Title page from Anthony and Cleopatra (facs. 1st Folio 1623)

Part of: Shakespeares Comedies, Histories, and Tragedies (facs. 1st Folio 1623) Anthony and Cleopatra (facs. 1st Folio 1623)

Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra is a famously difficult play to stage. It’s complicated plot and constant shifting of scenes make the action hard to follow. It may now be as well known for the flop starring Elizabeth Taylor, and for the review of a Tallulah Bankhead performance (“She barged down the Nile last night and sank”) as for any of the beauties of Shakespeare’s language. But the beauties are still there, and the play’s meditations on ambition, passion, and betrayal remain compelling.

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This is a facsimile edition of the play from the First Folio edition of 1623.