Did you know that Shakespeare coined* over 1000 words, many of which we still use today and some of them we use everyday!
But WHY did he invent so many words ? This is a good question. He didn’t it simply to fit in with the rhythm of his text, he needed words with the right number of syllables to fit in with the meter rhythm of the line.
Indeed many of the words that Shakespeare coined came from adding suffixes and prefixes such as -ful, -able – fied. For example, laugh and able, un and dress, care and less. So if you find English adjectives confusing you know who to blame !
Sometimes he put 2 words together, for example bed and room. Thank you Shakespeare for that one! Plus, birth and place, farm and house.
In this podcast, Sue asks Chris to explain 10 Shakespearian inventions and then he “turns the tables” on her… you can thank Shakespeare for that one too !!!
Listen out for these words and expressions:
It’s Greek to me
To be tongue tied
fair play / foul play
A fool’s paradise
A hard day’s night
A green eyed monster
What the Dickens !
- to coin means to invent a new word or expression