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Other Useful Resources (not my own)
Volpone Study Guide
Lived between 11 June 1572 ­ 6 August 1637
Popularised the comedy of humours (a genre of dramatic comedy that focuses on a character with overriding traits that dominate their personality)
Writing during the reign of James I and Charles I ­ Jacobean and Caroline eras.
Served as a soldier in the Netherlands
Married Anne Lewis on November 14, 1594.…read more

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It was a development of the Medieval mystery and morality plays where actors personified human characteristics such as virtue, vice, lechery or
curiosity to illustrate moral lessons.
The English Renaissance writers also reworked classical, traditional and contemporary stories.
Jacobean theatre consisted of revenge plays, tragedies and comedies.
Rich courtiers and aristocrats would host productions in their homes and masques were often commissioned for royal celebrations. The masques
were only seen by members of the court and involved music, dance and lavish costumes.…read more

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The subplot
The subplot of Volpone follows the actions of the Politic Wouldbes. Whilst some critics have questioned the addition of the subplot, Peter
Whalley in 1756 even stating that it was "brought in merely to lengthen out the play" it does appear to have some significance to the main plot.
Common in many texts and plays at the time, the subplot seems to provide a parody or contrast with the main plot.…read more

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Oh, thou son of Sol (But brighter than thy father) let me kiss, With adoration, thee, and every relic Of sacred treasure in this blessed
room." At the time of writing religious icons would have been sacred to the audience, so presenting a character who worships to his gold and other
riches would have been shockingly blasphemous.
The treatment of Celia by both Volpone and Corvino could be considered morally wrong.…read more

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Jonson's whole play is based on disguise and deception. The `victims' (Corvino, Corbaccio, Voltore and Lady Politic) attempt to deceive Volpone by
feigning interest and worry in the rich man's health, whilst Volpone in turn does the same to them by pretending to be ill with the promise of greater
wealth from their gifts.
Volpone: " I will go and see her, though but at her window"
Mosca: "In some disguise then"
Volpone: "That is true. I must/Maintain my own shape still the same.…read more

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Joan Littlewood, directed the play in 1955 "the greatest comedy ever written"
Volpone: A Critical Guide "an effective means of teaching its audience to behave better, or a cynical denial that art can make any difference in the
world a feast of theatrical energy and pleasure, or a bitter condemnation of theatre's falsity"
Quotes about comedy and satire
Jonson in The Discoveries The purpose of comedy is "to create laughter to the end that man's lesser faults may be made to appear ridiculous and so…read more



this is really helpful. thanks so much

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