• A. L. Rowse


Suddenly, in September 1592, the obscurity in which we have been so long wandering, with Shakespeare, is illuminated by a flash of light : Robert Greene’s attack on him, written when dying, bitter words that tell us a good deal about Greene himself, the rising dramatist of whom he was envious, and the literary life of Elizabethan London. This first reference to Shakespeare in London used to be taken as the starting point of his career as a dramatist. In fact, it is a recognition that he has arrived, that his apprenticeship is virtually behind him, that he is beginning to be well known. He now has a body of work to show. By 1592 he has accomplished the three chronicle plays of Henry VI, The Comedy of Errors and The Two Gentlemen of Verona.


Bitter Word Rare Word Literary Life Alien Immigrant Blank Verse 
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  1. 8.
    Cf. J. Isaacs, ‘shakespeare’s Earliest Years in the Theatre’, Proceedings of the British Academy, 1953, 119 foll.Google Scholar
  2. 19.
    Cf. L. and E. Feasey, ‘Nashe’s The Unfortunate Traveller’, English, Autumn 1948, 125 foll.Google Scholar

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© A. L. Rowse 1963

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  • A. L. Rowse

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