This puts a whole new spin on The Merchant of Venice: According to this Associated Press article, Shakespeare wasn’t just English literature’s foremost creative visionary; he was also a hardhearted grain merchant who sometimes landed in legal trouble for his unethical business practices....more
Posts Tagged: Shakespeare
Whom do we have to thank for the line “I’ll teach you how to flow”? LL Cool J? Method Man? Actually, it’s Antonio, Prospero’s villainous brother in The Tempest.
HTMLGiant collects this and other Shakespeare quotes that sound like 1990s hip-hop lyrics....more
Richard III, whom Shakespeare portrayed as deformed and murderous, has been dug up not in a cathedral or mausoleum but underneath a parking lot.
The BBC reports that after extensive research and DNA testing, archaeologists are sure “beyond reasonable doubt” that the remains belong to the fifteenth-century king....more
As the amount of digital data in the world balloons, so do the costs of storing that data.
Some scientists are experimenting with ways to save data on a “device” much older—but also much more efficient—than hard drives: DNA itself.
The first thing they encoded on a double helix of nucleotides?...more
Located, according to its profile, in Stratford-upon-Internet, Twitter account @pentametron finds random users’ everyday tweets that happen to be in iambic pentameter and retweets them as rhyming couplets.
It’s unclear whether the account is a bot or a human with computer assistance or what, but the results are golden....more
If you’ve ever felt like reading good literature gives you more comfort and insight than any self-help book ever could, you’re probably onto something.
Scientists at the University of Liverpool recently conducted a study indicating that the brain “lights up” bigger and brighter when grappling with Shakespeare and Wordsworth than when taking in ordinary prose....more
Jazz musician Pete Levin has provided a quick and easy way to verbally shatter any foe with Ye Olde Official Shakespearean Insult Kit.
Users are given four fields – an introductory phrase field and three adjective fields – with which they can weld a sentence long verbal dagger....more
Here’s some interesting reading from the world of poetry this week.
This is a little dated by internet standards, but it’s still worth looking at: Calvin Trillin versifies about the Roman Polanski apologists....more
The Book of William — the new book chronicling the fortunes of Shakespeare’s First Folio, by regular Rumpus contributor Paul Collins — gets a nice brief writeup in the “Nonfiction Chronicle” feature of the NYT Sunday Book Review:
“Part antiquarian-book primer, part chronicle of literary curiosities, The Book of William is divided into five acts, each evoking a significant place and time in the First Folio’s colorful history…
“Weaved throughout are accounts of Collins’s amusing efforts to examine a handful of the 230 First Folios known to exist; he writes of the mixture of horror and delight he felt on discovering that ‘some Jacobean brat’ had doodled in a Folio’s margins....more