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Home :: Archive :: 1998 :: May ::
Re: Pronunciation
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 9.0496  Monday, 25 May 1998.

[1]     From:   Jonathan Hope <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 May 1998 13:58:15 +0000 (GMT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation

[2]     From:   Justin Bacon <
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        Date:   Wednesday, 20 May 1998 12:27:37 -0700
        Subj:   Pronunciation

[3]     From:   Richard J Kennedy <
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        Date:   Thursday, 21 May 1998 16:20:49 -0700 (PDT)
        Subj:   Re: SHK 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Jonathan Hope <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 May 1998 13:58:15 +0000 (GMT)
Subject: 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation

Joseph Tate reads me as implying that the 'sonic features of a language
are allowed only semantic functions'.  I certainly didn't mean to imply
this.  One of the basic problems with trying to recreate accents from
the past is that while the semantic content of words is (relatively)
stable, the connotations of the phonetic features that make up accents
can change much more quickly and more radically (as I tried to
illustrate with my post-vocalic 'r' example).

This may be just terminological, but I'd class these connotations of
phonetic features as sociolinguistc, rather than semantic.  So I think I
said the opposite of what Joseph thinks I said... I think.

Jonathan Hope
Middlesex University

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Justin Bacon <
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Date:           Wednesday, 20 May 1998 12:27:37 -0700
Subject:        Pronunciation

I must agree with the general trend that the conversation is taking:
Attempts at reconstructing period accents may be useful as intellectual
exercises and to explore possible interpretational impacts those accents
might have, but to actually *use* them for a stage production would be,
in my opinion, to push their usefulness too far.

Justin Bacon

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[3]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Richard J Kennedy <
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Date:           Thursday, 21 May 1998 16:20:49 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation
Comment:        Re: SHK 9.0487  Re: Pronunciation

The DNB has this to say of Henry Wriothesley's great-grandfather, Sir
Thomas (d. 1534):

"He spelt his name in a variety of ways, originally as Writh or Wrythe,
subsequently as Wreseley, Writhesley, and eventually Wriothesley; the
last was the form adopted by his own and his brother's family.  In Tudor
times it was pronounced Wrisley."

It seems that I am wrong and that WRIOTHESLEY is not pronounced WORTHY
or some such, and it also seems that everyone is wrong about ROSELY.
STC19867 led me to an item that might settle the matter, not just to
take the word of the DNB.  It is an epitaph of some 110 lines upon the
death of Henry's father, Lord Henry the 2nd Earl of Southampton.  Within
a decorated border, the poem in black letter, the Earl is honored under
this heading:

"An Epitaph on the death, of the Right honorable and vertuous Lord Henry
WRISLEY, the Noble Earle of Southhampton: who lieth interred at
Touchfeelde in the Countie of Hamshyre, the30. day of November 1581. and
in the 24. yeare of our most drad and Soveraigne Ladie Elizabeth by the
grace of God, of England, Fraunce, & Ireland Queen. &c."

And so, WRIOTHESLEY seems to be spoken as WRISLEY, if we can take the
above as a phonetic proof.  And so the ROSE of the marriage Sonnets is
not a pun on WRIOTHESLEY, an argument used by Stratfordians and some
Oxfordians.
 

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