Literary party about Shakespeare

Н.Г. Егошина,
МБОУ "Гимназия № 14 г. Йошкар-Олы"
Йошкар-Ола, 2016 г.

Литературный вечер, посвященный творчеству В. Шекспира.
Мероприятие состоит из трех частей. На первом этапе ученики представляют презентацию о жизни и творчестве поэта. На втором этапе проводится литературная викторина по теме. Третий этап представляет собой ролевую игру "Суд над жестокостью" по произведению В. Шекспира "Король Лир". Ролевая игра может быть проведена и как отдельное мероприятие.
1. W. Shakespeare (1564 - 1616) was born on 23 April 1564 in Stratford-upon-Avon in the family of a glove-maker. He was christened in the Holy Trinity Church. At the age of 18 he married Ann Hathaway and became the father of three children: Susan, Hamnet and Judith. In 1587 young William left for London, became an actor and started to write plays.
2. Created more than three centuries ago, Shakespeare's comedies, tragedies and historical chronicles have still been living, have still been worrying and have still been shaken the imagination of the spectators. Shakespeare is the author of 37 plays, 2 poems and 154 sonnets, which are remarkable for strong feelings and deep thoughts. Shakespeare's works are the summit in the development of culture in the epoch of Renaissance.
3. The first period of Shakespeare's literary career occupies four years. It can be called the period of imitation. He is under the influence of his great predecessors.
Young Romeo and Juliet - the characters of the first great tragedy - are passionately in love with each other. But their love run against the insuperable obstacle - the animosity of their families. In the struggle against old prejudices, against bloody and senseless laws, Romeo and Juliet died. But their love symbolizes the high moral victory. Their love lasted only for a few days, but it was a real battle for free life and for human rights. Their death manifested the new life principles - the principles of peace, love and devotion.
4. The main idea of the second period is the merry light-hearted use of life. Its central character is Sir John Falstaff. He is a born poet and a sensible philosopher, who is famous for brilliancy of wit and satisfaction of his bodily physical needs.
In the last play of this period - "The Twelfth Night" - Shakespeare tried to return to this character. So Sir Toby is the second version of Sir Falstaff.
During this period Shakespeare also wrote "The Taming of the Shrew", where the reader can feel a bit of rude mockery at women; and the graceful poetic play "Midsummer's night dream", where he embodied the image of youth, spent in open meadows and thick forests.
5. The third period in Shakespeare's creativity is the period of soul gloom and darkness. One of the most famous plays of this period is "Hamlet". The action takes place in a city in Denmark, 38 km to the north of Copenhagen.
Hamlet's father was killed by his uncle - his dad's brother Claudius. After his crime he inherits the throne and becomes the King of Denmark. His mother married Claudius just after the assassination. Ophelia, a young girl who is passionately in love with Hamlet, goes mad and dies because Hamlet doesn't believe her anymore and tells her to go to the convent. At the end of the tragedy, when Hamlet's friend Horatio wants to drink poison to die together with Hamlet, Hamlet asks him not to do it. Hamlet explains that his duty is to tell people what has happened.
Prince Hamlet expresses the new ideas of the new epoch - the Renaissance. He lost his father but soon he found out that he had been killed and the murderer - his brother, Hamlet's uncle Claudius. The tragedy depicts how at first Hamlet reveals the hypocrisy of his uncle, and then takes revenge on him.
6. Julius Caesar was written during the second period as well, but due to the problems, raised here, it is related to the third period. In this drama Shakespeare showed the wreck of his best political ideals.
Shakespeare depicts the political plot for the sake of the rescue of the Republic. Caesar is striving for individual power. After long speculations his best friend Brut by name came to the conclusion to join the conspiracy. The monologue of Brut reminds here the monologue of Hamlet: their thoughts sound alike. Caesar's assassination leads to the Civil war, in which the Republic's supporters are defeated, the winners - the supporters of Monarchy - organize bloody savage reprisal with their enemies. Anthony and Octavos, the future emperor Octavian August executed a hundred of senators.
7. In "Othello" Shakespeare describes the horrors which are hidden under the roses of love. The Moor, Othello by name, is a man of free and open nature. Desdemona, a daughter of a merchant from Venice, falls in love with him and runs away from her parents' house to become his wife. Othello says about her: "She is beautiful, likes companies, is good at dancing and singing". Othello's helper Yago is also crazy about a pretty woman but she doesn't reciprocate his affection. He plans to get his revenge. Yago makes Othello believe that his wife isn't faithful to him and the Moor makes up his mind to punish her by strangling. Before her death Desdemona is singing a song about a willow. It is a symbol of a woman who is left by her lover. Even her name - Desdemona - means "ill-fated".
8. In "King Lear" Shakespeare depicts the ingratitude of the closest people. At the beginning of the play King Lear is a typical medieval king. He is sure that he is given power by God and he can do whatever he desires. He demands from people only outer obedience, making it equal to true love and devotion.
His two elder daughters say to him sweet words and they are awarded with the kingdom. But the youngest daughter Cordelia can't express her deep love in simple words and her father leaves her no property. The heritage is divided between the two elder sisters while Cordelia has to leave her father's palace.
In the long run King Lear loses his power and fortune, moreover, he loses his home and is wandering in the surroundings. He is suffering from hunger, perfidy and betrayal. He starts to understand what true and sincere feelings are.
At the end of the play, when King Lear is abandoned, lonely, cold, hungry and mad, he finds shelter at his third daughter's place. It is Cordelia who gives him a helping hand. The ending of the play is awful - The elder sisters kill each other, Cordelia is strangled, King Lear dies.
9. The historical tragedy "Henry VI" is devoted to the War of Red and White Roses. The main characters are Henry VI, Queen Margaret, Duke of Gloster, his opponent Cardinal of Winchester, Duke of York and his sons - Edward, Clarions and Richard - the future king Richard III.
Richard commits a lot of crimes. He is called the" bloody tyrant" , the "poisonous toad" and the "outcome of the hell". The well-known monologue about conscience is being pronounced by Richard at the moment when he is terrified by his nightmare. In his dream he constantly sees the ghosts of people whom he murdered. They prophesy him forthcoming death.
10. In "Macbeth" the action takes place in Scotland. In the opening scenes two Scottish generals, Macbeth and Banquo, are on the way home after the battle. As they are crossing a wild and lonely heath, they meet the three witches. The witches make a surprising prophecy. They prophesy that Macbeth will become the Thane of Cawdor and then King. Duncan, the King visits Macbeth's castle. Macbeth murders him. Then he has Banquo murdered. Banquo's ghost haunts Macbeth. He returns to find the three witches. They warn him about Mucduff. Macbeth has Lady Mucduff and her children murdered. At the end of the play, after a long series of crimes, Macbeth is killed, his wife goes mad and dies.
11. Shakespeare died on the day of his birth, on April 23, 1616, at the age of 52. He was buried in the Holy Trinity Church in Stratford-upon-Avon, which is today always full of tourists who come here to get in touch with the spirit of a genius person and a talented playwright.

"He was the man not only of his epoch, but the man of all times"
Ben Johnson
William Shakespeare
a quiz about his life and his immortal works
(to the 400th anniversary of his death)
1. When was Shakespeare born?
a. 1564
b. 1664
c. 1764
d. 1864
2. W. Shakespeare was born on 23 August. This day is considered to be the Day of ...
a. St. Patrick, patron of Ireland.
b. St. George, patron of England.
c. St. Andrew, patron of Scotland.
d. St. Sergey Radonezhsky.
3. Where was Shakespeare born?
a. Stratford, England.
b. Stratford, the USA
c. Stratford, Australia.
d. Stratford, Canada.
4. What river does Stratford stand upon?
a. Thames.
b. Clyde.
c. Tweed.
d. Avon.
5. What does his surname in translation mean?
a. Shaking with a sword.
b. Shaking with a bow.
c. Shaking with a gun.
d. Shaking with a spear.
6. What was John's (William's father's) occupation?
a. He was a shoe-maker.
b. He was a hat-maker.
c. He was a glove-maker.
d. He was a dress-maker.
7. What did William's father pay big fines for?
a. He often broke road rules.
b. He didn't visit Sunday service in church.
c. He was a regular pub-goer and a heavy drinker.
d. He often had rows with his neighbours.
8. William was the ... child in the family.
a. First
b. Second
c. Third
d. Fourth
9. How many children were born in John Shakespeare's family?
a. 6.
b. 7.
c. 8.
d. 9.
8. At what age did William marry Anne Hatteway?
a. At the age of 18.
b. At the age of 28.
c. At the age of 38.
d. At the age of 48.
9. How many daughters were born in William and Anne' family?
a. One.
b. Two.
c. Three.
d. Four.
10. What was W. Shakespeare's son's name?
a. Hamnet.
b. Hamlet.
c. Horatio.
d. Nickolas.
11. What was William's first position in the theatre?
a. He was an actor.
b. He was a director.
c. He was a stage worker.
d. He was a groom.
12. In 1594 William became the co-owner of the theatrical company. What was its name?
a. "King's servants".
b. "Lord- Chamberlain's servants".
c. "Queen's servants".
d. "People's servants".
13. In 1599 the company built a new theatre on the southern bank of the Thames. How was it called?
a. "The Planet".
b. "The Globe".
c. "The Great".
d. "Our world".
14. What was the reason for the fire due to which the theatre was completely ruined?
a. It was the enemies' arson.
b. It took place during the Great Fire of London.
c. The reason is still unknown.
d. During the performance the cannon on the stage shot and the straw roof of the theatre set on fire.
15. Why wasn't William as a playwright famous during his lifetime?
a. Theatrical art was considered to be entertainment for the low class.
b. The name of the author was concealed due to some reasons.
c. There were a lot of other more successful writers.
d. His works were not interesting for his contemporaries.
16. Only in the year of 1597 the name of William Shakespeare appeared on the front list of the written edition of his play. What was the name of the play?
a. "Midsummer night's dream".
b. "Much ado about nothing".
c. "Fruitless efforts of love".
d. "Comedy of errors".
17. How many plays did Shakespeare write?
a. 28.
b. 38.
c. 48.
d. 58.
18. How many sonnets did Shakespeare write?
a. 144.
b. 154.
c. 164.
d. 174.
19. What is a sonnet?
a. A poem of 12 lines.
b. A poem of 14 lines.
c. A poem of 16 lines.
d. A poem of any number of lines.
20. What is sonnet № 126 distinguished by?
a. It has more lines than all the rest sonnets.
b. It has less lines than all the rest sonnets.
c. It is devoted to W. Shakespeare's mother.
d. It is not rhymed.
20. What is the title of the only tragedy where a noble man is transformed into a villain?
a. "Hamlet".
b. "King Lear".
c. "Macbeth".
d. "Romeo and Juliet".
21. What character from W. Shakespeare's plays is called "Zero without figures" by his own jester (clown)?
a. King Lear.
b. Prince Hamlet.
c. Othello.
d. Henry VI.
22. What is the name of the first printed Shakespeare's work?
a. "Merchant of Venice".
b. "Two gentlemen from Verona".
c. "Venus and Adonis".
d. "Midsummer night's dream".
23. What is the name of the wittiest female character from the play "Much ado about nothing"?
a. Catherine.
b. Olivia.
c. Ophelia.
d. Beatrice.
24. In what comedy does the monologue of one of the characters begin with the well-known words: "The whole world is the theatre, the people are the actors..."
a. "How would you like that?"
b. "The twelfth night".
c. "Midsummer night's dream".
d. "The taming of the Shrew".
25. What was the name of the third King Lear's daughter, at whose place he found shelter in the long run?
a. Desdemona.
b. Ophelia.
c. Cordelia.
d. Regna.
26. Where did the action of the tragedy "Hamlet" take place?
a. England.
b. Scotland.
c. Denmark.
d. Switzerland.
27. What does the name of one of the female characters "Desdemona" mean?
a. Strangled.
b. Ill-fated.
c. Unfaithful.
d. Jealous man's wife.
28. In what work did Shakespeare describe the War of Red and White Roses?
a. Coriolanus.
b. Henry VI.
c. Julius Caesar.
d. Timmons from Athens.
29. What Russian composer wrote music to the ballet "Romeo and Juliet"?
a. P. Tchaikovsky.
b. S. Prokofiev.
c. M. Glinka.
d. M. Mussorgsky.
30. What composer was the author of music in the opera "Othello"?
a. Verdi.
b. Rossini.
c. Adan.
d. Huno.
31. What character said the following: "Our personality is a garden, our will is its gardener".

a. Yago ("Othello").
b. Juliet (Romeo and Juliet").
c. The first fisherman ("Pericles").
d. Martsell ("Hamlet")
32. Who of the characters said: "Words are like a wind, rude words are like a draught which is rather harmful"?
a. Sitsiny ("Coriolanus").
b. Gratian ("A merchant from Venice").
c. Turio ("Two gentlemen from Verona").
d. Beatrice ("Much ado about nothing").
33. W. Shakespeare died at the age of ...
a. 42 years old.
b. 52 years old.
c. 62 years old.
d. 72 years old.
34. Where was he buried?
a. In St. Paul's Cathedral in London.
b. In Westminster Abbey in London.
c. In Hole Trinity Church in Stratford.
d. On city cemetery not far from Stratford.
35. What geographical object bears the name of W. Shakespeare?
a. The Channel in the North Sea.
b. The Crater on the Mercury.
c. The Mount in Scotland.
d. The Lake on the Moon.
36. Who was the last straight Shakespeare's descendant?
a. His elder daughter's daughter called Elizabeth.
b. His granddaughter's daughter called Helen.
c. His younger daughter's daughter called Ann.
d. His younger daughter's son called Thomas.
37. Who translated Shakespeare's sonnets into the Russian language?
a. S. Marshak.
b. R. Chukovsky.
c. A. Akhmatova.
d. I. Brodsky.
38. How was the poet-translator awarded for his work?
a. He got the Nobel prize.
b. He got the Lenin prize.
c. He got the Stalin prize.
d. He got the prize of the Soviet Writers' Union.
39. Who translated the dramatic works of Shakespeare into the Russian language?
a. S. Shenbaum.
b. T.L. Tsepkina-Kupernik.
c. L.N. Tolstoy.
d. F. Bomont.
40. What modern work of literature is based on Shakespeare's tragedies?
a. "The secret of Shakespeare" by J.L. Carrell.
b. "The enigma of Shakespeare" by J.L. Carrell .
c. "The error of Shakespeare" by J.L. Carrell.
d. "The trick of Shakespeare" by J.L. Carrell .

based on Shakespeare's tragedy "KING LEAR"
a role play for students of 8-11 grades
Actuary: All rise. The Judge is coming!
All the present rise to their feet. A judge in a black gown is entering the court room.
Judge: Do sit down! The Court of Law is investigating the case of murder committed with unprecedented cruelty, that was carried out by a group of people who were in collusion with each other. In the dock are the two women - Goneril and Regan, the daughters of King Lear. They are accused of heartless and savage attitude towards their father, of leaving a feeble old man in a dangerous situation, which entailed serious consequences, i.e. led to his downfall. The women in the dock are blamed for the crime that fall under Article 105, Part 2, item "d" of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation. The mentioned act is qualified as a complete murder. The accused, do you understand what you are charged with?
Regan and Goneril: Yes, Your Honour.
Judge: Do admit your fault?
Regana and Goneril: No, Your Honour.
Judge: At the sitting of the Court are present: Public Prosecutor, Public Barrister, witnesses for the prosecution and defense, the Jury. The main aim of the Jury is to listen to the case, to investigate the events, to weigh all the positive and negative arguments and reasons and finally to render a just verdict.
First, we call to the legal proceedings Mr. Public Prosecutor.
Public Prosecutor: Respected Court! Respected Jury and all the participants of the trial! Today we are to examine the case and to state the level of guilt of the two young women who are accused of the murder of their own father. The side of the prosecution is going to prove that being mendacious, lying and despotic by nature, being rather cruel and perfidious, the women in the dock straightly provided for their father's death, who brought them up, fed them, presented them with fashionable outfits and jewelry, gifted them with his care and cordial attention. They used hypocrisy and dissimilation to own his acquired property. Then they committed a crime against morality: they broke all possible ethic norms and regulations, centuries-old traditions of paying special respect to parents and moreover, became the cause of the old man's death. They made him leave the house in the cold nasty evening. This deed can be qualified as a crime of forethought performed with particular severity. In this case the mentioned above term means that the crime was accompanied with additional sufferings of the victim both physical (he underwent severe trials connected with low temperatures) and moral (he had to experience his daughters' betrayal and perfidy. He also had to suffer from long deprivation of food and drink. He had a rough time under the conditions that could seriously damage his health). The particular savage was manifested in the fact that the accused were aware of the grievous state of their father but even didn't make a try to help him.
Judge: The Court is calling Mr. Public Barrister to present the case from his point of view.
Barrister: The Honoured Court! The Respected Jury! We are intending to refute the deeds that the defendants are charged with. We will prove that the victim himself provoked the conflict situation. Being a man with quick tempo, with badly-balanced character, King Lear insulted his daughters. Instead of listening to common sense and apologizing to Reran and Goneril and in that way correcting the
situation and stopping the row, King Lear on his own free will left the house and condemned himself to wanderings. We will demonstrate some evidence that if the deed of the accused were to some extend incorrect from the moral point of view, they were completely the result of poor family treatment and wrong education process on the part of his parent.
Judge: To study the case is calling Mr. W. Shakespeare, the representative of the injured party, the eye-witness of King Lear's life.
Your name is William Shakespeare, you live in London and you are an actor, a playwright and a co-owner of the theatrical company. It that right?
W. Shakespeare: Everything is correct.
Judge: Mr. Shakespeare, don't forget you are in jeopardy for giving false evidence. Mr. Prosecutor, your questions to the witness.
Prosecutor: Mr. Shakespeare, since what time have you known King Lear and his family?
W. Shakespeare: I have got acquainted with this family in 1605. I must say King Lear was a typical medieval king. He lived in a castle together with his daughters and his servants. He had a large suite, his court was flourishing, his off-springs didn't know any refusal in anything. They were living in prosperity, were having great time at the informal parties and at the balls. The King always indulged all their caprices, carried out their wishes and desires.
The pictures of a castle, its interiors, ceremonies of formal dinner-parties and banquets are shown on the screen.
Prosecutor: Mr. Shakespeare, do you know whether King Lear took care of the future of their daughters? If yes, what form did those actions took place?
W. Shakespeare: Naturally. He was looking for the worthy men who could be their fiancés and later beloved husbands. He promised them good dowry. He sometimes discussed the candidates with me and asked me for a piece of advice. The video recording of one of our friendly talks, where the grooms were also present, is at Court's disposal. I ask your permit ion to demonstrate this tape.
Judge: No objections. Mr. Actuary, will you help us with the video tape?
A Student in King Lear's costume is reciting a fragment from the tragedy:
Meantime we shall express our darker purpose.Give me the map there. Know that we have dividedIn three our kingdom: and ’tis our fast intentTo shake all cares and business from our age;Conferring them on younger strengths, while weUnburthen’d crawl toward death. Our son of Cornwall,And you, our no less loving son of Albany,We have this hour a constant will to publishOur daughters’ several dowers, that future strifeMay be prevented now. The princes, France and Burgundy,Great rivals in our youngest daughter’s love,Long in our court have made their amorous sojourn,And here are to be answer’d.
Prosecutor: I have no more questions to the witness. I can quietly see the atmosphere the accused were living in.
Judge: Mr. Barrister, the witness is at your disposal.
Barrister: Mr. Shakespeare, could you tell the Court, what the main criterion of the division of the property among the daughters was? Can we see it on the mentioned above tape?
W. Shakespeare: Sure, I do remember it. King Lear worshiped his daughters and I suppose he had the right for the reciprocal feelings. That's why he decided that the daughter who loved him more, would get the larger part of his property. It is on the mentioned video tape.
Judge: Do, rewind the type and let us see the scene.
A Student in King Lear's costume is reciting a fragment from the tragedy:
Tell me, my daughters,–Since now we will divest us both of rule,Interest of territory, cares of state,–Which of you shall we say doth love us most?That we our largest bounty may extendWhere nature doth with merit challenge.
Of all these bounds, even from this line to this,With shadowy forests and with champains rich’d,With plenteous rivers and wide-skirted meads,We make thee lady: to thine and Albany’s issueBe this perpetual. What says our second daughter,Our dearest Regan, wife to Cornwall? Speak.
To thee and thine hereditary everRemain this ample third of our fair kingdom;No less in space, validity, and pleasure,Than that conferr’d on Goneril
Barrister: The King took the wrong step, accepting the flattering empty words for sincere feelings of his daughters. The Respected Jury, we see that King Lear himself cultivated flattery and dissimulation in them.
Judge: Mr. Barrister, I ask you to refrain from making such remarks and conclusions. We will have pleadings for them a bit later. Now we are just listening to the facts and investigating the reasoning.
Barrister: I beg your pardon, Your Honour.
Judge: Do you have any more questions to the witness?
Prosecutor: No. No questions.
Barrister: I have no questions, but I have a solicitation. I ask to invite the witness for the defense the Duke of Burgundy to give the evidence.
Judge: Do call the Duke of Burgundy.
Judge: You are the Duke of Burgundy, the former groom of King Lear's youngest daughter Cordelia. Right?
The Duke of Burgundy: It was so. I planned to marry Cordelia.
Barrister: What made you change your plans and refuse from the wedding?
The Duke of Burgundy: I was forced to do so because of the irascible and foul character of Cordelia's father. And also the fact that he broke his promise.
Barrister: What do you mean?
The Duke of Burgundy: First he promised one third of his kingdom as a dowry. But when I came to the appointment, he confused me with a strange question:
" What, in the least,Will you require in present dower with her,Or cease your quest of love?"
Then he continued even more irately:
"Will you, with those infirmities she owes,Unfriended, new-adopted to our hate,Dower’d with our curse, and stranger’d with our oath,Take her, or leave her?"
I was bewildered at first, but when the gift of speech returned to me, I said:
"Pardon me, royal sir;Election makes not up on such conditions."
I tried to bring him to reason and to change his decision and temper justice with mercy but alas! He infuriated even more.
Barrister: What was Cordelia's fault? What caused such severe rage?
The Duke of Burgundy: I have no answer. May be some home matters...
W. Shakespeare (shouting from his seat): She wasn't guilty at all. All her blame was that she didn't flatter like her sisters and weighed all her sayings.
"It is no vicious blot, murder, or foulness,No unchaste action, or dishonour’d step,That hath deprived her of her father's grace and favour;But even for want of that for which she is richer,A still-soliciting eye, and such a tongueAs she is glad she has not, though not to have itHath lost her in his liking."
Judge: I ask you to keep order in the court-room. Otherwise I'll have to fine you!
W. Shakespeare: Sorry for forced disorder, sir.
Barrister: Now you see, the Honoured Jury, what a tyrant and despot was King Lear. It's obvious that he humiliated and intimidated his daughters. It's not their fault if deep in their hearts woke up the reciprocal inimical feelings.
Judge: Any questions to the Duke of Burgundy?
Barrister: No.
Prosecutor: I have no questions but I solicit the judge to call one more witness for the prosecution - the ex- King Lear’s Jester.
Judge: Ask the Fool to the court-room. Your questions, Mr. Prosecutor.
Prosecutor: Mr. Jester, do you remember the moment when King Lear laid down his power and abdicated in his elder daughters' favour? What terms of the abdication did he make?
Fool: I see that very moment as if it happened just yesterday. I warned him about the danger of such acts but he was a monarch and didn't follow my advice. As for the conditions - they were not numerous but rather concrete: he would live , first, at one daughter's place, then - at the other's. In addition, he stipulated for the personal suite, 100 people in number.
A Student in King Lear's costume:
Ourself, by monthly course,With reservation of an hundred knights,By you to be sustain’d, shall our abodeMake with you by due turns. Only we still retainThe name.
(is giving the crown).
Prosecutor: Mr. Fool, tell the Court at whose palace King Lear took up his residence first? How was getting on there? You must know it for sure as you were constantly beside him.
Fool: First, he settled downed at Goneril's. She was rather displeased with that fact. The life in that home was full of quarrels, the daughter demonstrated no respect or clemency towards the old man. She used to say:
" By day and night he wrongs me; every hourHe flashes into one gross crime or other,That sets us all at odds: I’ll not endure it".
A day later she ordered the servants:
" Put on what weary negligence you please,You and your fellows; I’ll have it come to question:If he dislike it, let him to our sister".
Prosecutor: Am I right to say that Goneril herself provoked the rows in the family, making the life of the King unbearable?
Fool: Just so. She was in the habit of calling him an "Idle old man who cannot be over-ruled" and "Old fool who is a baby again".
Prosecutor: Illustrate the Court by an example what was the last straw that broke the camel's back and forced the King to leave the elder daughter's house. Fool: As I once said:
" For, you trow, nuncle,The hedge-sparrow fed the cuckoo so long,That it’s had it head bit off by it young."
Prosecutor: What do you mean?
Fool: Goneril broke the initial treaty and reduced the King's suite in number. She reproached him:
'I do beseech youTo understand my purposes aright:As you are old and reverend, you should be wise.Here do you keep a hundred knights and squires;Men so disorder’d, so debosh’d and bold,That this our court, infected with their manners,Shows like a riotous inn: epicurism and lustMake it more like a tavern or a brothelThan a graced palace".
Who would like such words? Then Goneril wrote a letter to her sister Regan asking the latter to support her initiative.
Prosecutor: It means that the two sisters were in collusion?
Fool: It's as clear as a day. Regan was aware of the fact that King Lear was heading for her palace. Gonoril asked her not to contradict her requirements towards the father.
Goneril: Your Honour! I would like to make a statement.
Judge: Let us listen to the accused.
Goneril: I really wanted to make my father listen to common sense as he started to behave like a naughty child. I must say he entered his second childhood. It was sometimes hard for me to control him. Due to it he constantly abused and insulted me, called me a sea monster and the black sheep in his family. He used to compare me to a detested kite and said I was marble-hearted.
A Student in King Lear's costume:
"Prepare my horses.Ingratitude, thou marble-hearted fiend,More hideous when thou show’st thee in a childThan the sea-monster!"
Goneril: More than that, he damned me wishing all incredible diseases upon my head and asked Got to strike me with barrenness. What can be more fearful for a woman than infertility?
A Student in King Lear's costume:
"Hear, nature, hear; dear goddess, hear!Suspend thy purpose, if thou didst intendTo make this creature fruitful!Into her womb convey sterility!Dry up in her the organs of increase;And from her derogate body never springA babe to honour her! If she must teem,Create her child of spleen; that it may live,And be a thwart disnatured torment to her!Let it stamp wrinkles in her brow of youth;With cadent tears fret channels in her cheeks;Turn all her mother’s pains and benefitsTo laughter and contempt; that she may feelHow sharper than a serpent’s tooth it isTo have a thankless child! Away, away!"
Goneril: I couldn't't stand it anymore. It all was for my care and hearty attention.
Prosecutor: I suppose he had all grounds to say that...
Barrister: Protest, Respected Court! Mr. Prosecutor is exerting pressure on the Jury by means of his remarks.
Judge: The protest is accepted. Mr. Prosecutor, I ask you to abstain from making such commentary.
Prosecutor: Did you really write a letter to your sister Regan in which you asked her to remain adamant towards King Lear's wishes and requests?
Goneril: I only complained about my unhappy fate and asked her to give refuge to our father up for a week or so till he calmed down.
Prosecutor: The Court has a bit different information. That ill-fated letter is available here. Respected Judge, will you read it aloud?
Judge (reading the letter):
"Sister, it is not a little I have to say of whatmost nearly appertains to us both. I think ourfather will hence to-night".
(To the servant):
"Inform her full of my particular fear;And thereto add such reasons of your ownAs may compact it more. Get you gone;And hasten your return".
Prosecutor: I can't hear any word about care or respect. Mr. Witness (addressing the Fool), what was Regan, the second sister's reaction?
Fool: The King never doubted her mercy and love. He declared about it to Goneril:
A Student in King Lear's costume:
"Yea, it is come to this?Let is be so: yet have I left a daughter,Who, I am sure, is kind and comfortable:When she shall hear this of thee, with her nailsShe’ll flay thy wolvish visage".
Fool: Unfortunately, King was mistaken again. He sent a messenger to inform the second daughter and her husband about his arrival, but they punished the herald, leaving him in the stocks. He was wearing wooden nether-stocks. It was impossible! It was a real outrage. The King couldn't believe his ears.
A Student in King Lear's costume:
"They durst not do ‘t;They could not, would not do ‘t; ’tis worse than murder,To do upon respect such violent outrage:Resolve me, with all modest haste, which wayThou mightst deserve, or they impose, this usage,Coming from us."
Fool: when the King arrived, he found neither Regan nor her husband at home. The servant couldn't explain anything:
"Tis strange that they should so depart from home,And not send back my messenger.
As I learn’d,The night before there was no purpose in themOf this remove".
Judge: Let us listen the story from the horse's mouth. Let's question the second sister, Regan. Tell the Court your version of the story.
Regan: You see, the father came very excited, probably he got tired during the trip. He even didn't put off his coat, when started blackmailing Goneril. He shouted:
" Beloved Regan,Thy sister’s naught: O Regan, she hath tiedSharp-tooth’d unkindness, like a vulture, here:
Points to his heart
I can scarce speak to thee; thou’lt not believeWith how depraved a quality–O Regan!"
Regan: However, I doubted the truthfulness of his words and informed him about it at once:
"I pray you, sir, take patience: I have hope.You less know how to value her desertThan she to scant her duty".
"I cannot think my sister in the leastWould fail her obligation: if, sir, perchanceShe have restrain’d the riots of your followers,‘Tis on such ground, and to such wholesome end,As clears her from all blame".
Regan: I said he was unfair to Goneril and advised him the following:
"O, sir, you are old.Nature in you stands on the very vergeOf her confine: you should be ruled and ledBy some discretion, that discerns your stateBetter than you yourself. Therefore, I pray you,That to our sister you do make return;Say you have wrong’d her, sir.
Good sir, no more; these are unsightly tricks:Return you to my sister".
Fool: I heard with my own ears how King Lear complained about his life at Goneril's place. He lamented for being discriminated:
"She hath abated me of half my train;Look’d black upon me; struck me with her tongue,Most serpent-like, upon the very heart:"
Fool: And each and every word of his was true!
Prosecutor: And what about Regan? Did she comfort her father? Did she console him in his sorrows?
Fool: By no means! She laid down more severe terms. I heard her say:
"I dare avouch it, sir: what, fifty followers?Is it not well? What should you need of more?"
" Why not, my lord? If then they chanced to slack you,We could control them. If you will come to me,–For now I spy a danger,–I entreat youTo bring but five and twenty: to no moreWill I give place or notice".
"What need you five and twenty, ten, or five,To follow in a house where twice so manyHave a command to tend you?"
"This house is little: the old man and his peopleCannot be well bestow’d."
Regan: My house is not spacious enough for all those people. It can't accommodate such a number of people. Do, trust me! But despite all difficulties and misunderstandings, I didn't drive the old man away. I begged him to stay, promising he wouldn't be in need of anything.
Fool: Such deceitful words! Who on earth will believe them? May be you don't know, the castle opposite yours had a video camera on that night! It registered the bitter truth about that tragic night.
Judge: Will you help us to see the tape? (addressing the actuary). All attention to the screen!
Students in costumes of King Lear, Goneril, her husband, Regan, her spouse are acting out the scene of King's leaving the castle.
Let us withdraw; ’twill be a storm.
This house is little: the old man and his peopleCannot be well bestow’d.
‘Tis his own blame; hath put himself from rest,And must needs taste his folly.
For his particular, I’ll receive him gladly,But not one follower.
So am I purposed.Where is my lord of Gloucester?
Follow’d the old man forth: he is return’d.
The king is in high rage.
Whither is he going?
He calls to horse; but will I know not whither.
‘Tis best to give him way; he leads himself.
My lord, entreat him by no means to stay.
Alack, the night comes on, and the bleak windsDo sorely ruffle; for many miles a boutThere’s scarce a bush.
O, sir, to wilful men,The injuries that they themselves procureMust be their schoolmasters. Shut up your doors:He is attended with a desperate train;And what they may incense him to, being aptTo have his ear abused, wisdom bids fear.
Shut up your doors, my lord; ’tis a wild night:My Regan counsels well; come out o’ the storm.
W. Shakespeare (from his seat):
"In such a nightTo shut him out! Pour on; He will endure.In such a night as this! O Regan, Goneril!Your old kind father, whose frank heart gave all,–O, that way madness lies; let him shun that;No more of that".
Had you not been their father, these white flakesHad challenged pity of them. Was this a faceTo be opposed against the warring winds?To stand against the deep dread-bolted thunder?In the most terrible and nimble strokeOf quick, cross lightning? to watch–poor perdu!–With this thin helm? Mine enemy’s dog,Though he had bit me, should have stood that nightAgainst my fire; and wast thou fain, poor father,To hovel thee with swine, and rogues forlorn,In short and musty straw?"
I can't still understand how you could act against your conscience, how you ventured to do so!
Prosecutor: We don't need more convincing evidence of their fault. Their behaviour can be treated as conspiratorial crime of forethought or in a better case as crime of omission. I have no more questions!
Fool: I beg your pardon, Mr. Prosecutor, but that's not all! Not all the proofs of their guilt are exposed to sound. I witnessed everything. King Lear was standing almost naked under the open sky in a severe storm. I was afraid that he would catch a cold. We found a shelter to hide ourselves from the gale, but I must admit King suffered not of cold and nasty weather. He couldn't stand his inner spiritual pain.
A Student in King Lear's costume:
"Thou think’st ’tis much that this contentious stormInvades us to the skin: so ’tis to thee;But where the greater malady is fix’d,The lesser is scarce felt. Thou’ldst shun a bear;But if thy flight lay toward the raging sea,Thou’ldst meet the bear i’ the mouth. When themind’s free,The body’s delicate: the tempest in my mindDoth from my senses take all feeling elseSave what beats there. Filial ingratitude!Is it not as this mouth should tear this handFor lifting food to’t? But I will punish home:No, I will weep no more. In such a nightTo shut me out! Pour on; I will endure.In such a night as this! O Regan, Goneril!Your old kind father, whose frank heart gave all,–O, that way madness lies; let me shun that;No more of that".
"My sickness grows upon me.
Pray you, undo this button: thank you..."
Prosecutor: We all know his sad ending. King nearly got mad. He fainted first, then died from the heart attack as the results of the dissection showed.
Judge: All witnesses have been questioned. The investigation has come to an end. Let start the pleadings.
Prosecutor: Respected Jury! Before you pronounce your verdict, let's summon the results of our investigation.
First, the accused are charged with the inappropriate execution of their filial duties towards their father. The children's duty, who are at age, to carry of their parents is legal regulation is reproduced in Family Code of the Russian Federation (Article 87). In Item 1 of the mentioned Article is said that children must maintain their parents, who need help, and care about them. This care presupposes both moral and financial assistance, it also means support and attention.
Second, the accused are charged with torturing a person (in this case their father), who was in a helpless situation, unable due to his physical and psychological conditions, to protect himself. The accused did it knowing full well that it could had disastrous consequences for him.
Third, analyzing the committed deliberate and foul crime, we may conclude that the accused demonstrated particular severity that was displayed in inflicting the victim both a bodily and a moral harm. The guilt of the accused is also overburdened by the fact that they could clearly understand the grievous position of the victim and they had the wish or conscious allowance (i.e. indifferent attitude) for its occurrence.
Fourthly, the blame is aggravated by the fact that the intended crime, that led to the victim's dearth, is carried out in one of the forms of accompliceship. The crime under consideration is of high social danger as it is based on complicity of a group of people with preliminary agreement and tentative distribution of roles for joint actions aimed at causing personal damage. The accused should be punished in accordance with Article 111 (Part 2, Item "b", Part 3, Item "a") of Criminal Code.
Lastly, taking into consideration, that the actions of the accused led to the old man's death, they are charged with premeditated murder(Article 105, Part 2, Item "d" of the Criminal Code of the Russian Federation).
Summing everything up, I ask the Jury and the Court to find the accused guilty. I have finished.
Judge: Thank you, Mr. Prosecutor. Now, it's your turn, Mr. Barrister.
Barrister: The Respected members of the trial! In my opinion, Mr. Prosecutor, exaggerated the situation. If the defendants are guilty to some extent, it is not treated by the Criminal Law. I am ready to admit that they broke some moral regulations but this question is also disputable. What does Church mean speaking about parents' honouring? This regulation was borrowed from the ten Mosaic Laws and it contains very important things that should be specially highlighted. "Honour your father and your mother to lengthen your days in this world". It can be interpreted as follows: " Honour your parents and you will have a great time on Earth, you will live long and happily". There is definite profit here. This rule contains not a duty to respect parents but it offers a pragmatic approach: if you respect your parents, you'll be OK. Why so? All life examples illustrate just the opposite situation. Are the children happy if they got under parents' pressure and are in state of dependence? All modern experience says that such children are as a rule in distress. They can't arrange their own family life, they are unsuccessful in the field of career, they are often morally ruined and can't realize themselves as a personality.
It goes without saying, children must be grateful to their parents. But respect doesn't deny personal freedom, the right for the man's own opinion, it doesn't disclaim self-dependence.
The Honoured Jury! Listen to my reasonings and you'll realize that I am right: there is no guilt in the mentioned deeds and if there is no guilt, there can't be any punishment. I have said all.
Judge: Thank you, Mr. Barrister. Now, I ask the Jury to go to the special room to render a judgment.
A few minutes later
Judge (addressing to the Jury): Are you ready with the verdict? Pronounce it aloud!
The Jury is presenting the verdict:
Are Regan and Gonoril guilty in their hard-hearted attitude towards their father? Yes, they are.
Are they guilty in provoking their father's death due to their cruel behaviour? Yes, they are.
Are they recommended for any mercy? No, they are not.
Actuary: All rise! The Court is leaving the room for a judgment.
A few minutes later
Actuary: All rise! The sentence is being pronounced!
Judge: Based on the Jury' verdict of "Guilty" , the Court has resolved:
1. To admit the women in the dock guilty in inappropriate fulfillment of their moral duties accompanied by actions, performed with particular severity that led to their father's death.
2. To find the accused guilty in non-respecting their parent and manifesting some boorishness towards him. Loutishness as disrespect of parents sounds rather actual nowadays. A boor is the person who overthrows his parent, ruins him, laughs at him and lives differently, following his own regulations.
3. As these deeds are not treated by the Criminal Law and are not connected with imprisonment, The Court has resolved to free the women in the deck right now in the court-room but order them to carry out some prescriptions: If they have children of their own, they must bring them up in deep respect to their parents. Respect means that children consider their parents higher, more valuable and more important than themselves. Respectful treatment requires that we, by means of each word or deed, express our politeness, obligingness, complaisance, gentleness, moldness, mildness and obedience. These qualities are to be necessarily brought up because through these characteristics a person loses the habit of being self-willed and all-permitted. Obedience is followed by its companions: responsibility, loyalty and humbleness. Children should carry out their parents' will and shouldn't do what they forbid. Children should accept their parent's instructions and advice even if they don't like them. The wisest man teaches: remember kindly your parents and you'll sit among the dignitaries and high officials. I want everyone in the court-room to remember and to adopt these words.
4. Finally, you, Mr. Shakespeare, are asked by the Court to write a play about the ungrateful daughters and about their inappropriate behaviour for the next generations' edification so that such a tragedy will never repeat.

Сведения об авторе
Ф.И.О. Егошина Надежда Гермогеновна
Ученая степень кандидат педагогических наук
Должность преподаватель английского языка, доцент
Организация МБОУ "Гимназия № 14 г. Йошкар-Олы";
ФГБОУ ВПО "Марийский государственный университет", кафедра английской филологии
Домашний адрес 424031, Марий Эл, Йошкар-Ола, Машиностроителей 5 – 67
Домашний телефон (8362) 414162

Приложенные файлы