When Miguel Cervantes's Don Quixote was published in Madrid in 1605, interwoven into the tale of the errant knight was a novella featuring an Andalusian nobleman, Cardenio, and his misfortunes in love. In the decades that followed, adaptations of Cervantes's episodic plots appeared in books, on stages, in street festivals, and throughout other venues in Spain, France, and England. The “lost play” in the subtitle of Roger Chartier's monograph is one of these re-creations, or at least that's what evidence from the archives suggests. In late 1612 and early 1613, an English play titled “Cardenno”/“Cardenna” was performed for festivities at the English court, and payments for the performances were awarded to agents of the King's Men, the playing company that staged it. No author was recorded, and no text has survived. Although the English publisher Humphrey Mosely registered a copy of The History of Cardenio by “M. Fletcher & Shakespeare”...

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