Death’s Jest-Book by Thomas Lovell Beddoes

Comments taken from back cover of this edition:

Beddoes called his play “A Dithyrambic in the florid Gothic style.” Modelled on the “revenge” tragedies of the Jacobeans it it sustained by a poetry of glittering surface with an ever-present undertow of death and destruction tempered by humour deriving out of a remorseless sense of absurdity and alienation. Beddoes was certainly “possessed by death” but death is a theme played in several keys, allowing startling reversals of common values and perspectives. “Dead and living, which are which?” Readers of Death’s Jest-Book cannot easily tell.

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