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"The Tale of Kieu." Viet Nam's greatest work of Literature

Nguyen Du's "The Tale of Kieu" and Christopher Marlowe's "Dr Faustus" have always struck me as providing a similar concept of reality, though Kieu finds redemption and Dr Faustus finds damnation.


"This we have learned: with Heaven rest all things. Heaven appoints each human to a place . . . Our karma we must carry as our lot - let's stop decrying Heaven's whims and quirks. Inside ourselves there lies the root of good: the heart outweighs all talents on this earth"
(p.167).

MEPHASTOPHILIS: Why this is hell, nor am I out of it.
Think’st thou that I, who saw the face of God,
And tasted the eternal joys of heaven,
Am not tormented with ten thousand hells
In being deprived of everlasting bliss?
O Faustus, leave these frivolous demands,
Which strike a terror to my fainting soul.
FAUSTUS: What, is great Mephastophilis so passionate
For being deprivèd of the joys of heaven?
Learn thou of Faustus manly fortitude,
And scorn those joys thou never shalt possess.
           (3.76–86)

I like Dante's Inferno, but he lacked the foresight to envision my evil existence, so failed to add the extra circle required when I stuff it.

70 years old :

MEPHASTOPHILIS

https://pbs.twimg.com/profile_images/658746945565954048/Zrf2h3RD.jpg

Spelling was much less consistent back then and has changed over the centuries. This was a copy and paste.

Also enjoy Dante

Marlowe like Shakespeare was a playwright and the exact words and spellings varied  from performance to performance. Scripts were constantly modified and upgraded.

Willy is always top of my list.
McB is way better than McD any day of the week.
Shakespeare has a further advantage as he really bugs the language purists, in that he messed the language of his day up as he pleased, inventing words and phrases willy nilly.
Wonderful.

Fred :

Willy is always top of my list.
McB is way better than McD any day of the week.
Shakespeare has a further advantage as he really bugs the language purists, in that he messed the language of his day up as he pleased, inventing words and phrases willy nilly.
Wonderful.

I've read a number of books on the subjects of Languages and the English Language in particular. How much I gained from them is another question. I also more or less claim 4 languages. But I am not smart enough to read "El Cid" in Spanish or the "Tale of Kieu" in Vietnamese or for that matter much of anything in Japanese.

Anyway, the Language Historians that I've read tend to agree that Shakespeare, Marlowe etc. are to be blamed for making English the de facto 2nd language for the world.

As to polish and contribution to the English language, you are correct. As for Marlowe, he died young. Who knows what he could have accomplished, had he lived longer?

But Marlowe, Miguel de Cervantes, Cato(both younger and elder) and Nguyen Du touch my soul in a way that Shakespeare does not.

Queen Lizzie did a lot to spread English, mostly by stealing things.

Fred :

Queen Lizzie did a lot to spread English, mostly by stealing things.

I think a fairer statement would be that she was a more competent thief than the leaders of many of the competing countries. While thieving and theft among nations is still practiced, Hugo Grotius did start reducing that issue. I took a 400 level U of Maryland course in International Law a long time ago. International Law is a fascinating subject and the actuality behind the term is rather deceptive.

I think a fairer statement would be that she was a more competent thief than the leaders of many of the competing countries

That's extremely fair, but I suppose the real truth is she was just a power mad, greedy and murderous pantai of the worst sort.
There's little wonder the Spanish sent the armada, but their planning was really crappy (The EU never worked :D).

70 years old :

Spelling was much less consistent back then and has changed over the centuries. This was a copy and paste.

I've been exploring a little morphology, seeing reasonably clear links between modern words and their supposed etymologies, but quite how MEPHASTOPHILIS morphed into "I'm lovin it" is unclear - but obviously true.

Nguyen Du

I'm into classical English stuff (I'm old, fat and boring), so Nguyen Du is unlikely to make it to the top of my reading list, especially as I've just discovered the art world, giving me a whole new planet to explore.
I always assumed art was a bit rubbish, something traded by people with more cash than brains, and talked about by men who never managed to get to bed with women, but I may have been hasty in my condemnations.

Homer, Aristotle, Thucydides, Virgil, a lot of the Romans and a lot of Japanese and Chinese literature and history as well. Fair amount of Cherokee History as well as Aztec and Mayan history. Delved into studying about Christianity, Buddhism, Shinto and some of the Norse Religions. One of my Degrees is in Government. Heavy into Military History and Procedures. Made a serious study of Vietnamese History as this is where I have been at the pointy end of the stick. One advantage of a Military Career is that you have a wide exposer to opportunities for education, I've attended 17 Colleges and Universities in three countries. Three of those Universities were in Viet Nam. Note, I was out of the Military and using my GI Bill at that time.

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