Neil Rathmell – writer

100+ essays on literary topics

Tag Archives: Shakespeare

Was Shakespeare a Catholic?

Whether Shakespeare was a Catholic is and will always be a moot point. The only thing we can say with any certainty is that his grandfather was. The only way … Continue reading

July 6, 2016 · Leave a comment

Tottel’s Miscellany

In 1557 Richard Tottel published the first anthology of English verse, the forerunner of Palgrave’s Golden Treasury and the Penguin Book of English verse. Tottel’s book, which came to be … Continue reading

May 11, 2016 · Leave a comment

Based on a story by…

If Shakespeare were alive now he would have been obliged to advertise his new play as being based on a story by Robert Greene. He would also have needed Greene’s … Continue reading

April 13, 2016 · Leave a comment

Poems in October

Shakespeare, Keats and Dylan Thomas wrote, in Sonnet 73, To Autumn and Poem in October respectively, not about a season but about death. When poets write about one thing, they … Continue reading

October 14, 2015 · 1 Comment

Burying Shakespeare

First, the canal. Othello, thinks the designer, is set in Venice, so let’s have a canal, let’s start the play with Iago and Rodrigo sailing onto the stage in a … Continue reading

September 2, 2015 · Leave a comment

From Shakespeare to Hardy

It may seem outlandish to compare the early novels of Thomas Hardy to the late plays of William Shakespeare, but reading Far From The Madding Crowd for the second time … Continue reading

April 22, 2015 · 1 Comment

A Reader’s Diary, 23 April 2014

We appreciate the modern in Shakespeare and ignore, excuse or improve everything else. It happens to all writers. They go out of fashion soon after they die and wait in … Continue reading

April 23, 2014 · Leave a comment