THE COMEDY OF ERRORS
A farcical comedy of mistaken identity and outrageous trickery, William Shakespeare's The Comedy of Errors is edited by Stanley Wells with an introduction by Randall Martin in Penguin Shakespeare. 'We'll leave a proof, by that which we will do, wives may be merry, and yet honest too.' Two sets of identical twins - Dromio and Antipholus of Syracuse, and their brothers Dromio and Antipholus of Ephesus - having been separated at sea as children, find themselves in the same city for the first time as adults. Soon, their friends mistake the twins for one another and bewilderment abounds, as the wife of one man declares the other to be her husband, pronouncing him mad when he denies the claim. Exuberant, complex and brilliantly farcical, this is a hilarious comedy of confusion and ultimate reunion. This book contains a general introduction to Shakespeare's life and Elizabethan theatre, a separate introduction to The Comedy of Errors, a chronology, suggestions for further reading, an essay discussing performance options on both stage and screen, and a commentary. William Shakespeare (1564-1616) was born to John Shakespeare and Mary Arden some time in late April 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon. He wrote about 38 plays (the precise number is uncertain), many of which are regarded as the most exceptional works of drama ever produced, including Romeo and Juliet (1595), Henry V (1599), Hamlet (1601), Othello (1604), King Lear (1606) and Macbeth (1606), as well as a collection of 154 sonnets, which number among the most profound and influential love-poetry in English. If you enjoyed The Comedy of Errors, you might like A Midsummer Night's Dream, also available in Penguin Shakespeare. "After God, Shakespeare has created most." (Alexandre Dumas).