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Could Shakespeare's Bones Tell Us if He Smoked Pot?
LiveScience ^ | Article: C6/27/2011 | Stephanie Pappas

Posted on 07/09/2011 2:03:24 PM PDT by nickcarraway

A South African anthropologist has asked permission to open the graves of William Shakespeare and his family to determine, among other things, what killed the Bard and whether his poems and plays may have been composed under the influence of marijuana.

But while Shakespeare's skeleton could reveal clues about his health and death, the question of the man's drug use depends on the presence of hair, fingernails or toenails in the grave, said Francis Thackeray, the director of the Institute for Human Evolution at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg, who floated the proposal to the Church of England.

Thackeray conducted a study in 2001, which found evidence of marijuana residueon pipe fragments found in Shakespeare's garden. Cannabis was grown in England at the time and was used to make textiles and rope. Some Shakespearian allusions, including a mention of a "noted weed" in Sonnet 76, spurred Thackeray's inquiry into whether Shakespeare may have used the mind-altering drug for inspiration.

"If there is any hair, if there is any keratin from the fingernails or toenails, then we will be in a position to undertake chemical analysis on extremely small samples for marijuana," Thackeray told LiveScience.

A poet's curse

Whether or not Shakespeare smoked pot, he certainly didn't want his remains disrupted. The stone covering the poet's grave carries an engraved curse for any would-be intruders.

"Blessed be the man that spares these stones," the engraving reads, "And cursed be he who moves my bones." [8 Grisly Archaeological Discoveries]

Thackeray said he has a way around the Bard's curse.

"We don't want to move any of the bones," he said.

(Excerpt) Read more at livescience.com ...


TOPICS: Books/Literature; History; Weird Stuff
KEYWORDS: godsgravesglyphs; libertarian; napl; pothead; ronpaul; shakespeare
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What won't they accuse him of?
1 posted on 07/09/2011 2:03:34 PM PDT by nickcarraway
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To: nickcarraway

unbelievable.


2 posted on 07/09/2011 2:04:17 PM PDT by ken21 (liberal + rino progressive media hate palin, bachman, cain...)
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To: GretchenM; TBP; clockwise; highball; KC_Conspirator; lizma; Stoat; rdb3; onedoug; SunkenCiv

Ping


3 posted on 07/09/2011 2:04:56 PM PDT by nickcarraway (All the Squares go home)
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To: nickcarraway

Bones would not tell as much as voter rolls showing Shakespeare to be a registered Libertarian Party voter.


4 posted on 07/09/2011 2:06:04 PM PDT by Colonel Kangaroo
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To: nickcarraway

Out damn spot.....

oh...its a hallucination....never mind.


5 posted on 07/09/2011 2:09:49 PM PDT by Vaquero ("an armed society is a polite society" Robert A. Heinlein)
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To: nickcarraway

“You can’t appreciate Shakespeare until you’ve read him in the original Klingon. ...”

General Chang


6 posted on 07/09/2011 2:12:17 PM PDT by Vaquero ("an armed society is a polite society" Robert A. Heinlein)
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To: nickcarraway

“Would he were wasted, marrow, bones and all” ~King Henry VI, part III: III, ii.


7 posted on 07/09/2011 2:15:35 PM PDT by mikrofon (A goodly medicine for my aching bones!)
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To: nickcarraway

The guy has been dead long enough for the statute of limitations to have expires methinks.


8 posted on 07/09/2011 2:16:42 PM PDT by Professional Engineer (Gov. Perry is a solid conservative... as long as it's campaign season.)
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To: nickcarraway
Because creativity can only be the product of recreational-drug abuse.

</sarcasm>

9 posted on 07/09/2011 2:21:00 PM PDT by E. Pluribus Unum ("A society of sheep must in time beget a government of wolves." - Bertrand de Jouvenel des Ursins)
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To: Professional Engineer

I think they are trying to claim the pot was responsible for his genius.


10 posted on 07/09/2011 2:21:03 PM PDT by nickcarraway (All the Squares go home)
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To: nickcarraway

What kind of person really feels a need to know?


11 posted on 07/09/2011 2:27:20 PM PDT by cripplecreek (Remember the River Raisin! (look it up))
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To: nickcarraway

the marijuana plant /hemp plant often was used in herbal medicine, so that wouldn’t prove anything.

And equating the drug culture in the US, i.e. taking drugs for pleasure to get high, was not the same as using a herbal medicine.

I suspect Shakespeare used beer and wine to get drunk...


12 posted on 07/09/2011 2:31:43 PM PDT by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: cripplecreek
Aberrant perversions produce parallel behaviors.
Homosexuals desire to claim the famous people in history were homosexual. Druggies desire to show the great achievers of the past were druggies.
13 posted on 07/09/2011 2:34:01 PM PDT by MrEdd (Heck? Geewhiz Cripes, thats the place where people who don't believe in Gosh think they aint going.)
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To: nickcarraway; StayAt HomeMother; Ernest_at_the_Beach; 1010RD; 21twelve; 24Karet; 2ndDivisionVet; ...

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Thanks nickcarraway.
Neither of either; I remit both twain. I see the trick on't: here was a consent, Knowing aforehand of our merriment, To dash it like a Christmas comedy: Some carry-tale, some please-man, some slight zany, Some mumble-news, some trencher-knight, some Dick, That smiles his cheek in years and knows the trick To make my lady laugh when she's disposed, Told our intents before; which once disclosed, The ladies did change favours: and then we, Following the signs, woo'd but the sign of she.
Nah, not high.

To all -- please ping me to other topics which are appropriate for the GGG list.
 

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14 posted on 07/09/2011 2:35:14 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Yes, as a matter of fact, it is that time again -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: LadyDoc
OLIVIA:What's a drunken man like, fool? CLOWN: Like a drowned man, a fool, and a madman: one draught above heat makes him a fool, the second mads him, and a third drowns him.
TN1.5.127-30
15 posted on 07/09/2011 2:37:12 PM PDT by nickcarraway (All the Squares go home)
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To: nickcarraway

Of course, when they dig him up, and examine his DNA, they’ll find out the body is Francis Bacon’s.


16 posted on 07/09/2011 2:39:25 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Yes, as a matter of fact, it is that time again -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: nickcarraway

GOOD FREND FOR JESUS SAKE FORBEARE TO
DIGG THE DUST ENCLOASED HEARE.
BLEST BE YE MAN YT SPARES THES STONES AND
CURST BE HE YT MOVES MY BONES

Shakespeare’s epitaph.


17 posted on 07/09/2011 2:39:39 PM PDT by yarddog
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To: MrEdd

They are desperate to matter.


18 posted on 07/09/2011 2:40:46 PM PDT by skr (May God confound the enemy)
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To: nickcarraway

Maybe the residue found on the pipe fragments came from this anthropologist’s hands.


19 posted on 07/09/2011 2:42:39 PM PDT by Bigg Red (Palin in 2012)
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To: nickcarraway

Paultards desperate for a celebrity endorsement?


20 posted on 07/09/2011 2:45:34 PM PDT by mnehring
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To: mikrofon

“Doobie, or not doobie... that is the question...”


21 posted on 07/09/2011 2:48:36 PM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
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To: Tijeras_Slim

awesome, lol


22 posted on 07/09/2011 2:54:00 PM PDT by TwoSwords (The Lord is a man of war, Exodus 15:3)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

It’s just not possible to be that clever. Nope! I did not read that post I must be dreaming.


23 posted on 07/09/2011 3:08:50 PM PDT by TigersEye (Wranglers not Levis. Levi Strauss is anti-2nd Amendment.)
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To: nickcarraway
The bones of the semi-literate William Shakspear may tell us if he smoked pot, but since he was not the author of the plays by William "Shake-speare" (as the nom de plume was spelled according to the style of the times) why would anyone care?
24 posted on 07/09/2011 3:13:36 PM PDT by KamperKen
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To: yarddog

YE YT YT are (very common) misspelling of þe (the) and þt (that). The rune Þ (thorn) was (along with eth, Ð and ð) used for the th-sound in english well into the 17th century.

The Þ was often stylized on signs and looked like a Y to many people who aren’t familiar with the rune, e.g. Þe olde tea shoppe is mistakenly read as ye olde tea shoppe...at no point has english used ‘ye’ as a definite article (’se’ was used in old english along with ‘the’), etc.

Even without looking at a pic of the engraving it is virtually certain that shakespeare’s epitath, if the original, has some form of thorn, not y, in those places.

You didn’t ask any of this, of course, but it is not well known and may be interesting to some readers. Even Lovecraft fell for the ‘ye’ article in The Case of Charles Dexter Ward.


25 posted on 07/09/2011 3:15:19 PM PDT by WoofDog123
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To: nickcarraway

Thackeray sounds like he might be a pothead.


26 posted on 07/09/2011 3:17:08 PM PDT by FlingWingFlyer (When the going gets tough, the tough check themselves into "rehab".)
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To: MrEdd
Aberrant perversions produce parallel behaviors. Homosexuals desire to claim the famous people in history were homosexual. Druggies desire to show the great achievers of the past were druggies.

Yes, exactly. The chances that Shakespeare actually was a pothead are approximately ZERO, but that's not really the point. Potheads seem to be constantly trying to convince everyone how wonderful their favorite drug is. Instead of trying to bombard the rest of us with this ridiculous propaganda, why don't they admit that they just like getting stoned and that's all it's ever been about?
27 posted on 07/09/2011 3:23:18 PM PDT by irishjuggler
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To: Tijeras_Slim

Now THAT’S funny :>)


28 posted on 07/09/2011 3:42:08 PM PDT by irishtenor (Everything in moderation, however, too much whiskey is just enough... Mark Twain)
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To: nickcarraway
whether his poems and plays may have been composed under the influence of marijuana.

Who doth care?

29 posted on 07/09/2011 3:46:51 PM PDT by Poison Pill
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To: Tijeras_Slim

Outstanding. LOL!


30 posted on 07/09/2011 3:53:40 PM PDT by lonevoice (Life is short. Make fun of it.)
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To: SunkenCiv

The evil men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.

I would hope that his friends used the good stuff at the wake instead of interring it with his bones.


31 posted on 07/09/2011 4:07:11 PM PDT by wildbill (You're just jealous because the Voices talk only to me.)
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To: LadyDoc

They didn’t have much wine as we know it in Eng then. It was mostly ale and cider.


32 posted on 07/09/2011 4:23:14 PM PDT by kabumpo (Kabumpo)
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To: KamperKen
...but since he was not the author....

Ben Jonson knew he was.

33 posted on 07/09/2011 4:28:59 PM PDT by onedoug (If)
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To: wildbill
The evil men do lives after them; the good is oft interred with their bones.

'Julius Caesar'.

I would hope that his friends used the good stuff at the wake instead of interring it with his bones.

I'm not familiar with that one:)

34 posted on 07/09/2011 4:29:43 PM PDT by Ken H
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To: Vaquero

Well said !


35 posted on 07/09/2011 4:34:06 PM PDT by Patton@Bastogne
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To: WoofDog123

That is interesting. I knew roughly what his epitaph was but decided to look it up. That was the way it showed so I just copied it.

Anyway it is clear Shakespeare didn’t want anyone to mess with his grave.


36 posted on 07/09/2011 4:49:39 PM PDT by yarddog
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To: Tijeras_Slim
“Doobie, or not doobie... that is the question...”

Now that is one of the all-time best puns I have ever seen on Free Republic. Wit personified.

37 posted on 07/09/2011 7:23:39 PM PDT by Windflier (To anger a conservative, tell him a lie. To anger a liberal, tell him the truth.)
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To: yarddog

I got curious. The image of his actual graven epitaph most certainly has Y, with letters appended in the exponent area.

I am assuming that this is a stylization during the period of transition away from use of thorn, eth, and ash (Æ and æ). The wikipedia page (a good source for anything beyond the ability of modern politics to corrupt) suggests that printing presses didn’t support the runes, and Y was often used as a substitute despite not being pronounced that way.

Shakespeare’s english would have had very little old norse influence, as the vikings never conquered wessex in the 9th century (they did conquer most of the rest of england). His plays still use the old english third-person singular -eth verb ending, rather than the -s in the rest of england. (telleth, rather than tells). He also, iirc, uses the old second-person sing. pronoun, Thou, thy, thine.

The english we speak today is more the london variant, which was heavily influenced by old norse, and even after all the influence french later had, still is iirc something like 10-15% words directly descended from old norse words that entered the language. It is also suggested by many philologists that we have the danelaw to thank for the almost total end of the old english declension system and possibly gender too (think german, etc.) We only have the genitive today.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ye_%28pronoun%29


38 posted on 07/09/2011 8:20:08 PM PDT by WoofDog123
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To: LadyDoc

It is a known fact that Thomas Jefferson occassionally filled his pipe with hemp.


39 posted on 07/10/2011 3:32:46 PM PDT by JEC ((Pray for ALL our troops))
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To: JEC

hemp was grown in the south, but what is sold in the US as marijuana is much stronger than was sold in the 1960’s...

it’s like the difference between 2 percent beer (a mild calming effect) and whiskey. Think Hashish...


40 posted on 07/10/2011 5:24:15 PM PDT by LadyDoc (liberals only love politically correct poor people)
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To: wildbill

I think Falstaff and Sir Toby Belch are Shakespeare’s best known references to substance abuse. :’)


41 posted on 07/10/2011 6:48:33 PM PDT by SunkenCiv (Yes, as a matter of fact, it is that time again -- https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: LadyDoc

Sounds like you have first hand experience today from what was sold in the 60’s. I agree that pot sold today is much stronger than was sold then. I would not call it hashish as I have not seen any since about 1975.


42 posted on 07/10/2011 9:42:36 PM PDT by JEC ((Pray for ALL our troops))
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To: Slings and Arrows

Not a PING


43 posted on 07/11/2011 12:29:01 PM PDT by a fool in paradise (Ask Barack Obama this election if he believes Jesus Christ rose from the dead and walked among men.)
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To: a fool in paradise; MeekOneGOP; Conspiracy Guy; DocRock; King Prout; Darksheare; OSHA; ...
Facepalm - Worf

44 posted on 07/11/2011 1:36:10 PM PDT by Slings and Arrows (You can't have Ingsoc without an Emmanuel Goldstein.)
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To: SunkenCiv

I see your point. But then, I was stymied by the opacity of some of Shakespeare’s work when I was in high school, so it’s not surprising. But it may be opium and not marijuana. They’ll find out.


45 posted on 07/11/2011 1:56:46 PM PDT by TheOldLady (FReepmail me to get ON or OFF the ZOT LIGHTNING ping list.)
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To: nickcarraway
Some Shakespearian allusions, including a mention of a "noted weed" in Sonnet 76, spurred Thackeray's inquiry into whether Shakespeare may have used the mind-altering drug for inspiration.

O, ay; as summer flies are in the shambles,
That quicken even with blowing. O thou weed,
Who art so lovely fair and smell'st so sweet
That the sense aches at thee, would thou hadst
ne'er been born!

Othello (IV, ii)

46 posted on 07/11/2011 2:49:32 PM PDT by martin_fierro (< |:)~)
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To: Tijeras_Slim

Not sure if they could tell if he smoked pot by his bones, but they probably could by his joints! ;)


47 posted on 07/11/2011 2:58:16 PM PDT by allmendream (Tea Party did not send the GOP to D.C. to negotiate the terms of our surrender to socialism.)
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To: WoofDog123

Thanks to you, I DID learn something new today.
Now if I can just remember it...


48 posted on 07/11/2011 2:58:20 PM PDT by FreedomOfExpression
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To: allmendream

Good one!


49 posted on 07/11/2011 3:04:39 PM PDT by Tijeras_Slim
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To: nickcarraway

Well, you know how the homosexual lobby likes to claim without proof that many of teh founders or other similar national heroes were homosexual?
Well, this is the pot version of that.


50 posted on 07/11/2011 3:14:01 PM PDT by Darksheare (You will never defeat Bok Choy!)
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