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The rediscovery of Shakespeare's work in the eighteenth century was a key factor in launching the Romantic movement. At the height of the Shakespeare craze of the early nineteenth century a handful of plays--"Hamlet, Othello, Macbeth, King Lear and "Romeo and Juliet--created the mindset of a generation, affecting every artist, writer, composer and politician in Europe. "Shakespeare in Art tells the remarkable story of how one of many Elizabethan dramatists, for centuries virtually unknown outside England, became a truly European author, inspiring German nationalist thinkers, French dramatists, Italian opera composers, Russian novelists and painters everywhere. "Shakespeare in Art looks especially at the many painters who made Shakespeare's extremes of passion, has evocations of nature, his spirit world and his eternally familiar characters the subjects of their own work. The paintings and drawings range from depictions of famous actors in role by Hogarth and Zoffany; tragic visions by Fuseli and Blake; brooding character studies of Hamlet, the Romantic role model, by Delacroix; to vivid evocations of natural scenery by the Pre-Raphaelites. Also explored is the influence of Shakespeare on eighteenth- and nineteenth-century literature, theatre, music and printmaking. This book is essential reading for anyone interested in the history of Western culture.