Make a Donation

Consider making a donation to support SHAKSPER.

Subscribe to Our Feeds

Current Postings RSS

Announcements RSS

Home :: Archive :: 2001 :: February ::
Re: green-eyed monster
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0388  Friday, 16 February 2001

[1]     From:   Monica Chesnoiu <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Thursday, 15 Feb 2001 11:56:33 -0600
        Subj:   RE: SHK 12.0369 green-eyed monster

[2]     From:   Larry Weiss <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
        Date:   Friday, 16 Feb 2001 10:58:35 -0500
        Subj:   Re: SHK 12.0374 Re: green-eyed monster


[1]-----------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Monica Chesnoiu <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Thursday, 15 Feb 2001 11:56:33 -0600
Subject: 12.0369 green-eyed monster
Comment:        RE: SHK 12.0369 green-eyed monster

Graham Bradshaw writes:

>The association with eyes or seeing is what seems primary. If so,
>numerous connections and parallels are very interesting. For example, to
>be "envious" (cf. the Latin "Invidia") involves regarding somebody else
>in a particular, hostile way (in-videre), just as being "prudent"
>involves looking after oneself by seeing ahead (pro-videre). But then,
>why are the eyes green? Similarly dangerous animals, reptiles, or what?

I subscribe to the association with eyes, and more so, the eyes as the
mirror of the spirit. The issue can be found in treatises of moral
philosophy by William Cowper, "The Anatomy of a Christian Man (1613);
Richard Braithwait, _Essayes upon the Five Senses_ Chapter: "Of Seeing"
(1620); William Cornwallis, _Of Knowledge_ (1606); Ludovick Bryskett, _A
Discourse of Civill Life_ (1606). The general idea in these authors is
that the eye is the most important of the five senses but it is also the
principal organ of error.

As for the GREEN eyes, I have two suggestions. The first is less
scholarly and it derives from my knowledge of Eastern European folklore.
According to tradition, the evil eye (in Italian 'mal di occhio' and in
Romanian 'deochi') is transmitted by a green-eyed person. Hence the
connection with the Latin "Invidia." The second association comes from
the domain of alchemy. The early modern belief in correspondences
posited strong relations between precious stones, colours, psycholgy,
the soul and the senses. Here is what I found in an alchemical book by
Paracelsus, _The Coelum Philosophorum, or Book of Vexations_: "The
Emerald. This is a green transparent stone. It does good to the eyes and
the memory. It defends chastity; and if this be violated by him who
carries it, the stone itself does not remain perfect."
http://www.levity.com/alchemy/coelum.html

See you all in Emerald City,
Monica Matei Chesnoiu

[2]-------------------------------------------------------------
From:           Larry Weiss <
 This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it
 >
Date:           Friday, 16 Feb 2001 10:58:35 -0500
Subject: 12.0374 Re: green-eyed monster
Comment:        Re: SHK 12.0374 Re: green-eyed monster

I am mildly astonished by the confusion in this thread between jealousy
and envy.  "Jealousy," at least as used in Elizabethan and Jacobean
times, was suspicion that one's spouse or lover was unfaithful.  "Envy"
was and is covetousness.
 

©2011 Hardy Cook. All rights reserved.