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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: March ::
Re: Forms of Address
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.0592  Thursday, 27 March 2003

From:           Daphne Pearson <
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Date:           Monday, 24 Mar 2003 16:33:50 +0000
Subject: 14.0574 Re: Forms of Address
Comment:        Re: SHK 14.0574 Re: Forms of Address

Regarding the form of address, right worshipful, I do not think that it
was reserved for earls.

I have transcribed a letter dated 1574 from a lawyer to a knight. The
knight is addressed as right worshipful.

The concept of worship is strange to us today, but it was based on
respect, and indicates someone entitled to this.

I've seen letters to Sir William Cecil, long before he was ennobled, in
which the writers fall over themselves to express respect or
worshipfulness.

As to whether Shakespeare understood the significance of forms of
address, anyone with education would have known them.

Regards,
Daphne

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