List of illustrations; acknowledgements; Introduction: Shakespeare's fatal Cleopatra; 1. Shakespeare and the Troy legend; 2. Blazoning injustices: mutilating Titus Andronicus, Virgil and Rome; 3. 'Tricks we play on the dead': making history in Troilus and Cressida; 4. To earn a place in the story: resisting the Aeneid in Antony and Cleopatra; 5. Cymbeline's mingle-mangle: Britain's Roman histories; 6. 'How came that widow in?': allusion, politics and the theatre in The Tempest; Notes; Index.
Examines Shakespeare's deployment of Virgil, Ovid and other classical sources in the creation of a national myth.
"A major contribution to understanding Shakespeare's poetic traditions, this volume consistently illuminates the presence of Vergil and Ovid in Shakespeare's language." N. Lukacher, Choice "James's readings of the plays are strong and convincing, and her reevaluation of the iconography of the theater remains a valuable critical enterprise." Rachana Sachdev, Review "...much of what James says in this often provocative book is compelling...James's book is well worth reading..." Comparative Literature "The book makes a significant contribution to Shakespeare studies through foregrounding the myth of Trojan origins and through challenging traditional interpretations of it as a vehicle primarily for praise of the Tudor and Stuart monarchs." Sara Hanna, Clio