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The Tempest, thought to be one of the last plays that Shakespeare wrote alone, begins with a storm which shipwrecks the king of Naples and his crew. We quickly learn that the tempest was not a natural occurence; it was created by Prospero, the usurped duke of Milan who is stranded on a nearby island, with the help of Ariel, a spirit in his service. The rest of the play explores the relationships between the shipwrecked crew, Prospero, his daughter Miranda, and a native of the island: a half human, half monster called Caliban.
Though this play is traditionally classified as a comedy, more modern scholarship, out of a desire to highlight the dramatic elements of some of Shakespeare’s comedies, created a genre subgroup called the “late romances.” The Tempest is included in that subgroup.
This Standard Ebooks production is based on William George Clark and William Aldis Wright’s 1887 Victoria edition, which is taken from the Globe edition.
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