Archives For Readings


Cozenage (n.)

Cozenage means “simpleton, dolt, fool”.  Cozenage is cited in three of William Shakespeare’s plays including Merry Wives of Windsor (MW IV.v.59), Hamlet (Ham V.iii.67), and The Comedy of Errors (CE IV.ii.97) Antipholus of Syracuse alone says to Ephesus: “They say this town is full of cozenage.”

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Behoveful/behoofeful (adj.)

Behoveful means “simpleton, dolt, fool”.  Behoveful is cited in William Shakespeare’s Romeo & Juliet (RJ IV.iii.8) Juliet says to the lady Capulet; We have called such necessaries as are behoveful for our state tomorrow.”

Zeffirelli Juliet, Lady Capulet, Nurse

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Capocchia (n.)

Capocchia means “simpleton, dolt, fool”.  Capocchia is cited in William Shakespeare’s (TC IV.iii.31) Pandarus says to cressida: “A poor capoachia, has not slept tonight.” 

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Birthdom (n.)

Birthdom means “kingdom of birth, birthright, native land“.  Birthdom is cited in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth (Mac IV.iii.4) Macduff says to Malcolm: “Let us bestride our down-fallen birthdom.” 

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Macduff and Malcolm. “For our money, Marin Shakespeare’s William Elsman is the craziest Macbeth yet.

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Victualler (n.)

Victualler means “inn-keeper, tavern owner“.  Victualler is cited in William Shakespeare’s Henry IV Part 2 (2H4 II.iv.341) The hostess says to Falstaff about allowing meat to be sold in lent: “All victuallers do so.” 

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Tragedian (n.)

Tragedian means “actor, strolling player“.  Tragedian is cited in William Shakespeare’s All’s Well That Ends Well (AW IV.iii.260) Parolles says to the First soldier about Dumaine: “how led the drum before the English tragedians,” and in Hamlet (Ham II.ii.328) Rosencrantz says to Hamlet: “The tragedians of the city.” 

Alls well rings Act Four: The two plots move forward. Disguised as enemy soldiers, the Dumaine brothers ambush Parolles and interrogate him.

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 Unsmirched (adj.)

 Unsmirched means “unstained, untainted, spotless“.  Unsmirched is cited in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet (Ham IV.v.121) Laertes says to Claudius: “The chaste unsmirched brows.” 

Russian actor Nikolai Massalitinov as Claudius with Olga Knipper as Gertrude in the Moscow Art Theatre production of Hamlet (1911-1912).

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