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The Poems: Venus and Adonis, the Rape of Lucrece, the Phoenix and the Turtle, the Passionate Pilgrim, a Lover's Complaint
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The Poems: Venus and Adonis, the Rape of Lucrece, the Phoenix and the Turtle, the Passionate Pilgrim, a Lover's Complaint

4.23  ·  Rating Details ·  345 Ratings  ·  20 Reviews
This is a fully annotated edition of all the poems which are now generally regarded as Shakespeare's, excluding the Sonnets. It contains Venus and Adonis, The Rape of Lucrece, The Phoenix and the Turtle, The Passionate Pilgrim, and A Lover's Complaint. The introduction to the two long narrative poems examines their place within the classical and Renaissance European tradit ...more
Hardcover, 326 pages
Published May 1st 2006 by Cambridge University Press (first published January 1st 1958)
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Aug 09, 2012 Phil rated it really liked it
The two long narrative poems, Venus & Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece, form part of my reading of Shakespeare's works in (estimated) chronological order of writing.

In 1592, plague (and possibly political machinations using plague as a convenient excuse to subdue free speech) led to the closure of London's theatres for almost two years. At the time, this was terrible news for Shakespeare who, with his Henry VI trilogy and Richard III had just had a series of great successes and must have been
Apr 13, 2012 Jason rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Venus & Adonis

Stunningly beautiful, lusciously sumptuous. Bees buzz for delicious wildflowers, golden strands of honey spun like Venus' silken hair. A thoroughbred stallion paws at the dirt, muscles rippling from shoulder to back, a character so rich as to rival the God and Goddess. The contrast of light and shadow on Adonis' face is evocative of the small moments that pass in a day, of the tragedy that his simple hubris, youths' indifference to time, will bring. That tragedy is transformed
Mar 13, 2008 Laura rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read Venus and Adonis last night, and it's now my absolute favorite Poem. It's simply Brilliant. Even though I've been a fan of Shakspeares for about ever, he really out did himself on this one. It was just so freaking INTENSE!
May 01, 2016 Antonella rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Siempre es un placer leer a Shakespeare sobre todo en su idioma original.
The diversity of poems in this collection, some of them rather more alien to the modern reader than Shakespeare's plays or sonnets, makes rating this book difficult. The Passionate Pilgrim is a very uneven miscellany, only some of the contents of which are by Shakespeare. The metaphysical allegory of The Phoenix and the Turtle is intriguing, but difficult to penetrate, as is the narrative of A Lover's Complaint; the editor's suggestion that this poem may be unfinished seems very plausible. John ...more
Aug 27, 2013 Lydia rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
To be more definative, this is not a bad selection of poems, but the material is rather harsh, especially for being about love, as two of the poems Venus and Adonis and The Rape of Lucrece deal with passion that is not love though often given that title. This is something that I have always liked about Shakespeare's writting, though he deals with the unsavory side of humanity, when he is writting about lust and passion he doesn't claim it is real love. He shows it for what it is, selfishness. In ...more
Jul 30, 2014 Jess rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This delightful little book was purchased at the Shakespeare & co. bookshop!
Anyway, this is by a group called "Everyman's Library Pocket poets" (they do other title books such as Blake, Byron, Coleridge, Rossetti etc!). It contains most of Shakespeare's sonnets, extracts from longer poems, songs from the plays and soliloquies from plays also.
This is such a cute little book to own, with it's own gold ribbon bookmark to complete its look. The content is easy to read and very enjoyable if you
Apr 10, 2010 Dayna rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Many of the sonnets are worthy of a 5, and some get a 2. Hard to rate this one. I wasn't crazy about the long poems, "Venus and Adonis," and "The Rape of Lucrece," although Tarquinus trying to reason himself out of raping Lucrece is pretty fascinating: "What win I, if I gain the thing I seek?/ A dream, a breath, a froth of fleeting joy./ Who buys a minute's mirth to wail a week?/ Or sells eternity to get a toy?" Beautiful.
To read as part of "The Oxford Shakespeare, Histories"

Works to be reviewed: A Song, Verses upon the Stanley Tomb at Tong, Written upon the west end thereof, On Ben Jonson, An Epitaph on Elias James, An extemporary epitaph on John Combe, a noted usurer, Another Epitaph on John Combe, Upon the King, Epitaph on Himself
Aug 08, 2010 Niky marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: in-my-possession
Read 'The Phoenix and the Turtle' on 8-08-2010
I can say that it's about a phoenix and a turtle dove and about love. I'm not so good in interpret poems; I find it hard enough in Dutch so English is obviously even harder for me. So I don't know my opion about this poems. I'll probably re-read it.
Andrew Wright
Mar 29, 2013 Andrew Wright rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned
He's the only writer I fear.
I must admit I didn't read all of these. Just Rape of Lucrece for class. Interesting though. Amazingly, I've never read any of Bill's longer poems before.
Rachel (Sfogs)
Jul 02, 2011 Rachel (Sfogs) rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Good poems!
Amara Thornton
Aug 19, 2007 Amara Thornton rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
some of shakespeare's non-sonnet poems. excellent.
Clouphas Lebotse
this books are interesting please help me to open for reading at the moment I can't open and read
I can't review my favorite piece of literature of all time, so there.
Stephanie Fournier
A refreshing change from Shakespeare's plays. Beautiful prose in the form of poetry.
John W.
Apr 27, 2016 John W. rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Venus and Adonis and the Rape of Lucrece give a very different picture of Shakespeare than his plays. In many ways more traditional than his plays but works that should not be overlooked.
didn't read this book specifically, but read most of his poetry and sonnets... i like his works alot.
Inas Essa
Inas Essa rated it really liked it
Apr 06, 2014
Katie Ridgway
Katie Ridgway rated it really liked it
Jul 09, 2015
Joanna Ravlin
Joanna Ravlin rated it it was amazing
Jan 03, 2011
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Jun 03, 2014
J rated it it was amazing
Jun 23, 2017
Jefferson Holbrook
Jefferson Holbrook rated it really liked it
Feb 28, 2012
Michelle Renee
Michelle Renee rated it it was amazing
Apr 25, 2015
Mehrdad Kermani
Mehrdad Kermani rated it it was amazing
Jul 19, 2012
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Dina El3arousy rated it liked it
Dec 03, 2011
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Jan 30, 2009
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May 24, 2008
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William Shakespeare (baptised 26 April 1564) was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world's pre-eminent dramatist. He is often called England's national poet and the "Bard of Avon" (or simply "The Bard"). His surviving works consist of 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. His plays have been tr ...more
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