"Thomas Kyd's The Spanish Tragedy is an outstanding landmark of Elizabethan tragedy. It probably inspired Shakespeare to write Hamlet, as it contains a ghost, murders that demand revenge, and a hero that hesitates and contemplates suicide. As a revenge tragedy, it set up the salient features of a dramatic genre that would last decades. Its hero, the aged marshal of Spain Hieronimo, soon became the archetypal stage representation of grief, rhetorical passion and madness. Hieronomi's main antagonist, Lorenzo, is one of the first Machiavellian characters of English drama. This edition explores the play in relation to its historical context and contemporary Iberian dynastic policy. It also offers a fresh assessment of its stage history and presents for the first time an integrated text inviting a reading of the play as it was published both in 1592 and in 1602." - Back Cover.