Summary of the plot or story
Shakespeare's blood thirsty drama of Titus Andronicus is a sordid tale of revenge and political turmoil, overflowing with bloodshed and unthinkable brutality including countless murders, rape, terrible acts of mutilation and threats of human sacrifice. The characters in Titus Andronicus are the Romans and the important captives brought to Roman following the ten year war with the Goths including the Queen of the Goths, Tamora, and members of her family.
Information provided about the play
William Shakespeare never published any of his plays and therefore none of the original manuscripts have survived. Eighteen unauthorised versions of his plays were, however, published during his lifetime in quarto editions by unscrupulous publishers (there were no copyright laws protecting Shakespeare and his works during the Elizabethan era). A collection of his works did not appear until 1623 (a full seven years after Shakespeare's death on April 23, 1616) when two of his fellow actors, John Hemminges and Henry Condell, posthumously recorded his work and published 36 of Williamís plays in the First Folio. Some dates are therefore approximate other dates are substantiated by historical events, records of performances and the dates plays appeared in print.
Date first performed
It is believed that Titus Andronicus was first performed January 24 1594. In the Elizabethan era there was a huge demand for new entertainment and Titus Andronicus would have been produced immediately following the completion of the play.
Date first printed
It is believed that Titus Andronicus was first printed in 1594. As William Shakespeare clearly did not want his work published details of the play would have therefore been noted, and often pirated without his consent, following a performance.
The settings for Titus Andronicus
The settings are Rome in Italy
The play is categorised as a Tragedy
Number of words in Titus Andronicus
The number of words in the script, according to the Complete Public Domain Text is 21,798.
Most important characters
The most important characters are:
Titus Andronicus and Saturninus
Famous Quotes / Quotations
The quotes from Titus Andronicus are amongst Shakespeare's most famous and include 'These words are razors'. Details of this famous quote follows, complete with information regarding the Act and the Scene, allowing a quick reference to the section of the play that this quotation can be found in. Please click here for the full text of the script of the play.
"These words are razors to my wounded heart". (Act I, Scene I).
History of Titus Andronicus
The main characters was based on characters from Roman history
William Shakespeare's Main Source
Shakespeare was probably inspired by Thyestes and Troades by Seneca and Hecuba by Euripides.
The Cast and Characters
Click the link to access a list of all the cast and characters.