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Home :: Archive :: 2007 :: October ::
Observation about ducdame
The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 18.0679  Wednesday, 10 October 2007

From: 		Joseph Egert <
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 >
Date: 		Wednesday, 10 Oct 2007 11:20:11 -0700 (PDT)
Subject: 18.0674 Observation about ducdame
Comment: 	Re: SHK 18.0674 Observation about ducdame

Don Bloom writes: "the possibility [of ducdame's meaning] is certainly 
open to ingenious speculation. But that it is a phrase in Welsh is certain."

Enter Robert Graves. In his WHITE GODDESS (1948, p.29), Graves notes 
Jaques' magical invocation "ducdame" may derive from the formulaic 
introduction to riddling Welsh magic-drenched tales: "dychymig dychymig" 
("riddle me a riddle") or "dychymig dameg" ("a riddle, a riddle"). 
Shakespeare may be recalling a favorite joke of his "Welsh schoolmaster, 
remembered for its oddity."

   Joe Egert
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