in 1616, 400 years ago, William Shakespeare died in Stratford-upon-Avon.
"Good frend for Iesvs sake forbeare,
To digg the dvst encloased heare.
Bleste be man spares thes stones,
And cvrst be he moves my bones"
(Shakespeare’s epitaph on the stone slab covering his grave in Holy Trinity Church, Stratford-upon-Avon.)
“Bardolatry” G.B. Shaw called the Victorian’s nearly religious reverence of William Shakespeare, who was finally raised to Olympian heights a few generations before by the Romantics. On the British Islands, in the German speaking states and elsewhere in Europe. But he was a cultural phenomenon already centuries before. Of the 17,677 words Shakespeare uses, he invented one-tenth, more than 1,700, himself by changing nouns into verbs, verbs into adjectives, pairing words into a new meaning and inventing some that had never been used before, from “advertising” (“Measure for Measure”) to “rant” (“Hamlet”) and “swagger” (“A Midsummer Night’s Dream”). No wonder, the actual earthly existence of this demi-god-like figure was called into question. As if the idea of an individual with an otherwise rather assessable biography, graduate of a grammar school, married, three children, decent marketing skills and a job as theatre director, being one of the greatest authors of world literature at the same time was simply unbearable.
But read more on: http://wunderkammertales.blogspot.de/2015/01/triumph-my-britain-thou-hast-one-to.html
* in a short article I actually wrote two years ago on the occasion of his 450th birthday in 2014. But one can’t celebrate Shakespeare enough, what? Bardolatry.
Depicted below is Sir John Gilbert’s (1817 – 1897) picture puzzle “The Plays of William Shakespeare“ (c. 1849) #shakespeare400 #shakespeare