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One of Shakespeare's most haunting and enigmatic late plays, The Winter's Tale is a fine example of Shakespeare's fascination with the dramatic genre of "romance": the portrayal of magical lands, familial conflict and exile, and final reunion and reconciliation. Drawing on Robert Green's story Pandosto, Shakespeare play tells the story of the middle-aged Leontes, king of Sicilia, and his childhood friend Polixenes, the king of Bohemia. Leontes mistakenly believes that his friend is having an affair with his wife, Hermione. In his jealousy, and consumed by "tremor cordis", he tries to murder Polixenes, who flees, and accuses his wife of adultery. Hermione gives birth to a baby girl, Perdita, who Leontes denounces as illegitimate, and casts her out into the wilderness. Hermione is ultimately proved innocent, but her son, Mamillius, dies of grief. Hermione collapses, apparently dead, and Leontes is left to pick up the tragic consequences of his actions. Time passes, and the action moves to Bohemia, where the lost child Perdita has grown up a shepherdess in the midst of "great creating nature". The final scenes of the play draw towards resolution and reconciliation between Leontes, Hermione and their lost daughter, culminating in one of Shakespeare's most moving final scenes. One of Shakespeare's most consummate plays, The Winter's Tale is a fascinating study of male insecurity and the relations between art and nature. --Jerry Brotton. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
The Winter's Tale is a lot of things: heart-breaking, exhilerating, funny, beautiful, romantic, profound, etc. Yeah, it's all here. Read morePublished on May 27 2003 by Oddsfish
a good read, but can be confusing for kids. It takes a while to comprehend all of the Shakespearian langauge, but is very interesting. It is boring at parts.Published on May 20 2003
A sad romantic play about human behavior and emotions ...a merciless decision issued by the king Leontes against his wife Hermione and his boyhood friend Polixenes is the shocking... Read morePublished on July 29 2002 by rannoon
The Winter's Tale contains some of the most technically difficult solutions to telling a story that have ever appeared in a play. Read morePublished on Oct. 18 2001 by Donald Mitchell
This play, in my opinion, is Shakespeare's greatest. It doesn't have the great quotes or the great characters or the action of many of his plays, but it has a 'Surprise Twist'... Read morePublished on Sept. 18 2001 by "kenamat"
For me The Winter's Tale is the most satisfying of Shakespeare's plays. And why? It may not be Hamlet for tragedy, it may not be Twelfth Night for comedy -- indeed, perhaps in... Read morePublished on July 21 2001 by Henry Ehrman
I really, really liked this play. This was my third of Shakespeare's, and I was pleased to discover that I hadn't wasted my time reading it. Oh, how sorry I felt for Hermione! Read morePublished on Dec 10 2000 by Kirby Frank
"A sad tale's best for winter." And this tale is full of misperceived motives, anger, absurdities, seeming tragedy, and hysterical comedy. Read morePublished on June 4 2000 by NotATameLion