The comedies, histories, tragedies, and poems of William Shakspere . the Hebrew. In this way, The most forward budIs eaten by the canker ere it blow. ^ Scene I.—Not so much as a ducat. The ducat — which derives its name fromduke, a ducal coin—is repeatedly mentioned inShakspere. There were two causes for this.First, many of the incidents of his plays werederived from Italian stories, and were laid inItalian scenes; and his characters, therefore,properly use the name of the coin of theircountrj. Thus, ducat occurs in this play—inthe Comedy of Errors—in Much Ado aboutNothing—in Romeo and Juliet;

The comedies, histories, tragedies, and poems of William Shakspere . the Hebrew. In this way, The most forward budIs eaten by the canker ere it blow. ^ Scene I.—Not so much as a ducat. The ducat — which derives its name fromduke, a ducal coin—is repeatedly mentioned inShakspere. There were two causes for this.First, many of the incidents of his plays werederived from Italian stories, and were laid inItalian scenes; and his characters, therefore,properly use the name of the coin of theircountrj. Thus, ducat occurs in this play—inthe Comedy of Errors—in Much Ado aboutNothing—in Romeo and Juliet; Stock Photo
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The Reading Room / Alamy Stock Photo

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2AJB262

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2463 x 1015 px | 41.7 x 17.2 cm | 16.4 x 6.8 inches | 150dpi

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The comedies, histories, tragedies, and poems of William Shakspere . the Hebrew. In this way, The most forward budIs eaten by the canker ere it blow. ^ Scene I.—Not so much as a ducat. The ducat — which derives its name fromduke, a ducal coin—is repeatedly mentioned inShakspere. There were two causes for this.First, many of the incidents of his plays werederived from Italian stories, and were laid inItalian scenes; and his characters, therefore, properly use the name of the coin of theircountrj. Thus, ducat occurs in this play—inthe Comedy of Errors—in Much Ado aboutNothing—in Romeo and Juliet; and, morethan all, in the Merchant of Venice. ButItaly was the great resort of English travellersin the time of Shakspere; and ducat being afamiliar word to him, we find it also in Ham-let, and in Cymbeline. Venice has, at present, its silver ducat—the ducat of eight livres—worth about 3.s. 3fZ. The gold ducat of Veniceis at present worth about 6s. The followingrepresentation of its old gold ducat is from apimt m the Com Eoom in the British Museum.. TWO GENTLEMEN OF VERONA Scene II SCENE III.] * Scene I.— You have testernd me. A verb is here made out of the name of acoin—the tester—which is mentioned twice inShakspere: 1, by Falstaff, when he praises hisrecruit Wart, There s a tester for thee ; and, 2, by Pistol, Tester I II have in pouch. Wehave also testril, which is the same, in TwelfthNight. The value of a tester, teston, testern, or testril, as it is variously written, was sup-posed to be determined by a passage in Lati-mers sermons (1584):—They brought him adenari, a piece of their current coin that wasworth ten of our usual pence—such anotherpiece as our testerne. But the value of thetester, like that of all our ancient coins, wasconstantly changing, in consequence of the in-famous practice of debasing the currency, whichwas amongst the expedients of bad governmentsfor wringing money out of the people by cheat-ing as well as violence. The French n

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