What needs my Shakespeare for his honour’d Bones, The labour of an age in pilèd Stones, Or that his hallow’d reliques should be hid Under a stary pointing Pyramid? Dear son of Memory, great heir of Fame, What need’st thou such weak witnes of thy name? Thou in our wonder and astonishment Hast built thy self a live-long Monument. For whilst to th’ shame of slow-endeavouring art, Thy easie numbers flow, and that each heart Hath from the leaves of thy unvalu’d Book Those Delphick lines with deep impression took, Then thou our fancy of it self bereaving, Dost make us Marble with too much conceaving; And so Sepulcher’d in such pomp dost lie, That Kings for such a Tomb would wish to die. The poem was originally published as “An Epitaph on the Admirable Dramaticke Poet, W. Shakespeare,”. Though Shakespeare’s death occurred fourteen years before the composition date, Milton concentrates on the immortality of his art rather than on the sadness of his death. Modern authors are still using Shakespeare for inspiration "The Shakespeare Project", will feature a broad spectrum of current authors using his plays as inspiration for new novels. The first in the series is Howard Jacobson's "Shylock is my Name" which is a retelling of the Merchant of Venice from Shylock's point of view. The second book is "Vinegar Girl" by Anne Tyler. Vinegar Girl takes another look at "The Taming of the Shrew." Other upcoming works include Margaret Atwood's reworking of "The Tempest", Jo Nesbo exploring"Macbeth" is as a noir thriller, and Jeannette Winterson creating a new version of "The Winter's Tale".
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