If you search for the word “pelican” in Shakespeare’s plays, you come across three instances, in Hamlet, King Lear, and Richard II. All three refer to a symbolic meaning of the pelican that can feel remote to today’s reader or audience member, but which Shakespeare’s audience would have been more familiar with.
Lady Mary Wroth watched Shakespeare act in his own plays, heard her relative Sir Walter Raleigh talk about founding Virginia, and almost certainly met Pocahantas and ambassadors from Morocco. Wroth’s later prose fiction echoes elements of her own life, including foreign travel, tragic deaths of siblings, arranged marriage, a lifelong love for her cousin, royal visits to her home, and then civil war.
This blog post spotlights five female artists whose interpretations of Shakespeare’s works are part of the Folger collection. We decided to highlight three sculptors and two book artists. Several of these artists and their work have been featured on The Collation, a Folger blog about research, scholarship, and the Folger collection.
A poster in the Folger collections shows charming illustrations of Mardi Gras floats in New Orleans that represent 18 of Shakespeare’s plays.
Fake quotes have been in the news lately, from the Republican National Committee’s Abraham Lincoln flub to the bogus Winston Churchill quote about supporting funding for the arts during World War II. Such misattribution is familiar to Shakespeare enthusiasts. Every day, fake Shakespeare quotes are being shared on social media. Have you come across these ones?
Shakespeare is a familiar sight in the theater and on the movie screen, but he’s permeated many other areas of American life. Advertisers have picked up on the ubiquity of Shakespeare for more than two centuries.