I think I have found the last piece of the puzzle that is Shylock's name.
Today is the 450th anniversary of Shakespeare's birth.
I have been waiting a long time for this day to share some discoveries I have made.
|Happy Birthday Shakespeare!|
|Shylock and Jessica, by Maurice Gottlieb 1876|
But where did the name Shylock come from?
And much like I established when I wrote my version of the Merchant play, Shylock is not 'evil' nor is he the villain. He is in fact the hero of the play.
Nothing seemed convincing.
But then I looked closer at the word ‘cormorant.’
‘There is no consistent distinction between cormorants and shags. The names "cormorant" and "shag" were originally the common names of the two species of the family found in Great Britain, Phalacrocorax carbo (now referred to by ornithologists as the Great Cormorant) and P. aristotelis (the European Shag).’
Since there was no standardized spelling in the Elizabethan period, the name Shakespeare had several different spellings during his lifetime. The variations include:
As far as I know this is an original theory.
As much as I thought that there was no link between the two plays, I could not eliminate it from my mind.
I don't know, but I find it very plausible.
|Jessica, by Samuel Fields 1888|
In conclusion, yesterday I wrote about why Shakespeare would have written himself into the Merchant play, and today I have explained how Shylock is in fact Shakespeare himself.
I consider Merchant to be his best play, and now with this new understanding I hope that you consider reading, or re-reading it again.
If you want to read a version of the play that shows how it would have been performed in 1596 at The Theatre in Shoreditch by Shakespeare's company of actors, I recommend reading my version of the play. It is fresh and funny, and quite unlike any other version you have ever known.
Thank you for visiting this blog and I hope you do something special today to celebrate Shakespeare's birthday!
David B. Schajer
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