This is the most thoroughly investigated edition of Volpone to date, based on a wider collation of the 1607 quarto and 1616 folio versions than was previously possible. It calls into question several accepted textual conclusions. The introduction sets Volpone in the context of Jonson's career at the time of writing and introduces new material on its relation to the Reynard beast epic and the commedia dell' arte. Ambiguities in the play are discussed with reference to two Renaissance perversions of the myth of the Golden Age. Particular attention is paid to the rhythmic effects of the play in performance, especially interweavings of the main plot and subplot. Fresh suggestions are made about the play's opening and its controversial conclusion in the light of experiments that have been made in performance since Volpone 's stage revival in 1921. The modernized text is accompanied by full commentary, notes and illustrations.
The appendices include a discussion by John Cutts of the original music, passages translated from the original sources and analogues, and a full record of the play's modern stage history, its many adaptations, and its transformations into opera, musical comedy, film and television.
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(240mm x 138mm x 21mm)
Manchester University Press
Publisher: Manchester University Press
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Author Biography - Ben Jonson
Brian Parker is Emeritus Professor of English at Trinity College, University of Toronto