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Home :: Archive :: 2003 :: June ::
Non Sanz Droict
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 14.1218  Thursday, 19 June 2003

From:           Philip Tomposki <
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Date:           Tuesday, 17 Jun 2003 19:26:04 -0400
Subject:        Non Sanz Droict

James Conlan writes: "The motto in question more directly refers to the
actions of a character in a Thomas Nashe pamphlet who took a vow on a
rough sea crossing never to eat ham again. Upon reaching shore, the
recovering passenger adjusted his votive offering with the line "Not
without mustard." As this is a direct literary allusion, there is no
need to imagine a satire of Shakespeare at all."

Actually, there some question as to whether 'Non Sanz Droict' was ever
used by the Shakespeare or his family as a motto.  As far as I've been
able to discover, the only appearance of the phrase in connection with
Shakespeare is above a drawing of the Coat of Arms on a draft of a
document prepared by William Dethick, Garter King of Arms.  The phrase
appears three times, once crossed out.  In two instances, including the
crossed out version, there is a comma after the first word: Non, Sanz
Droict.  In the third instance, the phrase is all in capitals. It has
been suggested that the appearance of the comma indicates the phrase was
meant a denial of the petition (i.e. 'No, without right' to arms).  Do
any list members have more information on this?

Philip Tomposki

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