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of league or compromise between the hostile forces of lyric and dramatic inspiration. In the earlier plays dramatic fitness is often sacrificed to the craving for poetic selfexpression. In Edward II the attention to stage requirements and dramatic structure tends frequently to banish some of the subtler and sweeter qualities of Marlowe's verse; or if the lyric vein finds here and there an outlet, it bursts forth as unsubdued as ever, throwing off the restrictions of dramatic propriety and launching into declamation as eloquent and as uncritical as that of Tamburlaine itself. In his last great tragedy Marlowe shows no more than in his first an ability to fuse these two main elements of dramatic poetry. The incapacity to do so is doubtless fundamental, and it explains better than anything else why Marlowe's genius could never have developed as that of Shakespeare did.
Source. The main source of Edward II is Holinshed's Chronicle, from which Marlowe has selected the material for his tragedy with the imaginative freedom characteristic of Shakespeare's use of the same historian. Chronological accuracy is not attempted, but the true meaning of history is faithfully represented. The Scottish jig (II. 990-997) is derived from the Chronicles of Fabyan, and one or two other incidents, unrecorded in Holinshed, have been traced to the General Chronicle of John Stowe. The relation of the play to each of these three works has been worked out with some elaborateness by C. Tzschaschel1 in a Halle dissertation, and the same general results are recorded independently in the introductions to the editions of Tancock and Fleay.
1 Marlowe's Edward II und seine Quellen, 1902.
Readings of MS. fragment in South Kensington Museum (6209), purporting to represent edition of that year.
Quarto edition of that year.
Text of play in Dodsley's Old Plays, ed. 1744, vol. ii.
ed. 1780, vol. ii. ed. 1825, vol. ii. Ancient British Drama, vol. i.
Old English Plays, 1814, 1815.
Robinson's edition of Marlowe, 1826.
Text of the play in Works of the British Dramatists,
Temple Dramatists' edition of the play, 1896.
J. B's conjectures in copy of Rob. (Brit. Mus. 11771d).
The troublesome raigne and la-
Enter Gauestone reading on a letter that was
My father is deceast, come Gaueston,
And share the kingdom with thy deerest friend.
Sweete prince I come, these these thy amorous lines,
1 Add. Dyce.
Heading The troublesome.. Mortimer om. 1598 etc. Scene I. add. Rob. S.D. reading on] reading of ?1593 these] these ?1593