Posted by: Sally Ingraham | April 23, 2009

Happy Birthday Shakespeare!

ShakespeareAnother gem of information garnered from NPR’s 8 o’clock news – it is the 445th anniversary of Shakespeare’s birth (approx. – his actual birth date is unknown). The mayor of Chicago declared today “Talk Like Shakespeare Day”. The site created for the event is full of fun information. I may have to print out the Shakespeare mask and wear it to work at Reel Pizza Cinerama later today! Meanwhile, I will pepper my speech with “Methinks” and “in sooth” and add plenty of “eth”s to the end of verbs, and if I get upset with anyone I will certainly call them “Thou frothy ill-bred foot-licker!” (Generate your own Shakespearean insults here!)

My favorite play, hands down, is Twelfth Night. The first lines spring to my mind every now and then, and I am possessed with a desire to reread it.

If music be the food of love, play on

Twelfth NightMy sisters and friends and I used to act out scenes from this play, tripping over the unfamiliar phrasing and dissolving into laughter more often than not. I always wanted to play the Clown – I spent some time today looking for my favorite thing he says in the play, and ended up reading a large amount of it and not being able to decide. It’s all so good! 🙂

I’ve never read the complete works, so maybe I’ll add that to my list of things to do this year. I love to hold the physical book in my hands, but just in case, they’re all available online here.

Here’s a little song sung by Feste the Clown, which always seems sad to me, but very lovely:

What is love? ’tis not hereafter;
Present mirth hath present laughter;
What’s to come is still unsure:
In delay there lies no plenty;
Then come kiss me, sweet and twenty,
Youth’s a stuff will not endure.

(And in the back of my head, Sir Toby Belch and Sir Andrew immediately pipe up with, “A mellifluous voice, as I am true knight.” – “A contagious breath.” – “Very sweet and contagious, i’ faith.”)

Happy Birthday Shakespeare!

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