The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 19.0136 Wednesday, 27 February 2008
From: David Bishop <
Date: Wednesday, 27 Feb 2008 02:04:24 -0500
Subject: 19.0131 Solid Flesh Once More
Comment: Re: SHK 19.0131 Solid Flesh Once More
Martin Mueller gives an instance from 1600 of "sollid." It seems to me
that even without the added "l" "solid" could be read as "sallied."
While I appreciate the value of arguments from image clusters, etc.,
Martin Mueller fails, like so many textual scholars, to make a serious
argument from the meaning of the words, and the play. The antithesis of
"solid" and "melt" would still be there, no matter whether or not this
association cropped up anywhere else. It seems clear to me that Hamlet
is referring to the youthful solidity of his flesh that strands him so
far away from a desired death, but since this thought apparently doesn't
compute with anyone on this list, I must tentatively conclude, with
pleasant surprise, that I am the only critic who has ever thought of it.
We can't absolutely know, etc. Yet we have to try. In editing
Shakespeare, my rule of thumb is to produce the best Shakespeare
possible, which I tend to believe coincides with the real Shakespeare.
Removing all appeal to meaning and quality in the interest of
"objectivity" will accelerate the decline of the humanities, as the
burgeoning non-literary world becomes convinced that nothing of
potential interest to them is going on in Shakespeare studies.
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