2 First Things FirstReading Shakespeare is just like any other type of reading, it just takes familiarization with confusing vocabulary, sentence structure, and unfamiliar plots.With this in mind, say to yourself:I can do this!I CAN DO THIS!
3 He Said What?In order to be successful , you need to get used to the archaic language:The word "thou" or "thee" means "you""art“ means "are"When you hear anything that ends in "-st", don't freak out. Shakespeare adds "-st" to just about any word, thus "mayst not" = "may not".Shakespeare also likes to take out syllables to make the line flow smoother. For example: "o' th' " means "on the".
4 What did he say? Paraphrase: "For in my sight, she uses thee kindly, but thou liest in thy throat."P: "From what I see, she is kind to you, but you are a liar.""No, faith, I'll not stay a jot longer!"P: "No, I will not stay here a second longer!"What light through yonder window breaks, it is the east and Juliet is the sun."P: "Juliet is as radiant with beauty as the sun is radiant with light".*Remember, people were still people 500 years ago, and even though they talked fancier, they still had emotions like we do.
5 Unusual Word Arrangements Students have asked me if people really spoke the way they do in Shakespeare's plays. The answer is no. Shakespeare wrote the way he did for poetic and dramatic purposes. There are many reasons why he did this--to create a specific poetic rhythm, to emphasize a certain word, to give a character a specific speech pattern, etc. Example:I ate the sandwich I the sandwich ate. Ate the sandwich I Ate I the sandwich. The sandwich I ate The sandwich ate I.When you are reading Shakespeare's plays, look for this type of unusual word arrangement. Locate the subject, verb, and the object of the sentence. Notice that the object of the sentence is often placed at the beginning (the sandwich) in front of the verb (ate) and subject (I). Rearrange the words in the order that makes the most sense to you (I ate the sandwich). This will be one of your first steps in making sense of Shakespeare's language.
6 Omissions: Words & Letters Again, for the sake of his poetry, Shakespeare often left out letters, syllables, and whole words. Think about how we speak today:"Been to class yet?" "No. Heard Zoratti’s givin' a test." "Wha'sup wi'that?"We leave out words and parts of words to speed up our speech. If we were speaking in complete sentences, we would say:"Have you been to class yet?" "No, I have not been to class. I heard that Mrs. Zoratti is giving a test today." "What is up with that?"
7 Omissions: Words & Letters A few examples of Shakespearean omissions/contractions follow:'tis ~ it is ope ~ open o'er ~ over gi' ~ give ne'er ~ neveri' ~ in e'er ~ ever oft ~ often a' ~ he e'en ~ even
8 Why leave out parts of words? Shakespeare played with words in order to create the rhyme scheme and meter he wanted.He often used Iambic Pentameter. Bonus points for the student who can explain Iambic Pentameter to the class 1 iamb = 1 unstressed and 1 stressed syllableHe uses 5 iambs in most lines (10 syllables)But soft what light through yonder window breaks?
9 Homework: Respond to the questions and take notes as directed Shakespeare BootcampHomework: Respond to the questions and take notes as directed
10 Look at these lines from Shakespeare’s play The Winter’s Tale PAULINA:What studied torments, tyrant, hast for me?What wheels? racks? fires? what flaying? boiling?In leads or oils? what old or newer tortureMust I receive, whose every word deservesTo taste of thy most worst? Thy tyrannyTogether working with thy jealousies,Fancies too weak for boys, too green and idleFor girls of nine, O, think what they have doneAnd then run mad indeed, stark mad! for allThy by-gone fooleries were but spices of it.Looking at all of these lines, what phoneme (sound) seems to be popping up over and over again?Even without knowing the plot of this story, what do you think she is saying and what can you guess is her emotional state of mind?
11 Is punctuation important? Well, look at these two sentences and tell me if they mean different things?A woman, without her man, is nothing.A woman: without her, man is nothing.What do each of these sentences mean?
12 How to read using Shakespeare’s Punctuation (take notes) Punctuation is Shakespeare’s way of giving you clues.An end stop (.!?) indicates the conclusion of one idea/sentence that Shakespeare is trying to develop; as such, you are read the text as a complete sentence. Do not take breaks at the ends of lines in the speech until you get to the end stop.Commas (,) are used for quick pauses, but you should not stop at them.
13 How to read using Shakespeare’s Punctuation (take notes) Semicolons (;) are used to show that the character’s thoughts are rushing forward. So when you see a semicolon, take a quick breath then punch through to the next thought.Think “and”More mild, but more harmful; Kind in hatred.More mild, but more harmful; (and) Kind in hatred.
14 How to read using Shakespeare’s Punctuation (take notes) Colons (:) are used to show a character’s thoughts becoming more clear.Think “therefore”Their wives have sense like them: They see and smell as Husbands haveTheir wives have sense like them: (therefore) They see and smell as Husbands have.With colons you should also make a physical movement to accentuate the “therefore”Parentheses ( ) Whenever you see this, it is an opportunity to change either the tempo, volume, emotion, or pitch.
15 from Henry IV Part I What is his thought in: Line one Hotspur:My liege, I did deny no prisoners. But I remember, when the fight was done, When I was dry with rage and extreme toil, Breathless and faint, leaning upon my sword, Came there a certain lord, neat, and trimly dress'd, Fresh as a bridegroom; and his chin new reap'd Show'd like a stubble-land at harvest-home; He was perfumed like a milliner; And 'twixt his finger and his thumb he held A pouncet-box, which ever and anon He gave his nose and took't away again; Who therewith angry, when it next came there, Took it in snuff; and still he smiled and talk'd, And as the soldiers bore dead bodies by, He call'd them untaught knaves, unmannerly, To bring a slovenly unhandsome corse Betwixt the wind and his nobility.What is his thought in:Line oneLines two to sevenLines eight to thirteenWhat happens in the middle of line 13?How do things change from that break in 13 through the rest of the lines?What is the significance of the punctuation in these lines?51015
16 Translate Hotspur’s speech into modern language Sir, I didn’t hold back any prisoners.But I remember this: when the battle ended, I was exhausted with rage and exertion.I was out of breath, dizzy and bent over.All of a sudden a man approached me, neat, clean, and tidily dressed, like a bridegroom.His beard was freshly shaven, like a newly plowed field.He wore fancy cologne and he carried a perfume box, which he kept raising to his nose as he smiled and talked on.Whenever soldiers walked past, bearing dead bodies, he called them rude hoodlums for bringing a foul, disgusting corpse within breathing distance of him.
17 Descriptive Words Establish Character I bolded the adjectives for you, but now I ask you: What do these adjectives reveal about Othello’s character?Has he changed at all?If he has how, if not, why not?Othello -I had been happy, if the general camp, Pioners and all, had tasted her sweet body, So I had nothing known. O, now, for ever Farewell the tranquil mind! farewell content! Farewell the plumed troop, and the big wars, That make ambition virtue! O, farewell! Farewell the neighing steed, and the shrill trump, The spirit-stirring drum, the ear-piercing fife, The royal banner, and all quality, Pride, pomp and circumstance of glorious war! And, O you mortal engines, whose rude throats The immortal Jove's dead clamours counterfeit, Farewell! Othello's occupation's gone!
Your consent to our cookies if you continue to use this website.