Each new generation of German writers has re-embarked on the translation of Shakespeares plays. In the 20 th century these translations were produced by the dozen sometimes within a single decade. Today it is quite normal for a new production of a Shakespeare play to come complete with a translation of its own: directors and their dramatic advisers strive to outdo one another with new translations that are very often no more than rehashes of earlier translations in the light of what is thought to be a more modern idiom or register. Not so Maik Hamburgers translation of A Midsummer Nights Dream. This, too, is a translation by a man of the theatre written for theatrical production. But it differs signally and significantly from the bungling efforts of many of his colleagues. It is sustained by profound knowledge of the language(s) and of drama in general and also demonstrates a high degree of sensitivity to the intricacies of a complex text and its historical and semantic dimensions.