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Words We Owe To Shakespeare

It has been more than 400 years since Shakespeare’s death and we still use his language. The Bard has been credited with introducing around 1,700 words to the English language.

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Are you generous or frugal? A champion or lacklustre? You would be surprised at how many words we use today that were first written by Shakespeare.

Some words he invented and some were in common use but hadn’t been written down anywhere yet. Shakespeare used the language of kings and queens as well as the common people.

He coined the use of many common phrases we still use such as:

  • Break the ice
  • Refuse to budge an inch
  • Eaten me out of house and home
  • For goodness’ sake
  • Good riddance
  • Heart of gold
  • Laughing stock
  • Wild-goose chase

The Many Faces Of Shakespeare

There are many different portraits of Shakespeare in the world. With three quite different portraits as most likely to resemble Shakespeare himself.

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The Droeshout portrait was done around 1622, six years after Shakespeare’s death. However it was done within living memory of people who knew him well and his contemporary, Ben Jonson implied it was a good likeness.

The Chandos portrait was painted in Shakespeare’s lifetime around 1610. Many believe it is a true portrait of Shakespeare painted from life, but it is not able to be definitively substantiated.

The Cobbe portrait is another portrait allegedly drawn from life, but is also unsubstantiated.

So that’s the short and the long of it and all’s well that ends well.

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