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The Two Noble Kinsmen is a play, written in 1613 and published in quarto in 1654, which has been attributed to John Fletcher and William Shakespeare in collaboration. About half of it seems to be written by Shakespeare and half by Fletcher.
Palamon and Arcite, cousins and close friends, are imprisoned by the Athenians after a battle. From their prison window they see Princess Emilia, and since both fall in love with her, their friendship turns to bitter rivalry. Upon Arcite's release he is banished from Thebes, but he returns to find Emilia and becomes appointed her attendant.
Meanwhile, the jailer's daughter has fallen in love with Palamon and helps him escape, after which he once again meets Arcite. To settle their rivalry over Emilia, they decide to fight. Now the jailer's daughter, forsaken, goes mad, but her former lover regains her by convincing her that he is Palamon. Arcite wins the contest for Emilia, but soon afterward he is thrown from a horse and, with his dying breath, gives her to Palamon.