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Shakespeare's Sources for Troilus and Cressida

From Troilus and Cressida. Ed. William J. Rolfe. New York: American Book Co.

If Shakespeare did not draw his materials from some earlier play, he probably took "the love-story" from Chaucer's Troilus and Cresseide, and "the camp story" from the Recuyell of the historyes of Troye, translated and drawen out of frenshe into englishe by W. Caxton, 1471 (from Raoul le Fevre's Recueil des Histoires de Troyes), or Lydgate's Hystorye, Sege and dystruccyon of Troye, 1513, 1555 (from Guido di Colonna), or both. Thersites, or at least a hint of the character, seems to be taken from Chapman's Iliad, the first seven books of which appeared in 1597.

Ward (Dramatic Lit, i. 433) remarks: "Though the story of Troy has continued to furnish poetic literature — and especially that of the drama — with themes, I am not aware that any other hand has followed Shakespeare's in reproducing the episode, mediaeval rather than antique in its essence, of Troilus and Cressida.

How to cite this article:
Shakespeare, William. Troilus and Cressida. Ed. William J. Rolfe. New York: American Book Company, 1892. Shakespeare Online. < >.

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Ajax. O thou damned cur! From the edition by William Rolfe, 1892.