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The Tragedy of Tragedies or the Life and Death of Tom Thumb the Great

3.24  ·  Rating Details ·  59 Ratings  ·  6 Reviews
This scarce antiquarian book is a selection from Kessinger Publishings Legacy Reprint Series. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment to protecting, preserving, and promoting the worlds literature. Kessinger P ...more
Paperback, 48 pages
Published June 17th 2004 by Kessinger Publishing (first published March 24th 1731)
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Tom Thumb satirizes the tropes of Arthurian legends and Jacobian dramas. Especially the last scene is a testament to this, which isn't exactly as bloody as Middleton's Women Beware Women and Other Plays, but it gets the point across. Absurdly gory, sloppily sentimental, fairy-talier than fairy-tales.
(Read because of the entry "Queen Dollalolla, the slatterpiece" in Darconville’s Cat's The Unholy Litany.)
Julian Munds
I cannot say this play has aged well. The poetry hampers the progression of plot. There are moments of magic but it falls flat on the modern ear. I could see a colourful oddity in its performance. It's one of those plays that should stay in the past. There's a neat moment where Merlin conjures a future theatre to tell Tom Thumb about the audiences that will flock to see his story. The best Tragedy ever written as Scriblerus says in his libelrous subscript. That's a gross overstatement.
I understand, and to an extent, appreciate Fielding's satirizing of textual analysis and literary criticism, but I didn't really find the joke to be funny. The play itself is okay, though in general it feels like a pale imitation of other tragedies, and the choice of Tom Thumb as the protagonist is a bit strange, especially given Fielding's poor handling of the associated Arthurian elements. Generally speaking, I don't think there's much to recommend here, and I certainly wouldn't have read it i ...more
Oct 17, 2015 Ellen rated it it was ok
So shit it's great.
Jan 20, 2012 Stephanie rated it liked it
Shelves: academic
Really funny play, although many of the jokes are contextual and really could only be truly understood by someone living in the time period it was initially written. However, many of the jokes could still be good, and it was well worth the read.
Ann Canann
Apr 12, 2011 Ann Canann rated it it was ok
Shelves: plays
Written in 1731 by the hilarious Henry Fielding
It was said in its day "No one could write so fine a piece but Mr.Pope, but also, "No one could write anything so bad, but Mr. Fielding. I don't love it the way I love his "Tom Jones."
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Henry Fielding was born in Somerset in 1707. The son of an army lieutenant and a judge's daughter, he was educated at Eton School and the University of Leiden before returning to England where he wrote a series of farces, operas and light comedies.

Fielding formed his own company and was running the Little Theatre, Haymarket, when one of his satirical plays began to upset the government. The passin
More about Henry Fielding...

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