|Quoting Antdenatale (Reply 7):|
Never saw the appeal of Shakespear myself, went to Stratford last year and saw the 'Scottish Play' and Mrs D was impressed but it left me wondering what all the fuss was about.......
At least you went to see it. One of the things that does my head in is the way schoolchildren are given dry texts and expected to spot the magic somehow. It's crazy, Shakespeare was written to be performed and seen.
As to his importance, it's on several levels: he's the single most important person in the history of the English language, coining more than 2,000 brand new (or at least, first published) words on his own
, plus putting together combinations of words that no-one had ever thought of - for example "ill-used". Shakespeare, more than any other single person is
modern English. Shakespeare's plays used a variety of language unmatched, his own vocabulary was bigger than some entire languages! We use Shakespeare every day of our lives, mostly without even realising it: you don't "budge an inch", or play "fast and loose" or vanish "into thin air", "cruel to be kind", "more in sorrow than in anger" - it's absolutely endless. If you talk about quotability alone, Shakespeare is in a league of his own, no-one comes anywhere near.
And this is even before you get to the sheer quality of his work. The writing is utterly stunning, the poetry simply the best ever written in English. I can't tell you to like it, any more than I can tell you why my favourite band is better than yours, but Shakespeare commands the language and the stage, unlike anyone before or since.
She's as nervous as a very small nun at a penguin shoot.