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The Dark Lady is a stock character in fiction. Her darkness is either literal, meaning that she has a dark skin, or metaphorical in that she is a tragic, doomed figure. The two may go together, with one being an allegory for the other. The Dark Lady is not usually seen to be married to a Dark Lord.
William Shakespeare wrote of a Dark Lady in his sonnets. The woman is described as having both dark features and having a dark nature. There has been much speculation as to her true identity. He also created several, doomed dark ladies as characters in his plays such as Cleopatra and Lady Macbeth.
In American literature 
See also 
- Hudson Shakespeare Company, Dark Lady Sonnets
- PBS, In Search of Shakespeare: Emilia Lanier (the Dark Lady?), series originally broadcast February 4th - 25th, 2004
- Ludwig Jekels, "The Riddle of Shakespeare's Macbeth", The Psychoanalytic Review 30: 361–385
- Clara E. Rodriguez (1997), Latin Looks: Images of Latinas and Latinos in the U.S. Media, Boulder, Colo. ;Cumnor Hill, Oxford: Westview Pr., ISBN 0-8133-2766-0
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