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Shakespeare and the Ulster Dialect

Shakespeare and the Ulster Dialect

Regular price $8.40
  • ISBN-13: 9781910375006
  • Publisher: Books Ulster
  • Release Date: May 31, 2014
  • Edition: 2
  • Pages: 34 pages
  • Dimensions: 0.09 x 8.5 x 5.5 inches


In "Shakespeare and the Ulster Dialect", which was first published in the "Northern Whig" newspaper, Belfast, 22nd April, 1916, Sir John Byers identifies Elizabethan words and phrases that came to the North of Ireland with the English planters in the seventeenth century and which were still in everyday use there at the beginning of the twentieth century. John Byers (1853-1920) was an eminent medical professional who had a passion for the study of Ulster language and folklore and had previously published "Sayings, Proverbs and Humour of Ulster" in 1904. From the introductory section of "Shakespeare and the Ulster Dialect": "Until the end of the eighteenth century there was a tradition in Ulster that pure English was spoken in Lisburn, and it was computed less than half a century ago—1878—that, while at that date a glossary of more than 2,000 words would be required to enable a modern Englishman to read his Shakespeare, probably about 200 words (one in ten) or less, would be all that an intelligent North of Ireland person would need to understand the works of the greatest of poets and dramatists."

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