(Charles Isherwood’s article appeared in The New York Times, 8/21; via Pam Green.)

ASHLAND, Ore. — Even among the beleaguered heroes and heroines of Shakespeare’s late romances, the title character of “Pericles” stands out for the weight of strange misfortunes that chase him around the Mediterranean, and more than once dump him in it when the ships he’s traveling aboard founder. (A favorite stage direction: “Enter Pericles, wet.”)

He’s forced to flee his home country, Tyre, after he divines the secret of the temperamental ruler of Antioch — namely that he has been sleeping with his own daughter — and fears violent retribution. Later blows include the deaths of his wife and his daughter, although this being a romance, those disasters ultimately prove to be illusions.

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