[LMB] OT: Shakespeare's accent

brazee howard at brazee.net
Sun Jul 25 14:05:15 BST 2021



> On Jul 24, 2021, at 9:58 PM, Matthew George <matt.msg at gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> It's not only a matter of accent, but pronunciation - much of Shakespeare
> is written in rhyme as well as iambic pentameter, but we don't realize it
> because how the words are said has shifted.  I was grateful when my
> high-school English classes on Shakespearean plays used texts that had the
> lines on one page and explanations of terms, customs, spelling,
> pronunciation, etc. on the opposing page.  A lot of those plays isn't
> possible for an uninformed modern person to properly understand.

We had the great vowel shift.

Lots of his poetry no longer rhymes because we don’t pronounce the words the same as they did back then.


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