The Shakespeare Conference: SHK 21.0347 Thursday, 26 August 2010
Date: August 2, 2010 7:50:28 PM EDT
Subject: 21.0333 An Allusion or a Coincidence
Comment: RE: SHK 21.0333 An Allusion or a Coincidence
Much thanks any to Joseph Egert for the link to SJ Schonfeld's "A Hebrew Source for
the MOV." Heretofore I have put no credence at all in "there's Hebrew stuff in
Shakespeare!" but Mr. Schonfeld has provided a reasonable (to me) way for that to
Recent DNA studies have charted the path of Jewish migration through various
nations. It was a shock to me to find my family name, as is, as a place name in
"When in 1492 Jews were expelled from Spain a great number of them took refuge in
Italy. In the same year Jews were expelled from Sicily. The Spanish Jews arrived in
Tuscany, Naples, Ferrara and in some other towns. In Rome and Genoa they experienced
hunger, plague, and poverty and in many cases were forced to accept baptism in order
to escape starvation."
"In 1516 the first Ghetto was estabilished in Venezia (Venice). Later other ghettos
were established. The Church, deeply involved into the fight against Reformation,
began a fanatic hunt of forbidden books and in 1553 in the principal cities of Italy
were burned all the found copies of the Talmud."
It seems to me that two things, needing money to prevent starvation and wanting to
preserve Jewish stories and literature from the fire, would be a very reasonable
incentive for enterprising young men to rewrite Jewish stories to fit a
Christian/Italian venue. (Hey, Irving Berlin wrote "White Christmas.") Once the
stories were in Italian, other enterprising young translators could earn a penny
putting them into English, French, wherever they could sell them. Playwrights could
then ransack them for material.
I'm going to stop poo-pooing the Hebrew connection. I now find it quaintly
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