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Posts Tagged ‘Mercutio’

Shakespeare’s life is equated with the Elizabethan Age. Such is his genius. One might wonder how can a young lad with modicum of education, -typical grammar school syllabus with its devotion to Ovid, Bible and Prayer Book , unlike his contemporary Marlow who went to the University, surpass all others to be the representative man of the Age. It is such a serious question that defies a rational answer and many scholars have hazarded a theory to aver Bacon as the real author. As with every theory it has its supporters but literature is not respecter of class or scholarship. It has to smell life in its naturalness, even coarseness has its part. Scholarship can make a horse run to win the Derby but cannot make it fly like Pegasus. Here is the difference between Shakespeare and his rivals. His line trots and when flies it takes our breath away.

So what was the secret of William Shakespeare? I shall come to it by and by. Beginning as a player he became the most celebrated playwright of the Age. It was a time when poets were considered a cut above the players similar to the subtle social distinctions that marked a composer than a flautist in the Baroque Age. He made wise career moves in taking shares of the Lord Chamberlain’s Company at its inception in 1594 and his star rose as with the fortunes of the Company. Its popularity was such its players were elevated to be regarded as the King’s Men on James I accession in 1603. He ended up as part owner of the Blackfriar’s theatre. In short his sound business acumen made him as the Stratford lad who made good in the City of London.

Intelligence he had aplenty as his life in bare essentials would prove. His imagination was of such ethereal quality that he could put words in the mouth of Mercutio and we feel we know Queen Mab as though from direct experience. Never has any one excelled in poetic fancies as shown in the plays like Othello or Antony and Cleopatra. One can imagine it coming out like a single sweep of imagination, theme and coloring adding to the line- richness and vibrancy as the Renaissance palette of a Tintorotto or a Vernese. In the latter play especially ‘his language reaches heights and depths never reached before or excelled since.’

Not poppy, nor mandragora,

Nor all the drowsy syrups of the world,

Shall ever medicine thee to that sweet sleep..” (Ot.AcIII sc.3: 330)

Negative capability as defined by John Keats explains the ability of Shakespeare, whose academic credentials were merely rudimentary, to have excelled himself in writing plays that bear his name. The Bard of Avon despite his negative capability made up by exercising his imagination. Such is imagination and it belongs to the inner world.

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How rational mind may lay bare our world in terms of use and purpose is like putting together a newspaper which once read is outdated. Mere facts help one negotiate his world adequately. Shakespeare’s King Lear or Hamlet and Macbeth hold freshness that is beyond fads and facts. Works such as these are drawn by imagination,- or in a manner of speaking, lay bare the truth that animates human soul. Imagination ranging through inner world can give human experience various shades of meaning and reveal them to others. The Bard surpassed himself and his lines consequently acquired beauty and truth to delight great many.

benny

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Mohammed Merah, the 23-year-old French gunman who confessed to killing seven people in the city of Toulouse in southwest France, is dead after being shot in the head by a police sniper during a final dramatic shootout with French police. It was the culmination of a 31-hour standoff with hundreds of French anti-terror police who had surrounded the building where Merah had barricaded himself.
French Interior Minister Claude Gueant told reporters Thursday that Merah had ceased communicating with negotiators around midnight, after discussing a possible surrender, giving rise to speculation he might have committed suicide. “But when heavily armed paramilitary police entered the apartment through the door and several windows about 10:30 a.m., Gueant said, Merah burst out of the bathroom, blasting away with several weapons,” the Washington Post’s Edward Cody reported. Gueant said Mareh had fired at police before jumping out of the window where “he was found dead on the ground below.”
Can a wrong be avenged by a wrong? No.
For the Jews and Arabs no amount of arguments or apologies will do. Time for live and let live approach has been found useless. Blood has been spilt and and it has spilled from Palestine area to all over the cities and town. Toulouse is the latest name to see the wanton mindless killing of the innocent children by a terrorist. The world is accessory to the butchers at work and they are at work with the blessings of their peers, where the rabbis and mullahs are merely beasts with modes of dress all slightly altered to give the religion a cloak. They sustain murder for all their Scriptures. Religion has taught them both nothing.
These killings for a wrong somewhere in mindless past( so old it all seems to be relevant) shall go on and the fools may die with a thought they died for a cause. Once again another killing and it would signal the death of the last victim was a waste. Thus the cause is buried under the pile of the dead and the cause even if is removed has created so much evil as a result.
Having seen these and for so long I can only say with Mercutio in Romeo and Juliet,’A Plague o’ both your houses!’
Let there be not a single healthy olive tree or date tree ever grow from all that blood drenched accursed soil.
benny

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