Tag Archives: Twelfth Night or what you will

Why Shakespeare Still Matters

Shakespeare has mattered ever since his name first appeared in print in 1593 with his erotic and entertaining poem, Venus and Adonis. He was 29 years old. For much of the poem the goddess of love is naked and begging for sex before Adonis, but he resists her advances. Venus and Adonis was a sensation […]

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Sonnets for Advent 7: Sonnet 20

Sexual ambiguity – expressed both in appearance of the beloved and through the way in which desire is encountered – crackles through this sonnet. The phrase ‘master-mistress’ seems to relate this poem to Twelfth Night, or What You Will, in which we hear Duke Orsino say to Viola disguised as the page Cesario: ‘And since […]

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Shakespeare and Resurrection

In my last blog, I considered how Good Friday influenced Shakespeare’s imagination. We are now properly in Eastertide (forty days from Easter Day) and it is not surprising that the Resurrection of Jesus (or ‘uprising’ as William Tyndale referred to it) made such a considerable impact on Shakespeare’s imagination. Shakespeare is not telling the Christian […]

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Shakespeare’s Epiphany, or what you will

Yesterday was Twelfth Night, a time of misrule to mark the end of the twelve days of Christmas. Today is the Feast of Epiphany, it’s a time for revelations, both small and great. For Shakespeare it’s also ‘Or what you will’ season. Twelfth Night, or what you will is the only one of his plays […]

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DESTINATION SHAKESPEARE, THE DEBUT POETRY COLLECTION FROM LEADING SHAKESPEAREAN SCHOLAR PAUL EDMONDSON, IS OUT NOW!

24 brilliant poems, inspired by Shakespeare's life and art, bound in an artisan stitched chapbook

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