Shakespeare Statistics

Maxima der Häufigkeitsverteilung von Replikenlängen (in Worten)
i.e. Repliken dieser Länge wurden am häufigsten verwendet.

Frequency of speech length distributions in words
i.e.This speech length was most often used

in Texten / in texts
file 1599.jpg

The plays were arranged in the alleged sequence as they were written (Shakespeare Handbuch, ed. by Ina Schaber)
Press  the back button of your browser to return to this page.

In 1599 the Globe was opened, and although its dimensions are not supposed to be much different from its immediate predecessors one possible implication is that from 1599 onwards Shakespeare wrote for the Globe in particular. We do not know what in fact caused the shift from something like 9 words to 4 words, but if it's not a larger stage then perhaps a change in the practice of rehearsals certifying the degree of artistic involvement in the production of plays, once Shakespeare had become co-owner of the Globe.

The shift certainly occurs in the wider context of rhetorical speeches and dramatic actions. The suggestion is that rhetoric and declamations receded and were replaced by refined acting using the spatial dimensions of the stage and speeding up events by shorter speeches. This is also part of the growing maturity of Shakespeare. In the face of a general shift towards shorter speeches soliloquies and monologues gained new qualities. Whereas before they had to be seen within the framework of rhetorical devices that kept actors rambling and lamenting they now appeared as functional components of plays, adding to the aesthetic values of varietas and copia - or variety and abundance.
It is obvious that the shift in speech length is also an unbiassed proof that Shakespeare is the real author of his plays. This does not exclude collaborations with other authors, but the artistic involvement is so clearly marked by the opening of the Globe in 1599 that only Shakespeare's biographical dates match the statistical data of his works.
Zurück zur Homepage