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The Dutch Courtezan: 'I just know that there are two theories when arguing with women. And neither one works''

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John Marston was born to John and Maria Marston née Guarsi, and baptised on October 7th, 1576 at Wardington, Oxfordshire.Marston entered Brasenose College, Oxford in 1592 and earned his BA in 1594. By 1595, he was in London, living in the Middle Temple. His interests were in poetry and play writing, although his father's will of 1599 hopes that he would not further pursue John Marston was born to John and Maria Marston née Guarsi, and baptised on October 7th, 1576 at Wardington, Oxfordshire.Marston entered Brasenose College, Oxford in 1592 and earned his BA in 1594. By 1595, he was in London, living in the Middle Temple. His interests were in poetry and play writing, although his father's will of 1599 hopes that he would not further pursue such vanities.His brief career in literature began with the fashionable genres of erotic epyllion and satire; erotic plays for boy actors to be performed before educated young men and members of the inns of court.In 1598, he published ‘The Metamorphosis of Pigmalion's Image and Certaine Satyres’, a book of poetry. He also published ‘The Scourge of Villanie’, in 1598. ‘Histriomastix’ regarded as his first play was produced 1599. It’s performance kicked off an episode in literary history known as the War of the Theatres; a literary feud between Marston, Jonson and Dekker that lasted until 1602.However, the playwrights were later reconciled; Marston wrote a prefatory poem for Jonson's ‘Sejanus’ in 1605 and dedicated ‘The Malcontent’ to him. Beyond this episode Marston's career continued to gather both strength, assets and followers. In 1603, he became a shareholder in the Children of Blackfriars company. He wrote and produced two plays with the company. The first was ‘The Malcontent’ in 1603, his most famous play. His second was ‘The Dutch Courtesan’, a satire on lust and hypocrisy, in 1604-5.In 1605, he worked with George Chapman and Ben Jonson on ‘Eastward Ho’, a satire of popular taste and the vain imaginings of wealth to be found in the colony of Virginia.Marston took the theatre world by surprise when he gave up writing plays in 1609 at the age of thirty-three. He sold his shares in the company of Blackfriars. His departure from the literary scene may have been because of further offence he gave to the king. The king suspended performances at Blackfriars and had Marston imprisoned.On 24th September 1609 he was made a deacon and them a priest on 24th December 1609. In October 1616, Marston was assigned the living of Christchurch, Hampshire.He died (accounts vary) on either the 24th or 25th June 1634 in London and was buried in the Middle Temple Church.


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John Marston was born to John and Maria Marston née Guarsi, and baptised on October 7th, 1576 at Wardington, Oxfordshire.Marston entered Brasenose College, Oxford in 1592 and earned his BA in 1594. By 1595, he was in London, living in the Middle Temple. His interests were in poetry and play writing, although his father's will of 1599 hopes that he would not further pursue John Marston was born to John and Maria Marston née Guarsi, and baptised on October 7th, 1576 at Wardington, Oxfordshire.Marston entered Brasenose College, Oxford in 1592 and earned his BA in 1594. By 1595, he was in London, living in the Middle Temple. His interests were in poetry and play writing, although his father's will of 1599 hopes that he would not further pursue such vanities.His brief career in literature began with the fashionable genres of erotic epyllion and satire; erotic plays for boy actors to be performed before educated young men and members of the inns of court.In 1598, he published ‘The Metamorphosis of Pigmalion's Image and Certaine Satyres’, a book of poetry. He also published ‘The Scourge of Villanie’, in 1598. ‘Histriomastix’ regarded as his first play was produced 1599. It’s performance kicked off an episode in literary history known as the War of the Theatres; a literary feud between Marston, Jonson and Dekker that lasted until 1602.However, the playwrights were later reconciled; Marston wrote a prefatory poem for Jonson's ‘Sejanus’ in 1605 and dedicated ‘The Malcontent’ to him. Beyond this episode Marston's career continued to gather both strength, assets and followers. In 1603, he became a shareholder in the Children of Blackfriars company. He wrote and produced two plays with the company. The first was ‘The Malcontent’ in 1603, his most famous play. His second was ‘The Dutch Courtesan’, a satire on lust and hypocrisy, in 1604-5.In 1605, he worked with George Chapman and Ben Jonson on ‘Eastward Ho’, a satire of popular taste and the vain imaginings of wealth to be found in the colony of Virginia.Marston took the theatre world by surprise when he gave up writing plays in 1609 at the age of thirty-three. He sold his shares in the company of Blackfriars. His departure from the literary scene may have been because of further offence he gave to the king. The king suspended performances at Blackfriars and had Marston imprisoned.On 24th September 1609 he was made a deacon and them a priest on 24th December 1609. In October 1616, Marston was assigned the living of Christchurch, Hampshire.He died (accounts vary) on either the 24th or 25th June 1634 in London and was buried in the Middle Temple Church.

30 review for The Dutch Courtezan: 'I just know that there are two theories when arguing with women. And neither one works''

  1. 5 out of 5

    Shaun

    Wondrous fun! Something of a mix between Much Ado About Nothing and , John Marston's city comedy is a lovely piece of early modern drama. The plot weaves between a few romantic entanglements, mainly that of (Young) Freevill, son a knight and general gadabout. There is also a subplot that ends up being a dig against Catholics (standard fare for a Protestant dramatist like Marston). Overall, the play is a hoot. Marston may lack some of the depth that you get with Shakespeare's plays, but he leaves Wondrous fun! Something of a mix between Much Ado About Nothing and , John Marston's city comedy is a lovely piece of early modern drama. The plot weaves between a few romantic entanglements, mainly that of (Young) Freevill, son a knight and general gadabout. There is also a subplot that ends up being a dig against Catholics (standard fare for a Protestant dramatist like Marston). Overall, the play is a hoot. Marston may lack some of the depth that you get with Shakespeare's plays, but he leaves out none of the mirth. Freevill sets in motion a romantic ruse in order to get comeuppance on the Puritanical Malheureaux. Malheureaux becomes almost instantly enamored with the Dutch prostitute Francischina, who is herself in love with Freevill, who is betrothed to Beatrice. Hijinx ensue, and a man named Mulligrub gets robbed blind several times by the mirthful and devious Cocledemoy. My major reservations about the play come from its often harsh tone against women, particularly Francischina. There are moments when Freevill speaks openly of the vileness of women, even as their bodies are a source of delight. Standard fare for its time, but still something to reflect on more seriously. The play does give some agency to its female characters - particularly the witty Crispinella, so there is that to look forward to. Overall, I really enjoyed the play. Plays like these really need to engage conversations, because they can lose you in the mirth. I would recommend to anyone who is a fan of Shakespeare's comedies or anyone interested in English drama outside of Shakespeare.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Jordan St. Stier

    A humorous and bawdy play, filled with enough thievery and whoring for a Pre-Code movie. Somewhat predictable in the plotline, the play, featuring clever satire, witty verse, and the 17th Century equivalent of a Dutch accent is ripe (and/or rife) with misadventures and malchance , and is a rather satisfyingly light read compared to contemporary tragedies and verbose polemics. In the words of Cockledemoy, Hang Toasts!

  3. 4 out of 5

    Gill

    Some pretty unsavoury characters; the worse get their come-uppance, though the title character is perhaps not wholly deserving her fate. Lots of highly entertaining scenes, some of which were popularlyrevived well into the Restoration period. Read as part of the Shakespeare Institute 2019 readathon, #Websterthon

  4. 5 out of 5

    Shannon Jones

    Not bad but a bit of a weird one, even for the Renaissance. Foreign prostitute gets her comeuppance for . . . being foreign? Erm . . . hold that thought

  5. 4 out of 5

    Moon

    "I may cack in my pewter" is such a wonderful phrase it is a shame t'is not more versatile. "I may cack in my pewter" is such a wonderful phrase it is a shame t'is not more versatile.

  6. 4 out of 5

    Ingrid

    Great play showing 3 models of marriage and coming down in favor of the newer model with the more outspoken woman; might be good to teach together with Shakespeare's "Shrew." Great play showing 3 models of marriage and coming down in favor of the newer model with the more outspoken woman; might be good to teach together with Shakespeare's "Shrew."

  7. 5 out of 5

    Alan

    1988 notebook: plain speaking – Crispinella’s opinion of men. The man of snow. The low life of London. The constant flow of obscenity: farts, whores and buttocks. Knavery, wit, gulling, beer, wines, brothels and disease. Marston revels in it.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Casey

    This play is nearly an adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing, with huge chunks that deliberately steal from it. Its version of the "Kill Claudio" moment is hilarious. This play is nearly an adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing, with huge chunks that deliberately steal from it. Its version of the "Kill Claudio" moment is hilarious.

  9. 5 out of 5

    Sally

  10. 4 out of 5

    Arpita Kayal

  11. 5 out of 5

    Shaun

  12. 5 out of 5

    Kin Cosner

  13. 4 out of 5

    Nicholas Jackson

  14. 5 out of 5

    Jem Bloomfield

  15. 5 out of 5

    landon

  16. 5 out of 5

    John Skaife

  17. 4 out of 5

    Julia

  18. 5 out of 5

    Lauren

  19. 4 out of 5

    Lauren Short

  20. 4 out of 5

    Mark Woodland

  21. 4 out of 5

    Amanda Geduld

  22. 4 out of 5

    Sadie

  23. 4 out of 5

    Sam

  24. 4 out of 5

    Maria Carrig

  25. 4 out of 5

    Noor Ferdous

  26. 4 out of 5

    Tabetha

  27. 5 out of 5

    Benjamin

  28. 5 out of 5

    Andy

  29. 4 out of 5

    Karol

  30. 5 out of 5

    Miki

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