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Recipes for Thought by Wall Wendy

Recipes for Thought by Wall Wendy

Author:Wall, Wendy
Language: eng
Format: epub
ISBN: 9780812291957
Publisher: University of Pennsylvania Press
Published: 2015-11-03T00:00:00+00:00


’Tis the Season

Shakespeare’s early seventeenth-century play All’s Well That Ends Well, begins with two powerful men dead and a king gravely ill. In the opening scene, the Countess of Rossillion introduces her ward Helena by praising Helena’s tears as externalizing virtue and preserving a dead father’s memory: “’Tis the best brine a maiden can season her praise in. The remembrance of her father never approaches her heart but the tyranny of her sorrows takes all livelihood from her cheek,” states the countess (1.1.42–45).1 The Riverside edition’s representative gloss on “season,” as to “preserve, a culinary image,” suggests that Shakespeare introduces Helena through the quaint image of her pickling—or preserving—abstractions, both her father’s memory and her immaterial qualities, which are manifest in and made durable by her briny tears.2 Readers familiar with Shakespeare’s works might think of Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night, which opens with a similar image. Valentine describes the Countess Olivia in mourning:



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