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The Shakespeare Miscellany

4.03  ·  Rating Details ·  95 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
In the best tradition of sound-bites and pithily entertaining witticism, the authors gather together essential facts and fascinating insights about William Shakespeare--probably the most famous writer of all time--and the world in which he lived and worked.
Hardcover, 224 pages
Published August 4th 2005 by The Overlook Press (first published April 26th 2005)
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Once again, Crystal uses his wit and humour alongside his fantastic wealth of knowledge and academic style.
This text is full of lots of interesting facts - 'miscellany' is exactly what it is! A perfect 'dip in' book for lovers of Shakespeare. The text does not cover Shakespeare's plays, but it is actually quite refreshing to read about Shakespeare, without worrying about the texts.

I would recommend to anyone who enjoys Shakespeare, or indeed anyone who enjoys Crystal! His signature style once ag
Jan 10, 2015 Liz rated it it was amazing
The whole family has been enjoying this collection of facts and observations as “bathroom reading” for months now. I think that I alone have been utilizing the sewn-in bookmark to read it all the way through. One of my favorite entries regards The Original Shakespeare Company, which endeavors to recreate the performance conditions of Shakespeare’s time by using original texts, rehearsing only briefly on the day of a performance, working from cue texts (an actor’s own part with cues, rather than ...more
Lisa Wilson
Mar 29, 2012 Lisa Wilson rated it it was amazing
This book was jam packed with interesting information related to Shakespeare and his plays. It's not really a book you can sit down to read cover to cover because your head would be spinning from information overload. I sort of used it as a restroom book if you know what I mean. Taken a bit at a time, it is very interesting and contains lots of facts that I did not know. If you love Shakespeare, then this is the book for you!
Feb 19, 2014 Monic rated it liked it
Somewhat less interesting than I had hoped. Be warned that this is miscellany about Shakespeare, and not about his texts exclusively (as I would have preferred). There is a lot of dithering about on the subject of his siblings, home life, movements across the UK, school years etc. However, the map of all the settings of his plays, as well as line counts for different characters etc were enjoyable.
Jul 25, 2009 Rozonda rated it it was amazing
For Bardophiles like me, absolutely delightful. For the rest, a mixture of anecdotes and facts about Shakespeare at every level-from the types of verse used by Shakespeare, his use of "thou" and "you" or the word that appears the most in his plays to what you get if you search "Schwarzenegger Shakespeare" in Google or the weirdest versions of the plays in theatre and film. And all mixed up with no order whatsoever. Yes, it's as fun as it sounds.
Apr 05, 2016 Annabelle rated it really liked it
A Booksale purchase, and mighty expensive and P150. And a delight to read. It made me miss my reading group, whom I read Hamlet and Julius Caesar with. Some of the trivia here I already knew, thanks to that group. This may just be the book that jumpstarts/revives the group to regroup. And tackle a certain Scottish play...
Sep 28, 2016 Rick rated it really liked it
A melange of all things, plays, poems, acting, theaters, etc. Included is a sizeable index to relocat entries such as "False Friends." These are words defined in "modern sense" usage followed by "obsolete sense" with examples from various works. One entry notes that play goers were provided with vegetables and fruit to throw at the actors. Audience involvement I guess.
Oct 09, 2014 Eleni rated it really liked it
Starting to prepare for a course in the history of the English language that I will be teaching next year and began with this book. It has provided me with a good base to start learning about Shakespeare language next.
Feb 02, 2012 Crystal rated it liked it
Lots of fun Shakespeare facts, in no particular order. Full of quotes you'll want to mark with a post-it for later use!
Oct 23, 2011 Kayla added it
LOVE IT!!! it sounds like something that would be incredibly boring to some people but i find it to be one of the most interesting nonfiction books i've ever read.
Sarah rated it really liked it
Aug 22, 2013
Helen Mears
Apr 29, 2014 Helen Mears rated it it was amazing
A wonderful feast of facts and gobbets.
Vronsky rated it liked it
Dec 14, 2013
Emily Weathers
May 16, 2015 Emily Weathers rated it really liked it
Good resource.
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David Crystal works from his home in Holyhead, North Wales, as a writer, editor, lecturer, and broadcaster. Born in Lisburn, Northern Ireland in 1941, he spent his early years in Holyhead. His family moved to Liverpool in 1951, and he received his secondary schooling at St Mary's College. He read English at University College London (1959-62), specialised in English language studies, did some rese ...more
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