The Tragedy of Hamlet
The Tragedy of Hamlet

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Annotation: Contains full explanatory notes opposite edited text of one of the earliest printed editions of Shakespeare's play. Also includes notes on his language, theater, life, a bibliography, and a contemporary essay on the play.
Catalog Number: #130101
Format: Perma-Bound Edition
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Common Core/STEAM: Common Core Common Core
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Copyright Date: 1992
Edition Date: 2012
Pages: lv, 374 pages
Availability: Available
ISBN: Publisher: 0-7434-7712-X Perma-Bound: 0-8479-1782-7
ISBN 13: Publisher: 978-0-7434-7712-3 Perma-Bound: 978-0-8479-1782-2
Dewey: 822.3
LCCN: 93132088
Dimensions: 18 cm.
Language: English
Horn Book
Featuring abridged versions of the Shakespearian texts, with abundant illustrations and frequent, but unobtrusive, descriptions of action and setting, these volumes present six of Shakespeare's best-known tales in an accessible format, while maintaining much of their original impact and style. Each book includes a brief introduction to Shakespeare's life and theater. Based on the cable television series.
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Horn Book
Bibliography Index/Note: Includes bibliographical references (pages 339-369).
Word Count: 32,044
Reading Level: 10.0
Interest Level: 9+
Accelerated Reader: reading level: 10.5 / points: 7.0 / quiz: 10035 / grade: Upper Grades
Reading Counts!: reading level:10.0 / points:20.0 / quiz:Q13329
Lexile: 1390L

Hamlet is Shakespeare’s most popular, and most puzzling, play. It follows the form of a “revenge tragedy,” in which the hero, Hamlet, seeks vengeance against his father’s murderer, his uncle Claudius, now the king of Denmark. Much of its fascination, however, lies in its uncertainties.

Among them: What is the Ghost—Hamlet’s father demanding justice, a tempting demon, an angelic messenger? Does Hamlet go mad, or merely pretend to? Once he is sure that Claudius is a murderer, why does he not act? Was his mother, Gertrude, unfaithful to her husband or complicit in his murder?

The authoritative edition of Hamlet from The Folger Shakespeare Library, the trusted and widely used Shakespeare series for students and general readers, includes:

-Freshly edited text based on the best early printed version of the play
-Newly revised explanatory notes conveniently placed on pages facing the text of the play
-Scene-by-scene plot summaries
-A key to the play’s famous lines and phrases
-An introduction to reading Shakespeare’s language
-An essay by a leading Shakespeare scholar providing a modern perspective on the play
-Fresh images from the Folger Shakespeare Library’s vast holdings of rare books
-An up-to-date annotated guide to further reading

Essay by Michael Neill

The Folger Shakespeare Library in Washington, DC, is home to the world’s largest collection of Shakespeare’s printed works, and a magnet for Shakespeare scholars from around the globe. In addition to exhibitions open to the public throughout the year, the Folger offers a full calendar of performances and programs. For more information, visit

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