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Tamburlaine the Great - Part 2

Christopher Marlowe

Book Overview: 

Tamburlaine the Great is the name of a play in two parts by Christopher Marlowe. It is loosely based on the life of the Central Asian emperor, Timur 'the lame'. Written in 1587 or 1588, the play is a milestone in Elizabethan public drama; it marks a turning away from the clumsy language and loose plotting of the earlier Tudor dramatists, and a new interest in fresh and vivid language, memorable action, and intellectual complexity. Along with Thomas Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy, it may be considered the first popular success of London's public stage.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .That danc'd with glory on the silver waves, Now wants the fuel that inflam'd his beams; And all with faintness, and for foul disgrace, He binds his temples with a frowning cloud, Ready to darken earth with endless night. Zenocrate, that gave him light and life, Whose eyes shot fire from their 82 ivory brows, 83 And temper'd every soul with lively heat, Now by the malice of the angry skies, Whose jealousy admits no second mate, Draws in the comfort of her latest breath, All dazzled with the hellish mists of death. Now walk the angels on the walls of heaven, As sentinels to warn th' immortal souls To entertain divine Zenocrate: Apollo, Cynthia, and the ceaseless lamps That gently look'd upon this 84 loathsome earth, Shine downwards now no more, but deck the heavens To entertain divine Zenocrate: The crystal springs, whose taste illuminates Refined eyes with an eternal s. . . Read More

Community Reviews

Not thrilling. I was disappointed. Perhaps I expected the talent of a peer: Shakespeare that is.

I am a great fan of Christopher Marlowe, both of his poetry and his plays. The Everyman edition that I own has held up under some pretty heavy usage, as I tend to mark up a book until it vomits pages. Good thing I own this one.

Marlowe's choice of subjects for plays always dumbfounded me. He went fo

Evidently, this play is not published by itself. I am planning on reading more Marlowe this year, but this review reference "Edward II." I've gotten a bee in my bonnet to read the history plays of Shakespeare now that "Edward III" has been entered into the canon. I read it a few months ago and I wil