Synopses & Reviews
Although John Dryden the poet is best known for his alexandrine epics, John Dryden the playwright is most honored for this blank verse tragedy. The summit of Dryden's dramatic art, All for Love (1677) is a spectacle of passion as felt, feared, and disputed in the suspicious years following the English Civil War.
Due to its dramatic compression and elegance, All for Love is one of the most enduring plays of the Restoration repertory. It was so successful that in the eighteenth century Dryden's tragedy drove Shakespeare's Antony and Cleopatra from the stage.
The play depicts the catastrophic passion of Cleopatra and Marc Antony, who could not be conquered but by love. Fidelity to family and friends, adherence to codes of honor, national loyalties, and the rule of law compete with each other, tearing the world with violence.