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The silence of Meares , in 1598 , regarding any such play by Shakespeare , is
also important ; had it then written , he could scarcely have failed to mention it ; so
that we have strong negative evidence of its non - existe before the appearance ...
ORIGIN AND HISTORY OF THE PLAY . sor . [ The following observations were
intended as part of poor Dennis , whom he and his contemporary wits of the
Introductory Remarks , prefixed to this play , and have “ damned to everlasting
All these are relieved and contrasted by the grotesque absurdity of the mock play
, and still more by the laughable truth and nature of the amateur “ mechanicals "
who present it . The critics have , indeed , been disposed to limit the praise of ...
Nay , faith , let me not play a woman : I And therefore is love said to be a child ,
have a beard coming . Because in choice he is so oft beguild . Quin . That's all
one . You shall play it in a As waggish boys in game themselves forswear , mask
It is true that the scene in which Ayrer's play is laid , and the names of the
personages , differ from those of The TEMPEST ; but the main incidents of the two
plays are all but identically the same . For instance , in the Ger . inan drama ,
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"like a wood woman" might indeed have meant "frantic" or "wild" (with grief) which Launce mentions referring to the "shoe" which he adopts for the sake of illustration. However, Shakespeare, even at his earliest writings, was vastly entertained by double entendres and his love of puns is so well documented. In that time in Italy, women wore platform shoes which were raised to elevate the shoes from the mud and other unpleasant "stuff". These were called "chopines" and the platforms were constructed of wood. The higher the platform, the higher the pretentiousness of the lady. Her height could have put her above many others. Since Launce has his father and mother represented as shoes, this second meaning is certainly not outside of the possibility for Shakespeare's intention. Naturally, it would have had the effect of a rather "localized" and "temporary" idea, but the fact of its having been very popular in that day makes it a candidate for the Bard's delight.