April 23rd, 2009
05:39 PM ET

All’s well that ends well

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/04/23/shakespeare-portrait.jpg]
Jami Floyd | Bio
In Session

Happy Birthday Bill! As in Bill Shakespeare. The bard’s actual date of birth isn’t known for certain, but most scholars put it on April 23, 1564.

So if you are among those who consider the bard the greatest writer ever, today is the day to unleash thy inner bard. Mayor Daley in Chicago has decreed it: “Talk Like Shakespeare Day” so, “screw your courage to the sticking place” and celebrate Shakespeare’s birthday—with his words.

Shakespeare contributed more than 1,700 words and phrases to the English language. So all day long, you can pepper your conversation with phrases like “prithee” and “fie”. Or, if you’re at lunch, “pass yonder salt and pepper.” If you’re the boss: “come hither sirrah.” Need to yell at that driver who just cut you off? “a pox on both your houses. Why settle for ‘idiot’, when you can say “thou rank fly bitten canker-blossom”? So much more satisfying.

All you lawyers out there can add weight to your arguments, start them with “methinks,” “mayhaps,” “in sooth” or “wherefore.” And speaking of lawyers, Shakespeare didn’t really want us to “kill all the lawyers”. His point was precisely the opposite: eliminate the lawyers and social unrest results. “Sweets to the sweet” has come to mean an amorous gesture. But Hamlet’s mother was talking about funeral flowers. Most of the time we get it right, which is saying something four-hundred and forty-four years after the fact. It says something about the power of words: then and now.

Filed under: In Session • Jami Floyd • The Buzz
soundoff (5 Responses)
  1. Tammy, Berwick, LA

    Sweets indeed for the sweet as today is also the anniversary of the bard's death. There is no other quite like him. Cheers to the life and legacy of William Shakespeare.

    April 23, 2009 at 9:04 pm |
  2. earle,florida

    too be blunt; the plague of hypocrisy shall befall all who stumble upon my words; heeding not sequestered differences deeply recessed in thy head to fore-stall your temporal fate,.. Happy Birthday "William"!

    April 23, 2009 at 8:35 pm |
  3. Joe G. (Illinois)

    It’s a shame to say that for those who view writing as a way to express oneself that Shakespere was one of the greatest.. It just goes to show the level of his audience that just like the cockroaches don’t ever seem to go away.. Hah.. Hah.. Ha! Who comes up with these blog ideas anyway?

    April 23, 2009 at 7:07 pm |
  4. Hatch

    For sooth, my friend, for sooth.

    April 23, 2009 at 6:39 pm |
  5. suntak

    tho feverish article bouts to cling, cling additional shakessperishessee... suntak

    April 23, 2009 at 6:07 pm |