'The London Prodigal': A critical edition in modern spelling

by Arulanandam, Santha Devi

Abstract (Summary)
This thesis presents a critical edition in modern spelling of The London Prodigal, a comedy played by the King's Men and printed in 1605 by Thomas Creede for the publisher Nathaniel Butter. The title-page (photographically reproduced) attributes the play to William Shakespeare. This claim is assessed and judged to be mistaken. Both external and internal evidence have been examined in relation to eight possible authorship candidates; Thomas Dekker emerges as the strongest. The present text of the play is based on the 1605 Quarto. Collation of twelve copies revealed several press variants. The introduction treats the play's publication and stage-history and takes a critical look at its background and sources, plot and structure, setting, characters, style, themes, and role in the development of Elizabethan-Jacobean drama. An attempt is made to determine the date of composition, as well as the author. A short section is devoted to conjecture about the manuscript copy used for the Quarto and to bibliographical deductions about its treatment in the printing-house. A full commentary glosses obscurities and enlarges on the play's literary, social, and historical allusions. There are textual notes on variants, emendations, and lineation. An appendix reproduces the parable of the Prodigal Son from the 1568 Bishops' Bible.
Bibliographical Information:


School:The University of Auckland / Te Whare Wananga o Tamaki Makaurau

School Location:New Zealand

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:literature english 0593 theater 0465


Date of Publication:01/01/1989

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