The Revenger's Tragedy Summary

The Revenger’s Tragedy , The Revengers Tragedy, The Revenger’s Tragedy Summary may be a cynical revenge play by Middleton , a Jacobean playwright. it had been first performed in 1606 and portrays a tragic and impressive battle for power in an unnamed seventeenth-century Italian court. Although the play wasn’t performed for several years, it returned to popular favor within the twentieth century. Cyril Tourneur, an English soldier and dramatist, was thought for several years to be the author of The Revenger’s Play before it had been later attributed to Middleton. Middleton is one among the few Jacobean playwrights to realize success with both comedic and tragic plays.

The play’s main character is Vindici. He’s grieving for his recently deceased father, but that’s not his only concern. Vindici’s beloved, Gloriana, died a few years ago, and he’s never moved on. Vindici knows that a person known only because the Duke poisoned her. He plans on getting his revenge, albeit his brother, Hippolito, counsels against it.


The Duke poisoned Gloriana because she refused to roll in the hay him. He killed her to make sure nobody else could have her virginity. Vindici believes that the Duke’s host of male heirs are even as bad, and he pities any woman who gets involved them. As Vindici wonders the way to kill the Duke, a chance presents itself.

Hippolito tells Vindici that Lussurioso, the Duke’s son and heir by his first marriage, is trying to find a lady . He wants Hippolito to seek out him a procurer—someone who procures women—so he can satisfy his lusts. Even Hippolito admits that this might be a perfect opportunity for Vindici to avenge Gloriana’s murder. They agree that Vindici will pose as a procurer to urge on the brink of the Duke and his heirs.

Meanwhile, it transpires that the Duke’s youngest son, Junior, raped another man’s wife. Junior doesn’t deny the accusations but does attempt to say that she lusted after him. This confirms for Vindici and Hippolito that the Duke’s family is beyond redemption and that they deserve everything coming their way.

Vindici successfully poses as a procurer. Lussurioso tells him that he wants one woman in particular—Castiza, a gorgeous virgin who also happens to be Vindici’s sister. Vindici doesn’t react and instead pretends that he will help Lussurioso spend an evening together with her . He decides that he won’t kill the Duke but will instead kill Lussurioso.

First, however, Vindici decides to place his family to the test. He wonders if his mother will accept a bribe for her daughter’s virginity from a procurer. By the top of Act I, he hasn’t yet decided what he’ll do if his mother sells Castiza’s body so easily.

At the opening of Act II, Vindici tests his family. Castiza refuses to roll in the hay Lussurioso. Their mother is a smaller amount sure; she thinks they might do with the cash . Vindici reports the news to Lussurioso, who decides he must roll in the hay Castiza immediately. Meanwhile, the lady who Junior raped commits suicide, and Hippolito vows she should be avenged.

Neither Hippolito nor Vindici have any intention of letting Lussurioso near Castiza. The night Lussurioso expects to bed Castiza, they create a diversion—another man is sleeping with the Duchess, and Lussurioso must attend her to guard her honor. Lussurioso rushes to the bedchamber and finds that the Duchess is simply sleeping together with her own husband, the Duke.

The Duke demands to understand what’s happening , but Lussurioso doesn’t know what to inform him. He doesn’t want to admit that his mother could be sleeping with another man on the side. Because Lussurioso can’t explain why he burst into their bedroom, the Duke assumes he meant to kill him. Lussurioso is arrested for treason.

In the meantime, as Act III begins, the Duke calms down and orders his son be released. However, there’s confusion within the prison, and therefore the Duke’s youngest son, Junior, is executed on sight. The Duke doesn’t know this yet and instead approaches the procurer—Vindici in disguise. The Duke wants an effigy of Gloriana, and Vindici promises to acquire this.

Together, Vindici and Hippolito decide they’ll kill the Duke by poisoning the effigy. When the Duke kisses the effigy, he falls to his knees. Now that he’s weakened, Vindici stabs him and admits what he’s done.

Act IV begins with Lussurioso pondering what’s happened to the Duke. He believes the procurer somehow poisoned his father. He wants to kill the procurer and have Vindici take his place. Hippolito thinks this is often an exquisite idea, because Lussurioso has no clue that Vindici is basically the procurer. this will be their ultimate revenge.

In Act V, Lussurioso is known as the new Duke. This enrages the remainder of the Duke’s family, who all think they need what it takes to steer the house. within the commotion, Hippolito and Vindici kill the new Duke. Hippolito escapes the scene, but Vindici declares what he’s done because he’s so pleased with his own accomplishments.

Shocked and horrified at Vindici’s declaration, other courtiers and nobles sentence him to death. Vindici doesn’t care about death because he’s glad to follow Gloriana. He’s achieved his true goal: avenging her murder.


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