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The Quest for CardenioShakespeare, Fletcher, Cervantes, and the Lost Play$
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David Carnegie and Gary Taylor

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199641819

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2012

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199641819.001.0001

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Four Characters in Search of a Subplot: Quixote, Sancho, and Cardenio

Four Characters in Search of a Subplot: Quixote, Sancho, and Cardenio

(p.192) 10 Four Characters in Search of a Subplot: Quixote, Sancho, and Cardenio
The Quest for Cardenio

Gary Taylor

John V. Nance

Oxford University Press

This chapter pursues conjectures by earlier scholars that the Jacobean play The History of Cardenio contained a subplot, traces of which survive in Lewis Theobald’s Double Falsehood, which is anomalously short. It gives reasons for believing that the original play contained more material from Don Quixote, related to the Cardenio story there, and then focuses on two scenes and four characters that seem to be relics of that subplot: the two Gentlemen in 4.2 and Fabian and Lopez in 2.1. It connects these characters to Quixote, Sancho, the Barber, and the Curate. It then uses a variety of stylometric tests to establish that four of the speeches of Fabian and Lopez were written by Shakespeare toward the end of his career, with a fifth apparently by Fletcher, and that the speeches of Henriquez in 2.1 contain large amounts of writing by Theobald.

Keywords:   Cardenio, Shakespeare, Fletcher, Theobald, Cervantes, stylometrics, subplot

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