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Saturday, 23 April 2011

Stuart’s Daily Word Spot: Glisters

Portia and ShylockImage via Wikipedia
Shakespeare was born on this day in 1564 and died on this day in1616.

So my word is Glisters, as used by Will as follows:
In ‘The Merchant of Venice’, Portia, a beautiful, virtuous, wealthy woman, is being wooed by numerous suitors. She’s not free to decide which of these she’ll marry, because her late father’s will stipulated that she must marry the man who correctly picks out the one casket, of three, that contains her picture. One casket is gold, another silver, and the third is lead. The Prince of Morocco, one of a long line of suitors, believes it would demean Portia for her picture to lie in anything but a gold casket, and chooses that one. Unlocking it, he finds a picture of Death, with a message written in its hollow eye:

"All that glisters is not gold;
Often have you heard that told.
Many a man his life hath sold
But my outside to behold.
Gilded tombs do worms enfold."

With grieving heart, the Prince takes his leave of Portia, who, happy to see him go, wishes him "A gentle riddance."

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