The Alchemist: Book by Ben Jonson

The Alchemist

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ISBN: 9780713671049    Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing PLC Year of publishing: 2004     Format:  Paperback No of Pages: 192        Language: English
Set during a plague epidemic in the Liberty of Blackfriars in 1610 - and first performed on tour in 1610 by the company whose London home at Blackfriars was temporarily closed due to a plague epidemic...Read more
Set during a plague epidemic in the Liberty of Blackfriars in 1610 - and first performed on tour in 1610 by the company whose London home at Blackfriars was temporarily closed due to a plague epidemic - The Alchemist is a sublimely accomplished satirical farce about people's diverse dreams of self-refinement: they all want to transform themselves into something nobler, richer, more powerful, more virile, just as base metal was supposed to be transformed into gold in the alchemical process. During their master's absence from the house, the con-artists Face, Subtle and Doll Common dupe a series of 'customers' whose desire for aggrandisement leads them to believe in the existence of the fabled Philosopher's Stone. As their equipment boils over and blows up in the offstage kitchen, so their plot heats up and is exploded by the sceptical Surly and the arrival of their master - who quietly pockets their proceeds and marries the rich widow to boot.
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About the author: Ben Jonson
The editor, Elizabeth Cook, is the author of the fiction Achilles (Methuen), editor of Dekker and Middleton's The Roaring Girl for the New Mermaids and of the Oxford... Read more
The editor, Elizabeth Cook, is the author of the fiction Achilles (Methuen), editor of Dekker and Middleton's The Roaring Girl for the New Mermaids and of the Oxford Authors' John Keats. She has lectured at the universities of Essex and Leeds and now works freelance.
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