Ye-Olde-Spellinge Corrector

Word Macros to Help Normalize Early Modern English Texts The following macros will help start you on your way to modernizing the spelling of Early Modern English texts — especially large tomes and those downloaded from Early English Books online. It corrects many of the most common spelling variations and makes the works easier toContinue reading “Ye-Olde-Spellinge Corrector”

Not Just a Translator: Extraordinary Praise for Originality and Quality of North’s Writing

Nineteenth and early twentieth century scholars studying Thomas North’s translation of Plutarch’s Lives were often effusive in their praise of both the originality and quality of North’s prose. They noted that North frequently veered from the original foreign text he was translating in order to rework it into his own masterful style–punching up speeches, embellishingContinue reading “Not Just a Translator: Extraordinary Praise for Originality and Quality of North’s Writing”

Credit Where Credit is Due: Prof. Alan Hughes!

If I argue Thomas North should get credit for Shakespeare’s source-plays, I damn sure better credit my sources as well! So my apologies to Professor Alan Hughes, but on page 117 of Michael Blanding’s “North by Shakespeare,” I am quoted off-the-cuff as saying the following about “The Longleat Manuscript” :  “Why would someone take the topContinue reading “Credit Where Credit is Due: Prof. Alan Hughes!”

Contemporary Praise for North as Tragedian and Records Documenting North as Playwright

Multiple records confirm Thomas North began writing plays early, starting at Lincoln’s Inn, and continued to do so throughout his life. By 1560, the year North turned 25, Jasper Heywood placed him at the top of a list of the best tragedians at the Inns of Court. Records also confirm he continued writing plays, mostlyContinue reading “Contemporary Praise for North as Tragedian and Records Documenting North as Playwright”

Gosson’s 1579 Reference to the original “The Merchant of Venice”

The source play for The Merchant of Venice, which was originally titled, The Jew of Venice, is relatively easy to date: 1578. We know this because we can confine its date between a known source, Richard Robinson’s English translation of the Gesta Romanorum (1577), and a known allusion to the drama in Stephen Gosson’s SchoolContinue reading “Gosson’s 1579 Reference to the original “The Merchant of Venice””