The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 12.0069 Monday, 15 January 2001
Date: Thursday, 11 Jan 2001 08:24:04 +0000
Subject: 12.0050 John Shakespeare and Literacy
Comment: Re: SHK 12.0050 John Shakespeare and Literacy
>John Shakespeare . . . probably would not
>have kept the borough's accounts, as he did for over three years, if he
>had been unable to read sums." He also believes that Mary Arden
>Shakespeare could read and possibly write as well.
>Jane Drake Brody
Odd that Honan is ignorant of the fact that by means of a variety of
counting and recording techniques, businessmen managed to keep track of
accounts for millennia before reading and writing became standard. Had
it been otherwise, illiterate tradesmen would not have been able to hold
such offices in Stratford, or any town.
Whether or not John Shakespeare or Mary Arden could read or write has
little to do with the discussion of where WS got his extremely rich (and
expensive) classical education. Clearly it was not from his family.