Dear God, the Rennies were right all along.

Not that there’s anything wrong with Rennies*, but… we’re never going to live this down.

[KU Professor Paul] Meier is staging Shakespeare’s “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” in November, and it will be the first time in North America that a Shakespeare production is being performed entirely in the original pronunciation.


“American audiences will hear an accent and style surprisingly like their own in its informality and strong r-colored vowels,” Meier said. “The original pronunciation performance strongly contrasts with the notions of precise and polished delivery created by John Gielgud, Laurence Olivier and their colleagues from the 20th century British theater.”

Yeah.  That’s the accent you get from people who are trying to sound all archaic-folk-Celtic.  And they’re apparently right.

Via AoSHQ, damn them.

Moe lane

*Renaissance Faire enthusiasts.


  • Phineas says:

    I wish the original article had explained more of how they reconstructed the original accents, but one thing I do dispute: those accents were heard into modern times in North America. The islands off North Carolina were so linguistically isolated that they preserved accents and pronunciations very similar to those in Britain. American troops from that area arriving in the UK were mistaken by locals for Britishers and asked why they had gone to America to enlist. (Sorry, can’t find a link, now.)

    I’d love to hear a whole play in this.

  • Phineas says:

    Argh. Forgot to mention, the incidents I mention occurred around 1942.

  • countrydoc says:

    Just a little housekeeping note, your link for AoSHQ does not actually go to AoSHQ. That is all, carry on!

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