Please enter verification code
Witches before Flying
International Journal of Literature and Arts
Volume 2, Issue 5, September 2014, Pages: 155-172
Received: Aug. 18, 2014; Accepted: Sep. 6, 2014; Published: Sep. 20, 2014
Views 3043      Downloads 124
Shokhan Rasool Ahmed, English Department, University of Sulaimani, Sulaimani/Kurdistan- Iraq
Article Tools
Follow on us
This paper examines Shakespeare’s Macbeth (1606), and The Late Lancashire Witches (1634) by Thomas Heywood and Richard Brome, and considers in detail the witch scenes in both plays and their stage directions during their entrances and exits. The witches in the Jacobean Macbeth of the First Folio, do not explicitly fly in the stage directions. However, they do in the Restoration Macbeth, namely in Davenant’s second Quarto (1674). The question to be raised here is: what evidence is there in the pre-Restoration Macbeth that the witches flew? In order to explore this, we must consider what performance spaces were used for Macbeth in the Jacobean period. Shakespeare’s Macbeth, and Heywood and Brome’s The Late Lancashire Witches form an interesting comparison since they were both revised by other writers. The Late Lancashire Witches has not received as much scholarly attention as the other witch plays discussed here. Therefore, as a comparative study, this paper will also discuss the joint authorship of Heywood and Brome in The Late Lancashire Witches and the stage directions of the witch scenes. Although it seems that the witches did not fly in Heywood’s and Brome’s version, there is evidence that the stage directions called for flight in The Lancashire Witches (1681), Thomas Shadwell’s later version. A further illuminating comparison between these plays is that the creatures we are considering here are sinister figures in Macbeth but comic figures in The Lancashire Witches. The audience can see that the three Weird Sisters enter the stage and then vanish into the air, but do not see them fly.
Stage Directions in the Jacobean Macbeth, Stage Directions in the Restoration Macbeth, Stage Directions in Thomas Shadwell’s The Lancashire Witches, Tegue O Divelly the Irish-Priest, and Pepys’ Response to Macbeth The Late Lancashire Witches
To cite this article
Shokhan Rasool Ahmed, Witches before Flying, International Journal of Literature and Arts. Vol. 2, No. 5, 2014, pp. 155-172. doi: 10.11648/j.ijla.20140205.14
Albright, Daniel, ‘The Witches and The Witch: Verdi’s Macbeth’, Cambridge Opera Journal, 17 (2005), 225-252
Andrews, C. E., ‘The Authorship of Lancashire Witches’, Modern Language, 28 (1913), 163-166.
Beckerman, Bernard, Shakespeare at the Globe, 1599-1609 (New York: Macmillan, 1962)
Borgman, Albert S., Thomas Shadwell: His Life and Comedies (New York: Benjamin Bolm, INC, 1969)
Campbell, Lily Bess, Scenes and Machines on the English Stage during the Renaissance: A Classical Revival (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1923)
Clair, William St, The Reading Nation in the Romantic Period (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2004)
Clark, Arthur Melville, Thomas Heywood: Playwright and Miscellanist (Oxford: Basil Blackwell, 1931)
Clark, Sandra, Shakespeare Made Fit: Restoration Adaptations of Shakespeare (London: Everyman, 1997)
Cromwell, Otelia, Thomas Heywood: A Study in The Elizabethan Drama of Everyday Life ([Hamden, Conn.]: Archon Books, 1969 [c 1928])
Dahl, Marcus, ‘A New Shakespeare Collaboration? All’s Not Well in the data’, University of London: School of Advanced Study, 1-23. < us/news/middleton-and-shakespeare> [accessed 10 July 2012.]
Dahl, Marcus, Tarlinskaya Marina, and Vickers Brian, ‘An Enquiry into Middleton’s Supposed “Adaptation” of Macbeth’, University of London: School of Advanced Study, 1-37. [accessed 10 July 2012]
Downes, John, Roscius Anglicanus, ed. by Judith Milhous and Robert D. Hume (London: The Society for Theatre Research, 1987)
Fiske, Roger, ‘The “Macbeth” Music’, Music & Letters, 45 (1964), 114-125
Fraser, Russell, review of ‘Conceptions of Shakespeare’ ed. by Alfred Harbage; ‘Shakespeare’s Occasional Plays: Their Origin and Transmission’ ed. by J. M. Nosworthy. Renaissance Quarterly, 20 (1967), 57-61
Genest, John, Some Accounts of the English Stage from the Restoration in 1660-1830, 10 vols (London: HE.E. Carrington, 1832)
Harris, Anthony, Night’s Black Agents: Witchcraft and Magic in Seventeenth-century English Drama (Manchester: Manchester University Press, 1980)
Heywood, Thomas, The Dramatic Works of Thomas Heywood, 6 vols (New York: Russell & Russell. INC, 1964), iv, 165- 260 (p. 167)
Heywood, Thomas and Richard Broome, The Late Lancashire Witches (London, 1634)
Thomas Heywood and Richard Brome: The late Lancashire VVitches. A well received Comedy, lately Acted at the Globe on the Bank-side, by the Kings Majesties Actors (London, 1634)
The Late Lancashire Witches, ed. by Laird H. Barber (New York and London: Garland, 1979)
The Witches of Lancashire, ed. by Gabriel Egan (London: Nick Hern, 2002)
Jowett, John, Shakespeare and Text (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2007)
‘From Many of Your Companies: Middleton’s Early Readers’, in A Companion to the Collected Works: Thomas Middleton and Early Modern Textual Culture, ed. by Gary Taylor and John Lavagnino (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2007), pp. 286-327
King, T. J., ‘Shakespearean Staging, 1599-1642’, in The Elizabethan Theatre, ed. by David Galloway, 3 vols (Don Mills: The Macmillan Company of Canada Limited, 1973), pp. 1-13
Kristian Smidt, review of ‘Shakespeare’s Occasional plays: Their Origin and Transmission’, ed. by J. M. Nosworthy, Shakespeare Quarterly, 18 (1967), 190-191
Lancashire, Ann, ‘The Witch: Stage Flop or Political Mistake’ in Accompaninge the Players: Essays Celebrating Thomas Middleton, 1580-1980, ed. by Kenneth Friedenreich (New York: AMS Press, 1983), pp. 161-181
Marsden, Jean I., ‘Spectacle, horror, and Pathos’, in The Cambridge Companion to English Restoration Theatre, ed. by Deborah Payne Fisk (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2000), pp. 174-190
Martin, Robert Grant, ‘Is “The Late Lancashire Witches” a Revision?’, Modern Philology, 13 (1915), 253-265
Middleton, Thomas, Thomas Middleton and Early Modern Textual Culture: A Companion to the Collected Works, ed. by Gary Taylor and John Lavagnino (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 2007)
Nosworthy, J. M., Shakespeare’s Occasional Plays: Their Origin and Transmission (London: Edward Arnold, 1965)
Notestein, Wallace, History of Witchcraft in England from 1558 to 1718 (Washington: The American Historical Association, 1911)
Robbins, Rossell Hope, review of ‘Pale Hecate’s Team’ ed. Katherine M. Briggs’, Renaissance News, 16 (1963), 28-30
Schanzer Ernest, review of ‘Shakespeare’s Occasional plays: Their Origin and Transmission’, ed. by J. M. Nosworthy. Review of English Literature, 18 (1967), 62-64
Scholes, Percy A., ‘The Purpose behind Shakespeare’s Use of Music’, Proceedings of the Musical Association, 43rd Sess. (1916-1917), 1-15
Shadwell, Thomas, The Lancashire-Witches, And Tegue O Divelly The Irish-Priest: A Comedy Acted at the Duke's Theater (London, 1682)
The Complete Work of Thomas Shadwell, ed. by Montague Summers, 4 vols ( London: The Fortune Press, 1927)
Shakespeare, William, William Shakespeare: Comedies, Histories and Tragedies, (London: 1623)
The Norton Facsimile: The First Folio of Shakespeare, ed. by Charlton Hinman (London, New York, Sydney and Toronto: Paul Hamlyn, 1968)
Macbeth: A Tragedy, ed. by William Davenant (London, 1673)
Macbeth, A Tragedy: with all Alterations, Amendments, Additions, and New Song, ed. by William Davenant (London, 1674)
William Shakespeare: The Complete Works, ed. by Gary Taylor, and Stanley Wells, 2nd ed. (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1986)
The Complete Oxford Shakespeare: Tragedies, ed. by Stanley Wells and Gary Taylor (London: Guild Publishing, 1987)
William Shakespeare: The Complete Works: Original-Spelling Edition, ed. by Stanley Wells and Gary Taylor (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1986)
William Shakespeare: Bells’ Edition of Shakespeare’s Plays, ed. by John Bell, 8 vols (London: Corn market Press, 1969)
The dramatic writings of Will. Shakspere, with the notes of all the various commentators; Eighteenth Century Collections Online, [accessed 16 May 2012]
William Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by Jonathan Bate and Eric Rasmussen (London: The Royal Shakespeare Company, 2009)
William Shakespeare: Ten Great Plays, ed. by Tyrone Guthrie (London: Paul Hamlyn, 1962)
The Tragedy of Macbeth, ed. G. B. Harrison (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1937)
Sixteen Plays of Shakespeare: with Full Explanatory Notes, Textual Notes, and Glossaries, ed. by George Lyman Kittredge (Boston: Ginn and Company, 1946)
The New Cambridge Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by A. R. Braunmuller (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997)
The Annotated Shakespeare: Complete Works Illustrated, ed. by A. L. Rowse (London: Orbis Books, 1978)
The Arden Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by Kenneth Muir (London: Methuen, 1951)
The Complete Works of Shakespeare: including a bibliography and general Introduction, Glossary and Index of Characters, ed. by Charles Jasper Sisson (London: Odhams, 1953)
Complete Works of William Shakespeare, ed. by Dorothy McMillan (Glasgow: HarperCollins, 1994)
Macbeth, ed. by Charles Kean (London: Corn Market Press, 1970)
The Works of William Shakespeare: gathered into one volume (Oxford: Shakespeare Head Press, 1934)
The Works of Shakespeare, ed. by Howard Staunton, 3 vols (London: Warne & Routledge, 1864)
The Works of William Shakespeare, ed. by Henry Irving and Frank A. Marshall (London: Blackie & Son, 1890)
The Riverside Shakespeare, ed. by G. B. Blakemore Evan (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1974)
William Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by M. R. Ridley (London: J. M. Dent & Sons Ltd., 1935)
William Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. G. K. Hunter (Harmondsworth: Penguin, 1967)
The BBC TV Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by Peter Alexander (London: British Broadcasting Corporation, 1983)
The Complete Works of Shakespeare (London: Strand, 1864)
A New Variorum edition of Shakespeare: Macbeth, ed. by Horace Howard Furness (Philadelphia: J. B. Lippincott & Co., 1873)
Smidt, Kristian, review of ‘Shakespeare’s Occasional plays: Their Origin and Transmission’, ed. by J. M. Nosworthy, Shakespeare Quarterly, 18 (1967), 190-191
Smith, Irwin, Shakespeare’s Blackfriars Playhouse: Its History and Its Design (London: Peter Owen, 1964)
Spencer, Christopher, Five Restoration Adaptations of Shakespeare (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1965)
Spencer, Hazelton, ‘D’Avenant’s Macbeth and Shakespeare’s’. PMLA, 40 (1925), 619-644
Spielmann, Marion Harry, Studies in the First Folio: Written for the Shakespearean Association, in Celebration of the First Folio Tercentenary (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1923)
Stern, Tiffany, Making Shakespeare: From Stage to Page (London and New York: Routledge, 2004)
Documents of Performance in Early Modern England (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2009)
Summers, Montague, A History of Witchcraft and Demonology (London: Kegan Paul, Trench, Trubner, 1926)
Taylor, Gary and John Jowett, Shakespeare Reshaped 1606-1623 (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1993)
Vickers, Brian and Dahl, Marcus, ‘All’s Well that Ends Well: an attribution refuted’, University of London: School of Advanced Study, 1-9. [accessed 10 July 2012]
Wickham, Glynne, ‘To Fly Not To Fly? The Problem of Hecate in Shakespeare’s “Macbeth”’ in Essays on Drama and Theatre, ed. by Benjamin Hunningher (Amsterdam: Baarn, 1973), pp. 17-82
‘Amusement’, Oxford English Dictionary. [Accessed May 2014]
Science Publishing Group
1 Rockefeller Plaza,
10th and 11th Floors,
New York, NY 10020
Tel: (001)347-983-5186