Troilus and Cressida: by the numbers

Troilus and Cressida

So here’s the numerical breakdown…

  • 3308 total lines; longest of all problem plays, the third longest of the Canon (only Hamlet and Richard III have more lines), and thus longer than the average (play: 2768; problem play: 2731)
  • Act Five, Scenes Seven and Eight are the shortest of their kind in the Canon; no other play has a ninth and tenth scene of Act Five
  • Act Four, Scene Five is the longest of its kind in the Canon (292 lines)
  • Act One: 824 lines; longer than average (play: 582; problem play: 564); longest of the problem plays, fourth longest in the Canon
  • Act Two: 605 lines; longer than average (play: 567, problem play: 588)
  • Act Three: 668 lines; longer than average (play: 576; problem play: 571)
  • Act Four: 638 lines; longer than average (play: 560, problem play: 558)
  • Act Five: 633 lines; longer than average (play: 484, problem play: 448)
  • 1088 lines of prose (32.30% of total lines, which is more than the average of play [26.32%], and slightly less than the average problem play [34.16%]); compare with The Comedy of Errors: 13.31%, Titus Andronicus: 1.39%, The Taming of the Shrew: 20.82%, 1HenryVI: 0.37%, 2HenryVI: 16.64%, 3HenryVI: 0.14%, Richard III: 2.89%, Love’s Labor’s Lost: 35.08%, The Two Gentlemen of Verona: 26.81%, A Midsummer Night’s Dream: 19.75%, Romeo and Juliet: 14.18%, King John: 0.0%, The Merchant of Venice: 21.79%, Richard II: 0%, 1HenryIV: 44.7%, 2HenryIV: 50.36%, HenryV: 40.89%, Merry Wives: 88.20%, As You Like It: 56.12%, Much Ado: 77.78%, Caesar: 7.47%, Twelfth: 64.44% and Hamlet: 27.33%)
  • 182 rhyming lines (5.40% of total lines, which is lower than the average play [8.35%], but slightly more the average problem play [5.17%]; compare with Comedy: 20.10%, Titus: 2.42%, Taming: 3.93%, 1HenryVI: 9.79%, 2HenryVI: 3.16%, 3HenryVI: 5.37%, Richard III: 7.55%, LLL: 40.86%, 2Gents: 35.08%, Midsummer: 43.5%, Romeo: 16.61%, King John: 6.19%, Merchant: 5.16%, Richard II: 18.95%, 1HenryIV: 1.04%, 2HenryIV: 2.32%, HenryV: 1.80%, Merry Wives: 3.79%, As You Like It: 10.87%, and Much Ado: 2.43%, Caesar: 0.41%,  Twelfth: 6.09%, and Hamlet: 4.91%)
  • 25 scenes; more than average (plays: 21; problem play: 20)
  • 30 characters; less than average (plays: 36; problem play: 32)

Check out our “by the numbers” breakdown as an infographic!

Troilus and Cressida: By the Numbers (jpeg; thumbnail)

[download the pdf (539 Kb)]

Also, the below graphic gives a representation of which characters appear in what scenes in the play.

Troilus and Cressida: breakdown of which characters appear in what scenes
Troilus and Cressida: breakdown of which characters appear in what scenes

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