New York Times, MARCH 1, 2006

Double Falsehood, or the Distressed Lovers.

As far back as 1727, Lewis Theobald, an accomplished editor of Shakespeare's works, announced that he had several manuscripts of "Cardenio," which he adapted into a play titled "Double Falsehood, or the Distressed Lovers." Heavily reworked adaptations of older plays, like the remakes of movie classics continually coming out of Hollywood today, were not at all rare at the time.

The original manuscripts that Theobald claimed to have apparently were lost, and so the debate over "Double Falsehood" has raged ever since.

Taylor, like many scholars, accepts Theobald's claim. He is trying to unravel the revisions in "Double Falsehood" to reveal the original "Cardenio." This means deleting passages that seem to be Theobald's and even writing passages that seem to have been cut, based on the way Shakespeare and Fletcher wrote; the original passages in the 1612 translation of "Don Quixote"; and what is known about Theobald's process of adaptation.

The result is not authentic, as Taylor writes in an unpublished essay about the play, "but it is at least, I hope, authentish."

No comments:

Post a Comment