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Titus Andronicus

"Sweet mercy is nobility's true badge." Act I, scene ii

Written: 1593

Synopsis: "A story of double revenge. Tamora, Queen of the Goths, seeks revenge on her captor, Titus, for the ritual slaughter of her son Alarbus; she achieves it when her other sons, Chiron and Demetrius, rape and mutilate Titus' daughter, Lavinia. Later, Titus himself seeks revenge on Tamora and her husband, Saturninus, after Tamora's black lover, Aaron, has falsely led him to believe that he can save his sons' lives by allowing his own hand to be chopped off. Though he is driven to madness, Titus, with his brother Marcus and his last surviving son, Lucius, achieves a spectacular sequence of vengeance in which he cuts Tamora's sons' throats, serves their flesh baked in a pie to their mother, kills Lavinia to save her from her shame, and stabs Tamora to death. Then, in rapid succession, Saturninus kills Titus and is himself killed by Lucius, who, as the new Emperor, is left with Marcus to bury the dead, to punish Aaron, and 'To heal Rome's harms and wipe away her woe'." Summary taken from William Shakespeare: The Complete Works, Stanley Wells and Gary Taylor, General Editors

Characters:
• Titus Andronicus, general of Rome
• Tamora, queen of the Goths
• Lavinia, Titus' daughter
• Saturninus, emperor of Rome
• Aaron, Tamora's Moorish lover

Musings:

The Text of the Play: Titus Andronicus

Quotes

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Samuel Woodforde,
Lavinia, Demetrius and Chiron

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