Use of Folktales in the plays of Shakespeare

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Jitendra Kumar Bharti


The present paper aims at to discuss the use of folktales in some notable plays of William Shakespeare. World widely he is well accepted and acknowledge a great dramatist, but this fame of Shakespeare is relied on his use of folklores of various languages and cultures. He became master in using folklores in his plays with new flavour and glamour. As we know that folklores are the foundation of modern literary forms. They are deep rooted in cultures and languages. Folklores have a tradition that they are not available in any written form but they are moulded in order to suit best in new modern literary forms. Shakespeare was the master in doing so. Folklore is a very broader term includes everything about humans and their cultures. For most of his plays, Shakespeare borrowed the material from folklores. But it’s very unfortunate that many scholars of Shakespeare concentrated themselves only on literary forms instead foundation of his plays ignored or paid no attention. So here I am making a small effort to talk about those folklores that supplied rich materials for his plays The Merchant of Venice, King Lear, The Taming of The Shrew, The Comedy of Errors, Titus Andronicus, All’s Well That Ends Well, Cymbeline and The Tempest. Apart from this there are some well-known literary sources as Holinshed’s chronicles, Plutarch’s The Lives of Noble Greeks and Romans and Ovid’s Metamorphosis.


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How to Cite
Jitendra Kumar Bharti. “Use of Folktales in the Plays of Shakespeare”. The Creative Launcher, vol. 4, no. 6, Feb. 2020, pp. 65-70, doi:10.53032/tcl.2020.4.6.11.


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