morgan– nor any of the critics that have recently commented on this piece have identified the source of the play. The answer to this riddle is to be found at the Biographia Dramatica compiled by Baker, Reed, and Jones in 1812. The main plot of that comedy is Alexander Oldys’s The Fair Extravagant, or The Humorous Bride (1682). The aim of this paper is to (re-) unearth that source, and to analyse how Ariadne adapted the male-authored original for her own purposes as a woman dramatist, combined it with a farcical sub-plot, and endeavoured to tailor it to the new tastes of the town.





You the meek Virgin’: An approach to Lady Eleanor Davies’ prophetic voices

Carme Font Paz

Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona


Lady Eleanor Davies (1603-1652) was the most prolific woman prophet of the early modern period. As she repeatedly explains in her pamphlets, she was awoken at her house in July 1625 by ‘the Heavenly voice descending, speaking as through a trumpet of a most clear sound these words: Nineteen years and a half to the Judgement, and you as the meek Virgin’ (Revelations, 1649).


Between then and her death in 1652 she published more than sixty pamphlets, presenting herself as a re-embodiment of the prophet Daniel, and applying passages from the Bible to events in her own and the country’s life. In Samson’s Fall (1642), for instance, she connected the story of Delilah’s betrayal of Samson to the malign influence of the Catholic Queen Henrietta Maria over the king, a matter much commented upon Protestants, who identified Catholicism with royal absolutism.


This paper will explore the literal and metaphorical meanings of Lady Eleanor’s prophecies in three of her most famous writings: Samson’s Fall, The Everlasting Gospel, and Nineteen Years and a Half to the Judgement, paying special attention to her condensed and elliptical style as well as the locus of intersection they provide between individual identity and gender.




Gangster Shakespeares: Maqbool and Omkara as the new Corleones

Rosa María García Periago

Universidad de Murcia


The use of the gangster genre for adaptations of Shakespeare’s plays on screen can be traced back to Ken Hughes’s Joe Macbeth (1955). Since then, there have been other memorable Shakespearean adaptations, such as Richard Loncraine’s Richard III (1995) with Ian McKellen, which also makes use of this genre. More recently, Bollywood film-maker Vishal Bharadwaj has adapted Macbeth and Othello (Maqbool, 2003; Omkara, 2006) which also bear traces of this genre. Bollywood films are often called “masala” for their blending of several genres, including musical, romance and drama. These two films seem to follow this general trend but foreground the gangster genre. The aim of this paper is to explore the gangster features present in these two adaptations to show how Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Othello can be rewritten as new Godfathers.






New contexts for old prints: the political construction of the Popish Plot

Manuel J. Gómez Lara

Universidad de Sevilla


This paper discusses the role of visual imagery in the propaganda campaigns aimed at checkmating the Stuart status quo in the aftermath of the Third Dutch War. I will focus on an anonymous broadside entitled “Popish Plots and Treasons” (1st pr.1623; repr. 1676-77; illustr. T. Danckertsz) to discuss the recycling of Jacobean prints as yet another Whig attempt to break the restrictions of official censorship on religious images and to advance, through the intermediate figure of Queen Elizabeth I, the imminent danger of a Catholic revolt.





When Shakespeare becomes one of us: Coming out in Coronado's Hamlet and Jarman's The Tempest

Juan Carlos Hidalgo Ciudad

Universidad de Sevilla




Time and the dramatic representation of experience in The Winter’s Tale

Lorena Laureano Domínguez

Universidad de Huelva


The present paper attempts to offer an approach to the crucial and complex question of the relationship between literature—specifically drama—and experience through the analysis of one of Shakespeare’s late plays, The Winter’s Tale.


The Winter’s Tale can be interpreted as an exhaustive exploration of the human mind in its various states. The play is characterized by its diversity in the range of human emotions and experiences represented. Besides, the temporal dimension of experience makes of time an indispensable component in this enquiry. In fact, the dynamics of the play is based on a constant interplay between past and present at the level of the characters’ psychology: the representation of the immediate and direct experience of the characters’ emotions and perceptions is combined with the experience resulting from the accumulation of past lived moments, which can only be reconstructed by an exercise of memory.  The former is more effectively conveyed through the techniques of drama, whereas the latter is intimately linked to narrative. The enactment of these different kinds of experience, which can be assimilated to Walter Benjamin’s distinction between Erfahrung and Erlebnis, is only possible thanks to the peculiar temporal configuration of the play.


The purpose of this paper is, therefore, to explore how human experience is mediated and codified dramatically in The Winter’s Tale as well as to prove and acknowledge the essential role of time in the representation of that experience.





Jesting joyfulness: Humor, vice, and improvisation in renaissance morality theatre

Karen Kettnich

University of Maryland, USA

Agnes Matuska

University of Szeged, Hungary


Amongst the pages of Thomas Trevellyon’s Miscellany is an image of a woman labeled “Vice.”  In the verse caption beneath the image, Vice is described as a “jesting joyfulness.”  From this evocative phrase, we derive several questions about the nature of Renaissance performance and morality drama: what is the relationship between the theatrical Vice, jesting, and joyfulness?  How does the improvisatory quality of “jesting” inform our understanding of the Vice figure?  What is the moral quality of “joyfulness”?  In responding to these questions, our paper will examine codes within texts that seem to call for Vices to improvise and scripted passages spoken by Vices which mimic improvisation.  It will outline the manner in which the Vice’s ability to move from locus to platea and back again reflects his ambivalent relationship towards his script.  We will then consider the effect such Vice-improvisation seems designed to have on audiences and their engagement in the drama.  Exploring the rhythms of engagement and detachment present in the Vice’s mastery of the stage, its story, and its language, will demonstrate the crucial role that improvisation plays in the theatrical humor and pleasure of the Vice in Renaissance morality drama and its later incarnations.




“Needful Woe”: King John and Genre

Zenón Luis-Martínez

University of Huelva


The opening lines in the closing speech of Shakespeare’s King John (“Oh let vs pay the time: but needfull woe / Since it hath been before hand with our greefes” F1), can be arguably read as an invitation to respond to the sad events dramatized in the play with the due amount of lamentation. The speaker – the  Bastard Philip Faulconbridge/Sir Richard Plantagenet – assesses previous actions as somehow sorrowful and requests an adequate reaction to them. And yet, these lines allow for two opposed readings, a fact that is reinforced by subsequent editors’ need to repunctuate the text (“O let us pay the time but needful woe, / Since it hath been beforehand with our griefs”, as in Honigmann’s Arden or Braunmuller’s Oxford editions, 5.7.110-11). Does the Bastard mean that the former events have not been lamented sufficiently, so now we should react to the death of King John with its full due of sorrow? Or does he mean that since so much sorrow has preceded this moment we should only grant to John’s death a contained, decorous display of grief? As these lines suggest an evaluation of the play’s entire course of action in terms of its nature as lamentable history, this paper uses the framework provided by the final speech to speculate on the play’s unquestioned status as historical drama and its more arguable relation to tragedy. Critical neglect of King John on grounds of its lack of unity or its flawed heroic characterizations means to be counterbalanced here by claiming its debt to a rhetorical tradition of representing history as an endless web of plaintive commentary on significant actions. 



Proverbs in Shakespeare’s plays: Popular wisdom as a stylistic element

Jesús Marín

Universidad de Extremadura


Elizabethan and Jacobean dramatic texts reveal, among numerous other characteristics, a vocabulary rich in multiple connotations and nuances. Such a peculiarity in the style of the dramatic language of this period becomes apparent not only in the abundant polysemic terms and expressions that proliferate in Elizabethan discourse but also in a wide range of idiomatic expressions and even in some phraseological units of proverbial nature. Among the great amount of works produced in this period, those by William Shakespeare are certainly the ones that have attracted the greatest interest among scholars and, therefore, they have also generated a huge number of publications. In this paper an analysis of some of the proverbs that enrich the dramatic works of Shakespeare, following the point of view of R. Norrick in his work How Proverbs Mean, will be attempted, with a final reflection on their translation into other languages.





Othello: Romantic drama or sociological tragedy?: The productions of Luca de Tena (1944) and González Vergel (1971)

Nicolás Montalbán Martínez

Universidad de Murcia


The purpose of this paper is to consider two different ways of producing Shakespeare’s Othello, one catering to the romantic cultural taste and mechanisms of appropriation of the Franco regime, and the other, a thought-provoking sociological approach to the tragedy, with the distinguishing and astonishing behaviour of Desdemona, which is diametrically opposed to the romantic tradition..


When considering Tena´s version, we are once again dealing with quite a different conception of  Shakespeare´s original. According to González Ruiz (the author of this particular version) the play was adapted to current taste and reduces the original five acts to three, suppressing the third act and part of the fourth, which gives rise to a synthetic version of the play, written in prose.

On the other hand, González Vergel´s Othello is based on a sociological interpretation in which Othelo and Iago are seen to be manipulated by political, social and historical circumstances, a vision which would seem to downgrade these two characters and convert them into tools which they themselves despise. This version keeps all the episodes from the original play, but adds some interludes with music and ballet.


The visual aspects of the Luca de Tena production continue to draw on the imperial pomp and rhetoric of the period, while stressing the realism of columns, staircases, castle, and so on. On the contrary, González Vergel´s Othello is based on the transformation of a few simple elements, leaving ample space on stage for the symbolic game of the tragedy.


In this paper we are discovering two different ways of approaching Shakespeare´s Othello, the classical romantic and divine approach presented by the Francoist regime adapted to the political circumstances, and a new humanist conception which roughly coincides with the decline of the Dictatorship. 




“All pretty hearty” in Newgate: The jolly Jacobite conspirator in Durfey’s Love for Money (1691)

Mª José Mora

Universidad de Sevilla


Like many dramatists of his age, Thomas Durfey did his best to swim with the tide and adjust the tone of his plays to the changing political situation. Though he had bashed the Whigs in the comedies he wrote on the aftermath of the Exclusion Crisis, after the Glorious Revolution he did not scruple to turn coat and, as soon as the new regime was consolidated, joined in reviling the loyalists. Love for Money, or The Boarding School, produced in January 1691, makes comic capital of Jacobite plots to invade England with a French army in the summer of 1690. It also incorporates timely mockery of a conspiracy which had just been uncovered: the Jacobites involved had been arrested, speedily brought to trial, convicted of treason, and were awaiting execution as the play opened. The present paper intends to explore these topical references and to show that, despite Durfey’s emphatic disclaimer in the Preface, this comedy includes a pointed allusion to the fortunes of the chief conspirator in this plot, Richard Graham, Viscount Preston.





Observations on Shakespeare’s phraseological language: Modified phraseological units in the plays

José Luis Oncins Martínez

Universidad de Extremadura


This paper reports on the preliminary results of an on-going research project that is being carried out at the University of Extremadura: “A discourse-based approach to the phraseological language of Shakespeare’s plays: with special reference to the modification of phraseological units”*. As its title says, the project deals, first of all, with Shakespeare’s phraseological language, i.e., strings composed of a minimum of two words up to a maximum of a whole sentence. Then, as the subtitle specifies, the project concentrates on variation or modification of this type of units as they appear in the flow of the discourse of the plays.


Even though this type of multilexical wordplay is by no means unusual in Shakespeare’s drama, it does not seem to have received much critical attention so far, so the project represents a relatively new alternative approach to the analysis of Shakespeare’s dramatic language. Besides, its method and results could very well be applied to the study of other authors and texts, including also their translations.


The paper will present firstly a very brief overview of the project as well as its preliminary results and then will discuss some of the problems inherent in this research.





The audience of MS Hunter 93, a medical text

Ivalla Ortega Barrera

Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria


The aim of this paper is to explore the concept of audience in MS Hunter 93 (T.4.10), a remedy book written in the 16th century. This manual is presented by its author as a book addressed to anyone who “has not a physician at hand”. Several studies about the classification of medical texts have taken into account the audience as a criterion for taxonomy (academic or non-academic) (Voigts 1982, Taavitsainen 2001, Alonso-Almeida and Carroll 2004). My intention is to show how audience is codified in language by means of strategies such as specific use of vocabulary and the authorities quoted in the running text. My ultimate goal is to see whether the author has really written his text for a general audience, or whether he has failed to do so.





The politics of pathos in Otway’s Don Carlos (1676)

Paula de Pando Mena

Universidad de Sevilla


Don Carlos Prince of Spain (1676), Otway’s second play, is a daring dramatic experiment which anticipates the sentimental domestic plays of the following decades: the love triangle between prince Carlos, his father Philip II and his former lover and now stepmother Elizabeth of Valois is the basis for a play on incest, betrayed loyalties and tyrannical oppression. Otway presents a strikingly unflattering portrait of Spain and its Catholic icon, Philip II, whose control over his subjects is symbolized by his intrusion in the private sphere of love. This paper will attempt to analyze the use of pathos in the play and the way sentimental elements screen political concerns. By focusing on the sufferings of the main couple, Otway successfully handles an inflammatory material whose meaningful overtones could not pass unnoticed for the audience, especially considering that Otway dedicated it to the Duke of York precisely in the year when James’s conversion to Catholicism was acknowledged by the Pope, and when secret alliances were being signed between Charles II and Louis XIV.





‘And endless complexity, lasts but a while’: On nominal structural and syntactic complexity in early Modern English


Javier Pérez Guerra

Ana E. Martínez Insua

Universidad de Vigo


And endless complexity, lasts but a while

Edward Robert Bulwer Lytton, Earl of Lytton (1860) “Lucile”


In this paper we undertake the study of structural and syntactic complexity in a selection of text types or genres (letters, news, drama) in the recent history of English. In particular, we focus on the complexity of nominal constituents functioning as (unmarked) subjects, objects or adjuncts in a representative sample of declarative sentences retrieved from a corpus of texts from 1650 to Present-day English, namely the British component of ARCHER (A Representative Corpus of Historical English Registers; Biber et al 1994). The subject- and the object- positions have been claimed (Davison & Lutz 1985:60, Gibson 1998:27) to be crucial as far as complexity and processing are concerned. In this research we also pay attention to the noun phrases which function as adverbials in an attempt to compare their degree of complexity with that evinced by the external (subjects) and the (internal) arguments.


In this investigation we assume (i) that text types can be graded in terms of complexity, (ii) that text types differ as regards their linguistic complexity both synchronically and diachronically, and (iii), following Taavitsainen’s (2001:141) definition of genre or text type as “a codification of linguistic features”, that structural and syntactic complexity can be measured out by means of linguistic variables. In this respect, we apply several metrics of complexification (size/length both of the whole construction and of the segments up to the core constituents or ‘markers’, syntactic density, syntactic depth, Hawkins’ 1994/2004 ‘IC-to-word ratio’ and ‘on-line IC-to-word ratio’, etc). Such metrics will measure the degree of linguistic complexity of the constituents and will allow us to place the text types on a scale of complexification, ready for the purposes of synchronic and diachronic comparison.


In this pilot study we have chosen the text types of letters, news and drama, which will be comfronted to the same experiment. Aiming at focusing on written-to-be-read (and written-to-be-spoken) texts and trying to consider informal (‘(possibly) speech-based’) textual material, we concentrate on the analysis of three text types which can be taken as representative of such labels.



Biber, Douglas, Edward Finegan and Dwight Atkinson (1994) “ARCHER and its challenges: compiling and exploring a representative corpus of historical English registers”. Eds. Udo Fries, Gunnel Tottie and Peter Schneider. Creating and using English language corpora. Amsterdam: Rodopi (1-14).

Davison, Alice and Richard Lutz (1985) “Measuring syntactic complexity relative to discourse context”. Eds. David R. Dowty, Lauri Karttunen and Arnold M. Zwicky. Natural language parsing. Psychological, computational, and theoretical perspectives. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press (26-66).

Gibson, Edward (1998) “Linguistic complexity: locality of syntactic dependencies”. Cognition 68/1: 1-76.

Hawkins, John A. (1994) A performance theory of order and constituency. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.




Henry Constable’s sonnets to Arbella Stuart

María Jesús Pérez Jáuregui

Universidad de Sevilla


Although Elizabethan poet and courtier Henry Constable is best known for his sonnet-sequence Diana (1592), he also wrote a series of sonnets addressed to noble personages that appear only in one manuscript (Victoria and Albert Museum, MS Dyce 44). Three of these lyrics are dedicated to Lady Arbella Stuart – cousin-german to James VI of Scotland-, who was considered a candidate to Elizabeth’s succession for a long time. Two of the sonnets were probably written on the occasion of Constable and Arbella’s meeting at court in 1588, and praise the thirteen-year old lady for her numerous virtues; the other one seems to have been written later on, as a conclusion to the whole book, implying that Constable at a certain moment presented it to Arbella in search for patronage and political protection. At a time when the succession seemed imminent, Constable’s allegiance to the Earl of Essex, who befriended Arbella and yet sent messages to James to assure him of his circle’s support, raises the question of the true motivation of these sonnets. This paper will analyze these particular works in a political context rife with courtly intrigue.





Shakespeare and experimental cinema: What happened to King Lear?

Remedios Perni Llorente

Universidad de Murcia


King Lear has been a source of numberless adaptations since Shakespeare’s times up until nowadays. The twentieth century favoured new possibilities of adaptation thanks to the birth of cinema and provided his work with new aesthetics and points of view. Often considered a masterpiece encompassing many of the universal themes that make a work timeless, such as love, insanity, betrayal, redemption or revenge, King Lear has also been the focus of attention of individual readings throughout the twentieth century to the present. Modern Art and Experimental cinema have explored the limits of adaptation, so that purists have been prone to despise their “sacrilegious practices”.


One of the most controversial adaptations of King Lear has been Godard’s. He places the action of the film in the period of time “after Chernobyl”, when Art has lost his sense. William Shakespeare’s Junior the Fifth is the one who can “restore” the lost artwork of humanity, and King Lear, the text which seems to float on the air and inspire him. The young descendant of Shakespeare grasps King Lear’s lines in others’ conversations, specially when Don Learo and his daughter Cordelia talk to each other. A film is being made at the same time that this film develops. Jean Luc Godard appears as a strange professor that disgress about art, and Woody Allen, Mr. Alien, receives the film to edit it at the end. Godard’s playful sense of humor is omnipresent. An interesting point to bear in mind concerning Godard’s King Lear is its reception in intelectual and academic circles. Are “we all part of the experiment”? or has this film been made for a too determined number of spectators?





Caius Marius and Venice Preserv’d: Otway’s tragic, or “comic”, muse?

Rafael Portillo

Universidad de Sevilla


Thomas Otway’s dramatic reputation has relied mostly on his two major tragedies, The Orphan (1680) and Venice Preserv’d (1682) and, to a lesser extent, on his earlier tragedy Caius Marius (1679), all of which were very successful in the author’s lifetime. Although critics have praised the dramatic and tragic qualities of these plays, they have failed to acknowledge the important comic elements present in Caius Marius and Venice Preserv’d. This paper focuses on the humorous aspect of both dramas, in an attempt at proving the essential role that laughter, comedy and farce play in those two apparently tragic plays.





Truth in Increase Mather’s A Further Account of the Tryals of the New England Witches and Cases of Conscience Concerning Witchcraft

Elena Quintana Toledo

Universidad de Las Palmas de Gran Canaria


This paper explores the concept of truth as presented in two texts written by Increase Mather: A Further Account of the Tryals of the New England Witches and Cases of Conscience Concerning Witchcraft and Evil Spirits Personating Men. The theoretical framework used in the analysis of the data is the Pragmatic Theory of Truth (Peirce 1994) which points out that a proposition is true if it is useful to believe in it. This perspective takes into consideration several contextual factors such as participants and the relationship that holds between them, as well as their influence upon the meaning as it was intended to be conveyed by the addresser and understood by the addressee. I will show that truth is to be interpreted in terms of the writer’s purpose to create verisimilitude when asserting some claims. In this light, special attention must be paid to the benefit he achieves by making people believe his claims in an extended context.






Words ‘new and old’ – of some oxymoric paradigms in Shakespeare’s Sonnets

Mireille Ravassat

University of Valenciennes, France


Although not a prominent stylistic feature of The Sonnets, wherein Shakespeare makes a more lavish use of antithesis and paradox, oxymoron expresses some of the poet’s fundamental concerns. The present paper aims at scrutinising the most striking instances of Shakespeare’s skill at encapsulating apparent contraries in The Sonnets. As early as Sonnet 1, one among a series of epistles inciting the Fair Friend to procreation (Sonnets 1 to 7), Shakespeare’s binocular vision, the hallmark of his style, is expressed by means of oppositions summoned in pairs and the move from praise to reproach is crystallised in the ‘tender churl’ oxymoron (12). The discourse of reproach, an eminent feature of The Sonnets, is broached here through the use of an urgent vocative form, one of the most striking speech-acts in the whole collection. The same vocative stance crops up in Sonnet 4, in the use of ‘beauteous niggard’ (5) and ‘Profitless usurer’ (7).


Sonnets 35 and 40 signal a move from a rhetoric of self-hate on the poet-speaker’s part to the first climax of the theme of masochism of abjectness in love relationships : ‘That I an áccessary needs must be To that sweet thief which sourly robs from me.’ (35, 13-4).


In 40, the robbery motif crops up yet, with the ‘gentle thief’ oxymoron of line 9. The thievery motif is also to be found in Sonnet 99 (1-3). But here, in a lighter mood, the poet-speaker delineates a myth of origins. The violet is the object of flattery in being compared to the beloved :


The forward violet thus did I chide :

Sweet thief, whence dist thou steal thy sweet that smells

If not from my love’s breath ?


Sonnets 43 and 45 are two absence-poems. In 43, a case of compact layering of antithesis and oxymoron, on the theme of physical, psychological and spiritual chiaroscuro, the poet-speaker enjoys the addresse’s presence vicariously in the world of dreams, shining ‘darkly bright’ (4), his ‘shade’ – a pun on dark and image – being made to ‘[shine]’ (8). In 45, Ariel like, thought and desire, the poet-speaker’s ambassadors of love, are always with the beloved however wide the distance between them, such a magic feat being made tangible by the oxymoric compound ‘present-absent’ (4).


Finally in 76, that could be termed a poem of apologia, or self-defence, Shakespeare, resorts in a gnomic way, to the Janus-faced emblem of the sun, standing at once for mechanical repetition and Phoenix like renewal, to express the fact that love, the literary topos par excellence, like the sun, is ever-new and ever-old : ‘For as the sun is daily new and old, So is my love still telling what is told’ (13-4). Since the lexicon of any given language is finite by definition, the only way for the poet is to construe style as providing ever-renewed linguistic apparel to convey the nuances of an eternal theme if any.


Although coining ever-new words is impossible to achieve, the coincidentia oppositorum allowed by oxymoron is a way to devise new means to experiment with words – ‘dressing old words new’ as the poet-speaker puts it in Sonnet 76 (line 11).




Early stage history of Jules Romains' Volpone

Purificación Ribes Taver

Universitat de València

No other adaptation of Volpone has ever received as enthusiastic a reception as Jules Romains' free version did when permièred in 1928. It held the stage for over 250 nights and continued to attract large numbers of spectators when taken on tour during the seasons following. The aim of this paper is to uncover the reasons for such overwhelming success by analysing both the theatrical merits of the script and the performing abilities of Dullin's and Baret's ensembles. The information provided by playbills, theatre programmes and critical reviews cast light on the horizon of expectations of their audiences. They enable an assessment of the ideological approach which they favoured as well as of the staging techniques which they preferred.





Regional Lexis in Bp. White Kennett’s Parochial Antiquities (1695):  An Ignored Source of Early-Modern Provincial Vocabulary

Javier Ruano García

Universidad de Salamanca


The analysis of regional dialect linguistic variation in the Early Modern period has been notably disregarded in favour of an ample scholarly interest in the ‘authorized’ version of English which came to be eventually established as a standard. The history of regional ‘Englishes’ at this time still remains to a very great extent in oblivion owing mainly to an apparent scarcity of sources which do not always supply trustworthy data. Recent research on this field has been for the most part focused on phonology, orthography and morphosyntax by virtue of the rather more abundant information that (non-)literary sources yield about these traits. Regional lexical diversity has, on the contrary, deserved no special attention as uncertainty arises with regard to what was genuinely provincial and what belonged to the non-standard lexical periphery of English; i.e. colloquialisms, etc.


It is worth noting, however, that the emergence of a linguistic standard rendered regional varieties the objects of antiquarian and archeological interest at the time. John Ray’s A Collection of Words not Generally Used (1674, 1691) marked the beginnings of proper English dialect lexicography, although it is known that other attempts were also made at listing regional words. Sir Thomas Browne, for instance, gathered twenty-six words proper to Norfolk and East Anglia in Tract VIII of Certain Miscellany Tracts (1683); John Aubrey collected vocabulary from Surrey in The Natural History and Antiquities of the County of Surrey, Begun in the Year 1673 (1719); and George Meriton glossed Yorkshire and northern vocabulary to his well-known A Yorkshire Dialogue (1683, 1685).


This paper endeavours to offer additional data to the gloomy lexical panorama of Early Modern regional English. It is our aim to make a thorough analysis of the four hundred and twenty-eight words registered in Bp. White Kennett’s glossary to Parochial Antiquities (1695), reprinted and rearranged by Rev. W.W. Skeat for the English Dialect Society (EDS) in 1879. This unnoticed specimen does actually widen the information lent by the afore-mentioned sources and provides concrete geographical data that may help us contribute to sketch a lexical map of provincialisms at the time.




On Shakespeare’s use and manipulation of phraseologisms

Manuel Sánchez García

Universidad de Extremadura


As is well known, one recurrent stylistic device in Shakespeare’s texts is the use of all sorts of phraseological units and expressions. This is proved by, among other things, the enormous —and sometimes exclusive— attention that this aspect has received in the many glossaries, compilations and manuals on Shakespeare’s style published in the past, not to mention the numerous comments we can find in the main critical editions of his plays and poems. However, those works hardly ever go any further than to succinctly explain individual meanings, compile lists or, in the fewest cases, classify and organise expressions under diverse criteria. This is no doubt striking since it is well known that Shakespeare often manipulated and deformed language in general, and this type of expressions in particular, in order to achieve a wide range of dramatic effects. In this sense, this presentation aims at humbly collaborating in filling this gap in Shakespearean studies. With this purpose, an analysis will be carried out in a number of places in Shakespeare’s texts in which the writer intentionally modifies certain expressions in order to obtain unquestionably witty effects.





Analysing the grotesque in Aphra Behn’s The Rover I (1677) and II (1681)

Ángeles Tomé Rosales

Universidade de Vigo


Bakhtin and Thompson’s theories about the grotesque have been regarded as the most relevant throughout the twentieth century. Although both scholars deal with the grotesque, their perspectives are slightly different. According to Bakhtin, the grotesque lowers those who epitomize authority in society by drawing attention to their body functions in an exaggerated way, which brings about amusement and delight. Instead, Thompson contends that the grotesque is related to the frightening because, after having reached a certain degree of abnormality, amusement and delight turn to fear of the unknown. In Aphra Behn’s The Rover I (1677) and The Rover II (1681), it is possible to analyse the use of the grotesque from either perspective: on the one hand, Behn degrades patriarchal authority through grotesque descriptions and, on the other hand, she portrays the female body in a grotesque way in order to lead male characters to amazement and fear. So, in this paper, I would like to analyse these two different realisations of the grotesque and their implications within two comedies written by the first professional playwright.




Richard Flecknoe and Interregnum drama

Rafael Vélez Núñez

Universidad de Cádiz


Although traditionally neglected by criticism, which considers it as a vacuum, Interregnum drama played an important role in the history of seventeenth-century drama as a whole, as it is witnessed in contemporary approaches to it (Randall, Wiseman). Whereas the tragedies and comedies currently performed in the Caroline stage were banned, new dramatic genres were created, experimented and even performed in determined venues (schools, private houses). It seems paradoxical that the Puritan prohibition to perform somehow helped authors to develop new forms which, not only met the draconian prerequisites of strict morality, but also shed new light on the transformation of court productions, such as masques, and continental works, namely, opera. Among the various playwrights who continued writing during the Interregnum (Shirley, Jordan, Cavendish, Davenant), Richard Flecknoe stands as an important figure in the invention of a new dramatic theory, in which music will become a pivotal factor. Thus in the preface to Ariadne Deserted by Theseus (1654), an adaptation of Monteverdi’s Lamento di Ariadna, Flecknoe celebrates the advantages of recitative music, which is ‘elevated from the vulgar’. This paper will focus in this playwright and in the way his work questioned and revitalized drama. The analysis of his work will help to prove that the Interregnum was a necessary stage for subsequent genres, especially those related to music (musical drama, operas), and themes (heroism, heroic drama).   





Truth and fiction in Margaret Cavendish’s The Blazing World (1666)

Sonia Villegas López

Universidad de Huelva


The Blazing World has been amply studied as a case of generic hybridity, and thus it has been addressed as an example of the comingling of romance, experimental philosophy and science fiction.  In fact, as critics have recently argued, the latter concept defines to perfection Cavendish’s project.  More interesting is even the way the author  blends the objects of fancy and truth, which mirror the design of her original work—being an appendix to her Observations Upon Experimental Philosophy.  In the three sections of The Blazing World, Cavendish considers the notion and the status of truth, wondering about the nature of so-called “improbable truths”.  Her view of the topic contrasts with the monolithic understanding of reason by contemporary male scientists and is in tune with more updated theories on early fictional prose. 







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