Shakespeare - favorite plays and quotes

What other authors do Tolkien fans enjoy? Come on in and enter into a broadened conversation on the great literature of this and other times.

Postby Oyarsa » Tue Feb 19, 2002 11:56 pm

Though it sounds cliché, I truly love Shakespeare. My favorite play is <i>Hamlet</i>, and if asked, I can recite his 'To be' speech without hesitation. This is a thread for people who enjoy Shakespeare and would care to share their favorite play(s) and/or quote(s).<BR><BR><BR>As I've mentioned above, my favorite play is <i>Hamlet</i>, though I also enjoy <i>A Midsummer Night's Dream.</i><BR><BR>Thusly, my favorite quote is from Hamlet Act III scene i.<BR><BR>"To be, or not to be, --that is the question:--<BR>Whether tis nobler in the mind to suffer<BR>The slings and arrows of outrageous fortune,<BR>Or to take arms against a sea of troubles, <BR>And by opposing end them? --To die, --to sleep,--<BR>No more; and by a sleep to say we end<BR>The heart-ache, and the thousand natural shocks<BR>That flesh is heir to, 'tis a consummation<BR>Devoutly to be wisht, To die, --to sleep;--<BR>To sleep! perchance to dream: ay, there's the rub;<BR>For in that sleep of death what dreams may come,<BR>When we have shuffled off this mortal coil,<BR>Must give us pause: there's the respect <BR>That makes calamity of so long life;<BR>For who would bear the whips and scorns of time,<BR>The oppressor's wrong, the proud man's contumely,<BR>The pangs of despised love, the law's delay,<BR>The insolence of office, and the spurns <BR>That patient merit of the unworthy takes,<BR>When he himself might his quietus make<BR>With a bare bodkin? who would fardels bear,<BR>To grunt and sweat under a weary life,<BR>But that the dread of something after death,--<BR>The undiscover'd country, from whose bourn<BR>No traveller returns, --puzzles the will,<BR>And makes us rather bear those ills we have<BR>Than fly to others that we know not of?<BR>Thus conscience does make cowards of us all;<BR>And thus the native hue of resolution<BR>Is sicklied o'er with the pale cast of thought;<BR>And enterprises of great pith and moment,<BR>With this regard, their currents turn awry,<BR>And lose the name of action."<BR><BR><BR>Please feel free to share your thoughts and opinions, along with your favorite plays and quotes. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby Gilvala » Wed Feb 20, 2002 1:08 am

Hi, I had to read Romeo and Juliet for school and it was ok, but the archaic language is hard to get. I read Othello, King Lear, and a couple of other famous ones, but thats about it. They weren't too bad, I guess. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby AndyM » Wed Feb 20, 2002 1:31 am

I read Macbeth and Romeo + Juliet at school, they were quite good.
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Postby Moongirl » Wed Feb 20, 2002 3:34 am

Shakespeare wrote so many wonderful plays and poems that I hardly know which is my overall favorite.<BR><BR>but there are several tied for that spot.<BR><BR>I think I will leave this:<BR><BR>...he that hath a beard is more than an youth,<BR>and he that hath no beard is less than a man.<BR>and he that is more than a youth is not for me,<BR>and he that is less than a man, I am not for him....<BR><BR>Much Ado About Nothing Act II Scene I <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0><img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0>
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Postby Oyarsa » Wed Feb 20, 2002 11:04 am

Gilvala, you're right, the language which Shakespeare uses is often very difficult to understand. It is almost like trying to read a foreign language when one is not familiar with it. I'm glad that you didn't find the experience 'too bad.' <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR>AndyM, I'm glad you enjoyed <i>Romeo and Juliet.</i> <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> When you read them in school, did you have to act the scenes out? *laughs* I recall having to stand on a table for the 'balcony scene.' <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-tongue.gif"border=0><BR><BR>Thank you for sharing Moongirl! I too enjoyed the play <i>Much Ado About Nothing</i>. LOL, I liked your quote! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0>
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Postby TenthNazgul » Thu Feb 21, 2002 10:01 am

I love Midsummer's Night Dream, Hamlet, and Much Ado About Nothing.
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Postby Tovar » Thu Feb 21, 2002 11:19 am

I LOVE Much Ado About Nothing. We did it my senior year of high school, and I played Benedick. He has the FUNNIEST lines in all of Shakespeare's work. <BR><BR>My favorite (entirely from memory, so some may be wrong):<BR><BR>"I do much wonder that one man, seeing how much another man is a fool when he dedicates his behaviors to love, will, after he hath laughed at such shallow follies in others become the argument of his own scorn by falling in love. And such a man is Claudio. I have known when there was no music in him but the drum and the fife, and now had he rather hear the tabor and the pipe. I have known when he would walk ten mile afoot to see a good armor. Now he would lie ten nights awake carving the fashion of a new doublet. He was wont to speak plain, and to the purpose, like an honest man and a soldier. Now he is turned orthography. His words are a very fantastical banquet - just so many strange dishes. May I ever be so converted, and see with these eyes? I cannot tell; I think not. One woman is wise, yet I am well. Another is fair, yet I am well. Another virtuous, and yet I am well. But til all graces be in one woman, one woman shall not come into my grace. Rich she shall be, that's certain. Wise, or I'll none. Virtuous, or I'll never cheapen her. Fair, or I'll not look upon her. Mild, or come not near me! Noble, or not I for an angel. Of good discourse, an excellent musician, and her hair will be of what color it please God..."<BR><BR>Hehe...Benedick's so witty...
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Postby Tovar » Thu Feb 21, 2002 11:20 am

By the way Oyarsa, would you happen to be involved with theatre?
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Postby Ciarnait » Thu Feb 21, 2002 11:30 am

I love Shakespeare, odd though it may sound........ I think my favourite play is either Twelfth Night or Macbeth, though I love Much Ado About Nothing and Hamlet.
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Postby Khamul'sshadow » Fri Feb 22, 2002 4:23 am

Well Oyarsa, we finally have found common ground <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0><img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> I love<BR>Shakespeare, especially in the theatre where it was meant to be.<BR>Favourite plays : Macbeth, King Lear, Hamlet, Othello, Richard III,<BR>The Tempest, Henry IV part I, and the Merchant of Venice. I'll be<BR>back later with some of my favourite quotations.
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Postby blondewookiee » Fri Feb 22, 2002 4:28 am

Midsummer Nights Dream is my favorite Shakespeare play.<BR><i>Low am I. But not so low as to scratch thine eyes.</i>(or something to thaat effect I can't remember how it goes without the play infront of me)
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Postby Oyarsa » Fri Feb 22, 2002 9:20 am

TenthNazgul, good choices! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> Those are three very good plays! Have you read any others?<BR><BR>Tovar, thank you for the quote! Wonderful! As to your question, alas, I am not involved in theater. My acting ability leaves much to be desired. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> Which is too bad...I love the theater. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> Are you involved in the theater at all? If so, have you been in any plays by Shakespeare?<BR><BR>Ciarnait, thank you for sharing. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> I read Twelfth Night more than ten years ago...I'm going to have to reread it now. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0><BR><BR>Khamul! *gives Kham the promised hug* <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> I'm glad to discover that a formidable wraith such as yourself, has a great appreciation for Shakespeare. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> Seriously though, one of my favorite pasttimes is going to the theater to see a play by Shakespeare. So far, I have seen Hamlet, A Midsummer Night's Dream, Julius Caeser, The Taming of the Shrew, Macbeth, and Othello. I hope to see more, and I eagerly look forward to your quotes. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR>blondewookiee, Act III, scene ii. Good quote <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> ...poor Hermia! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0>
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Postby Durin VIII » Fri Feb 22, 2002 9:27 am

Like Khamul'sshadow I feel the plays should be seen in the theater and not read. Well if you are going to perform them I guess you need to read the play to learn your lines.<BR><BR>I have 6 more to see live for me to say I have seen them all. Dang those 3 parts of Henry VI! The Utah Shakespeare festival is doing Cymbeline this summer so I might do a road trip to see that one.<BR><BR>My favorite's are King Lear and Twelfth Night.
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Postby quarkstomper » Fri Feb 22, 2002 11:00 am

The best way to read Shakespeare is aloud; just running through the archaisms and obscurities like a bulldozer and letting the music of the language roll off your tounge. Of course, then people will look at you strangely.<BR><BR>In college I got to play Snug the Joiner in "A Midsummer Night's Dream." Lessee... how did it go...<BR><BR>"You ladies, you, whose gentle hearts do fear,<BR>The smallest, monstrous mouse that creeps upon the floor.<BR>Mayhap will quake and tremble here<BR>When Lion, rough in wildest rage, doth roar.<BR>But know that I as Snug the Joiner am<BR>A lion fell, or else no lion's dam;<BR>And if I should as Lion come in strife<BR>Into this place, were pity on my life."<BR><BR>I tried out for "Twelfth Night" the following year, but didn't make it. Pity. That's another fun one. I remember the BBC production of it staring Felicity Kendall. (*sigh*) Felicity Kendall. I had a crush on her.<BR><BR>At one time I had a tape of a production of "A Comedy of Errors" perfomed by the Flying Karamartzov Brothers juggling troupe. It got a bit long, but it was wild, insane fun.<BR>
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Postby Tempest » Fri Feb 22, 2002 1:22 pm

Much Ado About Nothing<BR><BR>Twelfth Night<BR><BR>Othello<BR><BR>(I could go on and on. I'm actually just about to teach Romeo and Juliet to a bunch of ninth graders.)
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Postby seaserpent » Fri Feb 22, 2002 6:09 pm

Othello.
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Postby _gollum_ » Fri Feb 22, 2002 8:26 pm

Macbeth is one of my favorites...
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Postby Oyarsa » Fri Feb 22, 2002 10:12 pm

Durin VIII: It is my hope that in my lifetime, I will have the chance to see all of Shakespeare's plays performed in a theater. I have read all of his plays, but in order to get the 'total' experience of Shakespeare, one must see it peformed. <BR><BR>quarkstomper: Thank you for sharing your quote! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> I too have often sat in an empty room just reading Shakespeare out loud. btw, may I ask how you chose your name?<BR><BR>Tempest: Greetings! Romeo and Juliet was the first Shakespearian play that I ever read. It was quite wonderful. Since you are teaching, do you have your students read the play out loud and/or act it out in class?<BR><BR>seaserpent: Thank you for sharing. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> Othello is a very good play.<BR><BR>_gollum_: Macbeth is definitely worthy of your appreciation.
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Postby Aurandir » Fri Feb 22, 2002 10:49 pm

Henry V! I think it's one of the greatest(so do a lot of other people <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>) <BR>My favorite passages of the play are at the seige of Harfleur:<BR>"Once more into the breach dear friends, once more, and upon this charge cry God for Harry, England, and Saint George!"<BR>The trials of being a King the night before the battle and the speech right before the battle starting with: <BR>"What's he that wisheth so? My cousin Westmoreland?..."<BR>Although the whole play is filled with great lines and passages.
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Postby miraged_image » Sat Feb 23, 2002 4:24 am

Macbeth is a wonderful play. Although many stalwart Shakespeare admirers reject it as too bloodthirsty, I believe the writer captures the characteristics of each of his characters perfectly. Lady Macbeth is my particular favourite, and some of her soliloquay is so evil it's a wonder Shakespeare wasn't accused of witchcraft.<BR><BR><img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0>
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Postby niniel* » Sat Feb 23, 2002 5:19 am

One of my favorites is 'King Lear', who is tragically so stupid that he decides to divide his lands between his daughters according to how much they say they love him. In the end he gets what he deserves!<BR><BR>The plays, though should be watched or performed in rather than read, because aferall, they are PLAYS and not novels.<BR><BR>I went to see 'A midsummers night dream' and 'Much ado about nothing' at an open air theater with the sea as a backdrop, in Cornwall. As you can imagine, there was a great atmosphere. If they took students to see the plays first, I'm sure they would have more interest in them.
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Postby quarkstomper » Sat Feb 23, 2002 10:38 am

Oyarsa: "Bif Quarkstomper" is the name of a character from an obscure comic book from a while back. He was a Han Solo-ish space pilot with an obsession with 20th-Century earth movies. "Of course I've heard of Shakespeare! Hamlet, Mel Gibson, 1990. He also used to write for the BBC."
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Postby Galenmir » Sat Feb 23, 2002 11:14 am

I'm a history play addict! Richard II, Henry VI (parts 1 and 2), Henry V, Henry VI (parts 1, 2 and 3) and Richard III, of course. There's a great set of lines in Richard III that sums up the GLORIOUS confusion of the histories:<BR><BR><b>Queen Margaret:</b><BR>I had an Edward, till a Richard killed him.<BR>I had a Harry, till a Richard killed him.<BR>Thou hadst an Edward, till a Richard killed him.<BR>Thou hadst a Richard, till a Richard killed him.<BR><BR><b>Duchess of York</b><BR>I had a Richard too, and thou didst kill him.<BR>I had a Rutland too, thou holp'st to kill him.<BR><BR><b>Queen Margaret:</b><BR>Thou hadst a Clarence too, and Richard killed him.<BR>From forth the kennel of thy womb hath crept<BR>A hell-hound that doth hunt us all to death.<BR><BR>Try sorting that out! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0>
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Postby InnocentEvil » Sat Feb 23, 2002 12:27 pm

I can't believe no one's mentioned my absolute favorite of favorites: <u>The Taming Of The Shrew</u><BR><BR>Kate is indeed tamed and in fine comic, yet oddly tender style. I do not have a copy of the play but my favorite lines are her monologue at the end about respect by a women for her husband.<BR><BR>Next would have to come <u>A Midsummer's Nights Dream</u> Even though it bombed in the theater, the version with Michelle Pfieffer brought tears to my eyes.<BR><BR>If one CAN go to see a play staged it's such a wonderful way to experience his work, but if not, reading aloud is absolutely necessary.
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Postby Nerdanel » Sat Feb 23, 2002 1:27 pm

My favorite is Hamlet, though I have to admit I haven't really read all that much Shakespeare. He is pretty easy to avoid in my country where he isn't a cultural fixture same way as in England.
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Postby Tovar » Sat Feb 23, 2002 6:13 pm

Oyarsa:<BR><BR>I love acting. I am currently a Theatre Arts major at the University of North Texas. I'm only a freshman, and haven't been in any productions here yet, but in high school I was in Much Ado About Nothing, as Benedick. I did other non-Shakespeare plays, but Benedick was my very favorite role.
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Postby Tempest » Sat Feb 23, 2002 7:08 pm

Oyarsa --I'm going to have my students read it outloud and also give them a chance to act out a few scenes. The language is hard for them, since this is their first exposure to Shakespeare.
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Postby Llew » Sat Feb 23, 2002 10:04 pm

" God gives you one face, and yet you paint another .... Get thee to a nunnary"<BR><hamlet>
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Postby Oyarsa » Sun Feb 24, 2002 1:23 am

Aurandir: I agree that <i>Henry V</i> is a great play...though I must admit I think nearly all of Shakespeare's plays are great. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> <BR><i>"The game's afoot: Follow your spirit; and, upon this charge, Cry 'God for Harry, England, and Saint Goerge!" (Act III, scene i)</i> <BR>A truly inspiring quote! And also one of my favorites from the play. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR>miraged_image: I do not find <i>Macbeth</i> too bloodthirsty, and I must admit it surprises me when others voice that opinion. As far as that goes, the violence in <i>Macbeth</i> is nothing in comparison with many movies that I've seen. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> I am glad that there is another out there who shares my opinion concerning this incredibly artistic play. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0><BR><BR>nineil*: *laughs* King Lear definitely received his just reward. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> I agree with your comment...I think that students would truly find Shakespeare more interesting if they experienced his plays in a theater. *sighs* Unfortunately many schools are so under funded that experiences such as these are not possible. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0><BR><BR>quarkstomper: Thank you for the explanation. <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0> Though I've probably never heard of it, may I ask what the title of the comic book is?<BR><BR>Galenmir: *laughs* Thank you for your contribution. Those quotes are great! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0><BR><BR>InnocentEvil: "Fie, fie! unknit that threatening unkind brow: And dart not scornful glances from those eyes, To wound thy lord, thy king, thy governor: It blots thy beauty, as frosts do bite the meads; Confounds thy fame, as whirlwinds shake fair buds; And in no sense is meet or amiable. ... " (Act V scene ii) Good quote! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR>I saw the movie <u>A Midsummer Night's Dream</u> I thought it was very nicely done. Have you by chance seen Kenneth Branagh's version of <i>Hamlet</i>? That is one of my favorite movies!<BR><BR>Nerdanel: I'm glad you are another <i>Hamlet</i> fan! May I ask where you are from?<BR><BR>Tovar: You're a Theater Arts major? Sounds fun! (I wish I could act! <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-sad.gif"border=0> <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-wink.gif"border=0> ) btw, have you by chance read the play, <i>Waiting for Godot</i>? It is an amazing play! I took a course on Modern Drama my senior year in college, and it was my favorite by far. I also liked the play, <i>Six Characters in Search of an Author.</i> <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0><BR><BR>Tempest: I always enjoyed reading plays aloud in class. Acting them out was a bit difficult for me, but I still had fun with that too. My English class had the most fun with <i>The Merchant of Venice.</i> <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0> Have you begun teaching the play yet? If so, are they enjoying the experience? And you're right, the language of the plays if often very difficult to understand, especially if one is reading Shakespeare for the first time.<BR><BR>Llew: <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0> Another very good quote. Have you read any other Shakespearian plays? <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0>
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Postby Hero's Song » Sun Feb 24, 2002 1:56 pm

Wow! I'm so glad someone started this thread!<BR>My first experience with message boards was a Shakespeare one. That's where I took the name Hero (Much Ado is one of my favorites <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-smile.gif"border=0> ). When I started here the name Hero was taken so I modified it and have been Hero's Song ever since. <BR>I believe it's only natural that people (like us) who love words (the rhythm, rhyme, intricate meanings etc.) love the Bard AND Tolkien. Tolkien's understanding of language was so wonderful, I've often wondered if I should study philology myself. I find the origin and evolution of words fascinating.<BR>It was absolutely brilliant of PJ to hire McKellan and Holmes and other actors who had done Shakespeare to do the beautiful lines in LOTR and make them ring so true.<BR>I have found it hard to get into Shakespheare unless I first see it performed - then I'm hooked!<BR>Romeo and Juliet was very instrumental in my life in that listening to my big sister's LP of the Zefferelli version over and over as a child made me fall in love with acting, literature, poetry, writing, etc. <BR>I envy Tempest teaching it. I wish now that I had finished my degree and was teaching fine literature to teenagers. I hope to make it a reality someday. I have a friend who is teaching 7th graders The Hobbit. What fun! <BR>The only Shakespeare I ever saw performed live was Twelfth Night - my drama teacher took us to see it my senior year. It was hilarious. Most of the rest of the kids in my class were totally clueless as to what was going on <img src="i/expressions/face-icon-small-happy.gif"border=0> <BR>OK I've blabbed enough. There are WAY too many favorite quotes to know where to start, so I'll leave you with some I know best. <BR><BR>Juliet-<BR>My bounty is as boundless as the sea.<BR>My love is deep<BR>The more I give to thee the more I have<BR>For both are infinite.<BR><BR>They are but beggars that can count their worth!<BR>But my true love has grown to such excess,<BR>I cannot sum up some of half my wealth.<BR>---<BR>Prince - Where be these enemies? Capulet, Montague. See what a scourge is laid upon your hate that Heaven finds means to kill your joys with love? And I, for winking at your discord too, have lost a brace of kinsmen. All are punished!!!!<BR>---<BR>A glooming peace this morning with it brings.<BR>The sun, for sorrow, will not show its head. <BR>Go hence and have more talk of these sad things.<BR>Some shall be pardoned and some punished.<BR>For never was a story of more woe - <BR>than this of Juliet, and her Romeo. <BR>---<BR>
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