Shakespeare Monday – one last time in the bookshop

from „Shakespeare’s Flowers“ (by Kerr and Dowden, Thomas Y Crowell Co, NY; 1969 – private book shelve)
David Levine; NYRB

On Monday, 7 August, at 6 p. m., there will be a last dramatic reading of Shakespeare in the bookshop at Langenscheidtstraße 7.

Since this bookshop opened, the first Monday each month, for one reading hour, had been dedicated to the great bard, and who-ever showed up, took one or several roles in reading aloud. Thus we have reached, in the classical order of plays, „Twelfth Night“ and shall there-in continue with Act III.

Some untangeling of plot, just a couple of glimpses to a wealth of ongoings

Viola, disguised as Cesario, acts under the protection of Orsino, Duke of Illyria, as his courter to Olivia, who fells in love with him/her instead (Olivia, I/5):

Even so quickly may one catch the plague?
Methinks I feel this youth’s perfections
With an invisible and subtle stealth
To creep in at mine eyes. Well, let it be.

Reclam, Penguin / Signet, from private stocks

As always with Shakespeare’s comedies there’s a nice array of funny and peculiar personnage. Scene 5 of Act II had them all gathered, Sir Toby Belch, a jolly kinsman who loves to indulge himself; Fabian, Olivia’s attendant and a minor character in Toby’s plot against Olivias pompous steward Malvolius, together with the ridiculous Sir Andrew Aguecheek and Olivias quick witted lady-in-waiting, Maria. And do they succeed?


Toby (to Maria): Why, thou hast put him in such a dream that when the image of it leaves him, he must run mad.
Maria. Nay, but say true, does it work upon him?
Toby. Like aqua-vite with a midwife.

A peek into a scene ahead (and no more shall be revealed)

»Scene from „Twelfth Night,“ Act III IV. Illustration by  Francis Wheatley, 1771. Fabian (far left) encourages Viola/Cesario (second left) to fight Sir Andrew Aguecheek (second right), encouraged by Sir Toby Belch (far right), because Viola is accused of wooing Olivia, whereas Andrew wishes to woo her instead.« / wikimedia commons

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