Monday, April 25, 2016

We All Quote Shakespeare Now and Then

Last Saturday was the 400th anniversary of the death of William Shakespeare. Celebrations of the noted playwright spread across the globe. I even heard about 3 women here in my community who went to lunch to honor his memory on Saturday.

This anniversary seems to have garnered more attention than marking his birth that occurred 52 years prior to his death. Did you know that he was born on April 23rd, 1564 and also died on April 23rd, 1616 in Stratford-upon-Avon, UK? Rare is the man who dies on his birthday. None by choice, most likely.

There have been all kinds of theories about his career as a playwright--that someone else actually wrote the plays for him. Never proven or he would not be as popular today.

I found a fun website that highlighted 10 phrases from Shakespeare's works that we still use today. Many of us have said them without ever realizing we are quoting Shakespeare. If you want to read the entire page with the source of the sayings, go here. Wouldn't we all love to think that the words we have written will still be read, heard and said more than 400 years from now? Just imagine!

For those who want only the list, here it is: (note that all are actual quotes from the plays)

  • Good riddance
  • Break the ice
  • Wild goose chase
  • Love is blind
  • Naked truth
  • Brave new world
  • Green eyed monster
  • Bated breath
  • (Fight) fire with fire
  • Laughing stock
We've all used at least some of the quotes in the list, whether in conversaton or when we write. I'm quite sure that my critique group would mark some of them with cliche. No doubt they might be considered such having been used for more than 400 years. Even so, these are some very good sayings.

Shakespeare's Birthplace

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